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Petty Officer, First Class Kelly-087, born Kelly Shaddock, is a SPARTAN-II supersoldier of the UNSC Naval Special Warfare Command. She is renowned for her incredible speed, even without her MJOLNIR armor. As of 2558, she is one of the few active Spartan-IIs. She had participated in 201 operations—124 of which were full campaigns—as of August 2558, more than any other Spartan with the exception of her closest friend, John-117. Her most prominent assignment is with Blue Team, in which she continues to serve as a general combat operator as of 2558.
Kelly Shaddock was born on the Inner Colony world of Imber on September 21, 2511. She was conscripted into the SPARTAN-II program at age six in 2517 when she was singled out as a physically and intellectually superior child by Doctor Catherine Halsey. During her abduction she eluded Retrieval team Gamma for six hours but eventually came forward when she thought the abduction was a game for her birthday. Her near-escape resulted in the implementation of new retrieval protocols to avoid further mistakes. After her abduction she was replaced with a flash clone. She was then sent to the FLEETCOM Military Complex at Reach to begin her training.
Under the guidance of Chief Petty Officer Franklin Mendez and Déjà, the Spartans began their SPARTAN-II training. On her first day of training, Kelly was teamed up with John-117 and Samuel-034 during a drill at Military Reservation 01478-B. Although John-117 was the first to complete an activity, their team did poorly, because of the lack of teamwork, and finished in last place. They were not allowed to eat that night. The next day Kelly showed her true speed by running for a pulley lift, which she reached twice as quickly as John and Sam. They did not come first, but they did come in third. This was just the first of many times that her speed would be a key factor in strategies. The exercise led to the formation of a camaraderie between the three Spartan trainees and they became good friends. When the Spartans' heads were being shaved for the first time, Kelly disarmed the Master Sergeant barber of his clippers, requiring three aides to force her down and shave her head.
Kelly later trained with her fellow Spartans at the Military Wilderness Training Preserve, with each Spartan being dropped off at a different point in the preserve. The Spartans regrouped and made their way to the extraction point. There, they were almost forced to kill a squad of UNSC Marines. However, Kelly worked together with John, Sam, Fhajad-084, and Linda-058 to defeat the Marines—using her speed to distract the Marines. All the Spartans managed to reach the Marines' D96-TCE Albatross and then they commandeered the dropship to leave the preserve. Kelly participated in numerous training missions with the Spartans from 2517 to 2525, including those in Emerald Cove, Chiron Test Station, and the Military Wilderness Training Preserve in the Highland Mountains. By July 14, 2523, Kelly and the Spartans had begun facing the formidable Tango Company in simulated war games.
After her Spartan augmentation procedures at an ONI medical facility, Kelly was close to death. She was the slowest to recover from the operations, and many of her fellow Spartans were afraid that she would not make it. She did, and her already amazing speed was even further augmented. John-117 noted that she was "...almost untouchable, no one could touch her if she didn't want them to."
Kelly participated in Operation: TALON, the Spartans' first mission to Eridanus Secundus in the Eridanus system. She, along with John, Frederic-104, Sam and Linda, boarded the Laden and infiltrated the rebel asteroid base. They then captured Colonel Robert Watts, a leader of the United Rebel Front. After the First Battle of Harvest, Kelly later attended the UNSC briefing by Admiral Michael Stanforth and the AI Beowulf about the emerging Covenant threat. The training of Kelly, and the rest of the SPARTAN-IIs, was accelerated and the Spartans were sent to Chi Ceti IV to receive their new MJOLNIR Powered Assault Armor from Damascus Testing Facility to aid them in combat against the Covenant. While in orbit over the planet, a Covenant ship appeared in the system and attacked the frigate the Spartans were aboard, UNSC Commonwealth. The Spartans were eventually able to retrieve the MJOLNIR armor and then left to return to the Commonwealth in a Pelican. However, Unrelenting returned to the battle and began to engage the Commonwealth, severely damaging it. Taking the Pelican's ANVIL-II AS missiles, all the Spartans used thruster packs to direct themselves into a hull breach in Unrelenting, however only Kelly, Sam, and John made it inside. Inside the ship, they engaged Kig-Yar soldiers, one of which created a breach in Sam's armor. Unable to return to the vacuum of space, Kelly and John reluctantly left Sam behind so he could detonate the missiles and destroy the ship. After the battle, Kelly was assigned to Blue Team.
Alpha Corvi II
In March 2526, Kelly and the rest of Blue Team, along with Gold Team and Green Team, were stationed aboard the Razor-class prowler UNSC Starry Night over the planet Netherop as part of a mission with the goal of capturing an intact Covenant vessel for ONI's Beta-3 Division to examine and hopefully reverse-engineer technology from. Using some patrolling Type-27 Banshees as cover, the three Spartan teams went EVA and managed to board the Radiant Arrow, a Covenant frigate. Once inside the frigate's hangar, the Spartans quickly eliminated the present crew and moved deeper into the vessel. Blue Team led the stealthy assault, clearing rooms along the ship's primary corridor. While still in the process of looking for the bridge, one of the sensor operators aboard one of the prowlers "accidentally" broadcast a transmission on the Spartans' SQUADCOM. This immediately made their presence known to the rest of the Covenant aboard the frigate. Unbekownst to the Spartans, the transmission was actually intentional; the apparent mistake was part of an insurrectionist plot devised by Hector Nyeto to get the Spartans killed. With their cover blown, Blue Team rushed deeper into the ship, looking for the bridge. The fight soon took them to a gravity lift tube where they were attacked by Sangheili warriors wielding carbines and plasma grenades. Attempting to keep the Spartans from reaching the bridge, the direction of the lift was reversed, pulling Kelly, Fred, and Linda rapidly downward. John managed to grab a maintenance ladder. At the bottom of the lift, Kelly, Fred, and Linda laid in a pile. Their armors had locked up during the fall to protect them from injury. However, the combined mass of Fred and Linda had landed on top of Kelly, and she received a dangerous compound rib facture as a result. John ordered them to extract Kelly and rendezvous with Green Team while he secured the bridge. Kelly objected, saying that she didn't need a babysitter. When John found that the frigate's shipmaster had prepared the Radiant Arrow to self-destruct, he ordered Kelly and the rest of the Spartans off the vessel. They all made it clear just before it detonated.
