- "They believe that this is the home of one of their gods. The way I see it, if those freaks want to meet God, then it is our duty to help them along."
- —Commander Palmer to Spartan fireteams at the start of the battle
The Second Battle of Requiem, also known as the Requiem Campaign by the UNSC, was a major space and ground battle between the UNSC and a coalition of the Storm Covenant and Promethean forces.
After the First Battle of Requiem the UNSC Infinity returned to Earth. Andrew Del Rio was stripped of his position as captain of the warship, and the newly promoted Captain Lasky took his place. Six months after Didact's attack on New Phoenix, Infinity was ordered to return to Requiem by FLEETCOM, this time with a full battlegroup from the elite Home Fleet. The strength of this battlegroup, designated Battlegroup Dakota, numbered one Infinity-class warship, carrying several Charon-class light frigates in its deployment centers, thirteen Halcyon-class light cruisers and twenty-eight Paris-class heavy frigates, plus a compliment of thousands of Pelican gunships and Broadsword fighters, for a total of 52 ships-of-the-line. In addition, several new Spartan and Marine fireteams were deployed to Infinity along with hundreds of engineers and scientists.
The Space BattleEdit
Shortly before 0500 hours (5:00 a.m. Zulu Time) on February 7, 2558, Battlegroup Dakota arrived in system and entered orbit around Requiem. Infinity emerged in the midst of a Covenant fleet and destroyed a CCS-class battlecruiser before said fleet could react. As the rest of the battlegroup arrived, Infinity launched its compliment of Charon-class light frigates and hundreds of Broadsword fighters, which were engaged by Seraph fighters. Infinity and the cruisers in the battlegroup began preparing a strike force for deployment to the interior surface of Requiem. Hundreds of Scorpions and Warthogs were loaded onto Pelican dropships, plus dozens of Spartan and Marine fireteams. As soon as enough Covenant ships had been cleared to make a clean shot for Requiem's portal to its interior, the ground forces were deployed in a massive invasion. As the waves of ground forces continued to swarm into Requiem, Battlegroup Dakota destroyed the Covenant occupation fleet, whether totally or not is unknown. By February 8, the space around Requiem was firmly under UNSC control.
At exactly 0500 hours (5:00 a.m. Zulu Time), a large task force of Spartan and Marine fireteams were deployed from Battlegroup Dakota to a Covenant-held continent (designated REQ-931-B) on the interior surface of Requiem. The deployment area was largely a barren desert with deep canyons and tall mesas, earning it the shorthand name, "the Quarry." At least five Spartan fireteams participated in the attack, including Castle, Domino, Majestic, Ivy, and Crimson, in addition to numerous Marine forces and significant armor. As the air space within Requiem's outer shell was cleared of Covenant forces more and more UNSC reinforcements arrived until the continent was completely devoid of Covenant. Infinity Science began assembling pre-fabricated labs on the surface and command posts were set up as the UNSC began to build up their presence on the surface. However the Covenant still had installations in the region that were being remotely powered. Spartan Fireteam Crimson was deployed and successfully neutralized the power sources before being extracted and brought back to Infinity.
As UNSC personnel spread across the planet they consistently drove the Covenant back until Promethean forces were encountered. These AIs proved more than a match for almost all UNSC forces except SPARTAN-IV's. Because of this, Spartan fireteams were deployed to areas with high numbers of Prometheans to clear and secure them. Several Forerunner structures in Requiem's frosty mountains were the site of some of the fiercest combat against Promethean forces during the entire campaign. This location, designated "the Fortress," was part of Requiem's teleportation grid, meaning that for every Promethean killed, two more could take its place. Eventually the entire region was cleared by Spartan Fireteams Majestic and Crimson, allowing Infinity Science to move in and set up research facilities.
As the ground battle waged on, the Covenant began to be pushed further and further back, although a large portion of its fleet was still biding its time, hidden from Battlegroup Dakota above Requiem's exterior surface. As more and more sites came under UNSC control, Infinity Science began selecting points of interest where they wished to establish labs. Because these points of interest were usually safeguarded by Promethean AI's or solid Covenant resistance, a large number of Spartans were deployed to secure the locations. Crimson made one of the most interesting finds: an artifact that was brought aboard the Infinity to keep it safe from Covenant attempts at re-acquisition and teleporting Prometheans. The artifact began to have alarming behavior once aboard the flagship, however, including an electro-magnetic pulse that neutralized the ship's engines and caused the disappearance of the Chief Engineer, Dr. Henry Glassman. The artifact ultimately settled down, becoming dormant but immobile on one of Infinity's decks. At the request of Captain Lasky, the ONI Prowler Aladdin brought Dr. Halsey aboard Infinity in order to assist in the investigation of the mysterious artifact. Meanwhile, Infinity Science continued to operate on Requiem's surface, with several notable science teams including Galileo, Gagarin and Copernicus. With the continued research of facilities, word of a spec ops Sanghelli team known as the "Silent Blade," began to circulate amongst UNSC personnel.
