Arya Returns To Winterfell On 'Game Of Thrones' & It Will Give You Serious Chills

by Ani Bundel

This post contains spoilers from Game Of Thrones Season 7, Episode 4. Last week, the race to see which Stark could make it back to Winterfell first was on. Would it be Bran traveling south from the Wall, or Arya coming up from the Crossroads Inn? Bran won, but not by much. He's only been home for half an episode when his sister comes in. This week, Arya returns to Winterfell on Game of Thrones.

I'd like to note for the record that Bran was given a hero's welcome by Sansa, with everyone immediately believing who he was when he showed up, despite all of them having been shown a body by Theon back in the day that was claimed to be his, and the character having been hit by the puberty stick hard in the intervening years. Meanwhile, here comes Arya Stark, looking not all that much different that she did in Season 1, and being told to buzz off by the guards because she knows who the original Master of Arms and Maester were.

Seriously, I know that Sansa's pretty busy, but Arya's right -- she really needs better gate guards than that. Or at least ones who will pay attention to their prisoner rather than arguing among themselves which one should be watching her. That was just embarrassing for all involved.

Still, despite the uselessness of those who let her in, the resulting reunion between Sansa and Arya down in the crypts was nicely understated, and Sansa first weeps to see Arya, and then Arya slowly lets her guard down until she too reaches for an embrace.

Another nice touch: how to deal with how much both girls have changed since they last saw each other when Ned threatened to send them home to the North just before he was arrested. Neither of them took the easy way home, and both have through their circumstances, become the people they wanted, even if they didn't know it. Sansa is every inch a lady and a good ruler. Arya is every inch a badass and someone who shouldn't be underestimated.


Adding Bran to the family reunion only made things even better, even if he did creep out Sansa both by knowing about Arya's list and by seeming to confirm that Arya wasn't joking about crossing off all the names on it. Don't worry, Sansa, you might have been a bitch to Arya when you guys were younger, but your name is not on that list. (Littlefinger, on the other hand...)


As for Bran handing over the catspaw to Arya when she arrived, that's going to send fans into theory town for days, isn't it? Not only because it helpfully reveals to Sansa that Littlefinger is trying to use Bran in some manner (though let's be real, Sansa needs to know that0, but because of how he insisted she take it. We know Bran sees things: the past (Sansa's wedding), and the present (Arya at the Inn).

What does he see in the future that drives him to hand her said Valyrian steel? As we know, such blades are very effective against White Walkers...