Spoilers for Netflix's The Witcher and Andrzej Sapkowski's The Witcher novels continue below. For more on The Witcher, check out IGN's Season 1 review and get a full breakdown of who's who, from Renfri to Stregobor.
If you've seen The Witcher episode 5, "Bottled Appetites," then you probably have one big question hanging in the air: What was Geralt's last wish to the djinn? Bad news first: no one actually knows.That unanswered question has remained unresolved since Andrzej Sapkowski first published his collection of The Witcher short stories, titled The Last Wish, in Poland all the way back in 1993. It's clear Sapkowski intentionally wanted the last wish to be left up to the audience's imagination, which is why he hasn't gone on record with a clear answer in the years since. But the good news is fans have had over two and a half decades to speculate on what that last wish actually was, and they have a pretty solid idea.Some context: The Last Wish story details the first time Geralt and Yennefer ever meet. He unearths a djinn and accidentally gets granted three wishes, the first of which nearly kills his friend Dandelion (in the show, Jaskier). Not realizing that the near-death experience is caused by what he says, Geralt goes to find someone who can help, and that's when he gets sent in the direction of Yennefer.Fast forward to the end of the story, and she is trying to capture the djinn herself to have it give her back the ability to have children (something she lost in the process of becoming a sorceress), but Geralt realizes this showdown will kill her. Geralt, who still hasn't used his last wish, says… something, which causes the djinn to leave and Yennefer to be safe. The two have passionate, fiery sex, and never stop hooking up and breaking up before hooking up again for the rest of the Witcher saga.This plays out largely the same way in the Netflix series, with one key difference. In the short story, Yennefer hears what Geralt's wish is, and is moved by it. In the show, neither she nor the audience hears it. Here's Yennefer's reaction in the book:
"'Wait,' she whispered. 'That wish of yours… I heard what you wished for. I was astounded, simply astounded. I'd have expected anything but to… What made you do it, Geralt? Why . . . Why me?' … 'I don’t know whether such a wish can ever be fulfilled. I don’t know whether there’s such a Force in Nature that could fulfil such a wish. But if there is, then you’ve condemned yourself. Condemned yourself to me.'"
It's not quite the same in the show. We find out in episode 6, "Rare Species," that Geralt left Yennefer while she was still asleep after their steamy hookup, and they've been on-again, off-again ever since. By the time they catch up this go-around, she has settled on a key realization: Geralt's wish somehow involved her, and it's the reason that they keep finding themselves being drawn back together.She's none too pleased about it, which is the same as she sometimes feels in the books. She is frustrated by not being able to differentiate her real feelings for Geralt from the ones caused by the wish, making her worry they are invalid.So back to the matter at hand: What did Geralt wish for? The one thing we know for certain is it involves Yennefer and is the reason they keep being drawn back together. It also was a wish that protected both of them from the djinn and its destruction, allowing them to live. Since this has been such a big outstanding question for so many years, several popular theories have emerged trying to piece together what Geralt's last wish was based on the context of the rest of the Witcher saga (which we won't spoil here).
Most Likely Theory: Geralt Wished for His Fate to be Bound to Yennefer's
This is the most popular theory, and the one you probably can take as fact. We know Geralt finds himself immediately enthralled by Yennefer in every version of this story, and feels compelled to save her. In wishing for their fates to be bound together, he takes advantage of a key loophole to protect her from the djinn: a djinn can't kill its master, and Geralt was its master when he made the wish.Their continued connection from there on out seems to reinforce this theory, on top of the fact that "destiny" and "fate" are key storytelling devices in the world of The Witcher — and key concepts that Geralt repeatedly fights against. There are a variety of versions of this theory that have arisen, including some that believe Geralt wished to have his death bound to Yennefer's, but ultimately the core of the concept remains the same.The Witcher 3 seems to enforce this theory, though that was made by CD Projekt Red and isn't considered canon for The Witcher's core story. (In the game, Yennefer actually goes on a quest to find a djinn to try to cancel Geralt's wish that connects them, ultimately so she can find out if her feelings for him are real or as a result of his wish.)
Disproven but Popular Theory: Geralt Wished to Have a Child with Yennefer
This theory is hinged on knowledge of the family unit that Geralt, Yennefer and Ciri eventually become, as well as Yennefer's repeated desire to be a mother. If this was Geralt's wish, then he also would have been using the loophole of a djinn not being able to kill its master to save Yennefer. After all, you can't have a kid if you're dead.By this point in the story, Ciri hadn't been born, but Geralt knew he had a child due to him thanks to the Law of Surprise. This wish would tie the three of them together, fulfilling Yennefer's wish in the process. However, according to user Rand al'Thor (yes, like the Wheel of Time character) in this Stack Exchange thread, Sapkowski has gone on record disproving the theory.What do you think Geralt's Last Wish was? Let us know in the comments below! And for more The Witcher coverage, be sure to read all of our The Witcher Season 1 episode reviews and why "magic has to have a cost" in The Witcher.
Terri Schwartz is Editor-in-Chief of Entertainment at IGN. Talk to her on Twitter at @Terri_Schwartz.