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Fan Fiction

MOAB by Andres

The Mother of all Battles: Prologe.
Date: 15 April 2005, 5:42 AM

Somewhere in the Covenant controlled Space
High Charity
Ninth age of Reclamation

The Prophet hovered speedily over the purple floor, yellow beams of hot led randomly passed around him, the attackers were relentless on their task, the murder of him and the Destruction of the Covenant. "Go holiness we will hold them here!" screamed Nayase, his personal Sangheili guard Master. He pressed the lever on his console forward and accelerated away from his escorts and most importantly from the unseen pursuers.
       "Away sire, away!" the little Grunt passed him by growling in anger. He made a right turn by the painting of the former Prophet Joy.

       Something was not right.

       The corridor led to the hangar, and then yet there was a brick wall there. All the battle sounds had disappeared in the blink of an eye, He traversed right on his perfectly balanced vehicle, only footsteps creeping to his position echoed by the corner of the blocked corridor.

       "By the fair of the Brute!"
       The attacker was then revealed, it was a inferior being. A human. The eyes of the Creature flamed as it approached him, every step sounding rarely hard.
       "You mind this puke?" said the Human; he raised in his right hand the head of the purple Elite. "Argh!" it screamed as he attacked him.

"By the Forerunner!" the sweat had soaked his sleeping dress; he raised his fragile neck looking for his attacker. There was nothing to see on the dark room. Light flooded the room as Nayase entered room holding his Energy sword on his right arm.
       He was followed by two Grunts who entered the room with uncharacteristic coolness. "Is there something troubling you, great Holiness," said the Elite in his battle stance.
       "Oh no my dear protector, just a dark dream."
       The Elite took a long look at his Master, he bowed, "yes, oh lord."

The chattering of the aristocrats filled the Chamber before the Council was adjourned. The Prophet Blossom hovered in his chair over the sacred floor of the high ranking Prophets thinking of the dream of the previous night. He was a religious being, and for what he knew this was an omen, an epiphany on times to come.
       The room silenced as the announcer walked into the Chamber. "His greatness, Master of Covenant's Army, Ornus' Kapaffi."
       The Golden Elite gained entree into the Council's Chamber, the Sangheili and Prophets on the stands on his flank burst into cheers. The Veteran warrior was not flattered or moved by the celebration of him, he climbed the stairs into the podium; just by the way he walked it was clear. He was a born warrior.
       Blossom raised his hand and the room silenced immediately.
       "Your great Covenants, I here bring my unworthy presence into your holy room worthy of believe," he knelt and bowed.
       "What brings you here," began Blossom with his old and tired voice. "Our great warrior."
       "The Forerunners again had showed their guidance in this Holy crusade to eradicate the Human infection." He raised his head proudly, "we have found an infested planetary System."
       The Elites and Prophets in the room silently chattered, approval was the tone in the room.
       "I'm here to plea our case, an attack to clean the System."
       "Aye, let's clean it!" screamed a random Prophet; the room erupted in cheers of approval and happiness.
       "Order," said Blossom, the room immediately settled.
       "The council will on a closed extraordinary discussion decide the most prudent course of action."

The decision was unanimous, or at least in theory. "Oh Yasame, I'm worried."
       The Elite snapped into alert, "is there a threat against you, holy one?"
       "No," he looked at the Elite, "but I think the next move of our Covenant, will be."

Change of Command.

1946h, January 16, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Planet Omega. Joint Forces Command Center.
Big Horn Continent.

The voices echoed in the hall as the crowd vacated the conference room. The beautiful Miss Margaret Gallagher leaned against the wall of the white corridor as the unpleased crowd walked past her discussing the unsuccessful briefing by the new theatre Commander. She paid no attention to the rambling and complains of the high and middle ranking military and politicians for she knew the men, privately.
       A young officer walked by the wide doors of the room, he noticed the woman gracefully leaning by the wall. He smiled.
       "Now that went nice," said the young men sarcastically.
       "So I've heard," she said sarcastically, or better said, with no feeling at the young Navy Lieutenant.
       "He asked for you miss," he smiled, "He is really mad. Will you please follow me to his office?"
       She winked at him, and followed him down the long, white corridor.

The two Spec. Ops. escorts snapped into attention as the Lieutenant walked out of the elevator . He pay no attention at the gesture, the new Navy did not salute while on natural gravity.
       "He is waiting for you ma'am," said the soldier, the only thing moving in his rigid body were his lips. He turned around and placed his thumb on the scanner on the doorknob, the door partially opened with a loud clack. She smiled at the soldier as she entered the white room; Margaret detected a faint smile on the soldiers face as she gracefully walked past the man.
       She entered the flashy room with the same grace as always and there in the luxurious office she found the men of the hour. The old Marine, now a Marshal and Politician, shoved paperwork, the thing he hated most about his new job. The man was only forty three, yet he looked older, his standard military haircut was of shiny silver, one gray hair after every Covenant he had killed, or so he said. Yet the most flashing feature was the large scar that decorated his right cheek, the story of the origin of the mark was a mystery, and so the man as a whole was.
       "Good office," Margaret said as she sat on the comfortable leather chair, gently crossing her legs. The office was indeed good, ornamented with oak walls and roof it looked like a president's like a King's office, not a bare Marshal's. The flashiest of it all was the desk, a custom made marvel made of the finest wood ever discovered by humanity, over it hundreds of work orders, OPORDs and authorizations for different Operation Plans to be signed. The planet of witch the shiny wood came had already been turned to glass by the Covenant, another remembrance of the hatred inside him.
       "Sure," said the old men as he carefully read a contact report by one of his ships. "God I'm deep on it," he threw the paper into the desk and sighed, "I'm awfully pissed." "Lamp of," his green reading lamp died.
       "Don't like the privileges?" asked Margaret as she leaned closer to the table.
       "You know me better than that, I love all the fancy crap. I hate the shitheads in high places."
       "Yes, I do know you better than that."
       She was clear in something, in peacetime the seasoned man would have never reached his current position. He had a characteristic that the aristocracy did not like; he was completely blunt, rude and poorly educated, and more importantly there was no room for bureaucratic bullshit in his mind, but there was a reason they chosen him to defend this particular system, the most comercially important in the UNSC. He was a born killer, a fine soldier and warrior who would do anything to achieve his goal. He knew only one thing, victory. Yet the only thing he had met in thirty years was bitter defeat, at strategic levels at least.
       He turned his comfortable chair to face the view. The city dusk was the only thing he enjoyed in the day. His first day as Commander was disastrous. In the transfer of command ceremony he had screamed "incompetent" to the Sailor who dropped his saber. Later in the press conference he lost his temperament on a journalist who asked the wrong questions at the right time. The low point of the day came at the briefing with his staff; he was passively criticized by not revealing his main plan, his real plan, to defend the System. Yet it did not bothered him, if the Chain of Command chose him for this job, especially at this point of the war, they had confidence in him. An in politics for the Administration to trust someone was a weird fact.
       He turned his chair to face the beautiful young woman, he contemplated her short brown hair, dazzling blue eyes and tempting figure. "You are beautiful."
       "I know," she said with a smile, "what happened at the briefing?"
       "I didn't tell them my plan."
       "Why?" she said, interested in what the misterious men had to say.
       He made a forced smile, "if they knew my plan, they'd can me."
       "Oh yes," she said joke fully, "the mysterious Marshal Andryid Domanenko and his secrets again."
       He looked with the look of a killer at the woman. Every man who met him was at some extent scared at the sight of his piercing eyes, "this time. I mean it. It's time for someone who had the balls to do the right, better, the wrong thing."

The Mother of All Battles: First Patrol
Date: 20 April 2005, 12:03 AM

"Something must be left to chance; nothing is sure in a sea fight above all." Fleet Admiral Sir Horatio Nelson, Before the Battle of Trafalgar.

0126h, January 17, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Humanity Class Cruiser NGC-1
On patrol on outer sector Papa Prime

The buzzer on the intercom awoke him. He rubbed his eyes and slowly rose to a sitting position on his confined bed. He enabled the intercom right by his pillow.
"I hope you have some good news, who ever you are." He said after a long sigh.
       "Don't know how you feel about it, sir, but we have tasking from Fleet Command." He recognized the voice; she was his tactical battle officer.
       "That's good Sarah; see you in ten, star waking the people up."

The sliding doors opened after the retinal scan. "Captain on the deck," called a sailor as he entered the bridge, the young Spaceman First Class was waiting for him right by the door. He had in his right hand what he needed badly, coffee.
       "I have the con." He said immediately.
       "Captain has the con, aye sir," acknowledged the young woman as she stepped out of the command chair in the front the massive screen.
       He took a long zip from the mug, "oh yea," he grunted, "That's the shit."
       The Lieutenant Commander laughed at the comment. "You have a problem with that sir."
       "I sure do miss," the footsteps echoed as he moved in the silent room, only enough men were there to keep the Cruiser running. The first this he did was look at the hologram, the epicenter of the room, a map that displayed the system and all of the known ships positions in it.
       The bridge was the most important room of the ship; ironically it was the smallest room of it. To the left and right of the room there were four ramps that led to corridors that went by the square shaped walls of the room. All the ships controls, from the helm to division commanders had a private command station in witch they could relay the orders given directly by the Skipper.
       "Status?" asked the Captain. He sat on the Command chair, a broad leather marvel. A large console in front of him gave access to any part of the ship and displays.
       "Comms," on the screen on the panel appeared the face of the young Lieutenant in charge of communication, "what is the transmission?"
       "Sir, I'm sending it to you, it is for your eyes only." The face of the kid disappeared out of the screen. A message popped on the computer screen in front of him

From: Fleet Command, through Cruiser Squadron Thirteen Sector Lira Omega.
To: NGC-1
Time: 0125h, January 17, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Effective: Immediately.

