The Handmaid's Tale
by Margaret Atwood
The Handmaid's Tale Chapter 46 Summary
- The narrator waits in her room, for what she doesn't know. She feels rather peaceful because at least something is happening, even if it's terrible.
- Night falls.
- The narrator thinks about her options: she could set fire to the house, try to break her unbreakable window, approach the Commander, kill herself, kill Serena Joy, try to walk out authoritatively, go to Nick....
- Mainly she's tired, and none of these seem like good options.
- She looks out the window and imagines the night is winter. She pictures her predecessor swinging by her noose.
- Then she sees a black van coming for her.
- She thinks she should have grabbed some kind of weapon while she had the chance.
- Nick comes in her room. He tells her the van is Mayday and calls her by her real name.
- She doesn't know whether to believe him or not, but she has no choice.
- Two Eyes escort her down the stairs. She passes the Commander and Serena Joy. The Commander is sad but trying to keep away. Serena Joy wants to know what happened.
- The narrator realizes this isn't Serena Joy's punishment; it's something else.
- The Commander asks for a warrant. The narrator realizes this is a pivotal point; if the Eyes are not government, they'd have to leave. But even then she'd still be stuck where she is.
- One of the Eyes says they don't have it with them, but that the narrator been spying and that they're authorized to take her.
- The Commander, Serena Joy, Rita, and Cora seem furious with the narrator and think she's put them all in some kind of jeopardy.
- The men take the narrator out to the van and she gets in, not knowing whether she's about to be rescued or killed.
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