Chapter 78 – The Bitter End

"John, it's time to go." Sarah told her silent son standing in the corner looking out of the window.

John didn't move or even look up at his mother.

"Cameron herself said the chances of stopping them are less than 1%. I know it is sickening, but this is your destiny. You must survive to save mankind." Sarah told her son.

"No." John said to himself out loud. "1% is good enough for me to try."

Cameron walked over to John and started to study his eyes. "I know you're scared, but this day is going to happen, even if we prevent it today. It is fate."

"Can you really look outside and watch the kids play in the street, while we drive away to some bunker to hide out for years without trying to save them. To just hide while we allow the destruction of mankind?" John turned and asked his mother and Cameron.

"John, I understand. But.." Cameron started to speak.

John cocked his pistol and tucked it away in the side of his jeans.

"I will not watch this world burn if there is something I can do about it. You say it's my destiny. Does the future not change all the time? I could survive the nuclear war, and die to a stray bullet the next damn day. Different generals, new technology, smarter machines, think about it." John told his mother.

Sarah nodded and walked away to her room. Cameron stared at John for a while before she spoke.

"You know you are taking a big risk. I'll get the weapons.." Cameron told him.

John stared at her. "That's it? No trying to back me down? Knock me out and I wake up in a bunker?"

"I am your protector. My mission is to assist and protect John Connor." Cameron said to John.

John grabbed her arm before she walked away. He looked at her and said. "What about your opinion despite your programming?"

"Future John would do the same thing you are now. You never would stand down and let people die." Cameron explained to John. "We must get ready."

Mark and Liz walked in the house after throwing some things in the car.

"We ready to bail this state?" Mark asked John.

"Change of plans, Mark. I am going to bring the fight to Skynet. I can't let innocent people die." John answered Mark.

"That is suicide." Liz barked at John. "Mark, we must flee. There is no chance of success in this suicide mission."

"How many we got on board?" Mark asked.

"It would be yourself, Liz, my mother, Cameron, and me." John answered Mark. "Nicole and her boyfriend split the second they heard."

"I'm out. I will not march into a death trap." Liz said. "Are you coming with me Mark, or going to ride to your death?"

"I never did like long road trips and bunkers." Mark replied.

"Fool." Liz scolded Mark and stormed out the door.

"Damn, it would have been useful to have 2 coltan enhanced women on our side." Mark joked a little nervous.

"Nice joke." Cameron said patting Mark on his shoulder handing him a sniper rifle and pistol.

Sarah came into the room with a bag of ammunition and guns. "Let's do this."

They walked out the door and into the truck while Cameron drove them to the location John Henry directed. The ride was silent and tension was high.

The place looked more like a fortress than a base with four towers all of which at machines guarding every exit and every tower.

Cameron studied the patterns of the machines and she instructed Mark to take out the walking patrol guard while she takes care of the tower guard.

Mark looked at her oddly since there was no really good way to get to the tower guard.

"Fire when the patrol guard turns the corner, or I will be seen." Cameron told Mark.

Mark laid steady on the ground pointing the rifle towards the corner while Cameron dashed to the tower and started to climb the tower. The guard turned the corner and Mark shot and directly hit the machine in the eye. Sparks flew from the machine as it fell to the ground trying to recover from the damage. Cameron quickly reached the top of the tower and waited for the tower guard to look over the edge to see what happened. Like clockwork, the machine peered over the edge to be met by Cameron grabbing the machine and throwing him off the tower to the ground. The machine reached for its weapon, but Cameron knocked it away and battled the machine. Mark took another shot and hit the terminator in the leg knocking it down. Cameron used the leverage and twisted the machine's neck almost full circle before it saw its last vision. She signaled for the others to move up and while they moved she terminated the vision impaired machine on the ground. They snuck over to an opening a Cameron started to scan everything.

"Mark, take position in the tower and stay low. If we need cover fire, then you can help. Stay out of site. Sarah and John, stay here while I clear a path to the main building." Cameron instructed them. Cameron then moved about and carefully stayed hidden in the shadows to be undetected. Sarah looked around and noticed a second patrol was headed right towards Cameron.

"John, tell her a machine is incoming on her position!" Sarah told John. "She doesn't see it coming."

