Title: The Song of Rhaego Fireborn
Wordcount: Appx. 4k.
Warnings: Fantasy Violence; Mild Sexuality; Fairy Tale/Legend Narrative Style.
Summary:I sing a Song of Khal Drogo, a khal among khals, the first khal to cross the sea. I sing of Khaleesi Daenerys, the mother and daughter of dragons. I sing a Song of the son she bore, the Stallion Who Mounts the World. I sing the Song of Rhaego Fireborn, brother of dragons, with eyes the color of the sky. I sing a Song of Ice and Fire. AU from episode 1x09 onwards. Drogo/Dany. One sided Jorah/Dany.
Note:Based entirely upon the television series, to comply with wishes of the author George R. R. Martin. Spoilers for the entirety of Season 1.
Part I: Waking the Dragon
In the great city of the Dothraki, Vaes Dorthrak, beyond the seas of grass in the east, storytellers and legend keepers sing of the Dragon King, the legend of the Stallion Who Mounts the World. The Dothraki love to hear it, the song of their promised prince, and so a hush falls under the starlight whenever the first words of the saga are uttered.
"I sing a Song of Khal Drogo, a khal among khals, the first khal to cross the sea. I sing of Khaleesi Daenerys, the mother and daughter of dragons. I sing a Song of the son she bore, the Stallion Who Mounts the World. I sing the Song of Rhaego Fireborn, brother of dragons, with eyes the color of the sky. I sing a Song of Ice and Fire…"
"My sun-and-stars." Dany knelt at Drogo's feet, her belly heavy with child. She touched her husband's great muscled chest, where a red gash parted his flesh. "It hurts me to see you bleed." She spoke quickly, in Dothraki, the words almost natural on her tongue after the months spent learning the language.
"Is nothing, scratch," Drogo answered her in the common tongue of Westeros, his heavy Dothraki accent making the syllables foreign and exotic. "I do not need healing, moon-of-my-life," he continued in Dothraki, cupping her face in his hands.
Her heart hammering, Dany ordered a cloth brought, and tended Drogo herself. The corners of his mouth twitched up. She knew that he was humoring her, allowing her to care for him for her sake, not his own. Later, when sitting by the fire with his bloodriders, they would talk of a woman's heart and a mother's sensibilities. But that did not bother Dany, so long as Drogo's wound was cleansed.
She knew from the way he watched her that it pleased him that she insisted.
That night, in their tent, he made love to her tenderly, carefully, with a gentility that belied the image of savage strength he cast to the rest of the world. Outside their tent, he was Khal Drogo, fierce and tall. Khal Drogo, the Undefeated Horse Lord. But within he was Dany's sun-and-stars, gentle and loving, and most importantly, hers. For always.
Dany rode her white mare at the head of the khalasar, Ser Jorah riding beside her. Ahead of them Drogo sat tall on the back of his stallion, his bloodriders around him. Shifting forward, Dany supported the swell of her stomach with one hand. Her time was drawing near. Her son moved inside her like the great stallion it was prophesized he would become, her flesh rippling with the strength of his movements.
"Khaleesi," Ser Jorah said, concern in his voice. "You would be more comfortable in a cart."
"That is not the Dothraki way," Dany returned, though she appreciated his thoughtfulness. He had been faithful and true since the day he presented himself to her at her wedding. A kind face and familiar language had meant much in those early months.
It still meant much.
"But Khaleesi – "
"I am the Blood of the Dragon, Ser Jorah. I will ride."
They stopped to make camp as the sun was sinking into the horizon, lighting the sky with the fire of dragons, if Dany's handmaidens were to be believed. Ser Jorah dismounted and turned to help Dany down from her white mare, but Khal Drogo reached Dany first, easily lifting her down and cradling her in his arms.
"Moon-of-my-life," he said in his deep rumble of a voice, placing one of his large hands on her abdomen to feel their son within.
"My sun-and-stars," she returned, burying her nose in his chest. He smelled of leather, and horse, and the scented oils he used on his bronzed skin and dark hair. It made Dany feel safe. Who could hurt her or her son with this great warrior to protect them?
She had married Drogo out of duty, with a sense of doom, only to have him become her light in a dark sky.
