The Conquest of Westeros.

It was over three hundred years ago that the Targaryens looked East instead of West. Aegon and his sister-wives Rhaenys and Visenya, along with their dragons Balerion the Black Dread, Meraxes, and Vhagar left Dragonstone behind and set their sights on creating an empire. Over the next three centuries, the empire grew from strength to strength and though there was at times talk of looking West, not one Emperor or their offspring did so.

Just over one year ago fate intervened and Prince Aemon, the secondborn son of High Emperor Rhaegar Targaryen was sent into exile and for the first time in its history, Westeros was host to a Dragonknight. Aemon just like the Conqueror himself now set his sights on a domain to call his own. Together with the Red Dragon, Gaelithox the Blood Wyrm, he looked out upon the Seven Kingdoms with but one goal in mind, to bring them all to heel under the banner of one king, one dragon, Aemon the Conqueror.

I know for I was by his side and saw it with mine own eyes.

A history of the conquest of the Dragonknight,

Marwyn the Mage.

Dragonstone 300 AC.

Aemon Targaryen.

For nearly a year he'd sat and basically sulked, spending his nights looking out upon the bay or atop Gaelithox as he flew over it. The red dragon longed to be let loose upon this land, to bring fire to those who dared think themselves above dragons and Aemon knew he was the one holding him back. Why? That was the question, Why was he holding him back? He had not lost his thirst for battle, if anything he longed for it, needed it. It alone was perhaps the only thing that would stop his thoughts from going where they inevitably would.

Had he thought she'd come to him? That she'd follow? Perhaps, but that now seemed to be a wasted thought, a broken dream and one that his apathy and idleness were feeding daily. She would not come. That place in his heart that she filled would remain as empty as it was now and so was it not time to fill the other parts of his heart with what he could? Aemon moved from the window and looked down on the table that Aegon had built all those years earlier before he had set his sights on the East instead of the West. Seven Kingdoms were marked out on one table, his ancestor's goal had been to unite them under his House until it had not.

He climbed up onto the chair that overlooked the table and for the first time in more than a year, Aemon Targaryen wore a smile on his face. The love he sought was never to be his, the respect he wished for was never to be his, the family he hoped for was just a distant dream. It was time to dream about something else and so he did. For the next few days, he spent all of his time looking at the table or flying in the sky. He let Gaelithox let loose his flames when he wished as they both readied for him to bring them down upon the Seven Kingdoms.

Less than a week later he had made his plans and so he sent for the Maester, Marwyn was one of the many men who'd come to Westeros with him upon his exile. The Mage was a strange man, curious and dedicated to learning as much about the dragons and magic as he could and Aemon had helped in that regard more than any, other than his namesake. True he'd not given him all the secrets, even as angry as he was with his family that was not something he'd do but he'd given the man far more than most and so had won his loyalty completely.

"You sent for me, my prince?" Marwyn said when he stepped into the Chamber of the Painted Table as Aurane had named the room, Aemon still getting a chuckle at how his friend thought so irreverently on things that meant so much to his father and brother.

"I did, Marwyn, I need you to send some ravens out for me, to Winterfell and to Dorne and one to Driftmark too."

"At once, my prince." Marwyn said.

"Has Baratheon sent any more threats?" he asked as the Mage was about to leave the room.

"Not in over a moon, my prince." Marwyn said.

"Very well, inform me when Aurane arrives or you receive any replies."

"Of course, my prince." Marwyn said as he left.

Aemon moved to the window and looked out once more, watching as Gaelithox flew alone in the sky and trying not to think on Meraxes and her own rider as he did so. It was an impossible task as almost as soon as he tried to block them both from his mind, he once again saw them as if they were with him and his dragon flying over new skies. Without even knowing that he had done so, he closed his eyes and saw her deep purple ones staring back up at him. Her dark hair was laid out on the bed and the smile he loved so much was on her face. The image was quickly blown away as he then heard the voices and it was as if he was back in that room more than a year earlier. As if today was the day that his love had been torn from him.