Sarah stepped out of the corner and raised her rifle to the machine and took aim. Her finger went for the trigger when a loud bang ran across the night sky. Sarah was knocked on her bottom and blood spilled from her arm and she yelped out in pain. John grabbed her leg and pulled her behind the wall. Spotlights came on and flashed all around John. Cameron grabbed her rifles and took to the fight to the machines. As she laid cover fire down, Mark sniped down a few targets before he saw Cameron get overwhelmed by at least a dozen of machines. Bullets bounced off her endoskeleton but started to take its toll on her flesh. Quickly overwhelmed the machines ripped the guns from her hands and pinned her down.

Another machine walked out of the main building dragging something with him. He walked over to Cameron and commanded the machines to get her on her feet.

"Welcome John, you didn't disappoint me. I knew you would show. Now come out peacefully before someone dies."

"Run John," Cameron yelled.

John was about to move before Sarah grabbed him. "They will kill you." she told him.

John Henry pointed at the tower Mark was in and motioned for one of his machines. The machine walked up to John Henry and pointed a rocket launcher at the tower and fired.

"Mark get out of there!" John yelled at the top of his lungs. He saw Mark jump up and dive off the side of the tower, but the rocket hit it and blew it all to pieces. He looked for Mark but saw nothing but rubble smoking on the ground.

"Run John, I will buy you some time." Sarah said picking up a gun and getting to your feet.

Sarah was about to turn the corner when a machine had came from behind and backhanded Sarah knocking her out. The machine pointed a gun at John's head and motioned for him to move towards John Henry.

"John, so good to see you again." John Henry told him. "Let's go inside." he said to John then jammed a power line into Cameron's exposed metal causing sparks to fly forced her CPU to power down.

John looked around as he was the last one standing and being pushed into the building. John Henry started telling John facts about humans, error rates, and even touched upon emotions. Then he showed John the arsenal of nuclear weapons that he was about to launch to start the war.

They got to a different room where the machines threw Cameron into a corner and threw a switch causing Cameron to be forcefully pinned to the ground. John saw her rebooting and looking at him.

"Magnetic field?" John asked.

"Yes." another machine told John. I wanted that bitch to watch you die. For her to see that she failed her mission, then I will kill her as well."

John recognized the machine from a month ago that Cameron escaped from using a grenade in its mouth.

"How's the mouth?" John sarcastically asked the machine.

"I am beyond your comprehension of a superior machine since the last time you met me. I will lead these machines after the war and kill your pathetic race." the machine ranted getting closer to John. "Now I just have to figure out how I want to kill you. My sensors twitch with excitement." he continued.

The machine stalked John, pointing a gun at his head, then his chest. It was toying with him.

"I have a better idea." John said.

Outside amongst the rubble, a brick was pushed down the pile and an arm weakly reached out for help. Bright lights shined at the pile and Mark faintly heard a car door open and slam shut. Bricks started to fly off of him and he saw a much needed friendly face.

"Try not to move, you are in horrible shape." Liz told Mark as she was trying to free him.

"You came back." Mark painfully said.

Liz freed Mark and felt a coltan vest under his shirt. "I thought you gave that to John." She said.

"I made a second one." Mark grinned as he spat out some blood.

"You have multiple broken ribs, fractured arm, and some pretty bad gashes on your legs. We need to get you to a hospital." Liz explained to Mark helping him to the car.

"The others," Mark paused. "They were captured. We need to free them."

"Are you freaking insane? You are in no shape, and I can't beat a dozen machines by myself." Liz scolded Mark.

"And after they kill them, who do you think will be hunted?" Mark said looked at her. He limped to the car and tore a shirt that was sitting in the back seat and wrapped his legs to stop the bleeding. "Besides, I have a plan."

"You wish to fight me, one on one?" the machine asked John.

"You worried machine?" John taunted his metal assassin.

"Fair enough." The machine grinned with excitement.

John looked around the room for anything he could use to his advantage. No metal stakes, Cameron was locked down in the magnetic field, and he saw the power line holding her down. The other dozen or so machines stood still intent on watching the final showdown. John Henry was happily watching on the other side of the room and watching over Sarah.

"Your move Connor." The machine jeered.

John looked at his feet then pulled a flash bang from his pocket and threw it at the machine's face. With precision the flash bang went off in the machine's face, blinding him temporarily. John went for the power panel to turn off the electricity to free Cameron, but felt a sharp pain as a bullet pierced his hand sending blood all over the wall.

John grabbed his hand in pain and looked for the other terminator which closed in on him and punched him in the face.

"Pathetic human." Spoke the machine.

