Back at the table, Clark and Oliver are still passing the time in awkward silence. Clark picks up a dainty teacup in his enormous paw and takes a sip, which Oliver seems to find as amusing to watch as I do. "So!" Oliver finally says. "You save any orphans recently? Old ladies, maybe?" Clark says he stopped a bank robbery, which elicits a few sounds of encouragement from Oliver. "How about you?" Clark asks. "Anything new?" Oliver answers in the negative first, but then remembers a new compound bow he's been trying out that seems promising. It's so funny that this is smalltalk for them and so frustrating that the show doesn't have characters talking like this more often. It makes them seem much more real and relatable and worth investing in. Plus, it's got to be tons more fun to write than the usual reams of exposition and ponderous monologues about power/destiny/darkness that usually bog the show down. Sigh. Clark tries to talk about something more serious: "I know it's not my place to say--" "Then don't say anything," Oliver cuts him off. Clark pauses, then keeps going: "But after everything Chloe's been through, I don't want to see her get hurt." Oliver chuckles lightly, but points out that Chloe's stronger than Clark thinks. Clark doesn't quite look at Oliver through this exchange, but he seems pretty passionate about making his case. One of Chloe's strengths, Clark says, is that she sacrifices what she wants in order to give others what they need. Oliver keeps his tone light, but the discussion is starting to bother him. "How do you know this isn't what she wants?" he asks. Clark finally glances at Oliver, telling him not to take Chloe for granted. Sounds like he's speaking from experience. Oliver fidgets and looks away.
Kent farm. Tess stands in Clark's loft, hands braced on the window frame, gazing outward as if surveying her mighty kingdom of hay and fossilized cow patties. Zod comes up the stairs behind her, taking each step with ponderous deliberation. Or maybe that leather coat is weighing him down, even with his new super powers. "Your choice of meeting place is revealing," he says. "Even when he's gone, Clark rules your mind." "And yours," Tess says as she turns toward him. The backdrop behind her looks terrible. They should have just shot around the window if they couldn't come up with something that looked like the real outdoors. Tess says she wanted to meet here because Clark is the one thing they have in common. She presumes that Zod wants the same thing she does, namely a better world. Zod doesn't respond to that. He starts nosing around Clark's stuff, opening a cigar box that contains a stack of photos. He starts talking to Tess about how she "craves" a man who's her equal. "But everyone you've ever let in has betrayed you," he says, "and will never trust you." Tess thinks trust sometimes comes at too high a price, but Zod thinks obsession costs even more. This is like if a bad romance novel were set at the NYSE. They saunter up to each other until they're standing nearly chest to chest. "Come with me," Zod whispers. He invites her to go to Cyprus for wine and swimming. This tips Tess off to the fact that he sounds more carefree than his "usual, goal-oriented self." He assures her, in a husky voice, that he still has goals. She presses up against him and slides a hand up under his shirt. She asks him if he still has secrets and he denies having secrets from her. She stops diving for bellybutton lint and walks a few paces past Zod. When she turns back to look at him again, she has a gun aimed at him. She fires and he neatly catches the bullet in his gloved hand. "I don't remember you telling me you discovered your powers," Tess says. "How did you find out?" Zod asks, not looking quite as flirty as before. She says he's a soldier with a cause, he doesn't have time to go off to Cyprus unless he's won the war. "Your instincts are remarkable," Zod says. "So is your ability to heal," Tess responds with a glance at his tummy. She notes he was shot recently but she didn't feel a scar. She gloats about her awesome instincts. He advances on her. He traces the side of her face with his gloved fingertips, down to her jaw, and then grabs her by the neck. She gasps sharply as he lifts her a foot off the ground. Zod says he can't afford to let her share his secret. Moron, does she look like someone who shares? He gives her a little jerk and she whimpers. "What would you do if our positions were reversed?" he murmurs. She would enunciate more clearly, for starters. Suddenly, there's a small metallic clink and Zod looks ill. He crumples to the floor, releasing her. There's the telltale humming of activated Kryptonite. Sure enough, Tess is holding behind her back a small hinged container of glowing green crystal. Tess enjoys watching Zod squirm for a bit as she slowly gets to her feet. "In every relationship, one person stands," she says, "while the other one kneels." She grabs a helpless Zod by the lapels and warns him she won't be forced down again. "I wouldn't want you to be," he chokes out. While he's still grunting and gurgling like he might barf, she takes his face in her hand and kisses him. In mid-kiss, she flicks the Krypto-container closed behind her. Zod, immediately feeling better and fully assy once more, grabs Tess by the hair and pulls her in for another kiss. They start making out like horny, mentally unstable teenagers.