• Published 16th Apr 2012
  • 24,510 Views, 2,280 Comments

Halo: Ponies and Clouded Pasts - Blazer

2022 Rewrite in Progress... The wreckage of Forward Unto Dawn lands in Equestria. Separated from Cortana, John is forced to deal with the consequences.

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Chapter 1: Fall From Dreams

John shouldered a large boy aside, his legs burning as he struggled to climb the hill. Although it wasn’t too steep, it was still a long climb. The summer sun blazing overhead, John squinted, trying to see who was holding the top of the mound. The current “king” of the hill was wrestling with two boys, completely oblivious to John.

Grinning deviously, John flew forward in a burst of energy; ramming straight into the ex-king’s back, giving him a powerful shove into the two boys. They all tumbled down the slope, shouting obscenities and curses through the crowded schoolyard.

Forcing his burning quads to push forward, John surmounted the hill, bellowing a cry of victory. The other children shouted their disapproval, advancing up the hill with renewed vigor.

However, their game was cut short. “John!” Came the voice.

John froze, looking around for the source. And then he spotted them. Standing at the schoolyard entrance were two adults: A man and a woman. The man was a tall, neat gentleman fiddling with a pipe. The woman wore a small summer hat and a pair of eyeglasses. She was also staring straight at him. She had obviously been the source of the voice.

“Yes, you. May we talk?” She asked. Knowing refusal meant a beating, John shrugged, stepping off the mound. A few kids blew raspberries as he passed. They resumed their game, excited now that the best of opponents had left.

John strode up to the two adults, chin held high. He didn’t care if they were going to beat him. Most of the teachers that beat him nowadays were used to the task, and took it as a chore rather than the honorable duty. John failed to see what was honorable about it, though.

The woman glanced back at the hill. “So, John, I see you like to play games.” She said, kneeling down to meet his gaze.

John nodded. “Yeah. I like to win.” He said simply.

The woman laughed, confusing John. “I saw.” She replied, still chuckling. Her hand fell into her pocket, and she withdrew a shiny coin. It was an ordinary coin, from what John could tell.

“How about we play a game of our own?” She asked innocently.

John shrugged. “Sure. I’m just gonna win anyways.” This drew another laugh from the woman.

“Okay, take a look at the coin.” The woman handed him the quarter, which he turned over and over. On one side, there was a man wearing a powdered wig, his silver features chiseled into a frown of sorts. Below his neck, there was a number: 1983. On the other side, there was an eagle, wings outspread. Clutched in its claws was a bundle of arrows, and below that was an olive branch.

“The side with the man’s face is ‘heads’ and the side with the bird is ‘eagle.’” The woman explained. “I’m going to toss the coin into the air, and then you need to catch it. You call out which side you think will appear face-up in your palm. If your answer is correct, you win.”

John’s eyes narrowed. “What do I get when I win?” He asked.

“You get to keep the coin.” The woman said, smiling.

No catches. Might as well go for it. “Okay. Flip it.” John said.

He handed the coin back to her, which she promptly placed on the top of her thumb and flicked it upwards, sending the coin flying into the air with a melodic “ching” of the metal scraping her thumb. John caught it deftly, immediately calling out his winning assumption. "Eagle.” He stated, opening his palm.

The eagle gave him a fierce scowl, as if unhappy that John emerged victorious.

John grinned at the woman. “Told you I’d win.” He teased.

She smiled in return. “You are one lucky kid.” She complimented. Adjusting her eyeglasses, she extended her hand. “My name is Dr. Halsey. It was nice to meet you."

Immediately, the lazy summer’s day faded, the doctor and the tall man disappearing. An explosion sent John sprawling to the ground. Pressing an armored hand to the ground, John struggled to his feet, instinctively drawing his assault rifle. He brought it to bear, quickly scanning the area. A tell-tale whine of incoming artillery filled the air around him.

