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    Official Forerunner Conflict Lore: A Titan Rises [Part One]

    A Titan Rises
    [Post Human-Covenant War]

    The Reconstruction Of A Species

    As the Human-Covenant War drew to a close in March of 2553 those left alive began to slowly pick of the pieces of the crumbling human race. Devastated by decades of fighting the Covenant, the return of the UEG is placed on hold, giving the UNSC the ability to more effectively rebuild humanity's ruined colonies and military forces. In an effort to jump-start a stalled economy, the UNSC begins to construct and purchase materials to replace those lost during the conflict. With everything from small-arms to Naval ships being produced, Earth and the surviving colonies soon find their economies once again on the incline. Seeing the dire situation faced before their people, the great minds of the UNSC Science Division quickly began to research cheap, efficient ways to Terra-form glassed colonies in an effort to recover what had been lost. Once developed, UNSC ships capable of active service are deployed to Inner Colonies with this new technology during Operation Reclamation which is designed to re-establish the inner web of Human controlled space. It appeared as if humanity would again rise to it's great potential with a focus on harmony and peace between worlds. This is was however, not humanity's destiny.

    During the UNSC's reconstruction of it's military might, surviving colonies were quick to disobey the UNSC's trade policies and resource sharing laws in an effort to increase the wellness of their own people and guarantee their personal survival. Although remaining loyal and allied to Earth, the colonies joined forces politically and demanded their requests me met should the UNSC wish to keep them within their folds. With too limited military remaining to safely protect Earth and maintain colony discipline, the UNSC complied and allowed colonies to manage themselves and their resources with an emphasis on shared survival with Earth. Although publicly a victory for the colonies, the UNSC and Earth's major political players secretly planned to reverse this change in the coming years.

    Surviving colonies began to produce and export numerous raw materials such as food, metals, and fuel, benefiting from their new place in the economic scheme by trading these products for refined goods and technological needs from Earth. While this became the normal pace of things, the UNSC began to use private sector businesses as fronts to purchase a surplus of goods ranging from mining materials from Mars to varies gasses from Jupiter. Once suitable amounts had been obtained, the UNSC raised taxes and tariffs on goods shipped to the surviving colonies, strangling their supply of manufactured goods. Raising their prices in contrast, the UNSC simply pushed the Colonies aside, pulling from their secretly amassed stock. It didn't take long for the Colonists to realize their dependance on Earth manufactured goods was greater than first though, and they soon fell into line. Now, as the UNSC outmaneuvered the smaller colonies in the Sol System, it was only a matter of months before control of major raw resources and manufacturing facilities forced other systems to re-sign regulations that gave the UNSC principal control over human resources and economic powers. Within months, the UNSC had retained economic power over the Sigma Octanus System and surviving planets in the Epsilon Eridani System.

    While the UNSC focused and organized their newly acquired economic power on rebuilding their Defense Forces, many private sector businesses found themselves turning a hefty profit. With a surge of food and raw materials flooding the market from Earth's colonies, and a smaller human population to consume them, many families on Earth and Colonies alike soon became accustomed to a more pleasant style of life. As many glassed Inner Colonies began the Terra-formation process, lucrative businessmen looked towards options beyond surviving planets and towards what would become. A new trust in the UNSC fueled by economic power and standard of living would meld surviving Inner Colonies closer together, something that would play an important role in later years.

    A Surge In Pirates And Warlords

    The smaller planets in the Inner Colonies were first to be Terraformed with the newer technologies while larger, more time consuming planets used older, more expensive techniques. This was an effort to repopulate the numerous smaller planets first thus allowing the depleted human population to grow steadily before there would be a need for larger worlds. As the Inner Colonies approached fifty percent completion, eager colonists and businessmen alike rushed from the "Survivor Systems" and quickly populated the stars once again. With a seemingly unlimited supply of land and goods for the smaller human population, and the knowledge that over time the population would balloon, the UNSC remained hard on their war-time policies of rationing and restrictions, lightening them only to ensure a feeling of abundance. It was not long before many new Inner Colonists were enjoying the same cushioned lifestyle they had left on their previous worlds. Many began re-populating with large, and prestigious families. During this time, the UNSC's production of arms spikes dramatically, and defense forces around Earth were nearly back to their strength of before the Human-Covenant war.

