This story takes place in the beginning of season 7. After watching the season Finale I was struck with a story idea.
Summary: Dany has arrived at Dragon Stone and already her alliances are threatening to crumble, fear and need for vengeance the only thing keeping the treaty of the great houses intact. And while she yearns to take her throne once and for all — more obstacles still stand in her way. Unruly Krakens, Proud Lions and curious of all, Pleading Direwolves proclaiming monsters lay in wake. (The timeline will be reimagined and I will be adding many new touches, but the story will follow the season as well.)
One : The Stormborn Dragon Returns to the Eye of Her Birth
Mother of Dragons
They'd been at sea for months and already Daenerys grasp on the alliances formed between the Tyrells, Greyjoys, and Sands is threatening to slip away from her. The voyage from Meereen to Westeros has been nothing but one argument after another as they visited each other's ships, discussing the future. Countless councils Dany has had to listen to one petty grievance after another and today is proving to be no different.
The Sand Snakes, beautiful bastard women from Dorne, who had risen to power after murdering their Prince, and for the younger girls— their uncle — hate the Greyjoys. Old injustices have not been forgiven, it would seem the kraken people always took a special pleasure when they went out of their way to raid Dornish Ports. Yara, herself, an accused pirate that had caused mischief not even a year passed.
"These foul sea demons," the eldest daughter, Obara, the only homely Snake — spat, "washed upon our beautiful shores with the cover of night cloaking them like soul suckers, stole our goods, disrespected our house and raped our women! Why should we be forced to fight for their claim? If they aren't strong enough to take their throne for themselves, like we did, what good are they?"
Obaras' sisters nod their heads, identical scowls fixed upon their small lips.
Yara smirks at the hissing snake, her own homely face trying to hide how much the comments bothered her.
"I will not apologize for the lives we led, my people needed to get by somehow, but we are a reformed people now — I've given my word to our Queen we will change our ways — find new trades. And don't for a second think what you did was any more honorable than what we strive to do now. We're killing an uncle just like you, but at least ours can fight back. Where is the honor in killing a crippled? And disrespected your house? Not possible, Sand."
Nymeria, the middle and most beautiful Sand shakes her head angrily, "You drowned rats "changing" now does not make up for stolen maiden heads ago! And our bastard blood is twice as honorable as yours, sea cow!"
Both sides start yelling at one another in tandem making the rocking motion of the boat seem intensified to the annoyed Dragon Queen.
In the beginning of their journey, when these annoying squabbles erupted, Dany would cut them off immediately, letting her fiery temper seep into her words like melted snow into cloth — until her trusted hand, Tyrion, a Lannister, though she chose to not hold the family name against him, advised her to let the arguements play out no matter how ear splitting they may be. The scarred man hopeful their bickering allies might let precious words slip in the heat of the moment.
He's yet to be correct, at least in any important way. Nothing of great value has been said and Danys patience is wearing thin. She looks to the witty dwarf now, sitting to her right, a half empty goblet filled with wine clutched in his hand — like always. He seems to be napping at the moment, though. She sneaks a hand under the table and pinches his fleshy knee with her freshly filed nails.
He startles awake with a cry of pain, sloshing dark wine on his trousers and Dany turns back to the table of forced allies, barely smothering a smirk.
Now the Tyrells are fighting with the Sands, Lady Olena, an ancient woman, more brilliant and plotting then all of them put together, is goading Obara as Yara sits back with her arms crossed behind her head and a satisfied smile on her face — like a man that's just finished.
Here we all are, Dany thought, powerful individuals, sitting around a grand table, inside a beautiful cabin of a fabulous ship carrying us to my war to claim what was destined to me and I'm forced to listen to children squabble.
"Your Grace," Tyrion whispers next to her ear, the scent of wine wafting towards her rudely, "Do you remember when I advised you to let them find a natural conclusion to these strained meetings?"
Dany allows a slight nod, her eyes not leaving a raving Theon.
"Well, I was a fool, and I recant that statement. It's been two months and they've not let anything but venom and salt and thorns escape with their words. I think it's time for them to see a bit of fire as Dragonstone is but a few hours away. This behavior cannot continue."
The young queen doesn't follow every piece of advise her Hand gives, but when he told her she should show restraint with her temper concerning their "council" meetings — She listened, even though she didn't agree. It just wasn't worth arguing.
That being said Dany finds herself glad he's changed his mind. This lot may hate each other but she hates all of them more. Well, hate might be a strong word but shes definitely losing sight of why any of them needs to be in the room when plans are being made instead of just acting as foot soldiers.
