Aiding The Connors
- "Some people refuse to accept the reality of the situation, which is that they carry death with them."
- – Derek Reese. ("Samson & Delilah")
Derek returned from the park to the Connor residence to find it aflame and the Jeep reduced to a smouldering wreck. As the fire services arrived on the scene, Derek stole some equipment and disguised himself as a fireman, allowing him to enter the house and gather money, clothes, diamonds and a few guns. Upon exiting the house, Derek spotted Charley Dixon examining the charred bodies of the real Sarkissian (the owner of the internet café) and his henchman, and decided to sneak inside his ambulance.
Charley burst into the vehicle, almost getting himself shot by a jumpy Derek, after which he explained his theory of what happened at the house and showed Charley the burnt-out hard-drive they’d stolen from Sarkissian the night before. Charley then received a call about a car accident and, believing it to be John and Sarah, followed the call to the location where they learned they were on the right trail. Whilst stuck in a traffic jam, Derek questioned Charley’s true motives for helping them, suggesting that he was intending to "join the team".
Derek and Charley eventually tracked the Connors to an old warehouse and the latter patched up their injuries, which were numerous, while Derek examined the disabled Cameron. He learned that she had been damaged when the Jeep exploded, reverting her back to her Skynet settings and directing her to terminate John. Derek approached John and tried unsuccessfully to convince him to destroy Cameron, stressing that she is no different than any other machine. John remained adamant, however, and angrily declared that he "need(s) her".
John was eventually convinced by his mother, however, and they took Cameron’s body to a remote location where she was placed inside a car and Derek poured thermite all over her. He then asked John for her chip, but he decided to perform the deed himself. After being handed the flare, however, John had a change of heart and reinserted Cameron’s chip, much to Derek’s horror. He lunged forward and tried to stop John, but the boy grabbed Derek’s gun and pointed it at him while Sarah pushed Derek away.
He could only watch in terror as Cameron reactivated and John gave her his gun as a sign of faith, making her promise not to kill him, which she did and handed back the gun to John. Derek was visibly angry and surprised by this development, staring at Cameron with a mixture of resentment and exasperation. They then went to a small church where the Connors had taken sanctuary earlier in the day, and Derek retrieved the bag of money and clothes, after which he tucked into a sandwich and snidely commented on Charley’s absence.
- "It’s a key strategic hold. It’s one of our main sources of power."
- – Derek Reese. ("Automatic for the People")
The following morning after John’s birthday, Derek once again suggested to a tired Sarah that they should get rid of Cameron, speculating that it was only a matter of time before she turned on them again. While John went to school to enjoy a "boring" day, the three of them went in search of a new place to stay, finding a house for rent from a pregnant landlady called Kacy Cotton. Given the house’s size and lack of more than three bedrooms, Derek was faced with sleeping on the couch again, which he did for only a brief time.
Before they could properly settle into this new place, a mortally wounded Resistance fighter came crashing into their living room, warning them to "stop Greenway" at the Serrano Point Nuclear Power Plant, before dying from his injuries. With Sarah still sore from her encounter with a reverted Cameron the previous day, Derek offered to take care of this issue in her stead, but Sarah refused to allow him free reign as she believed that he would take more lives than he would save (a call-back to his assassination of Andy Goode).
He, Sarah, and Cameron staked out the power plant, Derek explaining its importance to the Resistance in the war as their main source of power. Sarah and Cameron infiltrated the plant as workers to get an inside perspective on what the Resistance fighter was trying to warn them of. They later visited the workers' favoured bar to learn more from Carl Greenway, allowing Derek the opportunity to break into Greenway’s car to look for anything convicting.
As he examined Greenway’s driver’s licence, a man appeared out of nowhere and smashed the rear windscreen, spooking Derek at first before realising that it was just a laid-off employee looking for revenge. He then joined Sarah and Cameron in the bar and informed them of this development, learning that Greenway is being persecuted for his concerns over the unstable reactor and the possibility of a meltdown should it be activated the next day.
