Chapter 4-Hunt for the Index
Posted By: Ultra Sonic 007
Date: 10 March 2003, 3:14 AM
"You sure this is a good idea?"
Cortana didn't sound too excited at the notion from leaping onto the top of a Covenant cruiser. She had once taken a look in Master Chief's service record, and noticed that the Chief once entered a Covenant cruiser while in space.
It wasn't a very memorable experience for the Chief to be sure.
Samus was more confident. She had her Arm Cannon ready as she scanned the cruiser.
The Incursion is a Shark-class Covenant cruiser, according to the UNSC's classification chart. The ship is shark-like in structure and frame, and it contains a deadly arsenal of plasma-based weaponry. Guided plasma projectiles can be launched from its pods, as well as a powerful superplasma beam capable of ripping any ship apart instantly. The ship also wields powerful shields that take enormous amounts of fire power to destroy. However, the ship can be entered by using a gravity lift, or by entering when its shields go down to let its weapons fire.
"So that's how we get in..."
Samus looked down at the ground. Covenant troops were all over the place. She could see some that were Grunts and Elites, and some were types that he'd never seen before. Unfortunately, they were too far away to be scanned.
But she already had her plan down, and was about to explain it to the Chief when he started speaking.
"We're going to jump onto the ship and get their attention. We'll go in once the ship's shields go down to let its weapons fire. We'll blow a hole open, then find a console where Cortana can find the location of the Control Room."
Samus blinked a few times. Had he managed to read her mind? Or had he managed to devise the whole plan using only intuition and his eyes? Either thought slightly troubled her.
"How did you know?"
Master Chief stared at Samus, his faceplate preventing his face from being seen. Samus had no idea what his face was like. But then again, many didn't see hers either.
"I've had to do this before, except in the vacuum of space."
That was even more impressive. To perform the aforementioned maneuver was one thing. To do the same thing in the merciless vacuum of space was another thing all together. The Chief must have been through a lot, considering how much he apparently knew about the Covenant.
Samus was definitely ready.
They both leapt off the cliff at the same time, sailing through the artificial atmosphere of the ring-world before landing upon the Incursion's shield.
"Guys. They see us!"
Master Chief looked up at the plasma turret aiming at them. The shields began to flicker as the turret charged, then they dissipated as a blue bolt of plasma was launched at them.
Samus rolled into her Morph Ball form while Master Chief dive out of the way. They were now beneath the shields and on the hull.
Chief could hear Cortana give an inquisitive hum as she saw Samus return from her Morph Ball form. "How do you do that?"
Samus turned to the Chief and replied, "Maru Mari. Morph Ball technology of the Chozo."
"Who are the Chozo?"
"Long story. I'll explain later."
The Master Chief watched as Samus moved closer to the turret, moving slowly under he Fusion Suit. He had a gut feeling that the 'Chozo' might be the key to a lot of mysteries surrounding Samus.
Samus' quickly charged her Wave Beam and shot at the plasma turret, disabling it.
"Try and break through the hull Chief!"
The Master Chief let a grenade roll to a small indentation in the ship's hull, and a few seconds passed before a plume of fire and smoke shot upward as the frag grenade exploded.
When the haze cleared, a hole about one foot wide was there.
Not enough to fit through.
"Let me do the rest."
Master Chief stood back as Samus' Arm Canon converted to her Missile Launcher. She launched a Super Missile at the hole, expanding it by another two feet.
"Let's go then."
Master Chief wished he could see Cortana's facial expressions now. He could almost feel her fuming at being constantly one-upped by the bounty hunter.
They both moved into the hole, carefully touching the floor within the Incursion.
Master Chief looked carefully around the first hallway.
He moved further into the hall, with Samus taking up the rear.
As they moved along, Samus noticed how unlike the ship was in comparison to the Space Pirates. Whereas the Space Pirates' ships were dark, cold and gray, the Covenant's ships were a mix pink, purple and blue. Everything about this ship looked...organic.
