Upon taking the mysterious box aboard the U.S.S. Jimmy Carter, Jesse's crew, led by an increasingly insubordinate Dietz, rebel against the lack of information being provided them, and take it upon themselves to find out just what is in that box they're risking life and limb for. It's a T-1000, the shape-shifting terminator, which promptly kills one of the crew and slithers off like mercury into the nooks and crannies of the ship. Anti-tin can tension festers into outright mutiny and the crew lay the boots to Jesse in the mess hall, with Queeg stepping in, killing Dietz in the process. Jesse tries to relieve Queeg of the ship, but Queeg says his classified orders override normal behavioural protocols, so Jesse shoots him in the head, and sends the sub plummeting to crush depth. Just before she abandons ship, the T-1000 coalesces in front of her and tells her to tell John Connor that the answer is no.
She herself doesn't get to talk to John Connor but has to relay the message through Cameron, who lets her no that the question prompting the response was "Will you join us?" Oh, and one more thing, Jesse: you were pregnant. You aren't anymore, though. Cheers!
John confronts Jesse in her hotel room, because he's known for a little while that Riley was from the future herself; little phrases tipped him off. He'd followed her, and he figured out Jesse's plan. After a ton of blah blah blah, he lets Jesse go without shooting her. But she's not out of the woods yet; Derek confronts her in the parking lot, all suavely leaning against his truck and listening to music. There is much talk of sacrifice between the two of them, with Derek reminiscing about his good friend Billy Wisher, who was actually Andy Goode, who wrote the program that became Skynet. "John Connor let you go," Derek tells Jesse. "But I'm not John Connor." Jesse runs for it, and Derek pulls his gun. He seems to be in the process of depressing the trigger, but we never actually see the shot fired, we never actually see Jesse die. It seems likely she's dead, but it's also easy to think this is a case of the writers allowing us to fill in the blanks themselves, while also giving themselves an out if they need to have Jesse alive some time in the future.
John's leadership is being forged before our eyes, and the responsibilities he will shoulder in the future are weighing upon him, so is anyone going to begrudge him crying in his mother's lap because of his dead girlfriend (oh, and also because he needs to save humanity?).
Oh, and John Henry is some kind of miniature-painting Dungeons and Dragons nerd now, but we can talk about that later.
So last week was such a gripping cliffhanger that we naturally open with Derek and John just sitting there in Unky John's truck, and Derek tells John he's sorry about Riley, who didn't deserve what happened to her, and John sullenly says that people rarely do, and I for one am having a really hard time telling apart mopey John whose girlfriend was alive vs. mopey John whose girlfriend was just murdered.
John asks Derek how long he could survive against Cameron if she wanted him dead. "What kind of weapon do I have?" asks Derek, like maybe John's going to say "a nuclear bomb" or something. "Your fists and your elbows and your fingernails and your teeth," says John. "Against her? Those aren't weapons," says Derek, who allows that John already knows the answer: "If she wants me dead, I'm dead." John agrees and says he wants to talk about something, like OH GOOD, MORE TALKING, and he says he wants to talk about the future, and Derek says, "Yours?" and John says, "Yours."
Meanwhile, Jesse's at a swimming pool, and there's no one there but her, and she's staring at a bulletin board that has all kinds of notices posted all over it, but also it has these weird random shots of families on it, like there's a family of five all wearing hard hats for some reason, and I can't think of anything I'd like less than if my parents had put up the family photo of that summer vacation when my aunt and uncle and my cousins came to visit and we had matching sweatshirts printed up. I mean, my GOD. But speaking now as a father? I think it would be kind of awesome to have matching sweatshirts printed up for a family vacation.
Anyway, Jesse stares at the bulletin board and then goes and crouches by the pool and runs her hands in the water, and we pan into the water which takes us back to the U.S.S. Jimmy Carter in the Pacific Ocean in the year 2027. And Jesse is talking to Dietz on the radio or however they communicate from submarine to little pod thing, and he's saying they have secured the package and he sends over video of it, and the chief asks what it is and all Jesse knows is that it's Connor's box.
So the little pod enters the submarine on top, the hydraulic doors closing rather too quickly considering they're underwater (oh right, time-traveling robots, never mind). And it takes Dietz and a couple of the other men to carry the package down some steps, and Queeg stands there impassively when Dietz says "little help?" and then Queeg lifts the thing himself to secure it in the magazine: "Authorized access only," he informs them.