Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark ~ The Love Story

"Rhaegar fought valiantly, 
Rhaegar fought nobly. 
And Rhaegar died."
―Jorah Mormont
Game of Thrones | Robert and Lyanna
Prince Rhaegar Targaryen was the eldest son and heir to King Aerys II Targaryen, holding the title of Prince of Dragonstone. He was the older brother of Viserys and Daenerys Targaryen and husband of Elia Martell, with whom he had two children: Rhaenys and Aegon Targaryen. Secretly, however, his marriage to Elia had been annulled and he remarried to Lyanna Stark. Together, the two secretly had a son: Jon Snow, who was raised by Lyanna's brother Eddard Stark as his bastard son to protect the child from those that sought the destruction of House Targaryen after Robert's Rebellion.
 Rhaegar was said to have ignited the rebellion after allegedly abducting Lyanna Stark. Lyanna's betrothed, Lord Robert Baratheon, slew Rhaegar at the climactic Battle of the Trident.
Rhaegar and Lyanna
Background
Prince Rhaegar Targaryen was the eldest son and heir to the Mad King, Aerys II Targaryen, by his sister/wife Queen Rhaella Targaryen. Tywin Lannister, who served as Aerys's faithful Hand of the King for nearly twenty years, desired that he would agree to a marriage between Rhaegar and his own daughter Cersei. Young Cersei herself hoped that she would marry Rhaegar some day. King Aerys denied the request, however, and insulted Tywin by indicating that such a match would be beneath Rhaegar.

Instead, Rhaegar was married to his distant cousin Princess Elia Martell of Dorne, with whom he had a daughter named Rhaenys and then a son named Aegon.
During the great Tourney of Harrenhal, where all the prominent lords of Westeros assembled, Rhaegar faced off against Ser Barristan Selmy in the final tilt and won. Instead of giving the victor's wreath to his own wife Elia, however, the entire crowd of hundreds of people fell silent as he rode past her and gave it to Lyanna Stark of Winterfell, to name her as the tournament's Queen of Love and Beauty. This was doubly controversial, as Lyanna was herself already betrothed to marry Robert Baratheon. Some months later, under as-yet unknown circumstances, Rhaegar abducted Lyanna.
Lyanna's oldest brother Brandon then rode to King's Landing to demand the return of his sister, but King Aerys imprisoned him. When their father Rickard went south to demand his son's release, he was imprisoned as well. The Mad King then brutally executed both of them by burning Lord Rickard alive with wildfire in front of the Iron Throne and baiting Brandon to strangle himself to death. In response, Eddard Stark and Lyanna's betrothed, Robert Baratheon, joined forces with several other houses to overthrow the Targaryen dynasty. This war became known as the War of the Usurper or Robert's Rebellion. After initially remaining away from the fighting in Dorne, Rhaegar was summoned to lead the Royalist forces in what would be the climactic confrontation of the war, the Battle of the Trident.
Lyanna's oldest brother Brandon then rode to King's Landing to demand the return of his sister, but King Aerys imprisoned him. When their father Rickard went south to demand his son's release, he was imprisoned as well. The Mad King then brutally executed both of them by burning Lord Rickard alive with wildfire in front of the Iron Throne and baiting Brandon to strangle himself to death. In response, Eddard Stark and Lyanna's betrothed, Robert Baratheon, joined forces with several other houses to overthrow the Targaryen dynasty. This war became known as the War of the Usurper or Robert's Rebellion. After initially remaining away from the fighting in Dorne, Rhaegar was summoned to lead the Royalist forces in what would be the climactic confrontation of the war, the Battle of the Trident.
The rebel army continued on to King's Landing - but Tywin Lannister's army arrived there first. Feigning that he had come to help Aerys, Tywin really saw that with Rhaegar dead the Targaryen cause was lost, and was there to betray him to gain favor with the rebels after the war ended. After being let inside the gates, Tywin's army promptly began to brutally sack the entire city. Rhaegar's father the Mad King was himself killed by his own Kingsguard, Tywin's son Jaime Lannister (to stop him from enacting the Wildfire plot to burn down the city). Meanwhile, Lannister soldiers gained entry into the Red Keep. Ser Gregor Clegane, known as "the Mountain that Rides", cornered Rhaegar's wife and two small children in the royal apartments. Gregor killed Rhaenys and baby Aegon while their mother Elia watched helplessly, then raped Elia, before killing her too.

