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Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain cassette transcripts

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In Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, the player can access cassette tapes, either at hand or by collecting them, that will give expanded details on events and character backgrounds, as well as give some information on various missions. Below is a transcript of all of the cassette tapes in the game (not counting those with music stored on them).

Mission briefings

To listen to the mission briefings, simply press the PlayStationTriangle / Y-button either when selecting a main mission or during the mission on the iDroid. Note that neither "Prologue: Awakening" nor "Truth: The Man Who Sold the World" have mission briefings due to the unique nature of those missions.

Phantom Limbs

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: Boss, your mission is to rescue the target, Kazuhira Miller. The man you called your partner nine years ago. Miller was training guerrilla rebels near the Pakistani border when he was captured by the Soviets. He's currently being held at Da Ghwandai Khar. Rescue Miller from the Soviet troops and extract him by chopper. It's time to prove to the world you're the real Big Boss.

Diamond Dogs

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: Boss, there's something I want to talk about. It concerns the running of Mother Base. This base belongs to you now. Make Diamond Dogs the force it deserves to be. Like any organization, we need good people, and we need to make good use of their talents. Miller asked me to lay that out for you. Come meet with me. Miller could do with some rest.

A Hero's Way

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Farming villages in Southern Wakhan have been subject to a strategic bombing campaign the past several weeks. The damage is spreading. It's part of the Soviets' scorched earth operation aimed at wiping out the guerillas. The target this time is the commander of a Spetsnaz detachment. He's been key to the operation's success. People say this guy's responsible for annihilating the Mujahideen at Da Smasei Laman - the Hamid fighters - overnight. He's a tough, experienced commander. Don't underestimate him. The order from our client in the West is to shoot on sight - they want him out of the picture for good. Sorry, Boss. This one's purely business. Wet work - a hit on a commanding officer of the Soviet military. Nothing personal. We're only doing this because it gets us one step closer to our goal.

C2W

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, information warfare is more than just intel gathering. It also means disrupting enemy communications. Your mission is to punch a hole in the comms network between the Soviet outposts. That'll cut off their means to call in reinforcements. Technically, we were given this mission by a Western-backed Arab organization supporting the guerillas, but it'll also give us a leg up in the future. Take a look at the location of the eastern communications post on your iDroid. Head there and destroy its comms equipment. He who controls information, controls operations. Just look at Cipher. Good luck, Boss.

Over the Fence

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: If we're going to expand Mother Base, we need more manpower. Not just for combat roles, either - R&D, the Support Unit, Intel... Each demands a different set of skills. If we want to achieve what we've set out to do, Diamond Dogs has got to get stronger. There's a Soviet engineer I want to have join us. He was the one who built your prosthesis. With him on our side, who knows what sort of enhancements he'll come up for it. He tried to defect but didn't make it, and now he's being held prisoner at Wakh Sind Barracks. Find this engineer and get him out. Having him on our R&D Team will go a long way to helping Diamond Dogs grow.

Where Do the Bees Sleep?

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Part of the Mujahideen's arsenal against the Soviets is secretly supplied by the CIA, but the war continues to drag on with neither side gaining the advantage. Now, though, the CIA have started supplying the guerillas with a new weapon. We don't know the details, but rumor has it that it could turn the tide of the war. The Soviets have heard of it, and it has them spooked. Now, the "Hamid" Mujahideen were issued this weapon, but then they were wiped out in no time. There's no trace of fighting at their fort, and all their supplies are just sitting there. Naturally, that screams biochemical weapons, but the Soviets deny using anything that would violate the BWC. Whatever happened, the Soviets have invaded the area and are searching for this Western weapon tech. This is the CIA's worst nightmare. If that weapon falls into Soviet hands, it'll drastically rewrite the history that's being made here. But "the Company" can't be seen entering the area. That's where we come in. Boss, head to the fort of Da Smasei Laman, find the weapon before the Soviets, and bring it back to base - fast. The new weapon is code-named "Honey Bee." To the U.S., it's a vital military secret.

Red Brass

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: This contract comes from a rebel guerrilla faction in Afghanistan. They've gotten wind of a rare meeting between three Soviet commanders running key units in the region. The location is Wialo village. This information comes from a mole planted within the Soviets' Arab support organization. The guerrillas see this as a one-of-a-kind chance to weaken the Soviet forces in one stroke. But if they act themselves, it'll reveal the existence of their mole. That's why this job falls to us. The request is simple. "Eliminate the three pigs, by any means." If these commanders are as good as they say, it'd be a shame to kill 'em... But I leave that decision to you.

Occupation Forces

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Da Smasei Laman was full of Mujahideen - the Hamid fighters - then suddenly, they disappeared overnight and the Soviets moved right in. I guess the old fort is still in good enough shape that the Soviets want to use it as is. This means that the battalion commander stationed at Sakhra Ee Village - a lieutenant colonel - is moving his operations room to the fort. Word is he's an excellent leader. With him stationed at Smasei fort, the Soviet forces in the area will operate all the better. And according to the client's information, he'll be bringing a tank unit to the fort as well. We don't know the redeployment date or the route they'll take, but there must be some planning documentation where the colonel is. You have two objectives: "Eliminate" the colonel, and stop the tank deployment. Counting on you, Boss.