After a number of UNSC operations, intelligence reached Infinity that Parg Vol, a Sanghelli terrorist and known associate of Jul 'Mdama, was on the surface of Requiem and was responsible for a sudden Covenant counter-attack that had lost the UNSC several command posts and science labs, particularly in "the Quarry." After battlefield intelligence from Fireteam Delta pin-pointing his exact location, Spartan Fireteam Crimson was stealthily deployed groundside to assassinate the commander. However, Vol was surrounded by considerable ground forces, meaning that Crimson was detected before reaching him, and that he was able to escape by Phantom. After the Spartans had killed all remaining Covenant forces they found that Vol had amassed an armory of UNSC armor and ordnance. Vol continued to evade his would-be assassins, appearing for minutes at a time before disappearing later. Finally he was cornered by Crimson in a grassy region of Requiem designated "the Gate." Here he made his last stand against the Spartans, alongside Sanghelli commanders and Zealots before finally being overwhelmed and killed.
The Didact's HandEdit
Despite Crimson's successful hit, the scene of the battle was grim. Two whole Spartan fireteams, Castle and Mountain were obliterated during combat with the Covenant and intelligence reached the Infinity that Fleetmaster Jul 'Mdama had arrived in person to oversee operations on Requiem. Known as the Didact's Hand, 'Mdama was present when the Covenant captured Dr. Glassman after his disappearance from the UNSC Infinity. 'Mdama then provided Glassman with captured [UNSC scientific gear and ordered him to begin working on what the fleetmaster believed was the cairn of the Librarian's Durance. At some point shortly after 'Mdama's arrival, the Covenant secured the controls to Requiem's teleportation grid, allowing them the same versatility and ease of transportation as the Prometheans. This became a massive thorn in the UNSC's side as they began hunting down 'Mdama. Spartan Fireteams Crimson and Majestic became the fleetmaster's primary pursuers. After locating the him several times only to have him disappear, Infinity finally launched a massive barrage with the intention of taking him out before he could use Requiem's portal system. They underestimated the efficiency and alacrity of Forerunner teleportation technology, and 'Mdama escaped, but not before dropping a Forerunner-designed cube that the Covenant battle-net referred to as the Didact's Gift. The UNSC swiftly secured the cube and rushed it to the nearest research facility, Galileo Base; not knowing that 'Mdama had intentionally let it fall into human hands.
The Didact's GiftEdit
Once at Galileo, a science team began running diagnostics on the Didact's Gift while Crimson waited for evac. Their ride was postponed after Spartan Jared Miller picked up signatures from numerous Phantoms and Banshees, all en route to Galileo Base. Jackal teams arrived first, alongside Grunt Heavies and Imperials. Soon on their heels were Sanghelli and Hunter kill teams with Ghosts and Shades. After an earlier attack, the base defenses had been upgraded with large AA rocket batteries. Unbeknownst to any of the Spartans present, one of the base's scientists had rerouted the power from the defenses to stabilize a nuclear reaction project. Crimson reactivated the rocket batteries, stopping all Covenant reinforcements from arriving, only to recieve a frantic warning from the scientist telling them they needed to deactivate the base batteries unless they wished to be vaporized. As Crimson crossed the facility to reach the master terminal, several lances of Prometheans teleported in, surrounding them. Crimson finally reached the master terminal and deactivated the facility's defenses. Immediately the Covenant began returning with a vengeance. Majestic was deployed to the facility to take the Didact's Gift back to Infinity while Crimson covered them, however, by the time Majestic had landed and retrieved the artifact, the airspace above the facility was overrun with Banshees and Phantoms. After being pinned down and cut off from their Pelican within one of Galileo's prefabricated labs, Spartan Gabriel Thorne managed to board a passing Banshee and hold off Covenant air support while Crimson cleaned up ground forces and the rest of Majestic ferried the Didact's Gift to Infinity. 'Mdama and his second-in-command, Gek, watched the battle from a nearby cliff. As the last Phantom was destroyed Gek warned Jul that the Spartans were escaping with the Gift. Jul merely calmed him with a wave of his hand and informed him that it had been part of his plan all along to let the artifact fall into human hands. Once onboard Infinity, Dr. Halsey identified the artifact as the AI matrix of a Promethean Knight. After accidentally activating it, she found it contained human memories of New Phoenix from the attack six months prior. This caused Thorne to go and personally examine the teleportation artifact that had been recovered earlier in the battle, not realizing its true purpose. After briefly making physical contact, he was teleported to a volcanic region of Requiem designated "the Cauldron," without weapons or a helmet for comms. After climbing to his feet he realized that a lance of sword-wielding Elites was waiting for him.
