“A girl is Arya Stark of Winterfell, and I’m going home.”
With two episodes of Game of Thrones Season 6 to go, we still haven’t seen anything of the dinner hosted by Ser Walder Frey, as teased in one of the pre-season trailers. In that scene, the Lord of the Crossing makes a smug toast to an audience that seems to be made up of Frey and Lannister soldiers.
Of course, the last lavish party thrown by the only man in Westeros more evil than Ramsay Bolton went down in history as one of television’s most deliciously bloody massacres — relive the Red Wedding below, if you can stand to see a knife being plunged into Robb Stark’s unborn baby once again.
At the close of “No One,” Arya drew a line under her long and tortured time on Braavos by announcing to Jaqen her intention to go home. But what if she takes the long route back North?
Here’s my theory: That dinner party scene teased in the trailer will play out in the final episode of the season, . Arya will not be present — at least, she won’t appear to be.
In the books, Lady Stoneheart and the Brotherhood Without Banners descend on The Twins, the seat of Walder Frey, and proceed to slaughter every single person present, including Frey and a large number of innocents. Lady Stoneheart is so consumed by rage and vengeance that the loss of innocent life does not faze her. Frey is dead and, in her mind, the debt is settled.
The show essentially confirmed last week , and I foresee events playing out quite differently in the finale. Arya will benefit from her faceless man apprenticeship by riding on The Twins and entering the party in disguise, wearing the face of a Frey or a Lannister soldier. (Although it’s never been clearly specified that a Faceless Man can take any face at will, we’ve seen Jaqen do exactly that already.)
Inside the party, Arya will drink. She will feast. She will laugh as the soldiers reminisce about the time they broke the guest right to slaughter Robb, Catelyn, Talisa and the baby. She will watch as the poison she slipped into their drinks begins to take hold. And when every soldier has slumped to the ground, she will approach Ser Walder Frey at the high table, reveal herself, and insert Needle squarely into his heart.
And perhaps, somewhere amidst this bloodshed and chaos, the Brotherhood Without Banners will also ride on The Twins, just in time to set up that reunion between Arya and The Hound we’ve all been waiting for since basically the beginning of time. The party will then ride for Winterfell, , but having retaken the North from Ramsay Bolton (freshly murdered by Sansa herself).
The massacre of the Lannister soldiers (all of whom are guilty by association, having played their role in the Red Wedding) will reignite the war between the rejuvenated Starks and whichever Lannisters remain (my money’s on Jaime) after the murders of Tommen, Margaery and the High Sparrow at King’s Landing. Having both the Boltons and the Freys being decimated in the space of two episodes would be beautiful symmetry, and would finally shut the lid on House Stark’s vengeance arc.
Alright, so maybe my imagination is running away with me here, but what’s a Friday afternoon without an elaborate Game of Thrones theory to mull over?
Feast your eyes on the trailer for Sunday’s episode, “Battle of the Bastards,” prep yourself for the best and bloodiest hour of Game of Thrones ever, and tell me…
You are the Princess Shireen of the House Baratheon, and you are my daughter.