Hey everyone! MadTargaryen here wanting to wish all of you awesome fans a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays as well as my gift to you which is, as you can see, the first chapter of the new and improved version of The Other Prince! YAY!

I do apologize for taking so long to post the new story or anything for that matter. I have been so busy and I have also been working on many other stories I want to post as soon as possible, which includes two new GoT stories, The Desert Wolf (Stark OC story) and the Avatar of Westeros (A GoT/ATLA crossover) that I can't wait to upload!

I am very excited about what I have in this version as well as showing you all the changes that have been made and what is planned for the rest of the story. I cannot wait for you all to read it and tell me what you think.

I do not want to give too much away on what I changed but I feel like this change in the story needs to be addressed before you guys read the story so that you are not left confused. As part of the change, I have also changed the OC's name. Actually, he has two different names and I will explain why.

First, I changed his name from Silas to Cassander. While working on this chapter and thinking about what I should change, I went through all of my old notes and found the name I was originally going to call my OC for this story, which is Cassander. I thought the name would be more meaningful because it would be a namesake of Robert's mother, whose name was Cassana. I like to think that Robert Baratheon loved his mother and a good way to honor her memory was to name a child of his after her, at least in some way. Also, there are far too many Black Prince stories with names like Steffon and Orys and many other Baratheon ancestors and it might be refreshing to come up with a different name to use.

The second name I have given him is a slave name, Alcides (Al-sigh-dees). This is to keep Cassander's identity a secret while the Prince is enslaved in Essos as a precaution for Cersei in case anyone were to ever find out the truth of his whereabouts because as we all know, selling to slavers is illegal in Westeros and I am pretty sure that even the royal family is not exempt from that law and even if they were, the act of disposing Cassander alone would get them in trouble as well.

So, when I was reading through the chapters that I wrote, I was bothered by the fact that I did not realize that I should have changed his name when he became enslaved.I should have realized that if it was to be kept a secret about his enslavement, the first thing to do was to give him a different identity so that it could not be traced back to Cersei and Joffrey and the rest of the Small Council that allowed this to happen. It's a temporary name but know that when I use the name Alcides, I am referring to the OC.

Okay, I think that is all that I need to say for right now. Anything else will be left in the author's note at the end of the chapter so be sure to read that as well.

Alrighty, without further ado, here is the first chapter of the new and improved The Other Prince! Enjoy!

The Other Prince

CH.1

How did it come to this?

The clash of swords meeting rang through the arena of the hot arid stadium as the two men fought each other for their lives. The stone stadium trembled a rhythmic thundering beat of a thousand feet stomping as the spectators cheered on the fighters, not to support the slaves fighting, but for bloodshed. In this line of work, there are no winners, only losers and poor bastards that managed to survive this hell they call the fighting pits of Astapor for another day.

Pacing back and forth along the small square cell underneath the vibrating stadium was a young man of nineteen years. He was tall, broad in the chest and shoulders but lean and well-toned in his lower torso, the results of two years of doing nothing but training to fight for his life. His Sweat and dirt-matted his short messy mop of jet black hair sticking to the glistening suntanned skin of his square-jawed face.

He stopped pacing for a moment when he heard the crowd cheer. His bright emerald green eyes concentrated on the fight on the other side of the stone wall from the small window provided in the cells. He had already finished his match for the day, his body still ached from the beating he received, but won the match nonetheless and gained a new scar on his chest to add to the growing collection on his body, like tally marks, showing his every brush with death.

Like most of the slaves in these cells, he had to stay and wait for the other fighters from his Master's palace to finish their fights before they could return to their cells. By the sound of the crowd, he wouldn't be waiting much longer.

God's, how did it come to this? The young man thought to himself after he heard one of the fighters scream in pain and the crowd chanting KILL over and over again to the fighter still standing. How did I come to be a slave fighting for my life in this Gods forsaken pits for the entertainment of these people? I was a prince. I am Cassander, the trueborn son of Robert Baratheon, the late King of the Seven Kingdoms. I do not belong here!

No, not Cassander. That is no longer my name. It is Alcides.

When he was sold to a slave trader, he was given a new name in the hopes that when he sets foot in Essos, no one would be able to know his true identity. It was the only demand that his mother had of the Slave trader.

As he continued his pacing, Cassander heard two guards walking down the long stone hallway. They were laughing at something one of them said. Something about someone wanting to visit Master Kraznys. His master.

Cassander thought to himself how lucky he was to learn to speak and understand the Valyrian language during his lessons when he was younger. He certainly shocked his Master when he cursed at the man in Valyrian the first time they met. He had always been interested in Valyrian history and their culture before the Doom.

"She docked yesterday, wants to see the Unsullied," one of them, a bald portly man with dark skin, said to the other.

"Truly?" The other guard, a tall gangly man asked, sounding surprised. "Do you think she will purchase any?"

The portly guard jeered at his friend's question. "What the fuck is a woman going to do with an army of Unsullied?"

"But she's the Dragon Queen!"

Cassander halted suddenly and his eyes widened in surprise. The Dragon Queen! Daenerys Targaryen is here?

He remembered hearing of the last surviving Targaryens living in exile while he sat in on the Small Council meetings for his father. This was the only information that ever took his father's attention from his wine and whore's and caused him to go on a long tirade about how he wanted them dead and ordered them to hire an Assassin to kill Daenerys and her brother. Cassander always argued against it. He felt it was unnecessary and a waste of coin considering they were on the other side of the world with no money and no one willing and no power. They were no threat to them but his father refused to listen to him as Robert Baratheon always felt that his rule was never truly solidified as long as a Targaryen remains alive. This often ended with a shouting match between son and father while the other council members watched in annoyance as this made the meetings go on longer than necessary.

It wasn't until Cassander was brought to Essos when he began to hear more tales of the last surviving Targaryen from other slaves and merchants and traders in the market when he visited with his master. How she had been married to one of the mightiest Khals that roamed the Dothraki Sea. How she miraculously remained unburnt when she walked into her late husband's burning pyre and hatched three dragons. Cassander read many books on the Targaryens that claimed that they held some type of magic and powers, but he couldn't believe it for sure. People often did like to overpraise a famous name.

"So she says," The fat guard smirked. "That bitch is no Queen, I saw no dragons with her. Just because she has a famous name, she thinks she can rule the fucking world. She can be the Queen of my cock. That's all women are good for."

The two men laughed at the lewd jokes they made about the Mother of Dragons and what they'd do with her.

Cassander just rolled his eyes and scoffed at these men. These men never had a woman come near their cocks unless they dangled gold in front of them. He was sure the whore's make them pay extra.

The two guards finished laughing when they came to a stop at Cassander's cell. The two men leered at him warningly as the fat guard took his jingling iron keys from the clip on his leather belt to unlock the cell door and open it.

"Master Kraznys has summoned you to guard him while he presents the Unsullied," The fat guard informed Cassander. "He says you are to be washed and presentable, so hurry up, your Master does not like waiting."

Cassander began to slowly walk over toward the open gate. The guards stepped back cautiously and kept their hands on the hilt of their swords when he moved closer to them. He glared at the two for a moment before stepping over the doorway.

The skinnier guard stepped toward Cassander and brandished a pair of iron manacles that he was tasked to place on Cassander's outstretched wrists before leading him out of the cells and through the narrow hallway.