"I must cleanse your wound," Dany continued in Dothraki, gently prodding at the rough bandages of spun horse hair that covered her husband's chest. "Mirri Maz Duur says –"
"I do not need the words of that witch, moon-of-my-life," Drogo interrupted, though he began walking in the direction of their tent. The slaves were working quickly to arrange all as the khal and khaleesi preferred it. Dany could see her handmaiden Doreah fetching water. She had anticipated that Dany would wish to cleanse Drogo's wound, under the pretense of lavishing attention upon him.
Like a great cat, Drogo would lounge, his eyes half lidded in bliss as Dany deftly unbraided his long hair, and undressed him. Then she would coax him into the bath before joining him herself, where she would wash his skin, run her fingers through his uncut mane, and drop feathery kisses on his face and chest.
When they were first wed, and her grasp of Dothraki had been meager at best, this time together had been a way of communicating, an almost communion between them. Dany still felt peaceful and enjoyed the quiet moments they spent in the copper tub, but more than that she used it to care for Drogo's wound in a way that would not offend his pride.
"Thank you, Doreah. Leave us now," Dany commanded her handmaiden as she entered the tent that she and Drogo shared. Doreah bowed and left quickly, leaving Dany alone with Drogo.
"Tell me again of the lands beyond the poison water," he said as he sat in his customary place so that Dany could begin unbinding his hair. He asked often of the western lands since he had made his vow to place their son upon the Iron Throne.
Ser Jorah said it was because Khal Drogo was wise in the way of warcraft, and knew that he needed to learn the lay of the land, and all else he could if he was to conquer it.
"The dirts across the narrow sea are vast and varied," she began.
"Lands, not 'dirts,'" Drogo corrected, amusement twinkling in his eyes.
Dany smiled. She always confused those words in Dothraki. "Yes, lands."
Drogo turned, pulling Dany to him so he could lay his cheek against her stomach. Dany could feel her son turning within her, and knew that Drogo felt it too when he laughed.
"My son is strong." He smiled one of his feral smiles, and Dany felt the blood rush in her head.
"My son is a dragon," she returned, to Drogo's obvious approval.
"The moon-of-my-life grows fiercer each day." He kissed her, so large that she barely had to bend when he pulled her face down, though he was sitting and she standing.
Jorah stood watching the khaleesi's tent, as he often did at night. Drogo had been spending more time with his wife of late, as she grew closer to her time of labor. The great khal wished to be on hand to welcome his son into the world. It was honorable, more than many men of Westeros would do for their wives. It should have pleased Jorah, that Khal Drogo treated Daenerys Targaryen with such respect and… love.
Swallowing hard, Jorah looked away, into the inky blackness of the night.
I see how you watch her, Viserys' voice returned to him, taunting. Haunting him, the poor misguided fool. Viserys would have never been able to hold the Iron Throne, even if he had been able to reclaim it. But Daenerys, beautiful, brave Daenerys, with her milky skin and hair like spun starlight…
Jorah did not know when exactly it had happened, couldn't pinpoint the moment his sword became hers to command. He had watched her bloom from frightened princess to savage queen, helped her to understand the motives of those around her, found his knight's heart beginning to pound with loyalty to a worthy liege. He was her vassal, and she the moon of his life.
But he was not her sun and stars.
They were approaching a port, to sell the slaves they had taken, when it happened. As if from nowhere, an arrow flew, heading straight for the khaleesi. Jorah drew his sword, but Khal Drogo was faster.
He caught the arrow midflight, just before it would have pierced the khaleesi's shoulder. Raising it to his lips, he pressed his tongue to the point of the arrowhead and then spit, snarling the Dothraki word for 'poison.'
The bloodriders were already galloping off, raising a cloud of dust as they pursued the would-be assassin. Khal Drogo and Jorah would have joined them in their pursuit, but in that moment Daenerys doubled over, swallowing a gasp of pain and sliding sideways in her saddle.
"The baby, the baby," she moaned in the tongue of Westeros.
"The prince comes now," Jorah translated for Khal Drogo, watching as the man hefted Daenerys' small form and called for the midwives.