Derek correctly guesses this to be Skynet’s plan; to either trigger a meltdown and destroy most of its immediate enemies before they can become a threat, or to shut down the plant and make it useless to the Resistance in the future. Either way, Skynet wins. The next day, Derek searches Greenway’s house and finds him hanging from his living room ceiling, apparently having committed suicide. Sarah, however, informs him over the phone that Greenway is at the plant and he is acting out of character.
It becomes clear to them both that he has been replaced by a T-888 and Derek rushes to the plant to help Sarah stop the machine from triggering a meltdown. He meets her in the control room and tries to call the help line for advice on how to fix the impending meltdown, but is unable to give a security code and abandons the idea when Sarah disappears to help Cameron defeat the Triple-8. He follows her to a radiation room but doesn’t enter, unlike her, deciding to go the long way around.
He arrives in time to see Cameron fix the damage to the plant and the Triple-8 crippled by a transformer explosion. With the plant safe, they dispose of the machine and return home, where they find a bloody list of names and locations on the basement wall, as left by the deceased Resistance fighter.
- "That thing took your wife to get to John. You think it gives a damn about her? Your wife's dead."
- – Derek Reese. ("The Mousetrap")
Whilst sorting through guns in the garage, Derek is approached by Sarah, who informs him that Charley Dixon’s wife has been kidnapped by Cromartie, the T-888 assigned to terminate John. Derek immediately realises that this is all just a ploy to get to John, but Sarah remains determined to help her ex-fiancé and prepares to leave. Derek hastily gathers an M-79 grenade launcher and jumps in the car with Sarah. They meet Charley and Derek bluntly suggests that his wife is already dead, but she suddenly calls Charley on his cell phone.
She tells them where she is and they drive to a small building in the middle of the desert where she is apparently being held. Derek enters first with the M-79 and checks every room, finding Michelle Dixon strapped to what appears to be a chair-bomb. He then searches the rest of the building while Sarah dismantles the fake explosive and frees Michelle, after which she calls John to warn him to stay with Cameron. Derek finds recording equipment in another room and yells at the others to get out as the cell phone tower explodes.
The tower collapses on the building, injuring Michelle and disabling Sarah’s cell phone signal, forcing them to walk through the desert (as Cromartie had snuck around and disabled their car). They happen upon a cell tower repair van and take his vehicle by gunpoint, determined to get to John before Cromartie does. With Michelle bleeding to death in the back, however, Sarah is forced to stop to allow Charley the chance to try and stem the bleeding. She unfortunately dies in hospital, however.
They pick up Cameron and a soaking wet John, returning home to mourn Charley’s loss as they sit down to dinner.
- "The game is played with the lives of your squad, your platoon; the game is played by you. On behalf of the whole damned human race!"
- - Derek Reese. ("Goodbye to All That")
While reading the local paper one day, Derek learned of the murder of a man called Martin Bedell, a name shared by Derek’s long-lost comrade. He correctly deduced that this was the work of a Terminator and informed Sarah and John of this development, suggesting they make provisions to protect the other two Bedells as found in the phone book. John, remembering a name on the basement wall, located Derek’s Bedell at the Presidio Alto military academy. Sarah reluctantly allowed John to go with Derek to retrieve Bedell.
Derek and John packed up their truck and drove to the academy, during which John asked him what he planned to do with Bedell once they found him. Derek replied that they would simply keep an eye on him as opposed to stashing him in a hole somewhere, reasoning that a Bedell in hiding was no use to Future John and the Resistance. Upon arriving at the academy, Derek was struck by nostalgia and recollected his military days with Bedell. He then spoke with the head of the academy and secured a place for John and himself.
While John took part in his weapons training Derek wandered the nearby woodlands with a M-82 Barrett .50 caliber sniper rifle and took notes of the surrounding area, finding large puddles of tar about the place. While examining one such puddle he happened upon a deer on the other side of the river bank and was reminded of Kyle during their early days pro-Judgment Day before the animal was scared away by gunfire from the academy’s rifle range.
He was later approached by John and Bedell while they were both on a run. Derek scolded John for leaving himself open and vulnerable, but ceased his lecture upon recognising Bedell, seeing the man he once knew in the youth’s face. Later that day he met up with the team of cadets as instructed and was struck by the ignorance of one cadet, called Pyle, who expressed inappropriate enthusiasm towards killing the enemy.
