Tonight’s episode left off right where last week’s ended with Ned fighting the urge of his comrades to throw a needless tournament for entertainment while winter approaches and the world around him seemingly crumbles. The episode brought numerous characters highlights as we saw Arya (my favorite character thus far) become (at the ripe old age of 8? 10?) the determined, warrior princess she longs to be. And Catelyn Stark kept hidden inside the brothel in the hope of continuing her quest to uncover the mystery surrounding Bran’s “accident” up until the man she seeks walks right through her door. Brilliant!

If I’m being honest, I wish they would have killed him right there. Though, sure, Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) is not explicitly responsible for Bran’s accident, but I have the sneaking suspicion that he’s not guiltless either. While the cast continue their respective journey’s, one thing’s certain: Game of Thrones is heating up.

The first few episode set the perfect stage for the epic quest that’s unfolding — betrayal, lust, passion, murder, mystery — and perfectly molded the cast into the roles we so cleverly wait to turn, morph and entertain us each Sunday night. A role worth nothing this week was the addition of Samwell (John Bradley), the fat, wussy boy sent to guard the Wall along with Snow and his other soldiers. Whether it was his blubbering words or his shaky walk, Bradley added a charm to his blubbering and an instant intrigue in the coldest of places.

Along with Samwell was more from Petyr Baelish — sneaky, pesky, but ever vigilant. Played by The Wire’s Aidan Gillen, Baelish speaks the some truest words of the series after Ned apologizes for not immediately trusting him … “not trusting me immediately was the wisest thing you’ve done since you dismounted your horse here.” It seems that trust, along with the warmth, is fleeting fast.

And one could never forget Daenerys and Viserys — their clash in Vaes Dothrak proving to be a pivotal point in the brother/sister, I’m-Queen-you’re-not struggle for the ages. Literally. Though, something tells me that Daenerys’ right hand man, Ser Jorah Mormont (Iain Glen) might have more behind the curtain than in front. I can’t wait to find out. Where is home? Are he and Ned ever going to meet? Ah, the showdowns to come…