After the failed attempt at capturing the Radiant Arrow, Blue, Gold, and Green Teams were selected to participate in an operation with the intent to thin the Covenant navy through similar boarding tactics. For this mission, the Spartans would be attached to Task Force Yama and deployed alongside the ODSTs of the 21st Space Assault Battalion, also known as the "Black Daggers." Because of its proximity to the front, an ice quarry on Biko's third moon, Seoba, was selected as the staging ground for this operation.
During the voyage through slipspace, Kelly and the others trained with the ODSTs in the UNSC Vanishing Point's mission preparation hold. The Spartans made short work of the veteran marines in each exercise until Staff Sergeant Avery Johnson taught them some unorthodox strategies that proved to be much more effective against the supersoldiers. After four days of training, Colonel Marmon Crowther had them all gather in the ship's drop hangar to be briefed on the specifics of the operation. Despite their exemplary performance against his ODSTs, Crowther was still skeptical about deploying the Spartans to the front lines due to their inexperience on the battlefield, as well as their apparent young age, much to their frustration.
When the task force arrived in-system on March 18, it was discovered that insurrectionist forces were occupying the quarry. As such, the UNSC would need to uproot them before the Covenant inevitably arrived. Kelly and the rest of Blue Team followed John as he disobeyed orders and leapt from the troop bay of the UNSC Ghost Song while under fire. During the insertion, one of the prowlers managed to damage the insurrectionist base's communications relay, severing its connection with potential reinforcements. However, the rest of Ghost Flight was forced to withdraw when the UNSC Ghost Star was shot down. The Spartans regrouped in the quarry's abandoned docks to discuss how they would destroy the Civet convoy travelling up the side of the quarry to fix the relay. With approval from Captain Zelos Cuvier and Lieutenant Nelly Hamm, they came up with a plan to travel up the accelerator tube of a mass driver rising five kilometers up and out of the quarry, using thruster packs to outpace the convoy. As the tube was mostly full of ice, Fred expressed doubt that they would be able to advance quickly enough without a larger flamethrower and more time. He also suggested the possibility that Blue Team was being used as a diversion to allow Hamm and her troopers to eliminate the convoy themselves. Nevertheless, they went forward with the plan, with Linda staying back to cover them with her MA5B assault rifle and to watch for any hint that the insurrectionists had discovered what they were doing. John led the way, with Fred and then Kelly trailing behind. Linda informed them that the vibrations of them bumping into the tube was launching ice crystals into the sky. Despite the ongoing firefight with the Black Daggers, the insurgents soon discovered the Spartans' plan and began sweeping a portion of the tube ahead of them with an M41 Vulcan. To distract the gunner, John and Fred rigged their thermite-carbon cord and I-JeT to explode as they moved past the Vulcan fire. Linda began slowly working her way up up the quarry, quietly eliminating insurgents as she went. Shortly thereafter, Blue Team discovered that Fred was right and that Hamm's men had intercepted the convoy via a prowler drop while the enemy was distracted by the Spartans. The ODSTs had also planted explosives on the communications relay by the time Blue Team exited the tube. John expressed his team's misgivings to Hamm about being lied to and used as bait, but she dismissed him, saying that this was what happens when he disobeys orders.
The next day, Captain Halima Ascot, commander of Task Force Yama and captain of the Starry Night, held a meeting to discuss the events of the previous day's battle. John was reprimanded for his maverick actions at the start of the battle, and his Spartans' experience was called into question once more. Due to some of Nyeto's sly comments, the truth about their young ages was revealed to the few personnel present at the meeting. Learning this disturbing fact, Colonel Crowther refused to send the Spartans into battle again, instead ordering them to guard the insurrectionists captured during the fighting and prepare them to be sent to Biko to be processed. While this meeting was being held, a Covenant flotilla was detected as it arrived in-system and began heading for Seoba.
As the rest of Task Force Yama mobilized to meet the alien vessels, Kelly and the other Spartans were sent to Subsurface Maintenance Grotto 6M430 where they would direct the captured insurgents onto a transport. While the line of roughly 300 prisoners marched onto the vessel, John noticed that a group of them were hiding the presence of an officer, General Harper Garvin of the United Rebel Front. He ordered the officer to step forward, but another rebel presented herself instead, trying to stall for Garvin by flirting with John. Over SQUADCOM, Kelly informed him that the woman was not actually flirting with him, but that it was meant as a diversion. However, John had already realized this and come up with a new plan. To show that he meant business, John grabbed the woman by her tunic lapels and threatened her with summary execution for interfering with a guard while on the field of combat, as per the UNSC Military Code of Conduct. John's plan worked and General Garvin presented himself. He began trying to pry information out of John, but this effort was interrupted when a situation with Captain Ascot's flagship was relayed over the task force's command channel. The Starry Night had been shot down on takeoff, crash-landing back into the quarry. Crowther was unable to send a unit of his Black Daggers to search for survivors without putting more prowlers at risk. Since they were the only unit available to assist, John decided that he and his Spartans would go for the Starry Night once the transport was loaded. After sending Garvin back to his people and ordering the transport pilot to launch, John had his Spartans move out, much to the concern of Joshua-029 and Kurt-051. Not only would they be disobeying a direct order from Crowther, operating without the support of the task force in such a situation would be very risky. Kelly reminded John that even if they managed to save some of the Starry Night's crew, they would still need a ride off of Seoba.