Except for Olena. Oh, no, she needs to be kept close at all times. That old woman could have all of us in chains or graves if the mood struck her.
Tyrion sits back in his chair, refilling his goblet and Dany contemplates how to proceed, how much fire she wants to spew.
When Tyene Sand unsheathes a dagger prompting every other weapon to become naked to the soft glow of the hearth behind the Khaleesi, it becomes clear to Dany they must understand who is in charge and to do so they need to feel the heat.
She stands quickly knocking her chair down behind her, steals the goblet of wine from Tyrions small, fat hand and throws it into the fire, causing a gust of refreshing flames to billow towards her.
With her back still to them, only Missandei, straightening from her crouch after having to shield herself from the flame, can see her queens face. Dany had forgotten she had been standing there. I'll have to remember to apologize and be more careful of my friend in the future.
The cabin is silent of bickering idiots now, the prickle and snap of the heightened flame an unperverted symphony to Danys ears.
"Nobody better be holding naked steel anymore." She orders softly, speaking for the first time since this useless meeting had started. But now that I am talking — I'll make myself clear. They'll know where I stand on future childish antics now that my Hand has advised my interference.
The sound of metal being shelved sounds pleasing as it joins the flames, sending a shiver down Danys spine.
She still doesn't turn or raise her voice. If they're wise, they'll hear the inferno anyway.
"For the past two months I've suffered through meetings where you unruly lot wasted my time fueling your egos against one another. Arguing who has more honor, who started which feuds, which family name is more useful to me, failing to see I've become tired of you all."
In a satisfying coincidence the shiver inducing songs of her children can be heard perfectly as they fly toward the ships, but still a ways away. As they've grown their mothers connection to them has as well. They know when she needs them and out of the love in their souls for her — they come.
Daenerys faces her audience, all of which are paled by her soft ire. Even a usually self-satisfied Olena.
"I want to remind you of a few things. I command the largest army in Westeros, not including a single one of your soldiers. By my side — stand loyally, two of the greatest minds to counsel me through my reign," She lifts her hands to either side of her to Tyrion and Varys, "and three very large dragons. I don't say this now to hear myself speak but to make clear my point. I want us to be allies. This is what I want. Not what I need. Decide for yourselves if I need you and adjust your behavior accordingly."
"Of course, Your Grace, we are shamed to have offended." Elleria Sand, whom Dany had taken to calling the Snake Mother, is the first to grovel.
Everyone else with the exception of Olena are quick to follow.
"Well, now that we are all on the same page," Tyrion quips, snatching another goblet and the wine decanter, "Wait . . . what was this meeting even about?"
"Our assignments. We were brought here to discuss our plan of action." Obara reminds.
Yara rolls her eyes and heaves her body up to lean on the table.
"There's little to discuss. If you want the Iron Throne, take it! We have an army, a fleet and three dragons. Use them! We should hit kings landing now, with everything we've got."
Tyrion hums disapprovingly.
"If we turn the dragons loose, tens of thousands will die in the firestorms."
The Snake Mother snorts in an unladylike manor. "It's called war. If you don't have the stomach for it, scurry back into hiding, Imp.
"Yes, I know how you wage war. We don't poison little girls here, as foreign as that concept might sound to you."
"I regret nothing, of course with the exception that Oberyn died fighting for you!"
"That's enough," Dany insists, strictly, reclaiming the chair Grey Worm righted for her. "We've just had this discussion on petty arguments." She turns to Elleria and focuses solely on her.
"Disrespect to my hand is Equal to disrespect to me."
Elleria doesn't say anything more, but her expression remains just as bitter.
She speaks to the whole room again.
"I am not here to be queen of the ashes. I'm retaking my fathers throne because I want to help the people, how do you expect me to do that after I've murdered them all?"
"That's nice to hear," Olena interjects. "My granddaughter held the same kindness in her heart for the people. She was gentle and loved, the most loved queen that has ever lived probably—"
Not likely, Dany thinks to herself, remebering stories of the many beloved Targaryen Queens.
"— And what is left of her? Ashes. Commoners, nobles, whoever — won't obey you if they don't fear you."
Dany stares deep into the old woman's unflinching gaze.
"I have brought Dragons back into the world and used them to conquer already. They fear me. Trust me."
Olena looks down, unable to deny the young Targaryens words.
Dany searches the room.
"I will not attack kings landing. We will not attack Kings Landing."
