|This article, Siege of Sol, written by Lordofmonsterisland, was voted as the Best Event of 2015 in the Eighth Annual Halo Fanon Wikia Awards.|
|This article, Siege of Sol, was written by Lordofmonsterisland. Please do not edit this fiction without the writer's permission.|
Ostensibly the final battle of the, the Siege of Sol was the month-long, multi-stage campaign that served as the culmination of the entire conflict, dealing serious political, military and technological blows to both factions.
As the final days of the Human-Covenant War drew near, thefinal fortress world, , was destroyed in a swift siege. The loss of manpower and ships was immense, and once refugees arrived over the next week, moral began to fracture despite best efforts. As the scrambled to assemble some form of counter-measure against the oncoming panic and the looming alien war machine, time at last ran out. The Covenant discovered Earth.
At approximately 1000 hours on, the first forces of the Covenant invasion fleet exited near and began the siege. While at first the battle received mixed results for both sides, the UNSC pushed on and appeared to drive the fleet away within a day's time as the fled. However, a second, far larger fleet soon arrived and began a renewed assault against the human defenders. This conflict expanded across Earth, and , as well as other small skirmishes, continuing for over a month.
In the minds of many historians, the Sol campaign represents the culmination of UNSC military doctrine's successes and failures, as well as shedding significant light on their Covenant counterparts. It also serves as a lesson regarding the dueling roles of UNSC and UEG governing bodies: where the UNSC was busy supervising the defense of strategic locations and war assets, the UEG moved to undermine them, bidding for simultaneous escape and possible peace treaties. The enacting of UEG Article 17.J.34 by the- allowing them unlimited emergency power for the duration of the crisis - proved the only way for the UNSC to maintain order and continue the defense of the planet.
The Siege of Sol also helped to both cement the legendary status of thesupersoldiers, and to plant the idea that Covenant races were not always villainous monsters. The Spartans - most notably and the members of - helped to defend and liberated numerous locations around the planet throughout the invasion. Aided by eye witness accounts and ONI propaganda, their status as larger-than-life heroes became even more ingrained into the psyches of every day citizens. As for the Covenant, the movement towards the end of the battle managed to convince a small portion of military personnel and civilians that the war was the fault of the Covenant's leaderships, not necessarily all its members. This mindset was a very small minority, however, and anti-Covenant sentiments would continue to rise for years to come.
Prior to the Covenant's arrival in the, both the and managed to discover the location of Earth through completely separate means. During the , some of Truth's agents had recovered a single, unpurged database from the wreckage of the planet, the contents of which revealed the location of Earth, humanity's homeworld. Truth, knowing full well the size of the UNSC's presence there and forming his own plans for the Forerunner relic he knew it to hold, decided to withhold this information from the other , preferring to gather a fleet of loyalists in secret. This fleet was meant to be launched at his leisure to crush the human resistance and take control of the relics for himself, cementing his place as supreme ruler of the Covenant.
However, Truth's gathering forces were discovered by the UNSC AI, which led to the AI, the remaining Spartans and other survivors of Reach launching an assault on the fleet's command station, the . After an extended engagement, succeeded in detonating the Unyielding Hierophant, leading to the near-total destruction of the gathered fleet. Informed of the disaster, Truth scattered the survivors and began assembling a second massing of forces, though this armada's formation would be cut far shorter.
Regret also learned of Earth's location through a Luminary's translation of a Forerunner relic on. Unaware of Truth's knowledge regarding Earth, Regret set out to gather this large quantity of Forerunner relics on "Erde-Tyrene." Exiting out of slipspace on the edges of Earth space, Regret was shocked to find himself looking at a heavily defend human homeworld. Unwilling to back down, Regret ordered his fifteen ships into battle.
At approximately 1300 hours on October 20th, 2552,assumed command of the defenses aboard , designating to engage the enemy as soon as they entered the Super MAC kill zone. Within mere minutes, Regret ordered his fleet to engage the enemy, placing them within range of the Super MAC's and allowing Admiral Harper's fleet to move in as well. While the UNSC's naval forces held the Covenant starships at bay, the lack of fighter craft led to a large portion of smaller Covenant vessels slipping through.
