Game of Thrones fans have put a whole lot of time and energy into theorising about who will be Azor Ahai reborn. The main candidates are Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen, but a new fan theory makes a compelling argument for Jaime Lannister being the story's great hero. Yes, Jaime. Sure, he's done more than a few unforgivable things over the course of the series — beginning with pushing Bran out of a tower window — but he's been on the path of redemption for some time now. And that path could lead to him making a major sacrifice for the sake of Westeros.
Reddit user byrd82 has woven an incredibly complex theory about how Jaime could fulfil the prophecies surrounding Azor Ahai, The Prince That Was Promised, and the Valonqar that everyone should go read. Right now, I want to focus on the Azor Ahai portion of their theory though, because it feels like a potential game changer for the final season. Melisandre's been trying to figure out who will fulfil the ancient prophecy since she first appeared in season two, because the hero of legend is the only one who can stand against the White Walkers. According to the A Song of Ice and Fire wiki, the exact prophecy states, "There will come a day after a long summer when the stars bleed and the cold breath of darkness falls heavy on the world. In this dread hour a warrior shall draw from the fire a burning sword. And that sword shall be Lightbringer, the Red Sword of Heroes, and he who clasps it shall be Azor Ahai come again, and the darkness shall flee before him."
Now, Game of Thrones fans know better than to take prophecies at face value. That's why byrd82's take on Azor Ahai is so interesting. Rather than try to make Jaime's birth fulfil the prophecy, they focus on how his rebirth could be the key to him being Azor Ahai reborn. The theory points to the moment Jaime loses his hand as the beginning of his journey toward becoming the savior of Westeros. Byrd82 wrote,
"There is a single event that is undoubtedly the most important catalysing event of Jaime's redemption story - the loss of Jaime's hand. This is because I believe Jaime "Forges his Hero's Sword" (as phrased in AA prophecy) by shedding his "Kingslayer" persona. In order to rid himself of the "Kingslayer" he must first lose the symbolic representation of this perceived corruption – his sword hand. Jaime states, 'I was that hand' directly linking his character to his sword hand."
Jaime has been in the process of reinventing himself since losing his hand; he's been far more focused on reclaiming his identity as a knight and a man capable of being honourable. But there's one thing that tethers him to his Kingslayer persona: Cersei. The original Azor Ahai forges Lightbringer after three attempts by plunging it into his wife's heart. It's only through this ultimate sacrifice that he's able to make a weapon strong enough to defeat the darkness threatening the entire world. The Reddit theory posits that a mistranslation could mean that the prophecy is referring to Jaime's golden hand rather than a literal sword, but since Jaime is in possession of one the few Valyrian steel swords in Westeros, it's just as likely that he will fulfil the Azor Ahai prophecy in a traditional manor.
Ever since Cersei destroyed the Sept and everyone in it, Jaime's been more aware of how dangerous she can be. That's one of the reasons why he turns his back on her in season seven and heads North to help protect the realm. He's acting selflessly and honourably — as if he's a man reborn who understands he has a purpose that's greater than his love for Cersei. But the love is still there, which is why it would be tragic if he ends up plunging his sword into Cersei's chest to end her dark reign. In doing so, he could find that his sword is Lightbringer, the only weapon that can stop the Night King.
Like it or not, Cersei and Jaime have the most consistent love story in the entire series, and that's why Jaime sacrificing her life would be so meaningful. It would be the moment that secures his spot as one of the great heroes of Westeros, even as it shatters his heart. And that's exactly the kind of bittersweet resolution to a prophecy that Game of Thrones would totally go for.