1.-Convoy proceeding into Lira Omega System from ENTRY ROUTE SIX.
2.- NGC-1 is to head at best speed to intercept Convoy designated CHARLIE FOUR TANGO and escort to PAPA NINE THREE.
3.-Remain undetected until positive VID confirmation of the Convoy.
4.-Convoys are hauling a class ROMEO cargo. Protection is of the utmost importance.
5.- Whispers on ZULU-THETA-BETA-ONE-SIX Listening Post AO, be advised.
Delete message after reviewed as per Cole Protocol.


"That's simple enough," he finished his coffee and left the chair to walk the center of the hologram. "Magnification on our Area of Operations and the objective zone," the projectors around the Hologram modified and showed the new area. He looked at the coordinates, only a star was in that two thousand kilometer area. "NAV get over here."
       "NAV checking in, aye sir," a young man walked out of the left ramp and to the Hologram holding a clipboard on his right arm.
       The Captain nodded at the young men. "NAV, I have a course for you to plot under the following parameters." He pulled a pen from his front pocket of his gray field uniform and drew a line from the ships to the little star passing by several asteroids and stars. "I want you to get us there at best speed, but on a tight grip on the electronic signature. I don't want to be detected, and that includes our on ships and spook gear."
       There was a slight pause as the man looked at the route, he tapped the commands into the clip board and got some rough calculations. "Aye sir, no problem. I think if we are to achieve to this parameters we have too reduce reactor output to sixty seven percent sir, just bellow the line on witch our systems start to show on the electronic spectrum. That is just a preliminary calculation; I have to check with my people. That way we will be under the layer and still get there within the hour or so, depending, of course, on a series of factors I am sure you know."
       He took in mind the advice for his NAV officer, he had recruited the young men and trained him, he was proud of the professionalism displayed by the man even for the most basic procedures. "Aye NAV. You do that, I want you to take your time planning this; we have to be undetected from here to there." He mad a gesture with his hands, signaling the importance of the fact. "Meanwhile I'm going for a walk around the main stations. You now how to reach me," the man nodded, snapped his hells together and returned to his station speedily.
       "Sarah," the young lady had already crept up with him, "Go and wake up Commander Fritz. Get him to the bridge, you have the con meanwhile. I'm going to make a surprise inspection of the ship."
       "Aye sir," she nodded. "I'll get you a ride."

Captain Massimo Rossini waited in the long corridor that ran across the circular shark ship. His ride was in route to take him to the sub-stations of the ship, Electronics and all its subdivisions, Weapons, Radar, Communications, AirWing and the largest one, Logistics. He took the little time at hand to reflect, even in the circumstances how lucky he was to be here. His Cruiser was the first of the new generation of ships to enter the Navy after years of development using both new human and captured Covenant technologies.
       The most important and most publicized feature of the vessel was the armor. A new alloy of Covenant capture steels and a human alloy of tungsten, titanium and deplete uranium was formed. On the outside of the hull were heavy explosive blocks designed to blast away the gasses of the plasma. It was at least invulnerable to most human MAC guns. The main part of the ship was a large oval shaped rifle like superstructure, to port and starboard were two rectangles. The main nozzles for the powerful engines, they could be vectored by the helm, achieving unprecedented agility for both Covenant and Humans. A masterpiece the Cruiser was.
       His ride arrived, an electric car. On it was the Marine contingent commander senior NCO, CSM Franco Russo. "Sir!" he said as he pulled the car at a stop right next to the captain.
       "To the weapons station son," he said as he jumped into the passenger seat.
       "Son?" he asked, "I'm older than you sir."

The walk along the ship went crystal. Everything was in order, just as he liked it. He waited for the bridge sliding doors to open.
       "Captain on deck!" the sailors snapped into attention.
       "At ease," he said as he made his way into the now crowded room, every station was manned at Battle Stations level, surprisingly because he had not ordered that.
       "Sir, the ship is on station, all systems up and running, reactor is a seventy two percent," said the Executive Officer.
       "Aye," he acknowledged, "I have the con." He sat in the command chair.
       "Captain has the con, aye sir."
       "Sir," said Sarah, "expected Time of Arrival of the convoy is thirty mikes."
       "Aye," he paused to check the different displays on his console, it was all green. "Maneuver, reactor to fifty percent." Fifty percent was barley to keep the ship running.
       "Aye sir," said Hans, the Maneuver officer on his on the deck bellow the command chair, he relayed the data to his subordinates at the engine room.
       He walked by the men in the room and into the hologram. He analyzed the situation just as he had done in previous times. The Convoy had the order to enter normal space at certain coordinates. But his experiences dictated that a he had to be careful in this situation, especially in this situation. Something would jump into normal space in that area, there was no way of knowing what would, even with the orders at hand.
       "Maneuver, ahead two thirds. Helm come right to course two-seven-niner by elevation one-zero-three," he sighed. "Battle stations."
       The Master Chief of the ship grabbed a mike in his station next to the command chair. "Attention, Attention. All hands man your battle stations. This is not a drill. Condition Three, I repeat this not a drill." A loud alarm echoed through the ship several times. "Battle stations!"
       The ship's layout was on a screen by the station of the Master Chief, on the compartments red lights turned to green. "Battle stations, aye sir," said his master chief after the last red light turned to green in each compartment of the ship.
       "Air ops, con here." He said randomly, the Computer automatically connected him into it.
       "Con, Air ops."
       "How soon can you put a package at these coordinates," the captain signaled to a random location in space.
       The Marine Colonel rubbed his chin, "I can launch a four ship in five, and they could be there in ten. All of them Speeders."
       Speeders were the new interceptors of the fleet, the next generation of planes in the ship. "Great. I want you to prepare a bomber package too. ASAP Todd."
       "Copy," not the aye the Navy was used to, the coms went dead.
       "Con, NAV here. At the current speed, heading and elevation we are on a collision course with the star, ETA eight mikes."
       "Aye, maintain heading. I want to hide ourselves there;" he signaled to the ring of the star, "the radiation will cover us for the time being."
       "Weapons load the MACs and remove locks from the Longbow missiles batteries on the bow. Take us to Condition one on all arms and ammunition," he checked the output screen on his console. "All unnecessary equipment is to be shut down; we are now at Electronic Emissions Control."
       "Aye sir," acknowledged his XO. The buzzing sound of the light generations going down echoed through the ship, red lights came on silently.
       "Sir, flight deck is ready to launch," said the XO.
       "They are clear to launch." He then began with a series of orders that were hard to follow. "COM, report that we are on station to HQ." "Bring us to Condition one on all compartments." "Prepare the boarding parties to search the ships of the Convoy as per Protocol." "Bring the Air Wing to ready five, and star sending probes to all hemispheres." He exhaled; the men were having trouble keeping with his orders, but he loved the bridge at full operations. "And this is important," the men stopped to work, the tension was palpable, "coffee."
       The men laughed, that was the reaction that Rossini wanted, to relax his men.

