In the last episode of the first season of House of the Dragon, Daemon Targaryen already warned that he will need more people to fly the dragons that give the strength advantage to Rhaenyra’s supporters. For fans of the book, it’s one of the coolest hints of some remarkable characters, like the brothers Alyn and Addan of Hull. We still don’t know who Addan will be, but Abubakar Salim has been confirmed as Alyn and he’s what we’re going to talk about here.
The brothers, bastards by birth and legitimized as Velaryons, they are presented as heirs of Laenor, the “dead” son of Ser Corlys Velaryon and Rhaenys Targaryen. In the book, Laenor has relations with Rhaenyra, even though he is gay, so there is relative doubt about the paternity of her first children. In the series, however, everything is much clearer. To make things even more confusing, instead of actually being killed, Laenor ‘runs away’, leaving Rhaenyra’s shoulders with the suspicion of his providential death so that she can marry Daemon. To make matters worse, this means that for the second time, her heirs are not legitimate, but that is a topic for another post. Returning to the Hulls, in the book they may even be children of Laenor, or, as is also suspected, children of Corlys himself. To see how they decide in the series. There’s still the theory and space that Addan is actually Laenor… maybe that’s why they still haven’t revealed who will play him in House of the Dragon yet, although @housethedragons on Twitter has hinted at the possibility of Normal People‘s Clinton Liberty joining the cast and to be confirmed as Addan, which would destroy that fan version.
Children of a commoner woman, Marilda, who never admitted who fathered her children until she had to, raised Addan and Alyn at sea like the Velaryons. As a child, Alyn, who was always the “bold, proud, stubborn and insolent” of the brothers, tried to ride a Sheepstealer, being marked by deep scars from the experience. When they are called to fight for Rhaenyra, Addan manages to tame Seasmoke, Laenor’s dragon. Alyn, on the other hand, unsuccessfully sought Gray Ghost and tried again to control Sheepstealer, being burned in the process and escaping with his life because Addan helps him.
Well, in the midst of the drama between the Targaryens, Rhaenys’ life will be one of the prices and to support the suspicion that Addan is actually Ser Corlys’ son, Rhaenyra allows that in addition to legitimizing the brothers as Velaryons, without their children ‘with Laenor ‘ alive, the Queen authorizes her ex-father-in-law to name Addan as the heir of Driftmark, especially after he flies in Seasmoke. Here the pause to reaffirm that while they do not disclose the name of the actor who will play Addan, it reinforces the theory of Laenor’s return to the series.
But we’re talking about House of the Dragon, happy endings are not Westeros’ forte.
Paranoia among Rhaenyra’s allies, especially the Queen, begins after Hugh Hammer and Ulf the White betray her. The brothers Alyn and Addan are questioned, relying only on the defense of Ser Corlys, who calls them “true Velaryons”. Even so, Rhaenyra has Addan arrested, who flees but returns to help in the victory of the Second Battle of Tumbleton, where he gives his life to the Queen. The tragic test of loyalty drives an incurable rift between Rhaenyra and Corlys. Without Addan, who will be heir to Driftmark? Right: Alyn.
With Ser Corlys starting to support the Greens, Daemon supposedly dead, her first sons and dragons murdered and increasingly isolated, Rhaenyra flees the crowd of King’s Landing and falls into the clutches of Aegon II, who immediately condemns her to death and delivers her to his dragon Sunfyre, in Dragonstone. Before that happens, it is Alyn Velaryon who is gathering a fleet to try to save her, but there is no time. Due to the agreement between Corlys and Alicent, in Rhaenyra’s place, Alyn transports the victorious King Aegon II back to the capital.
In the short reign of Rhaenyra’s brother, Alyn leads the successful maritime defenses of Westeros. But Corlys realizes that if Rhaneyra was out of control, Aegon II was not far behind. The king refuses to abdicate the Crown and therefore the Serpent of the Sea makes another change of position and participates in the plot that eliminates Aegon anyway. The king was found dead of poisoning.
