Chapter 1: "It's About Cameron"

A/N: This is a bit of an AU fan fic taking place during "Today is the Day, Part 1" and continuing on. Everything else is the same (it goes along with Jesse's story, Sarah's story, etc.), but John and Cameron's story is different. I also inserted a new character. I may do a prequel later, but for your knowledge now, she has been around pretty much since the beginning. She is from the future and was sent to guide John because he couldn't trust Cameron or Derek with a lot of important information, much of which is at the center of this story. I have plans for the character later, other assignments she's been given, but for now she's mostly a source of information. Also, please excuse the lameness of the tech and science stuff, it's not my strong suit.

Also, there's a playlist comprised of songs that kind of reminded me of what happens in the chapter. Check out my profile for a more comprehensive playlist of what I listen to.


Should he trust her? She’d lied to him so much. What reason would she have to tell the truth? In that case, what reason would she have to comply with his request to stay away from Riley? She often did things she knew he wouldn’t like. Then she would lie, and only when he found out on his own would she tell him that he didn’t know enough. Only Future John did.

He watched her from the couch as she moved from window to window. He estimated she spent approximately two minutes at each window. Not approximately...she never did things approximately; everything was exact.

Nothing in the past indicated that she was telling the truth this time. He still couldn’t help believing her. Or at least wanting to believe her. And now he knew something about Cameron he hadn’t known before, he just couldn’t decide if that meant she had killed Riley, or she hadn’t. He thought back to the conversation he’d had with Mykah last night.

Mykah knocked lightly on John’s door; it was slightly ajar. The door opened wider, and John looked up from his place on his bed.

“Hey,” Mykah started, “We need to talk. Can I come in?”

“Of course.” John motioned for her to sit down.

She closed the door behind her, and locked it. To John’s surprise, instead of moving to the bed, she headed to the bathroom door. She closed it and locked it as well.

She then made her way to the bed. She sat on the foot of the bed, Indian style, facing him. She looked serious.

“It’s about Cameron.”


John shook the memory from his mind, saving it for later. Cameron always had impeccable timing.

“John?” she repeated.

“Yeah?” John replied, still readjusting to reality.

“Our food resources are depleting rapidly. If we do not return to the grocery store in the next 14 hours, we will have used all of our substantial supply.”

“Substantial supply?”

“Yes. There are key foods that have the most substantial nutritional value. If we do not return to the store soon, all that will remain are condiments and herbs. I may be able to make soup from these. Would you like me to make you some soup? I could use ketchup and oregano.”

“No,” John said, a bit annoyed, “that won’t be necessary. We’ll go to the store.”

“Good. A ketchup and oregano soup would not have fulfilled you sufficiently.”

John briefly thought back to a point in his conversation with Mykah, but quickly left the memory behind. Not now, he told himself.

“Yes, it would not have fulfilled me.”

At the store, Cameron manned the cart. Sometimes it seemed like she thought he couldn’t do anything. But he knew that it was in her nature. She needs a purpose. And if manning the grocery cart was her purpose for the time being, then she would take that post.

He found himself entranced by what items she was selecting. Of course, she got all the staples--his favorite snacks, microwavable meals, coffee, and of course, pancake mix. But the other items she was selecting very carefully. When they had reached the cereal aisle, she had selected his favorite cereal, Lucky Charms, but then she continued down the aisle, examining every possibility. Finally, she decided on a box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch.

Then later, continuing down the frozen food aisle, they approached the ice cream. She chose a complicated chocolate ice cream, the kind that had different kinds of nuts, caramel, marshmallow, and countless other ingredients.

Now they were in the produce section, and she was examining each fruit carefully. No doubt scanning it to see if it was sufficiently ripe.

This could take awhile, John thought to himself. He found himself drifting back to his conversation with Mykah.

“Cameron’s not who you think she is. She’s not even who she thinks she is.”

“Okay,” John hedged, “who is she?”

“That’s…complicated. But I’ll attempt to explain it to you.” Mykah hesitated for a moment, then began. “Cameron was a Skynet experiment. One of a kind, as far as anyone knows. True, she was a high-level infiltrator, but she was also a result of the curiosity of Skynet. The curiosity of human emotions and psychology. The machines had captured many resistance fighters only to submit them to intense psychological tests, in an effort to understand them better. Eventually, Skynet decided to integrate the findings in to a new Terminator. The experiment was not to simulate human emotions in a machine, it was to actually make the machine human. Skynet was fascinated by the drive of the humans, and thought maybe it could win if it and other machines had the same drive. In order for the experiment to work, though, they needed a human. They needed a human brain to base the machine’s responders on.”

John interrupted her. “Responders?”

“Yes. There are electrical currents in our brains that tell us how to respond to certain situations. Everyone’s are different, so they needed an actual brain to base everything on. When a signal is sent to a certain part of the brain, it illicits tears and a feeling of sadness. They were able to copy this. Before they had inserted the new brain into the Terminator, they sent it to speak with the human it was based on. Afterwards, they inserted the new brain, a small chip placed in the main CPU chip. The Terminator still had the same memories, but now was able to feel and understand more than any other machine could. They had made the terminator to look like its human counterpart. The hope was that it would successfully infiltrate your camp enough to get to you and kill you. But when they sent out the machine, they didn’t understand exactly what they had done.”

“What had they done?” John asked.

“Essentially, they’d created a human. And as machines, they would never be able to understand what that meant.”

Cameron was done inspecting and selecting all the produce. He was surprised to see a box of strawberries in the cart. She usually didn’t choose strawberries, since there was never a box in which every strawberry passed her test. The first time they had come to the store, John had had to convince her not to open multiple boxes of strawberries and make her own perfect box. From then on, she hadn’t even glanced at the strawberries.

“Time to go.” Cameron said, breaking John out of his reverie.



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