Derek berated the cadet and recalled a far-from-glorious battle he and Kyle once fought, during which a squad mate had his stomach blasted open, forcing Kyle to carry him to an aid station. After intimidating the youth Derek left for the canteen where he became lost to his thoughts before later checking the perimeter from the academy’s roof. He then found John alone in a room and once again commented on his lack of caution.
John informed him of Bedell’s desire to leave in favour of chasing a girl, but Derek was unconcerned, stating that Bedell would remain because he is supposed to. This angers John, who is tired of people telling him how his life should be. He then proves to Derek that he is being cautious by listing the nearest exits and an unlocked car within running distance. The next day Derek is called by Sarah who informed him that the T-888 was coming for Bedell.
Derek promised to keep John and Bedell safe, but Sarah was less optimistic and sent Cameron to assist them, threatening to kill him if he lets anything happen to John. Derek leads the cadets into the woodlands for a training exercise, during which he and John place landmines for the Triple-8. Derek told John about how he and Kyle hunted down a deer one day for food, but Kyle cried so much that Derek buried it and they went hungry instead. John reminded him that they were just boys at the time and that he wouldn’t have expected any less.
With the traps in place, Derek gathered the cadets and had them take positions within the woods, telling them that a “man with a gun” would be coming through at night. He instructed them to give hand signals when the Terminator was spotted, allowing Derek to get the drop on it and blast it with his rifle. The first shot disabled the Triple-8’s right eye and cracked the side of its skull, after which it chased Derek through the woods and right into the trap.
Derek signalled John, who set off the detonators and blew the mines, stopping the Triple-8 in its tracks. It was not destroyed, however, and rose to its feet, catching sight of Bedell in the process. John jumped out of his hiding place and declared himself to the machine, forcing it to change targets and chase John across a tar pit. Once there, Derek took out the machine’s legs, making it topple into the tar before blasting its skull open with a single close range shot to the head.
John then lit a flare of thermite and threw it on the Triple-8’s body, burning the endoskeleton with Bedell as a witness. The next day Derek and John packed up their stuff and said their farewells to Bedell before leaving the academy. On the way home, Derek told John the story of Bedell’s heroic sacrifice in the future, stating that every soldier in the Resistance dies for John Connor.
- "I knew this guy once. Roughest son of a bitch I ever knew. We dug tunnels together. And then one day he went out to take a leak and while he was out there he just decided to blow his head off. You know, he fought and he fought; until one day he just couldn’t anymore."
- - Derek Reese. ("The Tower Is Tall But the Fall Is Short")
Upon returning home from a five hour run one day, Derek found the Connors spying on a psychologist whose name was on the list in the basement. Suddenly a gunshot rang out from John’s room and Derek, Sarah, and Cameron rushed upstairs to investigate, finding him otherwise unhurt after an accidental discharge while cleaning his gun. The next day Derek went out on another run and stopped in a park for a hotdog, something he apparently does often as the lady served him his “usual”.
While sitting on a bench, Derek spotted a figure watching him before suddenly running away. Derek gave chase and cornered the mysterious woman as she was about to get inside her apartment. He was shocked to discover that she was Jesse Flores from the future. Jesse explained how she’d gone AWOL after the death of a friend and escaped the horrors of the future through time travel. Derek was incredulous that she had turned away from her duty as a soldier, despite her claims that Future John was being reckless.
He left her, needing time to think over everything, and returned to the Connor house where he found Sarah in the garage. He decided to tell her a story about a man (actually himself) who just decided one day to kill himself after many years of fighting. Sarah angrily dismissed his suspicions that John was suicidal, to which Derek agreed, though he also asserted that John wasn’t a soldier yet, nor was he a boy or a man. He had changed after watching Sarah kill Sarkissian, although it was actually John who killed him, though Derek was unaware of this.
Derek later returned to Jesse’s apartment and thanked her for interrupting him during his suicide attempt in the future, after which they slept together. Jesse then sent Derek to get her a drink while she hid a pile of photos of him, John, Cameron, and Sarah under her bed. Derek returned to the Connor house to find a severely crippled Terminator, whom Cameron had disabled at the psychologist’s practice. The machine had self-destructed when Cameron attempted to remove its chip, a new feature for machines that prevents reprogramming.