Kelly and the others proceeded to the grotto's access vestibule and entered its airlock, sealing the inner hatch. With that, they stepped out into the dense sublimation fog enshrouding the floor of the ice quarry. Visibility was so poor that each of the Spartans could barely even see the ends of their rifles, but the flashes of plasma bolts could be seen dancing through the clouds above. John accessed the command channel and requested that he and his teammates receive a waypoint leading to the downed prowler. Colonel Crowther responded by asking what he thought he was doing. John stated that they were checking on the status of the Starry Night as they were the only unit that could do so at the moment, carefully choosing his words so that Crowther could deflect blame onto the Spartan if need be. This would make it more likely for Crowther to not stand in the way of their self-assigned mission. While John waited for a response, he signaled Joshua and Kurt to spread out their teams in a hundred-meter-wide search line. Green Team spaced out on the left of the more tightly-gathered Blue Team, and Gold Team spaced out on the right. By doing this, the Spartans would be more likely to find any debris from the Starry Night that might have otherwise been missed in the fog. Kelly pointed out that Nyeto had said the prowler went down intact, but John was not convinced that it stayed that way once the vessel dropped into the quarry. John also ordered them to advance at a trotting speed, leading them away from the dockyards where they had engaged insurgents the day before. When Crowther still had not responded, John added over the command channel that they would take a look at the crash site and report their findings.
Finally, Crowther replied and acknowledged John's plan, but ordered him to not take action unless immediately warranted. He also informed the Spartans of Biko's naval response to the alien bombardment of Seoba and that Nyeto believed that the small Covenant flotilla would either be in full retreat or destroyed within the hour by the approaching overwhelming force. An inexact waypoint was placed on each of the Spartans' HUDs, and John had them adjust course to match the new trajectory. At this point, Kelly and the rest of Blue Team were arrayed in a diamond formation with only five meters between them, with only their motion trackers revealing the locations of their teammates. John ordered them all to advance at a full run while keeping their eyes on their feet, since that was all they could see anyway. As they ran, the Emmeline departed the grotto and flew over the Spartans, churning up the fog and allowing a brief moment of visibility. Through the haze, they could see five Covenant vessels fire towards the transport as it crested the horizon.
Nearing the provided waypoint, the fog had lowered to shoulder-height, allowing the Spartans to discover that the Starry Night was largely intact, but sat atop a large avalanche about seven hundred meters up the quarry wall. Fred spotted a Covenant intrusion corvette sliding over the rim of the quarry and descending over the prowler. Kelly theorized that they may be trying to recover the Starry Night themselves. Realizing the danger, John declared to his teammates that the mission was no longer a rescue mission. Their primary objective was now to deny the Covenant from recovering the prowler and the data stored within. Then, John opened the command channel again and relayed this information to Crowther, who echoed John's concerns and insisted that they could not let the Covenant take possession of the Starry Night. The vessel's navigation computer and other onboard data devices could reveal the locations of UNSC outposts, entire force deployments, or worse. Crowther asked Nyeto if there was any way that the prowler's nuclear self-destruct system could be remotely activated, to which the lieutenant commander responded in the affirmative. However, there were only three positions that had access to that ability. The first two were the flight commander and wing commander, both of which were roles held by Captain Ascot, who was either dead or unable to be reached aboard the Starry Night. The final person with the ability to remotely detonate the prowler was the captain of the Vanishing Point, which was holding station two planetary orbits out from Seoba. At that distance, it would take nearly an hour for the request to be sent to the cruiser and for the return signal to arrive. By then, the Covenant might already have retrieved sensitive data from the wrecked prowler. Crowther began to reluctantly order the Spartans to prevent the Starry Night's capture, but John cut him off, assuring him that they would not fail. The Spartan requested that Task Force Yama assist them by keeping the assaulting corvettes off their backs. Nyeto began to say that their prowlers were not designed for ship-to-ship combat when Crowther interrupted him, promising that they would find a way. Crowther started to tell John to standby for instructions on how to manually activate the prowler's self-destruct, but he reassured the colonel that his Spartans already knew how to activate a Fury nuke.
Just then, a Ghost appeared on John's motion tracker, firing at him through the fog. Once it showed itself, he killed its Jiralhanae driver with his MA5B's underbarrel grenade launcher. Shortly after that was handled, more Ghosts entered the quarry, so John ordered Green and Gold Teams to deal with them as Blue Team followed him. At this point, the looming intrusion corvette had begun deploying EVA-equipped Sangheili, Jiralhanae, and Kig-Yar warriors via gravity lift, with the first already looking for a way inside the ship. Another corvette crested the edge of the quarry, firing its main cannon on the Spartans. Grace-093 took a hit, and John requested an ETA on Nyeto's support. The lieutenant commander told him not to worry, as it was nearly set up. However, John realized it would be too late for that and he ordered Blue Team to simultaneously fire on the avalanche just below the Starry Night with their grenade launchers to cause the vessel to fall to quarry floor and prevent the Covenant from gaining entrance. Despite Kelly and Fred's uneasiness, all members of the team acknowledged and followed his order. As they feared, the volley of grenades worked a bit too well, bringing the avalanche down on top of the Spartans, but successfully delaying the Covenant in their boarding attempt.
Six of the twelve Spartans were buried under the flow of ice, including Kelly and John. As he and the others worked on freeing themselves, John gave Fred operational command, ordering him to board and destroy the Starry Night. Fred, Linda, and Malcolm-059 prepared to enter the prowler while John once again accessed the command channel, demanding that Nyeto's support arrive immediately. The other mobile Spartans of Gold and Green Teams fended off seemingly endless waves of Covenant ground vehicles, and Nyeto's support finally arrived in the form of prowler strafing runs that destroyed two nearby intrusion corvettes. Meanwhile, Fred's team had boarded the Starry Night, secured a handful of survivors, and began manually arming the vessel's Fury tactical nuclear weapon. At this point, John had freed himself from the avalanche, informing the others of approaching Covenant boarders and that the looming intrusion corvette was preparing to recover the prowler via its gravity lift. After dealing with the boarders, Linda began the nuke's thirty-second countdown sequence. The three-Spartan team and the survivors boarded the Starry Night's escape pod and launched, soaring through Seoba's low gravity and out of the blast radius. By the time John warned the other Spartans about the nuke, Kelly had already extricated herself from the ice. She, along with the rest of the Spartans, made it away safely before the explosion, which consumed both the Starry Night and the intrusion corvette. Colonel Crowther had some prowlers land and retrieve them after the electromagnetic pulse had cleared. Some of the Spartans also assisted in the recovery of a Covenant starholo from the corvette's wreckage. They and the starholo were then transported back to the Vanishing Point.