Instinct taking over, John sprinted towards an overturned Warthog balanced precariously on a bed of rocks. The whine grew louder, filling the speakers in his helmet. Abandoning the weapon, he dove under the safety of the damaged vehicle, covering his head. A blinding flash followed, as well as a powerful shockwave that blew the Warthog off of the crouching Spartan.

Glancing back at the once-operable vehicle, John’s head swiveled back to search for the source of the explosion. His jaw dropped at what he saw.

Standing before him was a grizzled, older-looking Sergeant. He chewed a rapidly disappearing cigar, and wore a cap dyed in the classic green of the space marines. A bushy mustache wriggled as he moved his upper lip. The UNSC insignia was emblazoned on the front of his chestplate.

Sergeant Johnson

“Chief?! What’re you doin’ here?!” Johnson asked, lowering the Jackhammer launcher he was carrying.

John hopped over the rocky outcropping, glad to see a familiar face. “I had better ask you the same thing, Johnson.”

Johnson cocked his head. “What’re you gettin’ at, Chief? You know that’s classified information.” He asked cautiously.

John blinked. “You’re dead. I watched you die on the Ark. Shot through the chest by 343 Guilty Spark. There’s no way you’re alive.” He stated.

Johnson twitched in a strange way, his head tilting at an awkward angle. John raised his eyebrow. “Johnson? Are you—”

A sudden blow from the sergeant sent the Chief crashing back into the rocky outcropping. The sergeant’s right arm exploded, two large tentacles in place of where his hand should have been.

With inhuman speed, the sergeant dashed forward, viciously slamming his left arm into the Chief’s neck. Caught completely off-guard, the Chief dropped his weapon, his hands groping helplessly at the sergeant’s arm.

Johnson’s head lolled to the side, an infection form materializing in his now-open chest cavity.

John flailed and kicked wildly in an attempt to loosen the grip, but to no avail. The ever-tightening grip encroached on his trachea, making every breath a marathon.

A sudden feeling of mercury entering his consciousness made him jump involuntarily. “Chief!” A voice identical to Dr. Halsey’s rang inside the Chief’s helmet.

“C-Cortana…?” He wheezed.

“Chief! You’ve got to wake up!” She cried desperately.

“Wh-what…?” John rasped, still struggling for air.

“The Forward Unto Dawn! She’s being sucked into a planetary gravitational well!” She explained quickly.

“I don’t get—” The Chief started, before his body convulsed in electrocution.
"Chief, you've got to wake up!" Cortana cried desperately.

The Chief didn’t respond, stirring slightly in his cryogenic slumber.

“The Forward Unto Dawn! She’s being sucked into a planetary gravitational well!” She explained quickly.

When the Chief still refused to respond, she groaned mentally. Time for plan B… She flipped a switch, sending a quick jolt to the MJOLNIR’s power supply. The sudden overflow of energy sent a backlash of electricity coursing through the Chief’s body, jolting him awake.

“Agh! What the—!” John cried, kicking the cryo tube’s single door into the opposing wall in surprise.

“Chief, you might want to find somewhere to hunker down. The Forward Unto Dawn is heading straight for the dark side of the planet!” Cortana advised sternly.

Quickly glancing around, John stepped cautiously out of the cryo tube. Struggling to climb the constantly rotating corridor, John managed to claw his way to a large opening in the Titanium-A metal. He risked a glance into space, taking in the sight.

A green planet stretched below, a large ocean visible on its surface. It looked identical to Reach, except all of the familiar continents were in different places. A large sun was setting on the horizon, like a large pat of butter melting onto a hill of pancakes. However, the sun was quickly blotted out by the planet itself, sending John into total darkness, the only light coming from the hull as it began to glow, heating up in the planet’s atmosphere.