The khalasarbecame a bustle of activity. The midwives rushed forward, snapping orders to slaves and Dothraki warriors alike. Tents were erected, water fetched, and linens torn, as the tribe awaited the birth of their promised prince.
Jorah felt he was the only one waiting not for Rhaego, but for his khaleesi.
Dany writhed, gritting her teeth. Her muscles screamed and clenched, burning, roiling beneath her skin. There was a roaring in her ears, like flames engulfing wood. She knew that Drogo held her, that he had placed her on a pallet of blankets and furs, could feel his presence nearby. She could hear the voices of her khalasar, their footsteps, feel their shadows on her skin as they moved around her, erecting her tent, bringing water and cloth. Someone parted her thighs and spoke in quick Dothraki that Dany had forgotten how to understand, and Dany recognized the touch of the khalasar's best midwife.
Every time Dany closed her eyes, she saw a dragon looking back at her.
The Dragon Wakes, she thought, and didn't know why.
His eyes were blue-silver. Like her eyes. Her brother's eyes. But Viserys was no dragon. Fire cannot kill a dragon.
Consumed by a powerful urge, Dany flailed, calling for her dragon eggs in her native tongue. She could not remember the words in Dothraki. She could hear Drogo yelling at the midwife, but she wasn't able to understand him as another burning wave of fiery pain stretched her face into a tight, waxy mask.
And then Drogo was gone, pulled forcefully from the tent, banished by the midwife for getting in the way. More water was brought, and a cool cloth placed against Dany's head.
The dragon was still staring at her, slinking ever closer. She could feel the heat of the fire that burned at its heart.
"My eggs, bring me my eggs," she gasped, feeling as if her skin was burning. Surely it would crackle in flames, melt away at any moment.
"The khaleesi takes comfort in her baubles," one of her handmaidens said, and Dany breathed out in relief as the cold stone orbs were placed around her.
No. Not cold. Not stone. She could feel the heat from them, feel the life inside. Could no one else sense it?
The dragon eggs drew the heat from her skin, quenched the fire that burned her. Dany could feel them warming around her, reached out with a shaking hand to run her fingertips over one of them. But it wasn't enough, they needed more.
Irri pressed another cool cloth to Dany's cheek, and Dany shook her head. It wasn't water she needed. The dragon in her mind was upon her now, smoke curling from its nostrils. She quivered in the face of it, but not from fear.
The Blood of the Dragon.
"Fire," she called. "I need fire!"
"The khaleesi is cold! Bring a brazier!"
The dragon in Dany's mind opened its great jaw, and she could see its red tongue. It would swallow her whole, and she welcomed it, reaching into the air for the dragon only she could see.
"Wake now!" she called to it, uncaring that the women around her thought her mad.
But it was too cold, oh so cold, her dragon could not wake if he was so cold. His blood would move sluggishly in his veins, and he would fall back into slumber.
She would not let that happen.
She would wake the dragon.
Forcing herself into a sitting position, grunting with the pain and effort, Dany slapped away the hands of those who sought to hold her back, and lunged for the brazier that had been brought to stand next to her pallet.
It toppled, igniting the blankets and furs almost immediately. The hunger of the flames was like the hunger of the dragon, consuming all.
"The khaleesi has gone mad!"
Doreah grabbed at her, and Dany fought her off, biting and kicking, and then wailing as another gut wrenching labor pain struck her. A sudden gush of fluid and blood ran down her thighs, spreading over her pallet even as the edges of her blankets smoked, to coat the shells of the dragon eggs.
"Fire and Blood. Blood and Fire," Dany murmured, understanding at last a message her ancestors had tried to leave behind. The words of House Targaryen, Fire and Blood.
How to wake the dragon.
"Go!" Dany commanded, refusing to move though the fire had reached the walls of the tent and the air was choked with smoke.
Fire could not kill a dragon.
Finally all of her attendants were forced to retreat, leaving Dany to labor at the heart of the blaze.
"What has happened? Where is my wife?" Drogo demanded of those running from the orange flames that rose from his tent. "Where is Daenerys?" He always said her name thickly, deep in the back of his throat. He had never tried to alter his pronunciation because of the way the moon-of-his-life shivered at the sound.
