In House of the Dragon, King Viserys’ death is a critical point as this was the starting point of the Civil War, aka The Dance of the Dragons, i.e.
DOD is basically the war between Aegon II Targaryen and his older sister Rhynera Targaryen for the Iron Throne.
When King Viserys became ill and died at age 52 during 129 AC, his death was kept a secret, and his second wife, Alison Hightower, concealed this from the public.
Before dying, King Viserys I Targaryen named his firstborn daughter Rhaenyra Targaryen born to his first wife, Aemma Arryn, to be his heir and successor on the Iron Throne.
But, after King Viserys’s death, some of the Targaryens supported Aegon II, the son born to King Viserys’s second wife, Alison Hightower, to claim the Throne rather than Queen Rhaenyra.
This created a civil war between the Targaryens themselves and is known as the Dance of the Dragons.
The Greens, aka Queen’s party, the faction of House Targaryen loyal to the rise of Aegon II as King of the Seven Kingdoms, was opposed by The Blacks, aka The Party of the Princess, the loyalists who supported the rise of Rhaenyra Targaryen as Queen of the Seven Kingdoms.
One of the most asked questions is: Which dragon killed Rhaenyra? Who killed Rhaenyra Targaryen?
Which dragon killed Rhaenyra? Who killed Rhaenyra Targaryen? Who eats Rhaenyra Targaryen?
Rhaenyra Targaryen was killed by Aegon II, who ordered his dragon Sunfyre to burn her alive and then eat her, and Aegon II forced Aegon III (Rhaenyra’s youngest son), who was small at that time, to watch his mother getting devoured by Sunfyre.
Towards the end of the Civil War, aka Dance of the Dragons, Rhaenyra Targaryen managed to claim the Iron Throne.
Aegon II Targaryen fled from King’s Landing and went to Dragonstone with the help of the remnants of The Greens.
After that, Rhaenyra Targaryen sat on the Iron Throne for six months, and because of this, Rhaenyra was called The Half-Yearly Queen.
Just like her father, King Viserys, she also started getting cuts from Throne, which suggested that the Throne had rejected her and she was not fit to be a queen.
Rhaenyra Targaryen also managed to capture Aegon’s wife and sister, Helaena Targaryen as a prisoner of war; Rhaenyra also ordered the knights to pursue those who had helped Aegon flee the city.
Also, when King Viserys died, he left loads of gold and treasure in the treasury for his children.
But, when Rhaenyra took the Throne, she discovered that most of the treasures were gone.
The Greens took most of the gold away for safekeeping, so all Rhaenyra was left with a quarter of the treasure; her brother and the Greens already took the rest.
This was a difficult time to rule as a Queen. Because of the civil war, the Crown desperately needed financial support, and with only one-quarter of the treasure left, Queen Rhaenyra had no choice but to raise the taxes.
Therefore soon, the smallfolk and the commoners started hating her and comparing her with King Maegor, the cruel for raising taxes and making their life difficult.
Rhaenyra was called names such as King Maegor with t#its and the w#ore of Dragonstone.
Plus, when Helaena Targaryen (Aegon II’s wife) committed suicide in captivity.
The smallfolk believed that it was Rhaenyra Targaryen who had killed Helaena.
After that, the final nail in the coffin was when House Valerion also abandoned Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen’s side.
A massive riot occurred in the city because of the high taxes and Helaena Targaryen’s death.
Therefore, Queen Rhaenyra had no other option but to flee King’s Landing and sell her Crown to buy safe passage.
Queen Rhaenyra decided to go to Dragonstone, unaware that her brother Aegon II was already there.
Upon reaching the Dragonstone, she was betrayed by her closest, Ser Alfred Broome, a knight from House Broome. He killed all her Queens Guard and handed her over to Aegon.
After that, Aegon II Targaryen held her captive, tortured her, and later sentenced her to death by dragon fire, where Queen Rhaenyra was fed to Aegon’s dragon Sunfyre.
While Rhaenyra was burnt alive and eaten by Sunfyre, Aegon also ensured that Rhaenyra’s young son Aegon II watched his mother die.
So this is how Rhaenyra died, and the Sunfyre dragon killed her.