Game of Thrones is seriously spoiling us this season. Sunday's episode, "Stormborn," gave us two -- yes, two! -- reunions that both warmed and broke our hearts.
After the grueling scene of Sam (John Bradley) basically skinning poor Jorah (Iain Glen) alive, we felt emotionally destroyed and physically ill. Not only was it possibly the grossest thing the series has ever shown (which is saying a lot), but it almost ruined pot pies for us forever! Fortunately, Game of Thrones had the perfect remedy for this gag-fest: a surprise appearance from everyone's favorite baker, Hot Pie (Ben Hawkey)!
The delightfully sweet, brown butter savant reunited with his long-ago traveling companion Arya (Maisie Williams) in the same inn where he gave her the iconic direwolf bread. And though he didn't share any animal-shaped treats with her this time, Hot Pie did drop some crucial knowledge -- that her brother Jon (Kit Harington) was now King in the North -- and helped remind Arya that there's more to life than killing her enemies. There's also family and friends to think about.
After Hot Pie inspired Arya to pause murdering for a minute, she set off on her new path north for Winterfell. And that's when we were hit with Reunion No. 2.
Thanks to the trailer for "Stormborn," we knew this week Arya would be running into her old direwolf Nymeria, who hasn't been seen since Arya Harry and the Hendersons-ed her in Season 1. But their reunion wasn't exactly the squee-fest we anticipated.
At first, Arya had no idea what was going on and was terrified that she was quite possibly about to be devoured by a pack of vicious wolves.
But then her fear turned to joy when she realized who was leading this pack.
The reunited duo stared at each other for a good long while until Arya decided to invite Nymeria to join her on the journey home. However, her request fell on deaf ears, with Nymeria simply turning around and leaving Arya alone without any reunion pets, licks or nuzzles.
Initially, this moment was truly heartbreaking for both us and Arya. But then it dawned on the young Stark girl: "That's not her."
Nymeria has been living in the wild for so long, she simply can't return to a domesticated lifestyle. She's grown (quite literally) and moved on. It's not that Nymeria necessarily no longer cares for Arya or doesn't cherish those memories, but she's not the same direwolf she was when she lived at Winterfell -- just like Arya is not the same girl.
Then again, Arya never was comfortable living the life of a noble lady.
In Game of Thrones' first season, Arya told her father that the life he imagined for her at Winterfell was not the life for her. It's not that Arya believed this was a bad life, it just wasn't her life.
Since then, Arya has only grown farther away from the young lady Ned (Sean Bean) intended her to be, so it'll be exciting to see her return home after all these years. Will she be able to find solace within the walls of Wintefell still or, like Nymeria, will she realize that that life isn't hers anymore and leave it behind for good?
If Arya does decide to leave her past life behind her for good, we do hope she'll at least do her family a favor and kill Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) before she disappears again.
Game of Thrones airs Sundays at 9/8c on HBO.