- For other uses, see Firestorm
The Firestorm Crisis was the name given to the war against CABAL and several actions leading up to it. It was so named for the Firestorm Taskforce, newly formed by General Cortez, and headed by a young commander pulled from Project Lazarus. The task force was active for several months, and was formed in January of 2031.
GDI, recovering from the last war, was facing problems. Their chief scientists and researchers had informed them that the Tiberium contamination was extremely prevalent in the atmosphere, and that steps needed to be taken to contain the problem or humanity would die off. At Nod's main Cairo headquarters, GDI forces had finally managed to dig through the ruins and locate the Tacitus, which they then prepared to transport on the Kodiak.
Meanwhile, Nod forces were in complete disarray. With the destruction of the Temple of Nod at the end of the war, CABAL had been overrun by GDI forces - the pieces of his core were now in GDI hands. This left Nod deaf and dumb to the outside world. Anton Slavik, using an improvised video communications link to speak with the other Nod generals, assumed control of the Brotherhood through the threat of force. His first objective was to retake CABAL.
|“|| We need order. CABAL. The Brotherhood needs CABAL. CABAL is order. CABAL is the hand of Kane.|
- Anton Slavik on CABAL.
Therefore, Slavik sent out a small team, equipped with a spy responsible for capturing and recovering the pieces of CABAL's core. Fortunately, all they had to do was to download the critical software of CABAL onto high density disks, as actually attempting to move CABAL's core would have been a monumental challenge necessitating a legion of Nod forces, and such forces were not yet available.
By stealing an amphibious APC, the Nod Spy managed to acquire the pieces of the core and return back to Slavik. At that point, Slavik installed CABAL onto the Brotherhood networks. From there, CABAL found another Core, and linked Nod's networks together.
Meanwhile, GDI forces had completed preparations for the Tacitus to be transported away from the Temple of Nod on board the Kodiak command craft. Unfortunately, it was caught in an Ion Storm, and crashed shortly thereafter, having been struck by a lightning bolt. EVA was able to track the general location where the Kodiak went down, and a team was sent to retrieve it. The team included a truck to transport the Tacitus if the Kodiak could not be repaired.
The team came across a group of Mutants who had managed to drive off the Nod forces in their immediate vicinity. The Mutants warned GDI of incoming Nod reinforcements. Despite these reinforcements, GDI managed to retrieve the Tacitus, though the Kodiak itself was a loss, having been broken into several pieces. The team loaded the Tacitus onto a truck and had it airlifted back to GDI command.
Meanwhile, CABAL, having been recently restored, sent out a young Nod commander on a mission. Equipped with a number of Toxin Soldiers, his objective was to drug a civilian village. Once drugged, the civilians could be ordered to go to the Genesis Pit and lure a significant amount of Tiberian wildlife after them, with which to destroy all GDI and civilian buildings in the area. Unfortunately, the drug had a side effect - shortly after being shot, a civilian's central nervous system would begin to break down - most civilians died as they were crossing the bridge to GDI territory having lured creatures behind them.
Dozens of Tiberium creatures ran out of the Genesis Pit, and proceeded to level the GDI base, the civilian structures and everything else in the area.
CABAL used this tactic at least once more - having either used additional civilians or even Nod soldiers to do the luring, he sent a horde of Tiberium creatures against a very similar GDI outpost. However this time, the leader of the Firestorm Taskforce was sent in to defend the base. Although CABAL used absolutely massive numbers of Tiberium creatures, the commander's skill was sufficient to both rescue the population and kill the Tiberium creatures.
At this point, CABAL changed gears. He realised that GDI was planning to ask Tratos to translate the Tacitus for them. Not wanting GDI to gain control of its secrets (including all sorts of information about Tiberium), CABAL ordered the assassination of Tratos. Through the use of Limpet drones, a small Nod force managed to break into the base, eventually destroying 6 Power Plants and shutting off the Firestorm Defences that GDI was using to protect Tratos. Before GDI could evacuate Tratos to a secure location, Nod forces shot and killed him.
The assassination of Tratos caused the Mutant population to become enraged: Why did we put up with these civilians, who mocked us? What was GDI doing to protect us? And why couldn't they defend Tratos? Soon, riots developed, and GDI was forced to send in a small force. Although the rioters were threatening to destroy vital food and water processors that could have plunged the region into famine, GDI did not want unnecessary casualties. Therefore, they sent in riot troops and mobile EMP devices. Eventually, riot troops managed to neutralise all 4 of the rioters' leaders, ending the revolt with a minimum of bloodshed. GDI breathed a sigh of relief.
Nod, in the meantime, had other plans. CABAL needed the Tacitus for his own plans. He ordered Nod's most promising commander to engage the main Mutant base in the area, and also to steal the Tacitus. At this point, CABAL believed that GDI had delivered the Tacitus to the Mutants so that Tratos could translate it. However, his intelligence was faulty, as GDI had already taken the Tacitus back to Dr. Boudreau's research facility; only a decoy was left behind.
