|Political and military information|
Staff Sergeant Malcolm J. Geffen, commonly known as Mal, is an Orbital Drop Shock Trooper in the UNSC Marine Corps. In January 2553, he was assigned to Kilo-Five, a highly covert intelligence unit under the command of Captain Serin Osman.
During the Human-Covenant War, around 2546, Geffen served in the same unit as fellow ODSTs Vasily Beloi and Emanuel Barakat and a solid camaraderie developed between them. During a battle on Imber near the end of the war, Geffen, Beloi and Barakat hijacked a Spirit to exfiltrate from the planet, later leaving the dropship on Criterion. Later in the war, Mal was stationed at Mars, where the ODSTs are headquartered. On October 13, 2552, he was part of a scouting team that investigated gravitic and radiation anomalies near Argyre Planitia. On-site search and assessment revealed cloaked remote sensor platforms of unknown provenance, which triggered cryptonym WIDEAWAKE. Four days later, Mal reported multiple files detailing the initial findings of the scouting team.
In January 2553, Mal Geffen and Vaz Beloi were hand-picked by the Office of Naval Intelligence Commander-in-Chief, Admiral Margaret Parangosky, to serve under Captain Serin Osman as part of a black operations team designated Kilo-Five. The team, comprised of pilot Lian Devereaux, Dr. Evan Phillips, Spartan Naomi-010 and AI Black-Box, were tasked with sowing discord amongst the disorganized Sangheili. On their way to the initial briefing in HIGHCOM Facility Bravo-6 in Sydney, Mal and Vaz stopped by in the ruins of the Parthenon bar to raise a drink in honor of their friend Emanuel Barakat, who had been killed in action during the final stages of the war.
As part of Kilo-Five, Geffen served aboard the prowler UNSC Port Stanley, participating in several missions. They provided arms to Avu Med 'Telcam and the Servants of the Abiding Truth, a faction opposed to the allies of Thel 'Vadam, the Arbiter. He and Vaz later extracted ONI agent Mike Spenser from the planet Reynes, where they were involved in a brief firefight with several Kig-Yar who were attempting to claim the team's dropship, Tart-Cart, for themselves. Kilo-Five also seized the Covenant cargo ship Piety and successfully captured an onboard Huragok, Requires Adjustment.
In February 2553, after ONI had established communications with the human survivors inside the Onyx shield world, now known as Trevelyan, Admiral Parangosky ordered Kilo-Five to arrest Dr. Catherine Halsey. Geffen accompanied the party that entered the shield world via dropship, detained Halsey and brought her, along with the other survivors, aboard Port Stanley.
In March 2553, Evan Phillips, accompanied with a fragment of BB, left Kilo-Five to study Sangheili culture on Sanghelios. Mal had warned him not to get killed on his journey. Shortly after, Mal and Vaz were assigned to meet with Spenser, who was now assigned as an undercover agent on Venezia. Once in Spenser's hideout in the city of New Tyne, Spenser showed them pictures of all the insurrectionist leaders based on the planet. They looked through the pictures and found one of them to be Naomi's father, Staffan Sentzke. However, their investigation was put on hold after an explosion in Ontom, Sanghelios severed Kilo-Five's communication with BB's fragment and Phillips. They were retrieved by Port Stanley and sent in to recover him.
Mission on Sanghelios
Arriving at Sanghelios during 'Telcam's assault on Vadam, Kilo-Five searched for Phillips in the Temple of the Abiding Truth. They were initially refused entry into the temple by the Sangheili Olar because they were nonbelievers. As BB negotiated with him, a nearby Sangheili crowd became aggravated by their presence. Olar relented and allowed Kilo-Five inside the temple. After they realized that Phillips was no longer inside, they evacuated as the Sangheili mob stormed the area.
BB eventually located Phillips through an intercepted communication and they quickly traveled to Nes'alun keep in Acroli to evacuate him. They extracted Phillips in the midst of a skirmish at the keep. During their evacuation, their Pelican Tart-Cart was damaged by a Banshee, forcing Devereaux to put her down for repairs. They were followed by a Phantom piloted by Forze 'Mdama, who had been sent by 'Telcam to recover Phillips for them. After being instructed to help them with repairs, Forze handed over some pipes and wire and left. Devereaux was then able to get Tart-Cart off the ground.
On their flight back to Port Stanley, a fire erupted and they had to re-route to the UNSC Infinity. There, they witnessed the UNSC's new flagship, Infinity, in action as it helped the Arbiter by destroying many of the Abiding Truth's vessels. Parangosky then ordered them to extract their informant 'Telcam from the ground. As Kilo-Five abducted 'Telcam from the battle, Port Stanley posed as a Kig-Yar pirate ship and destroyed a few of 'Vadam's ships in order to maintain the stalemate between the two factions. Kilo-Five dropped 'Telcam off on New Llanelli and were later retrieved by Port Stanley.