"Sir, ETA is under one minute."
       "Aye he said," the ship now lay static only two hundred thousand kilometers from the star. At the rally point fifteen fighters loitered waiting for the Convoy and in the flight deck four drop ships carrying a Company of Marines waited for the order to board and inspect the ships for contraband, or the real reason, Covenant.
       "Slipspace ruptures bearing zero-three-two by elevation one-two-four."
       "Center screen," the Captain said, hiding the nervousness he felt.
       Nine groups of green dots filled the empty space, very close to each other, five hundred thousand kilometers away. "Radar, report when you have con-"
       "Radar contact!" screamed an officer on a station bellow the chair.
       "Con, radar" called the young NCO on the station on the level under the bridge, "classify contacts as Sierra one to nine." There was a pause as the ships materialized, "two Diamond class frigates, one Gator class destroyer and six freighters, it matches the number of ships Fleet Command reported."
       "What's the cargo?" asked his XO standing next to him with both his arms closed.
       The Captain felt a slight pause on the operations shortly after he pronounced word.
       "Con, COM here. I have the destroyer White on live feed."
       "Aye, patch them through."
       "Aye sir."
       "This is UNSC Destroyer white. Uploading identification cod-"
       "Transient! Transient! Enemy radar spikes bearing zero-one-five by elevation two-niner-eight, no radar contact!" reported the Electronic Warfare officer
       "Oh god," heard Rossini over the radio, the last person to ever hear from the White. The destroyer had no time to react. Two spectacular explosions filled the empty space forming momentary stars in the dark void.
       "Reactor one hundred percent, all ahead flank speed. Bring all systems online. Helm, take us to bearing zero-one-two by elevation one-two-zero, right between the Convoy and the incoming fire," he paused and looked at the screen again. "any contacts?"
       There was a four second pause, "Sierra two and nine are gone! I have three targets, they just entered normal space, designated Charlie one through three, one is classified as a Rosary class Destroyer, two and three are not in the database. Radar and tonnage analysis suggest a Prowler or lighter class vessels," the coldness of the voice of the Lieutenant surprised the Captain.
       The Captain rubbed the back of his head. "Helm, take us perpendicularly to the destroyer," he pressed a handle with his feet, the chair turned to face the hologram. "Status on the front MACs?"
       "All four main Magnetic Accelerator Cannons are loaded, muzzles are not exposed," reported Douglas the weapons officer.
       The four main MACs were at the front of the oval ship. The bore of the cannon was hidden behind large, armored hatches to cover them while they were not in use.
       "Expose the muzzles." The ship began to shake as the massive hydraulic arms moved the hatches, exposing the one hundred meters muzzles.
       "Guns exposed and hot," reported the Wep.
       "Aye," he didn't have to ask his weapons officer.
       "Fire solutions on Charlie one, I have MAC one through four locked and ready to fire." The young lieutenant had his men calculate the solution and for the logical target, the Destroyer.
       "Cancel that. Lock one and four on Charlie two and MAC two and three on Charlie three," he looked carefully at the hologram. "Launch battery one and six of Longbow missiles on and oblique flight path to Charlie one, make them go behind it in a semicircle with respect to our position."
       The weapons officer looked puzzled at his screen. "Do it Lieutenant-" "Transient! Transient! Enemy plasma turrets are hot," the Electronic Warfare officer paused for a second, "red hot."
       "Literally," said the XO, still standing like a rock next to him.
       On the display the three small dots turned to red torches, bellow them labels indicated their designation, heading and speed. "What the-"murmured Rossini, the closest Covenant ship to the Convoy literally disappeared from view under a cloud of dust. The label was still there, "can anyone explain what happened?"
       "Sir, the UNSC ships escorting the Convoy are engaging the Covenant. I can only guess that the wreckage of the ship is still there, not the ship, it confuses the software," began the Radar officer with his usual long explanations, "damn it." That's what war do to some men. Thought the Captain.
       "Aye," the Captain said.
       "Sir they are spiking on us," said his electronic warfare officer. The Covenant had detected the presence of the ship and was now trying to get a firing solution.
       "Ok," Rossini said doubtfully. It took them a long time to find them, he was lucky for that.
       "Sir the enemy has gone cold, transient stopped."
       That was a first for the Captain, the Covenant sparing a target to go for another one. It must be that the Covenant commander was puzzled by this new rare ship, a good target for a promotion, what an arrogant bastard. Or at least he thought.
       "Wow." He recognized the voice, it was his EW officer's voice. "They can't seem to lock on us!"
       Several Thumps echoed in the hull as the Longbow missiles ejected from their pods.
       "Sir. Seraphs are deploying from their decks," a tense three seconds pause followed. "Fifty three Contacts inbound. Plasma turrets are getting hot."
       "Sir, on my authority I'm releasing the AirWing," said Air Ops over the intercom, Sixty fighters exited the launching bay bellow the belly of the ship.
       "Fire solution?"
       "Charlie two is locked, ready to fire at your command."
       "Match designated bearings and fire MAC one and four."
       The ship violently shook as the five hundred thousand ton depleted uranium darts were fired from the vessel. "One and four fired! Smooth trajectory to Charlie two on initial flight, estimated flight time is seven seconds."
       The room was filled with beeps, dongs and bells, warning sounds as the Covenant acquired a ballistic solution on the Cruiser. "Vampire! Vampire! Inbound plasma torpedoes!"
       "Divert! Divert!" screamed the Captain, thereby releasing authority to the Helm to maneuver.
       The Helm slammed the rudder right and down, he broke a glass pad on his console revealing a series of buttons, he pressed one of them. A thruster ignited in the stern of the vessel and violently accelerated twice the max speed of the engines.
       The helm patiently waited until the four plasma torpedoes were dangerously close to make his move.
       "Helm hit the front thruster now!" screamed the Captain as an idea flashed on his mind. The helm was paralyzed as he heard those dangerous words. "Stop the fucking ship man!"
       The thruster just below the cockpit exploded, the Helm pressed a emergency button and the engines died. The ship came to an abrupt stop, the ship shook violently throwing items in every direction. Yet the move worked, the four plasma torpedoes streaked rapidly past the front the ship.
       "We are clear, all systems are green," said his action officer.
       "Sir our two MAC rounds struck Charlie two amid ships. Displaying on Camera now," he would no time to do that task.
       "Vampire! Plasma torpedo coming directly from the-"

A giant hammered the ship hovering in space. An unseen plasma torpedo struck the ship from above. The Captain was the only man in the room who was strapped on his chair. In the turmoil he made out the outlines of the men flying around the bridge.
       "Report! Report!" he screamed to no avail. He was not sure if anyone had even heard him, between the sounds of the plasma hammering the ship and the trembling it was like being on a blender.
       "Helm, stern and bow and centerline thrusters!" There was nothing to do; the ship fell uncontrollably into the void.


The ship partially stabilized after the hand of a lucky man slammed the emergency button; men flew in every direction in the bridge as the ship came into an abrupt stop.
      "Report!" only moans and cries of pain were heard through the cabin.
      "Sir." Said a weak voice in the Helm stations, and it was not the helm. It was the XO. He held into the helms chair, and was barely recognizable, his face was shattered by glass and blows. His last effort was to activate the thrusters, he barely did it. He simply smashed the console activating all the emergency thrusters. "Tell..." he coughed a large pool of blood, "family." The man collapsed on the chair.
      The Captain had no time to help the man. His bridge officers were all scattered and wounded, aya from their stations. He was forced to do something, highly illegal in combat, a direct violation of the Cole protocol. He activated the ships A.I.
      A small dog appeared on a hologram next to him. "Hi Skipper," said the dog as it scratched his left ear. "What can... rrrrgh," it snapped into attack position, "Covenant forces detected. Forty three Covenant Seraphs class fighters six thousand kilometers overhead, they are in dogfight with our planes. If I may remind you are in violation of the Cole protocol by activating me."
       "No covenant ships? And I know what I'm doing."
       "Oh yes, three wreckages partially functional. There are also four wreckages of UNSC ships. I missed something good"
       "Thanks Pommel," he stood from his chair, the engagement had been won. Yet, this was no time for celebration. The first thing he did was to check his staff on the deck bellow.
       He pressed a button on his panel. "Damage control parties to the bridge."
       "Pommel, contact fleetcom and report the situation, and please old friend could you please show me what the hell happened."
       He barked and swung his tail. "While your helm preformed a rather predictable maneuver the two MAC rounds from tubes one and four slammed into the target designated Charlie two, a small Corvette. It was a major overkill. The Destroyer accelerated to destroy the ship, after that unexpected move of halting in the middle of the fight; it fired a plasma torpedo at point blank range. The armor absorbed the hit. Then it's rather unusual but missiles fired from this ship struck Charlie one on the stern, the shields stood no chance. Quite a remarkable move Captain."
       "Damn... it worked."

0346h, January 16, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Planet Omega. Situation Room, Big Horn Military Complex
Big Horn Continent.

The Marshal arrived fifteen minutes earlier than the Officer of watch predicted, he didn't mind. He liked to keep the men on their toes. "What is so important that you had to drag me out of bed Commodore," the men nearly dropped his cup of coffee once he heard the intimidating voice of Marshal Domanenko.
       "Sir!" he immediately turned to face him. He felt the how the look of the Marshal went right through him, only the ones with the experience of Domanenko, knew that it did look into a pe5rsons soul. The Marines called it the mile long look, a result of intense combat, or more precisely been deep on shit.
       "Talk to me commodore."
       "Sir," he swallowed. "A refugee convoy scheduled into the system was tracked, shadowed and attacked by a small Covenant force."
       The Marshal kept his eyes on the Commodore, he did not blink, like if he was possessed. "Casualties?"
       "A frigate and three of the freighters were destroyed," he showed a faint smile. "Luckily I tasked the Enterprise for a late escort for the Convoy into the system. An enemy force consisting of a Destroyer and Two Prowlers were effectively destroyed. I think you should read the partial report."
       The Marshal nodded with a cynic smile. "Ok I'll be at my office."
       The Commodore looked puzzled. "You don't have one... sir."
       "I'll borrow yours then," he didn't joke, he looked at his with the same, scary eyes.
       "Aye sir..."

four hours later

He again checked the move the Skipper of the Enterprise devised; it was an awesome tactical move. I took some balls, which were the type of men he was looking for. He noticed during the course of the morning that he came here half dressed as a Marshal and half in his PJs. Fuck it.
       He walked out of the office to the Situation room. He could not believe his eyes. The Navy Chiefs of Staff were there, drinking coffee and joyfully chatting after the "victiory". Yet there was a job to be done here and for the looks of it, there was not much time.
       "Listen up!"
       The men and woman in the room turned to face the angry men in his pajamas bursting frantically out of the room.
       "What the fuck is going on here?"
       An Admiral began "we beat the Covenant, sir that calls for a..."
       "What the hell are you talking about? The Covenant will come looking for 'em in no time. There are possibly tons of Covenants coming here."
       Heads lowered in the room. "It's time; we have a job to do here."

0802, January 17, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Humanity Class Cruiser NGC-1
En route to Omega.

The Captain watched the space on the display the wreckages of Human and Covenant's crafts littered the once clean view of space. "Aye Duke."
       "Con- Radar. We have the recovery units passing us by on port side; they are inbound to the battle zone at one-niner-zero by elevation three-zero-zero. They are diverting from the route originally planned."
       "Aye, Comms, con here."
       "Aye sir," answered the Communications officer, "they are already hailing us. The CO of the party wants to talk to the skipper. That is you."
       "Aye son, patch them through."
       The face of the Captain of the Frigate appeared on the display in front of the captain. He froze for three seconds.
       "Now that is some kick ass ship!"
       The crew celebrated the cry of the Captain. He could not blame them for it though, for the first time in the Covenant war humanity had won, not by a fancy tactic or large numbers but by pure hardware. An act never before witnessed in the UNSC.
       "Thanks Captain, my crew and I appreciate the gesture. For now I suggest we leave it at that since we don't know who is listening."
       "Oh yes sir. I get it, sorry for that. I'm new to this."
       "Sir!" screamed his comm officer. "Receiving priority Alpha transmission from Fleet Command! Sounds bad sir!"

       About time they came at it again.

       "Aye son, patch them through."

