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Most users ever online was 29 on October 1st 2013, 12:09 am


    Regrets of a Spartan.

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    Shad0wChas3r
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    Regrets of a Spartan.

    Post  Shad0wChas3r on May 17th 2015, 11:48 pm

    Author's Notes: No, I'm still not announcing the end to my self proclaimed retirement. However, I've been following along with the 'Hunt the Truth' Campaign set in place by 343 Industries to help build up the story for Halo 5: Guardians.

    Without spoiling anything, there was a recent addition to the audio diary run advertisement campaign that made me think really hard about the SPARTAN program. We all knew the clones were sent to take the place of the inductees. But never once did I ever think to associate them as human. The latest installment really opened my eyes to just how terrible the program was.

    There will be some mild spoilers to the 'Hunt the Truth' ads here, so if you haven't caught yourself up to them, please do not continue. Likewise, if you have not finished Dark before Dawn, I highly recommend that you have finished that before starting this.

    Now you might be asking; well Morgan, what exactly is this? This is a miniature, likely five part tale, that's going to engulf further into Blaine's past as a Spartan II, and his future as the Head of the Military that allowed such heinous acts.

    Do Not Click if DbD hasn't been read:
    This story was written, assuming you made the 'Dark before Dawn' ending your choice of canon for Blaine's fate. Not to say that the 'Heroes Legacy' ending choosers aren't welcome to read this, it is simply that this was written with that ending in mind.  

    With all that aside, thanks for taking the time for reading this!

    Blaine sighed as he lazed back in the sand, the rustling of waves gently crashing against the beach. Smiling, he felt the gentle ocean breeze gently brush against his chest. Gently rolling his neck left and right, he placed his hands behind his head. Peering through his shades, Blaine watched as Autumn and Dawn chuckled, tossing a hard disk of plastic between themselves.

    Autumn had called it a 'Frisbee', a toy with the simple function of flying through the air, only to be caught by a fellow 'Frisbeer'. Blaine frowned, to Autumn, a Frisbee was a no brainer, the concept was simple. For Blaine, however, he had never played with one before, hell, he had to ask her numerous times the concept for why someone would play with one.

    Of course, to him, planning attacks on enemy positions, and changing the tides of battle came naturally to him. Something that baffled Autumn, even to this day. Closing his eyes for a moment, Blaine breathed the salty air in calmly, before exhaling out his nose.

    You will become the best we can make you.

    Halsey's words had been so far ingrained into his mind, he had a hard time believing the horrors he had been put through. Wincing at the thought of his augments, he tried to retrack his mind to his vacation. It had been several months after the Didact had attacked Earth. While things had been just as hectic as they had been with his first run through of his life, he was still able to allot himself some personal time with family.

    In this second time through his life, he had so much to attribute to this new personal peace he found himself reveling in. He had saved many of his friends, including Butch, someone he had never thought he would have saved in a million years. Being a host for Goldenheart certainly did have it's perks, but at the same time, it came with a cost.

    Every memory from his previous attempt at life remained with him. All his conflicts with Butch, the deaths of all his friends, his OWN death. They haunted his every waking moment, but worst still were the suppressed memories of Spartan training. Ever since he first retired in his first attempt at life, he had made it a goal to forget his past, and look to the future.

    Mistakes he made in his past life, however, were convinced to make him remember. Remember what he had done, how he had done it. Growling with annoyance, Blaine stood quickly, whipping the shades off of his eyes.

    "What's the matter Blaine?" Autumn asked, as her and her daughter turned to face the Spartan.

    "Nothing, nothing." Blaine groaned to himself, placing his head in his hands. "Just a bad memory. I'm just going to take a dip."

    Walking over towards the water, Blaine winced as the icy cold water nipped at his feet. Turning his attention towards his family, he saw Autumn stare at him with her concerned look. Neither of the women spoke, although Dawn, in all of her teenage innocence, glanced at her mother in confusion.

    Gasping, Blaine dove face first into the ocean. The icy sensation washed over the Spartan, bringing yet another dark memory to the surface.

    Where are the others in your Squad?!

    I-I dunno! Glgaagasglkagagagh

    WHERE ARE THE OTHERS IN YOUR SQUAD?!

