The preview for this Sunday’s episode of Game of Thrones teased the arrival of a second Red Woman named Kinvara. For several seasons, fans have been mesmerized and befuddled by Melisandre, the show’s resident Red Priestess and worshipper of the Lord of Light. Kinvara seems equally bewitching: “Knowledge has made you powerful,” she tells Lord Varys and Tyrion Lannister as the pair try to restore peace in Meereen. “But there’s still so much you don’t know.”
Details are sparse on the R’hllor religion — it’s uncommon in Westeros, where most of the show’s action happens, and we’ve only been introduced to two of its clergy. But the faith’s hold on the show’s major stakeholders is clear: R’hllor magic killed Renly Baratheon and resurrected Jon Snow. It’s also possible (and likely) that Daenerys Targaryen and Snow fit into the Lord of Light’s primary prophecy, which callsfor the return of a great warrior to battle the god’s enemy, the Great Other.
The GOT hierarchy of powers is large and always shifting. The introduction of a second Red Priestess (especially one in a different part of the world than the first) could further harness the faith’s hold on a new generation of royalty, the ones who might actually fulfill the prediction. Here’s a look at the mythology of the Red Women.