Disclaimer: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles is the property of Warner Bros., and Josh Friedman. No monetary profit is being made from this fic.

John Connor- Making of a Warrior Scholar

Prologue

"Courage is fear holding on a minute longer."

-George S. Patton, LTG, US Army

Los Angeles, 2023 AD

The radios in the dusty command post were silent, the tension in the air was palpable, and everyone waited for the moment of decision. That first contact report to go out over the radios, or the link to the tacnets carried by every Tech-Com trooper in the 11th Infantry Battalion (Nightstalkers). So far, the HKs and accompanying T-800 infantry screen was inching across the repeater screen, slowly nearing a cross-hatched area labled "KZ OHIO". Skynet was seeking to bring to battle a human force that had bedeviling it's efforts in what remained of the Torrance district, what Skynet hadn't counted on was that the Humans had sought this all along.

The battalion commander sauntered over to the main display, chomping a ersatz cigar, and smiled wolfishly as the first elements of the machine force entered KZ OHIO.

"Wait for it, Captain, we don't want to scare them off...no, we don't. This time, we wipe these tin can bastards out."

Another fifteen seconds passed, and the battalion commander smiled again, and turned to the radio operators in the corner.

"Pass the word to all elements: Execute DRAGON SIX".

Orders passed over secure fiber-optic lines and data-links, and onward, the machines moved, searching to bring death to the humans that had thus far, evaded them, not knowing the only death that was presaged was their own.

The battle opened with the simultaneous launch of several modified FIM-92 Stingers at a Skynet EW bird that had been jamming across a number of frequencies. It barely had time to send out a contact report before two of the Stingers ripped off both engine nacelles and sent the craft hurtling into the ruined landscape below.

At that moment, the patch of ground, labeled on human maps as "KZ OHIO" or Kill Zone OHIO, lit up like a patch of hell itself. Most of the T-800s were cut down by a combination of plasma and .50 caliber fires, each terminator probably being stitched apart by at least a platoon each. The human positions had been covered by thermal tarps with tin strips woven into the tarps, to the machine IR and Radar imaging, they were effectively invisible. The "tank" HKs were hit by command detonated plasma charges, and two of the three "tanks" were blown apart immediately. The third hosed down a platoon of human infantry who was busily cutting down a T-800, but it didn't see the pre-war FGM-148 Javelin, set for top-attack mode before it was too late. The Javelin worked perfectly, and the HK had no time to slew its plasma guns for point defense. The missile's warhead detonated, propelling a jet of superheated solid metal right through the sensor head of the HK, it tore through the body of the HK, severing every major connection and slagging the CPU, worse yet, it lanced through the fusion bottle and liberated the superheated energies within from their magnetic containment. The explosion was not nuclear, but it was massive...and two more human infantry platoons were flash-fried to the man by the blast.

But, all in all, for the loss of one hundred some odd men, an entire pacification force from Skynet had been annihilated. A good day for the resistance, or at least that's what everyone else thought.

The battalion commander looked on at the incoming casualty reports.

"Fuck" he muttered. "That could have gone better".

It was then that a message was handed to the battalion commander. It was written in pencil, on pre-war hotel stationary, but there was no mistaking who it was from...noone else wrote orders like this:

Goldman,

Nice work, I need you back here at HQ Main, hand your battalion over to your exec and get your reprobate ass over here.

-Connor

Lieutenant Colonel JeffreyGoldman grimaced, "Wonder what idea Connor's got now." He waved his exec over "Al, you're in charge, in fact, I think you're getting the battalion soon."

Major Alice Chambers eyes boggled in shock "Sir, this can't be over Portland, I mean-"

"No, it's not, in fact, I can't tell you why, it's classified, but in short, I'm getting kicked upstairs, probably a staff job with Connor."

"Shit sir, won't be the same without you."

"You'll do fine, just remember what I taught you and keep frosty, ok?"

"Yes sir, good luck sir." Major Chambers intoned, and extended her hand, one professional to another.

Goldman smiled, and took the offered hand. "'till the next post Major".