A/N: Please don't hate me! I got caught up in finals then I had serious writer's block then I graduated (my new status in now unemployed lol) but I'm sure you don't want to hear about that so on with the story! This is a filler chapter to set a few things in motion.
Ashley was not in a charitable mood. She had come to this meeting believing it would be short and precise so she could return to Spencer. Instead, here she was faced with two men who seemed to have followed her from the Free Cities to gain an audience with her.
"Your Highness…" began Quentyn Martell.
"Khaleesi," Ashley answered, interrupting the man.
Quentyn Martell cleared his throat before beginning again. "Khaleesi, I am Quentyn Martell, son of Prince Doran of House Martell and the Lord of Sunspear. I come to you now to pledge the allegiance of my house to your rule as per instructed by my father."
"I am to believe that House Martell will support me in my campaign here?"
"Yes, Your…Khaleesi. We of House Martell have waited a long time to reunite Westeros with its rightful rulers, House Targaryen."
"And where was your House when the Usurper slaughtered my family and claimed Westeros as his own?"
"With your father Khaleesi. My aunt, Elia Martell, was murdered by those who killed your family and our House vowed vengeance on all those who murdered my aunt and my cousins. My father wanted to build his strength first before delivering the might of Dorne to King's Landing."
Ashley nodded once, seemingly in thought. she gestured toward the next man to state his case.
"Khaleesi," he bowed deeply then continued. "I am Victarion Greyjoy, brother of Euron Greyjoy, Lord of the Iron Islands and I too have to come to pledge the allegiance of House Greyjoy to your cause."
"Would you know of a Theon Greyjoy? Is he of your house?"
Victarion flinched at the question. "Yes Khaleesi. He is by dead brother's son and heir but we have not heard from him in a long time."
"He walks in the forests of Winterfell. I do not know if he still lives but for his sake, I suggest you hope for his death."
"Your Grace…whatever the boy has done should not be a reflection of…" Victarion stated.
"Of House Greyjoy? Is that what you have me think? He was a ward of House Stark was he not? The minute there was no one to watch his every move he turned his back on the very people that had raised him as almost another son of Winterfell. That shows a lack of trust, of honour, of loyalty to anyone buy his own House. Is that what I should perceive of all House Greyjoy?" Ashley stated with calm.
"No, Khaleesi. He acted out of a foolish young man's fancy…"
"What stops me from whipping out your entire House right now? I can send a section of my army and tear down your castle upon your heads. I know of your House. You are feared seamen and have grown arrogant. Arrogant enough to believe that no one can control the seas as well as you can. Not only this but I have also heard your brother, the current Lord, enjoys torturing his own servants for his own pleasure. This is the House you ask me to ally with? Liars, traitors, monsters!" Ashley answered. When no answer came forth Ashley continued, "I have heard your pleas. You will remain here as my…quests until I have made a decision. You will send no missives to your lords until I am ready to give your missives. Is that understood?"
"Yes, Khaleesi." Both men answered.
"Leave us. Rakharo, take them to their lodgings and place guards outside. Return here once you are done."
"Khaleesi," Rakharo stated as he bowed before leading the men out of the khas.
Ashley waited until she was certain they were too far away to hear. "Ser Selmy, can either House be trusted?"
Barristan Selmy stood up. "I know of House Martell. Their loyalty to your family was unwavering and if they have sought you out even now, then I believe they have remained loyal since I last was in King's Landing."
"How can we believe any of these Westeroi?" Aggo asked. "They all speak half truths."
"We have no assurances Aggo except their words. We shall see how true their words are as we begin to descend on King's Landing. I think that these lords play political games amongst themselves and most will side with whichever side is winning. It is not pleasant but it seems as if that is the way of the nobles here."
"All kingdoms speak half truths Khaleesi. Only strength speaks the truth and this," Strong Belwas gestured to his fist, "brings truth from all liars."
"I see the sense in that. We shall overcome them all and separate the wheat from the chaff. Is that not the way of all conquerors?" Jhogo asked.
"It may have been the way of my ancestors and it may be my way but only if I see no other way. I want respect from my people, not fear." Ashley replied.
"That may be what you want Khaleesi but it may not come to pass." Ser Selmy stated. "The people see you as the harbinger of the past and only time will dissuade them from this thought. Until then, rule justly and fairly."
"Before all that, I must take King's Landing. Once I have the kingdom I will seek out all those who betrayed my father and my House." Ashley said. "We shall continue our march to White Haven. I do not want these Greyjoys or any other House, to think that they can rise above their station…again so all major ports must be mine. Rest tonight for tomorrow we take White Haven."
"Yes Khaleesi." The captains of her army walked out into the cold night.
Ashley rubbed her forehead in thought. She was beginning to realize that conquering Westeros would not be enough. Many would have to die or be imprisoned before she could rule with absolute loyalty and without any doubts.
In case I never explained it before, Ashley speaks to the Dothraki in Dothraki unless they are with others who don't understand the language. When they're in public everyone speaks the Common tongue.
courtingdisaster: I'm absolutely flattered! Thank you! And yes I know about the HBO series and have been watching every episode twice lol! I think I'm a little obsessed.
babykennedy: Lol, I'll try.
mb168: your PM gave me a kick up the ass!