    In the forest! About four Klicks from here!

    Pathetic, absolutely pathetic. Get the hell out of here.

    Blaine's eyes widened, the sudden saltiness from the water slightly irritating his eyes. His mouth gaped open, as bubbles expelled from his mouth. Struggling his way back to shore, Blaine's screams echoed for miles, as Autumn and Dawn sprinted over.

    "Dad!" Dawn shook her father's shoulder gently. "Dad, are you okay?"

    Blaine shook the thought of Mendez' waterboarding out of his head for a brief moment, before smiling at his daughter.

    "Yeah kiddo, I'm fine." Blaine shook his head. "You're old man is just getting nutty, that's all."

    "You were screaming." Autumn frowned. "You only do that around open electricity."

    "Yeah, my mind has just been really clouded recently, that's all." Blaine coughed a second. "You two go have fun, I'll sit here with my feet in the water."

    Dawn gave her mother a concerned look, before peering back at her father. Gently wrapping her arms around his neck, she stood, as did her mother. Blaine grimaced to himself, despite being freed from his boring desk job as the head of SPARTAN, he still found his work following him wherever he went.

    How can you think that SLAUGHTER is WORK?!

    It is our duty as Soldiers to protect Humanity, no matter the cost.

    That sounds like Military Propaganda if I've ever heard of it, Lieutenant.

    I don't pay you for your opinions, Soldier. I pay you for your aim.

    Blaine had remembered that moment in time. He had been approached by a social justice warrior, who had been enlisted into the Military during the Insurrectionist Campaign. Leslie Stodard, had impeccable aim with a Marksman rifle, but a nasty reputation for being earnest.

    At that time in his first lifetime, he had argued with Leslie on numerous counts about the reasons why they fought. He fought because it was all he had ever known, and the Insurrection meant to destroy the UNSC. At the time, he had never thought of it, that the Insurrection were people that his family had likely known. That he wasn't fighting for the good of the Outer Colonies, he was fighting for ONI's personal agenda.

    She had always called him a baby killer, admitting that the only reason she was in the UNSC to help fight was because the Insurrection claimed the lives of her family. She knew that what she was doing was 'justified' murder, but she was disgusted with the Spartan.

    Shaking the thought from his head, yet again, Blaine stared down at the gentle waves brushing against his bare feet. Only when he looked, it wasn't water he was looking at, it was mud. Looking up, he saw the other Trainees hooving it through the muck of the obstacle course. Mendez had relinquished the Spartans of their boots, and sent them out into the course, where at the end they would find a satchel containing necessities to survive a night in the woods.

    The exercise was to help build their survival instinct, to allow their primal instinct of fight or flight to grow. Blaine huffed as he sprinted through the muck, Kelly, unsurprisingly, had been in front of him. John slowly at her heels. In an instant, he felt something grip onto his right ankle, before yanking it out from under him.

    Growling with annoyance, Blaine landed on his back, staring at the sky above him. Only, when he looked up, Butch's beaming face glanced down at him, as it had in that previous life.

    "Heya Blainey boy." Butch grinned. "Your wife and kiddo said you ain't been in your right mind. Figured a good slam was in order. You all good?"

    "Yeah." Blaine nodded curtly. "Just having nasty flashbacks."

    "I know whatcha mean." Butch nodded, offering Blaine a hand up. "I've been thinking of Boot a lot more recently too."

    Blaine and Butch sat there, staring at the horizon of the ocean for a time, as the breeze picked up for a moment. The silence was broken, however, when Butch chuckled uncomfortably beside Blaine.

    "Y'know, had you not approached me that night. Had you not helped me with Katie." Butch stopped himself for a second. "I fear I may have been an entirely different person, Blaine. Someone hurt, who only hurt others to try and fill a void in my heart, something that I'm sure I'd have never gotten."

    "It's nothin' personal. But Blaine took someone I love from me, and it's only fair that I RETURN THE FAVOR!

    Clenching his fist, Blaine's eyes opened wide as Butch's hand clasped his shoulder.

    "An anonymous friend let me in to your little secret though." Butch's eyes glinted in the sunlight. "For what it's worth, please know that I'm an entirely different person than what you may have encountered before."