On March 20, John-117 and five other Spartans who were not confined to the infirmary attended a funeral service for the two-hundred-and-three men and women who lost their lives at Seoba. Held in the command hangar of the Vanishing Point as it sat in a high parabolic orbit around Biko, the ceremony included an honor company of a hundred-and-one enlisted personnel in their dress blues, including the six Spartans and Avery Johnson. After the service, Lieutenant Commander Nyeto—the de facto commander of Task Force Yama after Ascot's death—approached John, who asked if he'd reconsider sidelining them. Nyeto promised that the Spartans would be seeing all the action they could handle for the rest of the operation. However, Crowther again contested this on the basis of them being too young, forcing the lieutenant commander to back down by threatening him with a report to a UNSC board of inquiry. The Black Daggers would board the incoming fleet alone. As everyone left the hangar in shocked silence, Crowther revealed to Johnson that he did not trust Nyeto. He believed that the Spartans were combat-ready, and he was instead sending them on a mission to disrupt Covenant supply lines at Etalan.
In April 2526, the Spartans were deployed to Circinius IV to combat a Covenant invasion. During the battle, they received a distress signal from a cadet squad pinned down at Corbulo Academy of Military Science. Kelly was given command of Blue Team while John went to rescue the cadets. John later radioed Kelly, telling her to inform Command that he had four survivors. He then told her to take her team north for Pelican extraction and that he would rendezvous soon. Soon after, Kelly met with John and the three surviving cadets at the extraction point and they successfully evacuated on the Pelican. During the flight, Kelly and Fred removed their helmets. When Cadet Sullivan asked how old they were, Kelly and Fred exchanged glances and responded simply, "That's classified."
The war continues
By 2531, Blue Team had repeatedly disrupted the operations of the United Rebel Front, including at Station Jefferson, on board the destroyer Origami, in Micronesia, and at a high-explosives manufacturing facility at an unspecified location. On May 1, 2531, Blue Team, then consisting of Kelly, Linda, Fred, John, and Kurt-051, had infiltrated a URF military base on Victoria, Camp New Hope. However, the Insurrectionists successfully ambushed Kelly, Linda, Fred, and John using an antigravity plate which disabled the Spartans. Before the rebels could interrogate the Spartans, Kurt freed Blue Team using an M12 Warthog and Asteroidea anti-personnel mines. However, the rescue resulted in the death of the high-ranking rebel leader General Howard Graves.
In 2535, Kelly was present at the Battle of Jericho VII. She was designated as Blue-Two on John's Blue Team during a mission to distract the Covenant while Red Team would plant a HAVOK tactical nuclear weapon to destroy a Covenant landing zone. However, after three days of hard fighting, they were forced to retreat as the planet was glassed.
In Operation: PALE SHADOW on Eirene, Kelly triggered a reactor breach that led to a 50 megaton blast towards a Covenant forward operating base, single-handedly saving the city of New Kona. Later, in 2544, Kelly also participated in an ONI-led operation, codenamed Operation: WARM BLANKET, which required a team of Spartans (consisting of Solomon-069, Arthur-079, Frederic-104, John-117 and herself) to assault a Covenant fleet using Booster Frames to recover Dr. Catherine Halsey. The Covenant fleet was temporarily unable to enable their slipspace drive due to a stellar magnetic field, providing the Spartans some time to retrieve the package before the Covenant fleet departed. During the course of the operation, Arthur-079 and Solomon-069 were killed by the Covenant. The surviving Spartans then infiltrated the Covenant flagship and got separated as they made their way to Halsey. The operation was successful with the Spartans escorting her back to the ONI stealth ship that deployed them.
In Operation: DEVIL FREEDOM, she assisted the evacuation of civilians and targeting of Covenant landing craft for orbital bombardment on Imber. In Operation: HEMORRHAGE, Kelly was secretly sent into a Covenant fleet to infiltrate an important capital ship—Doctrine's Command. Upon entering the ship, she set it on a collision course for other ships in the fleet, and destroyed half of the fleet in the process. In 2552, Kelly was sent to Sigma Octanus IV as part of Operation: OCEAN BREAKER. She was designated as Blue-Two, part of John's team, and carried a HAVOK tactical nuclear weapon to the Covenant-held city of Côte d'Azur. Successful, her team boarded a Pelican, docked with the UNSC Leviathan and returned to Reach.
She was briefly aboard the UNSC Pillar of Autumn in preparation for Operation: RED FLAG; the Spartans' mission to capture a Covenant Prophet. Unfortunately, as the Autumn was preparing to leave, they were recalled to defend Reach as a massive Covenant fleet entered the system. Designated as Red-Two, Kelly was assigned to Fred's team, with the mission to defend the generators for the orbital MAC guns. As their Pelican, Bravo 001, descended to the surface of Reach, it was shot down by Seraphs. The Spartans were then forced to jump from the crashing Pelican, which led to several Spartans being killed and more injured on impact. Kelly was apparently injured in this fall though she made no indication of it.
They eventually rallied at ODG Facility A-331. After receiving a message from Vice Admiral Danforth Whitcomb, Fred assigned Kelly to Team Alpha, along with himself and Joshua-029. They piloted Banshee fliers to a Covenant landing zone where she threw a Fury tactical nuclear weapon into the gravity lift of a Covenant cruiser. Though they successfully destroyed the landing zone, Joshua was shot down and later marked as MIA.
She and Fred were then forced to retreat back to Team Delta's position after it appeared that all the Spartans of Team Beta were killed at the ODG Facility. They were then forced to land, contend with a pair of Hunters, and commandeer Wraith tanks in order to get to CASTLE Base where Team Delta was hidden. They met up with Vinh-030, Isaac-039, and William-043. The five Spartans were unable to enter the facility until Kelly thought to whisper Oly Oly Oxen Free into the speaker, which opened the door, and it turned out that Dr. Halsey was still in the facility.
