When season six of Game of Thrones premieres later this month, it will have moved well past where George R.R. Martin’s series of novels currently are, and it sounds like by the time the ten episodes wrap up a couple of months from now, most of the story will have been told.

Showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have confirmed in a recent interview that they’re mulling shorter seasons in the final two years, with season seven likely to consider of just seven episodes and season eight (which is expected to be the last) running at eight only.

That means we’re losing a good five hours – essentially half a season – but this is no doubt a much better choice than stretching the story out to the point the show loses its magic.

“I think we’re down to our final 13 episodes after this season. We’re heading into the final lap,” Benioff confirmed. “That’s the guess, though nothing is yet set in stone, but that’s what we’re looking at.” HBO probably aren’t too happy with that news of course, and programming president Michael Lombardo went on to add: “That’s my understanding from them right now, those have been the conversations we’ve had. Because where these narratives go, it feels like another two years to them. As a television executive, as a fan, do I wish they said another six years? I do. I’m always an optimist, and I do believe we will figure this out.”

Variety makes it clear that nothing is set in stone just yet, but it definitely sounds like we should expect the final two years of Game of Thrones to be shorter than what we’re used to!