The crowd above them erupted into a deafening thunder of applause, signaling the end of the fight, and another life taken for this senseless amusement.

The guards came to a sudden halt and grabbed Cassander's shoulder to stop him as well when the heavy iron gate blocking the portcullis creaked and groaned awake as the cranks turned to lift the heavy barrier that stood between them and the arena.

Cassander watched as two men dragged a headless body by the chains they hooked into the skin of the legs of the poor bastard that lost his life.

A third man walked through the portcullis, in his hands is the blood dripping severed head that he quickly recognized as Tizam, one of his Master's fighters and one of the few men here that he considered a friend in this hell.

"Haha! Take a look at your friend!" The fat guard pointed toward the small group of guards dragging away Tizam's desecrated body. "Looks like he finally got his freedom."

Anger began to flood his very being as he watched the men laugh at the fallen slave. Cassander listened to them in their Valyrian tongue how funny it was to watch how he died and that he didn't stand a chance against his opponent.

Of course, he didn't stand a chance, Cassander thought angrily to himself. The other guy is a seven-foot ogre of a man!

He closed his eyes and exhaled a deep breath. God's, how did my life come to this?

He remembered that day, his last day in Westeros…

Two years ago.

Five days after the execution of Eddard Stark…

Two Knights of the Kingsguard dragged Cassander from the black cells he previously shared with Ned Stark until the late Lord lost his head by the orders of his horrid brother Joffrey and took him to the throne room. A week on the throne and his brother already plunged the Seven Kingdoms into war.

The throne room was empty, apart from his brother sitting smugly on the Iron Throne, his Kingsguard along with the Hound standing in a straight line at the bottom of the steps in front of the throne, their mother Cersei sitting in a plush red velvet chair a step below the throne and the few members of the small council that remained in Kings Landing.

"I haven't seen the throne room this empty in a long time," said Cassander, his voice hoarse and dry from lack of water he received during his imprisonment. He scratched his nose, causing the manacles on his wrist to jingle as he moved his hands. "Did the other Lords already denounce your ability to be King?"

Joffrey shifted in his seat, as if he was about to stand and say something but decided not to give in.

"I thought it would be better to hand out your punishment privately." Joffrey said, trying to sound commanding to him.

Cassander knew that this wasn't his brother's idea. Joffrey hated him, it isn't like him to not turn his execution into a spectacle for all to see. Ned Stark's execution was a perfect example. Now, the kingdoms were at war. No, it was perhaps their mother or Varys who wanted this a private matter, to keep the crown from gaining more enemies than they already have. Cassander was well-liked by the people and to see the Prince be executed would call him a martyr and use his death as the rallying cry of the common folk to stand up against the crown.

"Did you, really?" Cassander sarcastically sounded surprised. He turned to look at his mother but the Queen did not give him as much as a glance. She either looked down or towards his brother on the throne. "Well, I must thank you then. It would have been rather embarrassing for me if people saw me begging for my life before you take my head."

Cassander looked around and noticed something amiss.

"Where's Ser Illyn?" he looked around again and still couldn't find the royal executioner anywhere in the large room. The prince looked up to his brother. "Isn't he going to kill me or are you going to have Clegane attack me instead?" he nodded to his brother's sworn shield standing a small distance from the throne Joffrey sat upon.

"No brother, I am not going to execute you. Neither is Ser Illyn nor is my dog."

Cassander looked at his younger brother, stunned at what he heard. He spent the days he was imprisoned ready to die, yet here he stood being told by Joffrey no less that he wasn't going to be executed after all.

"What you committed is treason and punishable by death—"

"It wasn't treason and you know it. I now have a claim to the throne, as father wanted. You are not the rightful King."

Joffrey stood up suddenly, his crown fell off his head rolled onto the floor. "I AM THE KING YOU TREASONOUS CUNT!"

Cersei quickly got up and picked up her son's crown. She went over to her fuming son and placed his crown back on his head and rubbed his back to calm him down.

"Sweetheart, calm down now," she told Joffrey gently. "Sit back down and let's continue this hearing, alright?"

Joffrey huffed as he nodded and sat back on the throne that seemed much too large for him. His brother never looked more like a child than he did now.

Cassander couldn't help but roll his eyes at the two. It was just like his mother, to care for Joffrey every time he was in a mood.

"As I said before I was so rudely interrupted, you will not be executed brother." A smirk crept on his smug face that made Cassander feel a bit uneasy. "After the traitor Stark's execution and the response that came from it, we have agreed on a better punishment for you instead. One that will not create another martyr."

None of this sounded like Joffrey. It was far too sensible to come from his brother. However, it does sound like something Cersei would say.

"You are to be sold off."

"What!" Cassander responded outraged at what he heard his brother say. "What do you mean 'sold off'?"

The smirk on Joffrey's face only got wider as he watched his brother look more upset.

"It means exactly what I said. You are to be sold off to the Slave Market in Essos. Personally, I wanted to kill you and put your head on a spike beside Stark's for being the traitor that you are. I would love nothing more than to see your head there."

"However, your brother the council and I thought it would be better that you not be killed here," Cersei continued for Joffrey, finally speaking to her eldest son from her seat beside the throne. "It wouldn't look so well for Joffrey so early in his reign. So, it has been decided by the small council the King and myself to sell you to a slaver from Essos where you will live the rest of your days as their slave for your punishment for what you have done."

Cassander couldn't believe what he was hearing. He couldn't believe his mother would agree to something like this. He knew she didn't love him like her other three children but he was still her child as well. She had to have some love for him deep within her heart.

"Mother," he muttered to her. She didn't respond and looked away when he addressed her, so he spoke louder. "Mother! Look at me!

Cersei finally moved her green eyes to him, the same eyes as her distraught son before her. For the first time in a long time, he saw tears welling up in her eyes. She kept that same stern look of hers but he could see the light tears forming in the corners of her almond-shaped eyes.

"Mother, please don't do this," Cassander told her as calmly as he could, tears of his own beginning to fall down his cheeks. "I am your son."

"I know you are my son," she said softly to him. "But you…you acted against the crown...against your own family. That cannot go unpunished."

"I did what I thought was in the best interest of Westeros! For our family!" Cassander exclaimed loudly, hoping that his mother would understand why he did what he did. "I wanted to avoid this war, to stop it from happening!"

Cassander turned his hateful glare to his brother.

"But you…you had to execute Ned Stark and now the entire North has risen against the crown! against you! Congratulations brother, in the span of a week being King you plunged the Seven Kingdoms into civil war. You must be so proud of yourself."

Joffrey was about to say something when Cersei intervened between the siblings.

"The Starks started this war when they took your uncle Tyrion captive, your own flesh and blood before they turned you against your own family," Cersei exclaimed as if it justified her actions. "Ned Stark had admitted to these crimes before his execution—"

"He lied!" Cassander hollered, his voice ringing throughout the spacious empty throne room. "He lied because he was promised a life of exile and the safety of his daughters! All because he found the truth about—"

"ENOUGH!" The Queen mother yelled, her shimmering emerald eyes glared warningly at her eldest boy as he stood silenced by the sudden change of tone. "That has nothing to do with what you did. You committed high treason, a crime punishable by death but for you Cassander, we have decided to be lenient because, despite everything, you are family."

Cassander scoffed in response to his mother's words. His mother didn't know the meaning of the word family, this situation being a perfect example.

