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    Official Forerunner Conflict Lore: A Galaxy Breaking [Part Three]

    A Galaxy Breaking
    [Halo 2 Era]

    Beating Around The Bush

    Very few major battles ensued as the two sides entered into a "Phony War." With Imperial forces simply patrolling their borders, and rebel groups striking seemingly at random, if appeared as if there would be no major confrontations to speak of, giving the Empire a false sense of security and confidence that perhaps the threat was in fact small in scale. While the majority of the engagements between sides were small and often without major consequence, a trio of major clashes helped define the fate of the Outer Colonies for the coming years...

    The Battle of the Foundation Water Sanitation Station took place on August 7th 2564 on the planet Harvest. As suitable water for rebel ships became scarce due to Imperial patrols, numerous groups teamed up to attack the Imperial WSS on Harvest while Imperial Naval ships were at a minimum. Disabling a pair of Imperial Light Frigates and an Imperial Cruiser, rebel ships quickly descended to the surface and deployed Spartan ground teams. A quick battle ensued before rebel Spartans secured the station and began to transfer water into their liberated tankers. As the 3rd Imperial Fleet arrived in system, the rebel ship Rainy Day engaged the Imperial fleet only to be lost with all hands. Their sacrifice however, allowed the rebel Spartans to jump out of system with their escort, securing a large water supply for rebel operations.

    A longer more high profile engagement in the Turf Residential Community raged from December 4th to December 9th 2564 on the planet Victoria and saw the first Spartan against Spartan engagement since their first battle in New Mombasa at the Empire's creation. Imperial Spartan teams located the rebel hideout after a series of deep reconnaissance missions by Imperial ODST teams. Ambushing the rebel forces in the Turf district, Imperial Spartans soon faced off against their rival brethren in a heated battle for the area. Fearing major casualties, rebel groups quickly surged in to help retrieve their already limited number of Spartans as the Empire controlled all data on Spartan production. Unaware of the large quantities of Spartans present, the Imperial Spartans engaged neglected to report to the ISS Wisconsin and numerous rebel Spartans escaped.

    In a carefully planned gambit, the Empire saw victory at the Battle of the Ivory Tower Administration Building which lasted only a few short hours on February 13th 2565 on the planet Coral. After receiving an anonymous tip that an Imperial Council meeting was to be held in the building, a group of rebel ODSTs eager to strike at Imperial leadership rushed to the location. Upon arrival and insertion, a cloaked Imperial Prowler launched a pair of Shiva Nuclear missiles at the rebel freighter and launched their own team of ODSTs after the rebel assassins. With the trap sprung, the rebel ODSTs were soon trapped in the building and captured. Interrogated and tortured, their bodies were displayed across the Inner Colonies as a warning to would-be rebel supporters.

    Although small in comparison to future engagements, these three battles along the Outer Colonies quickly highlighted major problems for both sides of the conflict. For the rebels, a staggering need for resources and the ability to train Spartans became apparent as time wore both down. The Empire on the other hand, realized that the lack of visible threat and organization of the various rebel groups made it extremely difficult to track down and combat them. All of that was about to change, and both sides would soon find answers to their problems.

    Moths To A Flame

    While the rebels continued to stand up to the Empire, striking at shipping routes, supply depots, and military installations, numerous Outer Colonists began to feel alienated by the Empire who blamed their lack of vigilance and loyalty as cause for recent rebel operations. Claiming that many Outer Colonies had been dealing with rebels, the Empire soon enforced harsh laws on production, which began to starve off Outer Colonies. Angered by this, many Outer Colony governors and political leaders spoke out against the new regulations as many Inner Colonies had during the years following the Human-Covenant war. Unlike then however, the Empire was strong, and soon Imperial Forces were dispatched to settle the uproar with force. With a more militarist policy enforced upon them, many Outer Colonists soon turned to the rebels for help and, in some cases, joined forces against the Empire.

    Renowned for it's prime climate for agricultural production, Harvest had long been a supplier of food for all of humanity. As new regulations slowly cut off their ability to make profit selling to Inner Colonies, farmers began to ship their food to rebel forces instead. Increasing profits and supporting the farming families, a strong bond between rebel and colonist formed between various rebel groups and the inhabitants of Harvest. In a bold move, the Harvest Farming Commission rebuked the Imperial regulations, publicly stating that the food of Harvest would be available to all mankind and not exclusively to those of the Empire. Outraged, the Emperor himself ordered the execution of those involved, having them publicly paraded through Harvest as an example of those who would defy his will. Many historians debate why the Empire dealt with the Harvest Uprising in the fashion it did, but all agree it helped the rebels more than it did the Empire.

