Is Rhaenyra pregnant? ‘House of the Dragon’ Episode 4, Explained
HBO Dragon Housebased on Game of Thônes the prequel by author George RR Martin Fire & Bloodfollows the war of succession of the Targaryen royal family, with several princes and princesses vying for the Iron Throne.
A little like game of thrones before that, Dragon House features an ensemble cast, but Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen is the closest thing we have to a main character, and the story more closely follows her as she attempts to navigate palace life and find a way to assert themselves in a strictly patriarchal world.
Episode 1 saw Rhaenyra’s father, King Viserys, officially name her his heiress after the death of his newborn son Baelon. Naming a girl as heir to the throne of the Seven Kingdoms is pretty much unheard of in Westerosi history, and it’s safe to say that many of the stuffier male characters in the Little Council aren’t exactly thrilled with the move, urging Viserys to change favor once his new son Aegon is born and encourage him to marry Rhaenyra as the head of a suitably noble house.
Among Rhaenyra’s potential suitors are the slightly goofy Jason Lannister and his first cousin Laenor Velaryon, though the characters the character shares the most chemistry with are deemed far less suitable: the common Ser Criston Cole, whose rise to Kingsguard Rhaenyra facilitated, and, well… her uncle, Prince Daemon.
Raw, I know. But this is Westeros we’re talking about. Incest between blondes is normal.
After spending most of the series refuting advances, episode four of Dragon House sees Rhaenyra’s first sexual encounters. First, she is reunited with Daemon after his prolonged absence, and they appear to rekindle their deeply messed up connection, with the avuncular relationship turning carnal before Daemon appears to end it. Then we follow Rhaenyra to the palace, where she meets Criston.
Is Rhaenyra pregnant?
In the final scene of the episode, Rhaenyra meets the Royal Maester, who brings her some kind of potion or cure, which he tells her for the “consequences” of her actions. It is strongly implied that this is a fantasy world equivalent to Plan B and that Rhaenyra needs emergency contraception after her dates, though it is still unclear if she fully consummated things with Daemon or Criston.
Incest aside, if Rhaenyra did conceiving with Daemon, it could help cement his claim to the throne on his half-brother Aegon, as Daemon was the official heir before Viserys changed his mind and chose her. However, if she were to be pregnant with the offspring of a member of the Kingsguard, it is more likely to be seen as a scandal than cause for celebration.
Spoiler alert for the books
In the fictional history of the Targaryen family by George RR Martin, we learn that Rhaenyra Is eventually had children with his uncle Daemon: two boys named Viserys II and Aegon III, both of whom would become kings. However, this occurs later in the timeline, with Rhaenyra first marrying and having children with her cousin Laenor Velaryon, while Daemon marries Laenor’s sister Laena.
Of course the Dragon House the showrunners may well end up remixing the order of events, so you’ll have to stay tuned to find out just how messy that line of succession becomes.
Philip Ellis is a freelance writer and journalist from the UK covering pop culture, relationships and LGBTQ+ issues. His work has appeared in GQ, Teen Vogue, Man Repeller and MTV.