"So, how are you going to get away with this?" Cassander asked with a slight chuckle to his shaky voice, the question directed at his mother. "I am a Prince! I am also the heir to Casterly Rock! You cannot honestly believe that my absence will go unnoticed, especially by Lord Tywin."

"Everyone that is of note will know where you have gone," Cersei responded to her son's words with her trademark smirk as she looked down upon Cassander. "That you, by our mercy have been granted what you wished, to leave Westeros and have taken a ship across the Narrow Sea to live out the rest of your days in exile in Essos. You have already packed to leave."

"What I wished?" Cassander muttered the words in a low voice. How does she know that I wanted to leave? How does she even know I had already packed my things?

Then it hit him. There was only one other person that knew of his plans to leave before all of this happened and that person stood behind his mother.

"You told her?" Cassander snarled angrily at Lord Varys.

The Master of Whispers remained unflinching where he stood, even still when Cassander tried to charge at him for betraying him. The Kingsguard that brought him in restrained Cassander before he could go too far.

"Do you honestly think your father will believe that I was exiled? I am his heir. He will send out search parties to look for me and will find out sooner or later where I really am."

"Not if we are in charge of the search for you," Cersei snickered her response. "Your grandfather will look to us to search for you and when he eventually tires from the search, he will look to another to replace you, perhaps Tommen will become heir to Casterly Rock, and you, my son, will fade from memory and be forgotten by all."

Cersei motioned for one of the Kingsguard to open one of the doors on the side and invite a man into the throne room.

The man clearly wasn't from Westeros, that much Cassander was certain. He was a short fat man with dark olive skin that wore a light green robe that danced around his feet with each step he took. He was accompanied by two tall bulky men wearing armor that stayed behind him.

"Your Grace, your Grace," the man said, addressing both Joffrey and Cersei as he bowed as far as his fat belly would allow him. "My name is Omdek zo Luqizn, I believe Lord Baelish has spoken to you about me."

"Yes, he has," Cersei spoke softly to the newcomer, faking a smile to him. "I believe everything is in order?"

"Yes, it is your Grace," the short man smiled, revealing two gold teeth shining in his wide mouth. "All we require now is the boy, and then we will be on our way."

"Good good, now let's make this official shall we" Joffrey smiled as he stood up from the throne and cleared his throne. "Cassander Baratheon, for your crimes of treason by conspiring with Lord Eddard Stark to denounce my claim to the throne and take the crown for yourself to assume the title of King, I Joffrey of Houses Baratheon and Lannister, first of my name, King of the seven kingdoms and protector of the realm strip you of your title of prince and any claims that come with the title and banish you from this country. Should you ever step on this land again, you will be executed. May the Gods have mercy on your new life, brother."

Joffrey nodded to the foreign man. The foreigner snapped his fingers and his two bodyguards marched over to Cassander.

When the two men grabbed him, Cassander struggled from their strong grasp in a final attempt to escape. Just as he was about to be freed he felt a quick sharp blow his head and fell to the hard stone floor, dazed and lightheaded. The guards picked him up again now that he wasn't struggling anymore.

Cassander looked around as his sight came back to focus and saw the man, Omdek zo Luquizn, standing with a wooden baton in his hands. Knowing that he could not escape now, he turned back to his mother and brother, a look of pure anger and hatred clearly expressed on his face.

"You better pray to the Gods that I die out there," Cassander imparted his family, his menacingly calm voice trembling with the fury he felt, each word getting louder and louder. "Because I will come back! DO YOU HEAR ME?! I SWEAR TO THE OLD GOD'S THE NEW GOD'S AND EVERY FUCKING GOD OUT THERE, I SWEAR I WILL COME BACK AND KILL EVERY ONE OF YOU!"

The last thing Cassander saw was his mother standing before he felt a second painful blow to his head before being knocked unconscious.

A cold wave of water splashed over him, waking Cassander from his unconsciousness. His body shivered from the freezing cold as another splash of salty seawater hit his back and he realized he was in the bowels of a ship. The rocking ship smelled terrible with the mixture of piss and shit mingled with the stench of vomit and the salty air of the ocean they were sailing on.

He looked up to find that his hands were still in manacles hooked to the low ceiling. Frantically, he began to pull his hands down, trying to break the binding but to no avail. After a while, he gave up and looked around his surroundings and found a dozen or so men and women in the same predicament as him.

"Good to see yer alive. Thought yeh were dead fer a while there." Cassander heard a gruff voice and turned his gaze ahead of him to find a man staring back at him. "Don't wanna be travelin' with a dead body fer the next few weeks. Those fuckers barely come down here teh feed us let alone deal with a dead body."

"How long have I been out?" he asked the man. A splash of freezing water washed over him again making gasp at the coldness that felt like daggers stabbing at his back.

"A few days," the man answered him. He looked at Cassander up and down, examining closely. "Fancy lookin' clothes yer wearing. Must be a Lord's bastard, eh boy? Your Lord father got tired of takin' care of yeh'?"

"No," Cassander responded briskly, "I am a Prince, son of the late King Robert Baratheon."

The man stared at him silently for a moment before cackling a raspy laugh.

"Oh yeah? Then I am the God of fuckin' tits and wine. Welcome to slavery, my Prince."

xXx

xXx

One of the guards shoved Cassander forward, interrupting his train of thought to make him move again down the long stone hallway.

"Get a move on fucker! We haven't got all day!" The fat guard snarled and butted the handle of his whip on the back of Cassander's head causing him to stumble a few steps forward.

Cassander turned back around to the fat guard and glared at him menacingly. His taller and stronger physique shadowed over the guard's shorter fatter stature.

Cassander could see the fear in the fat guard's expression as he stared him down. These two men were cowards, all bark and no bite as they both have been described by all the other slave fighters and even the other guards as well.

The skinnier guard unlatched the wooden bludgeon from his belt and brandished it at Cassander.

"That's enough. Keep walking slave!" the guard warned Cassander as he held out the weapon. "You don't want to explain to Master Kraznys why you got beaten do you?"

Cassander took in a deep breath and exhaled a sigh that gradually calmed him. As much as he wanted to hit both of these men, he knew it wasn't allowed. He is a slave and no longer has any rights, no longer considered a human being. If he struck these men, he would most likely get a beating from his own master or worse be executed, and Cassander did not want to die here as a slave. He won't allow that to happen.

With every ounce of willpower he had, Cassander swallowed that anger and turned forward and continued his march back to his master's palace on the other side of the city.

xXx

xXx

The training yard was alive with the wooden clattering of practice weapons being used by the rest of Master Kraznys' slave fighters as they trained for their upcoming battles. The veterans refining their techniques and the new bloods trying to find which weapons and style best suits them under the guidance of the trainer Master Kranznys hired for the task.

Cassander marched across the yard with four of the five other fighters that joined him in the pits that day. Tizam was the only man to die from his fight.

The other fighters took notice of their arrival and greeted them with cheers and banged their weapons on their shields on the sand-covered floor, a greeting all fighters are treated to when arriving victoriously.

One of the fighters, young man named Aros and the only other friend Cassander has made during his enslavement. Aros is the same age as Cassander with slightly darker skin than him and short dark brown hair caught up with the young fighter and walked beside him.

"Tizam didn't make it?" Aros asked Cassander as he walked with his practice sword resting on his shoulder and wooden shield hanging low on his left arm.

