Wiki of Westeros

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Wiki of Westeros
Wiki of Westeros
This page is about the sellsword company. For other uses, see: Second Sons (disambiguation)

Mero: "The Second Sons have faced worse odds and won."
Jorah: "The Second Sons have faced worse odds and run."
Mero and Ser Jorah Mormont[src]

The Second Sons[1] is a sellsword company operating in Essos, with members recruited from various Free Cities and fighting as heavy cavalry. Typical sellswords, they are a rowdy, rough-and-tumble private army who fight for coin and the highest bidder. Like many sellsword companies, however, they recognize that once they accept a contract from one side of a conflict they cannot break it and switch to the other side, even for promise of higher pay, since they would be seen as unreliable and would have trouble being hired.

The name of the company comes from the tradition of firstborn children in noble or wealthy families receiving inheritance, property and titles from their parents, while second sons receive nothing. Second sons (and younger) therefore often seek their fortunes in the wider world by joining sellsword companies.

Under the leadership of Daario Naharis, the Second Sons have pledged their loyalty to Daenerys Targaryen. After successfully liberating the enslaved populace of the Bay of Dragons, Daenerys leaves Daario and the Second Sons behind to keep the peace in the cities until the people choose their own rulers.[2]

The banners of the Second Sons display a broken sword.



The Second Sons have a long, though checkered history. They are one of the oldest sellsword companies, having been active since soon after the Doom of Valyria four hundred years ago, when they took part in the Battle of Qohor. They were one of two sellsword companies hired to bolster Qohor's defense in the face of a massive Dothraki horde. The Qohorik forces were slaughtered, however, and both sellsword companies broke their contracts and fled rather than face certain death. The Dothraki were miraculously defeated the next day by a force of 3,000 Unsullied - but this did not help the Second Sons' reputation.

Over the centuries they have had more success than at the Battle of Qohor, finding enough steady employment and profits in the frequent wars of the Free Cities that they have been able to remain operating for four hundred years. Like many mercenary companies, they have fought in the Disputed Lands, territory between Lys and Myr which both cities constantly feud over.

In recent years, however, the Second Sons developed a bad reputation under their captain Mero, a Braavosi known as the Titan's Bastard. As a result none of the Free Cities would hire them anymore, and they fell on such hard times that just prior to the War of the Five Kings they had to travel all the way to Slaver's Bay in search of cities willing to employ their services. By this time the Second Sons consist of about 2,000 armored cavalry.

Game of Thrones: Season 3[]

After Daenerys frees the Unsullied with her dragons, she starts carving a path across Slaver's Bay, determined to liberate all of the slaves of the region's cities. As she marches on the next city, Yunkai, she parleys with its envoy Razdal mo Eraz. Razdal offers Daenerys gold and ships if she will simply leave Yunkai alone, but she refuses, determined to free the city's tens of thousands of slaves. Razdal warns that Yunkai is not Astapor - though her own advisors say that while Astapor trained Unsullied warrior-eunuchs, Yunkai is mostly known for training bed-slaves. Razdal nonetheless warns her that Yunkai has "powerful friends" who will stop her army if it attempts to take the city.[3]

Daenerys, Ser Jorah Mormont, and Ser Barristan Selmy sneak closer to Yunkai to investigate Yunkai's new "friends", and discover that they have hired the Second Sons. Barristan feels that their 8,000 Unsullied can defeat them, but that the 2,000 armored cavalry of the mercenaries might be enough to cause them significant trouble. Rather than accept the losses they might cause, Daenerys requests a parley with the captains of the Second Sons, offering to simply pay them more if they switch to her side. Captains Mero and Prendahl na Ghezn arrive at her tent, along with their lieutenant Daario Naharis. She offers to reward them with their choice of lands and castles in the Seven Kingdoms when she eventually retakes them, but Mero and Prendahl are unconcerned about potential future reward. Moreover, they say they can still beat her Unsullied, for although they are outnumbered they have faced worse odds and won - to which Jorah notes that they have faced worse odds and run.

Daario is more diplomatic, and points out that while the Unsullied are impressive infantry, Daenerys has no cavalry forces or siege engines. Daenerys points out that she didn't even have an army a few weeks ago, and a year ago she didn't even have dragons, yet now she has both. Daario is smitten by the young queen's beauty and spirit, but Mero proceeds to be very crass, spewing out a stream of sexual profanity at her. He is so insulting that Grey Worm offers to cut out his tongue, but Daenerys says not to harm a guest while under parley. After the captains decline her offer and leave, however, Daenerys orders Barristan that when they face them in battle he should make sure to kill Mero first, which he says he gladly will.