    Although there is much honest business to be had during this time, those looking for even bigger payouts need only a ship capable of slip-space travel and a trustworthy crew. A re-emergence of Piracy did not take long once civilian interstellar transport became available. Using normal freighters or outfitted diplomatic shuttles, Pirates began to explore ruined human systems, often finding the wreckage of a more than one UNSC warship. Liberating armor and weapons, these pirate vessels soon became armed and capable of intercepting freighters with UNSC resources. As the pirate "black-market" became more prevalent, bands of criminals came together under one leader in an effort to streamline smuggling and piracy operations. These new "Warlords" were quick to mark their territory and soon, word got back to the UNSC who scrambled to find a solutions.

    With a firm grasp on Earth once again, and a UNSC fleet incapable of large scale counter-piracy operations, many at UNSC HIGHCOM were at odds on how to deal with the issues facing Earth's Inner Colonies. With some supporting a policy of non-intervention until capable, others demanded a swift military strike at the center of the warlords' operations. After much debate and intelligence-gathering operations, it was deemed that many of the warlords were too strong for the UNSC to combat with such a small number of reserve defense forces. Emboldened by the lack of retribution, many groups of pirates began to push deeper towards the flourishing Inner Colonies, making brazen attempts at not just cargo freighters, but at UNSC arms depots and ships alike. With a cries for protection from Inner Colonists, and their legitimacy on the line, some of the UNSC's most secretive and well-connected leaders begin to look at an old program for assistance. A program that had become famous during the Human-Covenant war. The Spartans.

    The Return Of The Spartans

    With no remaining Spartan-II's or Spartan-III's in service, ONI Brass secretly created the new "Atlas Division" under the guise of a specialized covert infantry group. Once created, ONI dumped all data on Spartan-II and Spartan-III production, training, and deployments to it's AI Overlord "Cyrus" who then categorized and prepared the information for later use. Handpicking the best trainers and physicians, alongside various field experts and surgeons, ONI Atlas began to screen for candidates using samples from vaccination programs, educational registries, and colony population records. Once completed, Atlas agents abducted children in similar fashion to Halsey's initial program, and transported the candidates to Earth for training and augmentation. Combining methods from both the Spartan-II and Spartan-III programs, ONI Atlas, with the help of Cyrus, were able to improve upon the Spartan-II augmentation process rendering it more effective and less volatile, allowing for more survivors. The first class of Spartan-II's graduated with a successful eighty-seven Spartans. ONI Atlas now had their own private army of Spartans to deal with piracy.

    As the first class of Spartan-II's reached the completion of their training, ONI Brass began to transfer ODST units from UNSC Marine Special Operations Command into their folds and began training for counter-piracy operations. Upon completion of their training parallel to ONI Atlas, ODST units were deployed to ruined human colonies separate of their Spartan-II counterparts. As the two secret groups of the ONI Atlas Division began to track down both warlords and pirates, the UNSC Security Committee spoke out against re-starting the Spartan programs, stating the kidnapping and surgical altercation of children was barely an acceptable course of action only when faced with extinction, something they maintained this piracy was not. ONI Brass, upon hearing this, immediately cleaned house, destroying Cyprus and all the relative data at their training facility save for a few copies that went directly to the ONI Brass aware of Atlas. All other personnel involved in the training, development, and oversight of the new division were promptly assassinated under the guise of supplying pirates with weaponry and information.

    Although keeping their records clean, a select few ONI Commanders continued to use Atlas as their private army, supplying the group with their own UNSC Frigate and skeletal crew to continue operations against the rising Warlords along the edges of the Inner Colonies. Pushing their ODST deployments forefront to keep eyes off of Atlas, ONI provide the UNSC with a political piece in keeping restless colonies in line. Boasting that ODST units were tracing and hunting pirates, the UNSC knew that only a handful of teams had been deployed. This didn't stop them from manipulating the media however, and soon colonies began to calm, believing that large groups of UNSC troopers patrolled their borders and protected them from harm.

