Warning: Major spoilers from the latest episode of Vikings Season 5, "Hell," are discussed below.
In the wake of her recent lover's death, Lagertha pulled a disappearing act by the end of the latest installment of Vikings. Her location is now a mystery that extends as far as her son, Bjorn, but what does it mean for her future? Stary Katheryn Winnick was asked about Lagertha's fate, saying:
Well, we don't know where she ends up going, and we will pick up with her later on. But it was one of those interesting things. I even asked, 'Why is she leaving?'...But I think it does work for her, because she's now moved her whole life over to Wessex and has fought for everything, lost a kingdom, and now she has to figure out what's next for her and only her.
Lagertha will apparently be off sorting herself out for a bit. How long she undergoes that process is a mystery that Katheryn Winnick was not keen to clear up with ET. Vikings characters have been known to disappear for a while, but a protracted off-screen vacation for Lagertha is the last thing the show needs right now. Plus, the powerful character is not one to traditionally retreat.
It is understandable that she needs some "me" time with everything that has happened. Lagertha is a queen without a kingdom. Her newish love with Heahmund had been one of the few things that seemed to somewhat dampen that blow, but it's gone now.
Despite its brief span, their relationship left a lasting impression on Lagertha. So, with him gone, that obviously changes things. Katheryn Winnick went on to discuss Lagertha's dynamic with Heahmund, and building her on-screen rapport with star Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Winnick said:
I loved working with Jonathan Rhys Meyers. He's just such a talented actor, and such a deep actor and a complex person. And he's somebody who, his character also has a dark side, and a very philosophical mind and questioning his fate and questioning the gods and questioning the religion, and I think that's the true connection between the two of them, they're both in that same place right now. And the relationship did move fast, a little bit too fast maybe, but I think for her, she really needed to trust somebody in this time of her life, and she moved her whole family and life over there try to figure out the next move to come back to Kattegat. So it was hard to see Bishop Heahmund go, just because he's such an amazing character, and they had such a bond.
Lagertha's quick burning flame with Heahmund has now been extinguished, marking another loved one lost to one element or another. That is a lot of loss for one character to take on, and in such a seemingly brief period. Nevertheless, Lagertha's response to jettison herself away from things, is still a surprising one.
Unlike her ex-husband, Lagertha was not driven into shadows due to a lost battle, but it's rather a lost love that proved to be the final straw. A heartbroken Lagertha watched from a distance as Heahmund was killed in the battle fighting for Wessex. Adding to Lagertha's pain of losing him were his final words. Katheryn Winnick opened up about Lagertha's own reaction to his death, saying:
When she finally hears his last word, which is Lagertha, that really resonates with her. Her whole life, she's been betrayed by so many people, and she's never sure if she should actually trust Heahmund, and for her to actually see him in his last words scream out her name, really has an effect on her. Here's another person she got close with, and now is gone again. So, she ends up leaving.
Now the questions concern where Lagertha has gone off tom and when she will return. Lagertha is understandably shattered by everything that has happened to her recently. Heahmund calling out her name seemingly meant he was reasserting his genuine love for her in his final moments. So, that is pretty huge.
Heahmund was arguably Lagertha's greatest non-Viking ally in Wessex. He was the reason she decided to go there following her loss to Ivar. Without him, she is in an unfamiliar world without anyone to help her navigate it.
It may be better for Lagertha to lie low for a while and return once she has healed from it all. Hopefully, though, she'll return with haste, and her journey won't require a huge time lapse.