The Mother of All Battles: Bombed by Seraphs
Date: 28 April 2005, 7:37 PM

How could they possibly be Japanese planes?
— Admiral Husband E. Kimmel

1425, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Space Warning and Control System Craft
On Combat Air Patrol over the Planet Ocean Prime

The red light on the display made his head snap into the screen. "That can't be right," the young Petty Officer tapped two quick commands into his keyboard. The screen zoomed into the electronic "noise" on the far side of the system. By a star a small blanket of radar jamming clouded the radars waves, what troubled the PO was that it was a jamming that was not on the ships database, thence the UNSC did not know about it.
       He keyed the mike, "Lieutenant, you should come and see this."
       The Lieutenant made his way between the two rows of chairs of the craft's belly; he placed his hand on the Petty Officer's left shoulder. "What's up?"
       The Lieutenant took a long look at the screen, analyzing every part of the electronic cloud; it was nothing like he had seen before. Unlike radar jamming it had no pattern, just "puffs" of electronic interference on the screen. He walked to another station, Infrared Scanning. "What do you have?"
       "Well sir, I don't know," he cleared the view for the Lieutenant to see. It was like a small star. "Print it."
       The Petty Officer tapped a button on his screen, automatically a shred of paper popped out of the printer next to the screen. The Lieutenant grabbed it and slowly read its content.
       "How can that be?" it was not right. It could not be possible, "plasma?" he whispered. The sailors in the room turned to see him. "Covenant? Here?" he slowly thought the situation through, "no way."

1525, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Ocean Prime, Ocean Continent, City of Caribbean
Fifth floor of Preston Cole High School

This teacher was a moron, or so the kid thought. He struggled to remain awake but it was undeniable hard, the math class was too boring. His eyelids closed and opened sporadically, his head stumbled from right to left as he struggled to keep it right. Before he knew it his eyelids closed and didn't open again for the rest of the class.

       Fifteen minutes later voices woke him; he rubbed his eyelids as they opened and leaned on the back of his chair, he stretched his back and arms, and noticed that the kids were not on their chairs. What was happening? He didn't know but all the kids of his class were over by the window staring outside, talking low among them selves; curiously the teacher was not around. He got up from his chair and made his way through the desks of the class room onto the opposite corner, he tapped a kid on the shoulder.
       "Sup Tom?" he asked a kid of his class, Tom turned around surprised that there was one kid on the school that did not know what was happening. "Look," he grabbed him by the shoulder and walked him to the window. He had to stand on his toes to be able to watch the window, only the city of Caribbean was on his view, basically a large, unindustrialized town, hundreds of red rooftops to see.
       "I see nothing dude," he rubbed his hair and began to turn, Tom was undeniably stronger than him, he pressed his hand against his chest and signaled to the sky. Then he saw it, hundreds of tear drops descended on the planet covering the bright light of Lira Omega, they dove until the horizon and disappeared in the distant blue, thousands of them. "How long has this been going on?" asked Kenny, Tom turned to face him right next to him, "about ten minutes or so, teach' left to see what was that. I think god is crying."
       He had purged out all the fear of his mind by years of suffering because of his brothers. The kids left the room and joined the torrent of kids running to the stairs of the basement. He was left alone, just as he liked to be; he turned around and leaned against the wall of the window and simply watched.
       From the fifth floor of the School the city looked like if it was any normal day, there was nothing to be seen out of the ordinary except, perhaps, the shade generated by the teardrops descending entering the planet. Then it happened. The air raid alarm resonated through speakers in the city; the people stopped their cars, exited and ran to the nearest buildings to hide in the shelters bellow the structures. That was not a first sight for Kenny; it was practiced constantly in order to save lives.
       Dozens of columns of smoke rose to the sky behind the blocks of buildings in the general direction of Fort Caribbean; a large contrail formed beneath the missiles as the disappeared onto the sky. It had cleaned all doubts; a massive planetary invasion was taking place. The sound of the anti aircraft batteries firing reverberated as they fired in the buildings around the city sending yellow beams into the sky until the eye can see. Yet with all this, Kenny didn't move. The teardrops then appeared on the sky to the north from the opposite side of the others descending previously, hundreds in a tight pack, the human fire caused hundreds of small explosions of the formation.
       Then a large blue cloud replaced the black one. It was not known to him then, but on the noses of the Seraphs plasma torpedoes began to charge. He could be fearless, but he was not stupid. He turned around and through the already opened lane between the desks and left the room, he did a right turn. There was a girl lying on the cold floor with her hands covering her head, Kenny crept up on her.
       "What is up with you?" he asked in a not so gently way.
       "I'm doing... the thing for emergencies," the young girl said referring to the drills.
       "That won't..." he was interrupted by a series of loud explosions. The hallway felt like if it was thrown to the sky and dust slowly entered the room. He was instinctively over the girl to protect her from the falling glass from the hall's lights.
       The explosions had ceased but it still felt like is everything was shaking; it was the effect of the shock he had just suffered. He could not move but he was going to do it whatever the cost. He grabbed the girl by the shoulder and dragged her to a nearby room, looking for shelter in the awful fright of being bombed by Seraphs.

1528, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
On Combat Air Patrol over Ocean Prime

The Elite piloting the Seraph made a mistake worthy of a rookie. He made a tight loop, making him loose all the speed and energy, putting him nearly stationary in the air, an easy target for the old Longsword. The pilot triggered both 140mm rotary guns and seven hundred HEI rounds flew towards the Covenant Fighter-bomber. The shields turned silver then failed. The teardrop shaped craft turned into two pieces of a heart descending like a meteorite into somewhere in the planet.
       "That's a kill, you have him," called the ground controller in a cold voice, too many men had died in the massive air battle.
       "Roger." Major Frank "The Tank" Kramer checked the ammo display on the Multi Function Displays by his knees in the small cockpit of the Longsword fighter. He was almost clean, only a full magazine of five hundred 140mm rounds remained; it was not enough to keep him in the fight they were loosing. "I'm clean," he sighed and pressed the knobs on the navigation screen, he moved the finger over the gel and the picture moved, he enabled a live data feed, "requesting vector to home base, and I'm Clear to upload NAV data."
       "Roger that," a full three second pause followed as the female controller took a pause to plot the course, "uploading."
       A NAV marker appeared on his HMD, he enabled the autopilot for the thirteen minutes trip at mach 12. Finally the Major had some time to relax in the cold cockpit of his fighter; he was surrounded by displays and consoles that displayed all the data he needed. "Roster," he voice activated the flight roster screen. The battle had started at long ranges, the Longswords fired their long raged missiles outside the atmosphere, then on the four hundred fighters turned into the planet and dragged the fight into the atmosphere where the humans had the edge, mainly because the training on atmospheric conditions. Off all the planes had scrambled from his Guard Base to meet the Covenant all were shot down except him.
       He looked to the right of the cockpit of the planet. For some reason this planetary chain had their planets with eighty percent water portion. The Waterway Continent of ocean prime had the size of Australia back at earth; it was the only continent sized land of the planet, the rest of the planet were a series of Island chains through the massive oceans. He loved his home planet.
       "Zebra one switching control, contact homeplate one-zero. Good day," said the female controller emotionless.
       "That's a Roger and thanks," he uploaded the data into the COM console on his right armrest. "Homeplate this is Zebra one, checking in, over."
       The only response he got was static. According to the NAV display he was only two thousand miles away just on the verge of radio contact, but he knew to expect the worst. His home base was on the small town of Riverbed, on the outskirts of the city of Waterway, a peaceful town that depended mostly on tourism. He was a member of the Air Home Guard, he was a lawyer and flying was just a hobby, until now, as He was now fighting for his life and family.
       It was clear for him since the war started, his village would be attacked as soon as the Covenant invaded or glassed the planet. It was next to the largest Reserve base in the system, over five hundred ships.
       The inertia dragged him forward as the aircraft slowed to a bare two hundred knots in less than thirty seconds. His body went numb when his airfield came into view. Everything was set a fire, from the runway to the Hardened Hangars were embedded in blue flames, but the worst thing by far was his town, aflame too, every house and car, his body paralyzed for a full minute as the autopilot loitered over the town.

He had to get down checking his family.

He activated the onboard AI. "Get me a lading spot."
       "Roger," the AI construct changed rapidly the screen on his NAV console, "There, " it pointed to a clearing by the highway a bare ten miles from the city.
       "Ok, bring her down." The AI selected a small parry ten miles from the village, a perfect place with a ravine to hide his craft. The AI landed the ship on the middle of the field and taxied the craft onto the hiding spot. The pilot turned the engines down, the roar of the powerful engines died with a soft whistle, as soon as they stopped the cockpit opened and the warmer air mixed with the colder atmosphere generated by the aircraft.
       The stairs to the left of the cockpit dropped. He punched the seatbelt on his chest and he was free. Frank checked bellow his chair and pulled a backpack, the survival kit. He struggled to get out of the cockpit and jumped to the ground. According to his training he had to find a good spot to transmit but first he had to check his inventory. He opened the kit an lay it on the ground, he pulled out three magazines for his SMG, four Magazines for his standard issue pistol, two smoke grenades, four MREs and a paper map.
       "Bummer," he sighed. He checked his paper map; if it was up to date the location was almost in the middle of the highway. Two choices, the city or the town, the town was his home and base, the choice was obvious. Yet he had seen it from the sky, the base was neutralized and the town was a fire. If the base was neutralized there was no way to inform the city of the situation.
       Then the sad memory then hit him. His family was on the village. All the tactical analysis was now rubbish, the decision was made.

The Major slowly crept out of the bushes and onto the highway, unsuspecting of what may lay behind. His only clue was the smell of rotting flesh and a column of smoke. He slowly raised his head; he found the source of the smoke and flesh, it was a massive car crash or more accurately a slaughter possibly caused by the Covenant air. Both lanes, separated by cement racks, were cramped by cars until the eye can see.
       He knew one thing; one of those cars may help him to reach the village, thirty miles away. He said a long Ok and moved for a closer looked.

All the cars were on flames or burned to their skeletons.

