Setting: Entrance Room
Time: Night 11
Summary: Marcus escapes one hell to find himself in another...
Warnings: Angst, some blood, possible movie spoilers
"Welcome home, Marcus."
The voice was startling, cold... familiar.
He turned round on his heels, his breath hanging in his chest. Dr. Kogen's face stared back at him from a thin glass screen, her dark eyes haunting and soulless. An eerie smirk came to her lips as he took a step toward her, his face laced with confusion.
"The image you see is determined by and projected from your central processing unit. Calculations confirm that Serena Kogen's face is the easiest for you to process."
Central processing unit. A computer chip. His jaw quivered as he released a shaking breath.
"What am I?" he managed. "What did you do to me?"
"You are an infiltration prototype. The only one of your kind. You were built as part of Cyberdyne's Project Angel, originally intended to extend human life beyond the death of the natural body. We merely amended your programming."
"No," he whispered.
"You died fifteen years ago, Marcus. What could you be, if not machine?"
The image scattered into scrambled red lines, shifting across the screen to draw out a wicked mechanical skeleton.
"You were made to serve a purpose." The image shifted back to the doctor's face, staring down at him with lifeless eyes. "To find a target, and then bring that target back home to us."
No. No. NO.
"Accept what you are, Marcus." The inhuman eyes flashed red and the image flickered briefly, the electronic voice clicking. "You are no longer bound by the human condition."
He swayed on his feet, could feel his hands shaking. His heart raced in his chest. The last bit of humanity he had left, pounding against the metal that replaced everything he had been born with.
"I am human," he breathed, his voice shivering in his throat as the words slipped through.
"You have human components," the computer corrected, "sustained by your cybernetic system. You are not human."
He reached back, running his fingertips along his hairline at the base of his skull. He could feel it, the hard little chip that made him what he was, the sharp outline underneath the flesh.
And he could feel his fingernails as they peeled through it.
"What are you doing, Marcus?" the computer insisted.
A sudden rush of heat washed over his fingers. He was bleeding. He was human. The chip cracked as he dug his nails deeper, underneath the corners to pry it away. It made a sickening slurp as it pulled free of the metallic skull, squeezed tight between his slickened fingers.
And then it snapped.
The face in front of him suddenly distorted, and the voice that spoke to him no longer resembled a human as it had moments before. Electronic, cold and monotonous, it stammered through the static, unable to maintain a cohesive image.
"Y-ou will no-not be given a second—sec-second ch-ance."
"I don't need one," he growled. His blood-soaked fist clenched at his side, the chip crackling as it disintegrated in his hand; the remnants of the doctor's face scrambled into electronic static. He dropped the broken CPU as he turned back around and swept toward the control center door.
Throwing it open, he looked out over the industrial landscape of Skynet, took a step forward...
A metallic, unearthly sound echoed around him as he hit the floor. Setting his hand on the ground to push up startled him; the slick concrete of Skynet was gone. He ran his fingers over smooth, cold marble, his brows furrowed.
Now where the hell was he?