Meeting in their camp later, the three officers discuss their plan of action. Mero fondles a Yunkai'i whore while fuming about Daenerys's obstinance. They privately agree that they actually don't have the strength to defeat 8,000 Unsullied on the battlefield, so they come up with a new plan: one of them will quietly sneak into Daenerys's camp during the night and assassinate her, after which her army will disperse. Mero decides that they should draw lots by picking different coins, and Daario is selected for the task.

That night, Daario infiltrates Daenerys's camp wearing the stolen armor of an Unsullied, and enters her tent while she is taking a bath. He holds a blade to the throat of her servant Missandei, but then explains that he is not there to kill her. He explains that he is so smitten with her beauty that he disagreed with the other officers about killing her: he then unloads the contents of his sack on the floor, revealing the severed heads of Mero and Prendahl. Having thus promoted himself to be the new captain of the Second Sons, Daario pledges them to her service.[4]

Daario, Jorah, and Grey Worm successfully sneak into Yunkai and free enough of the slaves to start a general uprising, after which the city quickly falls to Daenerys's combined dragon/Dothraki/Unsullied/Second Sons army.[5]

Game of Thrones: Season 4[]

During Daenerys's conquest of Meereen, Daario commands the Second Sons to take the Meereenese navy, which consists of 93 ships. When Daario tells the Queen and her council, the possibility is raised of using the fleet to invade Westeros. However, she ultimately refuses and decides to remain in Meereen to rule over Slaver's Bay and enforce her abolition of slavery.[6]

While traveling to the Eyrie, the Hound tells Arya that he might leave Westeros and fight as a sellsword in the Free Cities, possibly with the Second Sons.[7]

Upon hearing that the Wise Masters of Yunkai have gotten back into power and re-enslaved the freedmen, Daenerys instructs Daario to send his Second Sons to retake the Yellow City and kill every Master. However, Jorah convinces Daenerys to give the Masters an ultimatum instead: to accept her abolition of slavery or die. In order to act as her ambassador to Yunkai, he decides to send Hizdahr zo Loraq along with Daario and the Second Sons.[8]

Game of Thrones: Season 5[]

After the success of Hizdahr and Daario's diplomatic mission to Yunkai, the Second Sons return to Meereen to find the city being patrolled by Unsullied as a result of the actions of a resistance movement known as the Sons of the Harpy.[9]

In order to end the threat of the Sons of the Harpy, who are attacking Unsullied warriors in Meereen in resistance of Daenerys's rule of the city, Daario uses his less-conspicuous Second Sons to find them by mingling with the population. Using such tactics, the Second Sons are able to track a member of the Sons of the Harpy who is captured by Daario and Grey Worm.[10]

Later, several Second Sons are flirting with a Meereenese prostitute, who is secretly in league with the Sons of the Harpy. The Harpies then ambush the mercenaries and lure a patrol of Unsullied into a trap in the catacombs.[11]

Game of Thrones: Season 6[]

With the slave masters defeated and slavery abolished across Slaver's Bay, the region is renamed the Bay of Dragons in honor of Daenerys Targaryen and her three dragons.[12] Having formed several new alliances in Westeros, the Targaryen forces begin to set sail towards the Seven Kingdoms. However, on the advice of Tyrion Lannister, Daenerys decides to leave Daario Naharis and the Second Sons behind, charging them with keeping the peace in Meereen and the rest of the Bay of Dragons until the people choose their own rulers.[2]

Military strength[]

When Daenerys Targaryen encounters them at Yunkai, the Second Sons consist of almost 2,000 armored cavalry.

The weaponry of the Second Sons varies considerably, as various types of swords, daggers, and spears have been shown. They have no set uniform, as individual members arm themselves as they see fit from the company's stockpile of weapons and armor. Some have shoulder pauldrons, and many wear chainmail of some kind (frequently with minor damage and hasty repairs from previous engagements).

Daario Naharis, the current commander, is armed with two blades: a Dothraki arakh and a Myrish stiletto, both of which have custom gold handles shaped like naked women.

Some of the Second Sons are also adept at ambushes, and as infiltrators and assassins. Daario successfully entered Daenerys's tent despite it being heavily guarded by Unsullied, although he did not actually intend to kill her. Later, he led Jorah and Grey Worm in infiltrating the city of Yunkai, allowing Daenerys to capture it with virtually no casualties.

