[AN] First and foremost I would like to thank my reviewers and followers for their support and while I know that my grammer and spelling is practically perfect if anyone would like to Beta please contact me. Another Chapter is here and the Voting Pole is Closed the winner of the Pairings is Lex/Loki/Aurora. If you don't like it you should have voted. Also I will not butcher this story so those that think introducing this pairing will kill it need not worry. I would like more reviews please, criticism is welcome as long as I don't roast like a burnt Steak. I would like to thank Red vs. Blue and Jeff Williams' songs Agent Tex and Mental Meta Metal for the great music to listen to while writing the fight scenes. Finally I will start to cut down these AN at the beginning and will then add clarifications forparts of the story that I have created but aren't well explained.

HALO- Computers
HALO- Comm Channels
HALO- Talking

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Chapter Eight: Regret

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Phoenix Squad
Location: Orbital Drop Pods
Time: 1550 Hours, 3:30pm
Mission Status: Deployed
Status: Phoenix One- Healthy
Phoenix Two- Healthy

Falling through space towards the city of New Mombasa Lex and Loki listened to the comm channels trying to get as much info as possible.

"It's a message but it just says regret, regret, regret. Sergeant, any ideas what it means?" Commander Keyes asked.

"Dear Humanity, we regret being alien bastards, we regret coming to Earth, and we most certainly regret the Corps who just blew up our raggedy ass fleet," Sgt. Johnson replied as the marines next to him agreed. "Hoo Rah."

Hearing the Sergeants reply, Loki and Lex let out a chuckle at his quick-witted humor. Looking at the altimeter they pulled a latch causing the Drop Pod to slow down as its wind resistance was increased. Through the window of the Pod they watched as Phantom drop ships flew around them dropping off the murderous inhabitants within. Moments later Lex's Pod slammed into a group of Grunts killing them while Loki's landed on the Elite leading them.

"Show time," they said pulling the levers that caused the doors to go shooting off into some Jackals that had come to investigate them.

Loki and Lex shouldered their Battle Rifle and DMR, respectively, and began to open fire on the Grunts in the open while taking cover behind their drop pods.

"Jackals four o'clock," Lex shouted as she returned fire.

Loki pulled a grenade of his belt before pulling the pin and throwing it into the middle of the Jackals. Spotting a pair of Jackal snipers running across the rooftops he turned to Lex while switching to his sniper. "Cover me," he said before leaning out of cover. Aiming down the sights he located the Jackals and fired off a round hitting both as they jumped across a rooftop gap.

As he leaned out Lex noticed a couple of Elites that had gotten close to their location. Using her hologram she sent behind some Covenant crates, seeing the Elites walk up behind it she pulled out her sword and shotgun. Waiting for the Elites to try and assassinate her decoy she appeared behind them. "Boo," she shouted cause the Elites to spin around only for one to be decapitated by her sword and the other killed by shotgun to the face, leaving blood and brain on the crates. Looking over to Loki she watched as he jumped over the last group of Jackals dropping a grenade and then stabbing the Elite General in the mouth with his knife.

"I would show myself but I would not want any prying eyes to see me so I'm broadcasting through your comms," Aurora said. "Now I have been listening to the Covenant comms and I have located a downed Phantom that is still operable, if you're an AI. It is however surrounded by Covenant; putting a waypoint on your HUD's now."

A red arrow appeared on their HUD's indicating that the downed Phantom was located four clicks northeast from their current location. "Let's get moving then," Loki said as he started walking towards the waypoint.

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Heading towards the downed Phantom they met little resistance because, according to Aurora the Marines and Master Chief were giving the Covenant hell. The fact that one of the grenades Loki had used destroyed a comm tower therefore causing the Covenant to lose more than a few platoons without an idea why; however when behind enemy lines it was only a matter of time before they ran into resistance. That resistance happened to be in the form of Hunters, six to be precise.

Coming around a corner Lex spotted the hunters and jumped back and turned around towards Loki. "There are six Hunters around the corner how are we gonna do this," she asked.

"I have an idea but I need to borrow your shotgun," he replied and grabbed said shotgun when she handed it to him. "Ok first I will sneak behind them invisible; as soon as you see the grenades go off I need you to send your hologram across the street. Once you do that head down the alley next to us and when their attention is on me I need you to flank them from behind with the sword."

"Alright let's do it."