Backup, Back Down

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, the rebel Guerrillas are launching an offensive against the Soviets. Our job is to eliminate as much as we can of the Soviets' mechanized unit that will come in as reinforcements. The more vehicles you can take out, the higher our pay will be. But the mission's a failure if you can't manage to eliminate a single one. A race against the clock, with plenty of targets to choose from. Show 'em your best stuff, Boss.

Angel with Broken Wings

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The objective is to rescue and extract a Mujahid captured by the Soviets. He's being held in the ruins of Lamar Khaate Palace. As are a lot of POWs. Civilians, guerillas, suspected guerillas... The Soviets turned the place into their own black site. However, we've only been asked to rescue one of the prisoners. He's known as Malak - "angel" - to his fellow Mujahideen. The client is none other than his father. Or rather, this was his father's dying wish.

Cloaked in Silence

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: The sniper known as "Quiet" is lurking in the Afghan wilderness. This Quiet has performed a string of hits on Soviet officers. The attacks always occur in the same area. But sweeps of the area turn up no traces whatsoever. They've even posted guards, but they never spot a thing. And then before you know it, another body's lying on the ground. You ever heard of someone who operates like that? Miller has a theory... That this sniper's a hitman for Cipher. He thinks it's time we silence Quiet for good. But I'm against the lethal treatment. I say we bring the sniper back alive and break that silence. Because even if this Quiet doesn't say a word, there's still plenty we can learn.

Hellbound

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, we need to help Emmerich defect from the East. The target is the scientist we knew as Huey. He's a suspect in enabling Cipher's attack on us nine years ago. Let's see that Emmerich gets his wish, Boss. Take him out of Soviet territory and back here to Mother Base. "Dr. Emmerich..." I can't wait for us to sit down and catch up.

Pitch Dark

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, this contract comes out of Angola. That's right - Central Africa, where Emmerich claimed they were working on "a weapon to surpass Metal Gear." There's been a massive oil spill from Mfinda Oilfield. It's flowing into the river and contaminating the water supply. An Environmental NGO has asked us to stop the spill... by destroying the facility. Environmental activism isn't exactly our line of work, but it's not that simple either. The group operating the oil facility and causing the spill is the rebel group UNITA . And word has it that UNITA is getting supplied with U.S. military weapons. That sounds to me like Cipher's pulling their strings. Boss, it's time to give Cipher a little surprise.

Lingua Franca

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: There's a violent power struggle going on within the contract forces of Africa - the PF that ran security for the Mfinda Oilfield. Most of their key people are Afrikaners, but naturally for a South African organization, some of its founders are British. Details are sketchy, but apparently the Afrikaners are holding the British personnel for interrogation near Kiziba Camp. We've been asked to rescue one of them, a man known as the "viscount." We don't know the viscount's exact location, but he doesn't speak the Afrikaner's language, Afrikaans. They'll need an interpreter who speaks English in order to interrogate him. Meaning if we tail the interpreter, he'll lead us straight to the target. By the way, the contract specifies that it's alright to ignore the other British prisoners... But the final decision is yours, Boss.

Footprints of Phantoms

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, this contract comes from the MPLA - the People's Movement for the Liberation of Angola. Apparently, "new, Western bipedal weapons" have been deployed to Ditadi Abandoned Village and are a threat to their troops. Our job is to eliminate them. The "bipedal weapons" they're talking about are of course Walker Gears. As I've previously reported, they're already in active service with PFs in Africa. But don't you find it strange? A PF employed by the West obtains a prototype developed by the Soviets... Yet the Russia-backed MPLA don't know the details. Eastern weapons technology developed in Afghanistan is being supplied to the West in Africa. Only Cipher would be capable of making something like that happen. So Boss, eliminate the Walker Gears at Ditadi Abandoned Village just like the MPLA have asked. Once you do, the PF will need to contact its supplier. Giving us a chance to close in on that supplier - Cipher.

Traitor's Caravan

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, about those Walker Gears deployed by the CFA... It appears that it's not just the CFA, PFs all along the Angola-Zaire border are also getting equipped with them. The bipedal technology was developed by the Soviets... but Cipher's the one supplying it to the PFs. The question is why? What's in it for them? The answer may lie in the "compensation" being traded to Cipher by the PFs. Many outfits operating in Africa get locally-mined resources as spoils of war. Diamonds, nuggets of gold, and rare metals. According to the Intel Team, there's a PF convoy that regularly transports the goods. Escorted by armored vehicles, no less. Pretty heavy security for crossing the Angolan savannah. I can't imagine Cipher would be so interested in minerals alone. Those convoys have to be transporting something else. Something that holds the key to Cipher's plans. Boss, I want you to extract the truck, cargo and all, from the PF convoy. Let's find out what Cipher's real goals are.

Rescue the Intel Agents

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, this is an emergency. We had two Intel Team agents undercover at the PF Contract Forces of Africa. The CFA have captured them both. They don't have long to live. Since our mission at the oilfield, we're no longer just business rivals to the CFA - we're enemies, and they want revenge. Our men will be killed the moment the interrogation's complete. And then it won't just be a matter of two dead soldiers. Their execution will be a catalyst, sparking resentment within Diamond Dogs against the CFA. Our men will push us to retaliate. Then things'll cease to be about business. We'll be starting a personal war. That's not what we set out to do. The two men are being held in Kiziba Camp. Hurry, Boss. They're counting on you. Don't let 'em down.

