Lair of Tess. She's doing martial arts with a Spandex-clad instructor who is beating her ass down. He pins her arm behind her back and forces her onto the ground. "What is your focus?" he asks. The tiles on the floor? "True victory," she says. She gets up with no problem and spins around, trying to push down the instructor. He easily turns her wrist around and makes her gasp. She's got on a strange red and black workout suit. It's like a sports bra with a black tube attached below. It makes her look like a paint job on an '82 Trans Am. "And what is true victory?" Sensei asks. Syndication and a cut of the money from the DVDs? We hear, "Victory over one's self." But it's not Tess saying the words. She turns. Lana is standing in the doorway, wearing black pants and a sleeveless purple top. No more pink for this girl. "First principle of Aikido," Lana says. The instructor looks to Tess for instruction on whether this lawn rodent should be destroyed. "That'll be all, Terrence," Tess tells him. He exits the room without another word. Second principle of Aikido is not to feed the trolls. "The enigmatic Lana Lang. In the flesh," Tess says, wiping herself down with a purple towel. Purple, see? With the towel and Lana's top? It's EEEEVIL. Lana says she came to thank Tess. The Daily Planet has been quiet about Lana's return to town. It's a pretty shit newspaper these days, anyway. Tess says she keeps her reporters on a short leash. "Most of the time," she adds quietly. Lana just stands there. Tess lies right to her face, looking her up and down and saying, "You have just as much... presence as Lex said you did." Oh, fucking please. Presence? Are you kidding me? Lana stands there woodenly, letting her presence speak for her. It's dead silent. Tess says that Lana would have to have it to tame a Luthor. Wow, is this getting uncomfortable for everyone else? Tess really needs to calm down. Drink some Gatorade maybe. Her endorphins are short-circuiting her brain functions.
Lana says that's high praise from the woman in charge of the Luthor legacy. "He must have had a lot of faith in you," Lana tells her. Tess says it wasn't easy to earn. Lana steps forward and loses her friendly demeanor. She wonders how much faith Lex would have in Tess if he knew she was funneling company money into a project called "Prometheus." Tess flinches. Lana, still smiling, says that's true unless someone higher than Tess is calling the shots. Tess says nothing. "Lex is alive," Lana adds. She thinks Tess knows where he is. Tess scoffs and shakes her head a bit. She walks behind the desk and tries to play it cool, suggesting that Lana might be interested in a fiction section The Planet prints on Sundays. Yet another reason why the paper is failing. Lana says she used to be like Tess, protecting Lex and saying anything to defend him. "He has a way of turning that kind of devotion against you," Lana says. Tess goes to cliché-ville: "You don't know Lex like I do!" He likes tapioca and Bazooka Joe gum! But not at the same time. You wouldn't understand! Lana hopes she's right. She walks out of the room. As she rounds the corner, she opens her bag. There's a clunky device in there with a bright green light flashing, presumably recording major Luthor secrets electronically. Did Lana forget there are surveillance cameras all over the place in this castle? Lana keeps walking.