"Game of Thrones" Season 6 is finally here. Fans have waited months for the latest chapter in the hit HBO series, and this season will be the most intriguing yet as it goes further away from the "A Song of Ice and Fire" novels. Ahead of the season premiere, let's take a look back at what happened in the "Game of Thrones" Season 5 finale, including where every character left off.
In the North
Stannis Baratheon may have had the strongest claim to the Iron Throne, but no really cares about what's right in Westeros. In a fit of desperation and religious fervor, Stannis made the shocking decision to sacrifice his daughter Shireen to the Red God. Half of Stannis' army abandoned him, and the loss of her daughter was too much to bear for Selyse, who hanged herself. Melisandre also fled from the camp.
Stannis presses forth with the Battle of Winterfell, but the Bolton army quickly overwhelms the few soldiers still loyal to House Baratheon. Brienne, who was watching the battle from nearby, finds a wounded Stannis on the battlefield. She fulfills her oath to the late Renly Baratheon and executes the fallen king.
The Battle of Winterfell serves as a perfect distraction for Sansa Stark to escape from Ramsay Bolton. Reek/Theon kills Myranda, but the only choice for Sansa and Theon is to jump off a ledge.
As Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, Jon Snow sends Sam and Gilly to Oldtown. Sam would train to be a maester while learning what he could about the White Walkers from ancient texts.
Ser Davos request for help from the Wildlings is denied. As he and Jon Snow are discussing the matter, Melisandre arrives at Castle Black. Davos quickly figures out Shireen was killed.
Jon Snow is lured to the courtyard by Olly, only to find a group of traitorous brothers of the Night's Watch waiting for him with knives. Young Olly delivers the final blow and the season ends with Jon Snow dead.
In King's Landing
Cersei, after empowering the religious group known as the Sparrows earlier in the season, accepts her punishment in a humiliating walk of atonement. A broken Cersei arrives at the Red Keep where she is met by her uncle, Kevan Lannister, and the disgraced maester Qyburn. The latter's experiment appears to be a resounding success as a giant warrior in gold armor carries Cersei away. The new member of the Kingsguard is Ser Strong, formerly Ser Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane.
The death of Oberyn Martell does not sit well with Ellaria and the Sand Snakes. After a failed kidnapping attempt of Myrcella that landed Bronn and the Sand Snakes in a cell, Doran Martell confronts Jaime Lannister over the plot. Jaime states he feared for Myrcella's life, which leads to Doran offering a peaceful compromise to end the tension. Myrcella would return to King's Landing with Trystane Martell taking over Oberyn's place on the Small Council.
Doran threatens Ellaria with death if she ever defies his orders again. As Bronn, Jaime, Trystane and Myrcella are leaving to King's Landing, Ellaria kisses Myrcella. On the ship, Jaime confesses to Myrcella that he is her father, which said she already knew and the two share a hug. Unfortunately, that family moment is short-lived as Myrcella dies from the poisoned kiss.
After the wedding ceremony was cut short by an attack from the Sons of the Harpy, Tyrion is left to pick up the pieces in Meereen. Daenerys left the city on the back of Drogon, her largest dragon. Tyrion, along with Missandei and Grey Worm, will try to restore order in Meereen. Varys offers his expertise in collecting secrets to Tyrion. Jorah, who contracted greyscale during a fight with the Stone Men, and Daario head north to find Daenerys who happened to land somewhere near the Dothraki Sea. She soon encounters a large Dothraki army where she is captured.
Arya Stark's plan for revenge against Ser Meryn Trant, the knight of the Kingsguard who served Joffrey Lannister, comes at the price of her vision. She broke her vow to the Faceless Men when she refused to become "no one" and held on to her past.
Heading Into Season 6
With the major beats out of the way for the "Game of Thrones" Season 5 finale, there are many characters who have unfinished storylines that will impact the new season. The Sparrows still have Margaery Tyrell and Loras Tyrell. Based on the "Game of Thrones" Season 6 trailers, this will lead to House Martell, backed by Jamie Lannister, bringing in a full army to demand the release of the the siblings.
Bran Stark will return after sitting out last season. Littlefinger was last seen setting up the imprisonment of Margaery and Cersei while securing himself the position of Warden of the North after the Bolton army is defeated. The Riverlands is expected to be another important part of "Game of Thrones" Season 6. Expect the Brotherhood Without Banners to return, as will Brynden "The Blackfish" Tully. Finally, the Iron Isles and House Greyjoy will be an integral part of the new season. Euron Greyjoy, Theon's crazy pirate uncle, will finally make his debut in season 6.