It’s been eight years since Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) said goodbye to half-brother, Jon Snow, on Game of Thrones. The last time they were together was during the second episode of Season 1, when Jon (Kit Harrington) gave his baby sister a meager little sword named “Needle,” before riding off with his uncle to join the Night’s Watch. Since then, the long lost siblings have been on drastic different paths throughout the past seven seasons, narrowly missing one other while traveling through the Seven Kingdoms, fighting tooth and nail fo survive through great tragedies and epic defeats.
In the premiere episode of Season 8, as the fatal threat of the Night King and his Army of the Dead looms closer by the second, the moment Jon sees Arya upon his return to Winterfell, it’s as if every terror, near or far, melted away. However, when Jon and Daenerys Targaryen‘s (Emilia Clark) march inside the gates, trailed by The Hound, Tyrion, Varys, and two dragons… her smile quickly fades. And she hides.
But when she finally runs up and embraces him, Jon nearly falls to tears. Sh reveals that she still has Needle. Jon asks, “Have you used it?” – “once or twice,” she responds.
The blessed reunion quickly turns to more important matters of discussion: Sansa’s intelligence, the business of war, mourning the many Stark family deaths, and eventually, Jon’s true identity which makes him the rightful heir to the throne.
It’s wild to think that these two characters have only had a total of two episodes together, but their connection remained a constant thread throughout the entire series. Both considered themselves to be outcasts from the Starks, the kids that never really fit in with the noble family. But Arya has always loved Jon as a true brother. She loved him when it was assumed that he was Ned Stark’s bastard son, and she will continue to love him as Aegon Targaryen, which means he’s technically her cousin.
Semantics aside, Jon and Arya, two of the bravest warriors and most honorable souls in the entire realm, will be a force to reckon with as the Great War approaches. Before they catch up with past histories, Arya will need to warm up to Jon’s new Queen, Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage) acting as her trusted hand, and prepare for the battle of their lives against the Night Walkers, and a way to knock out Viserion, the dragon of the dead.