Not all has been happy news, since the death of the outlaw Lord Andrey Blackmont. It transpires that the king had sought to force Blackmont to a parley by making use of his children, hostages in the Red Keep. Among them was his daughter Valeria, whom had been betrothed to the heir of Storm’s End, Ser Tancred Baratheon. Some at court thought that this was merely a ploy, others that it showed the subtle intrigues of Corwen Baratheon. Regardless, with Andrey Blackmont’s death, the king saw fit to dispossess Valeria’s elder brother of his inheritance, instead accepting her fealty as the Lady of Blackmont. This was surely a rich prize for Ser Tancred, to practically rule in all but name one of the great houses of Dorne, with Blackmont perched above the Prince’s Pass where all manners of tolls and tariffs might be extracted. With the vulture gone, a much-needed route for the caravans would surely see greater use—not only to supply the remaining forces of the king, but to bring grain to Dorne and Dornish yew, oranges, lemons, and more to the rest of the Seven Kingdoms.
Yet then the lady revealed that the marriage to Ser Tancred would not go forward: she was already secretly wed to a fellow hostage, Ser Kay Yronwood, and that she carried his child. Rage would be the mildest word for the reaction both from the lady’s betrothed and the king. The Young Dragon immediately demanded of the High Septon that it be annulled, but it seems that some of the Most Devout have frustrated him by insisting that the High Septon must take time to give the matter proper consideration; the cynical might say that they are more ambitious than pious, seeking to exert more control over their affairs.
Though temporarily checked, however, the king has found other means to exert punishment. If Ser Tancred has been denied a duel with Ser Kay, and indeed the king seems most unwilling to offer up their heads as well—mindful of his promise to guard his hostages against harm—then at least the king has separated the two. And now word runs that both have been denied freedom of the city, and that once more guardsmen escort them wherever they go, even in the Red Keep. More, it’s said Ser William Waxley has ordered quarters in the Kitchen Keep prepared, so that the lovers will no longer reside in the Dornish Tower together.
But that, it seems, is the least of it. From the offices of the Master of Law, a bill of attainder has been constructed, and travels now to the small council for the king to sign and seal it: Lady Valeria will be Lady of Blackmont no more, nor shall any Blackmont hold the seat again. To whom will this rich prize go? The Baratheons have a claim on it, for Ser Tancred’s dignity if nothing else, to be sure. Others, too, might lay a claim—Ser Wallace Chester, who helped win the castle for Daeron during the war, has sent messages hard on the news of Andrey Blackmont’s death, recommending a nephew to his grace—but King Daeron has been known to send word to Storm’s End that he hopes to consult with Lord Corwen on the matter.