Three weeks at sea, and at last the sails of Lord Arryn’s fleet were sighted from the high walls of King’s Landing in the afternoon. News spread through the city, which had anticipated this day since the news of King Daeron’s victory came from Sunspear. By the time the ships were still an hour away, the stretch from the red walls to the docks was a veritable sea of people. Nearly all the City Watch, personally led by Ser Richard Harte, marched to the River Gate to make sure all was calm as the Hand, Prince Viserys, rode down from the Red Keep with his daughter Naerys and the king’s siblings. The whole of the court followed in their train, among them the ladies Reyna Rowan, Jyana Arryn, Elanna Penrose, Marian Stark, Carmella Dondarrion, Irena Marbrand, and Aisling Ryswell.
Lord Arryn’s flagship, Ser Artys’s Falcon, was made fast to the dock and from it came the first of the returning heroes: Prince Aemon, the Dragonknight. The crowd cheered his name loudest of all, even though he was upon a litter, still recovering from the wound an assassin’s arrow meant for Daeron gave him. Flowers were thrown towards him, and women openly wept with joy and grief both. Behind him came his brother, Prince Aegon, who all agreed fought bravely in the war. After them, heroes of the war came forward to be greeted by Viserys, among them Sarmion and Tancred Baratheon, Jonn Lannister, Dagur Saltcliffe, Almer Connington, Doran Dondarrion, Bryce Caron, and Benedict Rogers.
Last of all were the hostages from Dorne. The crowd grew restive, throwing rotten fruits and vegetables at them and hurling jeers and insults. The gold cloaks were hard pressed to restrain them. Prince Cadan and Princess Ariana came first before all, and the other of the forty-nine hostages came trailing after. Lanei Fowler and Liane Uller were among those who had journeyed on Ser Artys’s Falcon with the young princess, and Aidan Dayne was among the knights who had travelled on the same vessel as Prince Cadan. Brought before the Hand, they were greeted ... and the informed they had to swear anew the oaths that would bind them as hostages. Prince Cadan protested that they had already done so before King Daeron, beneath the Tower of the Sun in Sunspear. Ser Aidan Dayne urged the prince not to do so again, and others took up the call, yet Viserys would not bend. The crowd, growing restive and angry, convinced the Dornish prince to do as he was bid, and the other Dornishmen had no choice but to do the same.
After this, the a strong force of watchmen escorted the Targaryens, the heroes of the Conquest, and the hostages to the Red Keep. It is said that citizens of the city lined the streets for all that distance, cheering on the conquerors and throwing yet more jeers and offal at the Dornishmen; Lady Liane Uller was injured by a stone thrown from the crowd. Once safe behind the tall, high walls of the Red Keep, the victorious knights and the defeated Dornishmen had time to refresh themselves before a great welcoming feast held in the throne room. Seated with Prince Viserys and the other members of House Targaryen at the high table were the likes of Lord Jonothor Arryn and Lady Taria Buckwell. Ser Jaesin Lannister came late to the feasting, perhaps having waited to visited Prince Aemon. Though the mood at the table where the Dornishmen sat was sullen, and many eyes looked their way, there were few untoward incidents.