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House of the Dragon: Will Rhaenyra and Daemon get married?

Matt Smith stars as Daemon Targaryen in Episode 4 of HBO's House of the Dragon Season 1
Matt Smith stars as Daemon Targaryen in Episode 4 of House of the Dragon Season 1. Pic credit: HBO

While marriage between an uncle and his niece is normally frowned upon, it’s not so much in the fantasy world of House of the Dragon.

Episode 4 saw Prince Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith) take his niece, Princess Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock), out on the town after a heavy discussion about what marriage is really about.

During this secret escapade, the pair engaged in some heavy petting and this led to the rumor mill circulating and Daemon being confronted by his brother about the tryst.

While Daemon was ready to wed Rhaenyra, King Viserys (Paddy Considine) was not as eager to place his daughter in the hands of his brother.

Instead, Viserys decided Rhaenyra would wed the son of Lord Corlys Velaryon (Steve Toussaint), Laenor (Theo Nate).

But how does this all play out in the book on which House of the Dragon is based?

House of the Dragon is based on a book

Just like HBO’s original epic fantasy series, Game of Thrones, House of the Dragon is based on a book series by author George R. R. Martin. A Song of Ice and Fire tells the story that played out in Game of Thrones some 200 years after what we are now seeing in the new TV show.

Whereas House of the Dragon is based on a single book called Fire and Blood, which is set in the same universe as the A Son of Ice and Fire series.

Fire and Blood details the heyday of House Targaryen. Season 1 of House of the Dragon focuses on a particular point in the tome where there is a power struggle within House Targaryen in relation to the legitimate heir to the Iron Throne.

Because it is based on fiction, viewers can get some idea of how things will go down based on what happened in Fire and Blood.

Milly Alcock as Princess Rhaenyra and Matt Smith as Prince Daemon, as seen in Episode 4 of HBO's House of the Dragon Season 1
Milly Alcock as Princess Rhaenyra and Matt Smith as Prince Daemon, as seen in Episode 4 of House of the Dragon Season 1. Pic credit: HBO/Ollie Upton

Do Daemon and Rhaenyra wed in the book?

For those wishing to avoid potential book spoilers for House of the Dragon, now is the time to look away. For everyone else, let’s find out exactly what happens between Daemon and his niece, Rhaenyra.

According to Fire and Blood, the pair do end up getting married.

But first Rhaenyra weds Laenor, just as her father expects of her.

Laenor is gay in the book and there is some question as to whether or not the pair consummated their marriage. In fact, after Rhaenyra ends up birthing three sons while in this union — none of which look anything like her or Laenor, who are both described as fair-haired in the book.

While Rhaenyra is married to Laenor, Daemon’s first wife, Rhea Royce, falls from a horse and dies, and he ends up marrying Laenor’s sister, Laena (currently portrayed by Nova Mosé-Foueillis in House of the Dragon).

However, Daemon’s second marriage is fated for disaster as well with Laena dying during childbirth with their third child.

As pointed out by Fansided, Laenor ends up dying as well and there are even rumors that Daemon had a hand in Laenor’s death. Regardless, this now gives Daemon and Rhaenyra a chance to finally wed.

The marriage between the two was considered quite scandalous as not only was Rhaenyra’s father not informed of the marriage but neither Laena nor Laenor had been dead for more than six months before the uncle and his niece tied the not.

As for what happens once Daemon and Rhaenyra are married? Well, that remains to be seen and viewers will have to continue watching House of the Dragon in order to find out more.

House of the Dragon airs every Sunday night at 9/8c on HBO Max.