Kelly's injuries turned out to be life-threatening; she had a fever and low blood pressure due to moderate bleeding in her liver, and one of her lungs had completely collapsed. Dr. Halsey noted that it was amazing Kelly was still alive, let alone still fighting, despite these two potentially fatal conditions.
The Covenant attacked immediately and Dr. Halsey was forced to activate Operation: WHITE GLOVE. In addition, she gave the Spartans new MJOLNIR parts which were being field-tested, but had not yet been certified. Kelly received an improvement to her neural induction circuits, giving her twitch response time and a speed boost. The Spartans were then trapped beneath the base for several days until Fred came across the entrance to a Forerunner installation. After exploring the vast complex for some time, the five Spartans and Dr. Halsey discovered a Forerunner crystal at the center of a vast chamber.
The crystal sent a spike of radiation that allowed the Covenant to triangulate on the Spartans' position. The Covenant breached the underground complex, and used a gravity lift to send massive amounts of ground forces inside. The group was forced to retreat, but Vinh and Isaac disappeared after their satchel charges exploded. Kelly, Fred, Will and Dr. Halsey were then trapped in a cavern for several days until they were rescued by John-117, Anton-044, and Admiral Whitcomb. During the operation though, Kelly was hit by the assault cannons of two Hunters as she tried to protect Dr. Halsey. Once again, she was critically wounded. With burns on seventy two percent of her body, she required dermacortic steroids to recover.
Kelly was whisked aboard a Spirit and taken to the captured Ascendant Justice/Gettysburg. Some time after she was healed, Halsey sedated her and had Corporal Locklear carry her aboard the Beatrice; a retired stealth ship and the private vessel of the rebel Governor Jacob Jiles, without anyone's knowledge or permission. The Beatrice then entered slipspace, heading for Onyx.
On November 3, Halsey and Kelly eventually made it to Onyx, where the Beatrice immediately came under attack by Onyx Sentinels. Kelly awoke from her sedation only moments before, and was forced to land the ship safely as Halsey passed out due to extreme acceleration caused by their entry maneuver. On the surface, Kelly and Halsey soon reunited with SCPO Mendez and some of the remaining SPARTAN-II and SPARTAN-III soldiers. Soon after, Kelly, as the fastest Spartan, served as bait for the Onyx Sentinels and with coordinated teamwork, they managed to destroy several of them.
After the arrival of William-043, Linda-058, and Frederic-104, the humans used a Covenant dropship to enter a vast, excavated Forerunner city within Zone 67, and located Onyx's map room. They then destroyed a massive Sentinel manufacturing facility under orders of AI Endless Summer. After recovering Team Katana, whose members were in slipspace field pods, they teleported to Onyx's core room, soon followed by a Covenant army under the command of Fleet Master Voro Nar 'Mantakree.
The Spartans then held off the Covenant forces at a slipspace portal in the center of the core room. When Kelly killed a group of Elites in close quarters in an attempt to buy them more time, a Hunter pair took her by surprise, and Holly-G003 sacrificed her life to save her, soon followed by Will. Kurt then ordered Kelly, along with Dr. Halsey, Fred, Linda, and the rest of the surviving Spartan-IIIs, to enter the slipspace rift, while he stayed behind and detonated two FENRIS nuclear warheads to stop the massive Covenant army.
Shield world and recovery
Having passed through the slipspace rift, Kelly and the rest of the human survivors found themselves trapped in a massive Dyson sphere contained within a slipspace bubble of compressed space-time, formerly hidden inside the core of Onyx. She and the others then began trying to find a way to revive Team Katana to find a way out of the shield world.
After the survivors had explored the sphere for several days—over three months in normal space-time—they discovered a group of Huragok which helped them establish contact with the ONI ships outside the sphere and eventually bring the sphere back into normal space in February 2553. They were then recovered by the ONI team Kilo-Five and taken to a debriefing in HIGHCOM Facility Bravo-6 aboard the UNSC Port Stanley. Kelly, along with some of the other surviving Spartan-IIs, was present at the Voi Memorial ceremony on March 3, 2553.
Conflict on Gao
In May 2553, the Office of Naval Intelligence learned of a Forerunner structure host to an ancilla located within the Montero Cave System on the human Outer Colony of Gao in the Cordoba system. Kelly and the rest of Blue Team—Fred, Linda, Tom-B292, Lucy-B091, Ash-G099, Olivia-G291, and Mark-G313—were attached to ONI's 717th Xeno-Materials Exploitation Battalion, a research battalion charged with recovering the AI. Meanwhile, a string of murders had been occurring in the cave systems; the UNSC forces on Gao agreed to help the Ministry of Protection with the murders while they covertly located the AI, both parties unaware that the murders were caused by the ancilla.
After another victim had been discovered in the caves, Kelly led a splinter team consisting of herself, Tom, Lucy, and Linda, tasked with escorting the GMoP team and the bagged victim back to the village of Wendosa, while the rest of Blue Team continued to search for the ancilla. Upon arriving at Wendosa on July 4, 2553, the Spartans attempted to deliver the victim to a Pelican dropship for extraction. However, the four Spartans were spotted by members of the Keepers of the One Freedom, a radical Covenant sect that had traveled to Gao in search for the ancilla. The cult's Jiralhanae leader, Castor, believed that the bagged victim aboard the Pelican was actually the ancilla and ordered his forces to attack Wendosa to retrieve the AI. As the Keepers of the One Freedom attacked the village, Kelly and the other Spartans helped Charlie Company defend the rest of the research battalion. While the company took a defensive position in Hotel Wendosa, Kelly and the Spartans formed a skirmish ring around the hotel, attempting to disrupt enemy formations and prevent a Jiralhanae charge.
