These Theories About *Those* Adoption Papers On 'HTGAWM' Will Change How You See Annalise

Eric McCandless/ABC

When it comes to a show like How To Get Away With Murder, it can be difficult to keep track of all the secrets each character is harboring. However, no one has more secrets than Annalise Keating herself, though, Governor Birkhead has just been made privy to one of them involving some "adoption papers" that could evidently destroy her reputation once more. Little is known about what entails, but theories about Annalise's adoption papers on HTGAWM have been making their way through the internet ever since they were brought to our attention and could very well point to where the rest of this season is headed.

After realizing that Birkhead was playing her and had absolutely no intention of following through on her offer to create the Pennsylvania Fair Defense Project, Annalise did what Annalise always does and went to Birkhead directly to call her out on it. Birkhead tried to act all coy and innocent, however, as the conversation grew more heated, Birkhead began making threats of her own, warning Annalise that it'd be a shame for these alleged adoption papers — which she'd discovered during a so-called "routine" background check — to be made public just when Annalise's image has been restored.

So what are these adoption papers exactly and why could it be career-ending for Annalise? It's something that Bonnie appears to know about as well, which kinda rules out the possibility that it involves her baby. With that in mind, here are a few theories floating around:

Annalise Has A Shady Career Past

One fan, laurelnev, posted a theory in the comments section of TVLine's recap post, stating that it's possible Annalise used to be a "baby broker" and dabbled in black market adoption. Taking this idea even further, laurelnev wonders if this prediction could somehow tie into Gabriel as well. What if he was one of the babies she did this to? was the person in charge of Gabriel's adoption: "Having a baby and putting him up for adoption is not career wrecking; selling a stolen baby to a rich family could be," the commenter writes. It's an intriguing idea, though knowing how devastated Annalise was when she lost her own baby, would she really be involved in something as criminal as this?

Sam Had A Baby With His Ex

Reddit user veveguede theorizes that it's possible Annalise's deceased husband Sam had a child during one of his affairs and either paid or conned the mother into putting the baby up for adoption. Perhaps Annalise had a hand in making it happen. Maybe the baby turned out to be Gabriel who is out for revenge. (Frank did say that he's Annalise's worst nightmare.) Either way, we shouldn't put it past Sam to somehow still be causing problems for Annalise from beyond the grave.

The Wes Of It All

Fans area always looking for ways to still include Wes in the narrative, and perhaps now they're finally getting their wish. Reddit user shaigirl5757 suggests that it has something to do with Annalise keeping Wes from his father, Charles Mahoney after his mother's death. Is there more to Wes' adoption than meets the eye? Could this help to further explain why Annalise treated Wes so differently than the others? Was she trying to make up for numerous ways she wronged him?

Annalise Lied About Her Son's Death

Then again, there's always the possibility that Annalise's son never actually died and she gave him up for adoption. Given that we saw via flashbacks the moment Annalise lost her son it seems unlikely that this could be true. And even if it was, how would this end her career? Faking your own child's death would raise a few eyebrows, especially depending upon the reason she had for doing so, but the terror in Annalise's voice hints at something far more terrible that would ruin her reputation completely.

Viewers will just have to tune in for the midseason finale on Thursday, Nov. 15 at 10 p.m. ET on ABC to see if anything of these theories come to fruition.