Come Sail Away
...because you do not want to be anywhere near Westeros when Season 5 rolls around.
If I Were Here To Kill You, Would I Be This Obvious About It? Oh, I Guess I Probably Would
Who called the meeting? Jon Snow.
What's it about? Officially? Negotiating a peace agreement with Mance. Unofficially? Well, funny story.
How'd it go? To his credit, Jon's "I come in peace" poker face holds up quite well for the first few minutes. He even manages to choke down a few sips of Mance's private-label booze, which may or may not contain fermented mammoth urine (hey, there's more than one way to make hooch north of the Wall, you know?). But Lord Snow's true intentions for the meeting show themselves eventually, and Mance questions whether Jon is truly willing to carry out this suicide mission. And it looks like he might not be, but fortunately for both of them, something pretty big happens to change the field of play. To wit...
I Am A Very Dull Man, And This Land Of Ice And Snow Seems To Suit Me Perfectly
Alert Type: Surprise Invasion Alert (!)
Issue: Just when it looks like Jon and/or Mance is going to die, an army on horseback rides through the camp and starts killing Wildlings by the dozen, until Mance is forced to surrender...to none other than Stannis Baratheon!
Mitigating Circumstances: We've already heard from Mance that the Wildling Collective has no interest in conquering, only in staying safe from the White Walkers. And Stannis is one of the only leaders who recognizes the severity of the zombie threat. There might be a genuine alliance to be had here. Might.
Resolution: Stannis is in control of the Wall and Beyond for now.
Spoiler: Melisandre is still the one pulling the strings. Will her missionary zeal (pun intended) be enough to persuade the atheist Wildlings to follow Stannis?
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Not Without My Brother
Cersei visits Tywin in a final attempt to put the kibosh on her forced marriage to Loras Tyrell. For once, her motives aren't selfish; she's got Tommen's welfare at heart, and she knows that if she's not in King's Landing, Margaery and Tywin will be fighting over the boy like he was the last piece of pigeon pie.
Tywin still doesn't believe that Cersei really has it in her to defy him like this, but she surprises him by expressing her willingness (eagerness, even) to deploy the nuclear option and tell the world who the real father of her children is. Incest: The ultimate trump card!
Chains and collars, suitable for medium-size dragons. Must be fire-proof. Collars should be snug but not constrictive. In fact, it might be okay if they can just slip out of them and continue murdering children and livestock. Well, not okay okay, but like, these are my babies and I love them and don't you understand that? If you want me to acknowledge your feelings, you have to acknowledge mine. Send photos via raven to Danaerys Stormborn Targaryen, Mother of (sniff) Dragons, at One Royal Plaza, Meereen, Essos 91604.
Firestarter II: Mystical Bugaloo
Name: Unknown. We're going with Fire Girl. Age: Somewhere between 10 and the age of the universe. Occupation: Cave-guarder, occasional undead skeleton fighter, liaison to the Three-Eyed Raven. Goal: To get Team Bran inside the cave (minus Jojen, RIP) before those crazy Harryhausen skeletons kill them all -- so Mr. Three-Eyed can start teaching Bran how to fly (which will surely be a relief to Hodor's aching back). Sample Dialogue: "Come with me or die with him!"
Fight! Fight! Fight!
Brienne vs. The Hound
There aren't a lot of Starks left for Arya to reunite with at this point, but the appearance of Brienne of Tarth -- a sworn ally and protector of Catelyn -- has to count for something, right? Shouldn't Arya be totally psyched to meet someone who actually wants to keep her safe, instead of just doing it for the money?
No? Arya couldn't give two shits about Brienne, even after their touching exchange about female empowerment? Well, fair enough. Let the fight begin.
J. Walter Weatherman Lesson
Let's Make That Murder Charge A Wee Bit More Valid
That's right, Jaime's here to rescue Tyrion from his impending death sentence. Varys is waiting at the top of the stairs for him; all Tyrion has to do is knock the secret knock and he's home free!
Or, maybe he'll take a detour.
Is that Shae in Tywin's bed?
Well, this can't end well.
Confirmed: Did not end well.
Oh, but Tyrion's just getting started.
Hey now! This is where The Hand does his most profound thinking. Sure, most of that thinking is corrupt and horrible, but still. Maybe let the guy wipe and wash his hands before doing him in?
Maybe not. Happy Father's Day, Tywin!
Valar Morghulis, Y'all!
With the Hound (mostly) dead and having no interest in joining Brienne, Arya decides to book a trip north, in hopes of reuniting with her half-brother Jon Snow. Alas, the only ship she can find isn't heading that way; they're going east...to Braavos.
Wait a minute!
YES YES YES HERE IT IS SHE'S BUSTING OUT THE COIN OF JAQEN H'GHAR AND SAYING THE MAGIC WORDS
Commence your anxious thumb-twiddling until April 2015, everyone!