    Smiling genuinely, Butch nodded, before standing. Blaine's eyes followed his once old arch nemesis up.

    "A word to the wise, however. Perhaps allowing these memories to become open would help ease your conscious. Bottlin' that shit in causes cancer, Admiral." Butch said sternly, before smiling up the beach. "Yo Katie! Give Emma her bottle, I'll be right over!"

    Blaine sat there for a time, staring at his feet for a time. Perhaps Butch was right, maybe he needed to get some of his past grievances off of his chest. But this wasn't the place for that. Standing, Blaine saw the hard plastic disk hurtle in his face. Unaware of how to react, the disk smacked him in the bridge of his nose.

    ------------------------------------------------------------

    Admiral Blaine 115's Office
    UNSC Aura of Armaggedon

    "C'mon!" Dawn whined, holding her Dad's hand. "Why won't you let me join the Military, like you did?!"

    "It's not the life I want for you." Blaine said sternly. "Ask your Grandfather, your Mother, ask Uncle Darryl, Josh, or Phil. They'll all tell you it isn't as glamorous as the recruiter makes it out to be."

    "But I want to be like you, to make you proud!" Dawn frowned, as Blaine gently ran a hand down her cheek.

    "Hey now. I'm proud of you just as you are. You don't need an MA5D or Combat armor to change that." Blaine smirked. "Please, just understand that the military life isn't for everyone, and I certainly don't want it to be yours."

    "Then why did you choose?" Dawn asked, sincerely.

    Blaine's eyes cast down to the desk before him, as he sighed sadly.

    "I didn't. I was deceived."

    Dawn's eyes opened wide, as she took one of the spare seats across from Blaine's desk. Before Blaine could follow up that thought, his messages inbox flashed in front of him. Running a finger along the hologram in an upwards stroke, the message appeared in front of him.

    Good evening, Admiral Harlowe, sir.

    You may not know me, but I know you sir. The Master Chief's legend echoes throughout all of Human owned Space, but your heroics are just as loud, sir. Allow me to properly introduce myself, I am Benjamin Giroud. I am what you would consider a freelance reporter.

    I've done several articles, many stemming from the UNSC and ONI, the Master Chief, and even yourself, sir. As it stands, I'm currently running an article on the Master Chief, but I have some sources that seem illegitimate. I've been told you worked closely with the Chief on numerous occasions, and I'd really like an interview with another Spartan

    Best regards,

    Benjamin Giroud.


    That message had been received several days ago, via Waypoint. A completely off the record type messaging system. Blaine knew it well, it was not monitored by ONI, and therefore it was home to several scam bots. Blaine had disregarded the message, slightly chilled as to how this person was able to contact him, and whether or not this article was slanderous or not.

    What interested Blaine, however, was the new message he had just received, from the same individual. It was an attachment of sorts, a clip from the outer colonies. Blaine knew the cityscape seen outside of the recording drone. It was some obscure colony, on the outskirts of the Outer colonies. Blaine remembered that another peace summit was to be held there, to maintain the Treaty Hood, the Arbiter, and himself had brokered decades prior.

    Curious to Blaine, however, was the dark green armored Spartan seen entering the room. Using a dead body guard as a meat shield, the Spartan's pistol aimed into the room of delegates.

    "Put the weapon down, soldier." one of the humans replied.

    "No sir." the Spartan replied coldly, as Blaine's eyes widened, a shiver running up his spine.

    In a trio of flashes, the pistol recoiled, killing the three Human delegates present at the table. The Guards towards the back of the room opened fire, turning what was supposed to be a peace summit, into a bloodbath. Blaine stared in disbelief as the Master Chief slaughtered the Guardsman, escorting the Alien delegates out of the room without a second of hesitation.

    Long after the video had stopped, Blaine stared into the air before him. Had the Master Chief truly gone rogue, was it in part from the training the Spartan's had received? Was Blaine doomed to follow Chief's path, if he didn't conquer his own demons?

    Worse yet for Blaine, Dawn had seen the entire video. Looking up, he saw mist forming in his daughter's eyes, as she witnessed a Spartan, much like her father, murder three 'innocent' men in cold blood.