Cassander responded with a shake of his head to his friend. "Those fuckers paired him to fight against that beast Lyseo. Can you believe it? It wasn't even a fair fight."

Aros cursed loudly in his native tongue and threw down his practice weapons onto the sand.

"Tizam was a good man," Aros responded when he calmed down from the news of his deceased friend. "We will all drink in his honor as all fighters are honored when they die. His name will not soon be forgotten."

Aros has been a slave fighter much longer than Cassander and has been fighting in the pits since he was sixteen. This life, losing friends to the pits was something that Aros has gotten used to but for Cassander, it was still a new feeling that he has yet to get used to himself. Drinking to Tizam's memory wasn't what he wanted.

"It's good that you're back though," Aros told him as the two walked through the archway that led to the cells. "I wouldn't have expected anything less from Alcides, Death's Bastard."

Cassander knew his friend was trying to cheer him up, but the death of another close friend was weighing too heavy on him. Usually, he was paired with Tizam in their fights and this one would have been no different but for some unknown reason his master wanted them separated and fight on their own. Something told Cassander that there was gold involved in this sudden change, it usually was.

Cassander felt a hand on his shoulder that made him stop walking any further. He turned around to see Aros staring back at him, a look of concern upon his dirt-smeared face.

"I am sorry about Tizam, I truly am," Aros responded honestly. "He was a great friend and he will be missed dearly but we can be assured in knowing he is free from this place as we all hope to be."

"Thank you, brother," Cassander gave his friend a quick reassuring smile to his friend. "You're right. Tizam is now free of this hell. I just hope I can avenge his death someday."

With those final words, the two parted ways as Cassander walked to his room and Aros went back to the training yard to finish the day's training.

Cassander's quarters is a small square room big enough for a small bed, a table and chair and a water basin to wash himself with a small damp rag hanging from the basin's edge. He and a scant few of his master's fighters were granted their own personal chambers away from the other general rabble of slave fighters that shared their cells with each other. A small gesture of kindness Kraznys shows his favorite fighters. Truthfully, it was a way to make them feel better about being a slave and risking their lives for the sake of their master's entertainment and want them to remain a slave by making them feel they are a cut above the rest.

Cassander had washed himself clean from the blood sweat and dirt from the days fight and removed the dirty clothes to replace them with a thin grey sleeveless tunic that covered the brand of his master's family tattooed into the skin on his chest in black ink, and faded black cotton trousers and slipped on a pair of dark brown leather boots that stopped just below his knees.

The armor he wore is a sturdy black leather body armor that covered his torso with a single steel pauldron strapped to his left shoulder. His arms and shins were protected by leather bracers and greaves plated with steel for that extra protection.

The wooden door of his small room opened as he adjusted the slave collar around his neck when one of his master's personal house guards walked in, telling him to hurry. When he stepped outside, the guard passed Cassander his weapons, two swords, nothing extravagant to the eye but sharp enough to cut through the thickest man in half like butter, and that suited him just fine.

Cassander took the swords and placed them through the leather straps on the back of his armor where they rested crossing each other before making his way into the palace to meet with his master.

xXx

xXx

Even close to the endless clear blue ocean, the late midday air still felt hot and thick with moisture as the sun beamed down on Cassander when he stood behind his owner, Master Kraznys mo Nakloz, a bald repulsive man that treated his slaves like dirt. Beside him stood his master's other slave, a young pretty woman no older than Cassander named Missandei. She has the honor of being Kraznys' personal translator.

Kraznys let out an annoyed sigh as he paced about.

"How long is this bitch going to keep me waiting?" The master spat in his gruff native tongue. "I have a mind to leave —"

"Master, there she is," Cassander interrupted his Master's before he could rant any further. Normally, he would have been punished for that, but there was no time and the slaver was too occupied with searching for the Mother of Dragons in the bustling plaza.

Cassander pointed ahead and his master's beady black eyes followed where they found her, Daenerys Targaryen, the Dragon Queen walking towards them.

She wasn't hard to find. Her long silvery blonde hair, a common trait in her family, glistened in the sunlight that made her stand out amongst the other people going about their day.

Daenerys Targaryen was beautiful beyond words, Cassander admitted to himself as she walked closer towards them. Her long silvery blonde hair danced in the ocean's strong breeze around her serious yet lovely face and her curvy hips naturally swayed from side to side on her petite slender body as she marched over to them.

Cassander shifted his green-eyed gaze from the ethereally beautiful woman to the two men in her small entourage she brought with her.

He first examined the man walking on her right, a gruff-looking balding middle-aged man that wore a breastplate with a bear insignia in the center that Cassander recognized as the bear of House Mormont.

This must be Ser Jorah Mormont, he thought to himself, remembering hearing about him during the small council meetings he attended when he sat in for his father, which was on a regular basis. He has never met the man in person as he was exiled at the time but Varys alone had met the man on many occasions and kept in contact with him on a regular basis sharing information with the rest of the council on the remaining Targaryens.

Cassander turned his attention to the other man. His eyes widened in disbelief as he watched the man on the Dragon Queens left.

The man's face looked more aged and wrinkled since Cassander last saw him and he was no longer clean-shaven with a short thick white beard covering his jaw and cheeks but Cassander could never forget the face of one of Westeros' most famous Knights and the man that had taught him to swordfight. He could never forget the face of Ser Barristan Selmy, or Barristan the bold as he is commonly known.

He didn't think he'd ever see Ser Barristan again since he was dismissed as Commander of the Kingsguard or anyone else from his former life for that matter. Of all the places, I find him here in Astapor, with the Mother of Dragons no less.

A sudden thought came to mind. He didn't want to be seen like this, a slave protecting his slaver, especially by a familiar face but there was no place for him to hide.

"Mother of Dragons! Welcome to Astapor!" Kraznys greeted the newcomers with a fake smile when the small group caught up with them.

Missandei spoke to them to translate their master's words to the Targaryen girl.

Cassander kept his head lowered but as soon as he looked up, he saw the famous knight staring back at him wide-eyed. Ser Barristan took a sudden step forward and opened his mouth to speak but stopped when Cassander discreetly put a hand up and made a shushing motion with his finger to keep the aged knight from speaking. The old knight seemed reluctant but gave the former prince the briefest of nods and turned to follow the now moving group to the other side of the Plaza of Pride where the Unsullied were being kept.

Kraznys the entire walk boasting about the Unsullied as they crossed through the crowded Plaza of Pride. Cassander stayed behind his master, as he should, with Missandei staying close to their master to make sure she could hear everything Kraznys was saying.

Daenerys Targaryen walked beside their master and listened, or at least tried to listen to what Missandei translated for her. She seemed too preoccupied with the people around her to listen to the young slave. The young Queen watched the city's nobles strutting like they owned the world while their slaves cowered behind them like broken dogs and kept their heads down to avoid any eye contact so as to not anger their masters.

Ser Jorah kept a close eye on the young woman he had sworn his life to and stayed close behind her. Too close, in Cassander's opinion. The exiled knight kept a hand on the hilt of his sword, anticipating any unexpected attack that could happen. Cassander could understand why. This young girl has spent her entire life being hunted down by assassins sent to kill her and her brother, most of them were from his father. Her life is always in danger, even more so since she now has three dragons in her possession. People from all over the world would kill her just to have her dragons. Constant vigilance was the only way she would be safe.