Blood Runs Deep

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: There are six targets. They're soldiers. The contract is to kill them. They used to be with a platoon of Mbele rebels, but then the Buta authorities captured them. They're at two locations - the Bampeve plantation and the Kungenga mine. The client is none other than the general they served under. He wants them dead to keep them from talking. A commander murdering his former men. That's what this boils down to.

On the Trail

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: We have a new assignment - eliminate the commander of Rogue Coyote, one of the PFs operating in Africa. The target is simply "the Major" to his men. That's his rank from his army days. Instead of your typical boots-on-the-ground work, he's more of a job broker and a recruiter. And apparently, he also runs a little espionage operation on the side... Which could explain why he's picked up a long list of enemies. I don't like getting involved in a PF pissing match any more than you go. There's another reason we took this job. Recently this guy's been talking about dealing in nuclear arms. Think back to the shipment that Cipher was having ZRS transport. If we put the squeeze on this "Major," We might come out of it with some new intel on Cipher.

Voices

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, the client this time is a child. One of the children you rescued from that mine. He wants us to save the boy who was their leader. His name is Shabani, and he was the oldest among them. Several days before you went into the mine, he was taken away to Nzo ya Badiabulu. Our search turned up a place the locals call by that name. Ngumba Industrial Zone. Nearby residents are terrified of it. They say "the Devil" lives there. And that anyone who sets foot in it never returns. This industrial zone has long been abandoned, but it seems it was sold off a few years back to a certain corporation. SANR. And now the perimeter is tightly guarded by a PF. The reason is unclear. The same goes for why Shabani was taken away. But something is obviously going on there. Those kids from the mine really looked up to Shabani. The "client" has given us the last of their diamonds in return. Go get Shabani out of there, Boss. Whatever Cipher's up to in the region, Shabani might just be our best lead.

The War Economy

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The contract is to eliminate a high-ranking CFA official. CFA doesn't just hire UNITA soldiers as mercenaries. They're also supplying UNITA with weapons. It just smacks of Western nations manipulating them against the Socialist MPLA. Naturally, the MPLA's not happy with the situation, and wants us to put a stop to it. Your standard issue East-West proxy war... except, it appears our target is the man in charge of how many weapons get supplied to UNITA. Apparently his MO is to keep the civil war going as long as possible, so CFA can keep making a profit. Bad for business if UNITA wins too soon. So they sit back and suck the people dry. Parasites of war. Our intel suggests the target rarely ventures outside of Nova Braga airport, but rumor has it that a Western arms dealer is headed there soon for an inspection. That could be your chance to eliminate him from a distance. We also heard he plans to leave the country following the inspection. This may be our only opportunity to take him out.

Retake the Platform

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, we got an emergency here. Mother Base has come under attack, and several of our platforms are in enemy hands. The enemy is some rival outfit copying our MO. They've taken some of our staff hostage - we can't make a move without endangering them. But if we don't do something, they'll try to take off with our men. That would mean losing some of our finest manpower. There's only one option. Infiltrate without being spotted, eliminate their commander, and take back our platforms. Boss... you're the only one who can do this.

The White Mamba

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, the CFA soldiers deployed to Bwala ya Masa have been annihilated. There are no signs of combat, nor any endemic disease. All the adults just... disappeared. Only children were left. All those kids were ever taught was how to fight, and now they're free from the control of adults. They've become a regular bunch of marauders, raiding nearby villages, beating people, and destroying property. Our contract comes from the government. We're to locate this "militia," these kids... and kill them. But I suggest we do this the Diamond Dogs way. The government wants to see these raids stop? We can see to that. But not by killing kids. We're going to disarm, demobilize, and reintegrate them. A DDR operation. To begin with, extract their commander to Mother Base. Once they lose that kid, the one they call "White Mamba," the rest of the group will fall apart by itself.

Close Contact

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Two engineers are being held in the observation post southwest of Ngumba Industrial Zone. Boss, your mission is to rescue them. The targets are civilians - one male, one female. They were dispatched to the area by an international health organization, but disappeared shortly after. Extract the two targets, and help them escape the country.

Aim True, Ye Vengeful

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, this contract comes from the Mbele rebel militants. That's right - that "general's" fighters. Recently, one of their child soldier platoons staged an insurrection and split from the main group. Thing is, they took a hostage with them - the general's brother, his No. 2. The contract is to extract both that prisoner and the leader of the renegade platoon. The message reads, "I love my brother - you must bring him back to me alive." It also says this about the leader of the child soldiers: He is an excellent soldier. I want to persuade him to rejoin the ranks of the righteous. Sounds a little too forgiving for the man who ordered those kids dead at the mine. I wonder... I wonder what kind of "persuasion" the general has in store. With that in mind, here are your objectives: First, rescue and return the general's No. 2, as requested. Second, extract the renegade leader and we'll keep him at Mother Base. In other words, extract both targets out of the region. Good luck, Boss.

Hunting Down

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, there's a target on the run somewhere on the savannah. Your job is to find and eliminate him. He's a logistics officer for the PF known as Rogue Coyote. On the side, however, he colluded with the Buta regime, abducting people from Mbele villages and "supplying" them as slave labor. That's right - he's a human trafficker. His victims ended up all over the place - brothels, black-market organ trade, diamond mines... And he was the one who sent Shabani and the other kids to the Devil's House. But then an Mbele rebel group finally added him to their hit list. The target decided it was time to quit, and now he's trying to leave the country. If he makes it back to his country, he'll be no more than a civilian and he'll avoid facing a court-martial. Like so many other war-biz junkies... I'll bet he plans on enjoying a new life financed with his blood money. The client's order is to take him out. How you go about that is up to you, Boss.

