Chapter 6: "What's To Understand?"

Later that night, John was lying in his bed. There was so much to worry about, all the time. But it seemed like more now. Before, it was just Skynet and all that came with that. Then it was Cameron, and how she could suddenly turn on him at any second. Now, he had to worry about his own soldiers going against him? He didn’t even have any soldiers yet.

But with all of this to worry about, he couldn’t seem to take his mind off of his biggest problem. What to do about Cameron. Sure, she was beautiful, and there was a definite attraction there. But starting something with her didn’t feel right.

Of course it doesn’t feel right, it’s not right. None of this is right.

But at the same time, he could see how it could be right. How it could be the only thing that made sense. What didn’t appeal to him was the thought of telling his mom. Or Derek. He knew he could keep it a secret for a while, but eventually he’d have to tell them. Or they’d find out.

John heard a soft knock on his door. He looked at the clock. It was 2:27 in the morning. He didn’t think it would be his mother.

Having a suspicion who it was, but not knowing for sure, he spoke softly, “Come in.” When the door opened, he knew it was Cameron before he could even see her. Only she could hear what he had said.

Cameron entered and closed the door behind her. John had flashbacks to when she had done just this before he had left for Mexico. Again, she was dressed fairly scantily in a pair of hot pants and a skin-tight top. She was barefoot, which was rare for her.

She didn’t speak as she made her way across the room and sat on the bed next to him. She lifted her hand to slowly brush the side of his face, over and over again. John could feel the goose bumps rising on his arm. He breathed deeply before speaking.

“What are you doing?”

As she spoke, she continued to stroke his face. “I saw Sarah doing this earlier when you were upset. I’m curious as to why.”

He thought about it for a moment, which was hard with her touching him. “It’s a soothing gesture. When somebody is upset or tense, it can help them feel better.” Why can’t she just stop already? This is getting unbearable.

“You need to feel better. You are tense.”

But this is what I wanted, right? He thought for a moment. Not like this. He lightly grabbed her wrist to stop her. “It’s okay, Cameron. I feel better now.”

She tilted her head to the side. “You are still worried, though. I can tell.”

“Maybe I am, but I don’t need you to soothe me. Not yet.” Not until you’re you again.

She smiled slightly, “Thank you for explaining.”

She sat there for a few moments before John realized she hadn’t gotten the hint.

“I should get some sleep, so you should go do what you do at night.”

“Okay.” Cameron stood up and made her way to the door. She turned to John before exiting the room, and he could swear he saw a look in her eyes, a look of longing or maybe sadness.

“What’s to understand?” John asked.

“John…” Mykah said hesitantly. This was going to be the hard part.

“Say it.” John demanded.

He knew. Or he suspected, at least. It was like ripping a band-aid off, she just had to get it over with.

“Because you were in love.”

“How?” As she had suspected, he didn’t sound surprised, just very direct. He’d be surprised later, right now he wanted answers.

“How does anyone fall in love? Emotions, feelings, messages sent to the brain. It’s all chemistry. She’s the only one you could ever be yourself with. The only one you could trust.”

John gave her a confused look.

“You told me so yourself, right before you sent me back. No one else knew. You only told me about all of this because I was coming back, and I needed to know.” John didn’t say anything, so she continued. “You don’t have to be with her. You don’t have to love her, but I do think you should reactivate her chip.”

He spoke now. “Why?”

“Because if you don’t, I don’t know what she’ll do next.”

John lay in bed the next morning. He didn’t want to get up. He’d only slept a few hours. He couldn’t stop thinking about what had happened last night with Cameron. She was showing more human traits. Just like Mykah had said. He knew he had to make a decision soon.

He’d suppressed his feelings for so long. Ever since that first day when he thought she was just a normal girl. Ever since she had unexpectedly caressed his neck as she passed by. Every time she would pass by in her underwear, or she’d come out of the bathroom with only a towel on, he had had to remind himself that she was a machine. That there was nothing else beneath the surface. She would never care for him, not without being told to. She would never love him.

It was probably the reason he’d gone to Mexico in the first place. Laying there, next to her in bed, her pink bra showing through her white, skin-tight tank top. It was too much. He even had trouble breathing. He had needed to get away.

But now he didn‘t have to get away. It seemed too good to be true. And he made a promise to himself that he would take things slow. Or as slow as he could. He would get to know her. The true Cameron. He had always suspected that she lingered there, under the surface.

And he was curious. To see the real her. Or at least, the more human side of her. He didn’t know what to expect. Would she be like she was when he first met her at school, or like he had seen her when she called herself Allison? Or were those just programmed personalities, and her real personality was something quite different? Or would her personality be the same, but she would just be able to feel emotions? He didn’t know enough about psychology to answer any of these questions on his own.

“I don’t even know how to--” John started, but Mykah interrupted him, knowing what he was about to say.

“I do.”


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