Warning: Major, major spoilers are ahead for Game of Thrones.
The Battle of Winterfell in the latest episode of Game of Thrones, “The Long Night” proved, maybe once and for all, who’s the strongest Stark out of all of them. Arya Stark not only destroys countless white walkers invading Winterfell; Arya also literally kills Night King. Yeah, that Night King. With one single stab to the gut, she takes down the North’s most powerful foe and literally saves everyone (who’s still alive) from whatever tragedy might come next. In doing so, she also may have just moved herself to be the frontrunner for a very prominent, beloved Thrones theory: Is Arya Stark actually Azor Ahai?
Does Melisandre Know Arya Is Azor Ahai?
The prophecy states that a legendary warrior will basically fight off the night and restore peace to the land. It’s been assumed for a very long time that this “prince that was promised” was probably Jon Snow since everything throughout Game of Thrones has seemed to point to him. Then it was thought Dany might be the “princess that was promised” because she was suddenly growing stronger and the prophecy might have been about her all along. There have been other candidates along the way as well, but now it’s really looking that Arya might be the one to fulfil it in the end, especially considering her conversation with Melisandre (also, lol to once upon a time Melisandre thinking Stannis was the prince that was promised).
Let’s go back to Season 3 for a second, the last time Arya and Melisandre crossed paths. Just before Melisandre left with Gendry, she told Arya that she would “[kill] Brown eyes, blue eyes, green eyes. Eyes sealed shut forever.” After this latest episode, the blue eyes mentioned here actually refers the blue eyes of the Night King, which is just one of Melisandre’s predictions finally coming true.
When all seems lost, Melisandre reminds Arya of this. Arya has just escaped death with the Hound, even though Beric has just been killed. The group retreats to the hall at Winterfell, where Melisandre has been hiding out. Arya is pretty distraught over Beric’s death, but Melisandre informs her that the Lord of Light brought him back for a reason, and now it’s been fulfilled. Their conversation then turns to the eyes on Arya’s kill list, and the faintest smile crosses Melisandre’s face. She’s then the one who reminds Arya about telling the god of death, “not today,” and with that gentle judging Arya runs off for parts of Winterfell unknown.
Does Killing The Night King Prove Arya Is Azor Ahai?
Clearly, everything's just clicked in Arya’s mind that she’s the one who’s meant to kill the Night King, and she does it in spectacular fashion. That said, killing the Night King doesn’t necessarily make anyone the prince/princess that was promised — but it doesn't hurt. It’s also entirely possible Melisandre knew it was a Stark, she just identified the wrong stark — Arya, not Jon.
Reasons Why Arya Might Not Be Azor Ahai
The only thing keeping us from getting 100% behind Arya fulfilling this prophecy is that many things about her don’t add up. Arya wasn’t born under a bleeding star, or anywhere near smoke or salt, let alone hatched any dragons out of stone. But do you see anyone who was born under a bleeding star with smoke and salt killing the Night King? No.
Arya also hasn't sacrificed any of her loved ones yet to take possession of Azor Ahai's sword, Lightbringer. However, if you want to get technical, Arya actually sacrificed herself when she became “no one,” and went about her assassin training with the Faceless Men.
How Arya Killed The Night King Might Also Be A Clue
And if we want to talk about the dagger Arya used to kill the Night King, we haven’t actually traced its origin yet. It’s the same dagger that was used to attack Bran in Season 1, which was then given to Bran (by Littlefinger) in Season 7. It’s supposedly a Targaryen dagger that dates back centuries (Sam even saw it in a book at Old Town), and it’s also got a ruby in the hilt. Who’s to say that this dagger doesn’t have some greater importance in Westeros and isn’t some reincarnation or version of Lightbringer itself?
So while Arya might not exactly match up to everything prophesied, if you look at some of the smaller details surrounding her, they sure could stack up.
Unfortunately, until she actually pulls a flaming sword out of somewhere, we can't confirm her as the prince/princess that was promised. At the end of the episode, Melisandre removes her magical choker and rapidly ages until she dies, possibly taking all sorts of knowledge about the prophecy and the Lord of Light with her. With the darkness now defeated in the North, we’re just going to have to wait and see what Arya fights next — and if the subjects of this supposed prophecy is definitively revealed at all.