"I wonder if all of their ships are like this?"
As she saw the Master Chief go around a corner, she then heard the sounds of roaring plasma. Then came the sound of bullet shells. A scream of death followed as the sounds of battle ceased.
She stepped around the corner to see the Master Chief looking over the dead body of a blue Elite.
"According to the data I've managed to pick up, the Incursion's control room should be....there."
A few seconds passed, then a red, triangular mark appeared on the Chief's visor. Below the NAV point was a number that said 500 meters.
"Let's go then."
Samus followed the Chief through several hallways, almost feeling as if the ship had been totally emptied.
As they came around another corner, Samus saw what looked like walking lizards. Some of them looked like walking vultures. And they both carried large shields. She scanned both.
She got the same result from both.
The Jackals are approximately 5 feet, 8 inches tall, although they usually don't stand at their maximum height all the time. Their senses of sight, hearing and smell are much greater than that of the other Covenant units, thus making them perfect scouts and assassins. Their shields are incredibly strong, but they can be deactivated by plasma weaponry.
Samus didn't have time to think as green plasma burst forth from the Jackals' plasma pistols. She quickly ducked behind the wall, effectively keeping her out of their line of fire.
She then looked at the Chief, who lobbed a grenade at the Jackals.
Smoke enveloped the hall in front of them as purple blood was spilt. The Jackals were dead, and they could continue.
"Sensors are detecting Covenant movement all throughout the ship. They know we're here now."
Master Chief kept his trigger finger ready. Now that they were found, it was going to be a tough job getting to a information database.
The frigate was like a blood hound.
Spies had informed them that the Hunter was on a mission to another galaxy.
That was four months ago.
Now they would be entering the unknown galaxy in only a few weeks...but that would not be satisfactory...they would continue travelling in Slipstream space longer than safety protocols commanded.
But it would be worth it in the end.
The Space Pirates were ready and willing to purge the galaxy of all its resources.
All in their efforts to rid themselves of the Hunter.
Adam hoped the Gunship would be able to have enough power to let him do this.
"Here goes nothing."
He sent out a signal from the Gunship to the teleportation grid.
If the grid complied with it, he would be allowed access to it.
And it should be able to extend the range of the Gunship's scanners and sensors to every sector of the ring.
Several seconds passed.
A signal returned.
Adam sighed as the grid opened up the gates for him. He immediately increased the sensors' range.
He pulled up a holographic image of Halo, and he looked at all the little details.
He saw the Covenant fighting the demonic-looking Flood in several sectors of the ring-world.
He looked about to see a Covenant cruiser.
Samus' signal was coming from there.
"Be careful Lady..."
A Grunt was sent backwards by the explosion. Several rounds of the Needler that the Chief now wielded had struck the Grunt, exploding a few seconds upon contact.
Samus couldn't help but somewhat admire the resourcefulness of the Master Chief. He had run out of ammo for his pistol. So he simply exchanged it for one of the Covenant's weapons.
But now there were more important matters to contend with.
A fully charged Plasma Beam blast came into contact with a group of Grunts.
They were incinerated immediately.
The Chief could care less as to how Samus did it, as long as she did do it. Cortana was less than pleased though as she began to the Chief, and only the Chief.
"If anything, she's a show-off."
"Watch it buster. I will take down your shields. Then see how you like it being vulnerable like you used to!"
The Chief sighed as he shot several more Grunts with the Needler. He had to question the AI's personal thoughts at times.
He quickly dropped his Needler and picked up a plasma pistol as he dove behind a canister. The Jackal shooting at him began charging its plasma pistol.
He charged his as well.
He quickly moved out from behind the canister and shot his charged blast.
The Jackal shot his one second later.
Master Chief ducked behind the canister again, feeling the heated plasma collide with the canister's front. He was unscathed.
And now the Jackal's shield was gone.
He took out his MA5B Assault Rifle and unloaded ten bullets into the Jackal's mottled and gray skin, killing it in seconds.