    In an attempt to strike fear into the hearts of rebellious Outer Colonists, the Empire succeeded at showing it's true colors of cruelty and viciousness. While Outer Colonists in high profile positions quickly fell in line out of fear, many ordinary folk found themselves angered by the Empire's actions. Knowing that public outcry and protest would be met with violence and destruction, many looked to the rebels who frequented their systems. Having nothing but good business and relationships with many groups, Outer Colonists looking to defy the Imperial beast grabbed their arms and joined the rebels against the Empire. The incident at Harvest, known as the "Blood Harvest" in April of 2565 became a lightning rod for rebel groups.

    Often dwarfed in importance by events around the corner, the Battle of the Backwash Outpost on Arcadia is what many historians call the turning point for the rebel campaign. On May 27th 2565 a team of rebel Spartans located and captured a pair of members of the Imperial Military Command in an attempt to leverage the Imperial forces in the Outer Colonies. With the captured Colonel Aziah Barnbas and Major Jotham Trankoff in hand, rebel Spartans felt they had a chance at achieving a seize-fire. In a move that stunned even his most trusted advisers, the Emperor declared both men to be traitors, and ordered a planetary bombardment of the Backwash swamps. Following orders, the Carrier ISS Galleon destroyed the outpost. Chalking up the event as a victory, the Emperor displayed fabricated evidence to assure his Imperial Council.

    For those who knew the Imperial Officers though, a serious concern struck home for a few in the Imperial Military Command. Get captured, and be killed. It appeared as if the Empire would protect it's secrets with lethal force, even on their own if necessary.

    Double Crossed

    Many say the events at the Backwash Outpost triggered the events in the month of June 2565 although non can truly say for certain. Not long after the killing of the two Imperial Flag Officers, a major defection from the Imperial Military Command took place. Sparked by fear and fueled on paranoia, a decorated Imperial Officer stole one of the Empire's most guarded secrets. Colonel Michael Bitansky of the Imperial Officer of Naval Intelligence entered his Commanding Officers quarters in early June. Assassinating his CO in his sleep, he copied all relevant data of the Imperial Spartan Program and ran from Earth. With details of both the Spartan-II and Spartan-III programs, he was chased to no avail by Imperial forces. Joining with the rebels alongside most of his staff who had fled alongside him, Colonel Bitanksy now provided the rebel groups with the information and technology to augment, train, and field their own Spartans.

    It took but few months before the first of the rebel groups successfully trained Spartans with the help of those surviving from the age old UNSC program. With the ability to now match Imperial Spartans, many rebel groups began to aim for larger targets along the Outer Colonies with some being as bold as to strike towards Inner Colonies. The first time rebel groups fielded their newly trained Spartans was at the Battle of the Relic Islands on Madrigal that took place September 16th to September 28th 2565. A Forerunner communication tower array turned Imperial supply depot and listening post, the islands were assaulted by a collage of rebel groups who deployed from the Globe on outdated UNSC Albatross Heavy Dropships. Days of heavy fighting left the islands scarred and battle torn, as both Imperial forces aided by a Sangheili scavenger group and the new rebel Spartans faught for days. With little strategic importance, rebel forces withdrew, and Imperial forces were left to pick up the pieces.

    After a successful testing of their new Spartans on the Relic Islands, rebel groups organized a planned attack at a major Imperial shipping port under construction on Paradise Falls. On October 2nd 2565 the rebel Spartans deployed to the surface and infiltrated the area via Warthogs. Once arriving at the Headlong Port Construction Site, they quickly engaged and eliminated light Imperial guard stationed to oversee construction of the port. As distress calls went out to the Imperial Navy in orbit, rebel Spartans quickly fortified their positions and prepared for the assault. Deploying Spartans from the 5th Imperial Fleet, the Empire and rebels clashed once again for almost a week before rebel Spartans were fully eliminated on October 6th 2565.