Shortly before the sack, however, Rhaegar's heavily pregnant mother Queen Rhaella had been sent to safety on Dragonstone island, along with his younger brother Viserys. Not long after they arrived, however, Rhaella died giving birth to Rhaegar's younger sister, Daenerys Targaryen. Viserys and his newborn sister then fled into exile in the Free Cities, across the Narrow Sea, before Robert's soldiers could arrive on the island.
Lyanna Stark did not survive much longer: after arriving at King's Landing in the aftermath of the sack, her brother Eddard rode south with his companions searching for her, before finding her at the Tower of Joy in the western mountains of Dorne, protected by the last of the Targaryen Kingsguard under the legendary Ser Arthur Dayne, who had been ordered to keep her safe by Rhaegar himself. Eddard and his companions fought them in an epic confrontation, at the end of which all were dead except for himself and the wounded Howland Reed.

Eddard raced inside only to find that Lyanna was dying from childbirth to Rhaegar's last child and heir. Lyanna made Eddard promise to keep him safe because if Robert ever found out that Rhaegar had a surviving son, he would kill him. Eddard departed with Rhaegar and Lyanna's newborn son and took him back to Winterfell, where he passed him off as his own bastard son fathered on the campaign: Jon Snow.

Source: HERE

Barristan Selmy: "Viserys never told you?"
Daenerys Targaryen: "He told me Rhaegar was good at killing people."
Barristan Selmy: "Rhaegar never liked killing. He loved singing."
— Ser Barristan recounts his time with Rhaegar.

Before his alleged abduction of Lyanna Stark, Prince Rhaegar Targaryen is said to have been a very popular figure in the Seven Kingdoms in contrast to his erratic father, King Aerys. Despite the superb skills he displayed while participating in the Great Tourney at Harrenhal, where he mysteriously crowned Lyanna as the Queen of Love and Beauty instead of his own wife Elia Martell. Ser Barristan Selmy (whom Rhaegar had unhorsed in the final joust) described Rhaegar as a peaceful man who much preferred singing over fighting and killing.

Rhaegar was a highly intelligent person who loved to read, so much that he was late in his decision to take up swordsmanship. He was an extremely charismatic man, shown by the fact that those who followed him were loyal to him and some believed him to be the finest man they ever met. However, this loyalty would come at a cost to some people, including Rhaegar himself. For example, Ser Arthur Dayne and Ser Gerold Hightower did not accompany Rhaegar at the Battle of the Trident because Rhaegar had ordered them to stay at the Tower of Joy and guard Lyanna thus Rhaegar had ultimately doomed them to die at the hands of Lyanna's brother, Eddard.
Although Rhaegar proved to have been admirable enough that a great many men followed him to defeat at the Trident because they believed in him and his cause, there were those, mainly Robert Baratheon, who viewed Rhaegar as an evil man. This is probably a biased opinion since Robert was plunged into depression by the loss of the woman he claimed to love, and the common theory that Rhaegar abducted her made him a cruel man in Robert's mind. Oberyn Martell also had an unfavorable view of Rhaegar for running off with Lyanna and leaving his sister, Elia. Also, Viserys Targaryen, Rhaegar's younger brother, thought that Rhaegar loved to kill people, derived from the basis that he was a great warrior, leading to Daenerys developing the same assumption. However, Daenerys would eventually hear a dramatically different account from Ser Barristan about Rhaegar.
Rhaegar was very different from his father Aerys, and did not express the bloodthirst, obsession or pyromania that Aerys had done, therefore he presumably did not suffer the Targaryen madness that his family was legendary for. Although it was largely his father's brutal execution of Rickard and Brandon Stark, Lyanna's father and brother, that turned half the realm against the Targaryens and led to the deaths of tens of thousands, it can be argued that Rhaegar is not without blame. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding his alleged kidnapping of Lyanna and their apparent conception of Jon Snow, the fact remains that Rhaegar recklessly stole another man's betrothed. He might have eventually realized his mistake in taking Lyanna without an explanation, and hoped to end the rebellion without having to kill Eddard or Robert (which could explain why the latter ultimately killed him instead), but whatever plans Rhaegar had for restoring Targaryen rule over the Seven Kingdoms, despite the blowback that resulted due to his aforementioned actions, ultimately died with him. His other two children, Rhaenys and Aegon, also ultimately perished due in part to Rhaegar's unexplained actions. It is unknown whether or not Rhaegar merely lusted after Lyanna, or if he truly loved her. However, the fact that Lyanna, in her final moments, implored her brother Eddard to protect their son from Robert's wrath lends credence to the possibility that she loved Rhaegar.
It is uncertain whether Rhaegar's relationship with his wife Elia Martell was loving. Oberyn Martell expressed disdain towards Rhaegar for "leaving her for another woman" (Lyanna) and insisted that Elia loved her husband dearly, but despite Elia having born him two children, it is never stated in the series whether Rhaegar truly returned her love; the fact that he publicly chose Lyanna at the tournament over Elia implies he did not.

