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Not Quite Expected

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Summary: Where Harry Dresden arrives after the events of 'Changes' is not quite what he was expecting...

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Movies > TerminatorMusesInspireFR711,471068415 Dec 105 Dec 10Yes
Author: Muse
Title: Not Quite Expected
Challenge Entry: Written for Wishlist 2010
Prompter: dhark-charlotte
Fandoms: Dresden Files/Terminator Salvation
Characters: Harry Dresden
Prompt: Post-Changes
Notes: Woman, this prompt ROCKED! Loved writing it and have never had something come so easily to me that I didn’t need you to start me off! LOL I hope you enjoy it!
Disclaimer: Harry Dresden belongs to Jim Butcher; Terminator belongs to James Cameron and McG. No copyright infringement is intended and no profit is being made. This is strictly for entertainment purposes. Archiving is allowed, just please let me know where it is going!


The shot rang out with an echoing bark of noise. It was unexpected, that sound. I fell, the water of Lake Michigan rushing towards me with no hope of stopping. The shock of the water brought me out of my mental musings and I heard the voices; voices that seemed to be having an argument that I couldn’t quite hear.

Straining against the pain and the life force that was quickly leaving me, I was able to identify one of the voices. “Die alone…,” the mocking voice of Cassius said. I mentally winced; he just had to be right.

Another voice broke in, strong an authoritarian. Female, but I wasn’t able to identify it. “Hush,” she said.


I continued my descent through the cold waters of the lake. It was only a matter of time. I would soon reach the end of my time on this earth. I should have been raging against the fact that my life was cut short and that I still had so much left to do. However, the only thoughts in my mind were ‘who was going to let Mister out every morning’ and ‘will anyone else give Molly a chance to continue to prove herself’.

I never moved, but I saw a light ahead of me. With the light, I saw that I was moving down a tunnel, directly toward it. On the other hand, maybe it was moving toward me. The light looked like something warm and wonderful and I began to move toward it.

Right up until I heard a sound. Typical, I thought. Even when you're dead, it doesn't get any easier.

The light rushed closer, and I distinctly heard the horn and the engine of an oncoming train.

It wasn't a train I heard, it was a machine called a Hunter Killer. Moreover, I didn't hit the bottom of Lake Michigan as expected...


The rapid staccato of gunshots rang throughout the darkness of the night as Harry lay there on the ground, in shock and still trying to process what had exactly happened. Quickly, he ran his hands over his chest and found that the wound was healed, leaving a ragged-feeling scar behind. Blinking rapidly, he rolled over and pushed himself up onto his knees. The pain that lanced through his body caused him to wince in agony and pause in his efforts to stand up.

Suddenly, the droning engine once again sounded nearby and he looked up towards the sky, squinting his eyes to bring into focus what was causing the annoying racket that was making his head pound. Groaning, he drew himself up to his knees, swaying with the dizziness that swept over him and he swiveled his head to observe his surroundings in a desperate attempt to define where he was.

What he saw made his heart stutter to a brief stop.

Ruins. Rubble. Everything was shattered, dirty, and gone. He could make out the burn marks on concrete where something had blasted the walls into nothing more than cement boulders. The very ambience of the air was dismal; life had been sucked out and dismay had replaced it.

The sound of the engine drew closer and he finally forced himself to a standing position, the pain causing him to double over for a moment. Taking deep breaths to push through it, he finally allowed himself to fully take in his situation.

He was, quite obviously, no longer in Chicago. Or, at least, not the Chicago he knew and protected. Something had happened; something very, very bad.

Suddenly, a bright flash of light appeared next to him and the ground exploded, throwing him through the air to land in a crumpled heap next to the destroyed building across from where he had originally landed. The breath knocked out of him, he lay there for a brief moment in a daze not entirely sure what had just happened.

Shaking his head in confusion, his eyes widened in disbelief as the machine he had been listening to finally make its way into the street where he was now lying, breathless and feeling a sense of fear starting to sweep over him. It was like nothing he had ever seen before. Metal, bright lights searching; for what, he didn’t know. Gliding through the night sky, it moved with swiftness that he could only admire.

Right up until the lights landed on him and the machine obviously turned its attention towards him. Feeling a great sense of self-preservation, Harry struggled up through the myriad of debris and turning, sprinted off in the direction opposite of where the machine had come from. If there was one thing that he was good at, it was running. He’d had extensive experience in it and he drew upon all of his skills to evade the flying machine that raced behind him in chase.

Leaping like a gazelle, he jumped over a pile of rubble and landed in a crouch, taking temporary sanctuary from the pursing machine. Breathing heavily from the mad sprint to the current location, his mind raced frantically trying to figure out where to go. He had no idea where he was or where would be a safe place to head for.

He was so preoccupied in his thoughts that he didn’t hear the crunching approach of booted feet. He did, however, hear the metal clack of a bullet being chambered into a rifle. He suddenly found that he couldn’t breathe as he froze like a rabbit before a fox.

The metal of the barrel nudged him in the back and he turned slowly to see who, or what, was behind him. He started in surprise when he saw a young man, no more than sixteen, holding the rifle on him in a knowledgeable grip. Looking more closely, Harry saw that the kid was wearing old, ragged military fatigues that had seen better days. He was dirty, scraggly and had evidence of many cuts, bruises and scars.

The kid looked like he had been in a war.

Hearing the drone of the engines once again, Harry tensed. He saw that the boy stilled as well and then hunkered down with a soft curse. He watched in silence as the kid pulled out a pair of night-scope binoculars and eased himself up so that he could look up and over the pile of debris. The kid quickly sat back down and glanced around before looking at him.

“Are you some kind of idiot?” the kid asked with disbelief.

Harry frowned in confusion. “What?” He had no idea what was going on here.

The kid sighed and shook his head. “No one comes out at night! That’s when they hunt the most.” He regarding him for a long moment, then continue. “Although, I will say that it was awesome, watching you run from that HK!”

“HK?” Harry was, at this point, completely confused. “What’s an HK? Where am I?”

The kid’s eyes narrowed. “Hunter-Killer.” He watched Harry closely and then added, “You’re in Chicago.”

Harry snorted. “This isn’t Chicago! I know; I’m from Chicago!”

The kid’s eyes widened and then the surprise was quickly masked. Harry suddenly had a really bad feeling about the situation. “What year is this?”

The kid frowned even more deeply, if that were possible and then muttered out, “…always the same question. Always.” He took a deep breath and then answered the question, “It’s 2020.”

Harry jumped in surprise, not expecting that answer. Looking around with the new information, he now saw that he was, in fact, in downtown Chicago. Now that he could place himself, he was able to pinpoint various landmarks. He was about to ask what had happened to everything when the kid interrupted his thought process.

“Look, we need to get back to base. Connor’ll be pissed if I don’t report back on time.” The kid glanced back at Harry. “What’s your name?”

“Harry…” he answered. “Harry Dresden.” He was still in a state of dazed confusion. “I have no idea what’s going on, just so you know.”

The kid smirked at him. “No one does. It’s why we’re here in Chicago.” He paused for a moment. “My name’s Reese. Kyle Reese. And if you wanna survive here in this town, then you had better come with me.”


And that’s how I started my new life, with never knowing why I was brought to this new universe. I fight alongside John Connor, the leader of the Resistance. And I battle, once again, for all of humanity.

The End

You have reached the end of "Not Quite Expected". This story is complete.

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