    Reeling from the loss of a large contingent of Spartans, a rebel group boldly struck at an Inner Colony for the first time. Landing in Coagulation Valley on Chi Rho on October 21st of 2565 a strike team of rebel Spartans quickly took control of a large medical research facility. Liberating large quantities of medical equipment and substances, the strike team quickly fled and managed to link up with fellow rebel groups back on the Outer Colonies. Caught off guard by the sudden attack so close to Earth, the Emperor began to devise a way to counter the insurgency.

    Polar Opposites

    News of rebel success soon spread through the Outer Colonies, many ordinary folk quietly celebrating that there was someone capable of standing up to the Empire. As the Imperial forces continued to proudly wear their scarlet trimmed armor, many rebel groups soon began to wear blue colored armbands as a symbol against the Empire. It was not long before blue ribbons could be found throughout the Outer Colonies. Everything from hair ribbons to pendants had turned blue, and the support for the rebels grew daily. Emboldened by their success, rebel groups began to meet frequently, recruiting more to their cause and sharing supplies more effectively. The new medical machines stolen from Coagulation Valley soon allowed for faster Spartan production, and soon, rebel groups boasted their own legion of Spartans.

    Now capable of larger scale battles when important, the rebel groups stayed weary of their limited fleet and inability to continually supply a long term fight. In a pair of calculated risks, the rebel groups moved on two major targets of Imperial might on the Outer Colonies...

    Landing on Emerald Cove and Attacking the Zanzibar Power Station on January 23rd 2566 rebel Spartans clad in blue detailed armor ambushed an Imperial security team watching the station. As Imperial Spartans rushed in and secured the station, rebel Spartans soon called for reinforcements and the two sides entered a deadly stalemate. As Imperial teams swept the station, rebel units equipped with demolitions probed the perimeter to sabotage the station which supplied power to the Imperial Naval yards to the east. In a battle that concluded January 27th 2566 Imperial forces were dealt a major blow as a rebel Spartan team planted and detonated explosives inside the stations main control room, shutting the plant down, and crippling Imperial ship building along the Outer Colonies.

    In succession to their attack at Emerald Cove, rebel groups landed and began to assault a major Imperial transportation hub at the Terminal MAT Station on Jericho VII. Quickly inhabiting the buildings outlying the station on May 21st 2566 the rebel units began to plant explosives along the track lines and in the main central station with little opposition. Upon discovering PX residue traced back to a stolen Imperial shipment outside of Hat Yai, Imperial Spartans investigated. A short battle ensued as the rebel Spartans ambushed and killed the Imperial team. As the last explosives destroyed the main station and destroyed train lines, the retreating rebel Spartans were killed while leaving system by the Cruiser ISS Corbulo.

    While doctoring media in the Inner Colonies kept their citizens calm, the Empires firm grasp on the Outer Colonies began to weaken. With parts of the general population of their systems beginning to support the rebel groups, many Outer Colony leaders held their breathe in anticipation of what would happen should a new war begin, knowing full well how much they depended on the Empire for business.

    Chilling Realizations

    One of the largest blows to the Empire was dealt on August 14 2566 at the Waterworks Pumping Station on Eridanus II. As an Imperial Spartan security team secured the facility during a water loading of the Super Carrier ISS Halsey, a rebel Spartan team attacked. An underground facility, the rebel teams detonated shaped chargers along entrance routes leaving no way in or out of the cavern. Planning on eliminating and impersonating the Imperial security team, the rebel Spartans primary mission was to capture or destroy the Halsey at all costs. In a battle of epic proportions, Imperial and rebel forces clashed for the entrance to the surface in a days worth of close fighting considered brutal even by Spartan standards. It was within this battle that major Imperial leaders would take shape, more prominently however, would be a future Imperial Field Marshal, Cody Shaer who held tactical command of the Spartan team during the battle.

    Hiding from the public eye just how close the battle for the Waterworks Pumping Station had been, the Empire began to compile data gathered from intelligence reports, after action reviews, and current estimates from Outer Colony outposts. It appeared to them that the rebel groups now posed legitimate threat on the ground with their Spartans. Faced with a growing insurgency, the Empire began to pump more finances into it's military, squeezing Outer Colonies for more while maintaining peace. However, was about to show it's face from the shadows.

    Last edited by GhostHammer; 11-04-2012 at 12:53 AM.

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