The Commander and Offred are playing Scrabble. It's their 34th game. They've progressed to flirting and drinking alcohol. He lets her win. He liked to look at her, giving her a fashion magazine to read because "some of us retain an appreciation for the way things used to be."
Fred is smitten.
June remembers meeting Luke. Moira asked him to look through June's photos because she was concerned her Tinder profile was making her chump bait. He was more than willing to participate.
Serena Joy takes Offred outside. She proposes Offred sleeps with Nick to try to make a baby. He's already agreed. Nick is loyal and he's been with them for a very long time. Forget about the Commander, she tells Offred. The relief on Serena Joy's face is overwhelming.
She tells Offred they'll "do it" this afternoon after the shopping. May as well strike while the iron is hot.
The handmaids are shopping when one of them points out Ofglen's return to Offred. Offred approaches. She's now Ofsteven. She says she's fine, but we know it's not true.
Ofsteven tells Offred she's too dangerous to be a part of Mayday any longer, and new Ofglen comes up to tell Offred to get her shit together. She was a street whore who has no intention of going the way of Ofsteven.
Serena Joy arrives to pick up Offred for the big event. This time she feels like she's cheating on Luke.
She remembers having tea with him. He asked whether she and Moira ever went through a gay phase together. He uses the term "in my experience" and she laughs him off with...his experience as a lesbian? In his experience as a college girl?
Neither of them have been sharing what they're doing with Moira. They're not even doing anything, but they feel kind of dirty just the same.
They get a hotel room.
She equates that first time with her first time with Nick, which is fraught with anxiety and Serena Joy is standing by. One moment is beautiful and the other is incredibly awkward.
I always imagined it was easier for the sperm and egg to meet in a moment of passion versus an anxious clinical setting.
The tryst between June and Nick was much different than that between the Commander and Offred. June felt something with Nick as he went slowly and purposefully until she did.
Ofsteven is at a house where her Mrs. cares for her, even willing to give up the ceremony so she can feel safe.
During Offred's ceremony, Fred gazes directly into Offred's eyes and runs his hand up her leg. She's pissed.
Offred reminds him Serena Joy could have her sent to the colonies or worse.
The Commander doesn't believe love is real. Lust was the only real thing with a really good marketing campaign. When she says love was real for her. The Commander's true colors come out with a harsh, "What did you say?" He then launches into a brief discussion about Ofglen and his version of compassion.
They took care of the problem. It's such a small one, truth be told. They only wanted to make the world better. Mission failed.
Nick walks in on her throwing up into the kitchen sink. He was just looking for something to eat. He says he couldn't say no when Mrs. Waterford asked him. He's sorry. Crying, she begs him to tell her the truth. Is he an eye? Yes.
In town the next day, Emily reveals her name and a bit more about Mayday before she makes one last stand, freeing June's mind once again. She's going to be as invincible as Emily, and she's going to start by taking herself over to Nick's place for some real, satisfying sexual pleasure.