"Is anyone ok?" he screamed. After ten seconds there was no response, in the whole river of colors there were possibly no survivors. He walked by the burned fields that separated the bushes to the highway, it was depressing.
      . All the cars had their drivers and passengers on, testimony to the surprise of the invasion, he avoided that sight.
       "I can't use shit here," he paused and climbed onto the hood of a car. He slowly scanned every inch of the massacre of cars and people, finally there was a good sight, a Motorcycle.
       Perfect. He now could drive to the village and save his family. He jumped into the comfortable driver's seat, the key was still there, and there were neither trails of blood nor sing of struggle. How this perfectly able bike ended empty on the side of the rode, he would provably never know.

1533h, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Planet Omega. Joint Forces Command Center.
Big Horn Continent.

The constant tapping on the tile floor was the only thing to be heard in the darkened room. The old man was in the worst shape ever, he had not shaved nor showered in three days and nights, nor had he had a proper meal. Yet he was as alert as ever.
       The door of the room slowly opened and the face of a young commodore appeared on the open mark. Domanenko knew how to read a man, and the way this man acted was a prelude for bad news. The Marshal nodded and the man entered the room, on his right hand a yellow paper was extended flat.
       "Sir," the Commodore saluted, the Marshal slightly nodded in return. "Its confirmed now. Ocean planet chain is under attack," the Commodore waited for an answer, there was none. Only the scary eyes of the veteran man on him, "they seem to have gone against the largest planet of the Chain." The Commodore was impressed by the eyes of the Marshal, they did not blink. Like if he was possessed by some unknown evil his eyelids remained lock open, "their force composition is of-."
       The Marshal slightly shook his head, "no." The Commodore was shocked at the answer, the Marshal saw how the face of young man slightly bended backwards after his answer. "Just tell me where are them and what do we have near there."

1534, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Highway West

The sound of one screaming woman forced him pull the handles of the brakes, the motorcycle grounded to a halt sending a cloud of dust all around him. Two loud detonations, like if someone had slammed a hammer into an aluminum ceiling, popped on the right flank. The Major instinctively jumped to the ground and interlocked his fingers behind his back to cover himself.
       "Oh my god!" screamed a boy randomly ahead of him. He jumped out of the woods and onto the highway followed by a slow cloud of needles, he disappeared launching blood and tissue everywhere.
       Two more bursts of beams popped on the trees on the flank followed by a large scream of pain, he checked his sidearm holster and his pistol was there. He pulled it and laid his left hand flat on the ground right next to his head; the man rolled to his back and grabbed his sidearm with both his hands. He moved the barrel and exposed the breech, it was loaded. He rolled until he was with his chest facing the ground, and crawled over the sandy ground to the closest cover, the bike.
       The pilot, untrained in ground combat, was unaware of the enemies approaching the highway from the woods that covered the left ridge. He slowly arose to see over the bike onto the woods. Then it happened, the loud barks of a Grunt on the woods warned his friends of the presence of a human on the highway.
       Between the levees and branches a green light began to glow. In the Field Manual this was described as overloading plasma pistol, the pilot aimed his sidearm at the green glow and pulled the trigger; two tracers entered the woods and killed whatever was inside, in retaliation a Covenant Elite emptied his carbine on the bike; dust and rocks were raised around him as the radioactive bullets landed around him. He covered his face and head with his right arm and fired his pistol over the bike to the woods, hitting nothing.
       More dust and rocks jumped to the air around him as more bullets landed around him. In the background the roar of an Elite was to be heard as it shouted orders to his subordinates. The loud roar of the monster was simply soar and awful, it could left a man deft if it was done next to him.
       The roar then changed, it was continued and regular, and in a way sort of electric. All the rocks and dust were changed by a cloud of smoke and sticks. The pops of the Covenant carbine was replaced by detonations.

"Give me fifteen degrees right," called the crew chief. The pilot stepped on the right pedal and the Pelican traversed right. The side gunner pressed the button on the butterfly handle of the Gattling gun and the seventy millimeter roar erupted again.
       "We got enemy Seraphs inbound at high speed," the Copilot turned to see him, "lots of them. I expect them to be here in fifteen minutes."
       The pilot grunted, "roger that." The pilot watched how the side gunner methodically erased the woods with his gun. The smoke from the dust and expend propellant clouded the view, yet they could see what they wanted. The survivor by the bike, the Pelican and it's crew were from a CSAR squadron at Riverbed Air Base. They escaped in time because they had been ordered out in time when they were on ready five. The last they saw of their base and town was a series of explosions on the horizon when five hundred Seraphs blasted the base to hell.
       The gunner finished the woods and a full magazine of seventy millimeters. "Cease fire, cease fire," the pilot said over the COM. He moved the elevation lever forward and the nose of the aircraft descended but the aircraft maintained altitude but gained speed. He made two passes over the woods, it was clear. Everything that was on it when the strafing began was dead.
       "Shit," the copilot barked. He turned to face him, his expression and the word that came out of his mouth could only mind one thing, bad news. "A single Seraph is five minutes away," the copilot shook his head. "I didn't plan for this, we can't outrun it now."
       The pilot sighed; he had prepared himself for this kind of eventuality. "Ok, we only have one choice," said with a sad tone. "We have to ditch the craft," pulled the joystick and the aircraft came to hovering position. "George, find us an LZ near here," he ordered his copilot.
       "Roger, Roger," the copilot laughed as he pronounced the words of the words. He did not have the check his instruments; he spotted a nice field two miles away. "There," he pointed at the fields.
       "Ok," answered the pilot.

Frank looked at the Pelican that hovered over the woods, the squadron markins on its tail indicated that they were from the C-SAR group. It banked right and then left in quick succession. It was a salute. It passed over the Major with the rear door opened, the crew chief waved him to come to the craft, but the craft left.

It was a signal.

He had to meet them somewhere, he raised his head over the bike and there was nothing in what was once the woods, only a few trees remained unharmed. He sat on the chair of the bike and grabbed his map and looked for a possible landing zone. There was a field three miles away, if he had to guess they were headed there. He started the engine and accelerated away to the presumed LZ.

Mother of All Battles: First Battle for Oceana
Date: 10 May 2005, 8:25 AM

"We have met the enemy and they are ours..."
Oliver Hazard Perry

1613h, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space.
Joint Forces Command, Omega Prime.

The scattered reports that came from the system were incomplete, wrong or plainly unreliable depending on the sources. In the darkened room no one was standing still, only the Marshal who calmly stared a the large, blue screen. All the activity was generated by a hopefully wrong report from a spook ship in the Oceana Planetary chain. Marshal Bodanenko grabbed a tissue from his jacket pocket and wiped his forehead to dry the sweet. A Commodore approached him from his right and saluted and Bodanenko saluted back.
       "It's confirmed sir," every voice in the room, every action and every emotion died. "Ocean four has been glassed."
       The Marshal sobbed and gasps of sadness were heard slightly on the room, "How many souls?"
       "Three hundred million," said the Commodore, he looked away to hide his sadness.
       The Marshal stood and walked between the consoles of the Officers to the large display in the center of the room; he turned to face an old admiral, the Fleet Commander. "I'm activating WARPLAN Orange."

Fifteen minutes Later.
Fleet Command and Control Station.

ONI's briefing was, in a way, useless. Their annalists were trying to find a reasonable reason why the Covenant had invaded a planet instead of a glassing. Generally a Covenant land invasion had only one target, the use of ground troops to destroy the planet based defenses and aircraft that may oppose the attacks, yet it was weird since the Covenant had neutralized the defenses of the planet and system that they had held the planet. Or at least that was the thought of ONI.
       "So in conclusion we think that the Covenant will use this planetary chain as their main "lock" (Line of Communications) for further actions in the system," said the Commander of ONI in the System, a good General.
       "I agree," answered the Fleet Commander.
       "Roger," said Air Ops.
       "I think is a load of crap," said Bodanenko even though Tactically and Strategically it was the logical conclusion. "Don't you see it?" The men and woman in the conference room looked at each other in disbelief, or more accurately doubtfully. "They are using it as bait," said Bodanenko with arrogance and seriousness.
       "How so?" said partially offended the ONI chief.
       "They know how sneaky we are," he stood and began to walk around the conference table. "They will keep the planetary chain for one reason only," he stopped and stared into the eyes of the commander of the Naval Intelligence. "To glass one by one, to make the people suffer in it," he exhaled loud enough for everyone to hear. "To piss us off," the Marshal said with no particular feeling. "And they will glass every planet there, one by one until we attack them, in force, with the whole fleet," the Generals and Admirals got more comfortable on their chairs.
       "Now," he said more calmly, "we have already reported the Central Command at Earth and they are dispatching reinforcements," the Marshal sat down on his chair again. "Now we will hit them aliens hard, do but on our own ground," he smiled and punched the table so hard the all the cups and glasses poured their contents on the table. "Right here on Omega with all our guns and missiles orbiting the planet."
       Jaws dropped, what the Marshal just said contradicted everything the UNSC called doctrine. One admiral began to speak but he was immediately interrupted. "What is the composition of the Covenant fleet," the chief of intelligence did not move, he just sat at his chair.
       "We estimate that there are a total of sixty two ships on station by the Oceana Star, don't know how many are operational since planetary defenses worked very good. We are scanning their transmissions and we have come across some interesting information, their Capital ship is called Thunderous Justice, a symbol of the Covenant as far as we know."
       "Ok," said the Marshal with an uncharacteristic smile. "That is our target," he leaned on the table. "This is my plan," when he finished explaining the bold, better, crazy plan all officer's jaws dropped.