Root Cause

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss. The Intel Team's hard at work investigating the cause of that illness spreading through Mother Base. Problem is, a bunch of our agents in the field are still MIA. Progress has been slow... until now. We just got a distress call from one of them. He said he's got intel on the origin of the disease. But...the PF in the area got to him before we did. There's been no further contact from him, but we know he's being held at the guard post on the western end of the mine. There's still a good chance he's alive. We can't afford to let him die. Right now, he's the only link we have to the root cause of the epidemic. Get our man back, Boss.

Code Talker

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, you need to make contact with the Code Talker, the old man who's supposed to know what's behind this infection. The Intel Team member you extracted was able to pinpoint his location. A forest that stretches across the Angola-Zaire border. The locals call it Lufwa Valley - the Valley of the Lost. The target's in a mansion deep in this valley. A PF is deployed there, but we've also spotted an unidentified group operating in the area. If Cipher developed this pathogen, there's a good chance our target played a central role in that process. But is this their "weapon to surpass Metal Gear...?" Will the pathogen, or its cure, lead to Cipher? This guy is the key to everything. Boss, make contact with Code Talker, and extract him if you see fit. We can't afford to lose any more men. We have to stop it.

Metallic Archaea

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, you OK?! There's an unusual mist in front of your chopper. It could be the same one as before... Cipher is trying to eliminate Code Talker. But we can't save the infected without him. Boss, whatever you do, bring Code Talker back alive.

Skull Face

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Thanks to Code Talker, we've managed to put a stop to any new vocal cord parasite infections. We couldn't save those already symptomatic, but everyone who survived has been released from the Quarantine Platform. Skull Face will pay for this. Boss. Emmerich confessed. Skull Face's endgame is to activate the bipedal walking tank Sahelanthropus and deploy it into live combat in Afghanistan. That's why he moved into the Soviet research facility they call OKB Zero. If his plan comes to fruition, there'll be no stopping the ripple effect worldwide. Find a way to make contact with Skull Face before that happens. Then learn what you can from him, and put a stop to his plan. We'll have our fun with him later. This is it, Boss. Diamond Dogs is strong enough now to face him head to head. It won't be like 9 years ago. Make your way to OKB Zero.

Sahelanthropus

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Sahelanthropus is on the move. The instruments on the support chopper are all malfunctioning... and Eli's acting strangely for some reason. Something's not right. Boss, for now just get away from that thing. Hurry!

To Know Too Much

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The agent that the CIA had working for them inside OKB Zero has gone missing. We've been given the job of finding and extracting him. The target learned of XOF's plans to use the vocal cord parasites, and had hidden himself with the CIA's mujahideen allies. But following Skull Face's death, the Soviets retook OKB Zero and all contact with the target was lost. He may have tried to go back to OKB Zero, but even Langley isn't sure what's going on. After all, they've never even learned of Skull Face's plan. That's probably what they want to get out of the man once he's extracted. But we can't allow Langley to learn of the existence of the vocal cord parasites. That's why I want you to bring the target out, Boss. Once we have him, we can report him dead and keep him on base. All contact with Langley is being conducted through a cut-out. Our reputation should remain intact. All you have to do is get the job done - just like always.

Cursed Legacy

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, research materials have been stolen from Code Talker's mansion. The materials were packed into two containers and hidden in the jungle southwest of the mansion. You have to recover those containers. The pick-up crew coming for those documents is none other than XOF. That's right - they're still active even after Skull Face's death. Now that he's no longer in charge, their original chain of command has been restored. Meaning if XOF gets those documents, Code Talker's research ends up in Cipher's hands. According to Code Talker, the research papers account for over 50 years of study. The problem is the vocal cord parasites. If the papers documenting that research fall into Cipher's hands, they'll take another long, hard look at them. The "ethnic cleaners" we thought were history will become a reality. America - Zero - will have a weapon far more powerful than any nuke. Even worse, if this knowledge were to leak... The world - humanity - can't be entrusted with this kind of power! Recover the containers before the enemy extraction choppers arrive.

Extraordinary

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: Boss, we need you to get back a film canister one of our informants hid in the field. He was working under my orders to investigate the "extraordinaries" that showed up in Cyprus. The Man on Fire and the floating boy that keep showing up where they're not welcome. Apparently they were the subjects of some top-secret research conducted by the Kremlin. Unfortunately, that meant our informant drew the attention of the KGB's Directorate S, and they took him out before we could make contact. The good news is he placed a report in a film canister and hid it somewhere in Spugmay Keep. Just before he died, he transmitted VI of the hiding place to us, but the data was cut off partway though. The image is far from clear, but it might provide the clue you need. We'll be analyzing the data further to try to clear it up. For now, get to Spugmay Keep. The KGB have already dispatched a Spetsnaz squad to retrieve that film canister and cover the whole thing up. Boss, there's no time to waste. Head to Spugmay Keep and use the VI as a clue and retrieve the target. Why was Sahelanthropus mobile...? How were the Man on Fire and that kid connected to Skull Face's plan...? If we can just get that report, we can blow it all wide open. Then we can shake off the last remnants of Skull Face, the phantoms he left behind.

