Well, my friends – it’s that time again.  Another great show is ending and we’ll have to wait for season 2.  Of course we can all be thankful that HBO already approved season 2 for ‘Thrones’ but even so, waiting can be so frustrating.  Now that the finale is upon us, let’s look back and see what transpired to bring us to where we are now.

Ned Stark of Winterfell:

What an unfortunate set of events have transpired for him.  He was in Winterfell with his family, minding his own business when he receives a visit from his old friend (and current ruler of the realm).  The king tells him that he wants Ned to become The Hand, a role Ned doesn’t particularly want, but accepts because, well – he has no choice.  He leaves his family and heads to King’s Landing with the royal entourage.

Once there, Ned’s neck deep in secrets, cover ups and lies.  He tries to retain his honor and succeeds in doing so but at a terrible price (we’ll get to that in a minute).  While he’s there he starts investigating how the other Hand had died.  It seems the previous Hand stumbled upon inappropriate and very sensitive information. Not only does King Robert have bastards across the city, but none of his children with Cersei are actually his by blood – they’re Jaime’s, Cersei’s twin brother (yes, you can gag now; I almost did so myself while writing this).

He confronts Cersei so she can flee the city with her children but instead she has the King killed on a hunting accident (or so it’s implied).  Once that occurs, she moves her son Joffrey into position to seize the crown.  While the king died, he wrote a letter declaring Ned regeant until his rightful heir came of age, but his letter is ripped up and Ned is arrested.

Sansa pleads to Joffrey that he show mercy toward her father if he were to confess, and he agrees to this.  Unfortunately, he doesn’t keep his word and once Ned confesses, he’s beheaded.

Robb Stark:

Robb’s place of action happens more toward the end of the show. In response to his father’s arrest and imprisonment, he rallies an army and marches toward King’s Landing.  He does whatever is necessary (agrees to marry a Frey daughter, sacrifices the lives of 2,000 men to capture Jaime Lannister) to secure his father and sisters’ safe passage back home.  His mother accompanies him on the journey.

Catelyn Stark:

Catelyn has been very busy indeed.  Insistent that Tyrion Lannister tried to have her son, Bran, killed, she seizes the dwarf and brings him to her sister’s castle.  Unfortunately she doesn’t realize that her sister isn’t who she used to be and is without reason.  Using his exceptional wits, Tyrion wins his freedom and finds himself back at his family’s camp, and Catelyn is without a Lannister prisoner.  But as stated earlier, this is just temporary because she does in fact secure Jamie during a battle.

The Dothraki:

Dany is forced into a marriage she didn’t want any part of by her ambition-driven brother.  But she makes the best of the situation and wins her husband’s favor.  By doing so, they seem to fall in love and the Dothraki people start to love her as one of their own.  She also becomes pregnant with a son.  Her brother becomes consumed by jealousy.  He marches into the Dothraki grounds with his weapon on and threatens the Khaleesi.  Drogo gets up and tells him that he shall have the crown he vies for.  Restraining him, Drogo takes Viserys’ gold belt, melts it down and pours the contents over his head (killing him, of course).

With her brother out of the picture, Dany convinces her husband to position himself for the Iron Throne.  But during a battle he’s cut and a witch that’s been taken as a slave treats the wound.  Unfortunately it begins to fester and Drogo is close to death.  Consumed with grief, Dany orders the witch to use blood magic to rescue her husband.  A Dothraki soldier pushes the Khaleesi down and triggers labor.  Joran then grabs her and runs into the tent where the blood magic’s taking place.

Jon Snow:

Poor guy… he went from having a nice, warm bed in the Winterfell castle to becoming part of the Night Watch.  Even so, he’s made the best of his circumstances and started to fit in among the others.  He had every intention of staying until he heard Robb had gone to war to fight the Lannisters… now he cannot decide if he should stay or leave.  If he stays, he abandons his brother when he needs him most.  If he leaves, he’s beheaded.  Decisions, decisions…

Arya and Sansa:

The girls follow their father to King’s Landing.  Sansa is groomed to marry Joffrey; Arya remains a tomboy and takes sword lessons from a teacher.  Both adjust to life there, but neither is quite prepared for what is to follow.

They witness their father brought before King Joffrey and beheaded for crimes he never committed.  What will they do next?  Hopefully we’ll find out the answer to this question and others on Sunday’s finale of ‘Game of Thrones.’