As the current seventh season of Game Of Thrones races on, references to the show's first season have been sprinkled throughout it. These include things like Arya's reunion with her direwolf Nymeria in the Riverlands where she originally released her, Jaime Lannister learning exactly why you should never take on the Dothraki in an open field, and the first meeting of Gendry and Jon Snow — the alleged bastards of Robert Baratheon and Ned Stark finally came together, echoing their fathers' reunion in the show's first episode.
And now, another Season 1 throwback — a recently rediscovered letter that Sansa was forced to write, urging her now-deceased brother Robb to bend the knee and proclaim Joffrey to be the rightful King — has fans worried that the Stark sisters will be at each other's throats once more, all thanks to Littlefinger's manipulations. However, events thus far also suggest this may not be the case.
Setting Right What Once Went Wrong
Many echoes of Season 1's events, or those even earlier in Westerosi history, seem to be resulting in much better outcomes, or happening for more positive reasons. Where Viserys Targaryen would have happily burned through cities if it got him his throne, Daenerys hopes to reclaim it without the shedding of any innocent blood. While the first King in the North, Robb Stark, travelled South to engage in a war that tore apart the Seven Kingdoms, current King Jon Snow has travelled there in the hope of brokering peace by forming an alliance that will, hopefully, keep all the kingdoms safe.
Similarly, while King Robert Baratheon summoned Ned Stark to King's Landing to serve him — mostly worried about dangers to himself — Robert's son, Gendry, is proving himself willing to jump right in and share the danger with Ned's alleged son, Jon Snow.
If the current pattern continues, we can hope that a similar situation unfolds for our beloved Stark girls.
Sansa and Arya spent much of Season 1 at odds, especially after the events leading to the wrongful execution of Sansa's direwolf, Lady. All that really bound them together was time spent with their father, Ned — this is echoed in their recent reunion, taking place at their father's crypt.
However, while somewhat awkward, their interaction in this scene is still warmer than any they shared in Season 1. As their father once told Arya, they are —
through being at war — in a dangerous place, and they will need each other to survive.
If they were to truly, fully come together, Sansa with her clever political mind, and Arya with the skills she has learned through her journey, the Stark sisters would be a nearly-unstoppable force. Littlefinger has realised this, obviously leaving Sansa's letter for Arya to find in the hope of driving the sisters apart and keeping his own influence in the North.
Learning From Their Mistakes
As mentioned earlier, a lot of the current season of Game Of Thrones features characters apparently having learned from the mistakes of those who came before. In Season 1, one of Ned Stark's biggest mistakes turns out to be trusting Littlefinger, becoming the first major victim of his manipulations. If this season's current pattern continues as it has, then Arya, hopefully, will not fall for the tricks that brought her father down. She will know that sometimes lying — hiding your true face and allegiance as Sansa did when she wrote her letter — is necessary to survive. That's because Arya has done the same thing, serving as Tywin Lannister's cupbearer, and travelling with The Hound.
Hopefully, Arya will unite with Sansa, the very thing Littlefinger is trying to prevent, and truly turn the tables on him for the first time. They may even take him down completely and avenge their father, finally working together as Ned would have wanted.
Game Of Thrones is heading toward its conclusion, with only nine episodes remaining until the series is fully completed. As a lower-tier villain compared to the others who remain, Littlefinger's time may soon be up.