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Annual Award Best Canon Expansion This article, Daisy-023, written by Laconia, was voted as the Best Canon Expansion of 2012 in the Fifth Annual Halo Fanon Wikia Awards.


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Daisy-023
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Biographical Information

REAL NAME

Daisy Ann Spencer

DATE OF BIRTH

July 25, 2511

DATE OF DEATH

2531 (aged 20)

HOMEWORLD

Sargasso

Physical Description

HEIGHT

208.4 cm

HAIR COLOR

blond

EYE COLOR

blue

GENDER

Female

CYBERNETICS

SPARTAN neural interface

Political and Military Information

RANK

20px-CPO.png Chief Petty Officer (E-7)

SPARTAN TAG

023

SPECIALITY

CQC

CLASS

UNSC Spartan Emblem SPARTAN-II, Class I

ERA

Human-Covenant War

[Source]


Cquote1 What would our moms and dads think of us if they saw us? I wonder if they'd recognize us-- not because we've grown up, but because of what's been done to us? All of those years of training... all those horrible surgeries and augmentations. Cquote2
— Daisy-023 to Ralph-303

Chief Petty Officer Daisy-023, born Daisy Ann Spencer, was a Spartan-II commando of the UNSC Navy who participated in campaigns to take back Harvest from the Covenant. Her short career as a Spartan was unique in that she was one of the few S-II trainees to escape from Reach and discover that they had been replaced with clones, and the only trainee not to commit suicide or develop psychological problems as a result. She died in 2531 on Harvest while attempting to evacuate Marine personnel from hostile territory. She was listed as MIA for propaganda purposes by the UNSC and her brain was used in Project MNEMOSYNE to create the smart AI Amaranth.

Biography

Childhood

Daisy3

Daisy at age six.

She was born Daisy Spencer in the city of Fairfields on the UNSC colony Sargasso, to parents Jon and Amy Spencer. They were a well-to-do family who owned a large house surrounded by lavish ornamental gardens. Jon Spencer, a successful businessman who sold leisure aircraft to Sargasso's wealthy elite, ensured that his young daughter grew up with plenty of toys and parental nurturing, and even hired a private tutor to oversee her education instead of sending her to one of the local schools. Thus the first few years of Daisy's life were filled with love, happiness and security. By most standards, Daisy was incredibly spoiled by her parents, but lacked the bad behavior typical of a spoiled child.

Daisy was an intelligent child despite her sheltered environment and it quickly became apparent that she was capable of learning far more than what was usual for her age. She easily advanced through studies fit for children years ahead of her and her parents made plans to send her to one of Sargasso's most renowned private schools, the Holman-Grey Institute for Gifted Children. However intelligent Daisy might have been, though, she was still prone to childish mischief, and often found ways to escape the boundaries of her home. She would venture across the bridge that led to her house and go into town, usually to admire the majestic fountain in the middle of a large square. It was this routine that would ultimately lead to her introduction to Dr. Halsey and eventual abduction by the ONI for the SPARTAN-II Program.

In 2517, shortly after Daisy turned six, she was approached by a woman in a sundress during one of her trips to the fountain. The woman, Dr. Catherine Halsey, asked Daisy a series of questions, and the little girl's answers led Halsey to declare her a viable candidate for SPARTAN-II. Halsey made special note of Daisy's habit of visiting the fountain, and when the abduction team came to Fairfields, they found her at her usual spot. She was sedated and spirited away by the ONI, with a clone identical to her in appearance and possessing flash-transferred memories remaining in her place. The Spencers never suspected that the real Daisy was gone, even after the clone began to suffer from near-inexplicable genetic diseases. ONI personnel planted to deal with the issue convinced Daisy's parents that their daughter had been genetically damaged by a faulty fertilization treatment, which led the Spencers to wage a court battle against the company that had provided such services; the money they acquired after winning the case was dedicated to finding a cure for their child, whose decline slowed significantly thanks to expensive and ground-breaking medical intervention.

Conscription and Escape

On September 23, 2517, Daisy was brought out of cryo sleep along with seventy-four other children and taken to an underground amphitheater in the Reach Military Complex, where Dr. Halsey informed them of their conscription into the SPARTAN-II Project. The revelation that Daisy would be unable to return to her parents bothered her deeply, and though the rigorous labors of boot were designed to make the trainees forget their former lives, she held onto her memories of home and family. She was sorted into a team with Ralph-303, Joseph-122, Basil-086, and Juliana-009. All five of them expressed a mutual desire to somehow escape from Reach and return to their parents; as the training went on and their skills expanded, this desire blossomed into a secret plot to rebel against their trainers and force their way offworld. Though they never revealed these secrets to any of the other Spartans, there always existed a divide between the small group and the seventy other children, who had accepted their new lives and followed orders without question. The only other teams that might have gone along with the rebellious seven were Gray and Black, but Ralph refused to let Daisy inform them of their intentions, afraid that the plan would be revealed to their ever-watchful taskmasters.

