Smallville – S1 Ep16 – Stray

A young boy called Ryan with a love of Warrior Angel comics and the power to read minds escapes from his criminal step parents after they kill a shop owner in a robbery. During his escape Martha Kent inadvertently hits him with her car. Shortly after at the hospital the Kent’s offer to foster him on a temporary basis after he claims to have amnesia. The next morning Ryan immediately makes a good impression on Martha and Jonathan by making them exact breakfast they were craving – bacon and eggs for Jonathan and pancakes with sugar and syrup for Martha. It seems Clark’s is the only mind Ryan can’t read when he proclaims it is ‘peaceful’ to be around him. He talks about his love of comic books and tells Clark the reason he loves the Warrior Angel is because he protects people who can’t protect themselves. Seeing how happy Clark seems around Ryan the Kent’s secretly wonder whether they should have adopted another child when Clark was younger.

Ryan’s step parents James and Brandy show up looking for him, claiming to be private detectives. They track him down to The Talon where Ryan was enjoying a day with Clark and his friends. While trying to find a place to hide Ryan gets himself stuck in a trash compactor and Clark manages to save him by exposing his super strength. After the incident Clark begins to think Ryan is faking his amnesia and investigates the location where Martha hit him. After Clark figures out Ryan has the ability to read minds he goes back to the farm only to find out Ryan has discovered Clark’s secret as well. He was able to discover Clark is from another planet by finding the ship he crashed to Smallville in. Ryan confides in Clark that his step parents have been using him to steal and abusing him when he refuses, he begs Clark to protect him.

Brandy comes to the farm under the pretence of working for child protection, she convinces the Kent’s as much and Ryan has no choice but to go with her as he is worried about what will happen to the Kent’s if he refuses. It turns out his step parents need his help to rob Lex Luthor and attack him in his limo while on the road. Ryan reads Lex’s mind to find out the account number and password to his bank accounts. When Ryan refuses to give over the password Brandy threatens to kill him and that’s when Ryan tells her James is planning to kill her and leave by himself with the money. As it happens he was right and as James kills Brandy, Ryan makes a run for it. When Clark catches up to them he makes good on his promise to protect Ryan from his step father.

In other news, Lionel makes Lex an interesting offer to work in Metropolis. There is also a nice scene between Clark and Lex where they bond over having a brother, Lex confesses he once had a brother named Julian who died unexpectedly when he was a child and says his mother was never the same after that. Lex offers Clark a form of parting gift, a foil which Lex tells him that every hero should have. After a visit to Metropolis Lex decides to decline Lionel’s offer as he questions his motives for making him such an enticing job offer. Lex thinks Lionel just wants him close to keep an eye on him, comparing his Dad to an Emperor afraid of his son being so successful he could lead his own army.

At the end the Kent’s say good bye to Ryan who promises to keep Clark’s secret. Ryan offers Clark a warning about Lex, saying that there is a lot of darkness in him that he hides from the world, to which Clark responds he likes to believe in peoples best side. We come full circle as Ryan, finally feeling like he is safe, gives Clark his prized Warrior Angel comics, saying ‘I don’t need them anymore, I have you ‘.