25 reasons we’re naming Sansa Stark the Queen in the North

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23.Her cynicism can pay off

Being a ‘good’ character in the Thrones universe doesn’t mean you’re soft by any means. Sansa proves this relatively early on in Season 1’s “Fire and Blood,” when Joffrey forces her to look at her father’s severed head on a spike. Although she still pleads with him and cries (who wouldn’t?), this interaction vaults Sansa into another painful life lesson.

Here, she manages to rattle Joffrey’s cage not once, but twice. She asks him how long she has to look at Ned Stark’s head, which is a rather cynical reply given the situation. Joffrey clearly wasn’t expecting her to say that, but she wasn’t done yet. She shocked him again by saying, “Maybe he’ll give me yours,” after he promised to deliver her brother Robb’s head on a spike. We can see Sansa beginning to break down and crack, and she’s saved from a real punishment after almost throwing Joffrey off the platform.

Though this scene was difficult for her, Sansa sees just how far her limits are, and what she’s in for during her time in the capital. Even the Hound, the most cynical guy in Westeros, has some advice for her. “Save yourself some pain, girl,” he says, “Give him what he wants.” Although she plays nice, the North remembers, and she knows Joffrey will get what’s coming to him.