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The Handmaid's Tale Finally Reveals What Happened to Luke

How did he survive?

Sadie Gennis

[Warning: Major spoiler's for the latest episode of The Handmaid's Tale below!]

Hulu's adaptation of The Handmaid's Tale just revealed the answer to a mystery book readers have been pondering since 1985: What happened to Offred's (Elisabeth Moss) husband Luke (O-T Fagbenle)?

As the cliffhanger of the previous episode revealed, Luke didn't die when he squared off with the Guardians to give June (Moss) and their daughter Hannah time to escape. Although, it turns out June did have one thing right about the encounter: Luke was shot. But instead of letting him bleed out, the Guardians load Luke into the back of an ambulance to keep him alive long enough to be questioned.

However, before Luke can receive any significant treatment for his gut wound, the ambulance hits an icy spot on the road and flips over, allowing Luke to escape with a gun and a few supplies. After wandering in the woods for a while, Luke stumbles upon a few items of Hannah and June's that were left at the scene of their capture. Without any clues beyond the stray stuffed rabbit and scattered papers, Luke is left with little knowledge of what happened to his wife and daughter, but he knows it wasn't good.

​O-T Fagbenle, The Handmaid's Tale
George Kraychyk/Hulu

Before he figures out his next step, Luke decides to rest up a bit -- a good idea in theory, but one that quickly falls apart when a group of refugees arrive and begin kicking the sh-- out of him under the impression that he's a Guardian (Luke had swiped one of their jackets for warmth). When Luke explains who he is, they kindly load him up into their school bus, stitch up his gut wound and introduce themselves as "an army brat, two strays, a gay and a nun," otherwise known as Zoe, Lila, Peter, Christine and a woman whose name no one knows. As Christine, the nun, explains, the group rescued the mute woman from one of Gilead's earliest training centers for handmaids, and she hasn't spoken since.

When the group reveals that they are heading north to Canada, Luke objects and insists on going off on his own to find his family. Once again, a good idea in theory, but not exactly the smartest move. That's exactly why Zoe brings Luke to a nearby church in which the Guardians had strung up all the locals who had stood against them. That's the fate that awaits Luke if he doesn't go with them to Canada, Zoe explains, and who would help June and Hannah then?

​  The Handmaid's Tale
George Kraychyk/Hulu

In the end, Luke sees her point and decides to join them. They arrive at the dock, but in order to buy his passage on the boat, Luke has to barter his wedding ring. But before both feet are even on the deck, the Guardians arrive and open fire, killing Zoe in the process. However, Luke and the rest of the group manage to get away safely and make it to our friendly neighbor to the north unharmed.

The episode then jumps three years ahead, finding Luke and the mute woman living in the Little America neighborhood of Toronto. It's there Luke receives a phone call from what appears to be a surviving U.S. embassy asking him to come in. As Luke walks the halls towards the meeting, they're lined floor-to-ceiling with photos of missing family members and loved ones, all of whom are presumably still stuck in Gilead, or worse.

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When it's finally his turn, Luke is shocked when the woman asks if he knows June Osborne. When he answers that June's his wife, the woman hands him the note June had smuggled to him by the Mexican delegate's assistant, a note which simply reads: "I love you so much. Save Hannah."

What will Luke do with the knowledge that June is alive and her request that he find their daughter? We'll have to wait and see, but we doubt sitting around in Canada drinking tea and wearing cozy sweaters will be on his agenda for much longer.

The Handmaid's Tale debuts new episodes each Wednesday on Hulu.