Chapter 1

Crash Landing

2598. 45 years after the Human-Covenant war. When peace was made, the species that had been at each others throats thought that they would never have anything to do with each other. They were wrong. In the year 2569, the UNSC and the former Covenant species, formed an alliance known as the Allied Species. The main reason for the forming of this union, was that the Jiralhanae were in the middle of a brutal civil war. Jiralhanae extremists, led by the last surviving San 'Shyuum ,the Prophet of Salvation, led a genocidal war against all who had abandoned the faith of the Covenant.

Years before, undeniable proof had been put forward that completely shaken the foundation of the Covenant religion. It had proved, beyond a doubt, that not only was the Great Journey a lie, but that the Forerunners were no more than mortals and the ancestors of humanity. The Covenant faith lost nearly all of it's supporters overnight. Even most of the Jiralhanae, the most faithful of it's followers, abandoned it.

The Prophet of Salvation glassed several Jiralhanae Separatist planets, killing millions, with the intention of going on to wipe out every last living thing that did not believe in his faith. The response to Salvation, was just as amazing as it was unbelievable. Every last species, Human, Sangheili, Huragok, Mgalekgolo, Yanme'e, Kig-yar even Unggoy rose to arms in response to the Jiralhanae Separatists' call for aid. The combined powers of the alliance, temporarily dubbed Allied Species, was something to be feared. Salvation's fleets were smashed into oblivion, and his armies massacred. Though Salvation's army was nearly completely eradicated, his body was never found, yet he was presumed dead.

Many expected the alliance to dissolve a few weeks after Salvation's disappearance. To the surprise of many, it lasted. Having done battle side by side, had caused many of the species to overlook the hatred they had felt towards one another, and see each other in a new light. Several months after the defeat of Salvation, the declaration became official, the Allied Species was now a galactic power.

Humans especially welcomed this as assistance for recovery, which had been plentiful even before the founding of the alliance, increased ten fold. By 2595, humanity had been restored to it's former power. Fresh colonies had been built on planets that had finally become de-glassed after years of painstaking effort, as well as new planets. Humanity has also experienced massive technological advances, both civilian and military. They most well known form of this technology being applied, is Project Olympus.

Project Olympus was created in order to bolster the effectiveness of UNSC infantry. While it had been undeniable that SPARTANS were next to unstoppable, they simply couldn't be everywhere at once. Therefore it had been decided that the average soldier needed upgrades, for they had been massively outclassed in the Human-Covenant war.

Project Olympus was a 100% success. Every single UNSC soldier now receives genetic augmentations, with a 100% survival rate. These augmentations fall short of the ones SPARTANs received, but they still are very helpdul. They include, increased mussle mass, increased lungcapacity, a decrease in reflex time by 30% and enchanced senses. Marines wear Mark V SPI armor, now upgraded to enhance speed and strength, and are equipped with personal shielding, although it still falls short of MJOLNIR's capabilities. ODSTs have had their regular armor upgraded with personal shielding, improved alloys, and an improved HUD.

The members of the Allied Species are currently prospering, some of them experiencing a freedom they have only dreamed of. The Unggoy, normally only taught how to pull a trigger on a gun, and throw a grenade before being sent out to die, are now trained much more thoroughly in the military, making them much more capable. With the majority of their Extremists dead or in hiding, the Jiralhanae began a slow, yet steady trek towards a more peaceful look upon things. They are no longer complete and utter savages as they once were, but they have yet to become pacifists.

This story begins on the CSS-Battle Cruiser Staggering Strike currently on a deep space mission, searching for any other space faring civilizations.

"You know," said ODST Lance Corporal, Aaron Colton, as he lined up a shot on a shooting range "It's creepy when you think about it. Odds are our parents tried to kill each other, and we're best friends."

Ramore 'Altre, a fully armored SpecOp Sangheili, wearing a combat helmet instead of the regular assault, looked up from the holo-pad he was reading off of. "Yes it is indeed ironic," he said in a level, calm voice seen in most Sangheili. They were in the Staggering Strike's shooting range room, Aaron was practicing his shooting, while Ramore was reading human literature, which fascinated him.

Ramore and Aaron were an odd pair. On the outside they had nothing in common, Aaron being rather young, only 20, while Ramore was nearing his 40s. Then there was the obvious fact that Aaron was a Human and Ramore a Sangheili. This gap alone would prevent a stable relationship from being formed yet somehow they had pulled it off, possibly due to the fact that they had fought back to back in several engagements against Xenophobic terrorists. The respect that other species felt for each other rarely expanded beyond the militarry, as many civilians were still bitter about the Human-Covenant war. Aaron was a sniper who also doubled as a combat medic, while Ramore was a swordsman, who had also managed to become an ace pilot. Ramore was also a decent shot with a carbine, and Aaron was pretty good with an SMG to boot. Both of them had not been in the military for long, but they both had decent records, both of them stating that they worked well together in the field.

