Chapter 5: Marca de Guerra

Chapter 5 “Marca de Guerra”

As people start their day with the aroma of freshly brewed coffee and a scrumptious serving of bacon and eggs, Sarah Connor bustled around Uncle Ben’s Diner serving early morning patrons and cleaning up tables.
“Your fiancé’s here.” A short and stubby woman said to Sarah. Sarah looked over at the table and saw that it was an old man with a beard.
“It’s Mr. Timms. He says he loves Uncle Ben’s Peach Cobbler.” She said to the stubby woman.
“He does, but before you were here he comes twice a week. Twice. Now he’s here every day.” Said the stubby waitress. Sarah just smiled at her and heads to the table where Mr. Timms was sitting.
“Good morning Mr. Timms, what can I get you today?” Sarah said beaming. The old man smiled at her.
“A plate of my favorite Peach Cobbler.” He said.
“Of course. How’s your grandson?” Sarah asked.
“He’s wonderful. That boy is becoming more and more like his father.” Said Mr. Timms delightedly.
“Your son must be very proud of him.” She said. The old man just smiled and said to her.
“Before you go, I want you to have this.” He handed Sarah a gold necklace with a bullet-shaped pendant.
“I can’t accept this.” Trying to return the necklace. But the old man insisted.
“My wife gave it to me. She said that it symbolizes the bullet that I’m willing to take for my country.” He explained.
That’s why I can’t accept it. It’s important to you.” Said Sarah.
“I see her in you. Your courage and your love for your son. Raising him on your own, just like what she did when I was not around.” Mr. Timms said. Sarah looked at him speechless. The old man smiled at her.
“Thank you.” Was all that Sarah can say.
“Now my Peach Cobbler?” He asked still smiling.
Sarah beamed at him and nodded.

Sarah and John are on their way to Agent Ellison’s house. As John drove, Sarah was firing questions at him.
“Can you please explain to me how you’re connected to Cameron? I asked her about you, she said she doesn’t know anything about the John Connor of this time.”
“She’s right. She doesn’t know me. The Cameron at your house is a machine. The one I knew isn’t.” John said. “It’s a long story.” He added.

Cameron is sitting on a stool watching John trying to finish decrypting Sarkissian’s hard drive. John looked at her hesitantly then said,
“When mom asked you to watch ‘John’, you asked which one.” Cameron stared at him.
“Why? Why did you have to ask? Aren’t we the same?” He continued.
“You are the mission priority. I don’t have orders to protect him.” Cameron said bluntly.
“What?” John was stunned by what he heard.
“John knew the possibility of having two John Connors at the same time. So he programmed me to choose the younger John over the older ones.” She explained.
“But what if Cromartie or any machine finds us? You’ll just, what, take me to a safe place then leave him to fend for himself?” He asked somewhat enraged.
“If that’s what I have to do. I can’t do anything about it.” Cameron said.
John felt fear and pity for the other John as he pondered whether Cameron will ever learn to value human life even if it’s not her mission.

Sarah flips the door sign to ‘CLOSE’ and locks the door. The diner was empty and the other staff were preparing to head home. Sarah arranges the chairs on each table. The owner of the diner was sitting at a table doing some paperwork. It was an old, burly man wearing glasses. Sarah approached him.
“More coffee, Mr. Clarke?” Offered Sarah.
The old man looked up at her and said, “Ah, Yes please.” And smiled at her. Sarah heads to the counter and grabs the coffee pot and walks back to Mr. Clarke’s table.
“I guess I’ll leave the coffee maker on for tonight.” Sarah said as she filled the cup. The old man smiled at her.
“I need to finish this tonight. My granddaughter is coming home tomorrow from New York.” He said to Sarah.
“That’s great. I’m sure you’re very excited to see her.” She said merrily. He takes off his glasses and rests his eyes for a while.
“We’re having dinner tomorrow night and I’d really appreciate it if you and John can join us.” He said to Sarah. Sarah was taken aback by his invitation.
“Mr. Clarke, I uh-“Sarah seemed uncertain on what to say.
“Call me Benjamin or Ben.” He told Sarah smiling, “I haven’t seen John for quite a while.” He added.
Sarah gave a feeble smile.
“He’s been busy.”
Ben stared at her and noticed that she looked tired.
“Sarah, you should get some rest. I’ll be here late, so I’ll close up.” He told Sarah. Sarah nodded and moved to place the coffee pot back at the counter.
“Tomorrow night 7 o’clock, I want to see that boy.” He said smiling.
“I’ll tell him.” She smiled back.