Derek then returned to the park and once again sat on the bench, watching the world go by with a hotdog in his hand.
- "Why we’re here is because our security system didn’t work. Why we’re here is because that kid acts less like John Connor and more like John Baum every day."
- - Derek Reese. ("Brothers of Nablus")
While in bed with Jesse after having spent the night in her apartment, Derek is called by Sarah, who informs him that they’ve been robbed, and all their cash, diamonds, and food has been taken. Derek tells her to head into town while he gathers his clothes. Jesse woke up and asked him who he was talking to but he simply joked his way out of answering and left. Derek met Sarah and Cameron in town and took them to a diamond businessman called Moishe.
Moishe had some of their diamonds in his possession but was very reluctant to give up the name of the seller until Derek pleaded with him, after which he agreed to help “for Jesse”. Upon leaving, Sarah asked Derek who this Jesse was but he lied and said “he” was a Resistance fighter who came back in time with him and was killed by a machine. The three of them then tracked down the man they believed had their stuff, but it turned out Moishe had scammed them into collecting money from the guy.
Sarah criticized Derek for putting them in this position, but he turned around and placed the blame squarely on John, accusing him of becoming less like John Connor and more like John Baum every day. Sarah cryptically told him that John had been through more than he could imagine, to which Derek coldly replied: “Right back at ‘cha.” He then abandoned her and went to visit Jesse again, finding her relaxing beside an apartment pool.
He told her about Moishe mentioning her name and she promised to talk to him later. Many hours later he went to visit Moishe himself, only to find him and his men dead, Jesse being the culprit. Derek was unperturbed by this, however, and bagged as many diamonds as he could before leaving with her in tow.
- "It’s the alarm code; John’s in trouble."
- - Derek Reese. ("Mr. Ferguson is Ill Today")
As per his orders from Future John, Derek stopped by his weapon cache to resupply used ammunition and other essentials. While restocking, Derek was surprised by an intruder and drew a shotgun on the person, only for it to be Cameron. Surprised that she knew of this location, he accused her of stealing his supplies, to which Cameron claimed John had given her permission. Annoyed, Derek expressed his frustration with John’s behavior in the present. He then received a call and left the room when Cameron asked about it.
The call was from John, who left an alarm code on Derek’s voicemail, alerting him to his predicament in Mexico. Derek informed Cameron of John’s situation and they both drove to the village of Dejalo only to find the place shot up by whom Cameron correctly assumed to be Cromartie. Derek suggested they keep a low profile, but Cameron marched into the police station regardless, expressing genuine concern for John’s safety in the process. Derek was visibly surprised by her blatant emotional reaction.
He then received a call from Sarah who told him that John was safe with her and instructed him to meet her at the Dejalo chapel. There Derek and Sarah set up on the exterior roof of the chapel with sub-machine guns while former FBI Agent James Ellison lured Cromartie inside. Once there, Derek opened fire, striking Cromartie on the cheek and drawing his fire while Sarah attacked from the other window. They succeeded in distracting him long enough to allow Cameron to sneak up behind him with a high-powered combat shotgun.
She fired into his face four times, crippling the Triple-8 and flooring him. Derek, Cameron, Sarah, Ellison, and finally John gathered around the disabled machine and the latter performed the coup-de-grace with a Desert Eagle to the head. They then buried Cromartie’s body behind the chapel with the intention of coming back later with thermite to burn it. While destroying Cromartie’s chip, Sarah suffered a breakdown and Derek and Cameron looked on as John comforted his distraught mother.
- "Some people, you can beat them and beat them, and they'll take it. Whatever pain you give them, they absorb it, like it was theirs all along and all you're doing is giving it back to them."
- - Derek Reese. ("Complications")
While driving back from Mexico, Derek received an urgent call from Jesse, who told him to meet her and to bring a gun. He met her in a warehouse filled with shipping containers, inside of which she’d tied up a man called Charles Fischer. Jesse accused him of being a “Gray”, a human who worked with Skynet to teach machines how to understand humans, and was incredulous when Derek couldn’t remember Fischer, despite having full knowledge of the Grays.