Volantis 298 AC.

Aemon Targaryen.

He rode into the city like a conquering hero, Gaelithox had already flown far ahead of him so eager was he to be with Meraxes and the rest of his siblings once more. Beside him, Aurane waved and received the cheers and he saw Torgho Nudho shake his head as he did so. Aemon laughing when he looked at the stoic look on his sworn shield's face. The Unsullied could laugh when he wished to and at times he would, usually when Aurane called him by his common tongue name of Grey Worm and not his Valyrian one of Torgho Nudho.

Today was not going to be a day that he smiled though, especially not the closer they got to the Grand Palace. Aemon let them both celebrate their homecoming in their own way, just as he would later tonight when he could sneak away from the inevitable feast his father would throw him. Four moons was all it had taken, the Dothraki had been beaten and burned and they'd not dare to threaten the empire again, or at least not for a very long time. Looking around at the rest of his men, Aemon could see just how many of them were eager to be back with their loved ones and yet he could not dismiss them until he had presented himself to his father.

"Cheer up, brother, we're heroes once again." Aurane said waving at the crowd and for once Aemon gave in to his brother by choice's good cheer, the crowd cheering even more loudly at the waves he threw them.

When he saw the Grand Palace it amazed him as it always did, the stone rising majestically from the ground and dwarfing even the Black Walls and the Temple of the Red Priests that lay nearest to it. Looking to the large courtyard he bid his men stop and then he rode forward alone. His father, his stepmother, granduncle and uncle, his brother, and aunt were all standing in a line, and then finally he saw her. His sister was standing just a little away from the others, she had a smile on her face and yet she bore an odd look upon it that he couldn't quite place.

"I bring news of great import to the High Emperor." he said and then he waited for his father to give him leave to dismount, doing so quickly once his father had raised his hand.

Aemon moved and took a knee in front of his father. Rhaegar Targaryen, the High Emperor of the Valyrian Empire and the man who'd seen it almost double in size and wealth since his succession. He was everything he wished he could be and everything he knew he was not. His silver hair and deep indigo eyes marked him out as an almost god amongst men and Aemon's own black hair and dark grey eyes were a poor comparison. It was why he'd driven himself to be the general of his father's armies, why he'd sought glory on the battlefield and why he had been fighting since he was two and ten years old. Six years in which he'd risen to be the General of the Second Army, with only his father's own First Army of more significance than his own.

"What news does my son bring me?" his father asked looking at him eagerly.

"Khal Bharbo is fallen, the Dothraki horde is no more." Aemon said reaching into his shirt to take out the braid he'd personally cut from the man's head.

"How many men have fallen, my son, how many of the true sons of the empire were lost?" his father asked and Aemon looked to see the members of the High Council and even The Sword of the Morning himself look his way.

"Less than 3,000, High Emperor." he said to loud cheers.

"And our enemies?" his father asked.

"More than 15,000, High Emperor." he said as he looked up waiting to see the approval that as expected wasn't there in his father's eyes.

"A great and true victory has been brought to us today by my son, Prince Aemon Targaryen, The Dragonknight Reborn." his father said loudly and though there were smiles on the faces of the crowds that cheered his name, there were fewer on his family's and on the High Council's while the one on his father's face was false.

Dragonstone 300 AC.

Aemon Targaryen.

He dreamed the dream again that night, the day the smiles died as he had since named that day. The day when he had returned a hero and was yet soon sent away a disgrace. Waking up he got out of his bed and made his way to the privy, relieving himself before he then went to wash and dress. He made his way down to the yard and found Torgho Nudho, Thoros of Myr, and Daario Naharis all practicing their moves already. The three men looked at him and seeing him nod they quickly moved to grab their far truer blades.