Fred, the rest of Blue Team, and Special Inspector Veta Lopis arrived at the village with the captured ancilla to aid the company. Kelly and Linda fired explosives at the Keepers from the Wendosa rooftops. When the Jiralhanae attempted to charge at the village, all Spartans of Blue Team worked together to thin their numbers. During the attack, Fred was ordered to return the captured ancilla to Commander Murtag Nelson at the Montero Vitality Clinic. However, while leaving Wendosa in a Falcon, the aircraft was shot down by Keeper fire. The rest of Blue Team regrouped and, with Lopis, traveled to the Falcon's crash site to locate Fred and the AI. The team was assaulted by the Keepers, but they were eventually able to defeat the charging Jiralhanae with the help of the battalion's Alpha Company. Having recovered Fred and the ancilla, the team returned to the Montero Vitality Clinic. However, recently elected President of Gao Arlo Casille declared war on the UNSC forces on the planet and Gao battle-jumpers and Wyverns were ordered to engage the battalion's remaining forces.
As the rest of the unit began retreating from the planet, the Spartans and Lopis traveled to the Well of Echoes to detonate a HAVOK tactical nuclear weapon inside to destroy the Forerunner installation within the Montero Caves, denying the anti-UNSC president access to the installation. Once they retrieved the ancilla and the nuke, Blue Team and Lopis regrouped in the Montero Jungle and headed for the Well of Echoes. Upon arriving at the Well of Echoes, the team boarded a nearby ONI Owl dropship with Rear Admiral Serin Osman aboard. Mark-G313 dropped the nuke into the Well of Echoes and the Owl left the planet as the HAVOK detonated and destroyed the Forerunner installation.
In the years following the war, Kelly, Fred and Linda continued to serve under Naval Special Warfare on numerous highly confidential missions under ONI's direct oversight, deploying to the outer fringes of human-controlled space to eliminate hostile Covenant remnants. One of these missions undertaken by Kelly was codenamed Operation: COUGAR REDEMPTION.
On July 26, 2557, Kelly and the rest of Blue Team reunited with John-117 for a mission to investigate the recent loss of contact with a science team and their SPARTAN-II escort, Black Team, on Installation 03. Soon after their arrival Linda found tracks left by a Crawler. Fred and Linda found the dead bodies of Team Black while John and Kelly found the scientists. Shortly after they left the camp they were attacked by Promethean Knights, but managed to fend them off. They continued following the Crawlers' tracks and came to where the Composer was originally located. Kelly found a tunnel which they followed down, soon finding the Composer's Abyss.
Traveling through a slipspace portal at the end of the Abyss, Kelly and the other Spartans found themselves in a seemingly deserted Forerunner city, where they came across a plaza housing six Composers. The Didact then appeared behind them and announced that the Spartans had arrived at the Composer's Forge. Blue Team opened fire on the Didact, who called forth an army of newly-created Promethean constructs to combat the Spartans. While Kelly and the Spartans battled the Prometheans, the Didact took one of the Composers and departed toward the portal, intending to use the device, as well as Gamma Halo, against Earth. With the aid of the monitor 859 Static Carillon (who turned on the Didact after the latter broke an agreement between them), Kelly and rest of Blue Team pursued the Didact through the portal and to the top of the Composer's Abyss on Installation 03, where they barely managed to get out of the way of the Composer rising from the pit. The Didact attacked the Spartans, planning to kill Kelly first. However, John sneaked up on the Forerunner and stabbed him in the eye, focusing the Didact's immediate attention on the Master Chief.
The rest of Blue Team recovered and attacked the Didact, forcing him to throw John aside. Kelly attempted to use a Z-180 Scattershot against the Forerunner, but he simply wrenched it from her grasp and crushed it in his hands. After a brief fight, the Didact subdued all four Spartans, but Static Carillon suddenly appeared behind him and teleported the Didact away before he could finish them off. While John went to pursue the Didact at Gamma Halo's control room, Kelly and the rest of Blue Team returned to the Longsword. After John succeeded in "containing" the Didact, Static Carillon teleported himself and John into Blue Team's Longsword. The monitor subsequently left to repair the ring and Blue Team returned to Earth.
Mission after mission
Returning to Earth, John was debriefed by Hood, where the fleet admiral gave orders for Blue Team to have some rest after years of combat. However, the rest of the team instead left to take on new missions, all of them highly classified. These operations included diplomatic escorts through hostile territory, counter-piracy efforts against salvagers, and strikes against Covenant outposts. At one point in 2558, the team was stationed at the construction site for a new ONI research facility, awaiting orders. Without warning, explosions signaled an attack from fanatical ex-Covenant. During the fighting that followed, the hostiles managed to capture an M510 Mammoth, disable its governor, and drive it down a steep hillside toward the site's main fusion reactor. Blue Team followed in pursuit in an M12 Chaingun Warthog. With only about a minute left before it impacted the reactor, John, Kelly, and Linda ejected from the Warthog when it was close enough to the Mammoth. The three of them just narrowly managed to wrest control of the hulking vehicle from its Kig-Yar and Sangheili hijackers. Kelly discovered scientists hiding inside the mammoth and relayed this to John, who was driving. Their presence meant he couldn't just drive it off a cliff, as doing so would almost certainly kill them. Instead, he steered it away from the reactor at the last second, but the near miss still resulted in the destruction of a decent amount of fabricated material that had been constructed. Kelly ensured that the scientists onboard were okay. The manager in charge of the construction project rushed over to Kelly and the other Spartans after the smoke cleared and demanded to know who he should blame for the damage. John, who had taken the Mammoth's controls, took responsibility. The incredulous man accused the Master Chief of thinking he could get away with anything because of his status as a hero. At this moment, Fred jumped in to reprimand the thankless individual they had all just saved, finding it difficult to maintain an easy demeanor in the face of such disrespect. John kept a cooler head and directed the team to return to a nearby airstrip, as their mission orders had come in.
At some point, Kelly and the three others returned to the glassed remains of Reach, where they recalled their past and paid their respects to Sam, who had died so many years ago.
On October 23, 2558, Kelly and the rest of Blue Team were deployed from the UNSC Infinity on a mission to find and secure Argent Moon, an ONI research vessel that had been missing for nineteen months. Departing from a Pelican, Blue Team managed to infiltrate the Argent Moon by shooting out one of the windows, subsequently causing many Sangheili part of Jul 'Mdama's Covenant to be sucked out into the vacuum. Ascertaining that there were no human survivors aboard, Kelly and the others fought towards central control, where they planned to disable the gravity and life support systems on the ship in order to kill off the rest of the Covenant.
