Welcome to the Ending Explained for House of the Dragon, Episode 6, titled, “The Princess and the Queen”. The title is in reference to a novella written by George R.R. Martin, the creator of the A Song of Ice and Fire universe, who also serves as executive producer on this show. Martin has plenty of experience writing for television, and it seems like his ideas, so far, translate very well to the medium. They are exciting, surprising, and all full of complex and entertaining characters. HBO‘s rule of the weekend is still unmatched.
Episode 6 becomes a milestone for the show. It is the middle of the season and things are ramping up very quickly the menace of war is at hand, and it is quite amazing how the characters, loyalties, and revelations are still meaningful in each episode. Sometimes, many shows wait for the final episodes of the season to make the characters do or learn something relevant. House of the Dragon has proved you can do that in every single episode. This is good television at its finest.
The following paragraphs contain spoilers for House of the Dragon, Episode 6. Read at your own risk.
What Happened To Rhaenyra After The Wedding?
The ending of episode 5 saw Rhaenyra getting married to Laenor Velarion, finally joining the house and giving the Velaryon a chance to be part of the royal family. However, things are not so simple because of the existence of Aegon, son of King Viserys. Like Otto Hightower warned his daughter Alicent when he left King’s Landing, the moment Viserys dies, there will be war. Rhaenyra might be the heir to the throne, but the lords and the people will not want a woman as king. They will want Aegon on the throne, and Rhaenyra’s only choice will be to kill Alicent’s son.
Ten years have passed since that wedding, and many things have happened. Rhaenyra is now a mother, and two boys and another one are being delivered just as the episode begins. However, she is still not Queen but a Princess. Viserys is still alive, old, without an arm, but still kicking. The division between Alicent and Rhaenyra has become even greater, and it makes each day an awkward conversation. Ser Criston Cole is now Alicent’s sworn sword, and it seems like the red and black colors of House Targaryen have been substituted by the greens of House Hightower.
Viserys has the illusion that by making both Alicent’s and Rhaenyra’s sons live together and experience things together as kids, he will ensure that they live in peace in the future. The kids like each other and do what kids do. They go train, and they try to make links with their dragons and so forth. Young Aemond, for example, cannot link to any dragon and that makes him sad. The others mess with them, and yet they all look like normal cousins. With one exception. Rhaenyra’s sons don’t look anything like Laenor. They don’t even have the characteristic Targaryen silver hair.
A rumor has begun to spread through the hallways of the Red Keep. Rhaenyra’s sons are not Laenor’s but Harwin Strong’s. It is very apparent, the kids look like him, and while Harwin is Rhaenyra’s sworn sword, he cares for the kids more than he should. When Criston provokes his anger by mistreating the kids, the rumor is all but confirmed. The standing of House Strong is at stake, and also the legitimacy of the kids, as they would be bastards because Harwin and Rhaenyra are not married. Alicent talks with Viserys about it, but the old king doesn’t want anything to do with it.
What Happened To Daemon After The Wedding?
The other half of the episode is dedicated to Daemon, who has now been married to Laena Velaryon for a long time. They have two daughters, and Laena is expecting a third. The couple seems very much in love as they fly their dragons, and it is revealed that they are staying at the Free City of Pentos on the continent of Essos. A place that, in the future, Daenerys Targaryen would call home before going on her search for the Iron Throne. The family looks very happy.
The leader of the city even proposes giving Daemon a big property in the city, where he and his family can live like kings and queens. The leader says they would be respected and loved by the citizens of the city. They would be lords and ladies of Pentos. The only thing he asks for such a gift is that Daemon and his family’s dragons can be there if there are problems with other cities in the future. To work as a deterrent. Daemon thinks the offer sounds very good, but Laena is not convinced. She doesn’t want to stay and Pentos, and she didn’t marry a man who didn’t have ambition.
Laena pushes Daemon to leave and maybe even continue his search for the Iron Throne, but Daemon has no interest; he doesn’t want to deal with politics. He just wants to be happy with his family. When the time arrives for Laena to deliver her third child, complications arise and the baby just won’t come out. Daemon finds himself in the same dilemma as his brother in Episode One. However, Laena makes the choice and goes to Vhagar, her dragon, and asks her to kill her. The old dragon does it. Leaving Daemon and his daughters is sad.
Someone who does want to play politics is Larys Strong, younger brother to Harwin and son of Lyonel, the hand of the Kings. Larys sees that with his house tainted by what his brother did with the Princess, his father should stop being Hand of the King, and Otto Hightower should come back and be an ally to the Queen. He executes a plan where he kills both his father and brother. Alicent is horrified by it when Larys explains what he did, but he is sure that Alicent will thank him in the future.