A Tale of Athos Blackfyre - The Forgotten Dragon

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A Tale of Athos Blackfyre - The Forgotten Dragon

PostPosted by reythekid » Wed Aug 30, 2017 23:02

Decided to post some AARs I was working on, they're not very "lore friendly", so, if that's your thing, probably best you stop reading this.
Spoiler: show
Unfortunately, I had all the information for these on my desktop, and when that HDD went bum, I only had the stories that I'd been writing on my laptop, all the screenshots and everything went with the HDD. And I was planning to do a REAL AAR since I got back a new HDD but I've just started experiencing the most annoying crash, so that save is burnt, and I'm just going to post these few here and get them over with. This one in particular was actually supposed to take place from the point of view of Athos on the throne, but he reminisced about the paths it took for him to get there.


Without further ado, the one and only chapter, of Athos Blackfyre.

________________

“You are a special boy Athos, the blood of kings runs through you.” As a child those were the words his foster mother whispered as she tucked him in at night. Korra the cruel, she was called, a pirate lady from the free cities of Essos, with a fitting name to suit.

There was no secret that she was merciless in her dealings with enemies, and by enemies, she meant anyone who did not see things her way. She was a tyrant, but when it came to Athos, there was a gentleness about her.

Where she was wroth, she taught him to be kind, and from her stubbornness, she instilled in him to be patient. That was the way Korra raised him, she made sure none of her bad traits made it into the young Athos, well, except that it was okay to throw dirt in your opponent’s eye during a fight. It was a ruthlessness that served Athos well over the years.
Now here he sat upon the Iron Throne, the skull of Balerion the black dread hung in its rightful position once more, his lineage flourishing, nine living children, and eight grandchildren would survive him to carry on the Blackfyre name, a name that was to be worn with pride, and one that he certainly made sure the people of Westeros would never forget.

Rising from the throne he stepped down from the dais and began to make his way towards the small council room, a member of the Kingsguard routinely falling in a few paces behind him. It was something that he never got used to, a shadow mirroring his every move. Even though he had sworn shields before, it was different, they were his friends, they rode with him in battle, they drank with him, these Kingsguard, they were so duty bound it was sometimes sickening.
Even his own son, Igon – Strongfire they called him – knowing he would never sit the throne, at least not before either of his two brothers and their children, he begged to join the Kingsguard, saw it as his way to gain prestige, and once Athos took King’s Landing and removed every vestige of the previous king – Orys Baratheon, the King Who Knelt. He folded to his son’s demand and appointed him to the new Kingsguard, and as the first member in the new guard, he aptly took the title, Lord Commander.

Athos chuckled as he thought about it, “Lord Commander Igon.” He muttered to himself, he still remembered him as a little boy that ran around shoreline of Dagger Lake, chasing after his older brothers Daemon and Athos, now he commanded more respect than most men his age. Mayhap that was the reason for his stoicism as of late.
With a sigh he pushed the door of the small council room, and everyone rose, “Sit.” He waved them down and took his seat at the head of table, around him sat members from the most powerful families in Westeros, mingled with what some of them would consider commoners.

There was Willas Tyrell who served as Hand of the King, he had an ambition to see his family on the Iron Throne after the cockup that was Margaery, she went through three different rulers, only to be Queen for a few years before Orys had Tommen poisoned, and with not only his grandfather Tywin Lannister gone, but his mother – Athos had to admit the woman was cunning – Cersei Lannister, drowned by Euron of Pyke, the Kingdom was cast into chaos.
It was then that Orys Baratheon struck, like a thief in the knight he brought his armies from Storm’s End, rallied those that would to his banner, and he laid siege to King’s Landing. It was over before any of other Lords could rally their troops in aid, Orys Baratheon had usurped the Iron Throne, doing what his father Stannis Baratheon could not. For that, Athos held a measured respect for the man, but truly, Orys only served to keep the seat warm.

Next there was Master of Laws, Lord Rycas of Lower Rhoyne. The Master of Coin Prince Alleras of Dorne. Grand Maester Alesandor. Theon Greyjoy, Master of Ships. Then Special Advisors Prince Athos II Blackfyre, and Lord Meribald Tully – a man who so much as owed his life to Athos, for when the Riverlands fell back to the crown, Athos sought out the rightful heir, and returned the Trident to Tully hands.

