Many characters went their separate ways at the end of Game of Thrones, but Grey Worm and his armies of Unsullied and Dothraki will not get the warm welcome they are expecting in Naath.
Warning! Spoilers for the Game of Thrones series finale lie ahead!
At the end the series, Grey Worm assumed control of the armies formerly led by Daenerys Targaryen. With their queen dead, the freed slaves decided to leave Westeros, as Grey Worm and the love of his life, Missandei, once discussed. Before they leave, Grey Worm says that they are going to the Isle of Naath, which means they will almost certainly all die.
The Isle of Naath is far to the south, close to the mysterious continent of Sothoryos. In George R.R. Martin's books, the island is a paradise filled with fruit and ruled by an almost uninterrupted peace. This is thanks to relatively little intervention from outsiders, who cannot survive on the island for long.
In his companion book The World of Ice and Fire, Martin explains that Naath is inhabited by swarms of colorful butterflies. These insects carry a sickness called butterfly fever. Natives are immune to it, but according to Martin, outsiders can only survive on Naath for a matter of hours before they are infected, and then it is too late. Death is certain.
By the sound of it, Grey Worm did not know this about the island, and Missandei may not have either. Earlier this season, she and Grey Worm made plans to sail back to her home when Daenerys' wars were over. He pledged to protect her and her pacifist people with the help of his Unsullied. However, since she was snatched by slavers as a child, Missandei might not have realized that this was a death sentence for her love.
Naath was rarely mentioned in the show, and the deadly sickness there was never brought up. Still, for book-readers, sending Grey Worm and his men on this futile suicide mission was the final insult in a storyline that had already reduced them to unapologetic killers.0comments
Fans felt much the same about Grey Worm's rage in the end as they did about Daenerys'. The shortened season left little time to develop their descent into a violent fury, so the moment in Episode 5 when Daenerys burned the civilians, and Grey Worm chucked a spear at a surrendered soldier felt out of character. Things did not get much better in the finale, as we first saw Grey Worm cutting the throats of unarmed foes. However, with the show over for good now, fans are left to make what they will of the shocking conclusion.
Next weekend, HBO will air a feature-length documentary on the making of Season 8 titled Game of Thrones: The Last Watch in the place of the series. It airs Sunday at 9 p.m. ET. The next novel in the series is expected soon, although no release date has been announced yet.