Proxy War Without End

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The CFA are gearing up for a large-scale attack against Angola's MPLA government. They're assembling an armored column to the north of Nova Braga Airport, and will be ready to move soon. We've been contracted by the MPLA to put a stop to them. But the civil war will keep burning on whether we accept this job or not. Another East-West proxy war, with the communist MPLA on one side and the capitalist-funded CFA on the other. An endless seesaw of blood and violence played out in the hands of the superpowers. I had my doubts at first, but I think we should take this job. Skull Face is gone, but Cipher still remains. Competition with rival PFs will only get more intense. For us to survive, we need to expand our organization, and get strong enough that no one can threaten us. So our only option is to fight, and grow, and fight, and grow.

Shining Lights, Even in Death

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, we have another outbreak of the vocal cord parasite, inside the Quarantine Platform's Laboratory. Several men are dead. It began after we discovered that radiation leak in the facility's Research Block. I dispatched the Security Team to seal off the source and move the researchers to the Containment Block next to it. That's when they discovered the outbreak. I immediately sealed the Laboratory and sent a MOPP3 rescue team, but they haven't returned and comms are dead. We have no idea why the parasite has shown up again. I thought we took care of it. I'd like to get any asymptomatic personel out of there, but we can't tell who's infectious and who's not. We need more information, like how to tell the two apart. Find out what's going on, Boss.

A Quiet Exit

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: Boss, we've located Quiet in Afghanistan. She's been captured by the Soviets and taken to Lamar Khaate Palace. But why she did she leave Mother Base and return to Afghanistan...? And why hand herself over to the Soviets? I just can't imagine what she was thinking. Right after her recent actions finally earned her more fans around here, too... Boss, you need to go and get her out. You're not just gonna leave her in their hands, are you?

Mission intel commentary

To listen to the intel commentary, simply press PlayStationSquare / X to play them on the appropriate images. Note that the missions "Prologue" and "Truth: The Man Who Sold the World", as well as "Diamond Dogs", "Cloaked in Silence", and "Metallic Archaea" (both regular and Extreme versions of the latter two) lack a mission intel commentary option altogether, as the former missions took place before the player got the iDroid, and the latter missions being a training simulation for Mother Base and mission-length boss fights for Quiet and the Armored Skulls, respectively. Also, not all of the intel files have intel commentary.

Phantom Limbs (A photo of Miller)

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Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: The target is Kazuhira Miller, your old partner. He was captured by the Soviets, and is being held at Ghwandai. He's gonna look a lot worse than that photo, but I'm sure you'll know him when you see him.

A Hero's Way (A photo of the target)

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Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the target. Take him out.

C2W (A photo of the base)

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Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That facility is the backbone of the Soviets' local communication network. It's situated against a rugged mountain, and protected by heavy firepower and tight security.

Over the Fence (A photo of the target)

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Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The target's an engineer. A mechanical engineer, to be precise. That prosthesis you're using is apparently one of his creations. So you know... first-hand just how good this guy is. It'd be a damn waste to let them kill him. Get him out of there in one piece. Though I gotta say, what was a mechanics whiz doing in a place like that? It's just as we suspected - they must be developing some kind of weapon in that region...

Where do the Bees Sleep? (A photo of the Honey Bee)

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Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the Honey Bee's storage case. We don't know the specifics, but a homing weapon, in a case that size? It's probably a portable missile. Recently, the Soviets have lost multiple gunships in the area.

Red Brass (A photo of the base)

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Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: This is where the meeting is supposed to take place. It's a good spot for security, lots of visibility. You'll have to be extra cautious on your approach.

Red Brass (A photo of the Shago commander)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: This is the commander of the platoon stationed at the Shago village. He's feared by the guerrillas for his fierce on-the-fly tactics.

Red Brass (A photo of the Wialo commander)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: He's the company commander whose troops operate out of Wialo village. This meeting was his idea.

Red Brass (A photo of the Wakh Sind Barrack platoon commander)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The Wakh Sind Barrack platoon commander. Watch yourself, his bodyguards will have the area secured.

Occupation Forces (A photo of the lieutenant colonel)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: This colonel oversees several outposts in the area, and now he's got his sights set on Smasei Fort. All reports say he's a formidable soldier. Be careful.

Back Up, Back Down (A photo of one of the Soviet vehicles)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: A Soviet armored vehicle. Highly mobile, and it can pack a punch too. Those are our targets. Eliminate as many as you can.

Angel with Broken Wings (A photo of the target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the target. He was the youngest in his squad. The others called him Malak, or "Angel." The Soviets captured Malak and took him to the ruins of Lamar Khaate Palace. His family was subsequently killed in an airstrike on his village. The Soviets' scorched earth operation wiped it off the map. The client this time is Malak's father... Well, a survivor from the village acting on his behalf. The father's dying words were, "Before you take revenge for our people... Save my son."

Hellbound (A photo of the target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the target, Emmerich. He's a scientist, an expert in robotics - bipedal locomotion in particular. We suspect he was involved with Cipher's attack on Mother Base nine years ago. If he was, then it's all his fault we... Boss, Emmerich wants to defect from the East. Bring him back to Mother Base. It's time we got some answers.

Pitch Dark (a photo of the oilfield)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The relay station for Mfinda Oilfield. They've cranked up the old machinery despite it being too decrepit to run. That led to the oil spill, which is contaminating the river. To stop the spill, we need to shut down the oil transfer pump and destroy the water separator tank.