In the books[]

In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, the Second Sons are one of a number of mercenary companies operating in Essos. They are so-called because it is common for the second sons of lords and merchants - who would otherwise inherit nothing - to seek service in their ranks for glory and gold. Aegor Rivers, known as Bittersteel, served in the Second Sons for a year before leaving to found the Golden Company. Prince Aerion Targaryen also joined the Second Sons during his time in Essos, as did Rodrik Stark, "the Wandering Wolf".

Prior to the novels, the Second Sons had recently fallen into disrepute due to the rise of a particularly vicious commander, a Braavosi called Mero. Mero has led the company in pursuing contracts no-one else would touch, and the company has become almost as ill-omened as the infamous Brave Companions as a result. Mero's reputation grew so bad that none of the Free Cities would hire the Second Sons anymore, which is why at the time the books commence the Second Sons are in the employ of the city of Yunkai in Slaver's Bay.

The TV series combines the Second Sons with the Stormcrows, a company led by Prendahl na Ghezn, Sallor the Bald, and Daario Naharis. In the books, the Second Sons and Stormcrows consist of about 500 men each, for a total of one thousand mercenaries. The TV series not only combined the two mercenary companies, but doubled the total number of mercenaries from one thousand to two thousand.

During the battle near Yunkai, Mero comes to parley with Daenerys. He acts very rudely and refuses to switch sides. Daenerys cunningly gives him a wagon of wine, to make him and his men too drunk to fight. As the Second Sons are attacked by the Stormcrows and the Unsullied, they surrender, except Mero who escapes, and later tries to kill Daenerys, but is foiled by Ser Barristan Selmy (and killed by a mob of freedmen). The Second Sons choose Brown Ben Plumm as their new commander and join Daenerys's army. During the Siege of Meereen, Ben Plumm is the one who suggests to invade the city via the sewers.

While Daenerys rules Meereen, Ben Plumm urges her to use her dragons against their enemies, but she declines (secretly, because she can't control them). Ben Plumm therefore switches sides to the Yunkai'i, disheartening Daenerys. She takes it as a personal betrayal, not experienced enough to realize that sellsword companies switch sides all the time depending on who they think is going to win.

At Daenerys's wedding, she confronts Ben Plumm about his betrayal. He explains "My boys didn't care to die, that's all, and when I told them that you couldn't unleash them dragons against the Yunkishmen, well...". Daenerys resents Ben, but by this point realizes she can't really blame him too much. She wonders is this is the "betrayal for gold" which she was warned of at the House of the Undying.

Near the end of A Dance with Dragons, Tyrion, Jorah Mormont and their dwarf companion Penny escape from Yezzan and join the Second Sons. Tyrion intends to make them switch sides again. Ben Plumm orders Tyrion to sign huge pile of promissory notes. Tyrion obeys, pretending to do it reluctantly, but he is amused: if he somehow returns to Westeros alive and claims his birthright, he will have enough gold to pay those notes; if he dies - all those notes will not be worth more than toilet papers. Ben Plumm assigns Tyrion to serve as an accountant. Kasporio doubts that Tyrion will be any use for them, for he is clearly not a fighter; Tyrion tells him jokingly that he once had charge of all the drains in Casterly Rock, and cleaned them very well.

During the second siege of Meereen, the Seconds Sons have second thoughts about serving the Yunkai'i, and disobey the command to defend the Yunkish ships from the ironborn. Once Brown Ben hears that the Windblown have switched sides, he proclaims that the Second Sons have been Queen’s Men all along, and joining the Yunkai'i was merely a clever ploy. Tyrion is not fooled by this, but is happy with the development.

Known members[]

  • {Mero}, known as the "Titan's Bastard", the former commander. Killed by Ser Barristan Selmy
  • Ben Plumm, known as "Brown Ben", captain and the current commander
  • Kasporio, known as "Kasporio the Cunning", second-in-command
  • Tybero Istarion, known as "Inkpots", paymaster
  • Hammer, drunken blacksmith and armorer
  • Nail, apprentice to Hammer
  • Snatch, serjeant
  • Uhlan, serjeant
  • Kem, young sellsword
  • Bokkoko, axeman
  • Ser Garibald
  • Ser Jorah Mormont
  • Tyrion Lannister, assistant to Inkpots
  • Penny, a dwarf



External links[]