Through The Mirror Darkly
A Texas highway
Sunday, March 15, 2009
"Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature nor do the children of man as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing." -Helen Keller 1880-1968, Blind/Deaf Author; Lecturer
"Nobody always wins a fight." -Bruce Lee
The internet news feed had been specific. Sarah Connor, a wanted fugitive, had escaped during a prison riot, months ago.
This was not the events that Cameron had learned of from the future, nor the days she had lived through. The timeline had changed and much for the worse.
Sarah, John, and Derek all knew how to fall off the grid. It would be that much harder to locate them.
Deuce and Cameron had kept contact by cell phone. Both had already grabbed vehicles and started hitting a series of hard targets on their way back to California.
Cameron had texted, "1NG". Seven hours had passed.
Deuce had texted, "2NG". Twelve hours had passed.
Cameron had texted, "3NG". Eighteen hours had passed.
Deuce had texted, "4NG". Twenty five hours had passed.
Cameron had texted, "5NG". Thirty hours had passed.
To the human eye or to Skynet, the code meant nothing. However, whether sending the message or receiving it, each message killed a little bit of hope.
The messages each meant a time portal was missing. That in the current timeline, the resistance had never set up the mission return site that would allow the lost cybernetic pair to return home.
The when was only the first part of the problem. The second part was the where.
Skynet had figured out, or at least had bluffed that it knew how to adjust specific timelines. With that knowledge there was hope of going home. Without it, Cameron and Deuce might be infinitely lost in a series of parallel time lines each looking a bit like home, but not really being there.
More detailed checks over the next seventy two hours, further complicated things. None of the known resistance fighters were at their duty spots. It was as if they never existed at all.
Cameron finished a nine hour drive, pulling into a suburb at 1 am. She walked into an apartment complex that was aimed at the young and collegian.
Checking the address, she walked up to a ground level apartment door scanned from her memory. Like many of the surrounding apartments, the loud music inside let her know its occupant was awake.
Her knock was met by a series of music muffled obscenities. A young man answered the door. Cameron scanned the interior beyond, which was newly darkened.
As the young man leered at her and said some cheap pick up line that she ignored. Cameron detected a young girl, about 16, drugged to unconscious, in the room beyond. Cameron locked eyes with the young man.
Smiled a cheesy grin, after saying something he felt was flattering. Cameron ran a confirmation scan on the target.
Cameron inquired, "Louis Anthony Rhone?"
The man blinked twice and replied, "Yes?" He was calculating the meaning of her knowing his name.
He never had a chance to react before Cameron kicked him square in the stomach. His body flew like a ragdoll backwards and completely devoid of air.
Eyes glowing red, she jumped and cleared fifteen feet of room to land directly on top of him. The noise of the apartment's stereo and those of a hundred others completely masking the sounds.
Like a titan from ancient Greek mythology, Cameron unleashed her fury. The first hit to his face was for the John that saved her. The second was for the John she had just lost. The third was for Sarah. The fourth was for Derek.
The names and face ran past her memory. Her fists never failed to stop hitting until Rhone's form was reduced to a crushed, bloody pulp, ground into the carpet with broken foundation underneath it.
The rage cooled. She simply stated again, "How does it feel to be obsolete?"
With her eyes glowing a slight blue, Cameron walked back into the front living room. She diagnosed the young girl as being under the effects of Rohypnol. She would still be out for a few hours.
Knowing she had a few minutes she minimized the damage. She showered the blood off her clothing. She found the acid and clean up materials that she knew Rhone would have in his house.
She took a few minutes to pour the liquids on Rhone's body, as if he were one of his victims. Though Rhone would have been too careful to keep trophies here, Cameron set things up for the police to be able to ask the right questions, should they take the time to do so.
Shortly thereafter, confirming the girl was safe, Cameron anonymously dropped her safely off at the nearest emergency room. The young lady would never know how lucky she was...
Several hours later, Cameron was biking through a deserted stretch of desert road. Her cell phone vibrated.
She pulled over and answered. Hearing Deuce report, "I've located Derek Reese."
"Excellent, what are our orders?" Cameron felt a twinge of hope. The resistance had been located.
"Derek Reese is dead."
Cameron listened to the facts. She hung up the phone.
Still on the bike, she sat on the side of that desert road in silent shock, without turning the vehicle back on. Every thought, every fight, every conversation, and every moment she had spent around Derek came up in a flood of memories.
The invincible man was dead. A stray bullet to the skull had taken out the leader of the 132nd, the backbone of the Resistance.
Hours passed by before Cameron could will herself to move again. The sun had set and the sun had rose.
Random chance had done this. Cameron had spent hours calculating the damage, all while something inside her mourned in a manner she wasn't used too. Something that was just as alien as the emotions of others...
Derek Reese - Mad World by Rashawn128