    "Dawn, honey." Blaine sighed. "There are some things you should know about my past as a Spartan. It's not going to be pretty, but I think you're old enough to know. Perhaps it may even help you reconsider your choice to join the Military."


    _________________


    \\'Boyo\\'

    Thanks for Reading!

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    Shad0wChas3r
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    Re: Regrets of a Spartan.

    Post  Shad0wChas3r on May 24th 2015, 11:34 pm

    "You're familiar with my acquiantance, the guy I call Shadow?" Blaine asked, as his daughter nodded silently. "Without going too far into it, he' gave your old man a gift... and a curse."

    "W-what do you mean?" Dawn asked, cocking her head slightly to the right.

    "I've lived two lives now, Dawn. Seen two very different sides of the spectrum." Blaine sighed. "Before you ask, no, I'm not immortal. But Shadow has some interesting abilities, some allowing him to change reality completely. Abilities, that, have put me through my life twice."

    You Spartans don't have space for your own baggage. 'Cause you will all be holding the weight of the world on your shoulders.

    "During my first time through life, I was quite immature." Blaine frowned, staring down at his desk. "I'm sure this is confusing to hear, as it's awkward to tell you."

    "Y'see, I was an orphan, living on the streets of New Alexandria."

    Excuse me ma'am. Can I please have a piece of your bread?

    Shouldn't your mother give you some, kid?

    She's dead, ma'am.

    What about your Daddy?

    I'm still looking for him, but I'm awfully hungry.

    "I spent many days living in an old tree, begging on the streets for food. When no-one would offer me anything, I resorted to much more desperate measures."

    "Your grandfather, Morgan, was an active soldier in the UNSC, though he served with the Legion prior to that. Your grandmother, unfortunately, had passed when the Legion had assaulted their home five years prior."

    Don't make the same mistakes your father did, boyo.

    "One fateful day, I was approached by a seemingly friendly man and woman. At the time, Lieutenant Jacob Keyes, and Doctor Katherine Halsey. They understood that I was an orphan, living in the street."

    I'm not sure he's a very good subject for the project, ma'am.

    While that's a befitting inquiry, Jacob, SPARTAN is looking for kids that won't be needed to replace. It'll save ONI some trouble.

    "They offered me a home, food, a new start on life." Blaine's eyes drifted to the patch on his dress uniform; the Spartan Insignia. "At that age, with that innocence, how could I refuse?"

    "In Spartan training, we were thrown through the gauntlet. We were tested to our absolute limits, and many of us didn't even make it out alive."

    Clenching his fists, Blaine remembered the deaths of the trainees, even before the augments claimed many of them.

    "They treated us like machines, fed us to keep us from dying. They cattle prodded us to keep us moving, they water boarded us, they put us in several life fire scenarios. There was one situation, where we spent the night on Mount Menachite wearing nothing but our skivvies."

    Dawn gasped, clasping a hand to her mouth.

    "It gets worse. Every one of these hundreds of recruits had parents that thought their children were still at home. Those recruits that weren't orphans had been flash cloned. These tube born children had been painfully grown and trained literally over night, to replace us."

    "Every painful moment, every strange lesson, just to be shipped out to some concerned stranger. They didn't even stand a chance, they were CREATED to die." Blaine's eyes cast down at the floor. "ONI had not bothered to clone Jorge, your uncle Darryl, or myself, as we technically didn't have Parents that worried about us."

    "You and your mother were playing Frisbee on the beach the other day. When I was a kid, I never learned how to play Frisbee, I was never given the ability to play with toys. I was trained how to dismantle and rebuild most firearms. I was trained to fire said firearms, and trained how to kill without mercy."

    "Take that training, and add it to some three hundred kids." Blaine shook his head. "Then, after we received all of that. ONI took it a step further, they broke us. To many doctors, we're not even Human anymore."

    "We were augmented. Our bones had the density of the world's strongest titanium, our muscles denser than the toughest metals. Our minds sharper than a butcher's knife. I watched nearly half of us get pulled out of that room, non responsive."

    Dawn's eyes became even more misty, as she understood what Blaine meant. Standing from his desk, he walked over, placing a hand gingerly on her shoulder.

