Tyrion Lannister’s track record for making wise predictions hasn’t been so hot lately on Game of Thrones. Yet actor Peter Dinklage apparently scored a bullseye when it came to figuring out the fate of his character in the final season.

When the actor got the scripts for season 8, he didn’t jump to the end to see if he survives like he usually does. “This is the first time ever that I didn’t skip to the end,” Dinklage told EW. “Why? I was probably terrified. We all feel we’re the leads of our own show. As the seasons have gone on, we’ve all thought how it’s going to end. Who’s going to be alive? If you die, how do you die? Ten years we’ve been doing this and it can drive you mad, because [showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss] don’t tell us and sometimes they change their mind.”

Continued Dinklage: “I had all these ideas in my head and a version of one of them is how it ends up [for Tyrion]. David and Dan have a brilliant version of what I had. If I use any adjectives it will give it away. But I love how it ended up. And how it ends up for everybody. They had a beautiful gentle touch with some and a hard touch with others.”

He then added, a bit forebodingly: “We’re so used to the standard formula of bad guys dying and good guys living…What David and Dan have done with all this is beautiful, painful, and lovely. It takes the show somewhere that’s dangerous and contemporary with what’s going on in the world.”

As the season opens, Tyrion is arriving at Winterfell as Hand of the Queen to Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke). He not only has to continue to act as her advisor but try to smooth over any rockiness between his queen and the Lady of Winterfell Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner), who also happens to be Tyrion’s ex-wife. Plus, he’s a Lannister, so he’s not exactly beloved in the North either.

“He’s definitely a diplomat,” Dinklage says. “How does he maintain his sense of self within that? He’s like a translator with his own strong opinions. How do you stop yourself from voicing that? Obviously, Daenerys and her dragons are nitroglycerine. He knows she’s going to make the world a better place yet he also understands her passion. He’s put his passion in front of himself sometimes and it got the better of him. He’s trying to figure out who he really is in this storm of negotiations. And where we left off is with the biggest threat of all, the [Army of the Dead], for somebody like Tyrion he’s not going to be able to negotiate with them. He’s not a fighter. He can’t talk them into peace.”

The actor also teased Tyrion’s reunion with Sansa, who he last saw at Joffrey’s disastrous wedding reception when she fled the scene, leaving him in a lurch. “I love those two characters when they’re together,” he says. “There’s something so sensitive about their relationship. For something so horrible and arranged there was a goodness to it and mutual affection in horrible circumstances. It was a marriage as a treaty, as a lot of those arranged marriages were. Though you hear of arranged marriages now working out. If it was given a chance maybe it would have.”

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Game of Thrones

HBO's epic fantasy drama based on George R.R. Martin's novel series A Song of Ice and Fire.

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