A sudden collision bucked John out of the Forward Unto Dawn. Levitating in the frightening weightlessness of freefall, John scrabbled at the shredded titanium, hoping to find some reprieve. A small rod of steel jutting out from the hull was his last chance. Clawing madly towards the rod, he managed to get a decent grip on the edge…

A loud screeching noise of metal on metal ensued, eventually ending with a loud “thunk” as the metal ripped off of the hull entirely as the Dawn began to accelerate towards the surface at an alarming speed.

“Chief!” Cortana cried.

John reached haplessly for the accelerating craft, only to be smacked upside the head with the same rod which had separated from the hull seconds earlier. Seeing stars dance before his eyes, he watched helplessly as the craft flew onwards, embedding itself in a distant desert near the horizon.

His descent, however, continued straight down, aiming towards a thick forest below. A heat cone quickly formed as he accelerated planetside. Reacting quickly, John hit the “armor lock” failsafe. Needles pricked at his arms and legs as the gel layer in his armor rapidly expanded, cutting off circulation in his extremities. He had only seconds to brace himself before smashing into the ground.

Smoothing out the edges of the blanket, Twilight called to Pinkie Pie. “Okay! You can bring out the snacks! The tablecloth is ready!”

A familiar pink pony trotted out, toting a large saddlebag chock-full of hoof-food. Cupcakes, sliced poundcake and assorted fruit tarts clattered haphazardly on their separate plates as they settled onto the tablecloth. “Okie dokie lokie! All done!” Pinkie Pie chimed cheerily.

Rarity set down her small basket of Alfalfa-on-rye sandwiches, wiping her brow. “Oh, goodness. Carrying this basket around has got me worked up! Spike! Could you be a dear and bring me a glass of punch?”

A purple dragon toting a pitcher and paper cups waddled out to meet her. “I don’t know about punch, but Fluttershy gave me a pitcher of water to carry from her cottage.” Spike explained, pouring Rarity a glass before letting her magic take it from his claws.

“Water is perfect, Spikey-wikey!” Rarity exclaimed, nuzzling Spike with her muzzle before taking an elegant sip. Spike rubbed his cheek, blushing furiously. “A-anytime, Rarity…” He said wistfully, wobbling off towards Fluttershy’s cottage.

Twilight sighed with satisfaction. The hot summer day had cooled off after the sun had set, making the temperature perfect for a bit of late-night picnicking. Although Rainbow Dash had yet to bring the punch, Twilight felt that she would have to fly much slower to keep the punch in her container.

Applejack settled on the checkered tablecloth, dropping her load of different apple-intertwined foods before sitting back to gaze at the night sky. "Gosh, Twi. I’m glad you thought of this; it’s warmer than a hamper full of bedsheets out here!” She said.

Twilight smiled. “Well, thanks for agreeing to bring a sampler of your latest apple cuisine!” She replied. “I’ve been waiting to try this new ‘Mountain High Apple Pie’ everypony’s been talking about.”

Applejack grinned. “Big Mac will be bringin’ that over in a jiffy. Let’s jus’ say it lives up to its name.”

A flicker of light caught Twilight’s eye as she turned to look at the farmpony. Distracted, she looked up, her eyes lighting up in surprise.

A beautiful array of starry streaks filled the sky, dazzling the young mares. “Ooh’s” and “Aah’s” accompanied the sudden flurry of activity, although they immediately stopped when a large meteor appeared in the sky alongside the falling debris.

“In Celestia’s name…” Twilight breathed.

They all jumped in fright when a second meteor slammed into the Everfree forest near Fluttershy’s cottage. “Wh-what was that?!” Fluttershy squeaked, peeking out from behind Twilight. The lavender unicorn gritted her teeth.

“Whatever it was, we’ve gotta take a look! C’mon!” Twilight charged into the foliage, dragging a hapless Fluttershy by the tail. The rest of the ponies followed.

Spike emerged from the cottage, toting a plate of carrots. “Hey! Look what I found in…” He trailed off, looking around the empty tablecloth. “Uh… Guys?” He asked hesitantly.