All of Helaena Targaryen’s Prophecies in ‘House of the Dragon’, Explained
Helaena definitely called it.
Warning: This article contains possible spoilers for House of the Dragon Season Two and George R.R. Martin’s Fire & Blood.
The House of the Dragon season one finale officially marked the beginning of the long-brewing Dance of the Dragons, with audiences left with no choice but to hold their breath for at least more two years before we can watch how it all unfolds. The bloody civil war within House Targaryen is expected to cover countless betrayals and deaths involving both various members from the royal family and their beloved dragons.
The show, of course, heavily draws inspiration from Game of Thrones’s lore as well as George R.R. Martin’s 2018 novella, Fire & Blood. Most notably, Martin has also taken a more hands-on approach with the adaptation of his work this time around and so, each liberality that the showrunners have taken can be construed to have been made with his blessing.
Among the biggest but most interesting—and arguably the best—of these changes are the ones made with Alicent and Viserys’ daughter, Helaena.
Targaryen Dreamers in ‘House of the Dragon’
Now, in the book Helaena is more of a quiet and subtle character. The same could be said for her counterpart on House of the Dragon, however, viewers have been quick to notice an important ability of hers: she appears to be a dreamer.
The seemingly hereditary ability of members of the house of the Dragon to see into the future have been mentioned many times throughout the show’s first season. There is, of course, the recurring theme of Aegon the Conqueror’s dream which he left secretly written in the catspaw dagger that also happens to foreshadow the primary conflict in Game of Thrones. King Viserys also made mention of the greatest and perhaps first dreamer in their line: Daenys Targaryen, who had seen the fall of Valyria. Upon her advice, her father relocated their entire family together with their dragons to Dragonstone, despite snide remarks and laughs they received from other lords and ladies in Old Valyria. Twelve years later, Valyria did fall and the Targaryens became among the last of the world’s dragonriders.
There is no explicit mention of Helaena having prophetic abilities in the source material and so the slight deviation has proven quite interesting and has left fans quite literally hanging onto her every word.
“He’ll have to close an eye.”
After being relentlessly teased for not having a dragon, Aemond was presented with the “pink dread” by his brother Aegon and Rhaenyra’s children, Jaecerys and Lucerys. As we all know, the “dragon” turned out to be a pig with makeshift wings, which upsets a then young Aemond who seeks comfort from his mother. In the background, we see a young Helaena examining a millipede in her hands and her simultaneously uttering, “He’ll have to close an eye.” just as Alicent assures Aemond that one day, he’ll get a dragon of his own. In the next episode, we actually do see Aemond lose an eye after Lucerys’ cuts him for stealing Vhagar.
“The last ring has no legs at all.”
Now this comment goes a little unnoticed. It was made during the same scene where she foreshadows Aemond losing his eye, all while still studying the same millipede. The show is currently set to run for at least four seasons and so we probably have to wait a couple of years for this one to play out but it could either pertain to one out of two things: Bran Stark or Helaena’s husband and brother, Aegon II.
In Game of Thrones, Bran Stark loses his ability to walk after suffering a fall in its first season. Somehow, somewhere down the line, in season eight, he ends up on the Iron Throne and is heralded as “Bran the Broken,” making him quite literally, the “last ring” with “no legs.”
If we’re to interpret this using House of the Dragon’s context exclusively, though, it just might be a foreshadowing of Aegon’s fate, which I think is more probable considering that the line before that was meant for Aemond. Again, this is a potential spoiler warning for the next seasons of the show: at the height of the Dance, Aegon finds himself in a battle against Baela in Dragonstone, where both of their dragons end up falling from the sky. Aegon saves himself by jumping off of his dragon’s back and survives but with the price of his legs shattering, leaving him pained and broken for the remainder of his life.
“Beware the beast beneath the boards.”
This line from episode eight left the theory mill churning day and night, especially considering how frantic Helaena was as she kept saying it over and over throughout the episode, even swatting her mother’s hand in the process. The reveal would turn out to be a little more on the nose but just as unexpected and badass as we would hope with Princess Rhaenys quite literally bursting from beneath the Dragon Pit together with her dragon Melys.
Many fans, however, have theorized that this line may also be a foreshadowing of Blood and Cheese, which we can probably expect to happen sometime in season two, based on the trajectory of the timeline of the series so far. The event is probably one of the most heartbreaking and downright devastating things to happen throughout the course of the Dance and primarily involves Helaena, her children, and a pair of hired assassins called Blood and Cheese who navigate the tunnels of the Red Keep to get to them.
“Hand turns loom; spool of green, spool of black. Dragons of flesh, weaving dragons of thread.”
Helaena makes this prophecy in episode seven during Laena Velaryon’s funeral. In the same episode, we see later on that Rhaenyra and Daemon decide to get married to strengthen Rhaenyra’s claim to the Iron Throne (and, well, probably because the tension has been brewing for years). It’s essentially her describing everything going on behind the scenes between the two factions—the spools of green, of course, refer to Otto and Alicent Hightower—as the inevitable question of Viserys’ succession is continuously put to the test as he grows weaker and weaker.
“It is our fate, I think, to crave what is given to another. If one possesses a thing, the other will take it away.”
On the outset, this one feels like another throwaway line but seemingly summarizes almost every character on the show. First, we have Alicent and Rhaenyra’s relationship, where it could be argued that Alicent’s holier-than-thou gig mostly stems from bitterness and regret that she didn’t get to follow her heart like her old friend-turned-stepdaughter. There’s also the envy between Aemond and Aegon, where both know that the former is much more suited but it is the latter who has the birthright.
(Featured Image: HBO)
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