"In my dreams, I kill him every night."
―Robert Baratheon shows his undying hatred of Rhaegar.

"Your brother Rhaegar was the last dragon."
―Jorah Mormont to Daenerys Targaryen

"When your brother Rhaegar led his army into battle at the Trident, men died for him because they believed in him, because they loved him. I fought beside the last dragon on that day, your Grace. I bled beside him."
―Ser Barristan Selmy to Daenerys

Daenerys Targaryen: "Did you know him well, Ser Barristan?"
Barristan Selmy: "I did, your Grace. Finest man I ever met."
Daenerys Targaryen: "I wish I had known him, but he was not the last dragon."
— Rhaegar Targaryen remembered.

The queen of love and beauty ~
In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, the tradition holds that the victor in a tournament may select any woman present and name her the queen of love and beauty, crowning her with a wreath of flowers and dedicating his victory to her.
The victorious knight often chooses a woman he loves or intends to court, and it can be a source of scandal if the victor crowns a woman already bound to another man, or if a married man crowns someone other than his wife. Since both of these cases were true when Prince Rhaegar Targaryen crowned Lyanna Stark after winning a tourney at Harrenhal, it was particularly scandalous.
Jon Snow || The Prince That Was Promised
Jon Snow- A Wolf With Dragon's Blood
Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen - Wicked Game (Ep5)

Love and light,
Trace
xoxo

Monday, 14 August 2017

Soul of a Star

Glitter from the sky

my hand reaches out to you

fingers play with light

~ Tracey-anne

Rihanna - Diamonds

Chance and Bethany

Richard Madden Lily James
Chance and Bethany

The mental imagery of 'A carpet of purple flowers’ inspired me in such a magical way, that I felt compelled to write my first novel. Once I started to place pen to paper, the story began to grow into a much greater tale. Maybe, every creative whimsy that I have ever envisaged and not acted on, has waited until now to be brought to life.

My mind raced as folklore came entwined with love, fate entwined with choice, science entwined with spiritual teachings - all guiding me to write a romance that revolves around a karmic cycle. Let me share with you a secret place in which only a parted veil exposes. To an ethereal plane in which otherworldly, angelic type beings, tend to a well of souls. In the book, I take the reader on a brief, visual journey to the home of these elementals called, 'The Sindria', their realm, 'Calageata'. It is here that the purple flower of Vororbla grows, emitting a thick mist ready to greet the essence of a soul.
What keeps us going when the world can feel so harsh?

Where do we draw our strength from in times of need?

What urges us to carry on when things become extremely overwhelming and too much to bear?

We all know the answer... it comes from within.

Somewhere, deep inside, a light refuses to fade.

This light (our inner strength) may become less bright for a time, but in its fading, it is re-energising, and will again, awaken from sleep. Once, our inner light screams out its very last ray of hope, the sleeping energy awakes, re-igniting the inner dimming ray. It is reminiscent of an illuminating birth of a far away star, and from apparent nothingness, wondrous brightness can evolve.

