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Literature / Halo: The Thursday War

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Halo: The Thursday War is a 2012 novel set in the Halo universe, and the second part of Karen Traviss's Kilo-Five Trilogy. Following the events of Halo: Glasslands, Evan Phillips attempts to keep alive after surviving a surprise attack by Brute rebels, ONI tries to handle the ever increasing tension between the Arbiter and the forces of the zealous Avu Med 'Telcam, and Jul 'Mdama contemplates how he might escape his confinement on the Shield World Trevelyan. These conflicts lead up to the events on Requiem in Halo 4, while the storyline of the trilogy itself is followed up in Halo: Mortal Dictata.

Contains Examples Of:

  • Big Damn Heroes: The UNSC Infinity to the Arbiter; arriving just before his keep is glassed and quelling the uprising against him by themselves.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Phillip's ability to solve arums. They're based on a type of lock Forerunners used for their portals. Like the ones deep in Otom's temple.
  • Cliffhanger: The subplot with Naomi's terrorist father is brought in at the end of Glasslands, put on hold when Kilo-Five goes to find Phillips, then is put back on track by the end. The book ends with Naomi and Vaz spotting Naomi's father in the back of a truck.
  • Foreshadowing: Parangosky comments that nothing can harm Earth, not unless "the Forerunners themselves came back from the dead". Well...
  • Honor Before Reason: Raia 'Mdama, despite wanting the Elites to stop focusing on being warriors, joins the Servants of the Abiding Truth to look for her husband Jul 'Mdama. She ends up getting killed when the Covenant separatists shoot down the frigate they're fleeing Sanghelios on, and lead Jul to want to destroy humanity not out of security, but for Revenge.
  • Only Sane Man: Jul 'Mdama feels this way about himself in regards to his own people, and it's not too hard to see why.
  • Outlaw Town: Venezia, which is populated by not only human rebels, but rogue Jackals, Grunts, and Brutes. At one point a Skirmisher and a human rebel are even seen driving around in a truck chatting.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Though it's arguable whether or not Parangosky counts as a hero... As of Halo 4, it looks like Parangosky and Osman's plan to create a civil war among the Elites has blown up in their faces. All the Elite fanatics they hoped to cultivate as a counterweight to the Arbiter are now eager reinforcements for the Didact. Perhaps Halsey and Parangosky aren't that different when it comes to the morality of their actions, but Halsey seems to have a better track record of her work not turning into disaster. Parangosky even admits to herself that Halsey wouldn't have dropped the ball as badly as Parangosky's people did.
    • The Arbiter shoots down a ship that Jul's wife, Raia, was on, killing her. This causes Jul to swear undying vengeance and establish a new Covenant splinter group, which nearly starts another Human-Covenant War.
  • No Biochemical Barriers: Averted. Jul becomes very sick if he eats human food.
  • Obstructive Zealot: When the siege of Vadam keep is about to begin, Avu Med 'Telcam orders the Servants of the Abiding Truth to kill any of Thel 'Vadam's supporters who flee, but also orders them to not destroy any Forerunner buildings or ruins. Most the bridge of the frigate he's on audibly groans, realizing how much this will hinder them.
  • Revenge Before Reason: Jul 'Mdama is willing to look for a being every sign and person has been telling him to stay the heck away from for everyone's sake in his willingness to find an ally to avenge his wife's death.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Jul 'Mdama. After escaping and getting word that his wife and best friend died after humans interfered in the assault on Vadam, he takes control of the zealous Elites of Hesduros, resolves to find the Didact to help in his campaign against humanity, and forms the resurgent Covenant of Halo 4.
  • Shout-Out: Onyx, which is revealed to have the designation Shield World Zero-Zero-Six, has since been renamed Trevelyan. In-universe, it's after Kurt Ambrose's real name but paired with the number designation, is also a sly reference to another Trevelyan.
  • Tastes Like Chicken: Defied. Jul remarks that no, colo does not taste like chicken.
  • Unwanted Rescue: Kilo-Five captures Telcam after the disastrous end to his uprising. Being an Elite, he doesn't take kindly to being "rescued".
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds:
    • Sure, Jul 'Mdama is preparing a force to confront humanity once again, but you still gotta feel sorry for him, after losing his wife and all.
    • Staffan Sentzke, an Insurrectionist who deals in nuclear weapons hates the UNSC, because he blames them for the death of his daughter and caused her wife to commit suicide. He's not far off, his daughter is Naomi-010, and they replaced her with a flash clone. Though the ones who are really responsible for it were ONI.
  • You Have Failed Me: Parangosky to Director Magnusson after Jul 'Mdama's escape.