The UNSC prowler NightLight, nicknamed "coca-cola" by her crew for her shape, was not having the best of luck. The ship had just escaped from the battle over the planet Reach, and was literaly falling apart.
"Sir, we seem to have lost them. If it is ok with you, I suggest we send some longswords out and search for survivors." The AI Peacefull Loki said to the captain. "Also, the engines are down, and all weapon systems are offline." He added. The AI, was not as smart as Cortana, but not too far off. He often found the captain trusting the judgement of the AI better than his own, for he did not doubt it's capabilities, as he did his own.
"Sure, we need to find a larger ship that can repair us, and later on try to fight off this fleet orbiting Reach guerella style. Reach is proof that we are no match on open ground against the covenant. We must find a way to destroy or criple this fleet before they find Earth, or it will share the same fate." The captain was confident that there was a way to kill this fleet, but they will need a bigger ship to help us in doing so. Longswords dispatched sir." the AI reported. "hopefully they will have better luck than us"
"Good" and under his breath he added "They'll sure need it."
* * *
The holycon class cruiser Pillair of Autumn had just come out of a blind jump from Reach. It's commander, Captain Keys, was not sure what exactly he was looking at.
* * *
"Sir, one of the longswords has detected a distress call from a destroyer .12 lightyears away from here" Peaceful Loki announced. "They said the destroyer wasn't at Reach during the battle, so it is in good shape, but they have spotted an increased number of covenant ships in their sector and destroyed them, but dispite their victory they are worried that they will be hit by a coordinated attack." "try to get their coordinates from that signal, and ready the slipspace jump drives." captain Burns ordered. "We're gana need that destroyer intact for what I'm planning to do!"
"We have covenat ccs crusers coming in range within 10 minutes, they haven't spotted us yet" peaceful loki said. Everything was going as planned, better actually. Captain burns had gathered a force of 3 holycons, 2 destroyers, 4 marathons, and another prowler. Also, since he regrouped them, he was given command of operation Dud Doodoo. He would be safer hidden in his prowler, coordinating the attack too.
"Exiting slipspace in 5..." Peacefull loki said. Captain Burns opened the COM link to all the other ships in the fleet. "This is Captain Burns, prepare to give that convoy a taste of a big MAC!"
The captains followed his orders well.
At the exit of slipspace, the holycons and marathons opened fire on the closest of the ccs crusers in the 3 ship escort. It's sheilds shimmered as 2 MAC rounds impaled it at several thousand miles per hour. The other 3 scored direct hits, and completely destroyed it. only 1 ccs opened fire, and 2 streaks of plasma missed, but the third hit a holycon dead center. The ship was enveloped in fire, and no escape pods were launched.
The second volley was made up of 1 nuke, 3 MAC rounds, and a couple thousand tons of archer missles. The nukes came first, taking out the sheilds, and causing some hull damage. The MAC rounds penetrated the hulls and did some major damage. The archer missles finished the job, targeting critical points on the ccs crusers.
After it was over, only 1 ccs remained standing, but it was critically damaged. A holycon swiftly finished it off. The ship they were escorting was an assult carrier.
"All ships, open fire on that carrier, I want nothing but smoke left when you're done!" Burns ordered.
Just then the carrier opened fire, and plasma consumed 2 more ships. The remaining 6 ships charged at the carrier and fired all they had, this section of space was filled with flying MAC slugs, plasma, archer missles, and an accasional nuke. "Captain Burns" Captain Jensin, commander of the other prowler in the fleet adressed him. "I am going to drive this ship into the carrier with a nuke and detonate it from inside. I will launch all life pods from the ship, track them. I will stay behind with the ship, just make sure to track to ejected pods. My mind is made, I will not back down, Just get those sheilds down."
Burns was shocked.
He was brought back into reality when plasma cut through 3 more ships, reducing his fleet to half. "Understood" he answered. "All ships, concentrate on taking down their sheilds, then stand down." Each one of the ship's captains acknolaged his orders, and a new volley of MAC slugs got aquainted with the carrier's sheilds.