As the Covenant forces moved in, Damascus and Naples Stations inflicted glancing wounds on two more. The initial volley fired, Harper positioned his Home Fleet to engage as the Fourth Fleet began making their way to assist. The Covenant fleet formed a defensive line with the CCS's in front: opening fire on the UNSC's defenses with plasma torpedos, the Fleet Masters immediately began charging energy projectors. Admiral Harper immediately deployed countermeasures and ordered evasive maneuvers, but five warships were taken down in the primary assault and two more by the following energy projectors.and managed to eliminate two with direct shots, while
As a second round of Super MAC's rang out from several stations that were previously out of range, shots from Skopje, Ankara and Benghazi stations delivered a kill shot to one of the wounded vessels and wounded two more. With the Covenant now down by three battlecruisers and three more wounded, Harper's fleet entered attack range and opened fire. Forty-six vessels - an array of , , , and - simultaneously rained multi-ton slugs at a fraction of the speed of light: as the MAC rounds hit their marks, they were soon followed by a massive swarm of .
Decimating half of the remaining Covenant fleet with this assault, the Covenant's counter-attack began on multiple fronts. As ordered by Regret at the opening of the battle, hundreds ofhad been sent out to eliminate the human's orbital stations. Armed with anti-matter charges, the Covenant strike teams were meant to disrupt leadership and distract on-station forces long enough to bomb them. Intent to break a hole in UNSC's defensive web, Regret's strategy seemed to be working as the anti-matter charges were placed on five stations successfully, with Malta Station being the first to fall to a nuclear-level explosion.
With the attacks on the Stations complicating orbital station support, the Home Fleet awaited reinforcements from the. However, the Fourth Fleet itself was forced to redirect to deal with another front of the Covenant counterattack: the large swarm of troop transport and air superiority craft headed through the breach towards Earth. Equipped with a large quantity of , and Scimitars, the Fourth Fleet was the closest and best equipped force to deal with the situation before it made landfall. On direct orders from Fleet Admiral Hood, the fleet redirected and engage the Covenant landing force, leaving the Home Fleet to deal with the increasingly grim situation on their own.
As orbital weapons support grew more sparse, Admiral Harper began pulling his warships back further into theeffective range, hoping to draw the Covenant warships into the kill zones for more distant stations. Fleet Admiral Hood advised caution, but with Hood's attention devoted to ensuring the safety of Cairo and the other orbital weapons stations in light of Covenant boarders, Harper was left to his own devices. Having lured the remaining Covenant ships into range, Harper's fleet attacked once again, but without the support of the Super MAC's the enemy ships were merely wounded as their shields flared to maximum. Bolstered by this noted weakness, the Covenant fleet charged forward, intent to break through the gap. Home Fleet's formation faltered, allowing both and two CCS-class to slip through with only minor wounds.
At the same time, aboard Cairo Station, Spartan John-117 had been defending against boarders and managed to reach the location of the anti-matter charge on board. Eliminating the defenders and disarming the bomb with the aid of his AI partner, the Spartan launched himself and the bomb into outer space and, with aid from a flight of Longswords, returned the bomb to one of the Assault Carriers, the Day of Jubilation. The resulting explosion destroyed the ship, launching debris through the surrounding area of space where it took out numerous Covenant fighter craft and damaged one of the CCS-class battlecruiser's main engines.
The destruction of the Assault Carrier was a severe hit to Covenant morale, causing many teams to pause in their activities to look on in horror at the sight. It was this momentary pause that allowed the remaining orbital platforms to disable their own bombs and begin to push the boarders back. The event also gave Admiral Harper the moment he needed to begin his counterattack: with support from three orbital stations, Harper unleashed a timed Archer missiles and MAC shots on the remaining Covenant vessels. As the Covenant fired lances from their energy projectors to retaliate, Harper ordered the badly damaged UNSC carrierto sacrifice itself as a shield for the fleet, ensuring low casualties. Blocking roughly half the Covenant's attack, it gave the remaining members of Home Fleet long enough to finish off the final trio of ships and begin moving to clean up the remaining small craft.
