There's always difficulty watching a major character get killed on a TV show, but it always tugs harder at the heartstrings when the victim is an innocent animal. This situation has often been felt in Game of Thrones as a number of the Stark children lost their protective companions, the direwolves, which they adopted in Season 1. So far, Lady, Grey Wind, Shaggydog and Summer have all met their end, leaving Ghost, who stayed by Jon Snow's side, and Arya's direwolf who we haven't seen since Season 1, Episode 2 — but is that about to change?
#GameofThrones took a monumental step last season in reuniting Jon and Sansa, and now all signs point to a larger Stark reunion including Arya and possibly even Bran. But another long-awaited reunion that has been teased as of late is between Arya and her beloved direwolf, Nymeria.
Fans will remember that back in Season 1, Nymeria attacked Joffrey after he threatened Arya, and as a result the Lannister's ordered the direwolf be killed. Instead, Arya sent Nymeria away to spare her life, causing Lady to be executed in her place, much to Sansa's dismay. At this point it is believed that Nymeria is somewhere in the Riverlands, but a few recent tidbits hint that she might reappear this upcoming seventh season.
During the Con of Thrones event this past weekend, the show's sound designer, Paula Fairfield shared that there will be a "beautiful wolf scene this year." Fairfield's comments mirror the feature story from TIME, which mentioned the presence of wolves on set looking "fluffy and lustrous." Multiple wolves could indicate a pack led by Nymeria, something which has been explored in the books in terms of rumors involving a dangerous group of wolves attacking allies of the Lannisters and Freys (Arya's sworn enemies). In the books, Arya also has recurring dreams envisioning herself in the mind of Nymeria as she leads the pack through the Riverlands, similar to how Bran controlled Summer in the show.
The fact that Arya recently killed Walder Frey near the Riverlands is a good indication she could encounter the pack. The initial Season 7 trailer (above) shows Arya in the frozen wilderness as she journeys back to Winterfell, and something seems to be lurking close by. With the impending war, it would only be fitting that Arya faces multiple obstacles on her adventure. If she truly is in danger and Nymeria is nearby, there is no doubt her trusted direwolf would come to the rescue, completing what is one of the most anticipated reunions for the series.
During the season's second trailer (above), the phrase "the lone wolf dies, but the pack survives" can be heard, but the "pack" in this instance could have more significance than we first thought.
Game of Thrones season 7 premieres July 16, 2017 on HBO.
Do you think Arya will reunite with Nymeria this season? Tell us in the comments below?