Archive:Graeme Devine's Blog/Spirit of Fire/The Mystery of "Spirit of Fire"
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SPIRIT OF FIRE
Did it ever make it home?
THE MYSTERY OF THE "SPIRIT OF FIRE"
On April 21st 2531 the Spirit of Fire was orbiting Arcadia. The official record states that it abruptly left orbit and has never been heard from again. But, three months ago the ship was declared lost with all hands, and to many people, the mystery is far from solved.
The memorial service the UNSC held for the crew was not attended by the wife and daughter of the Captain and they have fought to keep him listed as MIA. The father of the civilian scientist posted to Spirit of Fire insists that a cover up regarding the fate of the Spirit of Fire has hidden the true fate of the ship from the population and that a full public inquiry be held.
The official inquiry report is classified, and efforts to declassify even summary excerpts from the document have been rebuked at the highest level. And while many theories have been suggested as to the fate of the ship, only three of them seem plausible.
Many feel the ship left on a covert operation and was lost in battle. Spirit of Fire was a support vessel, and as such poorly equipped for battle. It has been suggested that such a low profile ship is well suited to covert operations exactly because it has such a low profile Theorists back the covert nature of the Spirit’s mission up with the odd crew reports transmitted after the ships mission to Harvest and the amount of encrypted data transmitted by the ship following that same mission when it entered Arcadia orbit. While we can only guess at the nature of the encrypted data, the records show the ship transmitted roughly ten times the normal amount of traffic while orbiting Arcadia.
Another theory is that the ship never actually left Arcadia and was destroyed in orbit by the enemy destroyer that had previously taken part in the battle that ended with the loss of the ‘Belfast” and “Texas”. This theory is generally discounted because the ship was listed as missing before being officially designated as lost, but experts counter this by pointing out the mass confusion near Arcadia following the attack there.
A third theory, heavily discounted by the families of those onboard Spirit of Fire is that the ship purposely went off the grid and has joined with the rebel independent movement. When confronted with the theory the wife of Captain Cutter, Mary Cutter, assaulted the reporter and had to be physically restrained. The crew reports from Harvest also show no sign of discontent or malice towards UNCOM command.
One final theory, posed by the father of Professor Ellen Anders, the civilian scientist aboard Spirit of Fire, is that the ship is unable to get home or somehow disabled. He claims to have talked to sources inside the Office of Naval Intelligence that a huge upset in the Covenant war plans happened some weeks after Spirit of Fire went missing and that intel reports inside ONI have suggested that the Spirit of Fire may be responsible. While wishful, most discount this theory as too fantastic to have any truth.
The only truth we have in the whole matter is the open frequency transmission the ships AI, “Serina” made in Arcadia orbit. “Don’t wait up.” Experts say that spurious AI transmissions are often fragments of conversations between AI entities that take place across weeks, even months and that they are common and this transmission proves nothing.
This reporter, along with the families and friends of the crew onboard Spirit of Fire, feels the truth is yet to be heard regarding the fate of the ship , and I know for a fact that most still wait up at night awaiting word on their loved ones.