During the mission, John experienced a vision from Cortana telling him that the Domain was open, that Meridian was next, and that the Reclamation was about to begin. Upon coming to, he told Blue Team what he had seen. Resolving to deal with it later, they continued onwards according to their original plan. Upon witnessing Covenant vessels exiting slipspace all around the Argent Moon, however, the plan changed to asset denial and it was decided that the Argent Moon must be destroyed. Blue Team fought to the ship's reactor and disabled its safeties so that it would begin to overheat and detonate. However, the Argent Moon responded with automatic safeties, moving the reactor to a cooling center where it could be contained. Needing to ensure its overload, Blue Team followed the reactor to the cooling center in vacuum, using Banshees to destroy its coolant pipes. With their interference, the cooling system failed and the reactor began overheating, prepping Argent Moon's destruction.
Blue Team needed to escape, but their Banshees would not escape the explosion in time and their arrival Pelican appeared to have been destroyed. John thus ordered them to the hangar where they could take a Winter-class prowler and escape into slipspace. Arriving at a hangar, the Spartans found the parked prowler ONI Acrisius, but needed to recharge its fuel cells. Many more Covenant attacked them while Blue Team defended themselves, waiting for the prowler to prep for launch. With the hangar cleared and the Acrisius ready, John-117 radioed the UNSC Infinity and informed them that he would be sending Blue Team to Meridian. However, Infinity was mysteriously already aware of Cortana's return and ordered Blue Team back to them while another Spartan team was sent to deal with her. Rejecting their orders, Blue Team chose to go AWOL and evacuated aboard the Acrisius, leaving the Argent Moon as it exploded.
Absent without leave
The very next day, the UNSC declared Kelly-087 and the other members of Blue Team AWOL. Fireteam Osiris, a Spartan-IV unit led by Spartan Jameson Locke, was tasked with recovering Blue Team and the Acrisius. Upon arriving at Meridian, Blue Team landed at Apogee Station and proceeded make their way downwards to where the dormant Guardian lay buried. Their arrival on-planet was witnessed by multiple colonists, who were wholly unaware of their intentions. Also unbeknownst to the people of Meridian was the fact that their own Governor Sloan purposefully ensured nobody tried to stop them, as he was already serving Cortana at that point. Blue Team encountered no resistance from the Warden Eternal or any mechanical Prometheans. Fireteam Osiris caught up to Blue Team as they were entering the Guardian. Kelly, Fred, and Linda proceeded to enter the Guardian while John lingered and had an altercation with Locke. Once John had dealt with him and resumed boarding, the Guardian began to awaken. Fireteam Osiris scrambled to escape the collapsing chamber it had been held in as it rose out of the ground. The Guardian caused massive amounts of destruction as it took to the air, both from the very fact that it was emerging from beneath the earth and from electromagnetic shockwaves it sent out continually. During this time, many mechanical Promethean forces were deployed from the Guardian to engage Fireteam Osiris as they tried to escape the destruction in their Pelican. The Guardian jumped to slipspace on a course for Genesis, taking Blue Team with it.
Upon landing on Genesis, Blue Team came across a series of computer consoles sounding musical tunes of Oly Oly Oxen Free. Following the path unlocked by interacting with those consoles, Blue Team battled through stranded Covenant forces before meeting the Warden Eternal. Shortly after learning of the Warden Eternal's role as Cortana's defender, John demanded to meet her, only for the Warden Eternal to refuse and commence hostilities. Shortly after Blue Team's defeat of the Warden Eternal in battle, Cortana finally revealed herself to them, expressing relief that they made it to Genesis. Upon questioning Cortana on the circumstances of her survival, they learned that the Domain had saved her; Cortana referred to it as the "fountain of youth" for AIs. Suspicious of Cortana's desire to reunite with them, Blue Team proceeded further into the planet in order to physically locate her. Shortly afterward, Fireteam Osiris caught up with Blue Team. Before the two Spartan teams could team up, Cortana separated them. Blue Team fought an uphill battle through Promethean forces and multiple bodies of the Warden Eternal before physically meeting Cortana. There she revealed to them her plan to use the Guardians as a means of enforcing a forced peace upon the galaxy. Rejecting Cortana's plan, John ordered her to stand down and return to Earth with the team. Cortana refused and sealed Blue Team in a Cryptum, intending to keep them in stasis for 10,000 years. With the aid of Exuberant Witness, Fireteam Osiris narrowly managed to free Blue Team from the Cryptum.
Following Cortana’s departure, both Blue Team and Fireteam Osiris together fought their way through hordes of Promethean constructs to reach a D79-TC Pelican that had previously arrived on the planet via a Guardian’s Slipspace entry. Based on Osiris' recommendation, they agreed to return to Sanghelios; with Kelly piloting the dropship, the joint team requested Witness’ help, who opened a Slipspace portal for them.
It only took a few minutes to traverse the portal through slipspace. When the Pelican emerged, the Spartans found themselves flying through a cavernous cave. Kelly swore loudly upon being faced with such a rough exit but managed to roll the craft, swinging it back and forth, in order to navigate the twisted interior and emerge from it seconds later. Outside the Spartans found themselves faced with a deep Sanghelios night. Thinking Cortana must have sent a Guardian there, Kelly checked the planetary communications system to confirm that at least a significant portion of the planet had been blacked out, as she wasn't able to raise anyone they should have been able to reach from their vantage point. Locke advised that she keep the Pelican low and quiet and keep its lights turned off so as not to draw attention. He then mentioned that if they could get back to the UNSC Infinity, Halsey might be able to work out a solution, which caught Kelly and the other Spartan-IIs by surprise. Both Locke and Buck explained that they had rescued the doctor from Jul 'Mdama and brought her back to the Infinity and that she had subsequently accompanied them to Sanghelios. Kelly asked why Captain Lasky would have allowed her to come along, clearly having a hard time digesting what she was hearing.
