Fire & Blood

House of the Dragon's Prophetic New Character is More Important Than You Think

Meet Alys, Daemon apparent new spiritual guide.

A knight with long white hair, wearing dark armor, sits at a dimly lit table intently gazing while h...
House of the Dragon

House of the Dragon Season 2 has introduced many new characters alongside the ones we grew to love (or loved to hate) in Season 1. Just in the first two episodes, we’ve met Cregan Stark from the North, the bumbling assassins Blood and Cheese, and sailors Addam and Alyn of Hull. But Episode 3 introduces a character on a completely different level — someone who could have powers on the level of the most fearsome Targaryen.

Here’s everything you need to know about this new character, and how her presence changes Daemon’s surprisingly easy conquering of Harrenhal.

Spoilers for House of the Dragon Episode 3 ahead.

Alys Rivers, played by GLOW’s Gayle Rankin, is an illegitimate daughter working as a healer at Harrenhal. She has adopted the last name “Rivers,” as is commonplace in the Riverlands. (This naming convention is the same reason Jon Snow has his last name.) We only see her briefly in Episode 3 of House of the Dragon, but her one line makes a huge difference. After Daemon is confronted with a horrifying vision of young Rhaenyra stitching the head of young Jahaerys back onto his decapitated body, he sees Alys in the courtyard.

Gayle Rankin plays Alys Rivers in House of the Dragon.

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

“You will die in this place,” she says, before briskly walking away. Daemon is understandably shaken by this comment, but anyone who knows Alys’ true potential knows the true meaning of this line. In the original book Fire & Blood, Alys Rivers is, like Helaena Targaryen, blessed with the gift of prophecy. But can we use the book to prophesize what’s ahead for her in this series?

Warning! Spoilers for House of the Dragon ahead!

Alys’ influence in the Dance of the Dragons and beyond goes further than just a few ominous sentences. While the Strongs at Harrenhal willingly surrendered to the Blacks, the castle eventually changes hands, and Daemon’s nephew Prince Aemond claims Alys as a war trophy.

Aemond and Alys have similar levels of weird intensity, and he begins to genuinely love her as well as hang on to her every prophetic word. She becomes pregnant with his son, and he brings her back to Harrenhal for a final confrontation with Daemon, the very duel that would end in both their deaths — just as she predicted in this episode.

Alys becomes a key figure in Prince Aemond’s life.


But Alys’ story doesn’t end once her Targaryen boyfriend dies. Years later, Harrenhal is said to be under the rule of a witch queen who had amassed a following of former soldiers. When some of the Kingsguard go to investigate, they find the “queen” is actually Alys, who has not only claimed Harrenhal as her own, but has also claimed that her son is the trueborn heir of Aemond and therefore of the Iron Throne. (She insists that Aemond married her in secret, but there’s no proof.)

Alys became almost a mythical figure in Westerosi history, with some claiming she had the ability to telepathically kill those who displeased her and set curses on her enemies. We’ll have to see how many of those claims make it to House of the Dragon, but for now, she’s just a spooky woman with an eye toward the future, and there can’t be enough of those in the Game of Thrones universe.

House of the Dragon is now streaming on Max.

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