Thornes absence was not immediately noticed. For several hours it was business as usual on the surface of Requiem. Crimson helped an Infinity Science team shut down the planet's teleportation grid and ward off a subsequent Promethean attack. As the team began conducting crucial in-field tests on the teleportation grid at Gagarin Base, a Marine fireteam was sent to secure the area, only to be attacked by the Silent Blade once again. A cruiser loomed overhead and began dropping reinforcements.Crimson simultaneously protected the remnants of the science team and aided Fireteam War Bird in defending UNSC tech. Spartan Fireteam Shadow managed to board the ship while Crimson and War Bird held off Covenant on the ground. The Spartans sabotaged the ship's engines and escaped before it self-destructed. With their air support gone the Covenant quickly became disorganized and were defeated by UNSC forces. Meanwhile, Spartan Fireteams Delta and Punisher recovered the remains of a downed Paris-class heavy frigate, realizing that the AA disabled at the start of the assault was re-activated, sending them back into the fray. Despite losing a ship and yet another artifact, 'Mdama was undeterred. He had managed to gain access to the comms of Dr. Halsey and anonymously plied her with questions. When he inquired what she knew of the Librarian, Halsey was so shocked that it aroused suspicion from the nearby Palmer, who promptly confiscated a data pad and escorted Halsey to the brig. The setback proved of little consequence, however, as Glassman managed to somehow activate the Librarian's crypt. It was at this point that SPARTAN Thorne's disappearance was noticed and Spartan Fireteams were mobilized to search for him. Fireteam Crimson arrived at a location in the "Quarry." Intelligence had located a large contingent of Covenant forces that appeared to be guarding something. After a fierce firefight the Spartans discovered that they were not guarding a SPARTAN, but a large stockpile of UNSC equipment. The fireteam was recalled to search another location, but while waiting for a Pelican, the Spartans were surrounded by dozens of Phantoms and two CRS-class cruisers. As wave after wave of aircraft arrived, Miller frantically called for reinforcements.
Crimson and IcebreakerEdit
Eventually Crimson was overwhelmed and subdued. Miller lost contact with them and the Spartans were beaten senseless. Fireteam Punisher, in the vicinity of the attack, reported to Miller of the Spartans being abducted. Upon awakening, Crimson found themselves secured by energy manacles within a large complex. Unsurprisingly, all weapons and equipment had been taken from them. Their regained consciousness allowed Miller to triangulate their vitals signs and order a airstrike on several nearby Covenant Lances. The violent blasts weakened the energy manacles long enough for one of the Spartans to break free and kill the nearby sentry, freeing the rest of the fireteam. Crimson then pushed through the large Forerunner ruins to a makeshift hangar. There they found a missing team of Marines, Fireteam Icebreaker, that Infinity command had assumed KIA. The Spartans freed the Marines including their team leader, who helped Crimson capture and escape in a Phantom. Miller had re-established communications at this point and began guiding the teams back to Infinity. The Covenant had not yet realised the captured Phantom was no longer friendly, and instructed the vessel to set down at a secure location. Murphy did so and Crimson disembarked, killing all Covenant present and discovering yet another cache of UNSC weapons gear. UNSC AI Roland then requested that the Spartans investigate several nearby terminals. The A.I. was able to transmit a computer worm via the MJOLNIR armor, giving him direct access to certain portions of the enemy battle-net. Crimson then fought through a contingent of Hunters and returned to the captured Phantom. Miller re-routed the Fireteam to several more locations before returning to Infinity. At one location, Crimson was intended to provide backup to SPARTAN Fireteam Switchback in disrupting a Covenant archaeological dig, however Crimson only found a IFF tags and heavy Covenant/Promethean resistance. The fireteam then destroyed a nearby Harvester that was assisting in the dig and returned to the Phantom so as to deploy to one final location.