“Your grace, today we wish to address the issue the Lord of the Vale, Samwell Arryn.” The Mistress of Whispers Lady Cassana spoke clearly, and as she did the room fell silent, this woman was revered, she’d done something on her own that many thought impossible, she’d killed a dragon, none could tame it, and it harassed her lands, for her that was enough. Needless to say, no one crossed the lady after that.

“I know who the little shit is, Cassana.” Athos addressed her casually, she served as his spymaster from the days when he was simply the Lord of Dagger Lake – later renamed Blackfyre – the only person on his council who remained from his original members, she was his friend, so Athos never felt the need to include the formalities with her, “Has he not answered the ravens?”

“He has, your grace.” She replied.

“And?”

“The boy will not bend the knee.”

“F***ing child.” Athos groaned, “Is he aware I could march my armies up to the Eyrie and tear his f***ing walls down around him?”

“You would be hard pressed to do that, your grace.” This time it was Orbelo that spoke, the Lord Paramount of Yunkai and the Master-at-Arms to the Iron Throne. – A gift from his kin Daenerys Targaryen.

“Speak, Orbelo.”

“You cannot simply march your armies through the Bloody Gate, it would be a slaughter. Your grace.” The last bit was tacked on, possibly Orbelo hoping to ease any anger that might rise.

“Then I shall take the dragons.” The words were met with silence, never a good sign in council meetings, and the way the eyes of his councilors darted from one to the other, he knew they were all looking for who would say it first, “Well, open your f***ing mouths, out with it.” He sighed.

“Father.” His son spoke, Athos II, he looked nervously towards him, before breaking away from his gaze, the Targaryen blood flowed in him, but he had the features of his Naathi mother, more than he did of Athos. Yet, he was more like his father than even his brother Daemon.

“Athos?” He said and the boy took a breath.

“Father, the last time you used the dragons, was in the battle against Lord Cossomo of Pentos, that left the fields ablaze for days, father. Holdings burnt, common folk unhappy, innocents dead.” Athos nodded, “And before that, it was against King Grazdan of New Ghis.” Athos could never get over how well his son remembered things, he was positive he could bet a gold dragon the boy could tell them the exact date the battle occurred.

“I am listening.” He said and Athos II took a breath.

“Old Ghis no longer exists father, you burnt it, you destroyed the castle. People no longer look at you, look at us, dragon riders, as signs of glory and greatness, no, it is fear father. It is fear, that the coin has landed on the side of madness once again.” The councilors looked away, leaving the conversation seemingly between father and son for the moment, “You cannot, burn, the Eyrie. I will not vote in your favor if you decide to.”

The room grew silent, and for a moment the tension was palpable, but after a long pause, Athos took a breath and spoke, “You are wise, Athos, that is good. A king that is quick to destroy everything and everyone that goes against him, would soon find himself with a populace who wish him dead.” Athos II nodded silently, “Very well, Lord Rycas, send the boy another raven. Cassana, find me leverage, I care not for what it is, something that will make the boy bend the knee, or will stir him and his armies from the Eyrie to come face me. That is all.”

The councilors nodded with affirmation and one after the other rose from their seats to leave, “Athos, hold a moment.” The king said and Athos II paused, “Have a seat.”

Reluctantly Athos II sat, “Father…” He started, but was cut off as Athos raised a hand, and waited for the last of the council members to leave the room.

“Worry not, I feel no anger towards you. I simply wished to talk, I’ve been so caught up in ruling I have no time for leisure. Or family, or mistresses.” He laughed and Athos II smiled, “Have you a mistress?”

“No father, no mistress.”

“You really must get one. They do the things your wife does not.”

“I am rather happy with my wife, and what she does, or does not do.” Athos laughed.

“Ah, no woman could satisfy me like your mother though, she was wise, loyal, strong, I loved her. The white dragon I called her.” He paused and gazed at nothing, remembering his first wife, the only marriage of love he’d had.
“Curse the c**t that took her from me. I had him and all of his accomplices burnt alive.” Athos II shifted uncomfortably in his seat, “Now, I’ve married this Lowther, a craven weak willed thing, she serves no purpose but to keep the image.”

“You could have remained unmarried.”

