Disclaimer & Notices

Copyright: The Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles characters and concept belong to James Cameron and Josh Friedman. However, I own the plot and other characters.

Notices: This story contains violence and sexual content. Additionally, this story will contain grammatical or other errors. If you're feverish over the errors, feel free to privately message me about what you find otherwise, just enjoy.

Summary: Cameron and Sarah attempt another mission that costs several lives and leaves Sarah suspicious of Cameron's actions and programming. Sarah decides that Cameron will never understand the value of human life as long as Cameron is a machine. And for once, Sarah's wish comes true when Cameron mysteriously becomes human. Now will Sarah learn the value of machine life?

AN: Old story that's been sitting on my computer for awhile now. I started it for the Epic Proportions Challenge, but I just didn't get it done. I thought I'd post it and see what kind of attention it drew from TSCC readers. I may try to complete it. But I will say you've been warned that it may not get finished. Let me know your thoughts and enjoy!

Homepage: www . redhope . net

Started: August 15, 2010

Series: One Shot, #9


A Tin Heart

by Red Hope

Prologue

"Look out, Sarah!" the former Skynet terminator, Cameron Phillips, hollered across the dark warehouse.

Sarah Connor was running for cover, her heart boomed as loud as her boots, and she ducked as wild bullets were whizzing past her. She returned a few desperate shots at her enemy, but she was out matched and out gunned. She gave a low cry when her next step sent her into a tailspin thanks to the black pool of water. Suddenly her world went into a crazed spin until the black ceiling overhead was briefly visible.

Cameron was marching forward, arms extended, and she systemically fired her Glocks at the targets hidden in the darkness. But she could see their hiding spots thanks to her thermal imaging. Yet she stopped short when she saw Sarah become airborne in front of three hidden men. Cameron couldn't save Sarah Connor from her fall.

There was a sharp smack when Sarah's skull connected with the concrete floor. She groaned heavily, yet her lungs gasped for air after they were forcefully emptied. She found herself removed from her body, and she couldn't make her legs work. Her head loosely rolled to the left, and her swimming vision made out the man sneaking up behind Cameron.

Sarah tried to give a yell to the terminator yet her tongue and lips could not form the word. She was numb and her brain without control over her body. She merely watched in horror as the man raised some bright, metal bar.

Cameron had sensed the human behind her. She knew something was wrong when the others stopped firing on her. She instantly spun on her heels, dropped her right Glock, and raised her hand when she caught the swinging object coming at her head.

The man yelled powerfully and put all his might into the swing after his gloved hands flexed for comfort. Suddenly his metal bar was stopped harshly by the young woman's great strength.

Cameron held tightly to the softly glowing bar, and she cut her murky eyes to the human. She tilted her head when he suddenly grinned at her.

The man hastily lifted his right index finger up and pushed a hidden button. Instantly the metal bar lit up the warehouse, and everybody was forced to shield their eyes, except for Cameron.

Sarah felt her heart fall as her only ally and protector was electrocuted. She tried screaming and tried making her body respond to her feverish commands. But she remained helpless and the water under her head started growing redder.

Slowly Cameron's grip on the metal bar faltered then her knees buckled after a few seconds. Next her left Glock fell from her hand, and she crashed to her knees, which caused an echoed through the building. Finally the powerful terminator collapsed to the floor and became a lifeless ragdoll, her eyes shut.

The warehouse darkened again now that the electricity in the bar was no longer active. The man was amazed and stared at the unmoving machine at his feet. For good measure, he tapped her and there was nothing.

"Quickly, we only have so much time!" a man barked out from his hiding spot. He and many others swarmed both the fallen terminator and fallen human.

Sarah discovered her voice again and yelled, "Cameron!" There were suddenly hands all over her. "No! No!" She was fueled by fear and adrenaline. "Cameron!" She managed a weak kick when somebody grabbed her ankle. "You fucking bastards!"

"Caaameron!" Sarah's rage echoed through the warehouse but there was nobody to care.

