Over on Twitter, I see PoorQuentyn having this discussion with Queen Regent NFriel about the Valonqar prophecy, and this is the part where I’m tempted to slide in and ask: “Have you considered some other scenario entirely?”
They’re picturing a showdown in which the three Lannister siblings get back together and kill each other, showing everyone what a great legacy Tywin Lannister left behind, and the idea is that Casterly Rock would be so much better a setting for this devastation than King’s Landing.
Whereas what I’m picturing is that the difference between Casterly Rock and King’s Landing as the site of Cersei’s death is irrelevant, because it won’t be her brother who shows up to kill her. Suppose it isn’t even a Lannister who does her in? The idea of anyone other than Jaime being the Valonqar is the sort of idea that tends to elicit pointing-and-laughing on Twitter, and I can’t very well complain that’s unfair because I point-and-laugh at anyone who thinks Cleganebowl will be a thing, but anyway. The point is, the assumption of Valonqar Jaime presupposes other situations not in evidence. Such as this question here, also by PoorQuentyn:
Yeah, that is a logistical complication, isn’t it? What sort of circumstances would even persuade Jaime to return to KL after he burned Cersei’s letter? Seems like he just doesn’t even want to deal with his ridiculous sister anymore, yes?
PQ has already given me bigger disagreement fodder over Jaime; if I slid into his mentions and asked him to consider that Jaime is actually a good guy, he wouldn’t want to talk to me, so I won’t presume to take up his time.
Just in case Season 6 blows my current scenario to smithereens, I’ve been thinking of alternate Valonqar candidates, and as part of that process, I am open to a scenario of Cersei getting killed somewhere other than King’s Landing. I’m not sure it has to be Casterly Rock, but I can picture her leaving the capital in one piece and encountering someone else who fits a Little Brother profile and puts a stop to her reign of destruction.
Even if that’s the case, there’s still the question of what would even lead Jaime to make contact with Cersei again? Rather than shoehorn the great Lannister Greek Tragedy into an already-crowded book, I would like to suggest a different situation from the ground up: What if Cersei dies at the hand of someone outside the Lannisters? What if Jaime’s burning the letter means he really does not care about what happens to his sister anymore? What if his riding off with Brienne is effectively deserting his Kingsguard post and his Lannister army position? What if Brienne gets herself and Jaime out of the Lady Stoneheart situation alive, because kingslayers band together? What if Jaime gives up on trying to be Tywin Lannister’s son and gives his father the ultimate middle finger by siding with the Starks? What if his disgusting, toxic relationship with his sister ends with him burning her letter, leaving her to wonder what’s happened to him, while he gets on with his life?
Of course, for any of that discussion to happen, we’d have to start with the possibility that Jaime isn’t a bad guy, so instead, I’ll just encourage folks to spend a bit more time sitting in that space of Jaime putting his sister’s letter in the fire, and look at where that leads.