House Of The Dragons Season 2 Episode 4: How Does Rhaenys Targaryen Die? Eve Best Explains Difference Between Fire And Blood Show

Rhaenys Targaryen's tragic death in House of the Dragon Season 2 Episode 4 marks the first major dragon-on-dragon battle of the war.

Published on Jul 09, 2024  |  09:41 AM IST |  50K
House Of The Dragons Season 2 (Youtube/Max)

Spoilers for House of the Dragon Season 2 Episode 4

Fans of the Game of Thrones universe know that no character is safe from death, including Rhaenys Targaryen, a beloved dragon rider from George R.R. Martin's book Fire and Blood and the prequel TV series House of the Dragon.

The second season of House of the Dragon covers the start of the Dance of the Dragons, a civil war between Targaryen siblings Rhaenyra and Aegon over the Iron Throne.

House of the Dragon Season 2 Episode 4 witness fall of Rhaenys Targaryen

Episode 4 of Season 2 features the Battle of Rook’s Rest, where a fan-favorite character, Rhaenys Targaryen, and her dragon, Meleys, meet their end.

Before Rhaenyra was named heir, there was Princess Rhaenys Targaryen, the firstborn of Aemon Targaryen. After Aemon's death, the throne went to her younger cousin, Viserys, earning her the nickname The Queen Who Never Was.

Rhaenys supported Rhaenyra's claim to the throne in the Dance of the Dragons. As the war continues in season two, Rhaenys is a valuable ally on Rhaenyra's council, often being the voice of reason. Unfortunately, she meets a tragic end in the fourth episode.

How does Rhaenys die in Fire And Blood?

In the book Fire and Blood, Rhaenys and her dragon Meleys fly to Rook's Rest to defend it but are trapped by King Aegon II and Prince Aemond.

In a fierce aerial battle, all three dragons crash to the ground. Rhaenys and Meleys are killed, and her body is later found charred beyond recognition. Her death devastates her husband, Lord Corlys Velaryon, causing tension in Rhaenyra's camp.


How does Rhaenys die in the House of The Dragons?

The episode ends with the death of Rhaenys Targaryen, also known as The Queen Who Never Was. Rhaenys, played by Eve Best, volunteers to face Ser Criston Cole on the battlefield, unaware that Team Green has set a trap at Rook’s Rest. Rhaenys and Meleys are killed by Aemond and his dragon, Vhagar, in the first major dragon-on-dragon battle of the war.

How did this happen? Ser Criston Cole and Aemond devised a plan to lure Rhaenys to her death, but it almost fell apart due to the surprise appearance of Aegon.

Ser Criston Cole had been taking over castles in the Riverlands to build support for Aegon. Instead of marching on Harrenhal, they targeted Rook’s Rest to draw out Rhaenyra’s dragons. Rhaenys and Meleys arrive to help, not knowing Aemond and Vhagar are waiting.

A twist in the plan occurs when a drunk Aegon flies to the battle on his dragon, Sunfyre, without knowing Vhagar is there. He engages Meleys but is quickly outmatched. Vhagar arrives just in time to attack, with Aemond nearly killing his brother in the process. Vhagar eventually kills Meleys by crushing her neck, and Rhaenys falls to her death, destroying a part of Rook’s Rest.


Though we don't see Rhaenys's death close-up, it's clear she doesn't survive the fall. 

Eve Best on the missing detail - Rhaenys's whip

The show omits a key detail from the books: Rhaenys’s whip. In the book, she courageously charges into battle with a crack of her whip.

Actress Eve Best mentioned in an interview with Decider that “Very, very, very tragically, I was presented with this stunningly beautiful whip,” She noted, “What I requested was entirely as a joke. And they did come up with this unbelievably beautiful red leather whip and they then sent me off. I had two whip-cracking lessons.”

Best continued, “I mean, I think the complicated thing — I know because I know in the book, and that’s part of why the conversation came up in the first place was, that there are moments when it says she cracks her whip. But the thing is, actually what came up in the filming, was the reality is you can’t possibly whip a dragon.”


The tender moments between Rhaenys and Meleys in the episode add to the tragedy of their deaths. With Meleys gone, Rhaenys knows she has lost everything. The next episode will likely explore how Rhaenyra, Corlys, and their allies react to this devastating loss.

House of The Dragon Season 2 Episode 5 will air on July 14, 2024. 

ALSO READ: Lily Collins Shares Chilling BTS Clip Of Her Look From New Horror Movie MaXXXine; See HERE

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