Categorization has sped since the improvements were announced, but there are many hurdles. The indexing of sentient species may have irreversible effects on the surviving insentient species. We will have extinction events and irreparable environmental harm on at least 18 worlds. Current projections estimate post-archival cataclysm on as many as 31 worlds. The paucity of sentience has been a blessing in this regard.
Would that it were my choice. I have committed to this course because it's the right thing to do. We no longer have the manpower or material to excise remedial measures at a planetary level. I certainly can't justify using the [transit measure] to save my own skin when there are still so many innocents to protect and index.
We have no time to spare, Didact. Every vessel we can fill, we send to the Ark. I dare not cease the mission. Not now, not until I've done all I can. Each one of these souls is finite and precious.
And I'm so close.
Close to saving them all.
I'm close to finishing the task. The indexing and the archival processes are as complete as I can hope for. If we wait longer, we risk catastrophe. The thing has already destroyed every colony on my side of the line.
Please. Activate the Array.
The Mantle? You still hold to that [belief] after all that has happened? After this thing has consumed a million worlds?
Can't you see? Belief in the Mantle sealed our doom! Weakened our [protectorates], bred dependence and sloth. Our [so-called Guardianship] has stripped those we would keep safe of any capacity for self-defense!
Were we such noble [Guardians] when we drew our line and abandoned billions to the parasite?
And what about us, Didact? We've been irresistible and immovable for too long. Maybe it's our turn to give.
Are you insane? Would you risk every life in the galaxy for this transparently futile plan? Have you learned nothing in these last [300 years[?]]? The thing will laugh at your efforts!
Do not let your concern for my welfare commit you to this suicidal scheme!
Something is wrong! It's moving away! At night I can see it--flitting shadows--black against the stars. Thousands of ships! Not spiraling outward, but heading for the line! This is the tipping point, Didact. It's no longer feeding.
It's coming for you.
I've remotely destroyed our Keyships. A security measure. Without them I cannot reach the Ark. But neither then can the thing.
I'm trapped. On a beautiful, empty world. Its inhabitants have been safely indexed, every single one of them. They're special--well worth the effort it took to build one final gateway even at this late hour.
This may be our last communication. I'm begging you. Fire the Array. Light the weapon, and let it be done.
"I am the remains of the Forerunner once known as the Librarian. My memories were retained to assist humanity on their path to the Mantle. Though sadly, that plan is now at risk. The Didact is leaving Requiem. Soon. You must not allow it."
"He seeks this - The Composer. A device which will allow him to finally contain the greatest enemy ever faced by the Forerunners. You."
"Mankind spread into the stars with an unexpected, desperate violence. Entire systems fell before the Didact's Warrior-Servants rose to halt the aggression. When the Didact finally exhausted the humans after a millennia, his sentence was severe. We had no way of knowing that the Forerunners were not your only enemy. Humanity hadn't been expanding. They were running. Weakened from our conflict, we were no match for the parasite which pursued you. The Forerunners made plans for a final, great journey. But the Didact refused to yield our Mantle of Responsibility. He would save all life in the galaxy... at a cost. In the Forerunners' quest for transcendence, the Composer had been intended to bridge the organic and digital realms. It would have made us immortal. But its results soured. The stored personalities fragmented, and our attempts to return them into biological states created only abominations. Such moral concerns faded from the Didact's attention. The Flood only assimilated living tissue. The Composer would provide the Didact his solution... and his revenge."
"They were only the beginning. He would have encrypted your entire race if we had not removed the Composer from his care and imprisoned him here. Reclaimer, when I indexed mankind for repopulation, I hid seeds from the Didact. Seeds which would lead to an eventuality. Your physical evolution. Your combat skin. Even your ancilla, Cortana. You are the culmination of a thousand lifetimes of planning."
"Reclaimer, the genesong I placed within you contains many gifts, including an immunity to the Composer, but it must be unlocked."
"Our enemies move deeper into our territory with abandon. They must be eradicated."
"War is your realm, Didact. Not mine."
"You march to this war, facing foes that, while always aggressive, were never so aggressive as they are now."
"Justice is reducing their genetics in such short generations from a space-faring race to... this?"
"If not for their encounter with the Flood, their gene-plan could have surpassed our own. They could have someday held the Mantle of Responsibility."
"Yes, the Mantle is ours, and we hold it so tight, even in death we shall hold it still."
"My Lifeworkers are investigating, but I believe the humans were never attacking us."
"The humans were acting as caretakers, pruning away planets so that this infection would not spread."
"My Lifeworkers have made plans for the reseeding of humanity, and of all life after the Halos are fired."
"My husband has a different opinion on what steps to take against the Flood."
"They were to be safe here. I ensured they would rise once more; better than before."
"You do not face me in person after your deceit!"
"Move the other humans to safety. Ensure the security of their index samples; they must finish what we have failed to do."
"To stop my husband's madness."