Daisy's performance during boot was high enough to elevate her to the position of team leader, and she became increasingly more assertive as the passing years changed her from a scared conscript to a capable Spartan trainee. Gradually, the dream of escape became a fanciful notion in her mind and her team collectively stopped trying to plot their eventual absconding, having more or less adapted to their imposed duty. They remained unique in that they continued to actively discuss details of their former lives, however, a tendency which invited scorn and contempt from some other candidates. Daisy handled the disdain as best she could, though she felt a degree of sympathy for the children who had become so indoctrinated that they completely forgot their last names. Her mindset centered around the necessity of defending Earth's colonies from the destructive whims of insurgents, but in a manner that omitted the dogged devotion other trainees exhibited toward the UNSC. Despite the friction her views caused, she was noted by Halsey as possessing perhaps the most mental fortitude of the Spartan-II conscripts; her resistance to total indoctrination piqued the doctor's curiosity, as it seemed to render her stronger instead of making her vulnerable.

"We're not going to be your toys anymore!"
―Trainee 023

In 2525, all S-II candidates underwent multiple augmentation procedures to improve their strength, reflexes and durability. Twenty-seven of the now-teenaged Spartans died during or after the surgeries, while twelve were rendered handicapped by unpleasant results such as deformities and Parkinson's disease. Daisy's team was one of the few to emerge with all its members still fit for active duty. In spite of this good luck, they were horrified by what happened to nearly half their comrades and by the suffering they themselves had endured during the procedures; nearly all semblance of blind loyalty to the cause was shattered by grief and disgust as they realized they were truly test subjects in a terrible experiment, their bodies having been transformed without their consent. As soon as the side effects of the surgeries had diminished enough, Daisy and her team took some of their drill instructors and doctors hostage and demanded their freedom from Dr. Halsey. Halsey granted them this and they quickly fled into one of Reach's thick forests to hide, taking sidearms, supplies and sophisticated earpieces that would allow them to hear UNSC communiques. A short time later, they reached the city of Manassas, where they split up and sought out ships on which they could stow away to reach their homeworlds. Joseph-122 was captured, but the others made it out; Daisy boarded a freighter bound for Sargasso and hid in the cargo hold, living off what rations she had left and utilizing her Spartan stealth skills for the duration of the two-week Slipspace voyage.

Homecoming

Daisy arrived on Sargasso and quickly traveled to her hometown, eager to reunite with her family and resume the life that she couldn't remember fully but desperately missed. When she reached Fairfields, she went to the fountain and was flooded with memories of the day she was kidnapped there. Irritated by the painful nature of those memories, she threw away her dog tags and decided to head home, unaware that the UNSC was tracking her. She became excited upon arriving at her former residence, but that excitement turned into uncertainty when she caught sight of a pale blond-headed figure seated in a powered wheelchair. She stood there for a few minutes, her enhanced eyesight taking in details that confused her, mainly the clone's nearly identical resemblance to herself. While Daisy was frozen in bewilderment, she received a transmission from Dr. Halsey, who was observing her from the overhead safety of a Hornet VTOL. Halsey explained to her that in order to cover up the kidnapping of so many children for the S-II project, each abducted child was replaced by a clone who would live a life in their place. The doctor then demanded that Daisy, or 023 as she called her, return to Reach, her “home.” This information hit Daisy hard and the traumatized Spartan began to approach her clone, drawing her sidearm.

Daisy6

The two Daisys meet at last.

Once she was close enough, she leveled the pistol at her clone's head and let it remain there for several seconds, but did not fire. The clone remained strangely calm despite this threatening posture and did not cry for help as Daisy deliberated whether or not to shoot. Finally Daisy lowered her arm and holstered her handgun, then turned to walk away, accepting that she no longer had any place on Sargasso and that the life meant for her now belonged to someone else. Before she could leave, however, the clone spoke to her, stating that she wished to be strong like Daisy someday. The clone then presented her counterpart with a small teddy bear keychain, the same toy Daisy had dropped into the fountain on the day she was taken; it was later theorized by Doctor Halsey that the clone might have remembered being switched with the real Daisy, but as she believed herself to be Daisy Spencer, kept the confusing memory to herself. The Spartan trainee took the bear and left without a word, and was captured soon afterward. She submitted without a fuss to the ONI team sent to retrieve her and departed Sargasso in their custody.

When she got back to Reach, she was detained in the brig for one week. Ralph-303, who had also been brought back, was also imprisoned there, but removed after psychological analysis determined that he was unfit to serve as a Spartan. The other two escapees who had made it off Reach, Basil and Juliana, did not return because they took their own lives after discovering their clones. They, along with Ralph, were added to the list of those who had died during augmentations to cover up the incident. Joseph-122 questioned Daisy about what she found when she went home, but she refused to tell him, thinking it best that he didn't know he had been replaced. Daisy made it clear to Dr. Halsey that she would never try to escape again and Halsey cleared her to rejoin the rest of her squad. The doctor's private notes stated that she allowed Daisy to keep the bear keychain, and that Daisy never smiled again after her brief return to Sargasso. Halsey's true feelings on the matter remain a mystery, but it is clear that the ordeal was troubling to all involved.