"John!" Cameron whimpered out as she knew she was helpless to protect him. Sarah was still out cold.

The machine took its foot and pressed it against John's chest. The sheer weight was brutal to bare and he was only alive due to the coltan vest he had on.

John looked towards the doorway only to water pumping into the building. Then a bullet came whizzing by him and missed the machine slowing killing John. The machine looked over to see Mark holding a pistol aimed at itself.

"What is more pathetic? You thought a small bullet could stop me, or you missing your shot?" the machine criticized Mark.

"I didn't miss." Mark informed the machine.

The machine looked and saw the power line to the magnetic field was severed. Cameron was quick to her feet and speared the machine off of John.

"Kill them all!" John Henry instructed the other dozen machines watching the fight.

The dozen machines turned around to take action and Liz came to Mark's aid and tossed a sizable quantity of explosives into the pack of machines. She dove on top of Mark to shield him from the incoming shrapnel. John hid behind a cement pillar and Cameron and the other machine ignored it while battling it out in epic fashion.

John Henry showed his anger and picked up Sarah who was starting to come around. Liz saw the other machines starting to regroup and committed the most selfless act.

"Run!" Liz screamed as she grabbed the severed power line and grabbed onto the machine Cameron was fighting and pushed the live power cable into the wet ground. Sparks flew everywhere and multiple devices started to catch fire including Liz. All of the machines were rebooting except Cameron and John Henry. When Cameron looked back to John Henry he was out the door using Sarah as a human shield, when he was outside and in the vehicle he knocked her out and escaped in a jeep.

Mark carefully pulled Liz out of the mess and patted out the flames burning her arm. John and Cameron came back in the building and Cameron picked up Liz and ordered John to blow the building. John reached for his mother's backpack and set a large C4 explosive on top of the terminator he fought earlier. He rigged the charge to go off in ninety seconds.

"Sounds like it will go out with a bang." Mark joked spitting up blood.

Cameron came back in and helped Mark to the other jeep along with John. She put Sarah in the backseat with them.

She started the jeep up and floored the gas pedal to escape the massive explosion to come in less than forty seconds. As they fled the scene a helicopter came from the sky and beamed a light on them. Next Cameron saw multiple police and military vehicles coming after them.

"Pull the vehicle over or we will open fire." The helicopter demanded of them as multiple new helicopters came to the scene.

Cameron swerved the car into the city blocks and around buildings to lose the helicopters following her. She did her best until a SWAT truck pummeled the jeep and sent it plowing through a large shopping center.

Cameron tried to restart the jeep but it was totaled.

"John are you okay?" Cameron asked.

No response came from John. She looked over and saw Liz checking his pulse.

"He's alive, but they are in really bad shape. If we move them, they could bleed out and kill them." Liz said.

Liz grabbed Cameron's metal exposed arm but Cameron didn't budge.

"I won't leave John." Cameron told Liz. "I am his protector."

"You won't be able to stop millions of bullets that will hit him when you resist the police. We must disappear, they will get the paramedics for them, patch them up, send them to jail, and then you can get them back." Liz explained to Cameron.

Cameron nodded tearfully at Liz and they disappeared while the SWAT team came in and called in the medics for John, Mark, and Sarah. They searched the parameter for others but came up with nothing. The ambulances arrived and one by one they carefully pulled them from the car and on to the stretcher.

Liz beckoned Cameron to leave the area, but Cameron stayed behind as John was carefully taken to the ambulance.

"It's a miracle that all three of them are still alive." One medic said.

"With this more police around here, I don't know if I would ever want to wake up." The other medic told his coworker.

Cameron listening in, spoke to herself "You are about to punish the man that just saved you and mankind from the machines when he could have ran and been free."

The ambulances fired up the engines, turned on the sirens and headed to the nearest hospital. Cameron watched with tears in her eyes as John was being taken away. She whisked them away with her metallic finger.

"I swear on my life John, I will be back for you." She said to herself and turned away walked into the darkness of the street.

Authors Note: Thank you all for reading my story and I hope you enjoyed my written season. I currently plan on writing the next story within a couple of months in which I will release chapters twice a week.

To mix things up, I plan on writing the next story in "real time" like the show 24 did in the past. It will be 24 chapters, and I currently have the plot set up to continue right were this story and leaves off.

Once again, thank you for reading my story, favorite me, and looking forward to releasing new chapters soon for my readers!