1425, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Fleet Rally point Baker
UNSC Carrier class Hurricane Tsunami

Commodore Diana Gutierrez took a long, detailed, look at the ships on the black void, counting twenty ships total; two Hurricane carriers, six light cruisers, two heavy cruisers, eight destroyers and two supply ships.
       At Electronic Emissions Control the ship headed to their IP, a thick asteroid field by a small, ghost planet. She heard the slow footsteps that crept upon her back, "Ma'am, transmission incoming from Fleet Command."
       "Aye," she said without turning around. She launched another scrutinizing look at her fleet, turned around and walked through the red lightened room to the COM station in the Combat Information Station in the ships bridge; in a small console on a poorly illuminated corner a Petty Officer waited for her. "Ma'am," began the Petty Officer. "It would seem by the transmissions I'm intercepting that the fleet is preparing for something big."
       "How so?" she asked and took a meticulous look at the Sailor.
       "From what I can interpret in all the transmissions," he grunted, and turned his chair to face the console. "Fleet Expeditionary Force One and Two are coming into the system, which can only mean one thing."
       "Counterattack," she whispered. "What is the transmission from FLEETCOM?"
       "It's for your eyes only," he tapped some commands onto his console. "I'm sending it to your office."

Diana sat on the chair and booted her computer, the message was already there, a very large file indicating only one thing, a very complex strategy. She slowly began to read the contents. "Now that requires some balls," the battle plan was unbelievable bold and to some eyes, crazy. At the bottom of the message was a signature.

Marshal Andryid Domanenko, Commander UNSC fourth sector.


She enabled the intercom, "Captain, get underway to Oceana asteroid field. I'll be on the bridge in five mikes."

1448h, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Humanity Class Cruiser NGC-1 Enterprise
Heading to Oceana Star

"So, this is what they want us to do," Rossini entered the hologram, disrupting some of the beautiful artificial planets and stars. He grabbed his pen and drew a line from the ships position to the star of Oceana, in orbit around a moon of Lira Prime, the closest planet to the Ocean chain.
       "We are to get to the Star and hide on its orbit until phase one of the Operation is complete," for the officers it seemed simple enough. "Wait until the Fleet draws the main body of the fleet away," he made circle around the largest ship. "And hammer this ship and bug out," he slowly exited the Hologram. "This sucker witch name is Thunderous Justice according to ONI, its supposed to be a symbol for the four chinners," the faces of the officers in the room darkened. "It's going to be fine as long as we don't have to take the whole pack on."

1648h, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
SFS-11456 "Pirates", Gold Flight. Oceana Planetary chain.

The sixteen Daggers space superiority aircrafts maneuvered behind the meteor, a hard thing to do since the visibility was hindered by the blue gasses and the constant harassments by rocks and debris. Like a hunter camouflaged they waited to make their move, they would be the first of the humans to take on the Covenant in Lira Omega.
       "Romeo, Romeo oh Romeo," called the controller on the Carrier Tsunami behind the static. That was the cue, for all he knew the Operation had begun.
       "Break away!" screamed Lieutenant Commander Red "Eater" Mackenzie. The sixteen fighters enabled their afterburners and went vertical, leaving the tail of the flaming rock and onto the clear, black space. "Go active," he ordered to his weapons officer.
       The powerful radar ignited and swept the space ahead them. In all the darkness were ten blips unseen to the naked eye, the radar signature indicated one thing, Covenant Seraphs. Ten teardrops flew in a wedge formation unaware of what was coming to them, a full volley of smoke and explosives.
       "Homeplate, Bull lead, confirmed. Bandit, bandit, ready to engage," called red on the COM as he activated his weapons.
       "Roger Bull lead, bandit, bandit, engage," answered someone over the radio behind static distorting his voice.
       "You heard him," he informed the flight. "Cleared hot, sort bandits," he keyed off the COM. He turned around to face his copilot; though his face was hidden behind the stubby Head Mounted Display he knew the man and could read his movements and expressions. He was scared to hell, and he could not blame him, Seraphs were awful enemies. "Just get me a target Joe, I'll do the rest."
       The copilot did a slight nod and his job speedily.

A long, digital Beep informed that the missiles already had a target designated.

He keyed the COM on the throttle stick. "Press," he waited for the acknowledgement from his flight. "Fox three!" barked all the pilots nearly at unison.
       The bomb bay opened and four long missiles fell onto the space, white contrails streaked away from the aircrafts and onto the Covenant formation. The Seraphs had no time to react, and they had only two options, to wait for the missiles to hit and hope the shields deflect them or simply engage the humans and hope to doge the missiles. Covenant Elites where impulsive and what they would do what for the humans was not obvious, their shields disappeared and blue torpedoes formed on their noses.

"Music on!" screamed the copilot before the loud alarms indicating a radar lock came on the cockpit.

The training took over; he hammered the throttles and ignited the emergency booster. The copilot pressed a button on his panel and bright chaffs left the aircrafts stern. "Vampire at six o' clock, minus thirty degrees and closing in straight, break right!" The pilot slammed the joystick right until his fighter was ninety degrees vertical; he then pulled the joystick towards him and the fighter turned away from the plasma torpedo.
       Collision Alert, Collision Alert, said the computer in a cold tone that did not show the danger the pilot faced. A friendly fighter almost struck him as they both passed dangerously close in the chaos as the fighters attempted to avoid the incoming plasma, the turbulence generated by the close flyby made the craft shake violently.
       There were several yellow glows, like if they were flying close to a star, in the cockpit as detonations appeared in the pitch black space somewhere around the Dagger fighter. The forty missiles from the Daggers swarmed the formation of Seraphs, several glows on the glass and cockpit indicated that several detonations had taken place. "Bandits hit! All members check in!"
       Slowly every aircraft crew checked in, except six. He leveled the aircraft directly into the wreckages of the Seraphs. "I have no bandits active sir," said his Copilot. In the space a trash field was formed by the Seraphs. His mission had been successful and now the UNSC had a breach in the Covenant scout net around the system, the Fleet now would counterattack Oceana.
       "Zulu, Zulu, Zulu," he called over the COM. On his radar display two hundred UNSC fighters appeared and so the first battle for the Lira Omega System would take place.

"Zulu, Zulu, Zulu," reported the pilot leading the interception of the Combat air Patrol on the edge of the Oceana chain, it was now the job of his bombers to attack the Covenant troopships orbiting Ocean Prime.
       "All flights this is Strike lead, hammer your throttles!" the seemingly empty space by the small and slow piece of rock lit up in a red cloud of afterburners. The strike package of two hundred Longswords and Space Fortress bombers was under the Command of the legendary Colonel Ron "Duke" Cunningham and he was the only man with no fear in the flight.
       Duke switched the COM on. "All flights this is strike lead, go cold," the red cloud again disappeared, only the black void was to be seen. Now every electronic emission was gone. And now the first the battle for the Oceana chain would take place.

2001h, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Near Highway West

"C'mon babe, you can do it," the efforts were to no use. The bike simply could no go any further, it was badly damaged. The Major sighed, but it was not all bad news, for what he could gather he was a bare two hundred meters from the Pelican.

The now associated with dead roar of a Seraph passed right over him, it disappeared behind the trees and the sky lit up in a yellow blast in the direction of the Pelican's LZ.

"Fuck," said the disappointed Major. He collapsed on the chair of the bike, "Now I'm screwed."
       As he began to calm down he caught a glimpse of three figures coming down his way to his right. They were tall and armed with long weapons; it could only be one thing. His worst fear, Elites. He dropped to the ground in time to avoid the radioactive shells that passed over him.
       He left his gear on the bike and ran away through the parry to the closest cover, the forest on his right. He ran for two hundred meters with the radioactive shells smearing past him, he stepped on something, a root most likely. He stumbled for a couple of passes and collapsed.
       Frank upholstered his sidearm as the unbelievable fast Elites approached his position, they slowed down and began to surround the Major position in the tall grass. The held as two new suns appeared on the sky. The ranking Elite screamed and as quickly as they appeared they left.
       The Major exhaled in relief, he then looked at his salvation in the far away sky. It was clear that those explosions were not of a human vessel, the blue flames were of a Covenant ship. And that was a large relieve, but he still had something to do. Save his family, and the only man who could do it was himself.

2001, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Fleet Rally point Baker
UNSC Carrier class Hurricane Tsunami

"This is strike lead, bulls eye, bulls eye, shack on the target!" Celebrations followed on the Combat Information Station of the carrier, and there was reason for it. The sneak attack was successful, not something that usually happened when UNSC fighters infiltrated Covenant held space and destroyed a small flotilla. Two troopships had been evaporated by the massive package of bombers, but all were not good news, two thirds of the bombers were gone, a good attrition rate all together.
       "Ma'am," called the COM officer. From her position on the bridge she looked at the young officer manning the radio set, "they are going berserk." God how she wanted a hologram, she approached the radar display and stared at the green dots that began to maneuver on the space, she was joined by another man. "The Covies are moving, two cruisers are on intercept course on the retreating aircrafts," the fleet Air Operations Officer told her what she already knew. "Ma'am Covenant transmissions have gone berserk, for what I can interpret they are worried by how the bombers snuck up on 'em," he looked at her. "They are moving some serious numbers."
       "COM, contact Command, tell them the bluff worked," she smiled.

