WARNING: SPOILERS FOR GAME OF THRONES SEASON 6 AHEAD
All hail King Petyr, first of his name! King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, and Protector of the Realm!
I never thought I’d be saying this, but a Littlefinger kingship seems rather likely at this point. Never has he been closer to achieving his true goal. Unless Sansa’s become much more ambitious than I thought she was, he’ll still be alone, though. He can’t have everything.
Of course, it won’t be a very long-lived reign. The moment Daenerys, with her swollen armies and hungry dragons, shows up, he’ll be toast.
What’s that? You don’t think he’ll take most uncomfortable of chairs? Sure, he has no claim, but lineage doesn’t seem to matter much anymore. Cersei has no place sitting on the Iron Throne, but you don’t see a little problem like lineage stopping her. For that matter, none of her children had any place there either, but everyone just pretended they didn’t know that. Robert’s claim was rather flimsy as well, but, again, that really didn’t seem to bother anyone. What really matters in Westeros (and in the real world) isn’t birthright; it’s armies.
Petyr Baelish has control of probably the most intact fighting force still in Westeros. Most of the other great houses have expended their forces in one war or another. But the Eyrie, led, technically, by little Lord Robin Arryn, still has around 20,000 troops. Sure, they probably lost some in the Battle of the Bastards, but they are still the strongest standing army. The Vale also has a fleet under their control, which would come in handy against King’s Landing, as long as there is no more threat of wildfire. Nominally, Littlefinger doesn’t control the armies of the Vale, but he has always been good at manipulating people and, let’s face it, Robin Arryn is not a strong-minded individual. Littlefinger knows how to play the boy.
Most of the threats against Littlefinger are either no longer in Westeros or have little interest in who controls the Iron Throne. Jon Snow, the newly appointed King in the North, owes Baelish his life and his crown, but he won’t direct his armies south with the threat of the White Walkers on the horizon. He’ll probably try to reason with Littlefinger to keep his military might up near the Wall to defend the lands of the living, but Jon’s not really that great at convincing other leaders to do his bidding. Still, Jon won’t stop Littlefinger as he leads his armies down the King’s Road.
The Greyjoys, in their constant failed rebellions, have an eye on the Iron Throne as well, but Yara’s already added her ships to Daenerys’ fleet and Euron thinks he can build another fleet and force the Mother of Dragons to marry him, solidifying his non-existent claim to rule the Seven Kingdoms. He’s going to get quite a surprise if he ever makes it to Daenerys and realizes that his niece already stole her from him, but that’s a different prediction altogether.
Dorne and Highgarden have also joined their ships to the growing Targaryen fleet, but their foot and mounted units must still be in Westeros. It would make no sense to sail them all the way to Meereen if they could just lie in wait back home. They’re unlikely to stop Baelish from taking King’s Landing, however. They would have no reason to get involved before Daenerys’ fleet arrives.
The Lannisters are the only real threat to Littlefinger in the immediate future (it’ll take some time for a massive fleet to make it to Westeros and the show has made it clear that the timelines in Westeros don’t exactly match those in Essos). Cersei’s insane plot to eliminate all her enemies also cost her the life of her son. She didn’t allow there to be any kind of power vacuum and immediately put herself on the Iron Throne. There is still the matter of the prophecy, however. Every other part of that prophecy has already come true. All that is left is the Valonqar, the little brother, strangling her to death. It’s generally assumed that the Valonqar is Tyrion. He certainly has enough reason to want her dead. But Jaime is also younger than Cersei, by a few minutes at least.
The look of devastation on Jaime’s face when he sees King’s Landing still smoldering as his sister is crowned speaks volumes. He betrayed his honor, his sacred vows, and his king when Mad King Aerys decided to burn the city to the ground. Cersei has restarted the Make King’s work. I believe Jaime will try to stop her the only way he knows how – by killing her.
With Cersei dead, the Lannister armies would no longer have a reason to stop Littlefinger from taking the throne. And considering the fact that Littlefinger is incredibly good at paying people to be his friends, the Gold Cloaks will probably already be his by the time he shows up at the city gates. In theory, he could waltz right into King’s Landing without having to shed any blood at all.
Either that or he’ll show up at the gates at the same moment Daenerys shows up on the horizon. If he does, indeed, get to the city in time to take the throne, he won’t hold it long. The Mother of Dragons is coming and she will take what she wants.