Sovereign - Recap

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The episode begins and Jax rides, one with the road. Later, the guys head back on the road after a pit stop. A pick-up sees them ride by then pulls out and tries to drive the follow truck off the road. It succeeds. The truck flips, with Filthy Phil at the wheel. The Sons ride back and the Niners shoot at them and burn the truck. Jax races to save Filthy Phil in the truck. The Niners get away. They race to save what they can from the haul, stashing the crates full of drugs in the woods before the cops come. Back home Jax tells Tara to be sure to carry her gun. Later, Gemma wakes up severely hung-over in a room full of drugs booze and passed out women.

She then sees a man come out of the bathroom; she doesn't recognize him and pulls a gun. They're interrupted by a well-dressed woman. He's not a pimp, he's a "companionator" she says. He offers to call her a cab, and gives her the address in case she wants to call one herself. Tig, Happy and Chibs on the other hand wait with Clay, who's talking to Galen about the Niners' attack. In the corporate offices of Diosa the escort service, Nero reads about a second home invasion in Charming. Gemma comes down for coffee, they introduce themselves. At Piney's graveside memorial, Opie chokes on the lie of his father's death: that he was killed by the Mexican cartel and not Clay.

He still wants Clay dead. Opie warns about the effects of wielding the gavel. "I'm not going to turn into Clay," Jax says. "I'm more afraid that I'm going to turn into you," Opie says. Gemma comes home to Wayne Unser, she forgot about Piney's memorial. Clay is there picking up his stuff. She finds him in the bedroom looking for a ring; he's weak and hooked up to oxygen. He asks to talk to her, and opens with "I know you want me dead, that's why you gave Jax those letters". He tells her he'll never talk about her involvement in John Teller's death and he'll always love her. She starts crying and when he goes to comfort her, she shoves him off, easily knocking him over. "You don't ever put a hand on me again," she says.

Jax meets with the CIA guys, Romero Parada and Luis Torres saying he needs them to set up a meet with Damon Pope directly to try to fix things over his daughter. He asks what to do about Bobby, who knows Otto gave him up to RICO. Romero suggests he tell Bobby about his CIA deal, but the club can't know about RICO or the CIA involvement. CIA will get Bobby out, but Jax will tell the club the case over the Georgie hit fell apart. Jax knows there had to be someone else giving the DA new info about the gun deal. Romero tells Jax to keep the coke and guns running and he'll keep RICO off his back. Jax reminds Romero that he's keeping his CIA affiliation a secret, protecting him and they need each other. A car drives up and Bobby gets out. Sheriff Eli Roosevelt checks in with the club, asking about the running down of Veronica Pope.

The first home invasion was Lynette Brice, a club groupie, this morning Wade Steiner was attacked. He's a mechanic at the garage. Roosevelt suggests its retaliation, but Tig says they don't know of any beefs. Roosevelt quietly tells Juice that he expects to hear more about the retaliation. In an empty railyard, Damon Pope meets with his Niners who hit the Sons' truck. He had specifically told them to lay low, but they were acting on Laroy's orders. Damon walks away, telling his muscle, August, "no loose ends". August shows the gangsters a chopped up body in a hole, what's left of Laroy. Around the table, Jax announces the Nomad charter is disbanding so they have Frankie Diamonds, Go Go and Greg the Peg wanting to join Charming.

They vote them in. Jax announces he's asked Bobby to be his VP, he explains Opie is stepping away for a while. Clay then says the Lobo cartel did not kill Piney. "I did," he says. He says he went up to talk to him; Piney was drunk and drew on him. He says he had no choice. He blamed the Mexicans so the Irish wouldn't back out of their deal. Clay says he was going to tell Opie the truth, but Opie found out. Clay says he lied and said the Niners did it. Jax says Clay lied to protect Opie when the ambulance came. Clay knows they have to vote on whether he stays or goes. Tig on his part can't believe it. Jax talks to Clay privately, looking skeptical. They size up each other's motives; both claim they're just trying to do what's best for the club.

Jax says he kept Clay alive to preserve the Irish gun deal. The Niners minus Pope wait to meet with the Sons. Pope's muscle, August, tells the new leader, Darnell, to kill Jax, and gives him a gun. Jax, Bobby, Tig and Happy pull up for the meet and put their guns on the hood of the car. August tells Jax to work things out with Darnell. Jax asks Darnell what he wants. Darnell pulls the gun August gave him, and defenseless Jax stares down the barrel. Darnell pulls the trigger, but nothing happens. Jax beats on him until they pull him off. August claims he checked for weapons, and then he pulls his own gun and shoots Darnell through the head. "He didn't really want to be in charge anyway," he says. August promotes another lackey, Tyler.

August tells him to tell his crew the beef with the Sons is done. August tells Jax that Pope will reach out soon. "This is Pope letting us know that he's the one who decides who lives and dies," Jax concludes. At his new home, Juice commends Clay for coming clean to the club. Tig shows up. "I murdered an innocent girl," he says. He thinks Clay should have told him the truth. Tig gets a call that his daughter Dawn got busted for DUI, but there's a club connection so they'll let her go if he goes and gets her. "We good?" Clay asks. "I don't know," Tig says. At the station, two black women have come forward as witness, saying they saw Jax and Chibs shooting an SUV. Oakland PD just called, two more witnesses ID'd Tig as the man who ran down Veronica Pope.

Roosevelt realizes what's going on. Tig shows up to get his daughter at an empty rail yard, but instead an Oakland police officer cuffs him and chains him to a pipe. Damon Pope shows up. He says killing Tig would be too easy. It's the same shipyard where Laroy and Darnell are in a hole. Tig looks in the hole and realizes with horror that his daughter Dawn is also in there. But she's not dead, much to his relief. She wakes up when Pope's men start splashing gasoline on her. Tig screams and wails and apologizes, begging Pope to kill him instead, but Pope is determined for Tig to know his pain. He flicks his cigar in the hole and Tig is chained and helpless as he watches his daughter burn alive.

Pope tells him the detective will be taking him into county, but he should keep the "vivid" memory to himself or the same thing will happen to his other daughter. Tig vows to cut his head off. At Jax's house, Unser calls Gemma, asking to talk to Jax. He gives him a heads up about the warrant out for their arrests. Back at the railyard, the detective and another man figure out how to dispose of the bodies. As they're focused elsewhere, Tig slips his cuffs to the front, and then attacks the detective when he gets close. With the other man down in the hole, Tig silently chokes the detective and takes his gun, shooting the other man. Back at Jax's house, they debate what to do. Gemma thinks he should run so they don't get killed by Niners in jail.

Gemma in the end reveals that she knows somewhere they'll be safe. Gemma then brings Jax, Bobby and Chibs to Nero's escort service to lay low. Unser on the other hand is closing up at Gemma and Clay's house when people wearing masks break in and start beating him. One of them has a prosthetic leg. The episode ends at this point.