Samus hopped down beside the Spartan II as she put her Arm Cannon on the Power Beam mode. "Let's go."
"According to my scanners, the Incursion's control room is just down the hall through...that door."
Master Chief saw a NAV point mark appear over the door. He pointed towards it as he began to walk to it.
The doors opened and out came the enemy that he did not want to see.
The massive, blue-armored titans were like monsters on the battle field.
But Samus took the time to scan one of them.
The Hunter is the most powerful known fighter in the Covenant's warrior caste. Even though at full height, it is 12 feet high, it only stands at 8 feet during combat to protect its orange, gooey body. A fuel rod gun has been physically welded to its right arm. The gun shoots a charged plasma rod which explodes on contact, and it is currently known to be a rechargeable weapon. The metal shield it carries on its left arm is made of an impervious metal alloy, and its weight turns it into a powerful melee weapon. The Hunter is also quite quick to turn, otherwise its vulnerable back might be exposed to enemy fire.
She had no time to think as a fuel rod gun blast zoomed over her head.
Samus jumped up to a platform above her, risking a glance at the impact zone of the shot.
The canister it hit was nearly annihilated.
She quickly set her Arm Cannon to the Ice Beam function as she tried to get a get shot at the Hunter's body.
As for the Master Chief, he had engaged in a 'cat-and-mouse' game with the other Hunter.
The behemoth would grunt as it charged forward to hit the Chief with his metal shield, but it would miss. Then pains seared through its body as the Master Chief opened fire on its back.
It turned around to charge again.
Dodge. Turn around. Fire. Repeat.
The Hunter gave off its death moan as it collapsed to the ground, dead.
Samus fired her charged Ice Beam.
The Hunter froze upon contact.
Samus leapt form the platform above and shot a super missile at the Hunter's backside.
The projectile hit, and the frozen Hunter was enveloped in an explosion.
Samus quietly landed beside the smoke, looking upon where the Hunter stood.
Then, much to her surprise and horror, a green light began to glow from within the smoke.
The fuel rod blast collided with her mid-section, taking out two whole Energy tanks. Samus was sent sprawling as the Hunter quickly ran out of the smoke cloud and brought its metal shield down upon her, effectively taking out another Energy tank.
3 down, 11 to go.
Then the Hunter stood silent as it collapsed to the floor, a bullet wound in its back. The Master Chief walked over the dead Hunter as he picked Samus up to her feet.
"Do you show any gratitude?"
"Yes. Thank you. Now where next?"
The Chief pointed to the hallway on the far left. They both made their way up the hallway until they reached a room where several holographic consoles were fixed upon a central pillar.
"There it is."
Master Chief took Cortana's processor cube out of his helmet and placed it into the terminal as Samus began scanning the console screens. The main screen blinked red as the Chief pulled out Cortana's processor cube and placed it back in.
"Do you have the location Cortana?"
"Got it. We need to get into a Covenant dropship and fly to the coordinates of Halo's control room. Head back to the hangar."
The Chief nodded as he made his way back to the hangar, with Samus following close behind.
Upon entering the hangar, they saw a Covenant dropship pulling in, letting loose its payload of four Jackals, three Grunts and one Elite.
"Hurry! Get on board!"
Samus launched missile after missile on the Covenant that just appeared as the Master Chief pulled the Elite piloting the dropship off. He placed Cortana's processor cube into the dropship's terminal.
"I'm at the controls. Samus! Get on board!"
Samus launched one last missile at an Elite before hopping on top of one of the dropship's 'wings' as Cortana pulled out of the hangar and flew off into the night sky.
"Okay...we're on our way to the control room."
To be continued...
Next time, Samus encounters the Flood for the first time as she and the Chief set down into a jungle within a valley, where the Covenant are attempting to prevent the Flood from retrieving the one item that activates Halo....the Index.
And why would the Flood want the Index?
To destroy it.