The episode begins at the home of Martin Bedell, where a large unpleasant man confronts him, and we find out later kills him. Bedell's death was an accident since he had the same name as another man more important to John Connor and the resistance in the future. John finds three Martin Bedell's in the phone book, then realizes the writing on the wall left by the time traveler from the future contains a clue. Further investigation confirms that the Martin Bedell from the future is currently attending a military prep school. John declares he is going to help Bedell with Derek as backup. He wonders where they will hide Bedell but Derek recommends they not try to hide him. He needs to receive the military training to be important in the future, plus there are lots of soldiers and guns at the school. Sarah and Cameron will stay behind and try to save the other remaining Bedell listed in the phone book.
Ellison and Weaver are meeting in her office. She reveals she owns the Serrano nuclear power that almost had a meltdown. Ellison says the news reported it was an employees accident. Weaver shows him the mechanical eye from a Terminator and says they're are no accidents.
John and Derek arrive at the Presidio Alto military academy. Derek enrolls John in the academy on a trial basis and is asked to help at the academy until a replacement teacher shows up. The sight of the soldiers drilling invokes in Derek a memory of the future where Bedell countermands an order from John Connor via Derek in order to rescue captured resistance fighters.
At the home of another Martin Bedell, Sarah arrives just in time as the Terminator rings the doorbell and then fires through the door trying to kill this Bedell. Bedell is just a boy and Sarah hustles him into a waiting car driven by Cameron as the Terminator pursues. He leaps onto the roof of their vehicle, but Sarah's uses her weapon to knock him off the roof of the speeding car.
Ellison goes to the Serrano plant and asks the plant manager what really happened. The manager shows him a valve that was re-closed by someone with superhuman strength. He also shows an exploded transformer, but he has no idea what happened since the surveillance tapes have disappeared. He mentions to Ellison that the plant will undergo severe federal scrutiny before it is scheduled to go online in August 2009 using a new automated control system.
Derek is scoping the local woods when he notices tar bubbling up in various places. He also notices a deer quietly grazing nearby and watches with amazement. He hears gunfire in the distance and the scene shifts to the gunnery range where John is practicing with the other plebes. The plebe next to him has a problem with his firearm and John fixes it, due to the overwhelming practice he has had from his mother. Senior cadet Bedell notices him and gives him a demerit for not calling an instructor to assist. He then takes John running through the woods where they encounter Derek. Derek is temporarily stunned when he comes face to face with his comrade from the future for the first time.
Sarah and Cameron take the young Bedell boy back to their home. He wants to know when he can call his mother, and Sarah tells him when it is safe. He tries to call anyway but Cameron lifts him easily into the air and tells him the Terminator will kill both he and his mother if he doesn't cooperate. Later Cameron reveals they made a mistake but running and should have engaged the Terminator, even with the boy in the crossfire. Sarah says they did the right thing, and that the safety of the boy is now their mission.
Derek meets his plebes for the first time. They are eager to hear about his experiences in battle, thinking war is all about glory. Derek lets his emotions get the better of him and dresses down the eager young plebe with an example of a friend who was wounded terribly in battle. He then leaves after railing about war is not a game, but life and death for your squad, platoon, and the whole human race.
In a flash forward, we see the resistance led by Bedell planning their raid. Derek remembers how the fighters were all just boys.
At lunch in the academy, Bedell reveals to John that he is thinking of leaving the academy soon because of a girl in fell in love with. Later Derek and John meet and Derek reveals he has been on the roof and considers the woods as a likely entry point if the Terminator comes for Bedell. John tells him that Bedell is thinking of leaving, but Derek says he won't. John asks if the future is predetermined and they are all going through the motions. Derek says Bedell will stay and graduate because they will convince him to.
At the Connor house, Cameron and young Martin are watching a plea from his parents on the television. Sarah is angry with Cameron for letting him see that. Martin is upset that he has a book report due and he hasn't even picked out a book. Sarah shows him their small library and they start looking. Cameron pulls out The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by Frank Baum, saying that it was John's favorite. Later, Sarah sends Cameron to Martin's home to protect his parents, expecting the Terminator to return there.
Ellison goes to the local bar where the plant workers hang out. The bartender tells him there was a hottie chatting up the plant worker that was blamed for the accident at a party the night before the accident. There were some pictures on the bulletin board of the party and Ellison notices Sarah in one of them.
At the academy, Derek and John are preparing defenses in the woods. Derek shows John an armor piercing rifle shell that John's father favored. It hits a Terminator with the force of a 20mm cannon.
Ellison returns with his investigation findings to Weaver. He is pretty sure there were two Terminators, which is a surprise to Weaver. He tells her that he is not the only one looking deeper into the accident, that the plant manager wants the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to investigate. Later at the bar, the plant manager meets a beautiful young woman who takes him outside. When no one is around, she kills him with her shape shifting skills and transforms back into Weaver.
Cameron returns with the news that the FBI has taken Martin's parents into protective custody and that the trail has gone cold. In her opinion, the Terminator will try for the last Martin Bedell next. Sarah orders her to go to that Bedell house and kill the Terminator when it shows up.
Sarah learns from Cameron that the Terminator now knows about the military academy where Bedell is enrolled. She calls Derek and warns him, upset because Derek promised John would be in no danger at the academy. She tells him Cameron is on the way.
At the academy, Derek changes the squad's planned exercise based on his knowledge that the Terminator is on it's way. He tells the squad not to engage any armed man they see but to just signal him that he is coming. He then takes John and Bedell away and gives Bedell orders to engage the Claymore mine “simulators” that he and John setup earlier.
At the Connor house, Sarah helps Martin with his book report. The narration is eerily similar to what John and Derek and the squad are facing in the woods. The Terminator shows up and Derek takes a shot, taking out one eye. He takes off running with the Terminator in pursuit. At the right moment, John and Bedell set off the mines, which temporarily stops the Terminator, but it quickly recovers. Bedell is spooked and trips, falling down the hill. The Terminator advances and identifies Bedell as his target and starts after him. John sees this and refuses to allow another person to die on his behalf so he reveals himself to the Terminator, which has an override priority for him.
John takes off running with the Terminator now pursuing him. He crosses over a tar pit and stands on the other side, waiting for the Terminator to cross. When it gets halfway, Derek shoots it with the special ammunition, knocking it into the tar pit. John then sets the tar on fire, destroying the Terminator, while they and Bedell, who comes out of the woods, watches. Unknown to any of them, Cameron also watches from behind cover.
The next day, Sarah takes Martin to a bus stop. She sends him on his way back home and tells him to call her if he ever needs any help.
At the academy, John and Derek are packing to leave. Bedell asks if he is supposed to just continue with his life even now that he knows the end of the world is coming. John tells him yes, that it matters that he finish his training.
On the drive home, Derek tells John what happens to Bedell in the future. Bedell sacrifices his life to plant a bomb so that the Derek and Kyle can save the prisoners, one of which was John Connor. Derek tells him Bedell died for him, that they all will die for him. John says nothing with tears in his eyes as he lives with the weight of the world on his shoulders. Share this article with your friends