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Game of Thrones stars discuss their first on-screen meeting

‘He doesn’t expect to see such a beautiful young woman of similar age’

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Helen Sloan/HBO

This story contains spoilers from Game of Thrones season 7, episode 3, “The Queen’s Justice”…

On Sunday night’s Game of Thrones, ice and fire finally came together.

Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) and Jon Snow (Kit Harington) met for the first time in season 7’s third episode, “The Queen’s Justice.” And surprise-surprise — they didn’t exactly hit it off. Dany demanded Jon declare House Stark’s allegiance to her Targaryen claim for the Iron Throne while Jon begged for her assistance to help him fight the Army of the Dead — something she doesn’t believe even exists. Eventually, they struck an uneasy agreement, yet it’s unclear where they go from here.

“I predicted, like everyone, they would meet this season, but I don’t think I predicted it quite as quickly,” Harington told EW. “But then again, you’ve got to take yourself out of the mindset of the viewer. As far as Jon knows, he’s just meeting this queen he’s heard of and trying to negotiate with her — he’s not meeting Daenerys, who the audience has been watching for so many years. That helps with the surprise of it. He walks into the room and doesn’t expect to see such a beautiful young woman of similar age to him. Any young man’s reaction is going to be, ‘Okay…’ but he puts that aside, because he has to.”

Adds Clarke: “I had an idea it was coming this season, sure. It was fun to play — she doesn’t like him and she doesn’t believe him.”

RELATED: Hear the latest from EW’s Game of Thrones Weekly podcast 

It’s a meeting that showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss have been excited to unveil for years. “It was really fun to watch that scene and I thought they did a great job,” Benioff says. “There isn’t instant chemistry. He’s annoying and she’s annoying and they have to figure out how to make peace.”

Of course, as the audience has known since last season, Jon is very likely a Targaryen himself — and Dany is his aunt. Only Bran knows both sides of Jon’s parentage for certain, and he’s back at Winterfell.

One moment that gave Harington a bit of concern, however, was his scene with Tyrion (Peter Dinklage) on the cliff where he was wearing a long billowing cloak (the scenes were shot in San Juan de Gaztelugatxe in Spain). “It was a beautiful location with 50 mph winds and I was wearing a cape next to a cliff,” he recalls. “There was a danger of me being blown off! I’m not sure it’s the way I would have wanted to go.”

Fun fact: Dany and Jon have been shown together in-character before, years ago, when they graced EW’s cover:

More “The Queen’s Justice” coverage:

Showrunners on losing that fan favorite: Only character to ‘win her own death scene’
—  Game of Thrones actress on that brutal ‘worst nightmare’ Cersei scene
Our deep-dive recap
Game of Thrones actor on surprise Winterfell reunion

Game of Thrones airs Sundays on HBO.