The Sindria teach… 'To be able to shine more brightly, one's light must first fade.’
In the book, I mention to 'keep your light bright' as we've all experienced at some point in our lives, a time when nothing makes sense, a time when life can feel like it's too much to bear, and I really wanted to send out an important message to my readers – that you are so much more than what you initially see, and to remember, a fading light secretly masks an eternity. Our light never truly diminishes, and we can always shine bright, again.
Bea lives a simple life residing in a South London second-hand bookshop. It had been an especially difficult year, first with Bea’s uncle dying, then splitting up with Brandon, her philandering, druggie boyfriend. The shop's trivial daily conversations, local faces, and calm, was all she desired, but that was all about to change.
            ‘Four Souls & Three Hearts’
The future is not set in stone and the choices that we make ripple through the cosmos. No matter what form your soul takes, there are consequences for one's actions in which time has no relevance – 
we call it karma, they call it Vo-ror-bla.
No-one expects to bump into supernatural beings, let alone two opposing sects of a forgotten race. Bea’s quiet existence turns into turmoil as she slowly starts to unravel a secret past. A lost history in which love, revenge, betrayal, magic, power, and karma are not mere cycles of a soul, but a sacred journey upon a web of many possibilities.
Tantric sex is an ancient Hindu practice that has been going for over 5,000 years, and means 'the weaving and expansion of energy'. It's a slow form of sex that's said to increase intimacy and create a mind-body connection.  In this way, you're sharing all of yourself with your partner. 
The heart breath to tune into each other. Stand opposite one another and look into each other's eyes placing your left hand on your partner's heart. He should then place his hand over your left one and you should try to match each other's breathing for at least two minutes.
 Crossing the veil between worlds…

A light bright
a loud cry in the night
makes way for a soul in the dark
gliding through time
a passage ethereal sublime
a story forgotten renewed

mingling the past into the future
a haze blinding most
glamour hides a host
the spiritual warrior has eyes to see
but not until he falls to his knees

the figure in shadow feels the heart of the broken
crushing love not forgotten
gripping mist
chasing dreams
karma eludes or so it seems

circles and cycles
souls entwined
something at work
possibly divine

by Tracey-anne
 Souls forever entwined
***Amazon U.K Bestselling*** 

Inspirational Romance  ~ Fairy Tales ~ Mythology & Folk Tales

Love and Light,
Trace
xoxo

Character Storybook ~ A Carpet of Purple Flowers

A Carpet of Purple Flowers~ Book One
Give me Love by Ed Sheeran

The dance and dinner scene are one of my favourites in book one. I guess, the slow imagery of shy intimacy playing out as a film through my mind, remained, and of course, that is also the night of the first mead encounter. When I saw this gif, I just had to share it along with the song they danced to. 
Richard Madden Lily James
Chance and Bethany
Chance Character Board ~ HERE
Bethany Character Board ~ HERE
Martin Marcisovsky Photography ~
Coldfall Woods
Update:
I'm editing 'Awake in Purple Dreams' book two, but it's taking longer due to illness and general craziness of life keeping me busy. So sorry for the delay.
I have a few beta readers that also need to review prior to the last edit, so, I'm still hoping to be finished this year but contemplating releasing/publishing next year. I'll keep you updated.
ACoPF Book Trailer ~ Character Version 
Love and light,
Trace
xoxo

Romeo and Juliet ~ Romance

Lily James and Richard Madden

Credit ~ Johan Persson

Des'ree - I'm Kissing You


Pride can stand a thousand trials
The strong will never fall
But watching stars without you my soul cried
Heaving heart is full of pain
Oh, oh, the aching
'Cause, I'm kissing you oh
I'm kissing you oh
Touch me deep, pure and true gift to me forever
'Cause, I'm kissing you
Oh, I'm kissing you, oh
Where are you now?
Where are you now?
Cause, I'm kissing you
I'm kissing you, oh


Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy written by William Shakespeare early in his career about two young star-crossed lovers whose deaths ultimately reconcile their feuding families. It was among Shakespeare's most popular plays during his lifetime and along with Hamlet, is one of his most frequently performed plays. Today, the title characters are regarded as archetypal young lovers.
Romeo and Juliet belongs to a tradition of tragic romances stretching back to antiquity. The plot is based on an Italian tale translated into verse as The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet by Arthur Brooke in 1562 and retold in prose in Palace of Pleasure by William Painter in 1567. 
Shakespeare borrowed heavily from both but expanded the plot by developing a number of supporting characters, particularly Mercutio and Paris. Believed to have been written between 1591 and 1595, the play was first published in a quarto version in 1597. The text of the first quarto version was of poor quality, however, and later editions corrected the text to conform more closely with Shakespeare's original.

