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Including whether Cersei is really pregnant
It's here: the end of Game of Thrones' seventh season is upon us. How did we get here? Where did the time go? No one knows, no one cares -- least of all Game of Thrones itself. The show's timeline this season has been, well, wonky would be putting it kindly. Time and distance had no meaning as people traveled at improbable speeds, while other characters dropped out of the story completely to make room for all those incestuous insinuations. So as we head into Sunday's finale, titled "The Dragon and the Wolf", we have a few questions about ongoing plot threads that we need the show to tie up before the credits roll. Let's get to it!
1. What is happening with the Greyjoys?
The last we saw of Theon (Alfie Allen) he'd arrived at Dragonstone to ask Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) for help in rescuing Yara (Gemma Whelan) from the hands of their torturous uncle, the dread pirate Euron (Pilou Asbæk). Unfortunately, by the time he'd come ashore, Dany and the Dothraki were well on their way to turning the Lannister army into barbecued flesh. What happened to Theon after that? Did he and the men with him just say, "Welp, see ya later?" or are they still on Dragonstone? Have they been plotting a secret rescue mission this entire time, one that will come up in the finale -- and we'll all be expected to just accept it as evidence of how they spent their time since Jon (Kit Harington) nearly smashed Theon's face into a jelly?
Meanwhile, what horrible things has Euron been doing to Yara during her captivity? We haven't seen her since he returned to King's Landing and received a hero's welcome. We're terrified to think about the horrors Yara has been subjected to by Euron -- and Cersei (Lena Headey) by extension -- but the finale needs to address the Greyjoy siblings and their fates.
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2. Have we seen the last of Ellaria Sand?
It was implied that Cersei was going to keep Ellaria (Indira Varma) alive and in chains in that cell with her dead daughter's remains for quite some time. Now, we wouldn't be surprised if that final scene of Ellaria and Tyene Sand (Rosabell Laurenti Sellers), where they're straining to reach one another but just out of reach, is the last we'll see of either woman (or their corpses), but it also feels a little odd. At the very least, confirmation of Ellaria's death via Daenerys -- they were allies, after all -- would suffice, though we wouldn't be surprised if Dany demands Ellaria's freedom at some point in the future and we discover she's still alive.
3. Is Cersei really pregnant?
The way we see it, there are only two possible roads for Game of Thrones to take regarding Cersei's pregnancy: either she's pregnant and miscarries in the finale, or it's revealed she lied to Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) about the pregnancy to keep him by her side. In George R.R. Martin's novels, it was prophesied by the witch Maggy that Cersei would bear only three children -- and that they would all die before her. She has already borne three children and watched them die, therefore even if Cersei really is pregnant, she likely won't carry the child to term.
As for the argument that she has fabricated the pregnancy, the second half of Maggy's prophecy -- which was left out of the HBO series -- states: "And when your tears have drowned you, the valonqar shall wrap his hands about your pale white throat and choke the life from you." Valonqar translates to "little brother" in High Valyrian; Cersei has always assumed that Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) is the little brother the prophecy is referring to, which explains her horrid treatment of him. But Jaime was also born after Cersei, which makes him her little brother, too. If Jaime, whose loyalty to Cersei seemed to be slipping at times this season, discovers she's been manipulating him via a fake pregnancy, it could very well be the thing that tips him over the edge. Fans have long been speculating that Jaime will ultimately be Cersei's downfall -- and just as many foreboding hints that she might be his -- and this plays right into that.
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4. Will Jon discover the truth about his parentage?
How much longer can Game of Thrones sit on this particular secret? Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) learned the identity of Jon's mother at the end of Season 6. We are now approaching the Season 7 finale and we're still no closer to Jon knowing the truth about his parentage than we were a season ago. And while no one within the narrative currently knows Jon's father's identity (thanks a lot, Sam!), the title of the finale is "The Dragon and the Wolf." This is likely a reference to Daenerys and Jon's budding relationship, but it could also refer to another relationship that blossomed between a Targaryen and a Stark, aka the marriage between Jon's parents, Rhaeger Targaryen and Lyanna Stark. Basically, now is the perfect time for Jon to discover the truth.
5. Will we ever see the direwolves again?
Game of Thrones has never approached the connection between the Starks and their direwolves the way the novels have -- in the show only Bran could warg into his direwolf, even though in the novels both Jon and Arya (Maisie Williams) appeared to have some form of warging ability. The reason for the change is in large part due to the cost of the special effects required to bring the direwolves to life.
You'll notice that when the wolves were younger and smaller, they were featured much more frequently, but now that they've grown and require CGI, a direwolf sighting is incredibly rare. To put it bluntly, the series would rather spend money on Daenerys' dragons than a direwolf, which is understandable even if it hurts our hearts. This is why, prior to the start of Season 7, fans were eagerly anticipating Arya's reunion with Nymeria, the direwolf she drove away in Season 1 to spare its life. She is one of just two surviving direwolves, the other being Jon's faithful Ghost. Unfortunately, the reunion wasn't the happy affair many expected.
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The scene featured Arya, on her way home to Winterfell, encountering Nymeria -- now very large and leading her own pack -- in the woods. She asked the wolf to accompany her home, but Nymeria was like, "Sorry, but nah," to which Arya was like "Fair." The scene was meant to represent how Arya, like Nymeria, had changed since they were last together, but if that's all we will see of the direwolves this season (or next!) we'd much rather have had the series check in with Ghost, who's been actively engaged in the narrative but not seen since Season 6.
6. Is Littlefinger going to die or what?
Littlefinger's (Aidan Gillen) death has been looming, not unlike the man himself, all season long. Now that Sansa (Sophie Turner) is wise to his manipulations -- and arguably doesn't need his help anymore -- there's no reason to keep him around. Plus, the series hasn't featured a major death -- with the exception of fan favorite Olenna Tyrell (Diana Rigg) -- since the Season 6 finale. We're putting our money on Sansa gutting him like a fish, probably with the dagger Arya recently placed in her hand.
To add more fuel to the fire, if everyone is going to unite to defeat the Night King's army -- and that is still an if -- then it should stand to reason that the storyline featuring the war for the Iron Throne at least be put on pause, if not wrapped up altogether. What better way to bookend this long, bloody narrative than by killing Littlefinger, the man responsible for kicking it off in the first place?
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7. Will the White Walkers finally make it into Westeros?
The White Walkers and their army of frozen zombies have been marching south toward the Wall for what feels like forever. Will the finale be the episode in which the precious Wall comes down? If Bran broke the magic of the Wall when he allowed the Night King to touch him last season, then it seems pretty plausible, no?
Game of Thrones' Season 7 finale airs Sunday, Aug. 27 at 9/8c on HBO.