[Warning: Spoilers for the latest episode of Vikings below. Read at your own risk!]
Since Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick) and Ragnar (Travis Fimmel) split, the Queen of Kattegatt has had her share of romantic troubles. There was her abusive second husband Sigvard (Morten Sasse Suurballe), whom she was forced to kill; her manipulative fiancé Kalf (Ben Robson), whom she was forced to kill on her wedding day, and then Astrid (Josefin Asplund), her trusted advisor who married one of her greatest enemies and whom she may just be forced to kill if they come face-to-face in Wednesday's season finale.
So overall, not a great track record for Lagertha over the years, but that doesn't mean she should stop searching for love, by any means. However, it does mean that we're fairly skeptical her latest relationship — an unexpected and impulsive coupling with the Christian warrior bishop Heahmund (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) that began in this week's episode — is going to end with a happily ever after, something Vikings creator Michael Hirst all but confirmed to us.
"We know that [Heahmund's] going to suffer for this, not least he's going to punish himself," Hirst tells TV Guide. "But that's a storyline that's going to have quite extraordinary payoff."
"It's really part of his character," Hirst continues, "that he is impulsive and he throws himself into extreme situations all the time, extreme situations that actually threaten his own wellbeing. But he doesn't care. He's always hovering between life and death, Heahmund, which makes him a great character, of course."
Despite the fact that Lagertha isn't a Christian and that as a bishop he's taken a vow of celibacy, Heahmund can't seem to help himself when it comes to devoting himself fully to this new relationship — and neither can Lagertha.
"For Lagertha to get into another relationship or have any kind of connection or bond with anybody, there has to be, at this stage of her life, past a physical attraction; it has to be a mental attraction or a spiritual connection, and I feel that is evident in her relationship with Heahmund," Katheryn Winnick explains. "They both need each other at this point in their lives. They help each other, and that connection will be explored more onscreen."
If Lagertha and Heahmund both survive the upcoming battle in the midseason finale, we'll keep our fingers crossed that these two crazy kids can make it work, but something tells us things will only get more complicated for the mismatched couple from here on out.
Vikings' midseason finale airs Wednesday at 9/8c on History.