Spoilers for the Season 4 finale of Game of Thrones follow.
Now that is [spoilered] and is off to , Game of Thrones fans will have to let their questions stew for a while. Seasons 5 and 6 have been confirmed by HBO, and fans have guessed that based on past scheduling patterns the show will probably return in April of 2015. Meanwhile, these are the bullet points producers and writers had better cover if they don't want fans to revolt.
What exactly is the meaning of the Braavosi coin that Jaqen H'ghar gave Arya?
The closing sequence of this season harked back to the finale of Season 2, in which Jaqen gave Arya a coin and the instructions to use the words valar morghulis if she needed his help again. We know, courtesy of the many languages spoken around Dany, that the words translate to "all men must die" — this season's tagline — but it's not clear that Arya knows what she's saying. The coin has earned her free passage to Braavos, but we don't know why or what will happen once she gets there.
Is the Hound dead?
When Arya denies Sandor Clegane the mercy of a Needle through the heart, it's clear that she — and he — assume he's not long for this world. (Cause of death: lost ear, fall down a rocky cliff, what appears to be a broken femur and a head wound.) However, he was still breathing last we saw him, so you never know.
What about his brother?
Ditto the Mountain. It turned out that the Viper's weapon was — appropriately enough — tipped with venom, and Gregor Clegane is, says Grand Maester Pycelle, done for. But Qyburn has other plans, leaving the Mountain's fate unknown.
Who will fill the King's Landing power vacuum?
No Tywin equals no Lannister patriarch, no Hand of the King, nobody forcing Cersei to marry Loras Tyrell, nobody working the strings behind the still-too-young King Tommen. Will Cersei step into his place as the leading Lannister, or is she too concerned with the welfare of her children to actually do the work of ruling?
Where is Tyrion going?
He's on a ship, in a box. It's headed somewhere in the Free Cities that Varys doesn't mind tagging along for, but the precise plan is unknown.
What are Stannis' plans for the North?
The last remaining Baratheon brother swoops in to spell the Night's Watch in their fight against the free folk, but it's not clear how he knew to show up north of The Wall or how he intends to use that position in his larger play for control of Westeros. Jon seems to have convinced him to hear what Mance Rayder has to say, and we know that Mance wants to get his people south of the Wall for protection from the White Walkers, but we don't yet know how Stannis will respond to that plea.
Will Brienne ever find Sansa?
Brienne's pledge to protect the Stark girls has thus far proved easier said than done, and now Arya has slipped through her grasp, seemingly once and for all. She's bound for the Eyrie, but (a) she knows now that Lysa is dead, so it's not as obvious a destination, and (b) Sansa, in disguise, has already left that stronghold.
Where is Drogon?
Now that Dany has lost the ability to control (and feed) her dragons, Viserion and Rhaegal have been condemned to the catacombs, where they'll live in chains. The third dragon, Drogon, remains at large.
Is there any Theon left inside Reek?
We know that Reek was able to briefly pretend to be Theon Greyjoy, and we also know that complete domination of Reek has payed off for Ramsay Snow-now-Bolton. But Ramsay is still traveling around with a former enemy. If Reek is able to summon his old self, that power dynamic could change.
What's the deal with the Children of the Forest?
Bran finally met the Three-Eyed Raven, under a weirwood tree in the far North, having been led there by one of the Children of the Forest, the ancient race that lived in Westeros before the First Men. What they want with him, however, is yet to be disclosed.
What will happen to Myrcella now that Oberyn is dead?
Tommen's sister Myrcella remains in Dorne as a ward of the Martell family, but Oberyn Martell's death in King's Landing can't have made her host family too happy.
When will we meet that big spoilery character that people who read the books are upset wasn't in Season 4?
The lack of a very particular cliffhanger at the end of Season 4 has fans of the books upset. If you don't know what that spoiler is, we won't be the ones to tell you — but suffice it to say that a major character introduction is likely to happen sooner rather than later. The only question is how soon, and how will we not explode with anticipation before that day?
How's Ser Pounce holding up?
Tommen's fan-favorite cat only appeared once in Season 4, but Season 5 is still open for some kitty-cat cuteness between the inevitable murders and battles.