Warning: The following article contains spoilers for Game of Thrones' season 7 finale 'The Dragon and the Wolf' and, potentially, the future.
Game of Thrones' Cersei Lannister has firmly established herself as the ultimate evil in the Seven Kingdoms, but is she really manipulative enough to fake a pregnancy?
Throughout the HBO show's seven seasons, viewers have watched as Cersei's three children have been killed off one by one, each in a more grisly fashion than the one before.
And yet, the Queen of the Seven Kingdoms still hasn't given up on having a family. It was revealed deep in the seventh season that Cersei is expecting another baby with brother-lover Jaime. (Hey, don't blame us! We don't write that stuff!)
In HBO's final "Inside the Episode" video of the year, Game of Thrones showrunner David Benioff floats the possibility that Cersei may be pulling yet another grand scheme simply because her brother Tyrion has offered an alliance with Daenerys to battle the White Walkers.
"It seems like she's bluffing, and [Tyrion] reads her bluff," Benioff explained. "But she wanted him to read her bluff, and it was all part of her game.
"Cersei has become quite good at playing this game. She wasn't in power, but she was on the edges of power and she learned how to operate in that environment. She plays Tyrion pretty beautifully here."
Now, "her bluff" could potentially refer to a faked pregnancy, or more generally, to her willingness to agree to a truce that she has no actual intention of keeping.
Either way, it seems Cersei has finally lost her staunchest supporter Jaime, since her brother refused to go along with her ruse to invade the Northern kingdoms while they're off fighting the White Walkers.
Unfortunately, we'll be waiting quite a while for answers. Game of Thrones will return for its eighth and final season either next year or 2019.
Justin Harp is Digital Spy’s US-based Night News Editor covering all things entertainment on West Coast time.
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