Despite this victory in orbit, the Home Fleet and Fourth Fleet suffered notable losses throughout, on top of the loss of Malta and Athens stations and severe damage to four others. Worse still, despite their best efforts, Regret's Assault Carrier- the Solemn Penance - and two CCS-class battelcruisers, as well as hundreds of smaller craft, had all managed to enter the Earth's atmosphere and begin the invasion of Earth.
Invasion of Mombasa
Given the intelligence that Cortana and a dozen other AI's had gathered during the battle, the UNSC was made well aware that the Assault Carrier that had survived the battle was the Prophet of Regret's personal flagship, Solemn Penance. Accordingly, its landing vector had been calculated and attempts at evacuating its target - the city of- began, but not before the first wave of refugees fled the city. As the starship loomed overhead and Covenant forces made their way through the city, thousands died in the chaos, either from the alien warriors or from turning on each other amid the confusion and fear.
The first responders to the invaders were the city's police forces, both military and civilian, backed by the armaments housed in the resident ONI facility. While primarily focused on getting civilians out of the city safely as the Covenant began air raids and landing parties, the police managed to hold back against the enemy for a short while before they became overwhelmed by sheer numbers and superior firepower. The police soon received reinforcements, however, as the UNSC Army mobilized their own forces: armed with higher caliber weapons, vehicles and limited air support, the Army pushed the Covenant back towards the core of the city.
As the Army kept the Covenant forces contained, a Marine Task Force from the UNSC In Amber Clad moved into the city, intent on neutralizing Regret's carrier. At the core of this group was Spartan John-117, whose Pelican was shot down over Old Mombasa by a Covenant Type-47B 'Super' Scarab, far from the target. The Master Chief and other surviving Marines pushed through the Covenant-filled streets, cleared out the old sub-bay tunnels and entered New Mombasa, where they proceeded to track and destroyed the enemy Scarab.
However, just as the Spartan was being picked up for a redeployment closer to the carrier's position, In Amber Clad's bridge staff detected a sudden spike in radiation around the starship. The Covenant warship was preparing for an emergency slipspace jump within the city, and with limited time, Captain Miranda Keyes recovered as many of her men as possible and slipped into the carrier's shadow to pursue it.
The slipspace blast that followed emitted large EMP and concussive blasts across the entire Mombasa metroplex area, temporarily shutting down electronic systems and throwing air assets off course. Both sides of the battle were thrown into chaos, as well as the civilians still fleeing the city. The destruction of the Mombasa Space Tether, damaged by the slipspace rupture, only furthered the paranoia as some of the lower pieces of the multi-thousand foot tall structure collapsed down onto the city and the surrounding region. However, as the armies began to recover, the Covenant began to push harder, slowly driving the UNSC out of the city. Despite the best efforts of various groups within the city, within three hours of the carrier's jump, the Covenant gained complete control of the city.
DELTA Base Defense
Meanwhile, as the assault on the Solemn Penance began, the two CCS-class battlecruisers that had slipped through set out on their own missions. While the Prophet's carrier had been worried simply with taking control of the area around Mombasa, these two battlecruisers had been instructed to deal blows to the human's military and civilian forces however they could. With this in mind, the two ships split up, attempting to draw the UNSC's attention away from Regret and his carrier.
One of the battlecruisers, the Semblance of Mercy, moved directly towards a large UNSC military base, DELTA Base, in the region of Islamabad, Pakistan. One of the largest military outposts on the Asian continent, DELTA Base was equipped with a vast array of aircraft and land vehicles, which was why the Covenant immediately targeted it. Knowing full well a direct aerial assault would be suicide, Raicha 'Turkalaee, the Sangheili Ship Master of the Semblance, ordered the CCS cruiser to remain positioned along the outskirts of the city. Quickly sending out three fights of reconnaissance Banshees, they came under fire from DELTA Base's aerial defenses around the city and several were lost, but enough information was gathered for 'Turkalaee to establish a layout of the city. Sending out vehicle legions, warrior kru'deshes and special operations lances, the Covenant forces began decimating city blocks and slaughtering civilians to draw out military engagements, who were then attacked by the waiting kru'deshes.
