Robert's Rebellion had come at last to its climax. A hundred thousand men had gathered, wearing Eagles, Wolves, Stags, Dragons or Flowers. Screams of death filled the air and the Trident ran red with blood. The war was over what man should be king of the seven kingdoms, but each man had his own reasons for fighting. Family, glory, loyalty, cruelty…
Robert Baratheon fought for a girl.
His Lyanna, his sweet girl. The girl he had loved more than any other; the girl he had been fated to marry. The girl that the Dragons had stolen from him. No, not the Dragons. It had been Rhaegar. Rhaegar had been the one to steal his Lyanna from him. Rhaegar, the perfect prince. "The king may be mad but his heir is a good man." they would always say, apologizing for Aerys' madness and cruelty. That 'good man' had taken the sweetest, fiercest, most beautiful girl in Westeros, had stolen her from his family, and had raped her a hundred times by now. Only now, months later, had Rhaegar been pulled away from that occupation. Robert's fury had accomplished that. Next, Robert's fury would accomplish his death.
Robert's vision swam with red as he swung down his war hammer, crushing the skull of a crownslander knight. He had lost his lance somewhere earlier in the fray and he had not taken the time to turn back and get a new one. His hammer fell again and again, coming up bloody after every strike. He had been fighting for hours, but he was scarcely aware of the passage of time. At some point Corbray had made a charge to cover his flank. At some point he had stopped fighting Tyrell levies and had moved onto Crownslanders.
The Dragon's banner had been growing steadily closer. Rhaegar was beneath that banner. "Come fight me, blackguard!" Robert screamed. "Come stand trial by combat! I've no thirst for the blood of your lackeys!" A knight of Duskendale closed with Robert. Robert shifted in his saddle, letting the knight's estoc glide off of his armor. His horse gnashed its teeth and stamped, turning to give Robert a better angle. The knight moved his shield to deflect the hammer, but so great was the weight of the hammer that he still nearly lost his seat. Robert swung his hammer again, and when the hammer slammed into the knight's chest, Robert could feel the ringing in his arms. The Duskendale Knight toppled lifeless from his horse.
Robert laughed aloud as his knights cheered him on. "Come on lads!" he called out, "We can't keep the monster waiting, now can we?" A resounding shout was their reply and they pressed on. They pressed on through row after row of knights. Many of them fell. They were replaced by new knights. Blood and gravel gave way to water as they entered the shallows.
That was when Robert saw him. A little ways up the line, resplendent in jet-black armor, with dragon-wings etched into his helmet. A storm filled Robert's' chest and exploded out of his throat. "RHAEGAR! COME OUT TO DIE!" In that moment, the battlefield vanished. Lyanna disappeared from his thoughts. Only he and the black prince existed and all else was meaningless noise. He raced to Rhaegar, heedless of danger. The black prince turned his head. Robert struck down a bothersome gnat of man in the way. They were thirty feet apart, twenty, ten.
Rhaegar's estoc skewered Robert just below the shoulder, tearing a hole in the mail and making him bleed. Robert ignored it. The long narrow blade could be deadly, but a hit to the shoulder was not a mortal wound. Anything less than a mortal wound at this point was meaningless. This fight was the end, nothing after it needed to be considered. He took the hit, swinging his hammer in thunderous reply. Rhaegar adjusted his seat and let the blow slide off of his shield, countering with a tight jab that cut into the hole he had made earlier.
Rhaegar Targaryean was a smaller man than Robert. He was weaker and had not pursued warfare with the single-minded focus that Robert had. But he was also more fresh and clear-headed than his opponent. He kept his eye on that deadly hammer, taking every precaution to dodge and weave away from it. Every time the hammer fell, he countered with a rapid thrust. Robert was bleeding, and that was all that mattered.
"WHERE IS LYANNA?" Robert bellowed, when the horses force them apart for a moment. "WHERE IS SHE, RHAEGAR?" He heaved his hammer again, and he felt the pain throb in his shoulder. Rhaegar did not answer, electing instead to lean out of the way of the deadly weapon.
Robert's rage had only been building with each passing strike. Deep, abiding hate filled him. In another universe, his hammer had found its home on the third strike and had borne Rhaegar deep into the Trident. In this one, Robert's rage overtook him. He closed with Rhaegar again, and again Rhaegar's esctoc lashed out. This time, Robert did not even make a pretense of dodging. He let the blade cut into his shield-arm and dropped his hammer, grabbing the black prince's wrist with his massive mailed fist and ripping him bodily from the saddle.
They both fell into the waters of the trident and came up fighting. Gone was the clash of legendary knights, replaced by an ugly brawl more fitting of Flea Bottom than of the trident. Rhaegar punched and kicked and twisted, but Robert's hands were like steel bands. He held onto Rhaegar's wrist and punched him with his shield. He punched him again, and then a third time, and then he lost count. Robert did not even notice when Rhaegar stopped hitting back. "LYANNNAA!" He finally screamed, crumpling the black prince's helm with a final blow. Around him, the battle had already been won. The forces of the Royalists retreating as their leader fell.
The haze of battle lifted from Robert. Rhaegar was dead. He had killed the man so many times in his dreams of late that it almost did not feel real to have finally done it. Robert wandered through the ranks of his soldiers, drunk on victory. They brought a half-dead Barristan Selmy before him. He pardoned the poor bastard, what else could he do? The day had been so long so and full of fighting, and he was tired, all the exhaustion of the day crashing onto him at once. He saw his friend, Ned, ride up to him, and greeted him with a glowing smile.
"Ned, you made it out alive!"
Ned smiled, but the smile was strained. "Your Grace…" Robert scowled. Why did his best friend insist upon… "You are wounded."
Robert glanced at the wounds that Rhaegar had left him. They had seemed so small at the time, he hadn't gotten them looked at, but now… "I suppose I am bleeding rather a lot." He could feel the sticky sap of dried blood caking underneath his cuirass. It was a good thing he was such a big man. A man of Ned's size would probably have bled to death. "Aye, I should see to it. Get me a maester, a hot fire, and enough wine to drown myself in and I will be right by morning."
Halfway to the maester's tent, Robert Baratheon, first of his name, king of the Andals and of the First men, fell off of his horse and died.