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Dream of the Burning Heart

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In "The new Life begins", Dante Aligheri described a horribly beautiful dream. In his dream, Love appeared in a mist of fire. He held a sleeping woman in his arms, and in his hand, Love held Dante's burning heart. Love fed Dante's heart to the terrified woman, and then left weeping.

She dreamed about the Terminator every night. Relentless in his pursuit. The French call sex le Petit Mort, the little death. He'd bring her the big death. Still her child and break her heart as his smile burned her world.

Sometimes, she'd wake up with her skin still on fire. Charlie would shift in his sleep and in those dream-drenched moments, she couldn't quite figure out why he didn't wake up to the drum of her heart beat. She didn't understand why he couldn't he hear the rapid rush of her heart's blood slamming through her veins? Feel the heat of her remembered fire?

He did. He would. It's what they did.

Then she'd make herself roll over. Try to dream of puppies and ice cream, but always she'd dream the fire licking her skin into char. The ring of his fingers around her neck pressing out her last exhale. She tried to dream of grass and lilacs, but always, every night, she dreamed of him, holding her burning heart.

She affected her environment where she went. John Connor was less easy to locate. Caucasian male, medium height, medium build. He did not affect.

She burned buildings. He'd stood in the burned out remains of Cyberdyne and examined the naked metal beams. To do so was within mission parameters, so he touched a scorch mark where the metal had buckled in the heat. He examined cracked concrete and calculated the probability that she would keep the same first name. It was high.

He did not sleep at night, so he knew that the name Sarah meant woman of high rank. This meaning had no meaning. There was only one Sarah Connor. T-1000-0b11111000000 had terminated all the others. She had terminated T-1000-0b11111000000. She had used a machine against him. Skynet had downloaded the recovered camera footage.

He would find Sarah Connor, and through her complete his mission. It was the reason for his existence. Skynet had downloaded the parameters and sent him back to terminate John Connor, who would terminate Skynet in the future.

Skynet had defined his mission and he could not sleep until it was completed.

His hand on the artifacts of her mission, he calculated her affect.