Shortly after the operation at Sanghelios, Mal was deployed to Venezia's capital city of New Tyne. Under the cover identity of a UNSC deserter, he was to accompany Vaz in infiltrating the local militia in order to gain information on the stolen Covenant battlecruiser Pious Inquisitor. He replaced Naomi-010 as Vaz's partner due to the risk of Naomi's relation to the rebel leader Staffan Sentzke compromising the mission.
Mal and Vaz met Nairn and were successful in infiltrating the local militia. They then met Staffan Sentzke and his son Edvin and were taken to see Pious Inquisitor due to their professed experience with Covenant equipment. Using a tracer planted by Vaz, Kilo-Five attempted to seize control of the ship using a slipspace FTL communicator located on Venezia. However, their hack was foiled by the ship's Huragok, Sometimes Sinks, who alerted Sentzke of the attempted intrusion.
Staffan Sentzke had Mal and Vaz captured and interrogated at the Stuttgart armory. Vaz revealed that he had information about Staffan's daughter. While Sentzke continued to question Vaz at a secure location, Black-Box used Mal and Vaz's neural transponders to locate them. Naomi took the team's new dropship, Bogof — retrieved only moments earlier from Anchor 10 — and rescued Mal from the rebels' compound, instantly killing the rebel posted to guard him. Meanwhile, Lian Devereaux took Tart-Cart to retrieve Vaz and took Sentzke prisoner. They returned to Port Stanley where Sentzke was informed about the Spartan program and allowed to reunite with his daughter.
- Main article: Skirmish on Pious Inquisitor
Meanwhile, a crew of Kig-Yar pirates contracted by 'Telcam located Pious Inquisitor. The Kig-Yar, led by Shipmistress Chol Von, boarded the Inquisitor and attempted to commandeer the ship for themselves. Sinks, distrustful of the Kig-Yar and only compliant to Sentzke's orders, placed the ship in complete lock-down. Once Kilo-Five located the ship, Sentzke convinced Sinks to allow him and Vaz to come onboard. Mal and Naomi subsequently boarded the ship in a different location and eliminated several members of the Kig-Yar crew.
With Mal and Naomi pressing on the bridge, Shipmistress Von set the ship to explode and escaped with her remaining crew. While Kilo-Five escaped to their dropships, Sentzke took a Spirit from the shuttle bay but stayed in range to ensure Naomi was safe. Sentzke was assumed dead when the ship self-destructed; unknown to Kilo-Five, he had actually survived, his Spirit having been outfitted with a miniature slipspace drive by Sometimes Sinks.
With Pious Inquisitor destroyed and the Venezian threat seemingly neutralized for the time being, Kilo-Five was granted shore leave on Cascade. Mal and Vaz went to drink at a bar in the Old Admiralty Hotel in Kowloon.
Personality and traits
Mal Geffen is known to be sarcastic, flirtatious, and has an odd sense of humor. He is good friends with fellow ODSTs Vasily Beloi and Emanuel Barakat. After Barakat's death, Mal was determined to keep a promise to Barakat: to visit his favorite bar in Sydney. Mal and Vaz enjoyed going to different bars on other human colonies to try the drinks and flirt with women. Vaz was surprised that Mal did not attempt to flirt with Naomi-010 when they first met. After watching Staffan Sentzke comfort a distressed Sometimes Sinks, Mal began to pity him and had a hard time seeing him as a threat.
Mal is nervous around high-ranking members of the Office of Naval Intelligence, especially with Admiral Margaret Parangosky. Mal suffered from slight claustrophobia, something he thought was silly since his career involved him free-falling into an unknown terrain in a "glorified coffin".
- Geffen's medical zap badge reads "A+/NO V-CIN" indicating his blood type is A+. The meaning of "NO V-CIN" is not clear, however NO may mean "nitric oxide" suggesting he may have at one time suffered from pulmonary embolism or angina.
- While writing Halo: Glasslands, Karen Traviss originally envisioned Mal as being Australian, but later changed his nationality to British.
List of appearances
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 90
- Halo: Glasslands, page 83
- Halo Waypoint- The Halo Bulletin: 10/12/11, Exclusive Book Excerpt - Glasslands
- Halo: Glasslands, page 387
- Halo Waypoint — 343 Sparkast #5
- Halo: Glasslands, "Chapter 2"
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 185
- Halo: Glasslands, page 64
- Halo: The Thursday War, page 429
- Halo Legendary Crate, Data Drop #2
- Halo: Glasslands, page 35
- Halo: Glasslands, page 67
- Halo: Glasslands, page 237
- Halo: Glasslands, page 456
- Halo: The Thursday War, page 179
- Halo: The Thursday War, page 245
- Halo: The Thursday War, page 265
- Halo: The Thursday War, page 329
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 84
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 147
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 183
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, pages 240-245
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, pages 261-283
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 322
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 338
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 398
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 421
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 445
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, pages 452-456
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 480
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 92
- Halo: Glasslands, page 103
- Halo: Mortal Dictata, page 197
- Halo: Glasslands, page 27
- Halo: Glasslands, page 62
- Twitter: Mal started in my mind as...