Sarah and John arrived at Agent Ellison’s house, but he wasn’t home. Sarah tried to call him on his phone but no one’s answering. John was peeking at the window.
“Who’s this man you call Sarkissian?” Inquired John. Sarah puts the cell phone in her jacket pocket.
“He bought a computer called the Turk. Presently it plays chess but in the future-“She was saying. “It becomes Skynet.” John said realizing something.
“Who built it?” He asked.
“His name’s Andy Goode. He was a former intern at Cyberdyne.” Answered Sarah sadly.
“We have to find him, he can help us.” Said John.
“He can’t help us.” She said.
“Why not? He can stop it.” John said fiercely.
“He’s dead. He died before I can tell him about the future.” Said Sarah.
John looked crest fallen and bowed his head.
“A few years after you blew up Cyberdyne, I thought we ended it. I thought we stopped Skynet. That we can finally have a normal life.” He said. Sarah looked at her son with deep sympathy.
“I’m sorry.” She said to him. John looked at her and said, “I’m not blaming you.”

A young woman inside a cab sticks her head out the window.
“How long will it take?” She asked the driver who was busy checking the smoking engine.
“I don’t know yet. If you want I can call someone to pick you up.” The driver said.
“No thanks. It’s not that far anyway, I’ll just walk.” She then grabs her purse beside her and steps out of the cab. The driver went to open the trunk and took the baggage out for her.
“I’m sorry ma’am.” He said.
“It’s okay.” She said taking her wallet out of her bag.
“Here.” Handing him the fare.
“No it’s not necessary.” The driver said refusing to take the money.
“Please I insist.” The young woman said. The driver finally took the money and said, “Thank you.”
She smiled at him then pulled the handle of her baggage and wheeled it behind her. She was just a couple of feet away from the broken down cab when a black 1968 Mustang GT went past and stopped a few feet in front of her. The driver stepped out of the car and walked towards her. It was a tall, good looking guy with warm green eyes.
“Can I give you a ride?” He asked smiling.
She looked at the road ahead, seeing that it was still a long way, said. “I’ll take that offer.”
He smiled and asked,” Where are you headed?” He then takes the luggage and puts it in the trunk.
“Can you just drop me off at the diner ahead?” She said, “It’s not that far from here.” She added.
“Uncle Ben’s Diner.” He said as he closed the trunk.
“Yeah. That’s it.” The young woman said as she walked towards the passenger side. She didn’t notice that the guy followed and opened the door for her. To her amazement, she was just able to say, “Thanks.” And stepped inside the car.
“Do you live around here?” She asked him as they drove off.
“Yeah. Just three blocks from the diner.” He said.
“Oh I see.” The young woman said. A moment of silence passed between them. The guy suddenly spoke.
“Are you visiting someone?” He asked.
“Yeah. I am.” She replied.
“Well while you’re here, you should check out Uncle Ben’s. They make the best Peach Cobbler in the whole world.” He said enthusiastically.
“Maybe I will.” She said to him.
“I’m John by the way.” He looked at her and smiled.
“Cameron.” She said and smiled weakly.

A luxurious hallway leads to a finely made Mahogany door. A man carrying a shiny, black Halliburton attaché enters the room behind the Mahogany door. Two men are already inside it, a scrawny man sat in a handsome leather office chair behind a desk. The other stands in front of him. The man who just entered placed the briefcase on the desk and left. The man sitting on the chair spoke.
“Once I’m out of the country, deal with the problem immediately. He must be eliminated so we can go further with our plan.” He told the man standing in front of him, as the man took the briefcase from the desk.
“When he’s gone, take his place, assume his identity.” The man sitting added.
“And the Turk?” Asked the man holding the briefcase.
“Give it to them. Gain their trust. Now go.” He said to him.
As the man turned to leave, his eyes glowed red. A decorative mirror on the wall of the office reflected his image. He resembled a very familiar face, the face of Derek Reese.

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