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Old
Default 07-13-2016
  #2971
Naked Crook
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Vernette nodded in agreement.

Vernette: I tend to agree. Anyone who hides behind an alias tends to value their privacy.

Vernette paused.

Vernette: However, I do like your recommendation on trying to narrow down Silverblur's identity through attrition. If I may, however, I think I can get us off to a good start.

Vernette paused.

Vernette: Have you ever heard the old saying "Spartans never die"? That was a PR stunt - it was propeganda to keep moral high. ONI didn't buy into that nonsense, because we were selling it. In reality, we kept highly detailed records and investigated every Spartan death and/or disappearance, in order to have solid confirmation of status. I can narrow our starting list using intel that ONI has built over the years, along side intel that I have procured.

Vernette paused for a moment, as he tapped his fingers on the touchpad on his desk.

Vernette: FIrst, we display the entire roster...

As Vernette said this, the large screen filled up with 75 individual dossiers - all of the Spartan II Class 0s.

Vernette: Next, we start striking off Spartans who were KIA during the war, by The Covenant.

The list narrowed to 62 candidates.

Vernette: Next, we strike off Spartans, who worked for The Trust, that were KIA by ONI Headhunters.

The list narrowed to 55

Vernette: And...other Spartans that were crossed of by Nighthawk and Anaconda. This would include The Risk Takers...

The list narrowed to 42

Vernette: Then we have Noah Z-028...killed by ODST Black Team in 2515

The list narrowed to 41

Vernette: We can further narrow the list by removing Spartans we know still WORK for ONI and are accounted for.

The list narrowed to 29

Vernette: Further narrowed by Spartans we know work for The Trust. This includes Hammer Team, Nikolai and Lucien...

The list narrowed to 22.

Vernette: The rest of these Spartans are AWOL. We either cannot find them, nor can we prove their deaths. These Spartans are all MIA.

Vernette paused.

Vernette: So, if we cross reference this list with the highly invasive psych profiles we took of the Spartans during their entire training regiment, we can narrow the list. The first thing we want is any Spartan that demonstrated even the most rudimentary leadership qualities. I would prefer to set the bar low, as to have a more fine grain control over the isolation process.

The list narrowed to 16.

Vernette: We would want any Spartan that demonstrated above average intelligence, at the very least. Again, setting the bar intentionally low.

The list narrowed to 9.

Vernette paused.

Vernette: And finally...we would want a Spartan that demonstrated contempt for authority. If you ask me, any Spartan that would abandon The Trust after being recruited by them, must have SOME contempt for authority.

The list narrowed to 4 candidates.

Vernette: Four candidates.

Vernette tapped his fingers on the desk for a moment.

Vernette: I am thinking a voice pattern analysis on these 4 candidates. We could access ONI's medical archoves and find the last psych eval for these four Spartans. I can let you listen to all four. If you have spoken to Silver blur, you may be able to recognize his voice. Do you think you could do that?


Last edited by Naked Crook; 07-13-2016 at 05:10 PM.
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Old
Default 07-13-2016
  #2972
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Cochraine nodded.

Cochraine: "Yes Sir. I should have no trouble with it. I've heard his voice more than once, although, I would likely include a variance of the original voices to account for time and experience."

Sat still looking at each of the four profiles on the wall. None of them looked familiar since Silverblur never took off his helmet in front of her. However, the Spartans she was looking at definitely looked aggressive and dangerous, more so than normal. She read the names silently to herself; James Ardson, Michael Kennedy, Brendon Callahan, and Quinton Machesky. None of them were familiar to her. Cochraine then closed her eyes and looked down so she could solely focus on the voices that were about to be played.

Cochraine: "I'm ready when you are, Director."

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Old
Default 07-13-2016
  #2973
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Vernette looked at Cochraine, as he played the first voice sample:

Vernette: The voice samples will involve their full names, followed by a series of words, that were selected at random, their current operational status and current location. All of this was done to normalize their EKG levels, in preparation for their evals, but, we will be able to get a good baseline for voice recognition. I will play each voice sample three times. The first is their actual voice. The second is their voice, as it would sound through the MJOLNIR's helmet voice processor, and the third will be an extrapolation of the second sample, adjusted to a 30 year age progression.

Vernette paused.

Vernette: The first voice sample is from James Ardson. Listen carefully.

Vernette played the first voice sample.

James Ardson: Name...James Ardson. EKG equalization test...trite, fallacious, consider, replace, bottle, blue, quicksand, unfasten, wreck, fixed, inexpensive, pine. Current operational status...active. Current location...ONI Omicron Site...

