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In the book and the show things don't go too well for the Hound. In both cases, he gets horribly wounded and asks Ayra to kill him. However, she does not. Why is this? What message was she trying to send? All that Sandor is greeted with is silence. I thought it was a tad bit odd since originally the Hound was on her list of people to kill.

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You may want to look at this: movies.stackexchange.com/questions/21300/… –  System Down Jun 20 at 23:25

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The message Arya was trying to send is that the Hound doesn't deserve a clean, merciful death.

In my opinion, this action foreshadows Arya's future path in Braavos:

She is trained in the House of Black & White, the temple of the Faceless Men. The Faceless Men call mercy kills "the Gift". Without her knowing yet, Arya is denying the Hound this "gift".

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Or she just could not bring herself to do it, because they had become friends. –  TLP Jun 21 at 7:43
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@TLP That's definitely not the vibe I got from the TV series, and not the vibe I remember from the books either. She doesn't say "sorry, I cannot do it". She doesn't look troubled at the prospect of killing her friend. Arya looks at Sandor with cold disgust. To me, it's clear she's thinking he doesn't deserve mercy. –  Andres F. Jun 21 at 18:24
    
In the books, it is clear that she it conflicted. One time she leaves his name off her list, thinks about it for a while, then adds it back in. I believe she says something like "You should have saved my mother" and then leaves, which I interpreted as her not wanting to admit to the weakness of not being able to kill him. The TV-show is showing Arya as very cool and callous, borrowing from the Mercy excerpt from The Winds of Winter, so its possible they went for that version instead. –  TLP Jun 21 at 21:37

In Chapter 74 of A Storm of Swords Arya tells him

"You don't deserve the gift of mercy."

There may be more to it, but reasons she gives at the time are

She never forgave him for killing Mycah, or for hitting her with an axe instead of trying to save her mother at the Red Wedding.

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I have only watched the show, but to me it is clear that she is conflicted in many ways about killing the hound at this point.

Firstly, she wants him to suffer, he killed the butchers boy as well as the farmer (who he nicked the silver coins from) and therefore she hates him. However, he has also been her protector to a degree and she likely knows that she owes him her life to some degree while at the same time being his captive. Lastly, I think she is still a young girl and while she has killed a few folks here and there, she has never killed someone who she has a relationship with.

In the end, I think she chose the easiest way out for herself. Letting him die in the wilderness by lack of action on her behalf.

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“he killed the butchers boy as well as the farmer (who he nicked the silver coins from)” — I don’t think the farmer died in the TV show at least. –  Paul D. Waite Jul 9 at 9:24
    
@PaulD.Waite Looking at it again, they walk off from the farmer, leaving him flat on his back head bloodied and he doesn't get up as they leave (or so much as move too much). I assumed that he was on his last breaths. –  Fluffeh Jul 9 at 10:23
    
sure, he certainly could be on the way out. It’s just not super-strongly implied that he would die directly of the wound he gets from the Hound. I think the Hound says “He won’t survive the winter” to justify taking his silver, implying the Hound at least thinks the farmer is going to die in the future, but from other causes. He doesn’t say “Eh, he would have died anyway even if I didn’t just kill him.” –  Paul D. Waite Jul 9 at 10:36

"It's pretty firmly established that she did have him on her list." – Monty129 Jul 9 at 0:14

I agree it was clearly established that the Hound was part of Arya's list, which is why NOT killing him was the only way to convey with certainty that she had removed him from it. Whether she feels he doesn't deserve her mercy or whether she simply can't bring herself to kill someone to whom she has grown close is far less evident. I personally believe she posses the strength of character to deliver mercy, therefore I suspect that, while she has developed an affinity for the Hound , she still harbors resentment about his past cruelty and is unwilling to intervene.

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I see her developing a code; almost like she's judge, jury and executioner all rolled into one little package. Her behavior is reminiscent of the Faceless Men from the earlier season. Perhaps in the end she didn't have him on her list, and thus couldn't kill him.

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It's pretty firmly established that she did have him on her list. –  Monty129 Jul 9 at 0:14

I definitely feel like she didn't kill him because they grew close. He's one of the first people to be on her list, and she has plenty of opportunities to kill him. Everyone else she comes across who happens to be on her list meets their demise. But she won't kill The Hound because he's not on her list anymore. Although, she doesn't feel like she needs to help him either.

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The Hound is hard to kill. Brianne had to "van Gogh" him before she managed to subdue him, and even that was by chance. In the books he dies from an infected wound, and not in battle too. Each time he told Arya that she has one shot, but if she fails he will break her arms, or whatever. That's a chance one has to consider. –  user24620 Jul 15 at 14:21

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