“Bah, beds get lonely in the winters, and it wouldn’t do to have a king who traipsed around with whores every night.” With a nod he continued, “No, I married her, but she did nothing for me. Then I saw the once Queen of the Iron Throne, the Tyrell girl.”

“Queen… Sorry, Lady Margaery Tyrell?”

“That’s the one. She’s been bothering me to set up a marriage for her, but, I’d much rather keep her to myself. She’s comfy enough in the hold at Blackfyre, no one bothers her, she has maidservants to answer to her every whim, best of all, she’s not coming after my throne.” Athos II grinned wryly and his father gave him a pat on the knee, “I tell you Athos, if you can, always be ahead of your opponents, keep them where you can see them. You think I do not know that Willas wishes to be have his family on the throne? I know. But he can’t get there, hand of the king is the closest his family will ever get to my throne.” He nodded somberly before changing the topic, “I remember your wedding day you know, how nervous you were as the bedding began.” An embarrassed grin broke out across Athos II’s face, “It was simpler then.”

“You were still a king.”

“An upstart king, the King of Blackfyre. I was young and expanding my empire by conquest, cutting a bloody path through Essos. Fighting off Dothraki, you know someone suggested I offer your sister to one the greater Khals.” Athos II’s eyes widened, “Of course I didn’t. Had that person banished from my realm the same time.” Athos sighed, “Then Danerys Stormborn died, and upset the entire f***ing cart.”

“I have never heard this story?”

“It is not a story I tell often. Still…” Athos took a breath, “I was young, younger, I should say, you would have barely seen your first name day at the time. And I’d just received a raven from Jon Snow, commander of the night’s watch.”
“Lord Commander Jon Snow?”

“You know another?” Athos II shook his head, “He claimed the dead were walking, and they brought the frost with them, I thought he must been off his ass talking that shite, but Cassana, bless her heart. She has eyes everywhere, and she confirmed it. Well, not her, but a whore that sends her information for gold.” Athos II tilted his head.
“Why would you want information about the Night’s Watch?”

“That is another story. One about blood.” Athos II nodded, not in understanding, simply acceptance, “The whore told her that a ranger, a fearless man, came to her one night in Mole’s town, he was to go out on a range again, but apparently, the last time he went out, he barely returned with his life. This was a man who murdered people, even his own brothers at the wall shifted uncomfortably around him, but he’d be stricken with fear. So much so that he deserted the watch.” Athos paused for a moment, “He was caught, and executed, and it was enough to intrigue me honestly, so I hired mercenaries, raised my personal levies, hired some ships, and we sailed towards the wall.” He shuddered, I still remember how f***ing cold it was when I landed at Eastwatch. There wasn’t nearly enough fire to warm me, even Henkirix seemed cold. It was cold as f***.” They laughed together, “I ranged out with my band, twenty thousand strong, but ten days in and that number to dwindled to fifteen thousand, what the cold didn’t get, desertion claimed. By the end of the month, I was down to eight thousand and I thought it was all bullshit. I was cursing Cassana in every language I knew. But that’s when it happened, I thought it couldn’t get colder, I was wrong, I felt it down to my bones, Athos. To my very core. To breathe was painful, it was so damn cold. Then I turned and I saw it, coming towards me slowly, but steadily, blue eyes staring dead, the shimmering glass blade in its hand, it was a White Walker. The things from your nightmares.”

“Did you…?”