Pitch Dark (a photo of the target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's one of the targets, the oily water separator tank. It filters the impurities from the oil making it the backbone of the whole facility. Destroy this, and they'll have no way to start the facility up again. It's built pretty tough, so you'll need explosives to take it out. However, the tank is highly pressurized. There'll be quite a bang when it goes up. Make sure you keep your distance.

Pitch Dark (blueprints of the facility)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's one of the targets, the oil transfer pump. We don't have a precise location. You'll have to search for it on-site. Stop this pump, and you stop the flow of oil. There should be an emergency stop button next to the pump. All you have to do... ...is hit it.

Lingua Franca (a photo of the interpreter)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The interpreter will be present for the rescue target's interrogation. He's a CFA merc too, but he serves as a language specialist. His job is English-Afrikaans simultaneous interpreting. Tail him to find out where they're keeping the target.

Lingua Franca (a photo of the target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the rescue target, known as the "Viscount..." But don't let that fool you - he's no aristocrat. He started out in the British Army's Scots Guards, moved on to the SAS, then became a mercenary and helped create the CFA. How he earned the moniker is unclear.

Footprints of Phantoms (a photo of the target)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: That's the target, a Walker Gear. A bipedal weapon system developed by the Soviet Army. They're designed to be quick even on off-road terrain. Don't take this one lightly.

Traitor's Caravan (a photo of the truck)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the truck being used in the convoy. Extract that truck with the cargo still in it. You can also drive it out yourself if you prefer. But our objective is to study that cargo. Make sure you bring it back in one piece.

Traitor's Caravan (a photo of the armored vehicle escort)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: That's the armored vehicle escort. It has some serious firepower. Make sure your gear's up to scratch before you duel with that thing.

Rescue the Intel Team Agents (a photo of the first target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's our Intel Team agent. He's being held in Kiziba Camp. Get him out of there. Recently, the CFA have suddenly pulled their men out of Masa village. Strategically, it's as if they lost their minds. I sent him in to find out what their reason was.

Rescue the Intel Team Agents (a photo of the second target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That guy on the run is from our Intel Team. You've got to save him. He last made contact from the forest to the north of the encampment. There's a rumor that locally-hired CFA soldiers are dying around there. And I don't mean in firefights. Our man was assigned to find out what's going on.

Rescue the Intel Team Agents (a photo of an infected CFA soldier)

This intel is not available at the start of the mission. It requires that the player save the Intel Team prisoner in the forest beforehand to get it.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Our man brought that photo back with him. It was taken at Masa village. What you see there is a CFA soldier.

The information below is omitted by repeated listenings to the intel file after first hearing it.

And I'm sure you recognize those symptoms. We're hearing that this is cropping up among the CFA ranks a lot lately. Especially among local hires sent to the Masa Village area. The thing is, they suspect that you're behind the disease. That Diamond Dogs is doing it. Boss, you remember that oilfield mission back when we'd just come to Africa? The disease took hold in the CFA right after that. The CFA are afraid, they're frustrated, and they're angry. They'll want to pin it on us. Somebody's putting them up to it. Probably the real power behind the CFA, manipulating their information. Whatever they were doing at that oil field... and whoever's behind the disease... we need more information.

Blood Runs Deep (a photo of the former platoon leader)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The targets are six former members of an Mbele rebel platoon. That's one of them. He was the platoon leader. Then he turned his back on the others and joined up with the local PF. Now he's part of the security detail at the Bampeve Plantation. He's not so different from the general. They get plenty worked up for rebellion and revenge, but don't give a damn about their own men.

Blood Runs Deep (a photo of the area the remaining targets are at)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Five of the six targets are at the Kungenga Mine Reports tell us they're being put to work in the mine when it's not their turn to face interrogation. We don't have VI on these five. All we know is where they're being held. The rest is up to you.

On the Trail (a photo of the Major's subordinate)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: He's the one who was investigating the CFA on the Major's orders. If you follow him, he should lead you to the target.

On the Trail (a photo of the Major)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the target. He may have a connection to Cipher. I'd like to interrogate him to be sure, but there's no guarantee he knows anything useful. The contract is to eliminate him... but I'll leave things up to you, Boss.

Voices (a photo of the target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Shabani was the leader of the boys being forced to work at the mine. He was separated from the others and taken away to Ngumba Industrial Zone. The locals call this place "Nzo ya Badiabulu" - the Devil's House. Shabani was the oldest among the kids. He looked after them, and apparently they really admired them.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: We don't know why Shabani was moved to Nzo ya Badiabulu. The client has no idea either. It's not much, but he says "Shabani lost his singing voice." Meaning his voice started to break? That gives us an idea of his age.

The War Economy (A photo of the CFA Executive)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The target is a high-ranking CFA officer who manages the supply of weapons to UNITA. He lets just enough through to ensure that neither side can win outright. Prolonging the conflict to maximize profits. He's scum.

The War Econony (A photo of the Arms Dealer)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: He's an arms dealer selected to inspect Nova Braga Airport. Apparently he's the envoy of a major western arms manufacturer, but even the Intel Team can't ID him.

Retake the Platform (A photo of the target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the target - the enemy commander. He calls himself "Mosquito." The PF he leads has captured a szeable market share by imitating the way we work. The more the PF industry expands, the thinner the available manpower is stretched. Finding and training elite personnel takes time. But Diamond Dogs is not about to submit to some two-bit impostors. Eliminate this "Mosquito," suppress his attack force, and show them what we're made of. And by the way Boss, do you recognize this guy? He seems to have something personal against us.

