The premier episode of season six of “Game of Thrones” had quite a few great scenes, including Daenerys facing down her Dothraki captors, Tyrian and Varys bantering about how best to rule the city now that the Mother of Dragons has flown away, and the Sand Snakes slaughtering the King of Dorne, his heir, and his chief guard. But the most intriguing for future story-lines concerns what happens with Sansa Stark.

Sansa is one of the most tragic characters in fantasy history. A young noblewoman with romantic notions of what life is all about, she has spent the last five seasons being used and abused by just about everyone she encounters.

Last year she and Reek (aka Theon Greyjoy) leaped over the battlements of Winterfell to make their escape from Ramsey Bolton, the psychopath who raped and tortured the former and castrated and tortured the latter.

The episode shows Sansa and Reek on the run through a snowy forest, the hounds baying at their heels. They are forced to cross an ice bound, chilly to the bone river to try to get their scent off the dogs. Nevertheless, they are soon surrounded by Ramsey’s men. They are on the point to be dragged back to Winterfell to the tender ministrations of Ramsey when who should charge out of the trees but Brienne of Tarth, the homely but noble woman knight, and her trusty squire Podrick. Swords flash and men die. Reek suddenly remembers that he is Theon Greyjoy of the Iron Islands and makes a couple of Ramsey’s men pay the iron price.

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The scene ends with Brienne swearing fealty to Sansa and the young noblewoman graciously accepting it, realizing that the knight is the first real friend that she has encountered since Tyrion. They head north to Castle Black and what they hope will be help from Jon Snow, who unknown to them has been murdered.

Sophie Turner, the actress who plays Sansa, hinted in a recent interview that season six of “Game of Thrones” will be the one where Sansa takes her destiny in her own hands and stops being a victim. She is the last surviving Stark so far as anyone knows, with her parents and older brother Robb dead and Arya and her younger brother missing and presumed dead. One could see her rousing the men of the North. Theon might persuade his warrior princess sister to add some Iron Islanders to come for a slice of vengeance as well, if she can be made to realize that her brother has found his courage again.

Sansa has an extensive list of people to kill, from Walder Fey who killed her mother and Robb at the Red Wedding, to the Lannisters who killed her father, to the Boltons who tortured and degraded her. In other words, she is just a typical character on “Game of Thrones.”