Season 5’s second episode featured two upcoming trips for major characters, one explicitly stated, the other implied. In both cases though, the events of The House of Black and White presented some huge departures from the novels.
Biting Back at the Viper
Cersei’s understandable concern for her daughter’s safety and Jaime’s guilt at his own shortcomings as a father have spurred a trip to Dorne for the latter of the two. If Game of Thrones was sticking to the books, at this point he should technically be traveling to the Riverlands instead, to confront Blackfish Tully. But if the show intends to touch on this part of his story at all, it will not be this season.
Before leaving however, he enlists Bronn as a traveling companion. Most would agree that this is a pleasant change from the books for the sellsword fan favorite, who would otherwise have very few appearances following Tyrion’s trial. The Kingslayer’s visit is likely to have a markedly different flavor than Ser Arys Oakheart’s however. Unlike the other member of the Kingsguard, Jaime will almost definitely not be seduced by a Dornish woman (though Bronn may) and the thought of him actually partaking in a plot involving Myrcella is ridiculous.
So what exactly will he find in Sunspear? The Sand Snakes and a very formidable Areo Hotah are two easy answers. Whether Hotah’s axe will end the life of a character as it did in the books has yet to be seen.
A Southern Plot
If Jaime and Bronn will be absorbing Ser Arys Oakheart’s story, it seems that Ellaria Sand will be doing the same for Arianne Martell. This was made readily apparent by her snake coil bracelet. Although it may have seemed insignificant at first glance, Arianne (who was the driving force behind a Dornish subplot in the books) was seen wearing that bracelet during her first appearance in the series.
This is a very strong indicator that Oberyn’s former lover will be replacing Prince Doran’s daughter. Seeing as the subplot in the books revolved around the crowning of Princess Myrcella (who would take the Iron Throne before Tommen under Dornish Law), and Ellaria is overtly hostile to the young girl, the plot is likely to take a different form onscreen. But the bloody end result may still be the same.
A Wedding Proposal
Though it was a very brief comment during the episode, Littlefinger mentioned that his “wedding proposal was accepted”. But who is the proposed couple? A likely answer would be Sansa and Ramsay. Jeyne Poole, who has not been casted, will not be fulfilling her role as fake Arya.
This leaves two realistic options, Myranda, Ramsay’s girlfriend, and Sansa. If Sansa does indeed take Jeyne’s place, it could fairly be asked whether she will be posing as Arya at all, or simply revealing herself as the oldest of the two Stark daughters. Though this does raise questions about her marriage to Tyrion Lannister. She will undoubtedly recognize Theon. Her reaction to his subhuman state may spark sympathy for her former childhood companion, and send her down a path of defiance in the face of her Bolton husband.
Brienne’s Second Rejection
This episode featured Brienne getting rejected by yet another Stark girl. The very unexpected crossing of paths between Brienne and Sansa initially seemed to be only the addition of events to storylines that would otherwise be quite limited at this point (in the books at least).
It may prove to be more than just a brief encounter though. With Sansa traveling North, and Brienne following, one can easily picture her assuming the role of Winterfell’s liberator and taking Mance Rayder’s place. If this is indeed the case, it doesn’t bode well for the Wildling King’s fate.