Thoros wielded his sword without its flames for once, Torgho his spear, and Daario his Arakh, Aemon joining them with his own sword. Its thin blade may not look a match to those who knew no better but Valyrian Steel cut deep and Dark Sister had always had a hunger for blood. A hunger that he had fed her many times over the years and one that was soon to be sated once again. They moved in a circle, each of them looking for an opening, and Daario was as always the first to make a move. Aemon watched as Thoros pushed him back and then he felt rather than saw the spear come at him.

For more than an hour they fought, or to be more precise they mock fought, for this was no true battle and neither he nor the other three were truly giving it their all. It ended as all such things did not with a victory or a loss, but instead with a simple call to stop. Though this time it wasn't he or the others who'd made that call and Aemon turned to see Aurane walk his way. He smiled as he sheathed his sword before embracing his closest friend and truest brother as if he'd not seen him in an age. Something that was true enough as Aurane had returned to Volantis for his own brother's wedding and had then stopped off in Driftmark rather than come straight to Dragonstone upon his return.

"It's good to see you, brother." he said as he let Aurane go, both Daario and Thoros then embracing their companion just as warmly while Torgho Nudho simply touched his arm against Aurane's own as was his wont.

"You sent for me?" Aurane asked curiously, Aemon knowing that his friend assumed he wanted news from the empire, which he did not.

"The Stags still giving your ships problems, brother?" he asked and Aurane nodded, it was nothing he couldn't handle and he'd not sought his help though if he'd wished it he knew he only needed to ask.

"No more than ever, why?"

"I think it's time." he said and he saw both Thoros and Daario look his way, Torgho Nudho he swore he caught with a grin on his face.

"You're sure?" Aurane asked.

"I've sent the ravens to my mother's family and to my sister's, I'll await their replies but it's time, I'm sure. What say you brother, eager for a fight?" he asked with a laugh.

"Always brother" Aurane said with a smile and Aemon didn't need to look at the others to know they were ready too.

They drank and spent the night feasting, Aemon calling in his commanders and most of their own captains to let them know that from now on they'd only be doing so again when they celebrated victories. He could see the eagerness in their eyes to begin, the wait was not something they'd expected and certainly not something they had welcomed. There was only so much you could do when you practiced at war, only so ready you could keep yourself, and for his men only so much fun that could be had.

They'd come with him out of loyalty and respect and yet he knew they'd wished for glory too. Glory and lands, victory and the spoils of war, and Aemon would give them it all. Later that night he was standing at the window looking out on the bay when he heard Aurane make his way into the room. Gaelithox was resting on the cliffs nearby and yet Aemon could feel him, see him as if he was standing there beside him and not here in this keep so very far away.

"You saw her?" he asked softly.

"I did." Aurane said "She's to be married, Aemon, to one of the Pureborn from Qarth."

"Father and his silly games, he still believes alliances can keep the empire strong." he said bitterly.

"Do they not?" Aurane asked.

"Only when the man you ally with is strong himself. The Pureborn? I wouldn't trust them to wipe the shit from a Dothraki stallion's arse let alone step up and fight them if they rise again." Aemon said.

"You think they'll rise again?" Aurane asked worriedly.

"No, maybe, perhaps. It's not my concern. This, you're with me on this?" he asked turning around to face him.

"I've been with you since I was but a babe, Aemon, that's one truth you never have to question. Brothers Always." Aurane said holding up his arm.

"Brothers Always." he said wrapping his own arm around his brother's and leaning his forehead against Aurane's own.

He didn't ask if she was happy, or if she was content, nor did he ask if he'd given her the letter he'd sent, the song he'd wrote her, he knew he didn't have to. As he took to his bed that night, he closed his eyes and it was indigo eyes and dark hair he saw, her words he heard, and once again he felt his heart as it broke.

"I cannot, we cannot, father is right, Aemon, what we do is against the will of gods, against father's will." Rhaenys said.

"We are dragons, Rhaenys, we answer only to ourselves, not to gods, not to men, and not even to Emperors." he said as he took her head in his hands "Come with me, leave with me, be with me."