The portal had deposited them relatively near the Sangheili city of Sunaion off the coast of Qivro. Olympia Vale guessed that the Swords of Sanghelios were likely still camped in Nuusra where they had recently staged an attack on Jul 'Mdama's Covenant from just days prior and told Kelly to bring the dropship up to about a kilometer so they could look for campfires. She complied straightaway and began heading east. She brought the Pelican in over the coast and noted a few fires scattered throughout the terrain, but it was difficult to tell if they'd been intentionally made. Further down the coast she broadened her search pattern, wheeling slowly into the wider Nuusra interior. That was when she spotted an encampment near a series of fires about halfway down the side of a cliff. She turned on the bird's searchlights as she brought it in to land and warned the others that several armored Sangheili were emerging from a large tent. Kelly slowly landed them and soon enough the leaders of each respective team were being met at the bottom of the Pelican's ramp by the Arbiter, Commander Sarah Palmer, and Doctor Halsey. Palmer spoke with Kelly over comms, telling her to shut down the lights—which she did immediately, along with the rest of India 127. After everyone had disembarked they were welcomed by the Arbiter, Thel 'Vadam, and John introduced him to Kelly, Linda, and Fred. 'Vadam invited them all to join in a celebratory meal commemorating their victory over the last of Jul 'Mdama's Covenant. Halsey revealed that she had gotten a message from Roland on the Infinity and that it would be appearing off of the far side of Suban the following day at 1800 hours. Now that they had transportation, they could be there waiting for it when it showed. Kelly and the others then took off their helmets and joined the Sangheili in dining on colo and kuscatu. During the meal Kelly, Linda, Fred, John, and Halsey went off on their own for a time to talk.
Everyone was awake around an hour before sunrise and all the humans piled into the Pelican. Kelly took the controls once again and punched it straight up into the sky after checking for the presence of any nearby Guardians. They blazed right through the atmosphere at top speed, leaving Sanghelios behind. She assured the others they'd get to the rendezvous on time, though it was a trip that took a few hours. When Infinity finally showed up Kelly made contact and found herself speaking to Captain Veronica Dare, who had her land India 127 in the ship's fifth portside bay. The Spartans were met there by a lieutenant who announced that Halsey, Locke, Palmer, and John were wanted on the bridge. Palmer instructed the rest of them to get cleaned up and to decompress for a bit and soon a team of engineers was scanning and getting readings from their armor. The engineers brought Kelly and the others to the ship's assemblage bay so they could then have it removed. The Spartan-IIs had to be taken to a different section than Buck, Tanaka, and Vale due to having slightly different frames.[Note 1]
Raid on CASTLE Base
In late October of 2559 Kelly and the rest of Blue Team departed the Infinity for a covert insertion onto the surface of Reach in the Epsilon Eridani system. The team's mission concerned the penetration of the rubble-filled ruins of CASTLE Base and the recovery of top-secret assets locked away in Doctor Halsey's abandoned laboratory there. It was hoped that the assets in question could prove useful against Cortana. The presence of an occupying alien force on the planet, however, soon turned what should have been a simple retrieval operation into a full-blown crisis.
Personality and traits
Fast not only physically but mentally as well, Kelly is highly perceptive and observant. She has a dry sense of humor and often cracks jokes over her and her team's situation and mission. She is less proficient at concealing her emotions than most of her comrades; as such her body language tends to belie her mood. Early in her SPARTAN-II training, she resisted initial indoctrination generally out of fear and anger.
Only a handful of other Spartans have as much experience as Kelly, meriting her a plethora of awards. She claims to be ignorant of these honors she is entitled to and has shown little interest in the biographies and records of non-Spartans.
Skills and abilities
Kelly is the fastest of the Spartan-IIs, making her easily the fastest human to have ever lived. She is capable of running for extended periods of up to 62 kph (38.502 mph) and has quicker reflexes than her peers; within current Mjolnir GEN2 systems, she is capable of running at speeds in excess of 65 kph (40.393 mph). In order to keep her reflexes sharp she exercises routinely with "twitch-response drills" and Zen "no-thought" practices. She has to slow herself down considerably to spar with another Spartan. Her speed has led her to being termed the team's "Rabbit", acting as quick bait to draw enemies into traps laid by the other Spartans. She has also demonstrated an incredible tolerance for pain, as she has been injured quite gravely on several occasions and managed to recover fully each time.
At age six, Kelly had her hair dyed blue and was taller than John-117. John eventually outgrew her and her hair color returned to its natural brown color. She originally wore her hair close-cropped, though by 2557 it had grown almost to her shoulders and was worn in a ponytail. John once noted that Kelly's face had a "rough, angular beauty".
Kelly-087 prefers armor with full-shield masks in combat. As such, she favored the MJOLNIR Powered Assault Armor Mark IV to Mark VI models of the EVA and Pilot armor variants. Kelly's initial Mark IV armor was base green, with a rabbit painted onto it as a reference to her speed and nickname. The Mark IV EVA armor she later donned was colored white. Kelly began wearing a light-blue tinted Hermes armor variant, patterned after EVA armor, once Blue Team transitioned to the Mjolnir GEN2 platform. Her Spartan tag, 087, is written in Braille on the left side of her chest armor. At some point between February and October 2559, she upgraded to a set of GEN3 Mjolnir and wore a light-blue tinted armor with a Hermes-class helmet.
Due to her speed and ability to quickly eliminate any distance between herself and opponents, she prefers to arm herself with close-range weaponry such as the M90 shotgun. However, she has also frequently wielded various models of assault rifle, typically of the MA5 series. During the Spartans' escape from CASTLE base, she armed herself with dual M6D pistols. Kelly prefers to use human weaponry, comparing using Covenant weapons to be barely better than throwing rocks. She has also used Promethean weapons on occasion, beginning with her deployment to Installation 03, though her preferred weapon loadout as of 2558 remains her personal M45 shotgun, Oathsworn, and an M6H2 magnum sidearm.
List of appearances