    "I know this is a lot to take in, but I want you to hear it."

    "I know." Dawn frowned. "It's just, like you said. It's a bit overwhelming. What happened after that?"

    "We were released into the thick of it." Blaine said, staring at the far wall.

    "With ONI standing behind us, the Spartans were sent out to fight in the Insurrectionist wars. In my first lifetime, I thought I was doing right by the Universe by destroying the Innies. What I had never thought of, however, was the fact that many of the Insurgents were actually the Parents and friends of family of my fellow Spartans."

    "We weren't fighting to protect the people from 'radical terrorists', we were fighting to keep ONI's face. It wasn't for the safety of the Outer Colonies, or the Inner Colonies. It was all ONI's personal agenda. My fellow Spartans and I didn't kill terrorists, we slaughtered innocent people, who were guilty only of despising how the Government was treating them."

    "The terrible part was, I actually enjoyed it." Blaine frowned. "Like I said, at the time, I thought I was doing the right thing. I taunted the people, I relished as they broke beneath me. They feared me and my fellow Spartans. They feared their own children, and neither party realized it. Y'see, Darryl is the ONLY Spartan II that was recruited from the Inner Colonies."

    "Even when the Covenant first showed up, my hatred for the Insurrection still burned intensely. My reassignment to S.C.O.R.E. didn't help that, as most of the assignments I took up put me up against the Insurrection."

    "Of course, I didn't even realize it at the time. But my squadmates, Josh, Phil, Craig, or even Morgan were my family. Losing my Uncle, Craig, to the Insurrection only added more fuel to the fire."

    "Enter Butch, unlike how you know him now, was a real piece of work. He didn't directly align with the Insurrection, but he held similar morals to them. At the time, I blindly hated him, as with the rest of the 'rebels'. He knew the truth, and I had been too blind to acknowledge it."

    "It wasn't until I met your mother, that my eyes finally opened, my shell finally cracked. Up until that point, everything I did was essentially to the books, I was what Mendez would have considered the Perfect soldier. She introduced me to many things, and slowly reverted me from a killing machine, to the man you know me to be today."

    Aren't you coming?

    Negative, I'm needed elsewhere.

    Well, who are you?

    Lieutenant Blaine, ma'am. That's all I'm at liberty to share.

    ...Thank you, Blaine.

    "She helped me through some tough times, in that first life-time. She helped me get over the deaths of countless of my Spartan brothers and sisters during the battle of Reach. She... was the source of my clear mind. She helped me understand the side of the people, not the extremists in the Insurrection, and not the Tyrants in the UNSC/ONI persuasion."

    "Most importantly though, she gave me you." Blaine smiled, turning to his daughter. "Much like in my first life-time, you were my most prized accomplishment. I could have traded all of my accolades, my numerous milestones, I would have stripped myself from my ranks, just to be with you."

    "When you came into this world, you helped me realize that being a soldier isn't entirely useless. The reason I fight, is so that I can ensure a better future for everyone. I don't fight solely for the UNSC, I don't fight for the Insurrection. I fight for everyone."

    "My friend, Shadow, then presented me with our family's secret; GoldenHeart. I learned how to use those powers, the absolute strength, wisdom, and courage to overcome anything. I got cocky, thought that I was unbreakable."

    "See, there's a reason why Shadow allowed me to live this second life." Blaine sighed, a single tear flowing down his right cheek, warranting a stare from Dawn. "Butch killed your mother, Dawn. Right in front of me."

    It ain't nothing personal, sweet cheeks. Your husband took someone I loved away from me, so it's only fitting I RETURN THE FAVOR!

    BUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUTCH!

    D-Dawn, save our daughter... please.

    "Once again, I was no longer a human. In the blink of an eye, I was back to being a monster."

    Not that this isn't fun, Blainey boy. But I really should be- NGAAAAAAH

    You ain't going anywhere, Butch. Now shut the fuck up.

    "Butch had been working with a man named Walter. The Leader of the Legion in that lifetime. He was host to a creature of Chaos, Farius. Butch had you kidnapped from your mother and I, and brought to Walter. There, they had augmented you, like me, to fight me. But your uncle, your brother, sister, and I made a small invasion on his base to save you."

