Game of Cliffhangers, Addendum 2: Ramsay Fucking Bolton

I thought of something else! SPOILERS AHOY, MATEYS.

Last thing we heard Ramsay say, before we got to Theon and Sansa’s escape (I reiterate: Theon and Sansa will be okay. They’ll survive the fall. They’ll recover.), is him saying to one of his soldiers: “My wife is lonely.”

We don’t see any more of Ramsay for the rest of the episode, but there is his expectation: he thinks he’ll mosey back into the castle, find his pretty Stark meekly waiting in her chamber, and he’ll abuse her some more. Maybe he’ll make his loyal Reek watch.

This is what happens when Book!Ramsay learns that Theon and Jeyne have escaped the castle: he sends a threatening letter to Jon Snow.

Mully had not been wrong; the old steward was trembling, his face as pale as the snows outside. “I am being foolish, Lord Commander, but … this letter frightens me. See here?”

Bastard, was the only word written outside the scroll. No Lord Snow or Jon Snow or Lord Commander. Simply Bastard. And the letter was sealed with a smear of hard pink wax. “You were right to come at once,” Jon said. You were right to be afraid. He cracked the seal, flattened the parchment, and read.

Your false king is dead, bastard. He and all his host were smashed in seven days of battle. I have his magic sword. Tell his red whore.

Your false king’s friends are dead. Their heads upon the walls of Winterfell. Come see them, bastard. Your false king lied, and so did you. You told the world you burned the King-Beyond-the-Wall. Instead you sent him to Winterfell to steal my bride from me.

I will have my bride back. If you want Mance Rayder back, come and get him. I have him in a cage for all the north to see, proof of your lies. The cage is cold, but I have made him a warm cloak from the skins of the six whores who came with him to Winterfell.

I want my bride back. I want the false king’s queen. I want his daughter and his red witch. I want his wildling princess. I want his little prince, the wildling babe. And I want my Reek. Send them to me, bastard, and I will not trouble you or your black crows. Keep them from me, and I will cut out your bastard’s heart and eat it.

It was signed,

Ramsay Bolton,

Trueborn Lord of Winterfell.

Martin, George R.R. (2011-07-12). A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 5) (pp. 994-995). Random House Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Clearly, some things happened differently in the books. Mance Rayder wasn’t really killed. Mance was married, his wife Dalla died in childbirth, Gilly was wet-nursing their newborn son before she and Samwell took off for Oldtown, and Stannis left Melisandre, Selyse and Shireen at Castle Black. The “wildling princess” is Mance’s late wife’s sister, Val. The “six whores” who came to Winterfell with Mance are difficult to explain, but anyway, there were six wildling women at Winterfell, posing as washerwomen, and they were involved in Theon and Jeyne’s escape. Ramsay is lying his ass off when he claims Stannis and his host were killed; they haven’t yet reached Winterfell, and they’re in much better shape than they were late this season. Needless to say, Stannis Baratheon is very much alive, healthy and ready to fuck shit up at this stage in the books.

Jon’s receiving the letter leads directly to the circumstances of his (probably temporary) death at the hands of his Sworn Brothers. The show handled that differently. He received no letter from Ramsay before the other Night’s Watch guys stabbed him.

Anyway. The point is, when Ramsay finds out his loyal Reek got out of the castle and took his obedient little bride with him, Ramsay is pissed. He wants his bride back, and he wants his Reek. He’s an abuser who doesn’t want to part with his victims. He’s willing to risk a confrontation with armed men when he loses his playthings.

And I think TV!Ramsay will be equally pissed off when he comes back to Winterfell and can’t find his loyal Reek or his pretty bride anywhere. Their bodies will not be found outside the walls, because they walk away from the fall. While Stannis and his host didn’t stand a chance against that absurdly large army of mounted men the Boltons brought out to meet him (seriously, where the fuck were they keeping that many men and horses?), the time they spent smashing Stannis’s host caused Ramsay to lose two of his favorite pets.

The questions are: Whom will Ramsay blame for Theon and Sansa’s escape, and how will he embarrass himself in trying to get them back?

Meanwhile, when our remaining Stark and her foster brother climb out of that deep snow and discover that they are still alive, what will they do to stay out of the Boltons’ custody? I don’t think they have any money on them, and they can’t just hop back into the castle and ask for something to eat. The local innkeeper might feed them for free because Sansa is who she is, but first they’d have to get there in one piece, and it wouldn’t be safe for them to stay there as long as the Boltons hold Winterfell.

There’s the problem with the finale: not enough people died.