Ramore and Aaron were so close, that Aaron had received an honor that precious few humans had experienced. He had been deemed an honorary member of the 'Altre family and had had their family crest, a green energy sword crossing with a purple one, branded on his armor. Ramore also had one of these symbols branded on his right shoulder plate.

A moderate level vibration shook the Staggering Strike for a few seconds before it dissipated. "Must've dropped out of slip space," Aaron muttered. A few minutes pasted, in which Aaron continued to shoot targets with his sniper rifle, and Ramore continued to read. Then, without warning, red lights and sirens burst into life all over the ship.

"Attention all hands!" came the thundering voice of the Sangheili shipmaster thought the intercom and all communication devices connect to the Battle-Net "When we left slip space, three ships of unknown origin approached us! They have not responded to hails and they are preparing their weapons for firing! Prepare for combat!" The second these words were spoken, an explosion rocked the ship.

"They must have caught us with our shields down!" shouted Ramore, dropping the holo-pad, and pulling a carbine off his back, but not before checking to make sure that his dual energy swords were still attached to his thighs. Aaron slapped his sniper rifle onto the magnetic-clamp on the back of his armor, before de-attaching the SMG on his own thigh.

A second explosion rocked the ship, this one much stronger than the last, and panicked voices rang out across the Battle-Net. "That last one hit our engines! We're going down!"

"Grab onto something!" Aaron shouted, taking a firm grip on the doorframe, while Ramore held the other end.

"All hands, brace for impact!" shouted the shipmaster over the Battle-Net, as Aaron and Ramore felt the ship slowly tip forward. The floor began to slide out beneath them, causing them to stand at an angle, until soon their feet were dangling in midair. At this point the Staggering Strike was in a complete nose-dive heading straight for the surface of a planet that it had been shot down in orbit of.

"Oh man this is gonna leave a mark!" Aaron shouted, as he felt the ship pick up velocity as it plummeted towards the planet's surface. Then the ship hit solid ground. Aaron and Ramore were thrown forward, hitting the walls with a tremendous thud and leaving massive dents. There was a horrible grinding sound as the ship plough through what sound like rock, and them silence.

Aaron and Ramore got to their feet, weapons ready. The crash had caused some of the lights to go out, and sparks were emitting from wires that had become lose. "All combat units!" rang a different voice over the Battle-Net "The Shipmaster was killed in the crash, I will be taking his place. We have been shot down, and landed on an unknown planet. We are sending out an SOS single, but the ships that attacked us are sending down dropships, most likely to hunt for survivors. We have established three points from which we can defend the remains of the ship, the Infirmary, the ammunition storage room, and the Cafeteria, head to the one closest to you as quickly as possible!"

"The Infirmary is the one closest to our position!" Ramore shouted as he and Aaron dashed out of the shooting range. As the made their way to the infirmary. As the made their way through the destroyed ship, they saw that they had gotten off easy. Soldiers of all species were being rushed to the infirmary, one Magegleko holding half a dozen Unggoy, who were all bleeding from various areas.

Along with several dozen other soldiers, half of them being transported there for treatment, Ramore and Aaron, ran into the Infirmary. There were around 50 tables, half of them already full, in the Infirmary. Apparently the crash had completely torn off the far wall, giving a view onto a long sandy terrain, and leaving the ship completely open to enemy entry. A makeshift barricade was being made of various tables, and scrap metal that had been torn out of the wall by the stronger species. Plasma and machine gun turrets, one of each, had been set up and were being manned, by a Jiralhanae and a Marine respectively.

"What is our condition?" Ramore asked a Sangheili Zealot, who was organizing the defenses.

"Ill," replied the Zealot "Half of our number perished in the crash along with the Shipmaster. Nearly all of our vehicles were destroyed, or made completely useless. However, if we can maintain strategic positions throughout the ship, keeping an even number of supplies flowing in-between them, then we should be able to hold out against their ground assault until help arrives."