Vernette paused, as he replayed the audio, as it would sound through a Spartan's MJOLNIR voice modulator. He then played the audio for a third time, so as to simulate a 30 year age progression. He waited a moment, and allowed Cochraine the chance to think, before he continued.

Vernette: Here comes the next one.

Michael Kennedy: Name...Michael Kennedy. EKG equalization test...meek, cloudy, star, country, rabbit, close, drawer, spiders, bulb, stocking, border, receive. Current operational status...active. Current location...ONI Omicron Site...

As with the first sample, Vernette played it a second time with the MJOLNIR voice modulator filter, and a third time with a 30 year age progression. Like the first time, Vernette waited a moment, before he continued.

Vernette: Here is the third one...

Brendon Callahan: Name...Brendon Callahan. EKG equalization test...tramp, surround, record, spot, writing, puzzling, flaky, paltry, shape, purring, nose, scientific. Current operational status...active. Current location...ONI Omicron Site...

As he had done with the previous two, Vernette followed the same procedure.

Vernette: Finally...number four...

Quinton Machesky: Name...Quinton Machesky. EKG equalization test...point, dispensable, zesty, bucket, kindly, voracious, hate, puzzling, flagrant, proud, ambiguous, talk. Current operational status...active. Current location...ONI Omicron Site...

Vernette followed the same procedure, as he had done the previous three. When it had finally finished, he looked at Cochraine, and waited a moment before he spoke up.

Vernette: Well, Captain? Anything?

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Old
Default 07-13-2016
  #2974
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Midnight System --- Cloak And Dagger's Hanger --

Operator: Commander! We're ready and cleared for departure, we'll leave at your command!

The entourage of Operators began to board each Phantom, but Rah'jesh remained outside and approached Xyrho.

Rah'jesh: Shipmaster Xyrho...A word before you depart.

As the last of the Operatives boarded the Phantom, Rah'jesh continued.

Rah'jesh: If you do not mind me asking, but what will you tell the Council? I somehow doubt that they will approve of allying with Brutes, as they were one of the main instruments against us during the Schism.

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Old
Default 07-13-2016
  #2975
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Cochraine listened to all the samples and the only ones that sounded like Silverblur were Michael Kennedy and Quinton Machesky. The third sampling showed that they both had lower, almost threatening voices. Cochraine also noted how there seemed to be an underlying tone of neutrality and danger. She asked for those two samples to be replayed and they were. She focused on them as best as she could. Then she figured out which one.

Cochraine: "It's Michael Kennedy, he's Silverblur. The voices are similar with the exception that Silverblur's actual voice is more grizzled. He has a very authoritative voice."

Cochraine looked at the profile's image from decades prior. She was examining it very carefully, noting all of the features. She finally knew what the man under the helmet looked like and his proper name. When she met him again, she would have the advantage for once.

Cochraine: "I'm certain that's him, Director. Now that he's identified, what do we do with it?"

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Old
Default 07-13-2016
  #2976
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=============================================================
Midnight - Supercontinent of Azazeal - 10 KM north of Federal Heights City - The Citadel: ONI Facility - Epsilon Wing - CIC - 1325 Hours - October 12th 2555
=============================================================

Vernette grinned.

Vernette: Now we play the game.

Vernette paused.

Vernette: You said Silverblur, Rather, Michael Kennedy, had a fondness for Marcus Reynolds. Why? What made Reynolds so special? What was it about Reynolds that Mr. Kennedy was so fascinated about?

Vernette sighed.

Vernette: I realize I may be prodding at a delicate subject, but, I need you to answer this question. I need to know.

=============================================================
Midnight System Geosynchronous Orbit over the Planet of Midnight Cloak and Dagger Hanger Bay 1 - 1325 Hours - October 12th 2555
=============================================================

Xyrho looked at Rah'jesh, as his Spec-Ops commander asked his question.

Xyrho: The Council?

Xyrho paused.

Xyrho: I doubt that they will approve of this alliance.

Xyrho paused.

Xyrho: I will not dispute the fact that The Brutes were the instrument of our betrayal, yes. The schism was a dark time, and it has left a very deep wound. There is much anger between our two sides.

Xyrho paused again, as he turned away. Xyrho waited a moment, remaining silent, before reaching to his side, and drawing his energy blade. He then turned to Rah'jesh, and glared at him.

Xyrho: But, I must stop and consider your words, as they intrigue me. If the Council does not approve of this alliance, because The Brutes were the instrument of our betrayal, then I say that the Council is comprised of fools! Yes, the Brutes were the instrument of our betrayal in the same way that my energy blade is my instrument. The Prophets wielded The Brutes in the same way that I wield my blade.

Xyrho raised his blade, and held it near Rah'jesh's neck.

Xyrho: If I strike you down, right here, right now...on the floor of this Human vessel...in the sight of your Spec-Ops...who is it that killed you? Was it me, or was it the blade?

Xyrho paused.

Xyrho: Who betrayed you? Was it me, or the blade?

Xyrho paused.

Xyrho: Who is to blame? Me, or the blade?

Xyrho scoffed, as he held the blade to Rah'jesh neck.

Xyrho: It was not long ago that both you and I were instruments of The Prophets. Your blade, your weapons, your skill, and your zeal were merely an extension of the Prophet's will. How many Humans died because they were thrust upon the tip of your blade, or, subjected to the force of your Carbine's slug? Who is to blame for the countless deaths? Is it you, the instrument, or The Prophets, the betrayers?

Xyrho waited, as he held the blade to Rah'jesh's neck.

Xyrho: I await your response...Commander...



Last edited by Naked Crook; 07-14-2016 at 01:32 AM.
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Old
Default 07-14-2016
  #2977
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As the Energy Sword ignited, several of the Operatives, with their weapons raised stood at the ramp from the Phantom. Rah'jesh put up a hand against them, a gesture to stand down while Xyrho had his speech.

Rah'jesh: The blame is upon all of the alternatives; On the Prophets whom orchestrated this, and their instruments. We were used, as were the Brutes, but the blame is not only on the Prophets, but on us for allowing them to control us at their whip.

Rah'jesh straightened his back, glaring at Xyrho.

Rah'jesh: And now it is my, our duty for such to never occur again -- And by bringing down The Trust, I will achieve our goal.


He paused, seeing that his answer had been given.

Rah'jesh: What will you do?

As he said this, he gestured for Xyrho to enter the Phantom.

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Default 07-14-2016
  #2978
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Xyrho glared at Rah'jesh for a moment, before lowering his blade.

Xyrho: I am not going to kill you, if that is what you are asking.

Xyrho paused.

Xyrho: It was never my intent.

Xyrho retracted his blade, as he placed it back at his side.

Xyrho: You are correct, though. WHen you say that we were used, in the same way The Brutes were. We were lied to, and we were deceived.

Xyrho paused.

Xyrho: Our crimes are no different than those of The Brutes. We are no more innocent than they are. Our actions during the war, and during the Schism were no more, or less, abhorrent than theirs. They killed us, and we killed them. One is no worse than the other.

Xyrho scoffed.

Xyrho: There is no honor in letting our hatred for the Brutes fester like an open wound. There is no wisdom in allowing that festering wound to determine our future. If the Council is too cowardly to accept this, then they need not know what I am doing here, today.

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Old
Default 07-17-2016
  #2979
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Rah'jesh clicked his mandibles, letting out a slight grunt. He'd continue by turning his back on him, making his way to the Phantom.

Rah'jesh: We lost our Honour long ago, Shipmaster Xyrho. Long ago.

As Rah'jesh and eventually Xyrho would board the Phantoms, they would soon be on their way to the newly arrived Covenant Ships.

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Old
Default 08-17-2016
  #2980
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Cochraine felt a little uneasy by the question for two reasons. The first being that she didn't truly know the answer and the second was because of how close her and Reynolds were. She took a moment to speculate and theorize, but that would be the best it could be.

Cochraine: "Truthfully, Sir, I don't know. I can guess and make deductions, but what fondness he had was never audibly shown. It was just a cordial demeanor. It could be any number of reasons. He too had a history with the Trust and that was a common root for both of them. He may have viewed Captain Reynolds as a tool. Using any persuasion he could have had against the Trust and beat them from within."

Took a moment to breath and continue thinking.

Cochraine: "It's possible it could be because of me. Whether he has an infatuation with me or it's something tangible like my history or skill. Some officers view newer ones as a metaphorical blank canvas. At the time I was still impressionable. He may have felt that I could be persuaded or even impressed upon with certain skills or way of thinking."

"It could be a simple jealousy that he masks behind a facade of joy or neutrality. Alternatively it could just be out of amusement based on something superficial. I truly do not know. However, I would speculate that I'm special and the root. In some capacity he wants or needs me in some way."

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