Determined to prove she was right, Jesse left Derek alone with the man to retrieve evidence. He bought them both cheeseburgers and sat down with Paul Stewart, as he called himself, and they discussed his life. Paul was adamant that Jesse had made a mistake, but Derek remained suspicious of the man, especially after spotting a handless clock tattoo on Paul’s right arm; prison ink that means “until the end of time” aka life sentence.
Derek then called Cameron but was immediately hung up on when he failed to give the challenge code. He tried again, this time remembering the code, and sent her a picture of Fischer and asked if she had any records of his face. Cameron claimed not to recognise him, however, so Derek told her not to worry about it and hung up. Jesse later returned with the present day Fischer and showed Derek a birthmark on both of the men’s necks, proving their relation.
Paul continued to plead his innocence, however, accusing the young Fischer of being “in on it” as well. Derek and Jesse once again argued over whether this really was Fischer, resulting in Jesse telling him about her capture and interrogation by him in the future. When asked how she escaped, however, Jesse revealed that it actually wasn’t her who was captured, it was him. Derek was shocked by this revelation and approached Paul again, demanding he tell him the truth, but Paul remained uncooperative.
In a bid to loosen Paul’s tongue, Derek took a pair of wire cutters and cut off the tips of young Fischer’s fingers, horrifying Paul into confessing his real identity as Charles Fischer. He then told Derek that his being in the past was his reward for services rendered, and that he had been captured by Skynet whilst incarcerated in Pelican Bay with a life sentence. Derek still could not recall Fischer, however, and decided he’d rather not, so he took out his gun and aimed at young Fischer.
Before he could shoot him, however, Jesse shot the older Fischer and convinced Derek to spare the younger one on the grounds that he wasn’t the monster she’d just killed. Derek buried older Fischer’s body in a remote location and mused that maybe his actions in the past have indeed altered the future and that the reason he doesn’t remember Fischer is because Jesse is from an alternate timeline to the one he’d come from originally.
Jesse asked him if there was a future in which they never got together, but Derek assured her there wouldn’t be.
- "Listen to yourself. First it’s the dots, then it’s the AI, then it’s the chip. Whatever you’ve needed it to be, that’s what it is. You were played, it happens. Welcome to the human race."
- - Derek Reese. ("Strange Things Happen at the One Two Point")
Following another lead on their wall, Derek and Sarah broke into the offices at Dakara Systems and stole their computer hard drives, then returned home and had John hack into them. He discovered that they contained blueprints for an AI platform built to handle big problems and to counteract attacking systems. Sarah immediately assumed this to be a target to be pursued, but Derek was unconvinced of its significance and declared that it had nothing to do with the Turk; therefore it wasn’t worth their time.
He then stopped by Jesse’s apartment while she was in the shower and somehow discovered her surveillance photos of him, John, and Cameron. When she emerged from the bathroom he confronted her at gunpoint and threatened to shoot her unless she explains her motives for spying on them. Jesse informed him that, in the future, John had become a recluse who only ever spoke to Cameron and was making questionable decisions, including the mass-reprogramming of captured Skynet Terminators.
She claimed to have come back to stop Cameron and to save John, to which Derek decided he’d need time to think on it. Jesse asked him why he was sent back, and Derek responded by holding up a picture of him and John, declaring: “I love you, but don’t push it” before leaving. He and John later carried some equipment into the house, during which Derek called his attention to the three dots on a belt strap. John at first assumed he was mocking Sarah, but Derek explained how he too was starting to see the dots all over the place now.
Concerned by what Jesse had told him, Derek asked John if he was seeing things clearly, to which John replied: “I remember. I always remember.” Derek later joined Sarah and Cameron in a raid on Minamoto’s apartment, a Japanese actor who was hired to scam Sarah out of $500,000. Minamoto explained his part in the coup, but Sarah refused to believe him until Derek cut in. They all gathered outside where John was waiting and Derek dismissed Sarah’s paranoia about the three dots and correctly deduced that she’d been played all along.