    Tears cascaded down Dawn's cheeks, as her father sighed, staring up towards the ceiling.

    "I died that night, Dawn." Blaine grit his teeth. "I didn't care about my safety any further, I had to get you out of there. I had to protect my humanity, no matter the cost."

    "B-but." Dawn frowned. "How're you?"

    "Shadow works in mysterious ways." Blaine smiled for once during the entire time he had been talking. "He brought me back to the point during Bootcamp, to give me a second chance at my life, to fix all of my previous mistakes. I spent so much time fixing the mistakes, I never took the time to reflect on them."

    "Am... am I a mistake?" Dawn asked, glancing down at the floor.

    "Now why would you ever get that idea?" Blaine shook his head, pulling his daughter over in for a hug. "You are the farthest thing from a mistake, you were a godsend. Which is exactly why I don't want you going into the military."

    "The reason why I needed to share this with you, because the Spartan in that video is a good friend of mine. John-117, the Master Chief. I don't know what his motive for doing those acts are, but he wasn't as blessed as I have been. He has always been to the books, and with the passing of his friend Cortana, I fear he may never find his humanity again."

    The door behind them shifted open, as Autumn stepped forward, hands on her hips.

    "Y'know, Blaine. It isn't wise to declassify top secret information like that. You know your room is outfitted with security cameras linked directly to ONI's feed." Autumn smirked. "Luckily for you, you happen to know a sub director for the office who can filter the feed. As it stands, some fellow by the name of Benjamin Giroud has leaked data on the Spartan program."

    "So he wasn't some spam bot." Blaine sighed. "It's just as well I didn't give him a testimony. As the current head of the UNSC, I can still do good things from my position, without spoiling sensitive war assets."

    "There's more. Director Osman, Ex-Lord Hood, and myself are holding a summit with the United Earth Government's representatives regarding these leaks. You are asked to be present, as current Lord Admiral."

    "So be it." Blaine nodded. "Dawn, please think about what I've told you. Don't think that a life in the military is all that the recruiter makes it out to be. When you've served your tour, if you weren't in the Officer's ranking, you will find yourself cold, hungry, and cast out by everyone. Civilians will treat you like 'baby killers', and the Government will think of you as disposable."

    "I will." Dawn nodded, before wrapping her arms around his neck. "For what it's worth, Dad, I'm sorry."

    "I wouldn't trade this life for anything in the world, kiddo. I'd go through it all again, just so I could be with you and your mother." Blaine smiled. "God knows I already have."

    With that, Dawn removed herself from her father and walked out of the room, leaving Autumn and Blaine to themselves.

    "What you said is true." Autumn smiled. "You certainly have come quite a long way since I first met you. I dunno what the last variant of myself was like, but I'm sure she saw the same thing in you as I do."

    "You are no different than her." Blaine shook his head. "The only one that changed is me. Y'know, it was good to get that off of my chest. When we were at the beach the other day, my mind was so fogged up with thoughts from my past that every action I took only threw another memory at my face."

    "So, you're better now?"

    "Well, in truth, I don't think I'll ever be 'better'. But my mind has definitely cleared up a bit, and I don't feel quite so... overwhelmed. 'Course, Mendez did always say us Spartans were like the Titan Atlas, we carried the weight of the universe on our shoulders, there is no room for personal baggage."

    "By all rights, Mendez was a real piece of work." Autumn growled. "I was really proud of Butch when he met his father, and DIDN'T beat the living hell out of him. Atlas may have carried the weight of the world on his shoulders, but everyone; even the mighty warrior Achilles had a fatal flaw, and the weight of the world could very well crush the Titan."

    "Heh, don't I know it." Blaine smirked. "Good thing I have you and Dawn in my life, to help ease the strain."

    With that, Autumn left the office, expecting her husband to follow her out and to the summit. Blaine stood, recapping quickly the discussion he had just had with his daughter. The mistakes of his past were what molded him into the man he was, and he was determined, now as the leader of the UNSC, to do what was necessary to keep history from repeating itself; for the good of everyone.


    _________________


    \\'Boyo\\'

    Thanks for Reading!


      Current date/time is November 19th 2017, 3:39 am