Take a moment. Exhale. Wipe away any remaining tears. It’s not goodbye, just see you later.
The second season of “Game of Thrones” came to a stunning end Sunday with “Valar Morghulis,” a fitting last title to a season that tortured me with difficult words to spell. But I can’t stay mad at you, “Thrones!”
The finale bookmarked each of our characters's stories in a completely satisfying way as we prepare to leave them for the next several months. So without further adieu, let’s see where things now stand with the good people of Westeros (and beyond).
— After the Battle of Blackwater, Sansa, regrettably, turned down the Hound’s offer to go to Winterfell and instead stayed with Joffrey in King’s Landing, where the Stark lady was made to watch the tiny, terrible King reward Lord Tywin for saving everyone from a terrible death with an assist from (still not slow) Loras Tyrell.
And what did the former lover of Renly Baratheon want in exchange for his bravery? Why, for Joffrey to marry his sister Margaery, of course!
Joffrey attempted to be (I can’t believe I’m about to type this) honorable and said that his vow to Sansa was unbreakable. But after being persuaded by once-again-bearded Maester Pycell and the presumably now sober Cersei, Joffrey was like, “OK, fine! I’ll marry the cutie who’s cool with incest instead of the traitor’s daughter!”
After letting out a relieved giggle, Sansa was confronted by Lord Baelish, the new Lord of Harrenhal, with what he sees as the truth: that Joffrey will keep her around as a mistress and be even worse to her. (As if that were possible.) But instead, Little Finger proposed to care for the daughter of his unrequited love in a completely non-creepy way that didn’t make my skin crawl.
— Tyrion was completely wounded, inside and out. After Ser Mandon Moore attempted to kill him during Blackwater, at Cersei’s request, Tyrion was left with a scar across his face (making him even more like Omar from “The Wire”) and without his title. But he still has Shae, who lovingly mocked him when she said, “I’m a poor little rich man and nobody loves me so I make jokes all the time and pay them to laugh.” Somebody loves him now. And she’s sticking around — for free.
— Well, somehow Theon Greyjoy lived to see another day. After being surrounded by Robb’s men and taunted with a horn that wouldn’t quit, Maester Luwin suggested to the new Lord of Winterfell that he escape and join the Night’s Watch.
“You’re not the man you’re pretending to be. Not yet,” Luwin told Theon. With crazy in his eyes, Theon replied, “I’ve gone too far to pretend to be anything else.”
Yes, Theon resigned himself to death and gave a rousing speech to the Iron Island men, who seemed inspired. He was then whacked over the head and rendered unconscious.
Maester Luwin also was, tragically, stabbed, which broke me as badly as Ned’s death.(Thanks, neighbors, for not calling 911 when I screamed very loudly.) Before he asked Osha to finish him off, Luwin told Bran and Rickon to go find Jon in the North. So off they went, as Winterfell burned in the background.
I realize this is an obvious question, but how in the name of the gods, old and new, did the Iron Islanders take Winterfell? Was Yara lurking somewhere, waiting to attack Robb’s men? Did Robb’s men turn on him? Did someone have an extra case of wildfire or a spare dragon?
— Brienne remained honorable and fierce. That is all.
— Robb married Lady Talisa against his mother’s wishes, so now things are presumably gonna get rough with Walder Frey, the man who was supposed to be his father-in-law. His bed is made.
— Stannis Baratheon was upset — upset that he lost the Battle of Blackwater, upset that he put his faith in the fire god, upset that he murdered his brother.
“We murdered your brother,” Melisandre reminded Stannis after he attempted to choke the life out of her. For better or for worse, this is the pony Stannis has picked. It’s going to be a fiery ride.
— Arya was on the road with Gendry and the fat kid when she ran into Jaqen. While she turned down his offer to go to Bravos, the homeland of her dance instructor Syrio, Arya did accept a coin from Jaqen that will make him appear with the words Valar Morghulis. Oh, AND JAQEN CHANGED HIS FACE COMPLETELY. Who is this man of many faces and why is he so good to Arya? I can’t wait to find out.
— Jon Snow was forced by his mentor Qhorin to ... kill his mentor Qhorin. Yes, the good man of the Night’s Watch sacrificed himself to make Jon Snow seem like a good prospect to Mance Rayder. And it’s a good thing, too, because the King Beyond The Wall has quite an army.
— “I’M SO SCARED. PLEASE DON’T DO THIS,” is what I thought when Daenerys walked into the House of the Undying. But what did I have to worry about? After being taunted by a heartbreaking vision of Khal Drogo and her son, Dany totally schooled the bald warlock and used her dragon power to burn him to a creepy crisp.
She then exacted her revenge on Xaro and Doreah, the presumed dead, actually traitorous handmaiden, by locking them in the King of Qarth’s empty vault. That is about the coldest way to kill people. Good work, Khalesi.
— And finally we have our newest characters to deal with... the white walkers! They cometh! And there’s a lot of them! See you next season!
More “Game of Thrones”: