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Project: Shadow Spartan, Chapter 1
Posted By: Agent Shade<silent_shadow13@hotmail.com>
Date: 11 July 2003, 11:09 PM


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      "All set chief?"

      "All set Dan, thanks." The hatch on the back of the lifepod closed and John turned around in his seat. He slipped on a headset and could hear a countdown being said in his ears.

      "Brace for impact..." John held on, then the lifpod jolted forward, smashing out of the small bay that it was stationed in. As it rocketed away from the old Excalibur-class frigate, John grabbed hold off the controls and took control of the pod he sat in. Another voice entered his ears.

      "You good there Chief?" asked Captain Vladimir of the outdated frigate Redman. John nodded.

      "I'm good Captain, thanks for the lift" he replied. The Excalibur frigates had been put out of commission years before, during the beginning of the Human-Covenant war. However, this particular one was kept around. For this assignment, it was given a new slipstream engine, to travel to John's required destination fast. He knew that he would be counting on that frigate to take him back, but the seats behind him wouldn't be empty like they were now.

      As John headed for the planet; Elrond V, he began to reflect on the incidents that had happened which caused him to be where he was now.

      The Spartan-IIIs had gone rebellious. From what John had heard, it was scheduled for them to be executed, since they couldn't live among regular humans. However, the Spartans caught on to what was happening and prevented themselves from getting slaughtered, then escaped the Military base they were in, stealing four Pelican dropships and killing several Top Brass generals and close to a thousand Marine Regulars and Orbital Drop Shock Trooper. No doubt, these actions alone would send any man or woman to "the chair," but as John sped toward the atmosphere of Elrond V, he began to sympathize to them.

      If he had been in their situation, he would've done the exact same thing. Nobody would want to just be pushed away without a single thank you or anything, after doing so much. The Spartan-IIIs basically stopped the war, when they captured the Grand Master Prophet and had him executed. The thoughts with everyone would be that the war would escalate, however, it didn't. The remaining Covenant almost stopped fighting. Many didn't know that the Grand Master Prophet was dead, but others did and basically let the humans mow them down. If it hadn't been for the Spartan-IIIs, John would still be at Earth, helping with the clean up job.

      Everyone thought that Spartans couldn't live among humans and sure looked like they couldn't. Several citizens who didn't support the Spartan program had called them "freaks," when they arrived on Jericho VII, which immediately triggered all of the Spartans to attack the group of people who had gathered to insult them. How come they were called freaks and John wasn't.

      John had put down his weapons and armor when the invasion of the Covenant home world began. During the first few days of the invasion, John had settled into a small, growing community on Ceti-Alpha VI, and he was able to cope well with the others living around him. Truth be told, they didn't know he was a Spartan, plus, all of the Spartan-IIs were dead, so he didn't look suspicious when he got off the transport. In fact, John even married a beautiful woman named Laura, who had worked with the Spartan-II program. John not only was a husband, but a father to a five year old son named Samuel, who he named after his best friend in the Spartan project.

      John guessed that it was because his family was on the planet the Spartan-IIIs had gone rebellious on that made him angry towards them. After their initial attack, the Spartans had raided two military outposts, stealing weapons, vehicles and other supplies. Following that, they attacked a nearby city, where they killed innocent civilians and held others as hostage. John couldn't believe that they were doing this. In some ways, he could understand it, but in most ways, he hated it and wanted them to suffer just as much as those people they killed did. John would make sure that the Spartan-IIIs would die.






      John landed the lifepod on a patch of dirt, which he had used before as a landing pad. Since Elrond V was an empty planet, and didn't attract a lot of attention, John had created his research lab in the middle of an open field. It was a simple dome, made out of Titanium-A1 armor. John got out of the pod, locked it, and then jogged to his dome that towered over him. He typed in 1-1-7 into the keypad beside the large sliding door, which beeped in response and opened.

      John had designed the interior quite simply. There were no separate rooms; it was just one huge room. From where he stood, a cluster of computer consoles and a cryo-tube were off to the left and to the right was a firing range. Stuffed dummies were all over the place, and one part of the dome was covered in weapons and ammo. Punching bags, and a small little kitchen, all neatly organized into this dome. John smiled, breathing in the air, then shut the door behind him and walked to the cryo-tube in the corner.

      John decided to leave his candidate sleeping for a bit, while he took a moment to get used to his surroundings. He walked over to the table, and looked at the plasma screen that popped up. Normally, a list of possible foods would be there, but instead, the holographic projector showed a woman. John smiled.

      "Hello Cortana" he said. The "smart" AI construct named Cortana smiled at John.

      "Good to see you John, how have you been?" she asked.

      "Not bad, a situation has come up"

      "I know, I've been monitoring FLEETCOM traffic, doesn't sound good, the Spartan-IIIs, I would never have guessed" she said. John smiled and chuckled, as a list of foods popped up and he chose to eat some fries. Another holographic projector popped up and a carton of fires appeared. As he ate, he listened to Cortana.

      Cortana's life expectancy was around seven years, and she was getting to the end. She had around a year and a half left, before she would self-terminate. John didn't understand the AI system, but he would definitely miss her. As Cortana finished her report, he looked around for a second, curious.

      "Where is Lancelot?" he asked. Before Cortana could answer, a black knight, surrounded by purple flame appeared beside her, wielding a large sword and shield.

      "I am here" he whispered. Lancelot was a smart AI like Cortana, except younger. He still had five years left before he would stop functioning. John had requested a second AI from the UNSC, and since the technology for creating AIs was high, they gave him one. Lancelot and Cortana both worked hard to keep John's candidate alive and monitored him constantly. They usually helped out with the augmentations and gave the odd pointers whenever they felt necessary. John appreciated their help.

      As he finished off his fries, he ordered Cortana and Lancelot to start waking their candidate. As they did, John picked up the folder had brought with him, which was the same one had shown Vice Admiral Jameson during the meeting yesterday.

      Project Shadow Spartan was started to create, a Shadow Spartan. John's idea was that he would be all forty-six Spartan-IIIs compiled into one Spartan. Because John didn't wish to call him a Spartan, he invented the term Shadow Spartan. The one advantage that John had over the Spartan-III creators was that he had a cryo-rejuvenation tube. If John wanted too, he could leave the candidate alone for a few months, come back, and he would be a hell of a lot stronger than when he left him. The tube not only boosted all of the candidate's sub routines, but it did genetic-augmentations, replacing skin cells and other types of biological cells with better ones, thus making the candidate stronger, faster and smarter. All he would have to do was sleep. But because John had Cortana and Lancelot looking over him, the candidate would be better then ever. John didn't know all of the specifics though. He wasn't a scientist, and didn't wish to be one. His purpose was train the candidate in various martial arts and the usage of weapons. John opened the folder and looked over it.

      His candidate was his son, and decision John and his wife had made personally. It took Laura a while to agree to it, but eventually agreed, so long as she could overview it. At first, she did, but now it was unsafe for her to leave Anion (the planet that the Spartan-IIIs fought on), since the Spartans had shot down two civilian dropships in the last two days. Laura trusted him and John would never betray her. He would watch out for his son and make sure that he didn't come to any harm during the rest of his training.

      John knew that the training wouldn't take long, since they had covered a lot during the first few months from which they taught Sam. John planned to spend the rest of the week on training, and then send him into Anion. John slowly flipped through the pages of the folder.

      The armor Sam would wear was called MJOLNIR-X and was much better than the regular MJOLNIR armor worn by the Spartans. The armor's shell is made out of a multilayered alloy of remarkable strength, coated with a refractive glaze that would disperse projectile impacts. On top of that, the armor was able to camouflage into its surroundings, by the use of an environment mirror system that was added above the glaze. The interior of the armor was similar to the MJOLNIR, with reactive metal liquid crystals and a gel-filled layer.

      However, what John was most fond of, was two weapons that the Shadow Spartan would always have and Sam was even fonder of. Over the years in the war, the scientists at the Office of Naval Intelligence had created a type of weapon similar to the Covenant plasma swords. Most marines used regular combat knives; however, ONI had invented a type of active plasma coating that attached itself to the metal of the blade, thus making it three times as powerful. When a marine used the knife, the plasma would add to the amount of damage done. Yet, John didn't like a small twelve inch combat knife to be used by his Shadow Spartan.

      Instead, John, with the help of Lancelot, crafted two North Star battle blades, made out of the exact same material used in the MJOLNIR-X armor. Along with that, he coated both blades with the plasma gaze. During the ending of the war, John had been luckily enough to try the swords out and had cut an Elite, a Brute and several Jackals and Grunts in half, with one simple gesture. The strength and power in the sword's meter and a quarter blades was strong enough to kill them, but the plasma gaze helped cut through the shields of the Elite and Jackals. It would definitely be handy against the Spartans. The Shadow Spartan would wear them strapped across his back, diagonally opposite from each other. The other weapons that Sam would be able to carry would be up to him. However, Sam seemed to take a liking to the MA5B assault rifle and MA7B battle rifle.

      "John, Sam is coming around" said Cortana, appearing above the cryo-tube. John walked over to the steaming tube and stepped back as it opened with a whoosh, more steam flying into the dome. It was so thick, John couldn't see the huge figure that stepped out and stood by the tube. However, as John waved all the smoke and steam away, he stared at his son who stood before him.

      Sam was now twenty-eight years old, probably around eight feet in height, which was taller than John and even taller than John's ex-friend Samuel. His body structure was phenomenal. Abs, muscles, strong jaw, everything. He had grown his black hair back and his blue eyes twinkled in the light as he smiled at John.

      "Hey dad" he said. John grinned and embraced his son.

      "It's great to see you son, just great. I really wish I could catch up with you, but we have a situation that has come up. Get ready for the armor, Cortana will brief you" he said, still beaming up at his son. Sam nodded and walked over to a small cubicle near the kitchen, where he coated on a layer of bio-cesium, which would help with the gel-layer in the armor. As he listened to Cortana, John brought out the MJOLNIR-X armor.

      True to his name, the MJOLNIR-X armor was black, however, it could camouflage with its surroundings. John laid it on a table Lancelot had conjured, and then went for the swords. He grinned as he picked up the heavy things and placed them on top of the armor. As he finished, Sam walked over, his mouth wide open.

      "It's a joke right?" he asked.

      "Sorry Sam, it isn't, they even declared their independence yesterday" John said grimly, holding up the armor to Sam, who took it.

      "Shit" he muttered, as he stepped into the armor, and let John fix the various plates that needed to be planted on. Sam's head disappeared under a black helmet. The armor looked exactly like the regular MJOLNIR armor; however, the visor that covered Sam's eyes was more curved at the edges, making it look like he was glaring. John strapped on a headset.

      "Hey, can you hear me?" he said into the microphone near his mouth.

      "Yeah dad, loud and clear" replied his son.

      "Good, here is our pride and joy Sam" John said as he brought forward the battle blades. Sam took one and strapped it to himself, and did the same for the other. John looked at him.

      "Not to heavy at all?" he asked.

      "Course not dad, I've been in that tube for months now, I could probably carry four of these swords" he said. John chuckled, and then took off the headset. He reached for two punching pads, and held them up in front of him.

      "Okay, hit me" John said. Sam hesitated at first, and because of that, John struck out, smashing his enclosed fist into Sam's chest. John knew that that punch hurt him more than it did Sam, but he knew it irritated Sam.

      "He who hesitates, dies, now hit me son" he said again. John blinked and as he began to open his eyes again, an impact like the one of a Hunter's fuel rod canon struck him, sending him flying backwards. John opened his eyes and saw Sam standing with his fist outstretched. John had flown almost five meters from that single punch. He sat up; rubbing his back, then looked at his punching pads. The right one had a huge hole in it, shaped like a fist. John looked up at his son.

      "Maybe this training won't take awhile" he said.


TO BE CONTINUED
By: Agent Shade





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