He then returned to Jesse’s apartment and informed her of his relation to John, after which he demanded she tell him everything that was going on. Jesse replied by confessing to using his spare toothbrush during their station at Serrano Point, jokingly deflecting his suspicion for the time being.
- "You don’t get used to it. You just learn to live with it."
- - Derek Reese. ("Alpine Fields")
A name on the list led Sarah and Cameron to the Fields family, who had been targeted for termination due to the mother, Anne, carrying a girl who will one day provide a cure for a deadly disease that Skynet will unleash on the human race. Sarah and Cameron succeeded in saving the family, but the machine remained on the hunt as they went into hiding. Six months in the not-too-distant future, Derek tracks Anne and her daughter, Lauren, to an old bus warehouse and offers his assistance.
Lauren explains to him that the Terminator tracked them down and killed her father before shooting Anne in the shoulder. Derek helps tend to Anne while Lauren takes a breather. It becomes apparent to him that Anne won’t survive her injury and she dies shortly after giving birth to her daughter, Sydney. Derek offers Lauren the chance to stay with them at the Connor house, but after getting off the phone to Sarah, he finds her and the baby gone.
- "You made the call. See what living with it means."
- - Derek Reese. ("The Good Wound")
While at Jesse's place, Derek received a call from John, informing him of Riley's attempted suicide. Derek passed this on to Jesse, who was concerned for the girl, before leaving to meet John at the hospital. Upon arriving, Derek scolded John for bringing her to a public place due to the potential security risks involved. John defended his actions, telling him that it was his call to make.
Derek later received a call from an injured Sarah, requesting his aid in covering her tracks. He informed John of this development and made him stay put while he drove to the hospital where Sarah had been taken. On the way he was called by Sarah again, who told him that she was in a morgue, which he initially thought was a joke. He then blew up Sarah's Jeep and snuck into the offices to burn her hospital file and steal the cop's laptop.
Derek found Sarah in the morgue like she said, only to be held at gunpoint by the doctor she'd kidnapped. Derek quickly drew his own gun and a standoff began, which turned into a triangle when an abusive cop entered and demanded the doctor drop her weapon. The doctor shot the cop, however, allowing Derek to check on Sarah. The doctor thought Derek was John's father, the Reese Sarah had called to in her delirium, but Sarah dismissed her claims.
Derek then helped Sarah out of the hospital and drove her out to the warehouse she'd been shot at. En route, Sarah tried to tell him about his relation to John but he cut her short, having already figured out his place as John's uncle. They notice smoke on the horizon where the warehouse was and immediately drive to investigate.
- "You called me Reese again. It's what you used to call him, isn't it? Kyle? You know, maybe you should try and let him go."
- - Derek Reese. ("Desert Cantos")
Derek, Sarah, John, and Cameron decide to attend the funeral of the deceased workers after the explosion of the mysterious warehouse, hoping to find out what they were working on in the desert. Upon arrival, Derek overheard Cameron musing about the Native Indian's belief that the dead's souls are imprisoned in photographs, to which he sardonically reassured her that she was safe from such a fate (due to her not having a soul).
He and Sarah found the photoboard of Ed Winston, the man she was forced to kill, and Derek mused that one would not think of this man as being capable of murder. Sarah could see the potential, however, and left Derek to pick up a candle for the commemoration speech, during which he bumped into Mr. Walsh (an agent of Catherine Weaver). Sensing an oddness to the man, Derek watched him during the chapel service, later slashing his tires to keep him from joining the procession.
Derek offered Walsh a lift to the cemetery, during which he interrogated him over his "investigation" of the warehouse (and also identified him as a former cop). Walsh grew uncomfortable with Derek's questions, however, and decided to walk the rest of the way. Derek arrived at the cemetery and informed Sarah of Walsh's suspicious behaviour, prompting her to decide to follow him herself. Derek is amused when Sarah calls him "Reese", pointing out that it was what she used to call Kyle and suggested that she move on from his death, a suggestion she throws back at him.
