Game of Speculation: This hasn’t quite hit me yet.

Oh, boy oh boy oh boy.

Over the past few days at Watchers on the Wall (aka They Blocked Me On Twitter, But No Hard Feelings), there are TWO juicy bits of speculation fodder for me to chew on. Oh, yes. Oh fucking yes.

The first one is that someone has provided photographic evidence of Natalia Tena and Art Parkinson (aka Osha and Rickon Stark) together at a restaurant in Belfast. Give me a moment where I become That Woman who squees over how much a little boy has grown up since the last time she saw him. (“Oh my goodness, Art, when did you get so BIG?! The last time I saw you, you were knee-high to a grasshopper! Look at you! *squee*squee*squee*”) Seriously, though, I think this is a good sign that Osha and Rickon are going to show up in S6. Probably in the company of Lord Umber.

Where might they show up?

I’m thinking…something like…Lord Umber brings his peeps down to Winterfell to fuck the Boltons’ shit up. He has little Rickon with him (although Rickon’s not so little anymore!), and he’s intending to reinstate Rickon as a representative of House Stark to become the new Lord of Winterfell. Technically Bran should be the Lord of Winterfell, but since Bran is tangled up in a tree in the far north, Rickon is the best candidate according to the logic of male primogeniture, which most of Westeros follows.

(The Dornish use equal primogeniture; according to their laws, Myrcella should ascend to the Iron Throne ahead of Tommen, Cersei should inherit Casterly Rock ahead of her brothers, and Sansa should inherit Winterfell right after Robb. The rest of Westeros uses male primogeniture, which is why Tommen sat the throne while Myrcella was assigned to become a Dornish princess, Cersei becomes the Lady of Casterly Rock only because one brother is in the Kingsguard and the other is a fugitive, and why Sansa is seen as the heir to Winterfell only after all her brothers have died.)

Or maybe we’ll see Rickon and Osha with the Umbers at Last Hearth. Perhaps Davos will pay them a visit on some business or other. Not sure how the show would wrangle that connection, as Stannis is now dead and his claim to the throne was fucked anyway, but in the books, Davos is assigned to go find Rickon on the island of Skagos and bring him to a certain Northern lord. Last Hearth is the last castle before the Gift, so there’s potential for a connection to the folks at Castle Black.

I haven’t given this a whole lot of thought just yet.

It gets better than that, though.

The real Break-the-Internet news today is…y’all ready for this? The real news at WotW is: Sue the Fury tells us that someone she trusts told her that Rory McCann has been seen at a hotel in Belfast that’s frequently used by Game of Thrones cast members during filming. Rory McCann aka The Hound.

One of the big character re-convergences that a lot of fans are predicting for S6 is Cleganebowl, in which Sandor Clegane returns to King’s Landing as the Faith’s representative in Cersei’s trial by combat, and he does battle with his re-animated brother.

I’m not sure how I feel about that theory. But I am on board with the idea of Sandor Clegane still being alive. I think he’s the gravedigger that Brienne spots during her trip to the Quiet Isle in A Feast for Crows. I think the Elder Brother knows him so well because he’s still alive. That’s just in the books, though. He could appear in a totally different context on the show, especially because Brienne is the one who chucked him off the cliff on the show. The context around his reappearance is already different.

If Sandor reappears in the Riverlands along with the Septon Meribald/Elder Brother character, I think (and I haven’t given this matter much thought, either) the most viable candidate for the character who deals with him, is Jaime. I’m not sure we’ll see the Quiet Isle, so much as Sandor traveling in the company of the Meribald/Elder composite. I have speculated in earlier posts (possibly getting too ambitious) that Brienne and Podrick could have Sansa and Theon with them for part of S6, and that Jaime may be making a trip through the Riverlands, and that Brienne and Jaime are likely to reconnect. I may be getting a bit too far with all this, but either way, I think Jaime and his peeps are likely to cross paths with the traveling priest and de-armored Sandor Clegane before Brienne and her party. I think the reason why Brienne made the trip to the Quiet Isle in the books was that Martin was using her POV to show us how the war was affecting the common people. She learned about Arya and the Hound from the Elder Brother, but in the S4 finale she encountered Arya and the Hound with her own eyes, and it ended badly. Her role in the overall plot in the books didn’t really depend on anything she learned on the Quiet Isle, except in ways that have already been reworked on the show.

So, anyway. I’m not a fan of him showing up to duel with his undead brother in Cersei’s trial by combat, but I also don’t really have an argument against that, except that he was injured pretty badly in his fight with Brienne, and I feel like he shouldn’t be in fighting shape after sustaining those injuries. Surely, the Faith should select a fully able-bodied combatant for Cersei’s trial. But at the same time, I haven’t given Sandor’s reappearance all that much thought, either. I like the idea of him being still alive, though. I’m absolutely here for Sandor having survived that fight.