By Ineye Komonibo published
Since becoming a servant of the Faceless God, Arya Stark has come up with a long-running list of people that she needed to wipe off the face of the earth. The young Stark, known to hold a grudge, came up with her own personal hit list and has been using the skills she developed in the House of Black and White to seek and destroy anyone who had ever hurt her or her family. Notable names on Arya's kill list included Meryn Trant (a knight of the Kingsguard responsible for killing her mentor Syrio Forel), Melisandre (the Red Witch who kidnapped Gendry), and Walder Frey (who orchestrated the Red Wedding and slaughtered Catelynn and Robb Stark).
As Arya got older, her desire for revenge grew stronger, and her kill list grew longer. Though she was personally responsible for sending a number of the people on the list to their graves, there were others that died of other unforeseen circumstances. Both the Hound and the Mountain were at the top of Arya's list, but once Arya forgave the Hound for his crimes against her and her family, the bloodthirsty brothers battled to the death in the long-awaited Clegane Bowl. Cersei Lannister, Arya's most hated foe, was killed in what was possibly the most unsatisfying death in television history when she and Jaime were crushed by the crumbling infrastructure of the Red Keep when Daenerys set fire to the capital. Yeah, I'm gonna need the last eight years of my life back now.
It's safe to say that Arya always accomplishes what she wants to, whether it's by her own hands or through the karmic retribution of the universe. There is, however, one name that the girl with no name probably won't be able to cross off her list, and it's a big one: Ser Ilyn Payne.
Remember him? It's okay if you don't—the last time this guy was seen on-screen was in the second season of Game of Thrones. To refresh your memory, Ser Ilyn Payne was the knight responsible for carrying out the executions in King's Landing. He never spoke—the Mad King had his tongue cut out for suggesting that Tywin Lannister was the one calling the shots in Westeros—but he did kill a lot of people per the king and queen's commands. Among those that Ilyn Payne executed was one Ned Stark, Lord of Winterfell.
After discovering that the late king Robert Baratheon's children were 1) not his and 2) not the rightful heirs to the Iron Throne, Ned was accused of treason by a frantic and desperate Cersei. Joffrey, a sentient heap of garbage, sentenced the Stark patriarch to serve the rest of his days at Castle Black as a member of the Night's Watch but suddenly changed his mind, commanding Ilyn Payne to execute the Warden of the North in the Great Sept of Baelor. The knight acquiesced, beheading Ned with his own ancestral sword in front of his entire family. From that day forward, Arya vowed to kill him with her own hands, reciting his name and others every night before going to bed.
Unfortunately for Arya, it's looking like she'll never get the chance to get revenge on Ilyn Payne for the murder of her father, but it's not for the reason you think. The actor who plays Ilyn Payne, a musician named Wilko Johnson, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer shortly after his initial appearance on Game of Thrones. The good news is that Johnson was able to beat the disease and survived despite its low survival rate, but the bad news is that he hasn't appeared on the HBO series since. His character was mentioned briefly in season four, but the mute knight was never seen on-camera ever again after the Battle of Blackwater. Even if he managed to make it out of the the battle against Stannis Baratheon and his army, Ilyn Payne most likely did not survive Drogon's summer cookout in King's Landing, so Arya *technically* could cross his name off the list. Doesn't really matter who kills them as long as they're killed, right?
Now, with only one episode left in Game of Thrones, all Arya has to do is handle the last and latest name on her kill list: Daenerys Targaryen.
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