The steady beeping of an EKG machine droned in the background as John sat alone and quiet next to a bed. The room was dimly lit and the smell of latex and antiseptic hung in the air. John ran one of his hands through his hair as he looked over at his mother lying in the hospital bed. What was once a strong woman now appeared to be withered away and emaciated. Sarah had become a shell of her former self thanks to the Cancer that had eaten away at her body. About half her original weight and staring at him with weak eyes Sarah slowly reached out and touched John’s hand with hers.
“John…” She said in a weak voice. “I want you to know how proud I am of you.” John felt a swell of sadness come over him as he could tell the end was near. Sarah continued,
“I also want you to know how proud your father will be of you.” John fought to hold back the tears. “You’ll make one hell of a leader when the time comes John. Humanity will always need you and you will lead them to victory one day.” A tear rolled down Sarah’s face as she spoke. John remained silent, partially not wanting to speak and at the same time not knowing what to say as well. Sarah looked at John and smiled for a moment,
“You have his eyes.” she said with tears still in hers. John looked at Sarah slightly confused, “Kyle's…you have his eyes.” A tear rolled down John’s cheek.
“John I want you to promise me something.” John raised his eyebrows slightly, waiting for Sarah to continue. “I want you to promise me that you will fight and survive. That you’ll never give up, that you remember that each day is a gift and what is to come in the future.” John nodded his head slightly waiting for Sarah to finish so that he could respond further.
“I also want you to promise me that you’ll always remember that she tried to kill you.” John’s jaw dropped slightly open from shock.
“What?” John said in an extremely quiet voice. Sarah now with tears streaming down her face continued to speak,
“John I don’t have much longer, but I want you to remember what they are. What they are capable of.” John sat speechless, his heart sinking deeper by the second as he leaned slightly towards his mother’s bed. John always knew that Sarah never trusted Cameron and at times had been down right cruel in her attempts to try and force her and John apart. But, for the last few months there had appeared to be an uneasy truce between his mother and Cameron and John had allowed himself to begin to believe their might be hope for a resolution to this issue that had always been there ever since the day Cameron had arrived. John knew that it was a long shot; but, he still had hope and now the words that his mother had just spoken broke his heart.
“John, you have to survive for humanity to survive. I wont be able to protect you anymore” Sarah said as she gave John’s hand a weak squeeze, “I love you John, and I want you to promise me that you‘ll always remember what she is…” John continued to sit speechless staring at his dying mother.
James Ellison paced back and forth nervously in the hospital waiting room. He looked over at John Henry and Cameron who sat almost perfectly still and Savannah who slowly swung her dangling feet from the chair she was sitting in. John had been in the room with Sarah for over an hour and James was relatively certain the next time he emerged it would be with grave news. James stopped pacing for a moment and raised his right hand to his jaw as he thought. While he and Sarah had never formed a close relationship by any means he always felt haunted by the days when he had hunted her as an FBI agent; the days before he knew about Skynet, the future, Terminators and all that was to come. He genuinely regretted his actions and wished there was some way he could make it up to Sarah. Just then out of the corner of his eye he suddenly saw John Henry and Cameron stand. He looked over down the hallway and saw John walking slowly towards them. James took a few steps forward heading towards John. When John got a little closer James began to walk towards him. He could see that John’s eyes were red and bloodshot and John had a look of grief on his face. When James reached John he quickly took John into an embrace,
“I’m sorry son…” He said quietly as he hugged John who did not speak nor return the hug. By this point John Henry, Cameron and Savannah had walked over to where John was standing. After James released John from the hug John looked over at John Henry who slightly tilted his head to the side as he looked at him,
“I am sorry for you loss.” He stated, John then shifted his view to Savannah who had apparently already begun to cry as she realized what had happened. John then looked over at Cameron. She stood quietly looking at him. Cameron felt quite unsure of exactly what to do. While she had dealt with human death before this was on such a personal level for John she wasn‘t quite sure how to react. The closest emotional response she would be able to compare this situation to was the death of Alison. However, Cameron also knew this was extremely different. The two stood quietly staring at each other for several seconds not speaking. There appeared to be no sound as the pair stared at each other and their was obvious tension between the two though no one knew exactly why. Cameron felt a swell of nervousness come over her as she began to ascertain that something more than Sarah’s death was affecting John at this point. Finally John broke the silence,
“Lets go…” He said quietly as he began to walk towards the door. Cameron stood quietly with an ever so slight look of sadness and confusion on her face as John walked past her towards the door.
John stood quietly in his room staring out the window into the night sky. It was well past midnight and even though he was exhausted he felt that he could not sleep. The events of the day haunted him constantly. Nothing more so than the last hour of his mothers life. John felt a plethora of conflicting emotions continuously running through him.
“How could she ask me that?” he thought to himself. Just then there was a quiet knock on his bedroom door. Before John responded he knew who it was,
“Come in…” He said almost to the point where no one would have been able to hear it except for Cameron. She walked slowly into his room and about half way across it, stopping about 8 feet away from John. She stood silently in the room looking over at him. John glanced back at her and then continued to stare out the window not saying anything. Cameron felt an array of emotions creeping over her, fear, anxiety, sadness, compassion, and remorse. However, Cameron began to feel genuine fear that John may blame her in some way for his mothers death, or that he may associate her with it in some way. The emotions continued to build inside of Cameron as she continued to stare at John while he stood silently near the window. Overcome by anxiety and fear Cameron finally spoke,
“I’m sorry for your loss.” She said. While she had uttered these words before and genuinely meant it, there was a different tone in her voice this time around. A certain sadness mixed with worry and concern. John flicked his eyes towards the ground still not saying anything. Cameron noticed his breathing patter change slightly when she finished speaking. It grew slightly heavier almost as if he was trying to restrain himself.
“Is he that angry with me?” She thought to herself. Finally, in defeat Cameron dropped her head slightly towards the ground and turned to walk out of the room. As she reached the door she heard John’s voice,
“Cameron…” He said in a whisper as he turned to look at her. She stopped and turned to face him. Their was silence again in the room as the pair stood silently staring at each other. John let out slight sigh and then began to walk across the room towards Cameron. She did not move and felt a slight sense of anxiety as to what John’s next words or action may be. As John got closer she could see his glassy bloodshot eyes and as John reached her, he threw his arms around Cameron hugging her. She returned his hug as a feeling of relief swept over her. John burred his head in her shoulder crying. And then he whispered,
The cold concrete floor of Serrano Point pressed up against John’s face as a tear rolled down his cheek. In his original timeline his mother had died as well but this time it was different, in so many ways. So much was changing in John’s past. Time continued to roll through John’s mind as he remembered the fondness between he and Cameron continuing to grow to the point where they were nearly inseparable; yet, nothing more than a close friendship ever evolved. Perhaps it was because in some twisted way John felt that if he never truly admitted to what he was feeling, it could in some way protect Cameron from the fate that seemed to befall everyone else in his life that he cared about. John continued to recall new memories of how he, Cameron, John Henry, James Ellison and Savannah lived and continued to elude Skynet in the coming months and years following his mother’s death. Then a particular time that no person on earth would ever forget came into his memory.