Although the Nod commander was able to steal the fake Tacitus, and eliminate the Mutants in the face of heavy resistance that included X-66 Mammoth tanks, CABAL was not pleased. Nod, it seemed, was incapable of recovering the Tacitus. Apparently, CABAL would need GDI's help to regain it. However, in order to do that, CABAL needed to make his break from Nod.
|“|| Cortez, consider this the overture of my symphony. The culling is at hand, Human. The culling.... Behold my children. Listen to the screams, listen! That is the sound of your own extinction.|
- CABAL to General Cortez.
Immediately after, during an emergency meeting of the Inner Circle of Nod, General Slavik's motives about the recent attacks were questioned. Then, CABAL made his real motive known. He informed the assembled generals that he was the only leader of the Brotherhood, and he then ordered the Inner Circle to be assassinated, and all but Slavik were killed. He then deployed Cyborgs and Cyborg Reaper units, but was unable to capture all of the retreating Nod forces, who fled on the Montauk, Slavik's mobile command center.
Meanwhile, GDI forces had been unable to decode the Tacitus. Unfortunately, with Tiberium contamination approaching catastrophic levels, a radical solution was proposed: capturing CABAL, who had assisted Kane and Tratos in the original translation of the Tacitus. This unseemly mission was entrusted to the commander of the Firestorm Taskforce, who was able to capture the core despite extreme resistance from numerous Cyborgs, and several Cyborg Commandoes. Not only were his forces limited to low technology, but by this time CABAL had gained control over a large section of Nod, to the point where he had at least two 'feeder' bases which sent reinforcements to the area, as well as several secondary bases around his core. Considering CABAL's cyborg harvesting operations, it is likely that CABAL could have crushed the small force out of existence easily, but the AI had other plans.
Once CABAL had been brought on line, he then informed GDI that a second piece of the Tacitus was needed in order for translation to occur.
While GDI prepared a team, Nod forces fought with CABAL. Nod was being destroyed, in part because it was unable to co-ordinate its forces, and partly because most of the Nod soldiers captured were sent directly to the Cyborg Production Plants for cyborg conversion - these new units were then sent back into battle against the Brotherhood. A new AI was needed to replace CABAL, so Slavik pulled several damaged but battle hardened Stealth Tanks from the front lines, and instructed them to assist in the seizure of a GDI EVA unit from a moderate sized GDI base. While the Stealth Tanks managed to draw GDI's fire and attention away from their base and towards several civilian villages in the area, a subterranean APC deployed Engineers into the base, who managed to enter the Radar facility, copy the EVA unit, and transmit it to Nod before they were captured.
At the same time, GDI had readied a taskforce for the retrieval of the second piece of the Tacitus. They found it in South America, in an old temple. It was guarded by Cultists, who believed that Mutants were an abomination to mankind, and whose aversion to the Mutant Ghostalker made the mission considerably more difficult, as they were willing to make this aversion known to Ghostalker - through the use of force of arms. A prototype Juggernaut was also deployed in the area, and helped destroy the Cultist forces in the area. Upon reaching the Temple of the Tacitus, archaeologist Valdez recovered the second piece. The remaining members of the team were then airlifted out by GDI, but not before they killed Mortimer, the cult leader, and ended his threat for good.
Upon returning to CABAL's core and uploading the taskforce, GDI soldiers were ambushed by a small cyborg army. Doctor Gabriella Boudreau managed to escape, but the Tacitus was lost. In the confusion, CABAL managed to evacuate the Tacitus from that location, and to his true core. General Cortez promptly ordered CABAL's core to be destroyed, and with the assistance of a small Nod base in the region, it eventually was. Unfortunately, the Nod base was forced to evacuate before that occurred. GDI began to make preparations to deal once and for all with CABAL.
At the same time, Slavik demanded the destruction of CABAL's core at any cost. The newly reprogrammed EVA unit managed to pinpoint what it thought was Cabal's core, and Slavik ordered resources from throughout the Brotherhood diverted to CABAL's core in an effort to destroy it. Despite a difficult battle made more difficult by CABAL's Multi missiles and his Cyborg Commando, Nod forces reached CABAL's core, and managed to disable its defenses by capturing a relay station. Just as victory was within their grasp, it slipped away again: It turned out to be a decoy core, and CABAL unleashed a devastating multi-missile barrage against the Nod forces.
Meanwhile, CABAL had launched massive cyborg harvesting operations outside of the city of Trondheim. A lone commander was dispatched to warn the local civilians of this, and ask them to arm themselves and defend themselves against CABAL. He was successful, and eventually acquired reinforcements - enough to retake an abandoned GDI base in the region. Using the base to build up his forces, the commander managed to drive CABAL back, and raze his multiple bases, including the small cyborg production facility that CABAL was planning on using to turn most of the region's forces into Cyborgs. By this point, however, many civilians and Mutants had been either killed or turned into cyborgs.