DELTA Base's response was swift. Recognizing the threat of Covenant looming over this much needed military depot, the commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel Elijah Haverson, ordered a secondary layer of defenses to be established around the city. To defend the combat engineers until the network was online, Haverson deployed two companies of Marines, complete with Scorpion, Warthog and Falcon vehicular support to hold the line against the advancing Covenant. For the next four hours, UNSC and Covenant forces dueled throughout the streets of Islamabad and the surrounding area, without any clear victor.
The stalemate came to an end, however, as the secondary defense layer came online. Composed of numerous automated anti-infantry turrets, as well as some experimental weaponry and heavier anti-vehicle turrets, the defenses pushed back the Covenant attackers. 'Turkalaee, seeing no better choice of action, moved his warship closer to DELTA Base to put his weapons within firing range: this was exactly what LTC Haverson had hoped for. Raising three experimentalto the surface and locking them on target, the three artillery cannons opened fire on the battlecruiser: unable to properly evade in such a short range, the ship's hull was breached within two rounds of shots, and by the third it came crashing down due to critical system's failure.
Battle of Taounate
While the battles in Mombasa and Islamabad raged, a different sort of engagement began at the city of Taounate, Morocco. A large metroplex area filled with civilians, Taounate was part of a small group of cities with no immediate UNSC or ONI taskforce within them. Filled with sixty million civilians throughout a terraced cityscape, the metropolis was built for economy and artistry, not military defense. So as the Covenant descended on the city - having targeted it specifically for the high concentration of civilians - their was little to be done but flee in chaos.
Throughout the entire Siege of Sol, Taounate stands out as worst incident of "self-inflicted damage": as the Covenant battlecruiser closed in from the horizon, people began to panic, fleeing however they could and doing their best to save their livelihood, family, possessions or whatever else they held dear. In doing so, survival instincts took over, leading to the unnecessary deaths of millions by human complications, not Covenant weaponry. As people fled, they would sacrifice others to the oncoming horde, not stopping to help the wounded nor caring particularly for what injuries they might sustain so long as they lived in the long run. People trampled others, died from dangerous falls, drowned trying to flee through the sewers, were crushed by infrastructure collapsing from too many occupants, and hundreds of other similar incidents. While exact figures remain sparse, historians theorize that by the time the Covenant began landing ground troops over a hundred thousand had already perished.
For several hours, the forces of Ship Master Maruk 'Quihamee reigned freely throughout Taounate, indiscriminately murdering and tearing apart the infrastructure. National treasures and historical landmarks that had stood for decades and centuries were all destroyed in an instant as Wraith mortars and Locust beams blasted through city blockes with ease. Five hours later, when the nearest military assets began to trickle in to battle the Covenant, an entire tenth of the megaplex had been cleared, replaced by a Covenant forward base.
By the time Brigadier General Thomas Chenault arrived with the second wave of defenders, the first wave had been reduced to a mere handful of men and a dozen smoking vehicle chassis. Knowing a head-on assault would fail, Chenault ordered his men throughout the city to ambush Covenant forces, directing them via Wombat UAV video feeds and orbital Odin satellites. Once the alien armies were spread thin, Chenault ordered artillery fire to assault the base, retreating when the Covenant attempted to counter attack. This pattern continued to play out over the next several hours as Chenault awaited UNSC air support.
The support never came. At approximately 0300 hours of the next day, the Covenant and UNSC were both running low on men and morale. A final defensive maneuver by Chenault led to the Covenant pressing their luck, and finally bringing in the starship itself to finish off the invading army, leading to a complete UNSC loss. The Covenant were forced to remain in place, however, as their men were wounded, equipment destroyed and the battlecruiser's armaments damaged. Four days later, UNSC air strikes would arrive to down the warship, leading to the near-total destruction of Taounate.
The Calm Before
The second phase of the Sol siege began almost simultaneously with the end of the first phase. As the Solemn Penance slipspace jumped out of Mombasa, it left behind copious amounts of troops, not to mention the other two CCS-class battlecruisers and their armies. However, Truth had decided that the time to strike Earth had come and wanted to ensure no mistakes were made. As such, while the main forces of the Covenant were regrouping at Delta Halo, the Prophet had ordered a small quantity of his Jiralhanae loyalists to launch ahead of the main invasion fleet to reinforce the small gains that Regret's forces had made.