He, John, and Cameron later attend the wake and muse over the odd behaviour of one particular family who don't appear to be overly upset by their loss. John suggests that the daughter and mother's father/husband is not actually dead, which Derek sees as a bit of a stretch. Cameron convinces him, however, by pointing out that they (the family) aren't paying any attention to the photoboard. Derek concedes that the husband/father is not dead and later calls Sarah, learning that she has discovered an underground surveillance room beneath the nearby house.
Derek likens the setup of the CCTV system as the same as that of a Skynet Work Camp, after which the group visits a waterhole in the desert and find the dead body of Mr. Walsh. Before they can make sense of his death, a Drone rises out of the water and flies off to the mountains, reminding Derek of the HK-Aerials he fought in the future.
- "My people seem distracted. What about you?"
- - Derek Reese. ("Ourselves Alone")
While practicing their aim by shooting apples, Derek asks Jesse for help in capturing a lawyer and possible lead to the Kaliba group. Jesse remains adamant that she is not here to stop the war, but to win it instead. Derek doesn't understand the difference and asks her again for help in his task, to which she reluctantly agrees. After having John investigate the lawyer's favourite restaurant, Derek goes there to stake out the lawyer and questions a flirtatious woman who knows the man personally.
He later returns to Jesse's apartment and pours over surveillance photos, Jesse arriving sometime later. He expresses his plan to ambush the lawyer on his way to the airport that very night, but Jesse again remains reluctant, though Derek insists she takes part. At night, he waits in a bush on the roadside, but Jesse fails to attend and the target escapes.
- "Good? An innocent kid is dead because that metal bitch murdered her in cold blood. No good comes out of that."
- - Derek Reese. ("Today Is The Day, Part 1")
Derek receives a call from Jesse and rescues her from a bar fight, though she refuses to explain why she was in a brawl. Stopping in an alley, he tends to her injuries and warns her against punching people in the mouth, recalling a man in the future who died of infection after punching someone in the mouth. He then received a call from Sarah, learning of Riley's murder by whom they both assume to be Cameron.
Upon taking Jesse back to her hotel, she reasoned that Riley's death should have a positive impact on how John treats Cameron. Derek failed to see how any good could come from an innocent girl's death, however, and they then slept together, after which he left to meet with Sarah.
- "I don't even know you. I don't know who you are... You're not my Jesse. You never were. John Connor said to let you go... I'm not John Connor."
- - Derek Reese. ("Today Is The Day, Part 2")
Derek met up with John, picking him up from the city morgue, and they sat in their truck in the rain and discussed the future. John asked him about his chances should Cameron decide to terminate him, to which Derek simply replied "If she wants me dead, I'm dead." John then questioned him about his future and revealed his knowledge of Jesse and her involvement with Riley. Derek drove John home and then later drove him to Jesse's apartment while she was out.
Sometime later, Jesse came down from her apartment, having been disarmed and allowed to leave by John. Derek confronted her in the car park and told her about Billy Wisher, whom he discovered was once called Andy Goode, telling her that they were like brothers and that he loved him as such, but came back in time to kill him for the sake of Kyle, the world, and Jesse. Knowing his mindset, Jesse tearfully pleaded with Derek and tried to explain her actions, but Derek, feeling utterly betrayed and no longer recognising her as his Jesse, pulled a gun on her.
Jesse threw her bag in his face and ran for her life, but Derek put her in his sights, his hands shaking as he hesitantly started squeezing the trigger. It is unknown whether he killed Jesse or not, for when he returned to her apartment and was asked as to whether he pulled the trigger, Derek ambiguously replied "John Connor let her go". He then told John that the Resistance does not trust his choices, but they still realise that their survival rests on his shoulders.
- "You did the right thing by telling me. Thank you."
- - Derek Reese. ("To the Lighthouse")
Having finally packed up and crammed all their belongings into the two trucks, Derek, the Connors, and Cameron abandoned their house and headed off for a new loaction in the desert. While John and Sarah supposedly went straight to the new safe house, Derek and Cameron stopped by the weapons cache to empty it of weapons and supplies. Whilst looking through the assortment of items, Cameron came upon a jacket belonging to Jesse, which Derek snatched away from her.