But luck is on Corlys’ side, even if he jumps between factions often. Ser Cregan Stark, who happens to be the Hand of the new King, Aegon III, wanted to put him to death for treason (double, by this point) but is officially convinced by Alysanne Blackwood to spare him. Historians credit the power of Alyn and his fleet as the real reason, with the northern lord wisely avoiding creating new conflict by executing Ser Corlys. Anyway, Alyn will be present at the wedding between Aegon III and Jaehaera Targaryen, which should mark the end of House of the Dragon.
His story goes further, naturally.
With the – natural – death of Ser Corlys Velaryon, Alyn has to dispute his position as heir to Driftmark with Daemion and Daeron Velaryon, two of the five sons of Vaemond Velaryon (the one in the series whose tongue was kept by Daemon, but not his head ), but Aegon III ignores their claim and retains Alyn as the new Lord of Driftmark. Unfortunately, Vaemond’s other children are like their father: bellicose and ambitious. In the book, they lost their tongue along with their father, when they were questioning the legitimacy of Rhaenyra’s children, and are known as The Silent Five. As they are not in the series, we will have to consider that they could still speak. Anyway, they challenge the King and try to kill Alyn, but are defeated. One is killed and the other is sent to the Wall and the Night’s Watch.
With so many obstacles overcome, Alyn Velaryon also hopes to follow the tradition of Ser Corlys and be retained in Aegon III’s Council, as Lord of the Tides. However, the new Hand of the King, Ser Tyland Lannister chooses another lord for the position. Unlucky in gambling, lucky in love. Alyn marries Corlys’s granddaughter Baela Targaryen, continuing the Velaryon bloodline.
In just two years, with the death of Ser Tyland, Alyn achieves a prominent political position, but he still has enemies in King’s Landing, in particular his opponent Admiral, Lord Unwin Peake who against Aegon III’s will ends up being the Hand of the King. Peake demands that Alyn helps in the War of the Daughters, where acting without respecting his orders, Alyn gains popularity and respect from the citizens of Westeros and is finally named Master of Ships.
His career is marked by adventures and challenges, all of which he manages to overcome. He can relate to the Martells in Dorne (with support from Princess Aliandra) as well as the Highhtowers (he is friends with Ser Lyonel and Samantha Tarly), he is also popular with the religious in Citatel. One of the most important moments of this trajectory is when Alyn discovers that Viserys II, son of Rhaenyra and Daemon, disappeared after the attack in the battle that cost Jacaerys his life, and spent all these years in captivity in Lys, but is alive. It is Ser Alyn who negotiates his freedom and returns him home. Baela, who was engaged to Jacaerys and is Viserys II’s half-sister, is happily married to Alyn. The two are Laena’s parents (named after her mother).
Happy ending? Calm down!
Alyn still participates in various conflicts that arise in the seven kingdoms and little by little the fortune of the Velaryons feels the consequence. He needs to go on commercial trips to pay his debts, and he manages to recover his brother’s bones and bury him with honors, in a tomb where instead of a name he writes only “Loyal”. He continues to participate by the sea in political battles that do not stop repeating and have children in and out of his marriage. In addition to Baela, he is involved with Princess Elaena Targaryen, with whom he has twins Jon and Jeyne Waters. Alyn’s fate is mysterious. He ‘disappears’ into the sea, never to be found again. Elaena has waited for him for a year but, without news, agrees to marry another.
The incredible life of Alyn Velaryon would make a series in its own right, but it’s not part of HBO’s current projects. There’s the spin-off about the adventures of young Ser Corlys Velaryon in development, but the entire narrative of the “bastard-born” Lord is filled with twists and turns and drama. We won’t even see half of it, with the possibility of perhaps bringing forward Viserys II’s release and certainly including his marriage to Baela.
After shining as Father in Raised by Wolves, it would be inclusive and wonderful to have Abubakar Salim featured in such a fascinating story. And to keep the dream, it’s worth knowing the whole story and understanding the importance of your role in House of the Dragon. A super addition to the cast.