    The Spartans of Atlas however, continued onwards under the direction of ONI Brass. Quietly putting major dents in the Warlord's operations.

    A Struggle For A Ruined Galaxy

    Preliminary engagements with pirate bases and warlord camps were mixed between victories and losses. ODST units found themselves without support of larger UNSC forces needed to neutralize their targets, often outnumbered and outgunned against an entrenched enemy. Although this information was known to the UNSC, the controlled media continued to show positive results as they had during the Human-Covenant war. The most famous of these cases was the battle for the Eridanus System, where battles for pirate bases on the surrounding asteroid belt were proudly displayed as a UNSC victory across the Inner Colonies. In reality, three teams of ODST's had perished and the UNSC was forced to deploy a pair of Frigates to utilize nuclear missiles on the asteroid field, resulting in a total wipe of all pirate activity in the belt.

    The Spartans of Atlas however, were a different story. Scores of rebels fell under their superior training and physique. Entire bases disappeared and black market trading routes vanished overnight. Still held secret from the public and the UNSC HIGHCOM, Atlas quietly eliminated major warlords including the weapons smuggling ring in the Beta Centauri System and on Arcadia of the Procyon System. Word between pirates slowly began to spread that a new UNSC solider was dominating the battle field. Dubbing them "Execution Squads" the pirates and warlords quickly began to move their operations outside of UNSC controlled space. When the UNSC got wind of these rumors, they once again publicly denounced the Spartan program being restarted and sent a warning to ONI. The UNSC would be watching them closely for now on and the two groups began to crack.

    During the fight against the criminals spread out along the Outer Colonies in hiding, the last of the Inner Colonies had completed Terra-formation. Once again claiming Reach, the UNSC poured materials and finances into once again reviving their great bastion of military power, once again pushing the economy into overdrive. As the larger planets became open to colonization, a need for colonists to fill them became apparent. Extra benefits for numerous children and future colonists were put forward and a surge in human population quickly rose to the needed levels. As the years went on, humanity once again found itself back to where it was at the start of the Insurrection prior to the Human-Covenant war. The Inner colonies secure, the UNSC began to produce more arms, boosting enlistment, and preparing to re-take Outer Colony systems from piracy and chaos. Atlas, was in danger of being found as the UNSC and civilians pushed outwards.

    As advanced UNSC deployment teams made their jumps to Outer Colonies with their new Terra-Formation technologies, the ONI Brass aware of Atlas found a need to hide their teams as the UNSC began to probe glassed systems where many of their Spartans were operating in counter-piracy deployments. Creating false reports of strong piracy movements beyond the known Outer Colonies, ONI was able to re-deploy Spartans to deep space to hide and maintain the guise of a strong Warlord-Pirate opponent. In reality however, the threat of pirates and warlords that had been greatly exaggerated from the start looked to be diminished. It didn't take long for ONI to realize that the majority of the threat had in fact been neutralized, and the need for extended operations, especially by the likes of Spartans, were no longer needed to ensure a secure UNSC.

    As the final Outer Colonies completed the Terra-Formation process, the UNSC continued to build arms in preparation in response to a fabricated ONI report stating that a unified movement by the Warlords was amassing beyond their borders. With ONI pulling the strings in the "fake" conflict, Atlas leaders began to move their Spartans away from the phantom enemy, ensuring the secret Spartan force would remain hidden. As settlement on the Outer Colonies reached high levels due to the continued population boom and economic drive for materials to rebuild worlds, the UNSC feared that once again they would be facing an Insurgency that would split the Inner and Outer Colonies once again. Putting on a strong image to their citizens while believing to be vulnerable, the UNSC Security Council are approached by a young ONI Commander with information and a plan. One that could shape the fate of humanity.
    Last edited by GhostHammer; 11-19-2012 at 02:14 PM.

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