Arya Stark celebrated making the most important kill of the century on Game of Thrones by practicing her archery skills while everyone else engaged in more old-fashioned revelry, but Season 8, Episode 4 also set Arya down a path that could lead to her completing that infamous murder list before the series ends. Here’s why Arya could very easily be the one to kill Cersei Lannister in Episodes 5 or 6.
While everyone else in Winterfell celebrated their victory over the Night King, the Hound and Arya Stark were two of the only people who couldn’t seem to enjoy themselves. Not long after the victory party, the Hound left Winterfell and Arya was there to follow him. They both mentioned having “unfinished business” at King’s Landing, and neither had any plans to come back.
What are they really talking about here? It’s almost certainly a joint suicide mission to infiltrate King’s Landing an kill Gregor “the Mountain” Clegane and Cersei Lannister. Their reunion as traveling companions also echoes back to their time together in Seasons 3 and 4, and with Arya’s skills as a Faceless Assassin, we’re starting to think they might actually pull this off.
The Hound’s unfinished business almost definitely refers to his lifelong grudge against his brutal older brother, the Mountain, who’s currently some kind of zombie slave to Cersei Lannister. “Cleganebowl” is a popular fan theory pitting these two brothers together in a battle to the death, which has always been pretty essential. Anyone who wants to kill Cersei will have to first take down the Mountain, and the Hound is probably one of the only warriors big enough to stand a chance.
In the Season 7 finale, Sandor and Gregor Clegane encountered one another at the dragon pit meeting. “Remember me?” the Hound asked his brother. “Yeah, you do. You’re even fuckin’ uglier than I am now. What did they do to you? … Doesn’t matter. That’s not how it ends for you, brother. You know who’s coming for you. You’ve always known.”
While somewhat confusing at the time, this now seems like a direct threat. Why didn’t the Hound say “I am coming for you” instead? Maybe it’s just awkward writing, but the Hound fighting the Mountain feels inevitable, all in the service of Arya Stark killing Cersei Lannister.
When Arya was imprisoned at Harrenhal years ago, she added the Mountain to her kill list because he tortured and killed people she cared about. So it’s possible that Arya wouldn’t mind fighting alongside the Hound for Cleganebowl. Her main target, however, is definitely Cersei Lannister.
The Game of Thrones HBO series will probably forget all about executioner Ilyn Payne’s place on Arya’s list, and maybe even her hatred for the Mountain. Because Arya was the one to kill the Night King, it would be truly incredible if she was also the person to kill Cersei. This could be exactly what happens when you remember that she’s probably the most capable assassin in Westeros right now.
We also haven’t seen her flex her Faceless magic in Season 8 at all, so she’ll probably wear someone else’s face to get close to Cersei. Some fans theorize she’ll wear Jaime Lannister’s face to do the deed, which would technically fulfill the “Valonqar” prophecy.
Because Arya and Hound left for King’s Landing before Jon, Dany, and Jaime, they’re probably already within the city’s gates by the time we see Missandei beheaded at the episode’s end. Cersei also mentioned during Episode 4 that they were leaving the gates open to flood the city with innocent people. This might prevent Daenerys from attacking directly with her one remaining dragon, but it also makes the city more vulnerable to sneaky assassins.
Will Episode 5’s Battle of King’s Landing also include Arya and the Hound sneaking around the castle quietly assassinating everyone? We sure hope so.