Clark coughed as he opened his eyes and noted with relief that he was back on Earth, as he saw he was surrounded by trees. He looked quickly to his left where he saw Raya, who was looking around with wide eyes, as she adjusted to being out of the zone for the first time since Krypton had exploded.
"Are you okay?" he asked, as he let go of her hand, even if a small part of him did not want to.
"I am, thank you Kal-El," she said, turning to face him with a small smile. "I am correct aren't I? You are Kal-El, son of my mentor Jor-El and this is Earth?" she asked, as they both stood up.
"I am Raya and I am sorry I couldn't say anything back there, but I was afraid that if Zod found out that the son of his greatest enemy was in the zone, we never would have made it out," Clark responded, not surprised she had guessed who he was.
"That is understandable Kal-El," Raya said, once again looking around, pleased to once again being able to see trees and a clear sky instead of the sandy and rocky ground of the zone. "How did you find out about me? I doubt Jor-El would have sent you into the zone for me?" she inquired, turning back to him.
"That is part of a very long story Raya and as I promised I will tell you it, but once we are back home. We have a lot to do and we need to clean up," Clark replied with a small smile. "I take it you know about the sun's effects on us?" he asked, his smile growing.
"I do, although I have never been here before, however I have been on other planets that had yellow suns, which affected us the same way as they do here," Raya replied with a nod.
"Then follow me," Clark said, before he shot off, heading for the farm knowing the others would have returned there once it was clear he would not be back anytime soon.
Raya smiled before quickly following him, making sure to keep him in view. She was truly amazed to have been rescued from the zone. She had given up hope a long time ago of that happening and yet here she was on Earth, alongside the son of her mentor and now she knew why she had trusted him when they met, as well as the fact that she had felt a strong pull towards him when they had locked eyes.
They were some of the last of the Kryptonian people and it had long since been engineered into their DNA that should they ever face annihilation, that those who survived would do anything to keep their species alive and that included compulsory mating. Their people had been masters of genetic science and had come up with ways to ensure that in such an event the survivors would feel compelled to mate, to ensure their people lived on, no matter the circumstances.
She did not know if Kal-El was aware of this, but she would have to explain it, especially if he already had a mate on this world. She did not want to cause him any trouble due to what their people had done years ago to ensure their race survived.
Everyone looked up as the door opened and Clark stepped inside, dressed in some very dirty rags as well as being covered in muck. Lana shot out of her seat and into his arms not even caring about the state of him. As she opened her eyes and looked behind Clark she noted the young woman, who had entered behind him and was dressed much the same way. Lana smiled at her, pleased that Clark had managed to rescue Raya.
"Clark, thank god you made it," Jonathan said, feeling very relieved to see his son had returned and joined Lana and Martha in hugging him, also joined a second later by Chloe.
"I told you I would," Clark responded. "Everyone I would like you to meet Raya," he added, as he turned and introduced his companion. "She was my father's assistant before Krypton exploded," he added.
"I am pleased to meet all of you," Raya said in greeting. "I remember listening to Jor-El's tales of his time on Earth, as well as meeting your father Jonathan Kent," she continued. "He was convinced you would be able to raise Kal-El to be someone he could be proud of. Lara herself visited to see for herself what kind of place her son would grow up in and she returned feeling her husband had made the correct choice as she said she felt the house was filled with such a loving atmosphere," she stated.
Martha and Jonathan looked at each other not exactly sure what to say in response to this, so they just smiled and thanked her. Lana hugged Clark again so very pleased to have him back.
"We need to shower and get some decent clothes on. Mom can you show Raya to the bathroom and allow her to borrow some of your clothes for now?" Clark said, finally letting go of Lana.
"Of course, please follow me," Martha said and led Raya up the stairs.
"Well done son," Jonathan said, slapping Clark on the back with a smile. "We were getting a little worried," he admitted.
"I'm sorry dad, but we had to be very careful otherwise we may have attracted Zod or half a dozen other prisoners and then we would have never gotten out of there," Clark said. "I feel so much better being back. I hate that place," he said with a sigh, as he leaned against the wall and pulled Lana to him.