She then shocked him with the revelation that he had fathered a child with Jesse, but that it was lost during her mission aboard the USS Jimmy Carter in the future. Derek pinned Cameron against the shelves and stuck a gun under her chin, to which she pointed out he couldn't kill her, though he replied; "I can try" before storming out of the cache. Later, he thanked Cameron for telling him about the miscarriage.
While driving to the safe house, their truck experienced a puncture, forcing them to stop while Cameron replaced the tire. Derek spotted a van parked suspiciously up the road and went to investigate, only to be tazered and dragged into it by a group of unknown assailants. Cameron tried to rescue him, even killing one of the attackers, but they got away. Derek was tied up in a warehouse where he was eventually found and rescued by Cameron, who feared he might give up John's location under torture, commenting that he had done once before (in the future, presumably).
- "My brother’s buried out there; I thought that counted for something between us."
- - Derek Reese. ("Adam Raised a Cain")
After receiving a call from John, informing him of Charley’s death and Sarah’s location, Derek and Cameron retrieved Sarah and met up with John at the gravesite of Kyle Reese. Derek asked Sarah why she tricked him and Cameron, expressing his belief that they had a mutual understanding, but Sarah accused him of keeping too many secrets from her. Derek tried to comfort John over Charley’s death, but was met with cynicism and presented with a new assignment.
Together, the group visited the Weaver residence to protect Savannah Weaver from a Skynet attack. While Sarah, Cameron, and John approached the house through the garage, Derek made his way through the front entrance where he was abruptly shot in the head by the Terminator and died. After neutralising the machine, the others found Derek’s body, much to John’s horror, and Sarah took his wallet and gun before leaving as the police arrived.
Derek was cremated and his ashes buried in a nameless grave alongside his beloved brother, Kyle.
- "I know a lot of people, kid. Don't know you. Anybody heard the name John Connor? Well...we know one. I think you're going to be famous. My brother's back and you're wearing his coat."
- - Derek Reese. ("Born to Run")
After traveling forward in time with Catherine Weaver, John Connor encounters a band of resistance fighters led by Derek and Kyle Reese, along with a living Allison Young. None of the fighters in this new Timeline are aware of who John Connor is.
- Derek continues to favour the Beretta as his choice handgun.
- Despite being openly hostile towards Cameron in the first season and the first few episodes of Season Two, Derek appears to have mellowed somewhat to Cameron's presence. He is less hostile towards her and even teams up with her to help save John in Mexico, perhaps having finally accepted her usefulness as part of the team. He was also moved to tears upon watching Cameron performing ballet alone, and perhaps seeing this human side of Cameron is what motivated him to accept her.
- Derek's marksmanship is more apparent this season, as he is seen wielding a deadly sniper rifle with expert precision, despite its hefty size and obvious kickback. With the exception of Cameron, and perhaps John, Derek has the best aim in the group.
- Several hints hidden throughout the series suggests that Derek's father (or mother) might have been a Police officer, due to his otherwise unexplained knowledge of certain subjects. For example, during his interrogation of Charles Fischer, Derek noticed and recognised his tattoo ("Till the End of Time"/aka life sentence) as prison ink and later during his talk with Mr. Walsh, Derek spotted a ring on the man's finger and correctly identified it as a Cop's insignia.
- Unknown to Derek, in Jesse's future, she fell pregnant with his child, which she then lost over the course of her mission aboard the USS Jimmy Carter. Jesse tried to tell Derek this, but he refused to listen to her excuses before drawing his gun on her.
- Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
- Season 2
- "Samson & Delilah"
- "Automatic for the People"
- "The Mousetrap"
- "Goodbye to All That" (centric role)
- "The Tower Is Tall But the Fall Is Short"
- "Brothers of Nablus"
- "Mr. Ferguson is Ill Today"
- "Complications" (centric role)
- "Strange Things Happen at the One Two Point"
- "Alpine Fields" (centric role)
- "The Good Wound"
- "Desert Cantos"
- "Ourselves Alone"
- "Today Is The Day, Part 1"
- "Today Is The Day, Part 2"
- "To the Lighthouse"
- "Adam Raised a Cain"
- "Born to Run"
- Season 2