Activating his invisibility, Loki stealthily moved through the group of Hunters to the ones in the back. Pulling a pair of grenades off his belt he slammed them into the midsection of two Hunters before rolling out of the way as they exploded. Still invisible the other Hunters looked everywhere for the cause of two brothers deaths. Seeing Lex's hologram run across the street they headed towards it only for another one to drop dead with the sound of a shotgun. Spinning around the Hunters stared at Loki as they charged their fuel rod cannons. Jumping over the green plasma he saw another Hunter drop dead as he was cut in half. Landing next to one of them he sidestepped as it swung its large shield like a club. Jumping on top he shoved the barrel of the shotgun into the exposed neck of the Hunter and fired four shots. Turning around he saw that Lex had dispatched the last of the Hunters.

"Nice job," Loki said as he handed her back the shotgun.

"I know, not to bad yourself," She replied punching his shoulder.

"Yea yea, you're both killing machines; now can we continue," Aurora said through the comms. "The Phantom is just a couple blocks away."

"Ok, I say we take to the roofs for an ambush you take the right side of the street I'll take the left," Loki said receiving a nod from Lex before they went their separate ways.

Grabbing a Plasma Battery Lex went through a door that had been broken open. Running up the seven flights of stairs she burst through the locked rooftop door. Looking across the roofs she noticed Loki was already sprinting across rooftops and followed his lead while carrying the Plasma Battery. After sprinting across the rooftops for a couple blocks they came to where the Phantom was located, surrounded by Covenant. Looking around she noticed a couple of Jackal snipers fall to the roofs dead and the Loki reappearing from his camouflage only for him to reactivate it as he got into position.

Waiting for the signal Lex prepared to throw the Plasma Battery, noticing a squad of Elites heads exploded she threw the explosive Plasma Battery off the roof before drawing her Battle Rifle and fired at it causing it to explode killing half a dozen Jackals. Aiming at a group of Grunts, she emptied her magazine before reloading and taking aim at a pair of Elites only for them to fall to the ground.

"Asshole those were mine," Lex shouted through comm.

"They WERE yours," Loki replied as he reloaded his sniper rifle. "Now they're mine."

Growling in frustration Lex tossed a grenade at the turret that was now firing at her. Popping back up from cover her shot the remaining few Jackals in the head.

"All clear,"she said.

"All clear from my angle as well...Wait a sec," he replied as he fired two more rounds and an invisible Elite fell to the ground sword still in hand. "Alright, now it's clear."

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"How's it look Aurora," Loki asked as she appeared.

"Well the cockpit is essentially destroyed from the crash landing through that building. However I can fly it."

"What are we waiting for then, let's not keep our esteemed friends waiting," Lex said as the Phantom began to rise from the ground heading for Truth's Capital Ship.

Upon nearing the Capital Ship, Aurora reappeared. "Everything is going according to plan; I just gave them the entrance confirmation code along with an emergency repair code. When we arrive there will be a repair crew that will board us, that should allow no other initial resistance besides them."

"Alright we'll be ready for them." Loki replied as Aurora jumped back into her storage unit in his suit. "This is it Lex."

"Yea, let's do it," she replied as the Phantom came to a stop inside the hanger of the Covenant Capital ship.

Waiting in silence for the repair crew to enter the Phantom, they prepared to kill whatever entered only to be stopped by Aurora when a couple Engineers entered, "Don't kill them, trust me they won't report anything besides the progress of the drop ship."

"Alright," Lex said as she sheathed her katana. "Where is the database located?"

"Surprisingly it isn't far from here," Aurora said as a red waypoint reappeared on their HUD about two-hundred feet from their current location. "Bad planning for the Covenant; marking the location with a waypoint."

Heading through the nearest blast door the cautiously headed toward the waypoint; a few blips appeared on their motion trackers. Rounding the corner they came face to face with a group of Elite Honor Guards. Drawing her katana Lex approached the Honor Guards who raised their Energy Staffs in response. Shooting one of them with her shotgun it dropped the Elites shield allowing Loki's knife to fly through the air into its head. Continuing down the long, winding purple corridors they were repeatedly met with resistance. Lone groups of Grunts, Jackals, Elites and even the occasional Hunter duo fell at the unrelenting feet of Lex and Loki. They moved together with a deadly fluid grace that came from years of fighting together along with being a Spartan.

"Um Aurora, what door is it?" Lex asked as they came upon a room that seemed to contain endless amount of doors to other locations on the ship.

"Marking waypoint," Aurora replied before continuing. "Good news is the ship seems to believe that you're after the Prophet of Regret, so resistance in the next room should be minimal."

The large purple door slid open to reveal an empty room with a large system of consoles in the center. Lex stepped forward and sent her hologram into the room only for it to be cut down almost immediately.

"Cloaked Elites, grenades on three," Loki said before motioning with his fingers a countdown from three. Upon hitting zero they both primed a couple frag grenade a tossed them into the room. Once they exploded Lex and Loki stormed into the room shooting at the Elites that had become visible.

"All clear," Lex said as she shot the last Elite with a shotgun.

