Draco III rebellion
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In 2545, the human colony of Draco III was invaded by the Covenant. The attack resulted in the massacre of most Draconians when the planet's residents were rounded up and slaughtered by starving Kig-Yar and Unggoy soldiers. In response, SPARTAN-IIs were sent to the planet and wiped out all Covenant forces.
Since Draco III was used as a hunting ground by the Covenant, the planet was not completely glassed. After the Human-Covenant War ended in 2552, some humans attempted to resettle on Draco III with the Unified Earth Government's permission. With no military force on the planet and only a small population of colonists, the United Rebel Front attempted to declare Draco III's independence from the UEG.
The United Rebel Front took control of Draco III's capitol building located in New Albany, Lombard and barricaded themselves inside of the building. URF Captain Ingridson took command of the uprising from inside the capitol building. A majority of Draco III's new colonists were not pleased with the URF's violent attempt at seceding from the UEG. The UNSC's Office of Naval Intelligence recognized that Draco III held strategic importance to the Unified Earth Government's mission to reclaim the colonies that were lost during the Covenant War. In response, ONI Captain Veronica Dare sent in Orbital Drop Shock Trooper squad Alpha-Nine, led by Gunnery Sergeant Edward Buck, to retake the capitol building and eliminate Ingridson. The capitol building was the best-built structure on the planet, and was impermeable to most ordnance. Regardless, ONI ordered the ODSTs to leave New Albany as intact as possible, to prevent the URF from using the destruction of a city as propaganda against the UEG. When Alpha-Nine—consisting of Buck, Taylor "Dutch" Miles, Kojo "Romeo" Agu, Michael "Mickey" Crespo, and Jonathan Doherty—entered the capitol building, they made their way to its legislature chamber. After using explosives to blast their way through, the squad's entrance was promptly closed by the insurgents as they passed through. Buck sent the Rookie to enter an emergency door, but he was captured and shot in the shoulder by the URF soldiers. They dragged him up to the presidential balcony, which was protected by energy shielding. Ingridson, holding her pistol to the Rookie's head, threatened to execute him if the ODSTs did not surrender. Buck signaled for Dutch and Mickey to sneak up to the balcony, while he and Romeo distracted her. As a stand-off ensued, Spartan Sarah Palmer offered Buck some assistance.
Buck did not want Ingridson to execute the Rookie upon seeing the SPARTAN-IVs, so he declined Palmer's aid. Ingridson shot the Rookie in the knee when the ODSTs proved to be uncooperative. Buck relented and presented himself to the rebel captain, dropping his pistol on the ground; Buck had Romeo do the same. Buck and Ingridson engaged in a conversation about each others' views, with both individuals attempting to stall the other to allow their respective forces get in position. While Palmer and her Spartans engaged the insurgents outside the building, Dutch and Mickey got into position and Buck ordered the squad to attack the rebels. In the ensuring firefight, Mickey held the rebels at gunpoint and ordered them to surrender. Ingridson shot the Rookie in the head in an act of desperation. In retaliation, Dutch killed a rebel and Ingridson with his shotgun, while the remaining insurgent surrendered. Seconds later, having eliminated the URF soldiers outside the building, Palmer and her Spartans met up with the survivors of Alpha-Nine inside the capitol building.
After the rebellion was quelled, Alpha-Nine had a funeral for the Rookie. Taking his coffin aboard a D96-TCE Albatross, the squad flew out to sea on Draco III and dropped the Rookie's casket into the water. The Rookie's death greatly affected Dutch and he decided to retire from military service to be with his wife. Buck traveled to Karnak to visit his hometown. He was visited by Jun-A266, who commended him for his success at New Albany. Jun offered Buck and his squad a place in the second class of the SPARTAN-IV program and, upon revealing that the Rookie would have received an offer as well, Buck accepted.
Mickey was affected by watching the Rookie die in front of him and blamed himself for the Rookie's death, as he thought that his hesitation to kill Ingridson prevented the Rookie's survival. Mickey became disillusioned with the UNSC and UEG, angered that he was tasked with killing fellow humans instead of the former Covenant species. After becoming a Spartan, Mickey would later join the United Rebel Front.
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