Cassander kept a good distance between himself and his master as Kraznys discussed the well-known warriors. Kraznys didn't like being followed too close which was fine with Cassander. The feeling was very mutual.

At times, Cassander noticed Daenerys would at times have an annoyed look whenever Master Kraznys said something before Missandei could translate it that made him swear she could understand what the slaver was saying to her and about her. That man really needs to stop calling her a bitch and a whore.

"It's good to see you again Ser Barristan," Cassander muttered just loud enough for the old Knight to hear. The rest of the group was a good distance ahead and with the loud noise of the plaza all around them, there was no way they could be heard by the others.

"I could say the same thing, my Prince." The gruff old Knight retorted with the smallest hint of a smile hidden beneath his thick white beard.

The younger man chuckled. "Selmy, you don't have to call me Prince. I no longer have the honor to carry that title anymore. Just call me by my new name, Alcides."

Ser Barristan turned to him with confusion on his aged face.

"Alcides?"

Cassander nodded in confirmation.

"My mother's only request for the slave master in order to cover her tracks. It wouldn't look well for my brother's young reign if the people found out that he and my mother sold me into slavery. For the past two years, my name has been Alcides."

"I'm so sorry, Cassander—I mean, Alcides."

The two men quickly stopped their conversation when Ser Jorah turned around for a moment and glanced over at them. He frowned at the two suspiciously before returning to the young Queen he stood beside.

"I have to say, this is the last place I would imagine seeing the famous Ser Barristan the bold." Cassander said once he knew they were not being watched. "Last I heard, you were rewarded with retirement from your duties as Lord Commander and gifted with a Castle."

Even from down below in his cell, Cassander overheard from his guards about Barristan's release from his duties and how the famous Knight didn't take it so well. It was understandable, his whole life as a Knight had been dedicated to protecting and serving the royal family. To simply be tossed away did not sit well with the man.

"I also heard that you threw your sword at Joffrey," Cassander continued. "That you threw it so far that you nearly took his head off."

The older man chuckled at hearing the rumor about him and that day. One of many that had been said about his brazen exit.

A group of people walking through the busy market had stepped in between the two, dividing them both for a moment while they passed by.

"Your brother wasn't worth losing my life." Barristan muttered to the former Prince to his side once they managed to stand by each other once again. "But he seemed adamant to have my head after my display in the throne room."

"Let me guess, he sent someone after you?" Cassander smirked, knowing very well how his brother worked. He would never do the dirty work so he pays off someone to do it for him, just like their mother taught him.

"As a matter of fact, he did." Barristan confirmed. "He commanded Janos Slynt and a few Gold Cloaks to come after me." A sly smile appeared behind the man's thick white beard. "I killed two of the men and the coward Slynt rode off with what remained of his group. Then I got out of the city before more men were sent to kill me."

"Then you found a Targaryen." Cassander said as he nodded to the Mother of Dragons some ways ahead of them being talked to by Kraznys and translated by Missandei. "Another to serve and protect. I must say, for someone who should be retired you are certainly busy."

Ser Barristan let out a deep chuckle. "What can I say? I am a Knight and a Knights duties end when they are dead and I feel like I have a lot of life still in me."

"I could say the same for you as well." Ser Barristan continued, taking notice of Cassander's new station as a slave fighter. "How did you—"

"It's a long story," Cassander interrupted the knight, a frown becoming prominent on the stoic face he wore. He remembered that Ser Barristan was already gone when his banishment to this hell of a life was sentenced on him. "One that I do not wish to recant."

The Knight seemed to have understood the feelings going through Cassander and decided not to pry any further. The former Prince was never one to reveal his feelings to others but the Knight figured out long ago how to read the boy.

"I'm sorry for that day—in the throne room when you came in with Lord Stark—"

"You have nothing to apologize for, Selmy." Cassander responded, knowing of the day the Knight spoke of. "You were only doing your duty."

"And because of that, you ended up here." Barristan swiftly retorted. If Cassander hadn't known better, that day has been plaguing the older man's life for the last two years. It was obvious that Barristan had regretted not acting on Cassander's behalf when he had the chance but it wasn't his fault. Cassander held no blame for the man as he did what he was supposed to do.

"My actions brought me here, Selmy." the younger man asserted. "You have nothing to do with me ending up here."

Their walk suddenly became quiet between the two of them as they continued through the blazing hot market to the location where the Unsullied were kept. Cassander could hear his master boast about the Unsullied to the young Queen in the attempt to prove they are worth the costly price.

"But I can do something to get you out of here. To get your freedom."

The young man quickly turned his head. The shocked expression on his face was clear for the former commander of his father's Kingsguard to see. He didn't say anything as he took a moment to comprehend what he heard. For over the past two years, he has lived enslaved to a terrible man, dreaming of the day he would win his freedom. Now after all this time, it could happen. But there was a problem that stood in the way of his freedom. There is always something in his way.

"Selmy, I appreciate the offer but...but my master will not let me go." Cassander explains to the Knight. "As one of his fighters, I am something of worth to him, despite what he might say. He will not simply give away one of his best fighters."

"Then we will have to find a price he is willing to accept for you."

"How" Cassander stuttered when he finally spoke again.

"I will speak with her Grace," Ser Barristan proposed to him. "She could use someone like you by her side."

The knight sounded so confident as he said the words, that Cassander thought it was already a done deal. However, a feeling of unease swirled in the pit of his stomach as he realized another problem.

"My father is the reason she has to raise an army to gain back her family's legacy. She has to fight against my family to take the Iron Throne from them." Cassander muttered. Though he strove to be as opposite of his family, Cassander knew that he couldn't completely change who he is, a Baratheon and Lannister, both families that rebelled against her family, his father who killed her brother Rhaegar with a swing of his Warhammer and his uncle who killed her father. "I doubt Daenerys Targaryen would allow me to live much less join her army. Your duty is to her now, not me and I will not have you jeopardize your position for my sake. You have no obligation to help me, so forget about me, Ser Barristan."

Cassander could feel Barristan's stunned gaze as he walked away to stand closer to his master. It could be a mistake to refuse Ser Barristan's proposal for freedom but it wasn't foolproof. So many things could go wrong for Cassander that he couldn't take that chance. All he could do is continue to fight for his life and wait for another opportunity for freedom to arise.

The former Prince couldn't help but gaze at the young beautiful exotic Queen from time to time as they walked through the plaza to the area where the Unsullied were stationed for viewing. He heard about her beauty from others who have seen her but their descriptions do not do her justice. Seeing her here, right now, Cassander truly couldn't believe how gorgeous she is. He's met many beautiful women, in court and as a slave, but none of them compared to the woman before him, examining the army of Unsullied standing at attention.

At one point, Cassander found the Targaryen Queen's bright amethyst eyes wander towards him occasionally herself. Cassander quickly looked away, staring anywhere else as if he was examining the perimeter and stood taller to make himself look more professional. Even looking away from her, he could still feel her eyes on him, inspecting him up and down.

Daenerys quickly averted her eyes when she heard Kraznys ask her a question.

"The good Master Kraznys asks if you think they are magnificent," Missandei asked her as they walked down the long row of Unsullied to make their way to the terrace ahead. The Unsullied remained silent and still as statues in their full armor and holding their round shield in one hand and a long spear in the other.

"They may be able to suit my needs." Daenerys answered back as she studied the motionless men around her. She turned back to Cassander, who refused to make eye contact with her.