2009h, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Humanity Class Cruiser NGC-1 Enterprise
On Orbit in the Oceana Star

The sweet soaked his uniform, the heat so near the star was so intense that a few man had fainted. But it was for a good reason, they could not be detected in the orbit of the star; the infiltration to their current location had been problematic, they had come dangerously close to a Covenant frigate, only god knew why they were not detected.
       Now the less effective but less power using low resolution cameras partially portrayed the Ocean planetary chain. It must have been nice in there, thought Rossini except on the farther of the planets, now a red pile of flames and glass, which angered ever crewmember. "Con, COM. I have a burst transmission inbound," reported the communications officer in the deck bellow.
       "Aye, on my way," the Captain stood on his chair and slowly moved to the ramp to the right, the red light made it hard to see so carefulness was not unnecessary.
       He made his way down to the lower deck and onto the corridor; he made a right turn and found the COM station, a small cubicle buried in the wall. "Sir," the Lieutenant was waiting for him. "The interference generated by the star is a problem but we have it figured out," said the Lieutenant proudly.
       "My guys are great," he tapped a button on his console and the message appeared on the screen. The captain carefully read through the message, his lips moved a little as he deciphered the fragments, he sighed. "Oh my god it actually worked," the Captain smiled and walked down the red corridor onto the radar and weapons station.
       "Ok men, how is the firing solution coming?" he asked the crew of five men working parallel to each other on a console, in front of them two large screen displayed all the data they needed to see, a display of the electronic spectrum and a slight infrared image. The papers and trash on the ground around them was a testimony on their hard work, notes and equations were written on them. The ranking man turned to face him, "it's rough but it will be on target, sir." He sighed and dried his forehead with his forearm, "unless they change postion unexpectedly it's a sure hit."
       All of the calculations they had made were based on passive systems such as infrared and radar warning devices. The Captain trusted the men in that they were right, he nodded, a small congratulatory gesture, and slowly made his way to the command chair to prepare to the battle.

"Helm, come right bearing one-niner-three by elevation two-seven-zero," he inhaled. "Prepare to fire," the Captain calmly barked as he sat watching the screen, the low resolution image gave him a small picture of the Covenant formation. It was easy for now.
       It only took a couple of seconds for the Helm to achieve the desired bearing, "steady on course one-niner-three by elevation two-seven-zero, Aye sir."
       "Weapons, con. Report on the Status on the MAC?"
       "All four Magnetic Accelerator Cannons are at one hundred per cent stretch, Heavy Explosive Armor Piercing rounds are in the chambers. Firing solutions have already been uploaded onto the ballistic computer and all systems are nominal," the Officer inhaled. "Ready to fire," like a cold stone the weapons officer reported.
       "Very well," the Captain took a long sip from his coffee. "Lock on designated firing solutions and shoot!" all the crewman heard how the metallic sounds banged every room of the vessel. On the large display a timer appeared, since there was no way to track the shots with passive systems so a basic formula was used to estimate the time of the flight of the shells. He would wait after the massive shells struck the target to go active.
       "Weapons, Con. Reload light rounds this time prepare to calculate a new firing solution based on active tracking."
       "Light rounds, aye sir," acknowledged the Weapons officer. "Five, four, three," he counted the timer and the Captain found himself silently repeating that to himself. "Terminal and... target!"
       Several sparks and flames, appeared as the Depleted Uranium shells disintegrated against the shields and hopefully the hull of the Covenant vessel.
       "Reactor to one hundred percent capacity," he felt the movement behind him as the Hologram reappeared together with the loud sounds of the generators coming online. Now the high resolution cameras were activated and the target was fully in view, the ship was still there, gutted from port to starboard, a perfect shot but not enough. "Maneuver, con. All ahead one quarter, keep her steady," he sighed tiredly. "Radar, Con. Lock on target and upload ballistic solution."
       "All ahead flank, aye sir," responded his officer.
       "Con, radar, two groups. One eight ships, designated Charlie one thru eight," on the main screen several tags displaying the ships data. "Group two, designated Charlie eight thru fifty six, all heading away it seems that the bluff worked." The Captain was relieved, it was ok now.
       "Con, COM. Enemy communications had gone berserk, the Thunderous Justice is calling for help and its not aware of the origin of the shells."
       "Status of the MACs?" the captain rested on his right thumb and index finger. "Loaded!" screamed the weapons officer so loud that the intercom was not necessary.
       "Lock designated fire solutions and fire!" the metallic sound of the Magnetic coils resonated through the ship as the shells left the muzzles.
       "Damn, if they have sonar they will pick us up in no time," said the battle officer who caused a chuckle on the Captain.
       "Radar, lock on the target with all the Longbow missiles batteries that are ready to fire between Alpha and Mike, fire at will."
       Two seconds passed before the thucks of the missiles going away reverberated the hull. "Any transients?" asked the Captain.
       "Nay sir, seems the MAC rounds took out the ship's ECM suit out," said with a sense of joy the Electronic Warfare Officer. The Captain slightly punched his armrest. "Right full rudder Helm," he relaxed on the chair and smiled. For what he knew the Covenant had not detected them.
       "Shouldn't we wait for confirmation of the impacts?" asked his Tactical Battle Officer, Sarah.
       "I don't want to stay that long around here, and for it seems the bastard is crippled, if the shells fail the missiles will do her," he said calmly.

1425, January 19, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Fleet Rally point Baker
UNSC Carrier class Hurricane Tsunami

She watched closely the radar display; the Covenant had gone berserk after the loss of their capital ship and she loved it, as soon as the large green dot turned to pieces celebrations filled every compartment of the ship. The Covenant were relentless, they would finish the Longwords off with small group, only fifteen ships were coming to the asteroid field.
       They had no idea what was coming in their way. Originally a group of forty ships was after the Longswords but the surprise attack had caused panic on the fleet.
       The Marshal was a bum, but he was also a brilliant strategist, his plan was going crystal. The fifteen green dots slowly came to where she had hoped they would come, a large kill zone her fleet was ready to blast.
       "Beautiful," she whispered with a slight smile. "Ok," she left the radar display and onto the digital map in the center of the red room. "I want the fleet to concentrate on this point," she placed her index finger on a point just outside the kill zone. "Prepare the ship to move out of the asteroid field," she grinned. "We are taking the shit straight to their face."

The Mother of All Battles: Surprise
Date: 11 January 2006, 5:35 am

0012, January 20, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Fleet Rally point Baker, Asteroid Field Kappa IV
UNSC Carrier class Hurricane Tsunami

Three hundred gray and black dots flew by the carrier and the Commodore that stood on the top of the control center where activity was, at least, uncommon. The sailors had to track, coordinate and separate hundreds of things before the Dagger and Longswords reached the Covenant fleet. The fifteen Covenant frigates where going to meet, in a few words, a can of whoopass.
"Strike lead on bullseye."
The Admiral stared at the girl in the console staring at her with damped in sweat in her face and hair. "Engage."
Though it was not heard at the time, since the filters on the communications network would not allow it, three hundred voices yielded "Weapon away!" For the powerful Covenant ships, infinite ego and unparallel merciless, this was a total and relentless humiliation.
A large white smokescreen formed infront of the fleet as the fighters and fighter-bombers fired their missiles at the Covenant ships that broke away from their tight formation perfectly in a way that dazzled the entire staff of ship commanders in the UNSC.
"Now." Commodore Diana Gutierrez, a young girl, from a poor family from Mars, smiled. One carrier, six light cruisers, two heavy cruisers and eight destroyers left their hiding places with the brown stones and sighted on. The hard acceleration, tight maneuvering and abrupt movement were not felt in the ship as it exited the asteroid field leading the attack for the entire field.
Her part on the operation was over. It was up for her Captains to do the job.

0012, January 20, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Exiting the Slipstream
UNSC Heavy Cruiser Iowa class, Surprise

The Enterprise, and six other ships, formed a cluster around the bulk of the force that exited the brown dots that formed the asteroid field. They were, purely, cannon fodder, except maybe, the Enterprise. "Match designated bearings and shoot!"
The hull reverberated and the silver, oval cannonball streaked through space toward one of the fifteen frigates. It struck the vessel amidships between the joint of the hull and the engines. The ship fell apart and exploded shortly after. The other sixteen ships, however, did not have such luck, at best, they lowered their shields.
"Transient! Transient!" called EW amongst several cries of warning. "Vampire! Vampire! Three plasma torpedoes inbound."
"Helm, come about hard one-zero-zero by zero-zero-zero." The ship pulled towards the asteroid field and accelerated, leaving behind the other, older and slower vessels. Poor bastards.

1825, January 20, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Ocean Prime, Ocean Continent, City of Caribbean

When she woke up she was somewhere different. It was the dairy store! Kenny had come up with the idea for unlimited ice-cream, what a genius. The problem was, they were all water. No wonder, she thought, it had been real warm that day.
One of the other worlds hat turned into a fireball. No biggy, just creepy. "Hey Kenny!" the older kid was his best friend, until her teddy was found, for saving her life. It was odd that the other grownups did not pay attention at them. They just ran away with their things and their own ilk. "Get over here!"
Kenny came as usual from the storage room without his glasses and a big simle on his face. "Sup Connie?"
"Nothing, just thought we could walk today."
"Sure," said Kenny. "But we better stay close."
"Right now?"
Kenny nodded. "Before it gets dark."

The two children, hand by hand, jumped on the water fountain throwing water at each other and giggled. Tough break, they will have no dry clothes for the night. The old square was the playing ground of all the cool kids on the city and the most beautiful spot on it.
There were two pools, one fish tank and one park with all kinds of toys on it. The only thing missing and it was clear, where other kids to play with. Though he wasn't bored, he was happy to be with Connie. It was just creepy with nobody around. "What do you think is going to happen?"
"Darn," said Kenny. "I don't know."
"Are our families ok?"
"I guess son."
"It is just that," the girl collapsed on his arms, sobbing and crying. "Will I ever see mom again?"
"Shit!" screamed Kenny. "Move Connie!"
"That's just mean," Connie moaned before Kenny grabbed her pink t-shirt by the shoulder and pulling her away. The large, oval, alien ship got hit by the missiles just above the cockpit filling the sky with a beautiful silver wall around it. Sounds of machineguns, lasers and explosions began to be heard and the only thing Kenny wanted was to get to the dairy store two blocks away.

1978h, January 20th, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Planet Omega. Joint Forces Command Center.
Big Horn Continent.