The White Mamba (a photo of the titular target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the commander of the child soldiers. One day he just showed up in Bwala ya Masa, and whipped those kids up into a capable combat unit. He brought a new order to the region. The locals know and fear him as Nyoka ya Mpembe - the White Mamba. That name is practically all we know about him. And though he's the White Mamba... He's at the top of the local blacklist. He may be young, but he won't be an easy target. Sounds like a terrible little bastard all-around.

Close Contact (a photo of the male target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's one of the targets. He's an engineer with an American medical equipment manufacturer. After he got his medical degree, he started working in Namibia. He's a straight arrow, hardworking, specializes in a range of fields... quite the skill set. But best of all, he isn't tied down, and has been considering a career change. We don't know how he ended up getting sent to this conflict zone, but if we can convince him to join us, he'll make a valuable asset.

Close Contact (a photo of the female target)

Kazuhira Miller: She's a volunteer with a medical NGO, and is the male target's support. Though she's been in the field a while, that's all we know. Our client this time round is the NGO she works for. And her sponsor was the male target's corporation.

Close Contact (a photo of the targets' location)

Kazuhira Miller: Those are the tents where the targets are being held. They were originally the researchers' accomodations. The threat level seems relatively low...

Aim True, Ye Vengeful (a photo of the rescue target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: He's the rescue target, the second-in-command of the Mbele rebel militants. He's the younger brother of the general, but he's only distinguished himself these last few years. Still, to think he got himself captured by a bunch of children. Unless he went with them on his own accord...

Aim True, Ye Vengeful (A photo of the Commander of the rogue Mbele child soldiers)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's the commander of the child soldier splinter group. He may be a kid, but he got his platoon to revolt, abducted a militant faction's XO, and made off with a cache of weapons and ammo. Those kids are brainwashed with gunpowder from an early age, taught to kill, kill, kill. Real "elites." One of your objectives is to capture the commander and bring him to Mother Base.

Hunting Down (A photo of the target)

Kazuhira Miller: That's the target, the trafficker. He's a logistics officer for Rogue Coyote, but it looks like he's hired his bodyguards from one of their competitors. Why can't he trust his own men? Something doesn't add up.

Root Cause (a photo of the target)

Kazuhira Miller: That's the house where the target is being held. They must be interrogating him there. If he lets slip that the intel he has is related to Cipher... it's only a matter of time before they come to eliminate him. The fate of Diamond Dogs is resting on that one man.

Kazuhira Miller: That's the house where the target is being held. Moments after sending this data, the staff member who took the photo became symptomatic, and hasn't been seen since. This one photo is all we have to go on.

Code Talker (A photo of the titular target)

Kazuhira Miller: That's the target, Code Talker. We have no other intel on him. A total blank. From the looks of it, he's got quite the security detail... but if we're gonna stop the epidemic here, we need to find out what he knows.

Code Talker (A photo of the target location)

Kazuhira Miller: That's the mansion where you'll find Code Talker. Not something you see every day in the African wilderness. It was built by a local warlord. Must have lived a life of luxury... Until his government conspired to murder him. Local legend has it that his ghost roams the area around the mansion seeking revenge. None of the villagers dare to go near the place. Crackpot superstition... or a rumor designed to keep prying eyes away.

Skull Face (A photo of the titular target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Skull Face... Commander of Cipher's strike force, XOF. 9 years ago, he stole everything from us. Everything.

Sahelanthropus (A photo of the titular target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: It must have a weakness, right? How the hell is it moving, anyway?!

To Know Too Much (A photo of the CIA agent)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The target this time is a Soviet soldier who was passing information about his activities to Langley. He's the kind of scum I'd like to keep off Mother Base, but he knows about the parasites. We need to extract him to make sure neither the U.S. nor the Soviets learn about their existence.

Cursed Legacy (A photo of the first target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: That's a target container. Looks like it's in a relatively open area.

Cursed Legacy (A photo of the second target)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: A target container. It's concealed by vegetation. Watch you don't miss it.

Extraordinary (VI of the location of the film canister)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: We're working on analyzing the data, but there is no time to wait. It is paramount you retrieve the target before the enemy does.

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: Look for terrain that matches the VI. The target has to be hidden there.

Proxy War Without End (Photo of Gunship)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: That's a target gunship. The enemy has a clear view up there. If they spot you, you'll have a hard time losing them. I'd be careful about getting close.

Proxy War Without End (First Photo of Tank)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: That's a target tank. It has some serious firepower. Make sure your gear's up to scratch before you duel with it.

Proxy War Without End (Second Photo of Tank)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: A tank... that's a target too. Just don't overstretch yourself. Tanks aren't something you just take on alone.

Proxy War Without End (First Photo of Armored Vehicle)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: That's a target armored vehicle. Either tread carefully, or neutralize it first.

Proxy War Without End (Second Photo of Armored Vehicle)

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: A wheeled tank... Those are faster than the more common tracked variety.

Shining Lights, Even in Death (A photo of the quarantine facility)

Researcher: It all makes sense now. I... I win.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: This message is our only clue. Search the building and and find who sent it.

A Quiet Exit (A photo of Quiet)

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The vocal cord parasites are the last of Skull Face's legacy. It's up to us to erase it. Boss, the targets are quiet, and the English strain she's carrying. Your objective is to extract her, but if worst comes to worst, she may have to be eliminated. Both her, and the parasites.