"You." Cassander knew the young Queen was calling to him. Slowly, he turned his green gaze back to her serious yet calm expression. "What is your name?"

The young Queen waited for a response that Cassander was hesitant to answer. He glanced over to his master who looked annoyed that one of his slaves was being acknowledged.

"This one's name is Alcides, your Grace." Cassander finally answered her question. She eyed him a moment, taking in his stern expression and tall professional stance.

"What do you think of these soldiers?" She asked him, ignoring Kraznys' cursing as one of his slaves was asked their opinion on the Unsullied. "Are they as good as your master claims they are?"

Before Cassander could utter a word, Kraznys interrupted the conversation.

"Tell the Dragon whore to ignore him and get back to the matter at hand. I haven't got all day to deal with her." Missandei nodded in response before turning back to her master's potential patron.

"Master Kraznys implores that you do not speak to him. He is only a slave. If you have any questions regarding the Unsullied he would be more than happy to answer them for you."

"He appears to be more than just a slave if the good master trusts him enough to carry weapons and protect his life."

A hint of a smile crossed his lips as Cassander stood there watching his master grow more irritated with the girl.

"He fights for me in the Pits. That makes him more than a common slave, true." Master Kraznys replied arrogantly. "But still a slave."

"Then he is a fighter, is he not?" Daenerys questioned after hearing Missandei's watered-down version of their Master's dialogue. "I only wanted an opinion from another warrior."

Kraznys huffed in annoyance as he wiped the sweat from his bald head with a small cloth bunched in his hand. He wasn't used to having a patron so… opinionated, especially when it's a woman.

"This Westerosi whore needs to hurry up and make her decision already and not worry about the opinions of slaves."

Cassander rolled his eyes. He was tired of how his Master was talking to her. He was tired of his Master all together.

Missandei was about to speak when Cassander intervened and cleared his throat as he stepped forward into the crowd.

"It would be a wise move to purchase the Unsullied," Cassander began explaining. Daenerys stared at him, her amethyst gaze watched him intently as he continued to speak.

"Their fighting skills are unbound. They learn from a young age and the continuous training they go through keeps their skills sharp. This one personally has seen them in action and can assure you they will be money well spent."

Cassander glanced at his Master. The man glared daggers with his beady black eyes at his slave's insubordination but Cassander didn't care and turned his gaze back to the young woman before him and continued onward.

"Besides fighting, obedience is the only other thing they know. The Unsullied will follow any order you give them to the letter. They would kill themselves if you ordered them, without a second thought. They will not rape or go rogue and disobey your orders, a chance that might happen should you hire mercenaries or other soldiers of fortune. All questions have been taken away from them. Once they are yours, they belong to you. The Unsullied will not follow anyone else so long as they are under your command."

When he finished speaking, Cassander waited for the young Queen to give her answer. She just stood there for a bit, still looking at him. Her expression remained the same stern serious expression she had the whole time, giving him no hint of her decision.

"And that is your honest opinion?" Daenerys asked him sternly, finally speaking.

Cassander nodded his head. "It is, your Grace. They will do whatever task they were ordered to do, even if they knew it was impossible."

The young Queen watched him for a few moments as if trying to see if he was being truthful or not until she turned away from him and gave her attention to Missandei.

"Tell the good Master I appreciate the time he took for me today and showed me the Unsullied." Daenerys kindly told the young female slave.

"Tell him I will come back tomorrow with my final decision." Missandei nodded and translated the young Targaryen's words for the nobleman.

Kraznys nodded in agreement before bidding her good evening and ordered his two slaves to follow back to his palace.

The three bowed to the young Queen before departing to make their way through the Plaza of Pride.

When Cassander walked past Ser Barristan, he gave him a quick nod and the old knight did the same before he gave Cassander a sorrowful look before slowly turning back to follow his Queen to the docks. As much as Cassander wanted to follow the Knight he has known all of his life, he knew

Watching the Knight depart, Cassander couldn't help but miss Barristan. For two years he has lived in this unfamiliar place with unfamiliar people and finally he reunites with someone that he has known all of his life and for a brief moment he felt happy, something he hadn't felt in a long time, and now he was gone and with him, his happiness went as well.

xXx

xXx

The sun had already begun to set when Ser Barristan Daenerys Targaryen and Ser Jorah arrived back onto their ship docked in the harbor. Once they got back onto the small ship, the old knight went down below to his small cabin to rest.

As he lay there on his small cot, he thought about the young man he has watched grow up. He couldn't believe he found Cassander, here in Astapor. He had heard rumors that Cassander was banished after his unsuccessful attempt to take the throne from his brother but he never realized what they truly did to him.

Cassander looks so much like his father, the old knight thought to himself. Though the boy indeed looked a lot like his father physically, he couldn't be more different from the man. That mop of black hair had grown long and unruly as the boy grew taller himself. Cassander didn't have his father's broad build, no, he was lean built like his mother's side of the family, the Lannister side. Cassander had the same emerald green colored eyes of his mother's as well.

Cassander was no longer the boy he used to watch over for seventeen years. That boyish face he had was now marred with scars and bruises from his past fights he was forced to endure and a scruffy dark beard covered his strong squared jaw that was once kept clean-shaven.

The cheerful smile that Cassander always had was gone, being a slave and forced to kill other people must be weighing down heavily on the young man.

What shocked the man, even more, was the young man's refusal for help. It seems as if Cassander has lost hope that something good could happen to him.

Barristan wants to change that. All the knight could think about was how to get Cassander out of this terrible life that his mother and brother sold him into. He owed him that much.

Ser Barristan thought that he could have stopped all this from happening, back in the throne room two years ago. He could have at least tried to help the young Prince stand up against his mother and brother that day.

That boy looked up to me as a hero and I couldn't save him the one time he truly needed me. If I had just spoken up and defended Cassander, he wouldn't be here as a slave, Ser Barristan thought to himself as he stared up at the wooden ceiling above him. Now, I have the chance to save him and I will not fail him this time.

A quick rap on the door took the old knight from his thoughts and got up from the cot to cross over and open the door.

Ser Barristan stepped back in mild surprise to see Ser Jorah standing in the doorway.

"The Queen has called a meeting, she requires your presence right away," The exiled knight informed Ser Barristan.

Before he could respond, Ser Jorah turned away and walked back up the wooden steps to the deck.

The way Ser Jorah had spoken to him just now, he sounded indifferent toward him. It wasn't an uncommon occurrence between the two of them. Ser Jorah didn't hide his dislike toward the former commander of Robert Baratheon's Kingsguard, especially when it was just the two of them.

Ser Barristan gave a heavy sigh before walking through the doorway and followed the other knight to the deck of the ship.

The Queen wasn't in her cabin. Instead, she took solace in the open air of the deck. She leaned forward, her slender arms resting on the wooden guard rails of the ship as she looked out to the dark purple sky. The sun slowly descends behind the wide horizon of the vast ocean.

Ser Jorah took his place by her side, protecting her.

The heavy footsteps of the old Knights boots caught the young woman's attention as she turned to the newcomer.

"Your Grace," Ser Barristan formally greeted her with a bow. "You sent for me?"

The young Queen nodded. "I know that you are not too fond of the Unsullied. But now that you have seen them in person and heard of their skills, I hoped that you might have a change of heart about them now."

Ser Barristan didn't like the idea of purchasing slaves. That's what it will be if Daenerys gets her unsullied. If the people of Westeros were ever to find out about this, it wouldn't look good for her.

