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"Do you really wish to know?"
Spoilers from the books and/or adaptations to follow!
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The boy's not fit to wear the crown. Hasn't sufficient wit nor valor. I know this, you know this... just, he knows it not.
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- Count Caldwell speaking to Meve about Villem, Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales

Villem[1] was the elder son of the royal pair of Lyria and Rivia, Meve and Reginald. The queen was known to love them both but since they didn't really inherit her wit, having personalities even more reckless than their father, she doubted either would ever want or be able to rule.

Biography Edit

Upbringing Edit

Villem was born to Queen Meve and her husband in 1251[1] when they were both quite young, thus she referred to them as "fruits of delightful abandon" when speaking to Kings Vizimir II, Foltest, Henselt, and Demavend III at their meeting in Hagge. Unfortunately, both sons inherited most traits from the father who was infamously dim-witted. Thus they were neither predisposed nor inclined to make proper kings, all the more since they hardly ever cared about it and often roamed the world making all sorts of trouble.[3]

Second War with Nilfgaard Edit

The following is considered game canon only and may contradict Andrzej Sapkowski's works.
Although his mother Meve always thought that he wasn't cut out for politics, Villem proved her to be wrong, although committing a treason in the action: in 1267 during the Second Northern War, Villem together with Count Caldwell and the Council of Peers overthrew Queen Meve and surrendered the country to Nilfgaardian general Ardal aep Dahy.

While Meve managed to escape the tower she was confined in in order to create a new army to take back her usurped country, Villem was crowned King of Lyria and Rivia by Caldwell and the pledged alliance with Nilfgaard.

In the meantime Meve, leading a new army through the North, defeated Nilfgaardian troops at the Battle for the Bridge on the Jaruga. This was a crucial event during the war: the Empire's turned out to be extremely vulnerable and the whole North took arms against Imperial forces.

Villem, knowing he was losing the war, sent a messenger to his mother and arranged a meeting on Devil's Tower. There, Villem offered Meve his loyalty and what remained of his forces, breaking his alliance with Ardal aep Dahy, provided that Meve accepted his conditions: safety for him and his advisors, his reforms were to remain untouched and last, he was to remain Meve's heir and next in line to the throne.

If Meve acceptes Villem's condition: Although her own son stabbed her in the back and sold her own country to Nilfgaard, Meve finally forgave Villem and accepted his conditions.

After the North won the war, Villem worked hard to regain his mother's trust and respect. He helped her in ruling the country and took on many daring missions, regardless of the risks. The lad who Nilfgaard had wielded as a tool now sowed terror along its borders... and appeared a successor most worthy of Meve.

If Meve doesn't accept Villem's conditions: Those conditions however sounded unacceptable to Meve's ears, and Villem was forced to head back to his castle empty handed, forced to fight in a war that he wanted no more. When Meve reached the castle of Rivia, headquarters of Ardal aep Dahy and Villem, the latter finally sought to right his mistakes, opening the main gate to Meve's troops. General aep Dahy, furious for Villem's betrayal, sent a patrol to the guardhouse to kill him. Although Villem died in his mother's arms, he helped her in taking back again the castle and thus paid his debts.

In the end, although he started the war as a traitor, Villem perished in the fray as a hero, and he was always remembered as such, even by his mother, who finally forgave him for his treason.

If Meve arrests Villem: Those conditions however sounded unacceptable to Meve's ears and so was his treason: the Queen ordered her troops to arrest Villem and toss him in the dungeons.

During his whole reign, Meve never forgave her son. Even after she took her country back from Nilfgaardian invaders, she left Villem to rot in Rivia's dungeon: his strength and spirit waned until he quietly expired. He was buried in secret - no speeches, no honors. His tomb, a plain one, of roughly hewn stone.

End of game canon content.

GalleryEdit

References Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales
  2. Blood and Wine expansion
  3. Blood of Elves
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