"Hurry!" another man snapped. He and five others were working to secure the terminator. They were using something to lock down her arms and feet that looked futuristic. Then one man suddenly revealed a bright, glowing red needle and brought it near the terminator's neck.

"What the fuck are you doing to her?" Sarah snarled. She started struggling against the men, who were dragging her past Cameron. She managed a stronger kick this time and sent one man towards the guy with the needle.

"Damn it," the man with the needle hissed. He shoved his comrade back towards Sarah Connor. "Get her under control, idiot." He turned back to the terminator and brought the needle near her neck. He weakly judged the insertion point then jammed the tip into the terminator's neck. He started pushing the bright liquid through the needle. But three-quarters of the way through, the terminator's neck jerked and made him stop. He stiffened and peered up into black eyes.

Cameron suddenly shot out her left arm across her body and grabbed the man's wrist with the needle. She had no idea what it was, but she didn't like it and threw the man away which caused the needle to fall out from her neck onto the floor. She now had the four humans jumping all over her, and she fought them off easily.

"Get her out of here!" He and his comrades rushed to get Sarah Connor away. But a strong hand on his shoulder quickly tore him off Sarah's ankles, and he went sailing through the warehouse until he smashed into an I-beam.

One of the two remaining men rushed the terminator but was brutally punched in the face. He crumbled to the floor and struggled to keep breathing for life.

The last man standing thought fast and took Sarah Connor into his arm. He adjusted her as a shield against the machine, and he retrieved his gun.

Sarah sensed the barrel pressed into her temple. She dug her nails into the enemy's covered arm. She opened her eyes and gazed at the terminator only a few feet in front of her.

"Come closer, and I'll shoot her brains out." His sweaty hand tightened on the handle.

Cameron stayed calm other than her right hand curling into a fist because a twitch started in her fingers. She lowered her eyes to Sarah and noted the dark blood oozing from her temple. "Release her," she ordered in monotone.

But Sarah could taste the hidden danger in the terminator's voice. Overtime she'd learned the subtle tones in the terminator. This was a very dangerous game, especially for this man.

"I don't think so." The man took a few steps back, but the terminator followed him. "Stay back!" he hotly yelled and pressed the gun harder into Sarah's head. "I'm not fucking with you!"

Sarah began feeling the shake in her body. Yet she forced her mind to focus on the terminator. "Listen to him, Cameron." Her boots began dragging against the concrete as she was hauled further away from her protector. "I can handle myself," she reminded Cameron.

"Shut up," the man snapped at Sarah.

The terminator wanted to tempt another step when the humans were getting further away. But she stayed rooted and watched them like a hawk as they neared the side door.

The man came to the closed door and edged closer to the knob. "Open the fuckin' door," he ordered.

Sarah cringed when the gun dug into her skin. She tried reaching for the knob and found it the most difficult task.

"Hurry!" The man's patience was almost gone. He feared for his life and knew this woman was his only ticket to survival.

Sarah grounded her teeth but finally had the knob in her hand. She started opening it and hissed from the pain it caused her.

Cameron softly shifted but the man's glare was back on her. She went still and waited for her opening.

"You do not move an inch," he ordered, "until a minute after you hear the van pull away." He tightened his arm across Sarah's already fragile chest. "Or she'll be dead."

Again Sarah was dragged away and into a hidden drive to the warehouse's rear entrance. She was greeted by soft rain drops in the late, cool night. She then was forced to open a van door and was promptly tossed into it. She barely managed to breathe much less gaze about the empty interior of the van.

The frantic man hopped into the driver's seat, started the van, and slammed on the gas. He was thankful the van was already pointed down the drive. He sped down the wet drive and aimed straight for the chained gates. Some tension receded from him until a loud boom came from on top of the van. He nearly lost control of the van because of the fright.

Sarah was tossed to the right then left and her already injured body took more damage. She whimpered softly and nearly blacked out again. She knew what'd happened, but she could do little when the man opened fired at the roof of the van.