She herself isn't sure of these soldiers. She too knows that she will be buying slaves, making her no better than the others. However, unlike the others, he knew that she wouldn't mistreat them or wouldn't keep them as slaves. Once she gets them, he knows that she would give them their freedom.

"I do not like the idea of purchasing people to fight for a cause that isn't theirs," Ser Barristan began slowly, choosing his words carefully. "However, they are a means to an end. If what that boy says is true of the Unsullied, then I believe they are what you need to begin building your army."

The Queen gave him a nod of approval, a kind smile crossed her gentle face.

"Thank you, Ser Barristan, I appreciate your opinion and have made my decision to purchase them. With the Unsullied fighting for me, I will have a great start on my army."

Ser Barristan nodded in agreement. The three fell silent as they watched the warm distant sun finally vanish under the ocean and the sky changed colors to a dark navy blue with bright stars dotting the darkness above them.

"You know that boy, don't you?" Daenerys asked suddenly, breaking the silence between the three. The old Knight quickly looked between the curious face of his Queen and the confused expression of Ser Jorah. Not knowing how to respond, he remained silent. "Alcides, was his name."

"I noticed you talking to him while we were walking through the Plaza of Pride," She explained kindly, her sweet smile glowed in the bright moonlight.

He couldn't lie to her. He shouldn't lie to her. Ser Barristan didn't want her to get angry when she finds out who Cassander is. However, if he doesn't tell her the truth, she could possibly think he isn't of real importance and ignore him.

I promised to set him free, Ser Barristan told himself. This could be my only chance. The Queen could use a man like Cassander by her side. With the connections he has with the people of Westeros, not to mention their love and respect, he will be more useful to her than her army.

But he is also the son of the man that rebelled against her family. Who forced her and her brother to exile and killed her eldest brother in battle. He doesn't know just how far Dany's leniency can extend.

Finally making a quick decision on what to do, he exhaled a deep breath before responding to his Queen's question.

"Yes your Grace it is true, I know the boy. Very well, actually."

"The old knight paused for a moment, deciding to be careful as he chose his next words. He had to admit, he was getting a bit nervous. He was a great fighter but talking, negotiating and convincing, was never really his strong point.

The young Queen continued to smile at him. She poured some wine into three goblets she had set up on a silver tray atop a barrel beside her. She passed her two Knights each a goblet and all of them took a sip of the delicious fruity wine.

Ser Barristan took a hearty gulp of the sweet wine. I really needed that. The old knight sighed, knowing he had to tell her the truth. It would come out sooner or later and it would be better if he told her himself.

"I've known him for a long time. In fact, I've known him since he was very young. But...his name wasn't Alcides when I knew him."

Ser Jorah paused mid drink, as did Daenerys after hearing his words.

"Who is he?" Daenerys asked, her voice thick with suspicion. The warm kind smile faltered back to a frown on her beautiful face as she glared at her commander of her Queensguard. "Who is that boy, Ser Barristan?"

Ser Barristan rarely had a hard time knowing where his loyalty lied. Mostly because he knew to whom his loyalty belonged. But this time, it was more difficult. If she knew the truth about "Alcides", she might not allow him to join but if he were to lie and it was to be found out, he and Cassander could be punished.

It was a difficult decision to make but he hoped he made the right one when he spoke up.

"His name is Cassander, the trueborn son of Robert Baratheon."

"What!" Ser Jorah exclaimed, outraged at what he had just heard from the other knight but Ser Barristan paid him no mind. It wasn't his opinion that he cared for but the opinion of the Queen before him, silently glaring at him but not uttering a single word.

Daenerys seemed to be deep in thought as she tried to grasp the information given to her.

"Your Grace?" Ser Barristan asked. He couldn't take the tension that surrounded them.

The Queen took a sip of her wine before finally responding to her Knight.

"Why is the son of Robert Baratheon here in Astapor?" she sternly asked him. "Did the Usurper run out of assassins before he died and had to send his own son to kill me? He seems to have hit a snag when he became a slave. Unless that's his cover. It wouldn't be the first."

"He isn't here to kill you, your Grace, I can assure you," Ser Barristan explained to the young woman. "It was his father that held the grudge against your family, not Cassander."

The old knight took a step closer to his Queen but Ser Jorah stepped in his way, blocking his way to Daenerys. The exiled Knights glared at each other as they both stood their ground, trying to intimidate one another.

"Are you sure about that Ser Barristan?" Ser Jorah asked him briskly. "The boy is half Baratheon and half Lannister. Both families committed heinous crimes during the rebellion and the boy carries both their blood in his veins."

"Yes, I am sure." The old Knight stated with a certain confidence. "He might have their blood but he is his own man."

Ser Barristan turned away from the gruff Knight to Daenerys still looking at him with a scolding gaze in her beautiful violet eyes.

"My Queen," Ser Barristan continued when Daenerys remained silent. "I know what you must think of Cassander. His father rebelled against and killed your family. You must think he is another Robert Baratheon but I can say with honesty that he is not like his father, thank the Gods. He does not deserve to have this life, the life of a slave."

"So I should, what? Free him? Have him join my cause to take back the Iron Throne?"

Ser Barristan didn't answer her right away. Even though that was exactly what he was going to say.

"Your Grace, I had hoped that you would consider bringing him into the fold with us."

Daenerys let out a little laugh and Ser Jorah chuckled along with her.

"You are bold indeed Ser Barristan, asking our Queen to allow the spawn of the Usurper to join us. Snow would fall in Dorne before that would ever happen."

Ser Barristan turned back to the young Queen who watched him still.

"He is right Ser Barristan, as are you. His father rebelled against my family. He is the son of the man who killed my brother, a man you have praised on more than one account. You were there, were you not? When my noble brother was killed by that brute of a man?"

"Not only that," Ser Jorah chimed in. "He shares the familial blood with Jaime Lannister, the man who put his sword through the back of our Queen's father, the King he was sworn to protect. His own Grandfather, Tywin Lannister ordered the death of Rhaegar's wife and children and set his mad dog Gregor Clegane to butcher them!"

Ser Barristan remained silent. He couldn't deny all those things as false. Everyone, from as high as the Noble Lords to as low as the homeless peasants knew what had happened near the end of the rebellion. They knew what happened to the Targaryen's that remained in Kings Landing and what the Lannister's had done in the end.

He heard how Robert praised Lord Tywin instead of punishing him for the deaths of Elia Martell and her two children.

"I think Robert Baratheon's son is right where he belongs, Ser Barristan." Daenerys coldly answered the knight.

"No, my Queen. Forgive me for disagreeing with you but Cassander doesn't deserve this life," Ser Barristan exclaimed. The old man is becoming desperate now. "I have to free him from this life."

Dany could see the sadness in his grey eyes. Her hardened serious expression softened as she thought of herself and her family. She was the daughter of King Aerys, second of his name but was commonly known as the Mad King. Her father was crazy and loved to watch people burn alive. His blood ran through her veins, yet she wasn't stricken with the madness that plagued her father. She was living proof that you don't have to be like your family.

"Why do you say that?" Dany asked her Knight before her. "Why do you have to free him?"

"Because, it's my fault that he is here." Ser Barristan answered back somberly. His head lowered and his eyes stared down at the dark damp wood of the deck floor.

