- Former Rank:
- Supreme Commander of the Fleet of Particular Justice
- Swords of Sanghelios
- 7ft 10in (238.6cm)
- 319lbs (144.7kg)
- Eye Color:
- December, 10, 2485
‘Vadam generally wears the traditional armor style worn by the Arbiters who served before him. More recently he dons a ceremonial battledress as both a tribute to the previous Arbiters and as a symbol of transition towards his vision of a united Sanghelios. The Energy Sword is his weapon of choice, and he occasionally uses his personal blade which carries the sobriquet “Prophets’ Bane”.
The Arbiter, known previously as
The Halo Conflict
In chasing the rogue human ship (UNSC Pillar of Autumn), ‘Vadamee’s forces discovered Alpha Halo, one of the Forerunners’ Sacred Rings the Covenant had sought since their founding thousands of years earlier. This represented the culmination of the Covenant’s core goal: the activation of Halo, an event that allegedly offered divinity to all members of the Covenant.
However, due to a political conflict with the Prophet of Stewardship, ‘Vadamee’s efforts to contain both the human threat and the Flood outbreak were subverted. This allowed an enemy known as the Master Chief to destroy the ring. The resulting catastrophe, as well as the capture of his flagship Ascendant Justice, put him at odds with Covenant leadership—specifically the San’Shyuum Hierarch known as the High Prophet of Truth. The Hierarch forced on him the shamed mantle of the Arbiter and the task of locating the Sacred Icon -- an Activation Index. Only with the holy relic could the Hierarchs ignite the newly discovered Delta Halo installation and return ‘Vadamee former glory.
Upon acquiring the Sacred Icon, the Arbiter was struck down by the Prophets’ Jiralhanae guards. This act revealed the Prophet’s secret betrayal of the Sangheili and initiated the Great Schism—a civil war that tore their longstanding alliance apart. Along with his encounter with a Flood Gravemind, the Arbiter uncovered the disturbing truth of Halo. It wasn’t a sublimation device capable of imbuing divinity on the faithful, as the Prophets had instructed, but rather a devastating weapon which, if activated, would destroy all sentient life in the galaxy. Working with the Master Chief (the very same human who destroyed the first ring), the Arbiter prevented the Covenant from activating Delta Halo. He then followed his newfound allies back to Earth to fight the last vestige of the Covenant.
Breaking the Covenant
Allied with a handful of rebel Sangheili who had survived the Great Schism, the Arbiter and the Master Chief pursued the Covenant to the massive Forerunner installation known as the Ark. It was here that he assassinated the Prophet of Truth, ushering an end to the Covenant and the threat of Halo. Despite this victory, his species remained fragmented in the months that followed. Those allied with him against the Covenant stayed in his service, as did his family state. Others found political and ideological solidarity in him while the Sangheili’s entire religious framework went through the process of redefinition. However, some Sangheili still held to the strictures and theology of the Covenant religion, although they did not deny the San’Shyuum’s deception or the many failings of the original Covenant. Others were indifferent to the Covenant religion and faith as a whole, but remained staunchly belligerent toward any peace with the humans, still holding to their old ways and the hostilities of previous years.
Currently, Arbiter Thel ‘Vadam is considered the formal, interim leader of the Sangheili (Elites), and specifically his species’ homeworld called Sanghelios. His role to end their war with the humans created a traumatic dichotomy within the Sangheili. Some support his authority and leadership, gathering under the banner “Swords of Sanghelios”. Others, however, find it heretical on historically-religious grounds, and yet others find cross-species alignment with the humans politically naive. Even further, many Sangheili regard ‘Vadam as a “false Arbiter.” They claim that since he did not ultimately sacrifice himself in battle, he represents the ultimate heresy against both the Great Journey and Sanghelios itself. They view him as a coward that must be extinguished for the Sangheili to truly ascend.
- Halo 2 Anniversary
- Halo 3
- Halo: The Master Chief Collection
- Halo: The Cole Protocol
- Halo: Glasslands
- Halo: The Thursday War
- Halo: Escalation
- Halo: Legends
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