Love and light,
Trace
xoxo

When the first flowers opened on Earth, this is what they looked like...

Revealed: the first ever flower, 140m years ago, looked like a magnolia.

Although most species of plants on Earth have flowers, the evolutionary origin of flowers themselves are shrouded in mystery. Flowers are the sexual organs of more than 360,000 species of plants alive today, all derived from a single common ancestor in the distant past. This ancestral plant, alive sometime between 250m and 140m years ago, produced the first flowers at a time when the planet was warmer, and richer in oxygen and greenhouse gases than today. A time when dinosaurs roamed primeval landscapes. But despite the fact dinosaurs went extinct 65m years ago we have a better idea of what an Iguanodon looked like than of how the ancestral flower was built.

This is partly because these first flowers left no traces. Flowers are fragile structures that only in the luckiest of circumstances can be transformed into fossils. And, as no fossil has been found dating back 140m or more years, scientists have only had a limited sense of what the ultimate ancestor would have looked like. Until now.

A major new study by an international team of botanists has achieved the best reconstruction to date of this ancestral flower. The research, published in Nature Communications, relies not so much on fossils as on studying the characteristics of 800 of its living descendant species.

By comparing the similarities and differences among related flowering plants, it is possible to infer the characteristics of their recent ancestors. For example, because all orchid species have flowers in which one half is the mirror image of the other (bilateral symmetry), we can suppose that their ancestor must have had bilateral flowers. By comparing those recent ancestors to each other it is then possible to go a step further back in time, and so on, until eventually we reach the base of the flowering plants’ family tree.

So what did it look like?

In some respects, the original flower resembles a modern magnolia: it has multiple, undifferentiated “petals” (technically tepals), arranged in concentric rings. At its centre there are multiple rows of sexual organs including pollen-producing stamens and ovule-bearing ovaries. It is hard to resist the temptation to imagine ancient pollinators crawling in this flower, collecting pollen grains while unknowingly helping the plant to produce seeds.

A controversial sex life

The new study helps to settle the controversy about whether early flowers had separate sexes, or whether both male and female reproductive organs were combined in the same flower. Previous evidence pointed to different answers. On the one hand, one of the earliest diverging lineages of flowering plants, represented nowadays only by a rare shrub from the Pacific island of New Caledonia called Amborella, has flowers that are either male or female. On the other, most modern species combine both sexes in the same flower.

The authors of the study settle the question and show that the ancestral flower was a hermaphrodite. This means that early flowering plants could reproduce both as a male and a female. Combined sexes can be advantageous when colonising new environments as a single individual can be its own mate, and indeed many plant species colonising remote oceanic islands tend to be hermaphrodite. Maybe the combination of sexes helped early flowering plants to outcompete their rivals.
Despite the apparent similarity with some modern flowers, their ultimate ancestor has a few surprises up its sleeve. For example, botanist have long thought that early flowers had floral parts arranged in a spiral around the centre of the flower as can be seen in modern species such as the star anise.
The new reconstruction, though, strongly suggests that early flowers had their organs arranged not in a spiral, but in series of concentric circles or “whorls”, as in most modern plants. The early flower had more numerous whorls, however, suggesting flowers have become simpler over time. Paradoxically, this simpler architecture may have given modern plants a more stable base upon which to evolve and achieve more complex tasks such as sophisticated interaction with certain insects as in orchids, or the production of “flower heads” made of dozens or hundreds of simpler flowers as in the sunflower family.
Although now we have a good idea of what one of the earliest flowers may have looked like, we still know little about how that flower came to be. The detailed steps leading to its evolution are unknown. Perhaps we will have to wait for the discovery of new fossil flowers spanning the gap around 250m-140m years ago, before we can understand the very origin of what is the most diverse sexual structure on the planet.
Source: HERE
Birth of a Star ~ Blooming Star Flower =  Light = Life
'Shine Bright'

Love and light,
Trace
xoxo