“Game of Thrones” Season 6 episode 4 “Book of the Stranger” has revealed the return of Lord Petyr Baelish. Love him or hate him — he is a master of political backstabbings, manipulating peasants and lords alike he is now set on using House Arryn and the Vale for his personal goals.
WARNING: Spoilers Ahead
After sending off Sansa to secure an alliance with the then Warden of the North Roose Bolton, Baelish has returned to the Eyrie where Robin Arryn is practicing archery. Yohn Royce, wary of his intentions, questions him regarding Sansa’s marriage to Roose’s son Ramsay.
Baelish denies Royce’s accusations that he used Sansa for his personal gains, instead claiming that Bolton’s men forced him to give up Sansa. Still refusing to believe him, he turns to the young Lord Arryn and said that it is only his opinion of him that matters.
Robin Arryn is obviously distracted by his new pet falcon, a gift from Baelish, and casually suggests that Lord Royce be thrown out of the moon door. Sensing his obvious fear in the face of being executed, Baelish again confirms Royce’s loyalty to the Lord of the Vale to him.
After which Baelish tells the young Lord Arryn that it is imperative that they save Sansa as she is still not safe with the Boltons after her. Robin Arryn agrees, saying that she is her cousin to which Petyr Baelish summons all the knights of the Vale unofficially ending the Vale’s neutrality.
So how will the Vale fare should they enter the upcoming war? Will they succumb to the larger armies of the other houses or will they hold their ground and arise as the victors?
House Arryn is one of the least mentioned great houses in “Game of Thrones” alongside House Martell of Dorne. Neutral during the War of Five Kings, they have their army intact many of whom were veterans of Robert’s Rebellion.
Under the rule of Jon Arryn, the Vale was a formidable house, along with the river lords and the lords of the north, they defeated the much larger armies of House Targaryen. Now with Jon’s young son Robin severely lacking the ability to rule and to fight, the Vale has lost much of its former might.
Although offensively they are no match to the large armies of House Lannister and House Tyrell, defensively the Vale has the upper hand. As Petyr Baelish explained to Sansa, the lords of the Vale used the terrain to their advantage where one man can be equal to 10,000. Even Tyrion Lannister noted that the seat of House Arryn, the Eyrie, is impregnable from any attack.
Now with Petyr Baelish technically in command of the knights of the Vale, they are a serious threat to the crown. Although Baelish’s first order of business is to rescue Sansa Stark, it will not be long before he sets his eyes on the Iron Throne.
Find out more about his schemes in ‘Game of Thrones’ every Sunday on HBO.