House of the Dragon fans 'in tears' over heartbreaking character death in season 2, episode 4

*Warning - The following article contains spoilers from House of the Dragon season 2, episode 4.*

House of the Dragon viewers were shocked by the latest instalment, which saw a huge clash between House Black and House Green.

The battle at Rook's Rest took a violent turn when three royals unexpectedly arrived on their dragons, causing a huge fight to take place in the air.

Both camps tried to gain the upper hand with surprise attacks, with Rhaenyra Targaryen (Emma D'Arcy) deciding to send her aunt Rhaenys Targaryen (Eve Best) to defend their house.

However, fans soon learned that Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel) and Aemond Targaryen (Ewan Mitchell) had the same plans, with the latter hiding in the trees with his massive dragon, Vhagar.

House of the Dragon
House of the Dragon season 2, episode 4 left fans in tears -Credit:HBO/SKY

READ MORE: House of the Dragon fans think they know what happened to Laenor Velaryon thanks to huge clue

READ MORE: House of the Dragon fans 'work out' heartbreaking hidden meaning behind Daemon's words

Yet no one anticipated that Aegon Targaryen (Tom Glynn-Carney), feeling the need to prove himself following a frosty conversation with his mother Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke), would also join the fray.

As the battle begins, armies of men look up in terror as dragons rain fire down upon them. In a massive twist, Rhaenys and Aegon's dragons get entangled during the fight and - instead of helping his brother - Aemond unleashes fire on the pair, causing Aegon and his dragon to plummet to the ground.

While Rhaenys manages to escape, she bravely decides to return and fight Aemond to the death, ultimately leading to her downfall.

At the dramatic close of the episode, it's clear that Rhaenys and her dragon Meleys have met their end, leaving Ser Criston to stumble upon a shocking scene in the woods with Aegon and his dragon.

The episode wraps up with a nail-biting cliffhanger, leaving us all guessing if the king made it out alive after his brother's actions led to a horrific plunge.

Fans were left reeling over the fate of Aegon, but even more so for Rhaenys, whose tragic demise has sparked an outpouring of grief among viewers. Reddit became a hub for fans of the Game of Thrones prequel to share their heartache over the latest plot twist.

One devastated viewer posted: "I'm never gonna emotionally recover from this." While another lamented: "Being a book reader and knowing what was gonna happen and yet I still cried." (sic)

Echoing the sentiment, a fellow fan confessed: "I cried reading the book. I knew it was coming, but d*** it still hurt! The queen who should have been. One of the best characters in the entire series!" (sic)

Another fan revealed their emotional reaction, writing: "I literally teared up. When Rhaenys told Meleys to attack Vhagar. I couldn't tell what was in Rhaenys' expression. She looked sad and like she lost hope, even Meleys expressed some sort of sad emotion after her leg was hurt before they turned around. I almost ugly cried when Meleys was falling to the ground too." (sic)

While one other fan shared their wishful thinking alongside a sorrowful emoji, penning: "I was just hoping she would land on Christian Cole. RIP the queen that never was." (sic)

Another added: "My heart feels shattered. I hate how this Show can make me feel. Meleys didn't deserve that death either. Poor dragon.

"Rhaenys of course obv didn't deserve to go out that way. It's an hour later and I'm still very much upset and want to cry some more. This episode has SERIOUSLY outdone itself. I hate you (love you) HOD." (sic)

Another wrote: "Heartbroken at this loss but so amazed at this astounding actress and the performance. Well done, ma'am. Brava indeed." (sic)

Fans also took to social media to praise Eve Best for her portrayal, with one saying: "#1 in our hearts. Take a bow Eve Best." (sic)

Echoing the sentiment, another fan expressed: "In my opinion Eve Best is sure to be remembered as one of the best performances of the show. I miss you, Queen!" (sic)

Further admiration came from a viewer who said: "Shout out to Eve Best who was absolutely brilliant as Rhaenys Targaryen tonight." (sic)

House of the Dragon season 2 lands in the UK on Mondays at 2am BST (British Summer Time) on Sky Atlantic and NOW, with a repeat airing later on at 9pm.