"Alright, I just need you to walk up to the consoles and I'll do the rest."Aurora said.

Once Loki approached the console Aurora jumped out of his suit and into the Covenant database. "Accessing data…there it is…ok I have found the location of their headquar… what they wouldn't… bad news I'm afraid," Aurora said as she appeared in front of them. "The Prophet has decided to jump into Slipspace while in the middle of New Mombasa. I tried to stop the activation of the Slipspace drive but it was too late."

"So, we're entering Slipspace on his ship," Loki said. "Well fuck."

"Apparently, so we need to figure out a plan here," Lex stated while looking at the consoles.

"My thoughts exactly Two," Aurora replied. "I say that as long as were stuck on here for a while we might as well, in your terms, fuck shit up. I've already taken the liberty of switching off the life support as well as the gravitational generator in the halls leading toward the main hanger."

"Well then, ladies shall we go piss off the Covenant." Loki asked.

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Phoenix Squad
Location: Prophet of Regrets Capital Ship
Time: 1700 Hours, 5:00pm
Mission Status: Deployed
Status: Phoenix One- Healthy
Phoenix Two- Healthy

Walking through the corridors of the Covenant ship was almost an uneventful trip. Using the magnetic plates on the bottom of their boots they pushed their way through the floating bodies of Covenant. Occasionally there would be Grunts flailing wildly in the anti-gravity which had only survived because of their methane tanks. However their survival was quickly ended as a bullet entered their heads.

"This is kind of funny, it's like a mystery," Lex stated laughing slightly. "You know, are there any alive behind this door, no, how about this one, then bam dead. You would think that this was too easy."

Suddenly the floating Covenant corpses around them started to fall to the floor. "Well they finally got the gravity fixed," Loki said as a door opened and they were treated to the sight of a Grunt suffocating to death when his methane tank had emptied.

"Life support in the area I shut down is still offline. I left a little virus in the system that should keep them from turning it back on, at least for a while." Aurora reported as the final door opened and they entered the hanger. "Marking the items ONI wants to sabotage on your HUD's."

Red markers appeared in various locations around the large hanger. Taking the explosives out of the hard case storage on their thighs, Loki and Lex went over to the various items ONI wanted destroyed. A Scarab, fuel caches, and the shield generator that made up the hanger doors all had explosive planted on them awaiting the perfect time to detonate. Looking through the hanger doors Loki noticed they had exited Slipspace, motioning at Lex to follow him he walked over to a Phantom drop ship.

"Aurora, you know what to do."

The Phantom turned on and the gravitational beam activated pulling Loki and Lex into the heart of the ship. Flipping the switch on one of the detonators Lex pushed the bright red button causing the explosives planted on the shield door generator to explode deactivating the shield. Speeding the Phantom out of the hanger towards the UNSC In Amber Clad which had just exited Slipspace Aurora reappeared in front of the two Spartans.

"We're being targeted by his ship; I'm prepared for evasive maneuvers." She said. "Thought I'd let you know."

"Lex, detonate the explosive," Loki ordered and watched as she pushed the button causing the explosives on the fuel caches and the Scarab to explode. The massive chain reaction of the fuel exploding mixed with the Scarab's explosion caused a large amount of destruction to the inside of the hanger as well as lowering the ships shields.

"We're no longer being targeted it appears they're tucking their tails between their legs and running." Aurora reported. "UNSC In Amber Clad, we are friendly transmitting security code, on-board are Commanders Loki and Lex Phoenix. Once again friendly, Commanders Loki and Lex Phoenix, we're requesting permission to board."

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UNSC Personnel
Location: UNSC In Amber Clad
Time: 1730 hours, 5:30pm
Mission Status: Pursuing the Prophet of Regret
Status: 100% Hull Integrity

Having sped into the Slipspace jump made by the Prophet of Regret the UNSC In Amber Clad came to a sudden stop as the Slipspace jump ended.

"Ugh, report," Commander Keyes ordered.

"Both engine cores have spun to zero, we're drifting,"

"Archer Pods are cold; I'll need to reheat the system."

"Do it and find out where we are," Keyes ordered before clicking on a comm channel. "Sorry for the quick jump Sergeant, you in one piece?"

"I'm good," Sgt. Johnson replied as he exhaled the cigar smoke. "Chief?"

"We're fine,"Cortana retorted back.

"Ma'am there's an object coming into view now," a UNSC pilot said.

"Cortana, what exactly am I looking at." Keyes asked.

"That… is another Halo." Cortana replied.

"Say what!" Johnson exclaimed while coughing on the cigar.

"So this is what my father found, I thought Halo was some sort of super weapon."

"It is, if activated this ring will cause destruction on a galactic scale."

