If you look back on Game of Thrones' epic, eight season run, it's hard to choose just one jaw-dropping, series-defining scene. After all, there are gruesome deaths, heartwarming reunions and, of course, dragons.
Indeed, for the dynamic duo, their sisterly bond—they played Sansa and Arya Stark—has transcended the screen to become a real-life relationship worthy of the throne. Their connection was undeniable from the get go, with Sophie calling them "pretty much best friends" from the moment they wrapped their chemistry read.
That gut instinct was mutual. "I thought Sophie was the coolest thing I'd ever seen," Maisie recalled to Rolling Stone. "I get why they do chemistry reads, because when it's right, it's so right. Like, we're best friends. And they could see that all those years ago, and it must have been real magic watching these two girls have the best time together."
Of course, sometimes their best time came at the expense of others. Or, at least, Thrones' crew, who they often pulled pranks on because, well, how else are they going to pass the time on set? "We tried to sneak a kiss into every scene we did together to freak everyone out a bit," Sophie revealed to Glamour UK. "It kept them on their toes, making sure they were following the script."
But with the highs came the inevitable lows. Sophie, 25, and Maisie, who turns 24 on April 15, have been open about their mental health and the pitfalls of growing up in the spotlight. After a day of filming, "if I felt really fat that day or if I felt like my face looked weird or I had huge zits, to be able to go home to the hotel room and sit there and cry with Maisie—it was the best thing for us," Sophie confessed to The New York Times. "I'm glad I wasn't crying on my own."
No, in a friendship like this, you're never alone. "Maisie is definitely my protector and I'm hers, too," Sophie has said. "I know if anything happened...she'd go crazy and protect me." And Sophie has done the same for her. "Whenever I'm like, 'I need help! This is bigger than anything I can sort out on my own,' Sophie is my point of call," Maisie echoed. "She really helped me through some messy break-ups and some friend break-ups."
Today, their friendship is forever inked on their hearts—and arms. The duo got tattoos to symbolize their GoT casting and the roles that forever changed their lives. "She's one of my best friends in the whole world," Sophie, who had Maisie serve as maid of honor at her wedding, previously told E! News. "With Thrones, we were always planning, from season one, like if we make it all the way through, hopefully we could all get a matching thing."
Now, in honor of Maisie's birthday, let's look back on the friendship that has survived Westeros and beyond:
This story was originally published on Monday, Sept. 16, 2019 at 3 a.m. PT.