Last week's episode of House of the Dragon ended with Daemon Targaryen killing Crabfeeder and winning the Stepstones for the Seven Kingdoms. The seeds of conflict were also watered further with Alicent Hightower's son being pushed as the next heir, much to the anger of Rhaenyra Targaryen. We take a look at this House of the Dragon episode 4 ending explained to learn what happened and where the series is going from here.
House of the Dragon episode 4 ending explained
This week's episode of House of the Dragon starts with Rhaenyra being presented with a line of options to be her husband, much to her annoyance. After being disappointed with the suitors who came forward, the princess sails back to King's Landing, expecting the king to be mad at her. As the ship is sailing on the open seas, what seemed to be Caraxes, Daemon's dragon, almost sinks it.
In the throne room, Daemon comes forth before Viserys wearing a crown he fashioned himself. He gives the king a war hammer and urges him to add it to the chair he's sitting on. Viserys takes note of the crown Daemon is wearing as he explained that he is named King of the Narrow sea. In turn, the prince offers the crown and his title to Viserys as he describes how the war for the Stepstones was concluded. He bids his brother rise as they hug in front of everyone's applause in the throne room.
Out in the open, Viserys seemingly slights Rhaenyra as he puts all of his attention on Daemon and his recent victory. Alicent walks to her and accompanies the princess. The queen relays that the king is angry after he organized the tour for her to find a suitor. The pair then reconcile. Shortly after, Rhaenyra approaches Daemon and they talk about the latter's adventures and the responsibilities they both face.
In a small council meeting, the king and his advisors talk about Ser Corlys Velaryon and a potential alliance between House Velaryon and one of the Free Cities. This causes concern amongst all as Laena Velaryon can be bound to be married to one of the Sea Lords.
Back in her chambers, Rhaenyra discovers a parchment containing a map. She opens the wall panel behind her bed and proceeds to venture further into it. As the princess goes along, she meets Daemon and they go explore the festive environment of King's Landing at night. While this is happening, Viserys is being attended to by Alicent due to the severity of his secret disease.
During a live performance, Rhaenyra witnesses how the small folk really feel about her being named as the heir. Daemon tells her that she should know more about these people if she wishes to rule them. She is then accosted by Ser Harwin, a member of the Kingsguard, who then proceeds to let her go shortly after identifying the princess. They then both enter a brothel and the princess witness an orgy occurring before her very eyes.
After a short slumber, Queen Alicent is summoned by the king. He makes love to him, an act Alicent finds no pleasure in partaking in. As this is happening, Daemon takes Rhaenyra into a room filled with other people making love and seduces her right then and there. After a brief moment, Daemon stops and leaves the princess alone. They are then seen by a child walking away from the establishment.
Rhaenyra returns to her chambers and teases Ser Criston Cole. She seduces the knight and they both make love for the night. Meanwhile, Otto Hightower receives a message coming from a child. This was the same one who saw Daemon and Rhaenyra leave the brothel in King's Landing.
The following morning, Daemon wakes up in Mysaria's chambers after getting drunk the night before. Otto, on the other hand, meets Viserys in his own chambers and speaks to him about Daemon and Rhaenyra being seen together in a pleasure house. In anger, Viserys lashes out at Otto for seemingly spreading lies about his daughter. Furthermore, Alicent heard everything her father said to the king.
For her part, Rhaenyra receives a message from the queen to talk alone. Alicent tells the princess about Otto's accusations concerning her and Daemon. Rhaenyra explains what happened the night before as the queen tells her that the king's plans of finding a good match can be ruined.
Daemon is taken before the king as he faces the same accusation Rhaenyra did. Drunk before his brother, Viserys asks for the princess' hand in marriage. The king responds in anger and banishes him back to the Vale, back to Daemon's lawful wife. Meanwhile, Alicent speaks to the king and stands by the princess throughout all of her accusations. Rhaenyra then meets her father, who proceeds to explain Aegon the Conqueror's vision of the Prince that was promised.
After such, Viserys admonishes her for all the accusations being thrown her way. He proclaims that she will wed Laenor Velaryon, much to the annoyance of Rhaenyra. She tells him what needs to be done with Otto and his ambition to name Aegon as heir. After that meeting, Viserys speaks with Otto and accuses him of placing Alicent as his wife to further the interests of House Hightower. The king then relieves Otto from being the Hand because he can no longer trust his judgment.
At night, a maester enters Rhaenyra's room and presents a drink that will abort any potential child she is carrying. This is done to rid her of any problems involving her upcoming union with Laenor.
What just happened? A House of the Dragon episode 4 recap
The first three episodes dealt with the dilemma of Viserys' succession as the pieces around him – Rhaenyra, Daemon, Alicent, and Daemon – all contribute to the worsening of this problem. For her part, the princess almost gets involved with Daemon, her uncle, a development that causes so much worry on the part of the king and queen. This also leads the way for Viserys to relieve Otto as Hand of the King after Rhaenyra accuses him of pushing for his grandson, Aegon, to be named heir.
These developments push the series further into chaos as all the pieces on the board vie for power and the Iron Throne. It remains to be seen in the coming episodes how these storylines will converge and play out in the upcoming Targaryen civil war.