Repeated shots rang out then the van launched into the gate, which flung over the top of the van. That did nothing to rid of the terminator, who had dug her hands into the roof of the van. She was on the passenger's side and now tore off the passenger's door. She tossed the door away then swiftly swung under and into the van.

The man was shocked to find the terminator in the passenger seat. He feverishly fired his last three shots at her and barely kept control of the van.

Cameron took the shots without a flinch. She then lunged for him and had him by the throat, finally. She glanced once out of the front window and saw they were about to hit a parked tractor trailer in the parking lot in about fifteen seconds. She worked fast and sharply threw the man out of the shut window.

He cried out as he slammed into the pavement and glass showered him before the rain hit him. He was in agony and struggled to breathe.

Cameron got her foot on the brake and applied as much pressure as a strong human. She grabbed the wheel and started spinning it as the trailer grew increasingly larger. Her ears rang with Sarah's scream.

Sarah desperately attempted to hold onto the floor, but it was hopeless as she was tossed like a doll. She felt a protruding nail claw through her left arm as she rolled and then slammed into the side. Her scream didn't stop until the van's screeching wheels went silent.

Cameron was gripping the steering wheel with both hands. She stared directly out the front window and blinked after she processed it'd all gone peaceful. Then the wiper blades' soft scrape across the glass made her refocus, and she looked away from her view of the trailer's side. Cameron put the van in park, twisted in her seat and hastily went to the human.

Sarah didn't bother holding back a few tears because the burning pain in her body was so great. But she was alive, somehow. She opened her eyes and found the terminator's stoic features above her. She never thought she'd be so happy to see a terminator.

"You are seriously injured. Do not move." Cameron was visually inspecting Sarah from head to toe then gently pressed her fingertips into Sarah's neck.

Sarah was breathing hard and closed her eyes. There was no way in Hell she was going to be moving anytime soon. She sensed the last of her strength depleting her. She whispered, "Cameron…"

The terminator looked up to the human's bloody face.

"We have to finish… it." Sarah wanted to go home and forget this night. She wanted to see her son. But they were here for an important reason.

"I will take care of it," Cameron promised. She started reaching for the human.

Sarah weakly grabbed the terminator's wrist. "I can't…" She rolled her head away from Cameron's beautiful yet dirtied features. "I can't..." She lost her words as the pain set in deeper.

"It is okay, Sarah," Cameron whispered.

Sarah swore the terminator's voice was so sweet, and it called to her. She followed it, away from her body. She gave into the dark world that pulled at her.

Cameron observed how the human went unconscious most likely from the excessive pain. She studied how Sarah Connor laid resting and most likely finding a waiting nightmare. Again, she scanned all the obvious injuries, and she suspected many more under the clothes. Cameron's usual blank expression now broke under a vague sneer that she must have learned from a human.

Cameron didn't dare move Sarah. She instead quickly turned on her boots, rose up into a hunch, and kicked out the driver's door. She jumped out and pinpointed the man's fallen position. She walked with purpose towards him and her hand went to the back of her jeans' waistband. She revealed her third, loaded Glock and went for him.

The man saw the young woman coming for him. He crawled away a few feet and even screamed until the shadow fell over him. He rolled his head back and gazed up at the terminator, who regarded him with minor interest.

Cameron pointed her Glock at him and tilted her head. She had cold eyes and the only sign of emotion was the faint twitch in her left hand. She saw he was about to say something, and she gave him no chance. She pulled the trigger.

The man went slump against the pavement. Some of his brain matter was sprayed over the pavement. He distantly stared across the parking lot as life faded away from his body.

Cameron turned around and marched back to the van. She sheathed her gun back into its home then climbed into the running van. Once settled in the driver's seat, she realized that the upper half of the steering wheel was bent forward thanks to Cameron's earlier actions. She disregarded it and stole a glance at the unconscious human then put the van in reverse. She promised Sarah she'd complete their mission. She also planned to kill all those unconscious men in the warehouse that would be squealing like pigs for their life later.

To be continued.