"My dear husband... I know your crimes; I have found forgiveness. I know your reasons; I understand them. I know you, perhaps better than you could ever hope to know yourself. I ask you... forgive my transgressions. Like yourself, all I have done, I have done for the greater good. Our time as the galaxy's caretakers is passed. The Flood have overrun us. In the days to come, the Halo rings will fire, eradicating the Flood - and all other life, for a time. I have worked hard to index all species in known space. When the time comes, these indexes will open, and once more, the galaxy will breathe and grow... Blood will pump, life will claw its way out of the oceans and through the mud. Babes will be born, grow old under the warmth of a thousand suns. Civilizations will rise in our stead, and our job as caretakers will at last bear fruit. Until then, I leave you here, my love. The only living thing in this galaxy, sealed safely away. Spend these ages ahead of you in meditation on your choices. When you wake, you will find the humans. I have ensured that they will grow strong and vibrant... They will be our rightful heirs. Their gene plan dictates that the galaxy will be theirs to care for by then. I beg of you... Find the strength to help them learn from our mistakes. And my husband? Let them teach you something. Please."
"He is correct. But what I have is not for him. It is for you. Catherine Halsey." - The Librarian meeting with Dr. Halsey.
"This is the Janus Key. It offers the real-time location of every piece of Forerunner technology in the galaxy." - The Librarian revealing the Janus Key.
"We did not create so much without a means to catalog it all. This was meant for my husband to help you people...when his meditation was complete." - The Librarian explaining her original plan about the Janus Key.
"Take this key to the Absolute Record. Use what you find to propel humankind."
"Requiem's time is at an end. The key and what it details must not be lost." - The Librarian explaining her reasons why she's giving the Janus Key to Dr. Halsey.
"... to the Absolute Record..." - After Fireteam Crimson activate a Forerunner energy source.
"The cosmos brought life into existence. Life is ever changing. I have seen it open itself time and again to change, down to its living heart. But fascinating as these matters may be, I am here to testify about other events. Events that have yet to come to the attention of a [sic] Catalog." - to Catalog before her testimony on her journey to Path Kethona.
"Life roils with competition, death, and replacement, from the tide pool borders of our natal ocean to the farthest stars. Its cruelty and creativity are interwoven."
"You are my children," I whisper, and they respond in many tongues. I am ready now. I know they will not lie to me. They will tell me what they were told, and I will know the truth of it, or not. "I listen, Forthencho." - conversing with the Gravemind's messengers, imprinted with the essences of Forthencho and his warriors.
"The Domain! I tell myself. He is describing the Domain. Could that possibly be true? The Domain was created by Precursors?"
"The Organon! The Domain is the Organon! A wonderful truth, about to be turned by Forerunners into an awful truth. And not far away, outside the circle, Catalog is listening, to this accusation, this testimony regarding what may be the greatest crime of all. If the Halos fire, we will kill our own soul!"
"With an agonized grimace, he collapses face-forward into the dirt and grass. His blood returns to the soil. The others try to sing, but give out only a low, deathly howl-what might be an old battle song, or perhaps conveying a final message from the Gravemind. Its laughter haunting me across thousands of light-years. In minutes, they are all dead, not from the effects of Halo, still to arrive in my time, this system's time. Not from Halo, but from the cruelty of the Gravemind, using them as embodied messengers. A flesh-borne warning to me that victory is not sweet, that our crimes will haunt us forever, that we are not and never will be the inheritors of the Mantle. And that we are about to destroy the greatest thing in the universe."
"I need to send one last message to the Ark, to the IsoDidact. Bear witness." - to Catalog as she prepares her final transmission on the revelation regarding the Domain.
"Tell them what we have heard. Tell them I believe it is true." - following up on the above.
"I think of the Didact, locked in his Cryptum. If the Domain is destroyed, I have condemned my husband to an eternity of darkness, silence, with only his own rage and madness to keep him company."
"I watch our powerful vessel splinter apart and bury itself deep, causing the ground to tremble around me while I wait with the remains of my poor humans, out on the dry grass in the heat of the afternoon sun. What is left of this ship will mine and leverage the raw materials of this vast savanna to build kilometer upon kilometer of portal. It may take a hundred years to complete, a process stretching out long after I am gone, well past even this world's reseeding. But it will be worth it. "
"Who will use this portal? Who will live to return here? And what will they think of this machine that I've buried? Those I have fought for, for so long. Those who, it is clear to me now, ultimately will and must inherit the Mantle. I can only hope that they will survive and upon returning, that they will find this portal and use it to travel to the Ark—in order that they might discover their rightful place in this galaxy, and the great responsibility they have finally inherited. They are the last of my children. They must reclaim their birthright."
"The sun westers. The air swirls and cools. Predators and scavengers come, but ignore me, and refuse the dead Warriors. The last gray and orange glow of day gives way to inky night. The air is very cold, the sky steady and clean. The stars have never seemed so many, never burned brighter.
Never branded my eyes as they do now." - the Librarian concluding her testimonial.