- "The Kig-yar shall have their day! Too long have the Prophets have denied us autonomy, and too long have we chaffed under the yokes of the Sangheili and Jiralhanae. Cast them away! The Kig-yar shall be great, as we once were!"
- ―Jezh, speaking to a Kig-yar crowd in 2553
While the Kig-Yar Privateer Alliance technically encompassed the entirety of Kig-Yar space, for the most part its members stayed true to traditional stereotypical combat roles - the gracile "Jackal" breeds fill a higher-ranked "officer" class, populating the various scout, assassin and sniper niches available to them, while the more robust "Skirmisher" breeds serve more like the Unggoy; frontline infantry shock troops, using high-speed shock tactics against their enemies, lacking the Unggoy's numbers but more than making up for it in unit cohesion, skill and discipline. Historically, Kig-Yar society places a premium on the "Jackals" class - their occupation of high ranking roles means that the opportunity for profit is far greater than the Skirmishers. There have, however, been exceptions to this rule.
Jezh is one such exception, and he is exceptional in more ways than this. Rising surprisingly quickly for a member of his breed, Jezh would rise to captain a Missionary Ship employed by the Ministry of Tranquility in 2552, seeing combat against the UNSC Navy presence above Mars when the Covenant invaded the Solar system. When the Great Schism broke out, many Kig-Yar ships joined the Covenant Loyalist faction due to outstanding debts or the potential for further profit - few did so out of religious loyalty. Jezh was one of the ship captains that did not do so, simply jumping away from the system on November 13th. Jezh expected that the weakened Jiralhanae force would be no match for a Sangheili follow-up expeditionary fleet, and was proven right, though only barely - what he had not expected was for the Covenant to survive in any form, or the Sangheili to make peace with humanity. Knowing that his ship and crew would never be allowed to surrender by either faction, they turned to a life of piracy.
Early on in the post-war period, Jezh sold his Missionary Ship on the Kig-Yar black market - some allege that every Kig-Yar market is a black market - and purchased a newer vessel from the Y'Deio Shipyards. Larger, more heavily armed and armoured, and possessing a human-design slipspace drive provided by ONI during the 2540 efforts to instigate a Covenant internal conflict against the Kig-Yar, the Heikekatohuia lacked the energy shields that would allow it to stand up to another comparable ship in combat, or the super precise and fast slipspace drive that would allow easy escape, but it was not designed as a warship - fast and nimble, and capable of stealth tactics, the Heikekatohuia was purpose-built as a privateer vessel. Taking to the merchant space-ways again, Jezh would eventually become a significant force among the Privateer Alliance, eventually rising to considerable power for a Skirmisher, owning a sizeable amount of a small garrison based on one of Eayn's moons.
In 2556, after the defeat at Unmoving Virtue, the Blood Covenant began recruiting Privateer Alliance privateers, pirates and mercenaries as frontline troops and rear echelon home guard units, freeing up Jiralhanae troops for more important duties, such as offensive raids or starship operation. In this role, Jezh and the Heikekatohuia would be recruited at part of the Expansive Judgement Reserve Fleet guarding the former Covenant hydrogen/deuterium facility in orbit over the gas giant Gargarensis. Remaining as a "static defence", the Kig-Yar "protecting" Gargarensis never really put much effort into their emplacements, instead seeing it as an opportunity at establishing a new colony - one with Jezh at its head, the first Skirmisher to ever become a Pirate Prince. Jezh's preparations were extensive - while the factory itself was largely left unattended, his base of operations were reincorced with active camouflage systems and energy shields stolen from salvaged New Covenant ships, making them nearly undetectable. Moreover, the closeness of the Expansive Judgement system to New Covenant supply lines would be an attractive target to many privateers and pirates, and the mercenary contracts offered by the Blood Covenant would prove another major incentive. By 2561, Jezh's consolidation of power was almost complete - any Jackals who resented following orders from an "inferior" Skirmisher were shown the outside of a spacelock. Jezh's word went unquestioned.
Unfortunately, the initiation of Operation: CORSAIR would prove Jezh's undoing. While the Heikekatohuia would not participate, being repaired after sustaining minor repairs during an attack on UNSC Merchant Marine shipping a month earlier, Jezh would transfer his flagship temporarily to another Kig-Yar vessel, the Zhatzaktul, during a routine salvage operation in the Wolf-1481 system - damaged a week earlier by a Kig-Yar raid on local shipping, a single frigate had escaped notice and the ship entered the system hoping to salvage it, stripping it of anything useful, especially its valuable slipspace drive, the technology of which the Kig-Yar still hadn't come to fully understand. A boarding team was sent over, but discovered and engaged a team of Spartan-II commandoes. Quickly realising the danger the Spartans could pose to himself, he ordered his troops recalled and fled to slipspace before the stealth frigate Midnight Sun could engage it - unknowingly carrying the Spartans aboard. Arriving at Gargarensis, the Spartans activated their slipstream space beacon, alerting the UNSC and Sangheili to its location - and finally allowing them to locate the Blood Covenant's new capital. Operation: LAMENTATION would utterly destroy the Gargarensis refinery, and result in dozens of the larger asteroids used by the Kig-Yar as a base being shattered by MAC fire or drawn into Gargarensis' gravity well, killing thousands of Kig-Yar mercenaries and privateers. The Heikekatohuia was one of three dozen ships to escape the slaughter, regrouping the survivors under Jezh's command.
The loss of a sizeable base would be catastrophic to the survivors - knowing that they were without wealth, any ship berths would turn them away unless they agreed to sell them the ships, something Jezh was unwilling to do. Instead, he masterminded the attack on a Sangheili colony, Triumphant Declaration - although regarded as a relatively secure minor colony by the Sangheili, it was still rich enough for a raid to more than pay off any debt incurred by Jezh's band, and allow them to come away with a handsome profit to reestablish themselves. The raid itself went like clockwork - with no defending forces, the capture and pillaging of orbiting ships, and even audacious raids against ground-based towns and cities saw massive amounts of plunder taken. What Jezh hadn't counted on was how quickly the Sangheili would counter-attack, and the ferocity of their strike. Sending all three hundred ships from the Second Fleet of Enlightened Benevolence, the Sangheili retaliation was overwhelming, destroying most of the still-orbiting fleet in a matter of minutes, cutting off the ground-deployed looters escape, and landing legions of elite warriors to hunt down and exterminate the invaders. Even the Heikekatohuia was not immune - although it lasted longer than most other ships, even it succumbed to Sangheili fire, though not before a single escape pod launched into slipspace.
ONI analysts have concluded that Jezh was the occupant of the lifepod - traditional Kig-Yar practice of placing the lifepod closest to the Ship Master's quarters make this a good estimate, but they also took into account Jezh's remarkable battle skill - some theorists posit that the Sangheili counter-attack was exactly what he hoped for, cutting him free of the dead weight of his compatriots and earning himself enough infamy to live off for the near future, until he could reestablish himself. ONI teams have scoured Kig-Yar space, looking for references to any suspicious activities that may lead them to Jezh and his current operations - the noticable lack of information is more suspicious than anything else. Indigo Team is currently deployed in the various remnant holdouts from the Sangheili's Interminable Reprisal campaign against the Kig-Yar Privateer Alliance, investigating reports of a significant privateer presence.