House of the Dragon Recap With Spoilers: "The Lord of the Tides"

WARNING: This article contains major spoilers from the latest episode of House of the Dragon... Rhaenys says that it has been six years since she saw Corlys, as he went out to sea. She's informed that he has a grave injury, having been slashed in the neck and fallen overboard, with a serious illness following the cut. Vaemond brings up the issue of succeeding Corlys on the throne of Driftmark. He believes he deserves it but Rhaenys repeats Corlys' wishes for the throne to pass to Lucerys. He challenges her, saying that Alicent would take his side in a dispute, and she's the one really running things nowadays.

Daemon finds some dragon eggs in the mountains of Dragonstone, and he reveals that three fresh eggs have been laid by Syrax, Rhaenyra's dragon. As he turns them over the be place in the warming chamber, he receives a note with news from Driftmark. He brings the news to Rhaenyra and she is understandably frustrated by Vaemond's plot. By questioning the legitimacy of Lucerys, he's questioning the legitimacy of their entire family and claim to the Iron Throne. Daemon puts a hand on Rhaenyra's stomach, indicating she's pregnant, and they agree to set sail for King's Landing.

No one is there to greet Rhaenyra and Daemon when they arrive in King's Landing. Alicent sits at the head of the table during a council meeting, and it is revealed that Otto orchestrated the not-so-friendly welcome for the Targaryens. They argue over who should take the throne in Driftmark, since no one believes in the legitimacy of Lucerys.

Rhaenyra and Daemon go to visit Viserys, who is in absolutely awful shape. He lies in bed with bandages over most of his face, struggling to breathe and clinging to life by a thread. Daemon tells Viserys about the issues in Stepstones and Driftmark, including Corlys' injury. They let him know that he needs to affirm Lucerys' position as heir to Driftmark. They reveal that they've had two children together, named Aegon and Viserys.

A servant girl is brought to Alicent in tears, saying that she was raped by Aegon II when she brought him wine. Alicent believes her, threatens her about what could happen if she tells anyone, gives her hush money, and has her drink a contraceptive tea. When she confronts Aegon, he doesn't care in the slightest, and doesn't seem to care about any of the responsibilities of the throne, either. "You're no son of mine," she tells him. Alicent then meets with Rhaenyra and Daemon, who question her leadership and her treatment of Viserys during his illness. She's clearly in charge, and the only other person with any real power is her father, the Hand of the King. Together, they're speaking on the King's behalf.

Jacaerys and Lucerys head down to the training grounds to find Aemond, who has grown quite a lot, sparring with Criston Cole and holding his own. He's become a skilled warrior. After he acknowledges his nephews, Vaemond arrives from Driftmark, flanked by House Velaryon's banners. He meets with Alicent and Otto about naming him the heir to Driftmark. Otto says war is looming, and they can't have a child in command of the biggest fleet in the realm.

Rhaenyra meets with Rhaenys, as she has figured out Rhaenys has planned to argue for herself as the ruler of Driftmark, rather than Lucerys or Vaemond. Rhaenyra tries to bargain, proposing her sons marry Laena's daughters, giving both families the Iron Throne and the throne of Driftmark. Rhaenys, convinced Rhaenyra had Laenor killed, says she will be standing alone in the war between the Hightowers and the Targaryens.

Rhaenyra speaks to Viserys in the middle of the night and tells him that if he truly believes in her and believes in the Song of Ice and Fire, he needs to defend her and her children. The next morning, Viserys tells Otto that he wants to have a dinner for the entire family, and he refuses the drugs for the pain that he's been receiving. He opts to deal with the pain in exchange for a clear mind.

The meeting begins to hear petitions for the heir to Driftmark. Vaemond goes first and pleads his case, with Alicent clearly behind him. When Rhaenyra begins, the doors to the hall open and Viserys appears, walking slowly to the Iron Throne with the help of a cane. He says the entire proceeding confuses him, as Corlys settled the matter of his succession a long time ago. He asks Rhaenys to speak, since she's the only one who would know Corlys' wishes. She affirms that he chose Lucerys, and brings up the proposal made by Rhaenyra to wed Laenor's sons to Laena's daughters, agreeing wholeheartedly to the marriages. Viserys considers the matter settled, but Vaemond does not, publicly calling out Rhaenyra's children for being illegitimate, saying they are not Velaryon. He calls them bastards and calls Rhaenyra a whore, prompting Daemon to cut off his head with one swing of his sword.

All of Viserys' family gathers for a meal together, and things among them are as tense as ever. After Viserys pours his heart into a speech, which involves taking off his mask and revealing that half of his face is essentially missing, Rhaenyra and Alicent seem to find some solid ground. They toast one another and try to put the past aside, working together for the betterment of the entire house. Their children, however, don't take the same route. Jacaerys attempts to play nice but he's not met with any love from his uncles, so he offers a hand to Aegon's wife for a dance. Aemond ultimately has the last word, giving a biting toast to his nephews, referring to them as a couple of "Strong boys," alluding to their real parentage.

The servant who was witnessed the accusations against Aegon earlier in the episode is shown in the streets of King's Landing. She meets with Mysaria, the former wife of Daemon, likely sharing information from inside the Red Keep.

The episode ends with Viserys in his bed, speaking to Alicent. He thinks he's talking to Rhaenyra, and talks about the Prince that was Promised. After she gives him his tea and exits the room, the King breathes his last breath.