“Win?” He laughed wryly, “I’m here aren’t I?” Athos II sighed, even at nineteen Athos II was still enthralled by his father’s stories, “It approached me, with a slowness that belied its true speed, unlike anything I’d have experienced, I barely had time to get Kingmaker from its sheathe to block the first attack, the bastard went right for my head.”
“Where were your men? Where was Henkirix?” Athos II interrupted, and Athos chuckled, “I’d taken it upon myself to walk away from the camp for a shite.” Athos II raised an eyebrow in condemnation, “But, the bastard, I blocked his first attack and struck back, my joints stiff like they were frozen in place, but I fought through it. I struck back against it, and the sound its sword made as it parted the air was deafening. Unlike I’d ever heard, and when our blades connected, I swore my head would tear open.” Athos closed his eyes, and relived the moment for a second, in all his life, it had truly been the most fearsome battle he’d been engaged in, when he reopened his eyes, Athos II watched him with uncertainty, as if he was worried for his safety, but a smile and a gentle touch from Athos quelled his doubts, “Eventually I got the upper hand, I’d trained all my life, and Korra taught me well, so when I had my opening, I swung my blade so hard it shattered that devil glass it wielded, and cleaved it from shoulder to rib.” He made a motion across his chest to show what he meant, “And that settled it for me. I couldn’t allow this to cross the wall, the spill out into the seven kingdoms, my kingdoms, they weren’t at the moment, but they would be. So I sent ravens to my vassals raised the levies of those loyal, hired additional companies, and waged war beyond the wall. Henkirix had the time of his life, you thought Old Ghis was bad? No. Every settlement beyond the wall that had a stench of other in it, we burnt to the ground, destroyed it, until we could find no more. Afterwards, Lord Commander Snow declared his War for Dawn won. I returned to Dagger Lake, and me and the Lord Commander and I became fast friends since I answered his call. I thought that was the end though.”

“Wait, it wasn’t?”

“No. Jon Snow waged war against the others three more times, and every time I answered the call, every time I took men with me, knowing they’d never come back. I took boys younger than you, who thought they would make their name fighting alongside, Athos Blackfyre. But all they made were their graves.” Tiredness and fear crept into his voice, “Even now I’m not sure if the others have been entirely defeated, I keep in touch with Lord Snow, Cassana extended her eyes all along the wall, she even found a way to get some spies beyond the wall, but, I cannot say for certain that it is, or isn’t. I just know, the others are real, and they scare even me.” The words hung in the air for a while, and they sat in silence.

“We’ll be ready should it be necessary.” Athos II replied gently.

To this Athos snapped up, his eyes aflame, “You are never to go beyond the wall, for any reason, it is not craven, Athos. It is sense. The others, they are not to be trifled with.” He placed a hand on Athos II’s face, “Promise me. You will never go beyond the wall, and you will council your brother against it when he leads.”

“Father, we can defeat the others.” Athos pulled away and sighed, “Father, our family is full of dragon riders, Daeron, me, Rhaeyna, Igon. And we are just your eldest, I am telling you father, should the others dare to rise once more, they will be destroyed.”

With a sigh, Athos sunk into his chair and looked at his son, Athos II, second of his name, born from a bastard and the sister of a raider, but sitting here in front of him, was no longer just his son, but also the Lord Paramount of Pentos, and a successful ruler.

Athos had to admit that he was trying far too hard to keep his children close to home, for a few years after Daemon – his heir – reached adulthood, he refused to offer him any land or titles, placating him repeatedly every time he’d ask. Though, it was partly out of anger, the boy had eloped against his will, married the daughter of Barristan Selmy, Rylene. While her father was a great man, Athos had truly desired a better union for his son.

Yet one year Daemon came to him, respectfully, and requested the seat of Dragonstone as it was rightfully his as the Taragaryen heir, and after a heated debate between the two of them, and the airing of some grievances, Athos bent to his son, and agreed he would hold the seat of Dragonstone and no more, until he ruled the seven kingdoms. That was the first time Athos allowed any of his children to spread their wings, but once they began, he could not stop them.
Athos II was granted the Kingdom of Pentos, which he ruled from Nymeria’s Palace – a massive fortress in Ny Sar.

Princess Rhaenyra married Lord Horonno of Yunkai – heir to the kingdom of Yunkai.

Then princess Elaena approached him one day and asked permission to become a septa. How could he refuse her, compared to her siblings she was asking for a puppy, he said yes.

Then Igon joined the Kingsguard, Princess Doshura married Royce II of the North.

The Blackfyre children had spread their wings, like the dragons they rode.

“Times have changed, father.” Athos II said and Athos nodded silently.

“They have, Athos… They have.” He replied and Athos II stood.

“I have some other matters to attend to.” Athos waved him away, “Father, you told me once, we are the dragons. None will break us.”

As Athos II walked way, Athos could help but see a little of himself, the boy was wise, but brave, too brave. Athos had seen what happened to brave men, he touched his chest where the scar was, a keepsake from one of his battle's beyond the wall. If not for Aeryn, his first friend, it would've been more than a scar, but Aeryn took the fight for him. Aeryn was a brave man. Brave men died.
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