"I cannot, I'm sorry, I cannot." she said shaking her head and though he could see the tears in her eyes and knew how hard it was for her to refuse him, her words hurt him more than any wound ever had.

Volantis 300 AC.

Rhaenys Targaryen.

Her eyes were closed and her hand moved across her breast, her fingers taking the nipple between them and rolling it before moving onto the other breast and doing the same thing. She felt the small stings of pain, the brief moment of pleasure and yet as always, it was not the same. Almost without thinking or willing it to do so, her hand moved down between her legs and she felt the beginnings of her arousal, only for it too to begin to fade.

It was no good, it was never the same and even closing her eyes and conjuring up an image of his face didn't have the desired effect. True, seeing his long dark hair and his dark grey eyes sent a shudder through her body, but it also made her remember that he was not here and had not been for more than a year. So it was with great frustration, annoyance, and more than a tinge of sadness that Rhaenys rose from her bed and readied to start the day. She called for her handmaidens and when they'd helped her dress, she then made her way to the family dining room to break her fast.

"Good morning, Arthur." she said as she took her seat, only she and Arthur present in the room for now.

"Good morning, princess. An early one today?" Arthur asked as he looked at her with concern in his eyes.

"I couldn't sleep." she said sheepishly and then she saw his small nod.

"Well sleep's loss is my gain then is it not." Arthur said and she chuckled.

They weren't alone for long, her mother, uncle, and aunt soon joining them, and then her father, brother, and granduncle made their way into the room. Rhaenys smiled sadly at Aemon as she always did, it was difficult though to see him in such a weakened state. His eyesight had all but left him and he was growing weaker by the day, yet he hid it well to all but family. Even when Aurane Velaryon had arrived recently for his brother's wedding, her granduncle had appeared to be as fit and healthy as he had once been.

Rhaenys wondered if he had done so for her brother's sake, to not have him think about him being so weak and to then not to be able to come and visit even for that. Knowing how much her brother loved his namesake, she doubted that even their father's will would have kept Aemon away if he'd known the truth about their granduncle's health. It saddened her to think that should he pass, which seemed to be what everyone expected would happen soon, it would be without the chance for the two of them to say their goodbyes. Then again she felt enough sadness when she thought about her brother as it was.

"I cannot, I'm sorry, I cannot."

The words haunted her still, even after all this time. She caught her mother look her way and so she smiled at her, hoping it was enough to forestall any questions. If there was one thing she was sure about it was that she didn't need anyone poking or prodding at her feelings right now, not with the wedding so close and her doubts threatening to overwhelm her. To ensure her mother's stares wouldn't provoke her into giving more away than she wished, Rhaenys looked to her father and Aegon and tried to listen to the heated discussion they were having. Only hearing it had something to do with her goodsister and nothing more.

Talisa and Aegon hadn't been getting along for some time, their different views on slaves and Aegon's wandering eye was perhaps the reason for that and she wondered why her father didn't come down harder on her errant brother at times. Rhaenys did her best to ignore the voice in her head that told her that she knew the reason why. That one son in exile was all the empire could take and that Aemon's refusal to give her up and follow their father's will, couldn't be allowed to occur again with Aegon too.

"You think I care what others think of me? I bring them glory and yet they speak of me behind my back, they whisper of me in the hallways of your own palace, and yet I keep my counsel. You think I care that they think me an abomination because of the love I have for my sister? You forget The Conqueror, father, you forget that we are dragons and we answer to no man and not even to the gods themselves." her brother said his voice calm but his anger clear.

"You answer to me, you follow my will, you do so or you suffer the consequences, Aemon." their father said, his own voice was so very much like Aemon's that if she closed her eyes she'd not know which of them was speaking.

"What you ask of me I cannot give you, I will not give you, and so to you, I say, no. Now do your worst, father." Aemon said and their father's wroth was worse than any of them could have imagined.

She was lost in these thoughts and had been for some time. Thoughts that at times she'd been able to put out of her head, though for briefer and briefer periods of time over the last year. Thoughts that she'd been having more and more ever since Aurane came and handed her the letter that she both longed to and feared to open.