"Sir," the young airman entered the room almost knocking the door over. "More Covenant ships are entering the system."
"Where are they?"
"Still, by the Oceana star"
"Cool, I'll be right there."
"Cool?" muttered the airmen as he closed the door. Domanenko stood from the chair, almost falling by the effects of the Vodka he sipped earlier and walked out of the elegantly decorated office with wooden walls and red carpeted.
"Time for business then," he opened the door and walked out of the wooden doorframe into a room full of activity. On the large panel that illuminated the entire room with all sorts of colors, there were a growing number of red ovals of different sizes. "Man, is that allot."
"Sir," said Fleet Ops, a veteran admiral of the old school. Black hair and brown eyes, truly an imposing man. I could break him. "It is tight."
"How so?"
"They outnumber us fairly."
"Aw, they always do," he shook his head violently to eliminate the dizziness; it did not work, not at all. "SITREP"
"The bulk of the force is by the Oceana planetary chain and we have reports that the Covenant has begun invasions to destroy the arsenals on the ground." The Admiral said with no particular feeling. "The bad news is that they are sending scout parties
"And how many?"
"Hard to get a number, the jamming is too hard for our long range radars to achieve a lock on the formation, let alone track individual groups."
Marshal Domanenko let out a loud cough heard by everyone in the room. "Then get someone close and check that out. We cant have alien ships wondering around there."
Fleet Ops nodded and with no salute he turned around, and walked away. "Aye sir, I know exactly who."
"Who, Enterprise?" asked the Marshal impotently.
"No," Fleet Ops smiled. "The Surprise."

0200h, January 20, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Exiting the Slipstream
UNSC Heavy Cruiser Iowa class, Surprise

Two heavy, fixed Magnetic Accelerator Cannons, three light, mobile MACs and thirty 10m conventional howitzers; she was, by all means, a Battleship. Compared to other ships in the UNSC inventory she was, by far a monster. The bridge, it self, was a six story building. A structure over a superstructure. The black and dark gray cammo on the hull was beautiful and the shape, witch some people said looked like a rifle with a big stock and large barrel.
Commodore Bratton was sure, and betted on it, that the designers had in mind the MA-5B when they designed it. Either way, the ship resembled the weapon of the folks who would win the war; the Marines. The main bridge, witch had a natural view of space, was where the ship commander, a young, aggressive commodore from a humble past sat in a confortable chair. In front of the red haired officer was a panel with all sort of displays where all the information needed, wanted and else was displayed. Two mechanical stairs on the sides of the bridge led down two stories where several officers led their divisions.
"Con, radar. Contact with bogeys." Bratton stared at the radar display on his console, thirty bogeys, most likely Seraphs, approached his ship.
"Gunnery, con. Load the ten meters, flak shot. Fire when ready." The autoloaders on the ships bow loaded the heavy rounds too rapidly to count and the ship held fast.
"Con, gunnery. Rounds away." Several blindingly bright flashes stormed the ships bow for a second. Within ten seconds the Seraphs disappeared from the screen.
There was no joyous celebration, no screams of happiness. Dispatching Seraphs was not, colloquially, a big deal. "Con, radar. Clear."
The orders for the small task force of three ships were to screen, shadow and trail of the massing Covenant fleet, an order that made no sense, but everybody understood. With the "Heavy Cruiser," a name given for budgetary reasons, were a destroyer and a light Carrier. "Con, EW. Contact with search radars at two-niner-eight by one eight zero, qualify as Destroyer-bogey."
Though the EW suite was amazing, it was nothing compared to the skills of the officer and crew that manned it, if he said it was a Destroyer, the Captain believed him. "Aye EW."
The ship's position, near the Oceana star, was an exposed one. It was, in a way, to serve as a bait and in a darker, secret way, to try a new weapon. A MAC round based, nuclear weapon, it was, for the Captain, exciting at best. That was, in a way, the reason for the name. A ship built around secrets, expected to give Surprise.
"Con, AO. Recommend deploying air wings." The Action Officer was right, it was time for extra security.
"Deploy the fighter wings out of the Carrier Reach Three, keep them tight in."
"AO, aye sir."
In the old days when ship warfare took place on the vast seas airplanes, after cannons, ruled the day. The modern days were there was all the space necessary to maneuver, literally, a combination of both took place. At the beginning of the war, it all changed. Weapons on the fighters were not powerful enough to hit the warships in the Covenant inventory. It was left then, to the old fashioned naval battles to take place.
"Con, EW. Search radars scanning our direction, no hits insofar."
"Con, aye."
"Con, Radar! Contact!"
Bratton stared at the radar display on his console and a small green oval slowly advanced. "Corvette?"
"Roger that sir," said the XO right next to him.
"Con, Radar. Classify track as Charlie One. Confirmed as a Bass type Corvette."
"Aye," said the Captain. "Com, Con. Contact HQ, we have made contact with screening elements."

Somewhere in the Covenant controlled Space
High Charity
Ninth age of Reclamation

The flying bed, the red sheets and the Golden armor made the Counsel Chamber fall into a deep, dark silence. Though the carcass had not been found parts of his armor were salvaged from an escape pod. Ornus' Kapaffi had died at the hand of the vile human.
The flames of hatred on the hearts of every member, both Prophet and Elite, burnt their hearts to an unhealthy extent. "Today we grieve a legend among the living," the prophet was to go for hours, boring but enlightening. For the prophet of Joy it was still, the same nightmare haunted him in both sleep and awake. The same man, scarred and small followed him across the halls of High Charity and scared him to his end.
It was not to be a fulfilling experience. "As we speak the largest fleet ever assembled will attack human infected space and cleanse it." The assembly stood, clapped, cheered and laughed. "No human will survive this onslaught."
None in the room knew the omens that the prophet flying a feet over the ground knew. For another hour all noble, plebe and poor paid their respects to the living legend everyone knew, but none met. After the ceremony the fleet circled High Charity and left to space for the glory, and for the Prophet of Joy, to never return.

2014h, January 20, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Controlled Space
Fleet Rally point Baker
UNSC Heavy Cruiser Iowa class, Surprise

"Con, Radar. No movement so far, just more ships inbound, latest count is three-four-five."
The Skipper, however, was not on CON, he was at the bow of the ship where Radar, Fire Control and Gunnery where located. Standing on a balcony above the tube of MAC-1 loading mechanism he overlooked the loading of a new weapon in the UNSC inventory, the MAC launched nuclear weapon. The 550 Kiloton Nuke had only a layer of tungsten to protect it and it had the power to destroy an entire Covenant carrier and its surroundings.
"Beautiful thing that is," said the Chief of the Boat, the best man the Captain knew and the senior enlisted man in the ship.
"Aye," replied Bratton. "It is going to be a showoff."
"Yeah," said COB. "It is going to be blast."
"If it works," Bratton turned around to leave the action of the MAC. "It could change the war."
"Damned right," said the NCO. "It is about time we have a breathier. Cool we have a Big White to try it on."
The Big White Class Cruiser was the Holy Grail, or the devils pitchfork, of ship skippers in the Navy. All feared them, but all, with no exception wanted one painted on the hull of their "boat". In space the Covenant ships had a flare of a pack of sharks deep on the see, swimming in circles looking for a prey. The Covenant hardware had a vicious, bloodthirsty look that only that reminded the first human sailors to meet them as the creatures of the deep oceans on earth when Oil and Sail where the methods of sailing.
"Indeed Chief," said the Captain recalling the experiences with the Covenant ships. From Harvest to Lira Omega, since the first MAC round was fired at that type of ship it had butchered humans in both planet and space. Now it was payback.

"Con, Fire Control. Radar information is uploaded, computed, and ballistic solution is hot on MAC-1." The emotion on the bridge, the fighting compartments and crew compartments, and even the hardware was palpable for everyone, except, the Covenant fleet. His ship had five divisions solely dedicated to fire the ship's weapons, gunnery, radar, EW, fire control and Missile coordinated by de Action Officer. Over two hundred men and woman, all of them made things work, and yet, it was his job that, ironically, made it all happened.
"Aye, fire control."
"Con, Action Officer," called a very tense Lieutenant commander sitting at the center of the ship, inside the Combat Information Center. "Requesting permission to remove the safety on Nuke zero-five-niner-papa."
"Granted." On the panel ahead a red light came at the bow of the silhouette of the ship indicating to all, but specially to him, that the Nuke was hot. "Fire Control, con. Set target track Charlie Niner."
"Fire, Control. Target set, Big White Class Cruiser track Charlie Niner. All conditions met to begin firing of nuclear weapons." The Covenant cruiser, its silvery shape visible on the screens, was in perfect alignment with the turret at the lower bow of the ship.
"Match designated fire solutions and shoot!." A loud metal clang reverberated the hull and the MAC round, barely visible on the scopes, disappeared into space. The next thing the crew saw was a new sun forming at the center of the Covenant fleet.

0245h, January 21, 2563 (UNSC Military Calendar)
Lira Omega System, UNSC Inner Colony Control Space
Ocean Prime, Ocean Continent, Highway West

The APC left down the rustic trail that led to the main base on the prarry bellow the strongpoint. The chaos by the Covenant invasion was over and the Territorial Army had organized, and for the looks of it, was giving a fight.
The large antiaircraft guns on the hill chain around the valley by Highway West was the strong point of the human resistance on the planet and where the largest, most powerful nuclear silo was. Covenant ships had paid dearly on their last attempt to glass the planet. Apparently the only one remaining on the Oceana Chain.
Frank laid on the ground, gripping an SMG on his right hand and smoking a cigarette with his left one, staring at the huge formation of Covenant ships that orbited the planet. The city of Caribbean was the epicenter of a big battle to control the main supply line between the Fort and the Silo and for the looks of it, the Covenant was wining. Only a miracle could save the planet. "C'mon god, just one chance," his head rose. From the sky a light shone down the planet like a sing from heaven. The silhouette of one of the Covenant ships disappeared on the light of witch, undoubtedly, was a nuclear blast.