"How many times have you been there Clark?" Chloe inquired, smiling a little at how easily Lana folded herself against Clark, whilst ignoring the slight pain that she would never have a chance with her best friend.
"A total of four times, according to the memories I have," Clark answered. "Anyway I need to shower, then we'll head back to the fortress to see if Jor-El has come up with any new ideas to free Kara, as well as to make sure that no zoners escaped," he told them, as he reluctantly pulled away from Lana and headed for the stairs himself. "We then can fill Raya in on everything that has happened in the last couple of days.
Lex shook his head, as he placed the phone back on its hook. The doctors still could not tell him how his father had fallen into a coma, if there was another group out to collect the stones they must be highly connected and have access to some top of the line supplies to have got in this place without being seen by anything at all. The cameras had not even seen anything before going off line. He shook his head again. He was frustrated by this and then he headed to his car to drive to the Kent's, so that he could talk to Clark and Lana. He knew if his father was correct and Lana was back with Clark, that she was most likely at the farm, so he could talk to them both at the same time.
Clark began to relax after his shower, feeling much better now that one of the hardest tasks had been completed and hopefully, if he was lucky, he would never have to deal with that place again. He put his new t-shirt back on and joined the others back in the kitchen. Raya was sitting between Lana and Chloe, listening to them tell her about some of Clark's adventures, dealing with meteor infected people.
That stopped when they heard the rumble of a very powerful car come into their drive way, as soon as Clark heard it he began to growl, as he felt an almost overwhelming hate and anger fill him as he realized who had just arrived. He closed his eyes and tried to force it back down, but it did no good. The memories of what Lex would do in the future were just too strong and he began to head for the door, intent on making sure he never got a chance to do some of his more evil crimes.
Jonathan had been watching his son loose more and more of his control and he quickly intercepted him and with some help from Raya and Chloe managed to drag him out of the kitchen and back up the stairs into his room.
"Son, get a hold of yourself," Jonathan told him, keeping Clark pinned against the wall. "Remember what I told you before. Those things you remember have not happened yet. This Lex is not the one you now remember," he added.
Raya was a little concerned to see Kal-El loose his control so suddenly and wondered what exactly Jonathan Kent meant when he tried to advise his son. Whoever this Lex person was had obviously had a big impact on Kal-El's life and she was guessing it was not a good one, as well as being part of the story he had promised to tell her, once they were safe.
Downstairs Lana and Martha barely had time to react, as Lex knocked on the door, asking if he could talk to Clark and Lana.
"Clark isn't here Lex," Martha responded. "He said he had a few things he needed to do, before Lana arrived," she added.
"And I just got here," Lana added, wondering how Clark was doing in regaining his temper, never before had she seen Clark in such a rage and it made her wonder what he had not told her about the future, concerning the man in front of them.
"Oh well, I really wanted to talk to you both. There are some new developments concerning the stones. I think you both maybe in danger," Lex replied, a little annoyed that it would seem his father had been right about Lana and Clark getting back together. "Can we meet up later when you've done whatever it is you two have planned?" he asked. "It's important Lana," he added.
"I'll make sure I tell Clark when he gets back," Lana promised. "I think we maybe be finished by one," she went on. "We'll pop over to the mansion when we're ready," she stated.
"Okay," Lex nodded in agreement. "I'll see you later," he said before he turned and left.
Lana and Martha waited until they heard Lex race out of the drive, before running up the stairs and into Clark's bedroom, to see Clark on the floor holding his head in his hands, trying to calm himself down. Lana quickly rushed over and pulled him into her arms.
"Is he going to be okay?" Chloe asked.
"He will be, just give him time," Lana said. "You better fill Raya in on what we know so far. He is in no state to go to the fortress right now," she added.
Raya watched as Lana cared for Kal-El and she guessed she was his chosen mate. She seemed very strong and also seemed to share a deep connection with him and she was sure if anyone could help Kal-El regain control, that it was she. She allowed herself to be led out of the room and into one of the other bedrooms and then sat down and listened as Jonathan Kent began to fill her in on what had been happening.