"Incoming!" shouted the Marine on the machine gun, as it roared to life. Enemy drop ships had landed as enemy soldiers were making their was out, firing at the hole in the hull. Their fire was very inaccurate though, and the Allied Species soldiers quickly returned fire, the enemy soldiers quickly collapsing underneath the strain. But as they fell, they did not bleed, for they were…

"Machines?" shouted Aaron, as he fired a burst from his SMG. It did not fire normal bullets however. Humans had long since upgraded their firearms, to fire superheated bullets, mimicking the Jiralhanae Spiker. They were decent against shields and very effective at tearing through metal, and due to the fact that they could be made smaller and not lessen in damage, they also allowed for larger clip sizes. "Who the hell uses machines for soldiers?"

"A good question, but now is not the time to be asking it, look!" shouted Ramore. More dropships were landing, but these ones were landing father away, out of range of most small arms, with the possible exception of a sniper. More machines, some an odd pale color, some silver, and some a rust like color that seemed to roll and deploy. "Unless I am mistaken," said Ramore "I would say they are attempting to place a siege on us."

"It certainly looks that way," said the Zealot. "Soldiers of the Allied Species, ready yourselves. A long hard battle awaits us."

"I'm not waiting for them to come to us," said Aaron, as he swapped his SMG for his sniper rifle and fired a shot. Despite the fact that they were nearly half a mile away, one of the machines stumbled backwards and fell over, not to get up again.

Ramore laughed "An excellent shot, but I hope you have more in you, we shall be needing many more."

"You insult me Ramore," said Aaron, his grin hidden by his polarized helmet, as he fired another shot at the machines, who had began to march forward.

High up in orbit, on the bridge one of the ships that had grounded the Staggering Strike a large machine shouted at a pale green humanoid sitting in a captain's chair. "Tar Muk, why did you engage that ship! It was a military vessel you fool! You may have just angered the organization that commanded it into joining the Republic!"

"I understand my mistake General Grievous," said Tar Muk cautiously, but I have a plan to rectify my error. Already I have droids swarming the downed ship. They will kill everything down there and then there will no record of our sin here. Better yet, we might even be able to fool their leaders into thinking that the Republic did it."

"You Neimoidians my be good business men, but you are poor military commanders," said Grievous angrily. "Mark my words, if this situation grows out of control, it will come down on your head!" With that, the angry cyborg general, walked out of the room.

Tar Muk gulped nervously, and tapped a button of the armrest of his chair. "Yes, double the number of droids to be deployed," he said.

Light-years away, on the bridge of a triangle shaped ship, a bearded man shouted at a man with a mechanical arm. "For goodness sake Anakin, I can't keep coming by to pick you up every time you decide to smash your ship into a CIS command ship!"

"Aw come on Obi-Wan," said Anakin "This was only the second time."

"What about Ryloth?" asked Obi-Wan.

"Ok, third time," said Anakin, a little sheepishly.

"Oh, by the Force Anakin, your Padawan acts more than mature than you now, she's been more mature than you for two years, since she was 15! Where is Ahsoka anyway?"

"Her room," said Anakin "She's dead tired."

"No doubt," said Obi-Wan "I know I would be if my master made a hobby of crashing his ship. Honestly Anakin, the council sends you on a simple mission to transport the Senator of Naboo to Tatooine for negotiations with the Hutts, yet somehow who get sidetracked, decided to attack a CIS fleet all by yourself, lose your ship, and cause your Padawan and the Senator to collapse in their rooms from exhaustion!"

"Hey we took out the entire CIS fleet didn't we?" asked Anakin.

"That's not the point the point is…" But Obi-Wan was intercepted when a button began to glow and beep on the command board. "An incoming transmission," muttered Obi-Wan, as he and Anakin ran to the command board, and Obi-Wan pressed the button.

A powerful yet calm voice came out of the speakers. "This is the second in command of the CSS-battle cruiser Staggering Blow. We have been shot down by unknown enemies and have crash landed on an uncharted desert planet. The hostile forces are surrounding the wreckage of our vessel and are trying to eliminate us. We will hold our ground as long as we can, but we require assistance. Requesting any Allied Species warships within range to assist immediately! This message repeats. This is the second in command of the CSS…" Obi-Wan, turned off the message and looked at the command board.

"It's coming from Tatooine," he said "It might be the CIS attacking those people."

"On it," said Anakin as he activated his communicator "Snips you there?"

"What?" came a tired voice from the other end.

"We're responding to an SOS from Tatooine, so I'm going to need you up here in ten minutes."

Ahsoka gave a barely audible groan before saying "I'll be right there Skyguy," and then the connection closed.

"Cody," said Obi-Wan. "Take us to Tatooine."

New Characters, new Plot Elements, New Fighting for a Purpose. This is a rewrite of my best fanfic to date, I will try to balance this will all of ther other fan fics I'm writing but I'm not worried. Please tell me what you think about it so far.