"The sheilds are down, I sudggest that you do whatever you are going to do quick." One of the ship's captains responded. "Carry on, God speed captain" burns said to the captain of the prowler. There was no response, but he had a visual. the prowler flew straight into a hole made by a MAC slug, and detonated. All pods were retreived, and the carrier was reduced to rubble.
* * *
The mission had been completed, but at a terrible cost. They were left with 3 ships plus his prowler, but they all would have died if it were not for captain jenings. The man was just another hero among the other millions of them that had died in this war.
"Sir, I have just recieved a transmission from the Pillair of Autumn. I will play it for you now." "We-..ome-......alien artifa-..Request assistance fro...nyone..." The transmission ended in static. "That is all I have before we lost signal." The AI reported. "We must frind them, can you pinpoint their location like you did before?" Burns asked him. "Negative, the signal is too weak, but I can locate their relative location, hopefully we can find them from there."
Captain keys' campaign had been going well. The master cheif and cortana had hit the covenant hard in numerous places, but they were still trying to peice together this mystery of what Halo was. The covenant had a large force above Halo, and unless something or someone came to their aid, they were not likely to win this. What they needed was a small task force, with a smart commander, that could reduce the amount of ships in orbit and send troops to assist them on the ground.
Then they might win.
They needed someone like his cousin, burns, but Keys had no idea if he was alive or not.
"Cortana to Keys" the AI said over their COM channel.
* * *
They had picked up 1 other ship, a frigate. Their force now consisted of 1 destroyer, 2 marathons, and 1 frigate, plus his NightLight. Soon though, hopefully they will have a new holycon among them, and a brilliant commander that would ensure them victory.
"Sir, we will be in slipspace for an estimated 5 hours, I recommend that you get some sleep." their AI said. "Alert me if anything happens while I am asleep, I want to be concious if my ship starts blowing up." Their ship had received some minor repairs from the engineers on the larger ones, but would need a shipyard to put her back into service after this. He layed down his head in his quarters, he shut his eyes, he slept, he dreamed.
He dreamed growing up on reach, a planet as brilliant as earth. He dreamed of playing with his cousin, now captain keys.
They were wrestling over who got to ride in his uncles civilan warthog first. He lost, of coures. He loved the warthog, it was the most stylish vehichle in all of reach. In all the galaxy even.
The two of them were like brothers, even though they were cousins. His parents had died on Harvest when he was very young while he was away on vacation at his uncles. The stay was permenant.
He wasn't treated like trash, his unle took good care of him, but he didn't love him nearly as much as he loved the present day captain keys, his son. Keys was in a military academy by the time Burns' parents died, but he had alot of free time. When harvest was attacked, he had gone off to fight and was never seen by Burns again.
He did know, however, that Keys was commanding a holycon class cruser. He was in the process of looking for Keys after he had joined up. He found several things, but the security and classification of everything in the military made it impossible to find him.
Burns had joined up 4 years ago, and was already captain of a ship. His military record was unmatched, even though he didn't belive in himself much, Keys had always told him he would have made a fine commander for his determination and intelect, but mainly because of his motivation and drive to destroy the covenant because of his parents, and his ability that came from his mom, the ability to see what had to be done, and therefore how to do it in any situation.
His only wish was that one day he would find his brother again, and then he realized, Keys must be an old man by now. It made things very strange for him.
* * *
The captain woke up. "Coming out of slipspace in 5 minutes" Peaceful Loki announced. "Sir" he added, as if forgetting. "You could have woken me up a bit sooner" He replied to the AI.
Burns got dressed and walked out onto the bridge. The officers soluted him, and then returned to their chores. Burns sat down in the Captain's chair, and veiwed the screen in front of him. "Exiting slipspace now Captain." The AI said. The phrase was used too often by the AI. "Ok loki" the captain said, a routine they had going. The space around them shifted into the space he was familair with. His stomach churned from the transition. He looked ahead in amazement. "It's a thin ring, nearly as big as a planet, just thin a hollow" he wispered to himself in disbelief. There was no way that was a natural formation. Him and his crew just stared at it with awe for an entire minute before Loki said "Stop daydreaming, we've got covenant ships coming in quick!"