Thorne and GlassmanEdit
At the Librarians cairn, 'Mdama and the nearby Sanghelli were awestruck at the spectacle caused by Glassman's activation of the artifact. So awestruck, in fact, that they did not even notice when the doctor backed past them and ran from the chamber. As soon as 'Mdama discovered that the artifact would only open to human touch, he flew into a rage and sent all nearby Sangheili after the escaped scientist, including his lieutenant, Gek. At the same time, Spartan Thorne fought empty-handed against the Elites surrounding them. He managed to kill all but two before being knocked unconscious by a blow to the head. The two surviving Elites dragged him back to their headquarters, reaching the front door just as Glassman did. Thorne re-awoke as the Elites refocused their attention on the doctor. The SPARTAN then punched the nearest Elite in the back of the knee, grabbed the Elite's Storm Rifle and killed them both. Meanwhile Gek primed Glassman's explosive vest via remote detonator. Thorne realized this and tore the vest from Glassman, flung it into the tunnel and hurled himself and the doctor out of the blast radius as the vest exploded. The explosion killed every pursuing Elite except Gek, who set off in a vengeful rage after the two humans.
Attack on the InfinityEdit
Just as the Captain Lasky was about to have Halsey interred in a cryo-tube, alarms sounded across the ship. Prometheans had gained access to the massive vessel and taken all hands by surprise. Most Spartan and Marine fireteams were deployed on Requiem and the Prometheans quickly overran most of the ship. All UNSC assets were recalled to the ship, but at that moment the rest of the Storm fleet arrived, composed primarily of CRS-class cruisers, and attacked Infinity. At this point though, teams on board made two discoveries: first the Covenant had internally disabled the all port defenses, leaving the Infinity open to attacks from the Covenant fleet, and second that the Covenant had UNSC nuclear devices with them from Parg Vol's supply and had armed the devices at key points throughout the ship. Fireteam Kodiak disarmed the nukes in the ship's armory while Crimson disarmed the nukes in the engine room. Members of Fireteams Delta and Punisher defended the area located around the artifact, Punisher losing two members onboard already. With the nukes disarmed and back in UNSC control, Crimson re-activated the ship's port defenses, which promptly destroyed all adjacent ships. The remainder of the Storm fleet fled as Battlegroup Dakota re-grouped. But the Infinity was not safe yet. As Lasky escorted Halsey to the bridge, it was brought to his attention that the Infinity was unable to move from its current spot because it was trapped by a sort of Slipspace anchor. As he turned his back, a Promethean Knight teleported inside the room, knocked Commander Palmer to the deck, grabbed Dr. Halsey, and disappeared again.
As the massive battle waged hundreds of miles over their heads, Thorne and Glassman trekked through the dusty canyons near "Sniper's Alley" in REQ-931-B to reach Galileo Base. Glassman sat down to take a rest and Thorne stopped to glance around. Realizing that something was amiss, he told Glassman to get to safety just as Gek emerged from invisibity, swinging his Energy Sword and slicing Thorne's rifle in half. Gek tossed Glassman aside like a ragdoll and attempted to truncate Thorne, who disarmed him in the process. Thorne managed to knock the assassin to the ground. The Spartan then tried to break Gek's skull with a boulder, but the Elite caught it, flipped Thorne to the ground and brought the stone down on his chest, stunning him. Glassman was attempting to reach the fallen Energy Sword, but was stopped when Gek stepped on his outstretched arm, breaking it. Just as the Elite was preparing to execute the downed Spartan, he was shot in the head three times by Spartan Paul DeMarco, who had shown up with the rest of Fireteam Majestic. The Spartans looted his body, then returned with the injured Glassman to an LZ for Pelican evac.
End of RequiemEdit
Jul Mdama, having completed his mission of retrieving the Janus Key, and of anchoring Infinity to Requiem, sets Requiem to fall into the sun and drag Infinity with it. Lasky observes all covenant forces evacuating Requiem, and with the aid of Dr. Glassman, tasks Palmer, Majestic and Crimson to disable artifacts anchoring Infinity to Requiem, whilst teams Delta and Punisher recover missing forces and captured personnel, leaving shortly after. Once their task was complete, Majestic and Crimson flew through a hole in Requiem (which is slowly being torn apart by the star), and returned to Infinity, which jumps to safety as Requiem hits the star, causing a supernova. Later, Dr. Glassman discovered the Janus Key is incomplete, and that Jul Mdama possesses the second half (courtesy of Dr Halsey).