At this point, CABAL was still mostly intact, and was using his forces mainly against Nod, although also against GDI. CABAL's true location was still a mystery, and his armies were vast. Generals Cortez and Slavik both came to the same conclusion: They had to ally with each other in order to have some chance at destroying CABAL.
The Alliance of GDI and NodEdit
|“|| Yes... a cease fire. A joint operation to neutralize the genie you people let out of the bottle. May god have mercy on us all.|
- General Cortez to Anton Slavik.
In a teleconference, Slavik and Cortez agreed to stop fighting each other, and to use all their resources to fight CABAL. All Nod and GDI intelligence data was analysed, and together it was determined where CABAL's core was. However, it was far too heavily defended to be attacked - in fact, it was not yet exposed to a sizable attack. A joint operation, using both GDI and Nod resources was planned that would strip the defenses from CABAL's core: GDI would go after CABAL's main cyborg production plant with an infected cyborg, thus incapacitating his army, while Nod would eliminate all of Cabal's harvesters, refineries, and silos, preventing him from replenishing the forces that had been incapacitated.
Nod forces, using a Fist of Nod, managed to produce a large amount of forces and eventually destroy his Harvesters, Refineries, and Silos, thanks in part to the assistance of GDI reinforcements. They were also able to protect a civilian village that had come under CABAL's attack to prevent him from turning them into Cyborgs. It was a highly ironic twist that Nod was actually defending civilians. While they did so, Nod encountered several Tiberium waste facility structures. Apparently, CABAL had been trying to produce chemical missiles.
Meanwhile, GDI, having acquired and reprogrammed the Cyborg Huey, infiltrated one of CABAL's main transmission and computing centers, planting the virus. The effects were immediate, as a number of cyborgs immediately switched sides, although the vast majority still remained loyal to CABAL. Shortly after implanting the virus, GDI forces destroyed the communications array so that CABAL would have difficulty recontacting the cyborgs and attempting to return them to his control. Backed by considerable GDI reinforcements that included Disruptors, the Firestorm Taskforce razed what remained of the cyborg production plant to the ground.
|“|| You dare to attack ME? How pathetic!|
With CABAL's main support facilities destroyed, and his other facilities rendered helpless by the virus, GDI and Nod commanders felt the time was right for an attack on CABAL's core. Although CABAL responded by numerous multi-missiles, dozens of cyborgs, and even another Cyborg Commando, GDI and Nod forces were able to hold their ground. But there was only one hope of victory: Capturing the 6 control stations that had the codes to CABAL's Firestorm defenses - unlike Hammerfest, CABAL had managed to generate a truly invulnerable base that could not be attacked without those codes. But, like GDI before him, CABAL had underestimated the resourcefulness of his opponents - acting in concert, GDI and Nod retrieved the codes and turned off CABAL's Firestorm Defences.
During this time, GDI forces managed to re-establish contact with the Ion Cannon satellites, although not with the orbital command stations. Exact information regarding the details of the Ion Cannon are still classified, but it is believed that this is due to the Ion Cannon satellites' being in a lower orbit, or that the Ion Cannon's ion effect interfered with the Ion Storm, allowing communications through.
CABAL then called on his last weapon, the mighty Core Defender, a gigantic tower of laser power that could eliminate infantry in a single hit, and vehicles in a few seconds. Although it was extremely powerful, its processors didn't know how to prioritise a massive army of dozens of enemy vehicles, and it was destroyed. It also had a complete lack of anti-air weaponry and often received massive damage from air attacks.
GDI forces managed to raze CABAL's core before Nod, and claimed the Tacitus as their prize. Meanwhile, Nod forces withdrew from the sector, having accomplished their goal. They were not strong enough to dare putting the bite on GDI.
With the Tacitus in hand, GDI forces found that the Tacitus was easy to decode - if one were to possess all of the pieces, and it was all revealed. GDI believed that this discovery might make it possible to reverse Tiberium contamination, although the data will take some time to be fully analysed. They also regained contact with the GDSS Philadelphia and the other orbital command stations.
For Nod, the great victory over CABAL buoyed their spirits. Despite the loss of troops and the Inner Circle, Nod had managed to rebuild itself and hold its own against CABAL. Slavik led a massive rally in a huge hall to hundreds of Nod brothers within the new Temple of Nod.
Meanwhile, Kane was held in stasis in a CABAL central processing core. The sophisticated computer systems that uplinked Kane to CABAL had been hacked by the latter, who then fought for dominance with Kane's consciousness. Eventually the two personalities merged. The last known information about the Firestorm Crisis are the simple words spoken by CABAL/Kane:
|“|| Our directives must be reassessed.|
After the Crisis, silence will once again reign until LEGION, the successor to CABAL, will be awakened, a new War will erupt, involving a new alien race known as the Scrin, and after that, in 2052, Nod takes back the Tacitus with the help of the Marked of Kane, a cyborg army that is loyal to Kane, and to him only.