Blackfyre Rebellion in the Vale
There was surprising support for the Blackfyres in the areas of the Vale, likely due to Daemon Blackfyre spending parts of several years as a guest of various houses and fostering his son, Athan, in the region for a few years. The most ardent supporters were house Stockton on the coast of the Bay of Shards, and House Baldwyn, in the western Argent River Valley.
House Baldwyn attracts house Gorrant and house Lavell as well as many other hedge knights and discontented nobles. Minor skirmishing occurs as forces clash locally while attempting to assemble with their various allies. Once the majority of rebel forces are gathered, they begin marching along the River Road towards Balecross, hoping to link up with rebel lords from the Grey Watches.
The Slaughter of the Reeds: Loyalist forces seeking to meet up with Pallen Darrow’s forces are caught by a surprise attack while still in their camp. Their forces are mauled and routed. House Hakon, Ordris, and the loyalist faction of house Aden are extinguished. The brutal, no-quarter fighting would set the tone for future engagements in the war.
Battle of the Simeon’s Ford. Lord Pallen Darrow wins an unlikely victory over House Baldwyn ending the rebellion in the Argent River Valley. Ser Theron Graystone kills Lord Percin Baldwyn and his son, Ser Padric in single combat. Percin’s other son is killed in the retreat, extinguishing house Baldwyn. Ser Artis Aden is also killed, leaving house Aden with a sole survivor, Joras, who is recalled from fosterage to take over the house. Other rebel houses, House Gorrant and House Lavell have their lands confiscated, their leaders executed, and most of their surviving retainers sent to the wall, exile, or the sept. A few scions of otherwise loyal houses who fought for the rebellion are killed in the fighting, executed or sent to the wall.
There continued to be sporadic fighting throughout the Vale, especially to the East of the Argent Valley in the Grey Watches region that borders the Bay of Shards. As forces from the Argent arrived in this area, the rebellious lords had largely been defeated, and what remained was largely mop up duty.
Houses destroyed in the Argent Valley were Baldwyn, Gorrant, and Lavell, who sided with the Blackfyres. Rumors persisted at the time that children of these house escaped their destruction. While there is little credence to many of these rumors, House Gorrant’s heir, Howden, a boy of 12, is most often cited as one who escaped across the narrow sea, and ancestors of his fought in the War of Ninepenny kings. While there is no evidence of this, Howden Gorrant was notably absent from the executioner or casualty lists, and was not one of the members of traitorous houses sent to the wall. Likely killed late in the war in the fire that destroyed Castle Stone Oak, house Gorrant’s ancestral home, the lack of proof of his death fueled rumors of the scion of the traitor house biding his time and waiting for revenge.