"Why is it your fault?" the young Queen asked the knight. "Why is the Prince of the Seven Kingdoms a slave in the first place?"

A moment of silence passed between the three on the deck. Ser Barristan was hesitant to respond to the Queen's question but he knew he could not lie to her about this but he could not very well tell her that Cassander tried to take the throne from his own brother either.

An idea came to him that would ensure that he could, in fact, tell the truth without telling the whole truth to the young Queen.

"Cersei Lannister hated her husband, the King." Ser Barristan began his explanation. "So much so that her hatred extended to her son. All his life, Cassander has had to endure his mother's wrath. I have seen him try his hardest to gain her love that he should not have had to earn but it was never enough for her. Eventually, he stopped trying to please her and follow his own path but that only angered her more. When she could no longer control him, she sent him away to be enslaved."

Daenerys sat in silence, taking in the information Ser Barristan had just given her until she finally spoke up.

"This boy, how can I trust someone like him around me?"

The old knight's head snapped back up to meet the Queen's violet eyes. Her question sounded as if she was trying to make a decision about Cassander. He could feel the sensation of hope filled him as he gazed back at her.

"I have watched Cassander grow since the day he was born. I've watched him grow into one of the finest men I have ever met."

Dany was about to say something when Ser Barristan continued.

"I know you must think he is just like his father. Most people thought so too before they met Cassander. But he is different. He knew what kind of man his father really was and saw how it angered his mother, so he strove to make sure that he never became like his father, and he is indeed very different from him. There were times when I couldn't believe that Cassander was Robert's son."

Daenerys breathed a heavy sigh as the old knight finished his speech for her. She didn't look angry anymore like she did earlier but he could tell she was still unconvinced.

With one last desperate attempt to change her mind, Ser Barristan got down on one knee.

"I would lay down my life, your Grace, to prove that Cassander is a good man and will be useful to your cause."

"You would stake your life on the Usurper's son?" Ser Jorah jeered at him. "Even if the Queen agreed with you, what would she need of a banished Prince?"

"His influence." Ser Barristan answered him shortly. He gave the other knight a quick glare before turning back to the Queen leaning against the wooden railing.

"His influence?" Daenerys repeated. That certainly piqued her interest.

"Yes your Grace," the old Knight nodded and got back up on his feet. "Cassander was loved by the people, Lords and common folk alike. He cared for them and listened to their grievances and helped them as best he could."

Ser Jorah scoffed mockingly but Ser Barristan ignored him, not caring for his opinion. He only cared for one person's opinion and she still remained unconvinced.

The old knight exhaled a deep breath before continuing his attempt to coerce his Queen to see his way.

"You cannot just conquer Westeros and believe the people will follow you, my Queen." Ser Barristan clarified to her. "To them, you are the unknown foreigner attacking them with your army and three dragons. They will see you more as an invader than a Ruler if you don't have the right people supporting you."

"You are a Targaryen. The last Targaryen ruler everyone remembered on the Iron Throne was a mad Targaryen who loved to burn people alive. Westeros will not blindly follow you just because your family built the Iron Throne and ruled the Seven Kingdoms. You will need to make allies, people who believe in your cause if you wish to succeed and Cassander Baratheon is the man that can help you with that."

Daenerys didn't say anything to Ser Barristan and her expression remained calm and free of emotions, giving him no hint of what she could be thinking.

The young Queen turned away from the Knights and looked out to the black sea. She leaned her body forward and relaxed her arms on the railing, crossing them together.

Ser Barristan calmly waited for an answer. He knew it had to be a tough decision for her to make. All her life, Dany was running from Robert Baratheon's assassins. She has no reason or obligation to allow the Usurper's son to join them but she must realize that without the support of Westeros, she cannot rule Westeros. Cassander will be the key to help her gain that support.

The deck was silent. Only the sounds of the strong salty sea breeze whistling around them and the water lapping against the walls of the ship with each passing wave below.

It seemed like a while before Daenerys spoke up.

"All my life, I've had to run because Robert Baratheon sent assassins after my brother and me. I lived every day in fear that that day might be my last, because of his want to completely destroy my family. I was never able to call a home my own. I was constantly running from one city to the next, begging and pleading for food and shelter, because of Cassander's father."

Dany stepped away from the damp railing and walked over to the old Knight. She gently placed a cool hand on the old man's shoulder.

"I admire your dedication to Cassander and I believe that you believe he is a good man...but I could never trust a son of Robert Baratheon. I have had too many people betray me and I will not have it done again. I will find aid elsewhere."

With those final words, she gave her knight one more look before walking away to her cabin. Ser Jorah soon followed suit and made his way toward the steps, leaving Ser Barristan standing alone on the deck.

The old Knight closed his grey eyes and inhaled a deep breath that he exhaled slowly. The feelings of failure and disappointment of being denied filled his body.

Slowly, he stepped forward toward the railing and looked out to the endless black ocean.

"I am so sorry Cassander," the knight said to himself, not caring if he was overheard. "I will get you out of here. So please just…just hang on a little while longer."

Ser Barristan slouched his shoulders as he leaned closer onto the railing and ran his hands through his short snow-white hair in frustration.

Being too engrossed in his own thoughts, the old Knight didn't notice a figure lurking in the shadows behind him, hearing everything the old knight had said and made sure the Master of Whispers was informed of this new development.

xXx

So what do you all think of the new chapter? I admit that not much was changed but I promise that the second chapter and beyond will have greater changes to them.

I have a feeling I am going to be asked why Barristan did not keep Cassander's identity a secret from Dany so I am just going to address it right now. I admit, I was seriously considering doing that and have it revealed in the near future but I looked at the situation long term and I can see it having some serious repercussions that I did not know if I could properly execute it. In all honesty, it seemed too much of an unnecessary hassle that I do not want to deal with. I have a lot of things already planned for the story and writing a subplot about Barristan and Cassander keeping a lie from Dany will take away from that. plus, the story already has a similar plot regarding Jorah keeping the secret about him being a spy for Varys that I am going to do when I get to that part and I do not want to rehash it with my OC.

I have also changed his age from twenty to nineteen. After doing the math, Cassander would actually be at least a year younger than Robb Jon and possibly even Daenerys. Because their actual birthdates are not revealed, I can only go by the year and events that took place near their births to make a guess. From what I have gathered, Robb and Jon are older as they were born near the end of the rebellion in 281 AC and it is stated that Dany was born in the summer of 282 AC, at least according to the wiki page. It did not state how long after did Robert and Cersei marry only that it was right after the rebellion.

One last thing and this is a new addition, I have decided to make Cassander just a margin younger than Joffrey, People were not understanding what I was trying to do with Cassander being the older but lost his claim to the throne and I was tired of constantly explaining it so I am just going to make him older and have true claim to the throne based solely on the fact that he is Robert's true heir. Being the oldest will not be a factor in this story anymore.

As for being younger, there will not be a big age gap between the two. I read online that women can get pregnant as soon as three weeks so in this story, that is how soon after having Joffrey does Cersei get pregnant with Robert. With him being this close in age with Joffrey, they will actually be same age as each other for a few months if I did my math correctly.

So, I believe that is all I have to say about the changes in the first chapter. As I said, it didn't seem like much has changed but I think that this chapter just didn't have too much going on to have changes made but I promise the next chapters will be very different.

I hope that you all enjoyed the chapter and if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave a review or PM me and I will respond as soon as possible.