Fans prepare to leap into new season of Game of Thrones
THE last time viewers saw Theon Greyjoy and Sansa Stark in Game of Thrones, they took a leap of faith off the wall of Winterfell.
Their fate is one of many cliff hangers set to be answered when the hit fantasy series returns to television screens around the world on Monday.
The two characters, who grew up together, were reunited in season five last year and together fled their common tormentor, Sansa's new husband Ramsay Bolton.
"They both set out of Winterfell with illusions of grandeur and things just spiralled out of control," Alfie Allen, who plays Theon, tells The Guide.
"He wanted to be Prince Theon and she wanted to be a pretty little princess."
Allen's character has had one of the most dramatic transformations in the series after he was captured and physically and psychologically tortured by Ramsay, who forced upon him the new identity of Reek.
"He's had this demise from basically being this sort of cocky, arrogant little lord to being someone's slave," he says.
"I've really played three characters in the one role: Theon, Reek and Reek pretending to be Theon. As an actor it's a joy. I don't think I'll ever get the opportunity to do a role like this again."
Footage released by HBO shows Theon and Sansa survive their fall. But their escape hasn't gone unnoticed and they are pursued by Ramsay's men and his hunting dogs.
"Theon obviously feels indebted to the Starks and like he needs to make up for what he's done," Allen says.
"When Sansa turns up it starts to bring back memories of something he used to be. It could get darker; it could get lighter (in season six). I don't know. We'll just have to wait and see."
Allen, like his co-star Sophie Turner (Sansa), has witnessed the show's explosion in popularity first-hand since appearing in its pilot episode five years ago.
"I remember getting the job. I was watching The Wire at the time and the prospect of being in an HBO mega show was unrealistic to me," he says.
"In a way it helped me get the part because I didn't think I would get it so I didn't put any pressure on myself."
Allen says fans will enjoy the new character Euron Greyjoy, Theon's uncle and the younger brother of Lord Balon Greyjoy, played by Danish actor Pilou Asbaek.
"He is fantastic actor, and there's going to be more of a Greyjoy presence this season," he says.
"There's one scene, which is very Greyjoy, that I'm very much looking forward to seeing. I don't like watching myself on screen, naturally, but I'm looking forward to seeing how it comes off."
Game of Thrones season six premieres on Monday at 11am and 7.30pm on Foxtel's Showcase channel.