"How do you mean to take the Iron throne, then? By asking?" Olenas gaze turns mocking. "Begging, mayhaps?"
Dany chooses to ignore the jab and keep focus on the task at hand.
"We will lay siege to the capital on all sides. Cersei will have the Iron Throne, for now, but no food for her army or the people.
Tyrion takes a gulp of his wine before explaining the rest of his plan.
"But we won't use the Dothraki or the Unsullied. Cersei is a master manipulator, she will try to appeal to the lords loyalty, their love for their country. If we besiege the city with foreigners, we will prove her point. Our armies need to be Westerosi.
Elleria chimes in, not seeming pleased with were the Dwarf is going with his speech.
"And I suppose we're providing the Westerosi?"
"Yes. Lady Greyjoy will escort you home to Sun Spear. And the Iron Fleet will ferry the Dornish army back up to Kings Landing. The Dornish will lay siege to the capital alongside the Tyrells army. Two great kingdoms united against Cersei.
"So," Lady Olena draws out, "your master plan is to use our armies. Pray tell, why did you bother to bring your own?"
Tyrion speaks into his cup. "The Unsullied will have another objective. For decades house Lannister has been the true power of Westeros. And the seat of that power is Casterly Rock." Tyrion looks to Grey Worm, the proud soldier listening intently so as not to miss a word. "The Unsullied will sail for the rock and take it."
A refreshing silence takes a hold of the room, a silence Dany is sorry to interrupt.
"Do I have your support?"
Yara is the first to comply, even with a sneer thrown over at the Sands, the next to voice their loyalty. Lady Olena nods softly once, a deep thought etched in her eyes.
"May I speak with you in private, Your Grace?"
Dany eyes the Tyrell Matriarch a moment before nodding, actively dismissing everyone from the room. She had planned to see them off, now that they will all be going their separate ways, but had no will to deny Lady Olena her undivided attention.
Even after everyone has left they just continue to stare at one another from across the long table. The old woman's stern gaze makes Dany feel young and inexperienced. She's conquered three ancient cities and shaped them to her will and yet this woman makes her feel like a child again.
"I realize you're here out of hatred for Cersei and not love for me , but I promise you, she will pay for what she's done. And we will bring peace back to Westeros.
"Do you think that's what we had with your father? Or his father? Or his? No. Peace never lasts, my dear. Will you take take a bit of advice from an old woman?"
Dany nods, knowing its all she can do.
Lady Olena leans forward. "He's a clever man, your hand. I've known a great deal of clever men. I've outlived them all. You know why?"
Dany doesn't move, already knowing the words about to come out of her mouth.
"I ignored them."
Lady Olena leans further still.
"The lords of Westeros are sheep. Are you a sheep?"
"I am a dragon."
Olena nods aggressively.
"Be a dragon."
Dany exits the cabin with much to think about. When on the deck of the Tyrell ship, a convenience she afforded Lady Olena, to save her old bones from having to go through the trouble of boarding another ship, She breathes in the fresh sea air, ignoring the bowing Tyrell soldiers as she makes her way to her entourage ready to step into the transport raft.
"That went better than I expected," Tyrion says moodily, "although I would have taken less offense if you'd thrown me into the fire instead of my wine."
Dany does find his comment funny but her mind is too jumbled to respond.
"Missandei, are you alright?" Dany asks as her friend settles into the raft, Greyworm holding onto her hand a beat longer than he did anyone else's.
"Yes, Your Grace, I was just startled is all." Dany can tell her friend is down playing how the flame effected her but by the way Missandei grasps her hand discreetly — she knows she's forgiven. Dany still vows to herself she'll find a way to make up for what she did.
Greyworm and another unsullied soldier begin rowing them back to their ship, the largest of them all and being rounded by three playful dragons. The sight of them always takes everyone's breath away.
I dreamt of them just like this when they were stone. Large and free and beautiful. I made that dream a reality and now I'm rewarded every day with the godly sight of them soaring strong.
"Does the sight of them ever tire?" Tyrion asks dreamily.
No one replies because the answer is obvious. They fly around Danys ship long enough for her to board then back track, flying further away from their destination.
"Where are they going?" Tyrion asks.
Danys looks down at him and smiles kindly. "They love the sea, they'll take full advantage of the time they have to play in it. Don't worry my friend, they'll know if I need them."
A few hours later, as the sun starts to set — Dragonstone appears, taking Danys breath away.
"Welcome home, Your Grace," Varys whispers, by her side.
Home. Home of my birth, maybe. But not where I belong. No, home lies further still.
AN: Please review!