Arriving shortly after Regret's departure, these new Jiralhanae-laden ships began linking up with the Mombasa forces and spreading into the African continent, with a small detachment launching into the Middle East theater to support Ship Master 'Turkalaee's war. This all came with a secret directive from Truth: murder the Sangheili and establish Jiralhanae supremacy throughout the fleet to allow for Truth's total control of the war effort.
But as the Covenant began to extend their reach across Earth, the UNSC's defensive hold began to tighten down. Within the first few hours of the battle, chaos had reigned with limited communications and shock adding to the defender's ability to coordinate properly. By the approximately 0200 hours of October 22nd, Lord Hood had managed to firmly established the chain of command and troops and supplies began mobilizing as fast as possible to hold back the Covenant war machine.
Rescue of Codename: VERGIL
- Main article: RP:Dwindling Flame
Make It Rain
- "Gentleman, we have crossed the point of no return"
- ―Lieutenant General Hendrik Drahoslav
Sierra-117 and the Portal
Deus Ex Machina
- Fleet Admiral Terrence Hood
- Fleet Admiral Jim Harper
- BG Thomas Chenault
- LTC Elijah Haverson
- MCPO John-117
- High Prophet of Regret
- Ship Master Raicha 'Turkalaee
- Ship Master Maruk 'Quihamee
October 20, 2552
- 1300 hours
- In the midst of a medal ceremony aboard Cairo Station, the Prophet of Regret's small Covenant fleet - 2 Assault Carriers and 13 CCS-class Battlecruisers - exits slipspace in orbit of Earth.
- The Covenant fleet dispatches boarding craft to launch boarding craft against UNSC Orbital Stations and succeed in destroying the Malta and Athens. This gap in the defense allows Regret's carrier to slip past, followed shortly thereafter by two CCS-class vessels. The UNSC Home Fleet engages in a protracted naval battle with support from the remaining Orbital Stations.
- Cairo Station manages to repel its borders and disable the Covenant bomb thanks to the efforts of John-117. The bomb is then returned to one of the Covenant vessels via extravehicular insertion.
- 1330 hours
- UNSC Army begin a counter-attack against the Covenant's ground invasion in Mombasa while escorting civilians out of the city.
- 1400 hours
- The two CCS-class battlecruisers that broke through the atmospheric defense grid move to establish bases in Morocco and Pakistan.
- 1430 hours
- DELTA Base in Pakistan begin their counter-assault against the attacking CCS-class battlecruiser
- 1500 hours
- UNSC Marines and Air Force move in to begin further ground warfare, focused primarily on Regret's carrier in Mombasa. John-117 moves into the city with Sergeant Avery Johnson to deal with the threat personally, but they are delayed by the appearance of one of Regret's Scarab walkers.
- 1600 hours
- John-117 nears Regret's carrier, but the vessel makes an emergency slipspace jump within the city. UNSC In Amber Clad recovers John-117 and shadows the Carrier, following it through the rupture.
- Covenant and UNSC ground forces are both left disoriented in the aftermath. Numerous air assets and dropping ODST's are thrown off course, wounded or killed in the shockwave.
- Edward Buck and Kojo "Romeo" Agu reestablish contact with each other after surviving the drop and search for members of their squad.
- 1630 hours
- A half dozen Jiralhanae-led ships, loyal to the Prophet of Truth, arrive at Earth. They continue the war against humanity and begin the systematic murder of the Sangheili commanders.
- Taylor "Dutch" Miles fights alongside UNSC defenders in the city's nature reserve before heading into the city in search of his squad
- 1730 hours
- Michael "Mickey" Crespo eventually makes contact with Dutch, and the two work together to defend ONI Alpha Site
- 1800 hours
- The defenders are forced to detonate the ONI facility to keep it out of Covenant hands
- 1900 hours
- On the roofs of the Mombasa Police HQ, the squad is reunited and proceeds to seek a way out of the city.
- 2100 hours
- Edward Buck leads Romeo, Dutch and Mickey to steal an enemy Phantom and escape the city, before realizing where Dare has gone and returning to Mombasa.
- 2200 hours
- Lance Corporal J.D. "The Rookie" awakens in his drop pod amid a silent city. He begins to piece together the whereabouts of his team.