It pleased him that his voice pleased her.
One of his wife's women stumbled into him, her face blackened with smoke. He shook her, demanding to know where his wife was, what had become of his son.
"Khal Drogo," Ser Jorah, the pale man from the west, placed a hand on his arm. Drogo flung the servant girl away, taking a step toward the burning tent.
His bloodriders barred the way.
"Move!" he commanded, drawing the blades at his belt. He would save his wife and child, even if it meant cutting down his warriors.
"My Khal, see reason," Ser Jorah spoke, his voice cracking with a pain that made Drogo look and listen. "She wouldn't want you to die with her. She loves you."
Drogo looked into Jorah's eyes, seeing something of himself reflected back at him. "She is the moon-of-your-life," he said in Dothraki, his tone daring Jorah to deny it.
A look of surprise passed the older man's face, and then he nodded.
Whatever Drogo might have done was forestalled by the cracking, crashing of the tent collapsing in on itself and the roar of the flames climbing ever higher.
Jorah made a choking cry and took a half-step forward before stopping himself, and suddenly Drogo felt that they were brothers, bonded together in loss, forged in fire.
Grasping Jorah's shoulder in one large hand, he threw back his head and howled his grief to the stars, cursing all gods that were and ever would be, a sound that made the horses restless and raised the hair on the back of men's necks.
After a moment, Jorah joined him.
They kept vigil before the fire, watching as it grew larger, and then began at last to die away. All was quiet in the khalasar, save for the crackle of the flames. Neither animal nor man made a sound through the night following Drogo's lament.
It was the cry that silenced the world.
As soon as it was light enough, and the ashes cool enough, they began to look for Daenerys' remains. Jorah's eyes ached from smoke and tears he was too proud to shed. That was why he thought it a hallucination at first. What he was seeing was simply impossible.
And then he heard Drogo cry "Moon-of-my-life!" and he knew the great khal saw it too.
Like some goddess of legend, Daenerys Targaryen rose from the ashes of her burned tent. Her clothes had burned away. Her skin was streaked with soot, yet it was unblistered. Her silvery blond hair was grey from smoke, and yet hung silky and free around her shoulders.
More astonishing still, she held a black haired child to her breast. He nursed robustly, already strong and sure of himself, unnaturally coordinated for a child born only hours before.
And perched on the khaleesi's shoulders were dragons.
Scaled, magical, one red and two bronze, with delicate looking wings and vicious snouts. They perched contentedly, looking down at the infant nursing, cooing to him in a series of hisses and clicking sounds.
Daenerys looked up, and Jorah found himself rooted in place, unsure whether his heart had stopped beating or else was beating too quickly.
Drogo pushed through the ash, stopping just short of pulling wife and child into his chest when the dragons hissed at him. The khaleesi scolded the beasts softly, then presented Khal Drogo with his son.
"My son!" he declared to the khalasar, to the joy of the people.
"My son Rhaego, born in fire, brother of dragons!" Daenerys echoed him in Dothraki.
The red dragon on the khaleesi's left shoulder fluttered its wings, half flying and half jumping to land on Khal Drogo and cling to his bound hair, in order to be closer to Rhaego. To his credit, the only sign Khal Drogo gave of noticing the beast was a twitch of his chest muscles.
"My son is the Blood of the Dragon, and the brother of dragons," the khaleesi spoke again. "He needs no bloodriders, for he already has them." She gestured, indicating the dragons who were clearly devoted to the small child that was made to look even smaller in Khal Drogo's hands.
She was not asking, but commanding, and Jorah felt his heart swell with pride for his queen. Khal Drogo looked down at her with an expression of such quiet love and intensity that Jorah thought Dany could have asked for anything in that moment, and Khal Drogo would have given it to her.
"It will be what you say," Drogo said in the tongue of Westeros, a mark of respect for his khaleesi.
That night Rhaego was presented to the khalasarunder the stars. He was olive skinned like the Dothraki, with a head of thick black hair. But his eyes - his eyes were a clear silver-blue.
The same color as the eyes of the dragons that guarded his cradle.
Thank you for reading! Con crit welcome!