One of the more intriguing plotlines that was set up in the Season 3 finale of Game of Thrones was Yara Greyjoy embarking on a mission to rescue her brother, Theon. We find this interesting because, unlike most of what takes place on the show, this storyline does not exist in the A Song of Ice and Fire (ASOIAF) book series. Not even a little bit.
Warning: This article contains spoilers from the A Song of Ice and Fire book series. Click away now if you don't want to know!
Theon and Yara (called Asha in the books, but changed for the show to avoid confusion with the character Osha) do reunite in the books, but not until the fifth book in the series. In that storyline, Yara has a tentative hold on the castle of Deepwood Motte in the North when Stannis Baratheon and his newly-gained army of Northmen storm the castle and kidnap her while she’s trying to retreat.
Meanwhile, Theon (or Reek, as we expect him to be called next season) remains a prisoner of Ramsay Bolton. Ramsay is arranged to marry Arya Stark (an imposter, not the real Arya) by the Lannisters to make him the new Lord of Winterfell, and their wedding takes place at Winterfell. While there, Theon escapes with fake-Arya and eventually makes his way to Stannis and his army, who are marching on Winterfell to retake it from the Boltons. There, he sees his sister. The two exchange very few words since they’re both prisoners of Stannis for their crimes against the North. That's as far as their story has gone.
Now, Season 4 of GoT is going to be mostly based on the second half of the third book of ASOIAF, and that book doesn’t feature Theon or Yara at all, and Yara's rescue plot never exists. They GoT writers are going to have to invent some plot, or move up events that take place in the fourth or fifth.
Theon and Yara's father, Balon Greyjoy, does die in the third book, albeit off-page, so we do expect his death to be included next season. This news could have an affect on Yara. If she hears of his passing, she may abandon the Theon rescue mission and return to the Iron Islands to try and secure her father’s crown for herself, since she does try to seize power in the fourth book.
Another possibility could be that, while on her rescue mission, Yara runs into Stannis and his army and is taken prisoner by him then, since she is not in possession of any Northern castles on the show. That would leave her out of the Iron Islands power struggle, but she loses in the book anyway, so her absence wouldn’t really affect the plot too much.
The third option is that she makes it to the Dreadfort and if that’s the case, then all bets are off. Maybe she rescues Theon. Maybe Ramsay’s already gone to Winterfell and she finds the place empty. Maybe Ramsay kills her. We really don’t know what’s going to happen, and that has us pretty excited!
How do you think this plotline will play out? Sound off in the comments below.