October 21, 2552
- 0130 hours
- Having pieced together the story of his squad, the Rookie heads to the Superintendent's data center
- 0200 hours
- Veronica Dare and the Rookie descend into the underlevels of New Mombasa to rescue Codename: Vergil, a Huragok merged with the city's Superintendent.
- 0500 hours
- Buck and his squad rescue Dare, the Rookie and Vergil, and the entire team soon exits the city as Truth's forces glass and excavate it to unearth the Portal hidden underneath.
October 22, 2552
- SPARTAN Blue Team is deployed to defend Earth during UNSC In Amber Clad's disappearance. They participate in numerous combat missions around the world, including the Battle of Ross Island in Antarctica.
October 23, 2552
- 0100 hours
- Operation: HOLY FATHER begins in Sydney
- 1830 hours
- Covenant forces lead by Rimon 'Achachakee finish subjugating Beijing and prepare to move into Japan
- 1930 hours
- Lazslo-108 links up with other Spartan troops in Greece to harass the growing Covenant base in the region
- 2000 hours
- As groups of survivors collect in the Grecian peninsula, Operation: DIVINE SON begins out of desperation
- 2200 hours
- Final preparations for Operation: ETERNAL SPIRIT fall into place in Tokyo
October 24, 2552
October 25, 2552
October 26, 2552
- 0700 hours
- A UNSC air strike returns to Taounate, Morocco, and destroys the Covenant battlecruiser and its related forces. The city is left devastated in the aftermath.
October 27, 2552
- Josh-G024 and Amy-G094 are deployed into London
October 28, 2552
October 29, 2552
October 30, 2552
October 31, 2552
November 1, 2552
November 2, 2552
November 3, 2552
- SPARTAN-104, SPARTAN-058, and SPARTAN-043 partake in the Battle of Havana. Shortly thereafter, they use a captured Covenant Destroyer, the Bloodied Spirit to depart for Onyx.
- The Forerunner Dreadnought, with the Prophet of Truth aboard, departs High Charity for Earth.
November 4, 2552
November 5, 2552
November 6, 2552
November 7, 2552
November 8, 2552
- The Forerunner Dreadnought arrives in the Sol system and proceeds to Earth at near-relativistic speeds.
- Thel 'Vadam arrives at Mars and sends his UNSC allies to Earth to bargain a temporary truce as he tries to gain followers from the Sangheili on Mars.
November 9, 2552
November 10, 2552
November 11, 2552
November 12, 2552
November 13, 2552
November 14, 2552
November 15, 2552
November 16, 2552
November 17, 2552
- Sergeant Avery Johnson interrogates the Huragok known as Vergil regarding the Portal at Voi.
- The Forerunner Dreadnought arrives at Earth. Spartan 117 ejects, landing in Kenyan jungle. In the following morning, Spartan-117 is recovered by a group of Marines led by Sergeant Johnson.
- The Marines, with Spartan-117, make their way to Crow's Nest, where a plan for a counterattack is devised. The base is invaded by the Covenant, and eventually destroyed by the UNSC.
- The UNSC forces regroup along Tsavo Highway, eventually assaulting the Covenant-held town of Voi.
- UNSC Forces neutralize Covenant Anti-Air defenses in Voi. A battle group from the UNSC Home Fleet initiate the assault on the Forerunner Dreadnought, with no effect. The Artifact is activated. Covenant Loyalist forces flee to Installation 00 through the Portal.
- Immediately thereafter, a Flood-controlled ship emerges from Slispace over Voi, crashing to the town. Flood infestation starts spreading around the region. Covenant Separatist fleet, having given chase, arrives at Earth and glasses Voi as well as its surroundings.
- A transmission from the UNSC AI Cortana is retrieved from the Flood ship. The Covenant Separatist forces, with several UNSC forces with them, go through the Portal to the Ark.
November 18, 2552
- 0300 hours
- Covenant holy city arrives in the Sol system near Mars. After accessing data on the Voi portal from the earlier Flood ship that crashed on Earth, the Gravemind taps out all of High Charity's systems to slipspace jump straight to Installation 00.
- November 19 -
- November 20 -
- November 21 -
- November 22 -
- November 23 -
- November 24 -
- November 25 -