"Rhaenys."

"Rhaenys."

"Are you even listening to me?"

Shaking her head, she looked to see Daenerys looking at her with a smile on her face, her aunt looking so very amused with herself that even Rhaenys laughed as she looked at her.

"Forgive me, aunt, what were you saying?" she said as her mother, father, brother, and uncle looked at her, though none seemed more intrigued than Arthur did.

"I was saying, we've to go and get fitted, Rhaenys, both of us." Daenerys said.

"Oh, I'm sorry, I…"

"Was lost in thought about your betrothed no doubt." Daenerys said almost dreamily.

Rhaenys didn't contradict her, instead just smiling at her and after bidding her father and mother farewell, she hurried after her aunt to the dressmakers. Her day was to be a never-ending one of being poked and prodded after all, though at least this was to ready her dress and not to seek out what was on her mind. She and Daenerys were heading back to her rooms when they saw her betrothed and his guards walking through the Grand Palace.

Egon Emeros was a very handsome man, though he looked far too much like her brother to Rhaenys's eyes, and it was not the brother she'd have wished him to remind her of. He was tall, his silver hair was long and worn in a ponytail that stretched halfway down his back, and though she doubted the man had ever truly wielded a sword or weapon of any sort, he was muscular and fit beneath his immaculate clothing. That she didn't find him in any way attractive at all, she could only put down to the fact he was not the only man she had ever found so, he was not and would never be the brother of her heart. Still, she welcomed him warmly, accepting his kiss on her hand and trying not to scowl at her swooning aunt.

"He's so handsome, so fit, I bet he could go all night." Daenerys said after Egon and his guards walked away and Rhaenys laughed and shook her head as Daenerys continued to speak "I'm so jealous of you niece, I hope Rhaegar finds me a man just as handsome when it's my turn to wed."

"You can have mine." she said honestly though her aunt laughed as she thought it a jape.

For some reason, she felt a call, a need to go to her dragon, and looking to her aunt she knew that once she suggested it that she'd seek to fly too. So it was to the Dragonpit and not her rooms that they went. Rhaenys looked to the sky and then she saw Meraxes land quickly, almost as if she had been waiting for her. Her dragon's silver scales shined in the bright light of the sun and though she was smaller than Daenerys own black dragon, Nightwing, there was none as fast as Meraxes other than her brother's own and with them both far from here, none in Essos was even close.

"I missed you too girl, do you want to fly?" she said softly touching the silver scales and feeling the dragon's trill as she did so.

No more than a few moments later she was in the air, Daenerys flying beside her and Nightwing calling out a challenge that Meraxes was only too happy to take. The two dragons roared loudly as they flew through the city, barely missing buildings and no doubt giving all below a show they'd enjoy. She could hear her aunt's laughter and though she joined in, her own was far more muted. Even Meraxes was finding their flying companions to be poor substitutes from the ones they both wished were here with them.

It was perhaps this more than anything that led to her cutting the flight short and to her not feeling in the mood for a family dinner that night. Rhaenys glad when her mother accepted her word that it was just nerves about the wedding and not anything else that was causing her so much concern. Try as she might though she couldn't get the thoughts from her head or his image from her mind and so she moved to the chest where she kept her most precious things and looked for the letter that Aurane had brought her from her brother.

She moved past the seashell he'd brought her from his first-ever trip away from Volantis. Aemon had wished for her to share it with him and found this to be the only way she could. The small red gemstone that he'd gifted her for her tenth nameday brought a smile to her face as did the silver comb that at times she still used, even if it was only when she knew she'd not be disturbed. When she found the letter she took it out almost afraid it would simply fade away. As if this too was but a dream of a life that could never be.

Closing her eyes, she brought it to her mouth and kissed it softly, imaging Aemon doing the same before he handed it to Aurane. Hoping that he still did the same as they had always done with their letters to each other. She swore she could smell him, his scent almost coming off the letter in waves and she breathed in deeply to take as much of him into her self as she could. Then, she carefully opened the letter and looked at the writing, seeing the words written in his hand.