Human-Covenant War

Daisy1

SPARTAN-023, sans helmet.

Daisy received MJOLNIR Mk IV powered assault armor in late 2525, as she and her fellow Spartans were called upon to use their talents against the xenocidal Covenant Empire, an alien collective whose self-proclaimed religious mission was to exterminate humanity. Though Daisy, like all S-IIs, had been trained her whole life to fight against human combatants, she quickly learned how to wage war against these new extraterrestrial enemies and was deployed in numerous campaigns to fight them. Now part of Red Team, Daisy assumed her duty with grim resignation and derived some small solace from the fact that she and her comrades were now more necessary than ever -- a truth which justified her decision to return to the program and provided a measure of closure.

Exposure to the atrocities the Covenant committed against humanity strengthened Daisy's resolve to fight for her species and helped to mend her perspective on the UNSC's desperate measures. Though she would always view her kidnapping and the crimes surrounding the event as wrong, she acknowledged that the Spartans were mankind's best hope in the fight against this unprecedented foe. Her mental fortitude became apparent as she served with skill and efficiency on the same level as any other Spartan-II despite skepticism from many of Halsey's peers that Daisy would ultimately break from the effects of her ordeal on Sargasso. Halsey's deduction that Daisy would deal rationally with her complex emotions was proven true as SPARTAN-023 defied expectations and demonstrated a relatively well-adjusted outlook on life as a Spartan. Her dedication to winning the war against the Covenant was unquestionable, and she maintained the respect of her comrades in the years following her reintegration into SPARTAN-II.

Death

Daisy-023 participated in the final months of the Harvest Campaign along with many other Spartan-IIs, assisting UNSC forces in repelling alien ground advances. She was sorted into Delta-Red Team alongside Jorge-052 and Arthur-079, their respective teams having been temporarily divvied up to spread Spartan assets throughout the theater of operations. In January of 2531, Delta-Red was tasked with evacuating Marine personnel from the city of Fólkvangr and planting a tactical nuclear device following an unsuccessful attempt to take out a Covenant command center that had been built into the city's underground tunnels. Unfortunately, the Pelican carrying their nuke was shot down several kilometers from the imperiled Marines; Daisy, who had earned field grade promotion to the rank of Chief Petty Officer just weeks before, assigned her two teammates to recover the nuke and undertook the evacuation of the Marines herself. She had underestimated the Covenant presence in the area, however, and was badly wounded by Needler rounds which punctured her armor and exploded, driving shards into her chest. She was incapacitated by her injuries and forced to watch as the Marines, along with the Pelican sent to evacuate them, were destroyed. Daisy died before her teammates could make it to her location, having suffocated from blood in her lungs. Her body was discovered by John-117, who had arrived just minutes after her death and succeeded in clearing the immediate area of hostiles.

Her body was taken by the Office of Naval Intelligence and, though she received a token funeral, dissected as part of continuing research on human augmentation. While her brain was carefully excised and considered for AI creation, the rest of her was utilized for experiments which contributed to the development of Project CHRYSANTHEMUM and other advances. Daisy's brain was taken for use in Project MNEMOSYNE, an artificial intelligence research project which sought to convert dead Spartan-IIs into AIs; the high intelligence quotients of Halsey's conscripts made them valuable subjects for MNEMOSYNE, as only the best human minds could be digitized. The AI born from the Cognitive Impression Modeling scan of Daisy's brain called itself Amaranth, a nod to its former self; Daisy's personality and memories lived on through this AI to an extent, and were able to influence future events.

Personality

Daisy possessed a quiet and somewhat somber nature, and was not prone to emotional outbursts even as a young child. Her reserved yet willful demeanor fit well with her status as a child soldier, enabling her to handle situations without succumbing to her feelings. Even when confronted with the ugly truth of her kidnapping and replacement, she refused to show her grief and took action. Instead of refusing to deal with her emotions, however, she was capable of handling them on an internal level and concealing her thoughts from others unless she willingly divulged them. Unlike Ralph-303, she did not react violently to the discovery of her clone; though she did contemplate killing her replacement, she was unable to carry out the act, unwilling to put her parents through the shock. Her escape from the Spartan-II Program following augmentation hinted at mental instability, but Halsey categorized the incident as a regrettably natural response to the tragic outcome of the surgeries and insisted that Daisy's willing return was proof of her reliability. In spite of the various psychological abnormalities which resulted from her unconventional upbringing, Daisy was one of the most well-adjusted Spartan-IIs and remained dedicated to fighting for humanity until the day of her death.

Characteristics

Quotes

Trivia

  • This article was created because the author liked the concept presented in Halo Legends: Homecoming, but was not satisfied with how it was presented, and therefore had to write her own version to make everything hunky-dory.
  • The AI created from Daisy's brain will serve a purpose in future fanon material. The names "Daisy" and "Amaranth" are both types of flowers; "Amaranth" means "unfading" and typifies immortality in poetry and other literary works.

Gallery

Deceased