Does Yellowjackets Season 2 Episode 4 Confirm A Theory About Javi's Whereabouts?

This post contains spoilers for "Yellowjackets" season 2 episode 4.

The girls of "Yellowjackets" went looking for a miracle in the latest episode of Showtime's teen horror survival series, and the one they found out turned out to be a lot different than the one they bargained for. When Lottie (Courtney Eaton) and Natalie (Sophie Thatcher) left for a hunt that doubled as a test of Lottie's burgeoning supernatural abilities, the pair returned home without a juicy moose to share. Yet by the episode's end, Van (Liv Hewson) and Taissa (Jasmin Savoy Brown) made their own triumphant return with another, hopefully, less edible surprise: Javi.

Javi (Luciano Leroux) went missing way back in the penultimate episode of "Yellowjackets" season 1 when he caught the girls in the throes of mushroom-amplified savagery during Doomcoming. Warned to run from the momentarily predatory teammates, the youngest survivor followed orders, and we haven't seen him since. Natalie and Travis' (Kevin Alves) search for Javi has come up empty-handed, and with winter in full swing, it seemed like we might never see him again.

Natalie and Travis may have ignored an important clue

Except, Natalie and Travis didn't exactly find nothing in the forest, right? In the season premiere, the pair stumble upon a stump covered in greenery that sticks out like a sore thumb against the snowy landscape. While Nat acknowledges that the moss growth is "weird," the pair don't contemplate what may have caused it and instead continue their fruitless search for Javi.

Now that we know Javi is alive, the next reasonable question is: how the hell did he survive? It's been months since he booked it into the forest and he's clearly been changed by his time away. Taissa and Van have to chase him down to bring him home, and when he arrives back at the cabin, he doesn't even seem to recognize anyone. It's easy to believe that Javi was sustained by something mystical, like a forest spirit that seems to be shaping the experiences of the survivors, but there's also a much more practical explanation: he found shelter underground.

The moss-covered stump wasn't just a weird outlier, but a sign of life that Natalie and Travis ignored. The only way for it to remain healthy and green during the winter would be if it had an internal heat source — someone or something inside that was warming it up enough to keep it thawed and alive. We also saw the stump just a few scenes before, when Lottie seemed to give Travis a vision of a stump surrounded by candles. Plus, this isn't the first time a stump has played a major part in the story; in the final scene of season 1, Lottie, Van, and Misty (Samantha Hanratti) made a sacrifice to the forest by placing the dead bear's heart in front of a stump as well.

Could there be tunnels under the forest?

Javi could ostensibly survive in a hollowed-out tree stump if he were able to keep a fire going to turn it into a rather cozy hideout, but there's also the very real possibility that there's an underground dimension to the forest that the survivors have yet to discover. The hunter had a cabin and a plane, so it's perfectly possible he might have been a doomsday prepper of sorts, with an underground bunker somewhere nearby. Any type of underground tunnel or bunker would have to vent its warm air somehow; if the stump were atop an entrance, the moss growing there would make sense.

The bunker theory is one that's been floating around the "Yellowjackets" fandom since season 1, when Lottie was baptized by Laura Lee (Jane Widdop) and saw a vision of tunnels and passageways lit up by candles — just like the stump in Travis' vision. In this week's episode, Lottie doesn't return to the tunnels in her mind, but she does take an elevator down beneath the plane to an imaginary mall, where she runs into none other than Laura Lee herself. This hallucination, which seemed to be induced by near-hypothermia, dovetails perfectly with her season 1 vision. If Lottie does have the sight, there definitely seems to be something going on here related to stumps and tunnels.

Yellowjackets has plenty of mysteries left to untangle

Javi's reappearance gives weight to this theory, as despite being shaken up and possibly feral, he seems to have survived in one piece. It seems likely that, whatever's going on beneath the surface of the forest, Javi discovered it when he was alone. Given how threatening his teammates seemed when he left, the boy may have made the decision to stay hunkered down elsewhere for as long as possible to avoid them.

Even if Javi's reappearance confirms that the mossy stump was a sign of life, we still have plenty of questions, though. Was Javi really alone, or did someone from the group of survivors help him? Did he steal the bear meat and lantern that went missing this season? And what, exactly, lies beneath the brutal world the survivors already know? It could be something better than their current living conditions — or something a whole lot worse. The team likely won't know until poor, shaken Javi calms down enough to start talking.

"Yellowackets" episodes stream on the Showtime app each Friday, with new episodes also airing on Showtime on Sundays.