If you're not the one then why does my soul feel glad today?
If you're not the one then why does my hand fit yours this way?
If you are not mine then why does your heart return my call?
If you are not mine would I have the strength to stand at all?

I'll never know what the future brings
But I know you're here with me now
We'll make it through
And I hope you are the one I share my life with

I don't want to run away but I can't take it, I don't understand
If I'm not made for you then why does my heart tell me that I am?
Is there any way that I can stay in your arms?

If I don't need you then why am I crying on my bed?
If I don't need you then why does your name resound in my head?
If you're not for me then why does this distance maim my life?
If you're not for me then why do I dream of you as my wife?

I don't know why you're so far away
But I know that this much is true
We'll make it through
And I hope you are the one I share my life with
And I wish that you could be the one I die with
And I'm prayin' you're the one I build my home with
I hope I love you all my life

I don't want to run away but I can't take it, I don't understand
If I'm not made for you then why does my heart tell me that I am?
Is there any way that I can stay in your arms?'

Cause I miss you, body and soul so strong that it takes my breath away
And I breathe you into my heart and
Pray for the strength to stand today

'Cause I love you, whether it's wrong or right
And though I can't be with you tonight
You know my heart is by your side

I don't want to run away but I can't take it, I don't understand
If I'm not made for you then why does my heart tell me that I am?

Is there any way that I could stay in your arms?

She felt the tears flow as she looked over the words once more, each of them cutting deep into her very soul. Moving to her wardrobe she looked for her clothes and dressed as quickly as she could before she grabbed her coin purse and the chest and then she made her way to the window. Climbing down quickly, she was soon almost running through the garden and calling out for Meraxes as she did so. After she had told her dragon to meet her, she then felt Meraxes's joy as it was clear what it was she intended to do. Rhaenys and the silver dragon were both as one in knowing that this was not only the right choice for them but the only one.

How she reached the Dragonpit without being seen she could only put down to Meleys herself. For only the goddess of love could have been on her side in such an endeavor. Climbing up onto Meraxes back as soon as she saw her land, she didn't even have to tell her to fly, the silver dragon quickly taking to the sky and heading north for now. North though wasn't where she was going, it wasn't her destination and it would be soon to the West they turned. To the West and to the place that she should have gone more than a year ago, to the place and to the man who waited in that place, the man she loved.

"Take me to him, Meraxes, take me to my brother." she said and the silver dragon roared loudly as she began to fly even faster.

The High Empire of Valyria.

High Emperor Rhaegar Targaryen age 41 years.

The Empress of the Sun Elia Targaryen age 43 years.

The Dragon's Heir Aegon Targaryen age 21 years.

The Princess of the Sun Rhaenys Targaryen Age 22 Years.

The Prince of Dragons Viserys Targaryen age 24 years.

The Princess of Dragons Daenerys Targaryens age 17 years.

The Sword of the Morning, Ser Arthur Dayne age 43 years.

Deceased.

Former High Emperor Aerys Targaryen, died 283 AC aged 39 in his sleep (believed poisoned)

Empress of Dragons Rhaella Targaryen, died 284 AC aged 39 in the birthing bed.

The Empress of the Ice Lyanna Targaryen died 284 AC aged 18 in the birthing bed (daughter stillborn)

House Targaryen of Dragonstone.

The Dragonknight Aemon Targaryen (exiled son of the High Emperor and the Empress of the Ice) age 20 years.

Torgho Nudho age unknown (approx 30 years) sworn shield.

Daario Naharis age 35 years Commander of the Second Sons.

Thoros of Myr age 40 years Commander of the Flames of the Dragon.

Marwyn the Mage Maester age 55 years.

House Velaryon of Driftmark.

Aurane Velaryon age 22 childhood friend and brother of choice to the Dragonknight, Commander of the Sea Snakes.