"I want all the information you've got on the first Halo; schematics, topography, whatever. I don't care if I have the clearance or not."

Keyes ordered.

"Yes, Ma'am," Cortana replied.

"Where's our target,"

"The enemy ship has stopped above the ring; we're going to pass right over it."

"Perfect, given what we know about this ring it's even more important that we capture the Prophet of Regret. Find out why he came to Earth, why he came here." Keyes stated. "Chief take first Platoon, hard drop, secure a landing zone. Sergeant, load up two flights of Pelicans, follow them in."

"Aye aye ma'am,"Johnson replied getting out of his drop pod.

"Rather than move and fight I'm going to keep a low profile. Once you leave the ship you're on your own." Keyes continued.

"Understood," The Master Chief acknowledged.

"Over the target in five,"

"Hang on to your helmet." Cortana said in reference to herself.

Shooting out of the bottom of In Amber Clad nearly a dozen drop pods fell towards the surface of the Halo ring. As they passed through the atmosphere the friction began to heat up the air around the pods, alerting the Covenant forces below of their presence. Grunts scrambled to get into the Shade turrets and once in began to fire at the drop pods. Upon hitting the ground the Master Chief kicked the door off his pod SMG drawn.

"Could we possibly make any more noise," Cortana asked before the Chief grabbed a rocket launcher from the pod. "I guess so."

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As soon as the Master Chief dropped from the In Amber Clad a technician alerted Commander Keyes of an incoming Phantom.

"Prepare an archer pod to fire on my mark," Keyes ordered. "Three, two, one..ma.."

"UNSC In Amber Clad, we are friendly transmitting security code, on-board are Commanders Loki and Lex Phoenix. Once again friendly, Commanders Loki and Lex Phoenix, we're requesting permission to board."

Sitting up straighter she looked at the monitor showing the inbound Phantom. "Don't fire and isolate that transmission."

"Ma'am the security code checks out, it's tier one ONI,"

"Commanders, might I ask why you're out here in a Covenant Phantom no less? You're a long way from ONI HQ."

"Long story, however per ONI guidelines we are activating the FireSteel Protocol, however we have no wish to take over your operation." Loki said having had his face appear on the monitor therefore showing no armor. "We had our own mission; therefore we will continue this talk onboard and would kindly ask for a completely empty hanger bay to land in."

"Alright, Hanger Bay F is currently empty, you are clear to land."

"Affirmative Commander Keyes," Loki said, the screen going black with a click before the UNSC insignia appeared.

Back on the Phantom Loki turned around as Commander Keyes face disappeared. Pacing around the interior of the ship as he thinking, "What are we supposed to do?"

"I would say take off your armor but we have neither the tools for manual disassembly nor the machine to do it automatically," Aurora replied as she stood there thinking. "I might have a solution that could work. I could try to modify your camo and hologram to create an illusion so to speak. It would show you in Commander Combat uniform."

"Do it," Loki said while Aurora jumped into Lex's hologram software. Pulling up the communications link to Commander Keyes he recorded a message ordering for two hours of privacy.

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Two hours later Loki and Lex walked out of Hanger Bay F and headed towards the bridge of the ship. Upon entering the bridge they were immediately met by Commander Keyes who wanted to know what exactly they were doing out here in a Covenant Phantom.

"We were on a confidential mission and when the Prophet jumped in the city we were sucked into the Slipspace stream," Loki said. "Now, as I said we do not wish to take over this situation in fact we would like to have access, immediately, to any new information you come across. When we see something that we know we can get done better than anyone else we will get to work; until then we shall offer strategic advice."

Commander Keyes stood there for a moment before sighing at the secrecy ONI has and sliding a holopad with the information towards them, "Shall we get started then?"

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Actual Story Words: 3,373

[AN] So this is where my long ass author's notes will appear. I apologize for how long they are, I am trying to cut them down…really I am… however I feel that I should post things to either get more feedback *COUGH* MORE REVIEWS *COUGH.* As well as posting explanations to things I have created in the story. I would like to also mention that I will be including cut scenes from Halo 2 at least every other chapter. I don't own those cut scenes and I'm sure you know where and what they are. Anyway on to the explanations:

FireSteel Protocol: FireSteel Protocol was created by ONI for special occasions when the high-profile, high ranking and/or top secret members of ONI had missions that accidently were in anyway known about by members of the UNSC Military. Whether they found out the mission, the location, or the members during said mission all qualifies for the activation of FireSteel Protocol. The activation of said protocol allows for the ONI members to have absolute secrecy on the penalty of immediate death as well as taking over the UNSC operation, unless it is unnecessary or the member is outranked, which is why only ONI Commanders or above may activate FireSteel Protocol.

Travis Castiel Olivera