Info Tapes

Headings marked in italics indicate the contents of the file are absolutely necessary to listen to.

Ocelot's Briefing [1]

British Sovereign Base Area - Dhekelia

Ocelot: You were hospitalized in Dhekelia, a British Sovereign Base Area on Cyprus. It's part of British Overseas Territory that falls outside of Cypriot jurisdiction. You got moved from Cuba's Little America right into Cyprus' Little Britain.
Venom Snake: Why Dhekelia?
Ocelot: The U.K. and the U.S. remain close allies. The last place Cipher would think to look for you is inside their own system. That's what kept you safe in a British military hospital for nine years. The safest place from a whale is inside its own belly - you were a regular Geppetto.
Snake: Well, it wasn't Pinocchio who led me out to safety. So who was that guy...?
Ocelot: Cipher went as far as to attack British territory, burning their own ally. That's how bad they wanted you dead.

Cyprus, A Nation Divided

Venom Snake: You said I was in a British military hospital. But the doctor had a Greek accent.

Ocelot: They hire locally - easier to trust them. Dhekelia is also home to Greek Cypriots after all.

Venom Snake: What about the Turks? They haven't returned to the south?

Ocelot: Not yet - the Cyprus dispute is still a long way from resolved. The country is just as split as it was in '74 - Turkish Cypriots in the north, Greek Cypriots in the south, and between them the Green Line the U.N established.

Venom Snake: And Dhekelia sits right on top of it...

Ocelot: It does. Part of the buffer zone between the two groups. Another reason it was the perfect place to hide you - easy to spot any outsiders snooping around.

Venom Snake: So how do things stand?

Ocelot: Last year, the Turks declared that the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is an independent state, though it's only Turkey that recognizes it. In the past, the Greeks and Turks lived side by side in the same villages. Their reasons to fight? Those came from the outside. Greece, Turkey, Britain, America... They all have their own stake in pitting the two sides against each other. But once you spark something like this, it's impossible to control. Both sides build up grudges like debt, without the foresight to see that each act of revenge just fans the flames. And then it's too late for other nations to rush in with peace talks - the embers keep on smoldering. Each nation's arrogance only breeds anarchy. The world is paralyzed by this hunger for revenge. Cyprus is no different.

The Route to Afghanistan

Ocelot: You're up.

Venom Snake: We're changing ships?

Ocelot: Now, we can't go sailing the Suez in a whaler.

Venom Snake: The Suez Canal... when did they reopen it?

Ocelot: Not long after you were attacked. Once they finished sweeping it for mines after the Arab-Israeli conflict. Can you stand? We're going to transfer to a container ship for passage through the Suez. Our Destination is Pakistan. Afghanistan's neighbor to the south. There, we disembark and head via Peshawar to the Zero line - the border. We'll travel to the Khyber Pass by road.

Venom Snake: And then?

Ocelot: We continue on horseback. Afghanistan's main roads are under Soviet control. We'll need to go around them. It'll be all narrow, winding paths through the mountains. We'll do better on horseback. It's a local guerrilla tactic. They use the high ridges to avoid air recons, then they charge down the mountains for ambushes. The Soviets still haven't devised a counter strategy. Our time frame is only half as much as we really need. It's going to be a tough march.

Venom Snake: Better horses than boats.

Ocelot: Well, it'll make for good physiotherapy. Take the time to get used to the new arm.

World Affairs over the 9 Years

Radio: While The Soviets have not indicated they are not participating in the Los Angeles Olympics primarily because "The United States has made no attempt to guarantee the safety of the Soviet Union's athletes," The United States is increasingly demonstrating the belief that the issue has nothing to do with its preparations, and in fact this is retaliation for the Western nations boycott of the previous Moscow Olympics. That concludes today's news.

Venom Snake: That's quite some news.

Ocelot: The Soviet Union not attending the L.A Olympics? Yeah. Andropov's death has changed some things. They're calling it revenge for the Western boycott of the Moscow Olympics.

Venom Snake: Countries boycotted the Moscow Olympics?

Ocelot: Yes, in protest to the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan. Over 50 countries were absent. It's too bad I didn't get to see Yamashita's judo. When the 40th Army crossed the Amu River 4 years ago, détente went right out the window. The U.S Congress chose not to ratify SALT II, and Reagan's hardline politics won him the presidency by a landslide. According to him, the Soviet Union's "an evil empire."

Venom Snake: A second Cold War.

Ocelot: And there's been no end to regional conflicts and civil wars. Lebanon, the Falklands, Grenada, Iran, Iraq... The story never changes. Egypt and Israel did sign a peace treaty. But then the driving force on the Egyptian side, President Sadat, was assassinated afterward. Apparently his actions were considered a betrayal of his fellow Arabs.

Venom Snake: Islamic extremists?

Ocelot: Yes. Fundamentalist extremists have been responsible for some bold acts of terrorism in recent years.We've had extremist students in Iran take U.S embassy workers hostage, and suicide bombings in Lebanon. Over 300 foreign soldiers stationed there have been killed. But countries have yet to develop an effective means of dealing with terrorism. Afraid of losing their own men, they pulled their forces out, handing private forces a golden opportunity.

Venom Snake: Private forces?

Ocelot: Small armies with no national affiliation, working for the highest bidder...That's right, they got the idea from you. After Mother Base went down, they began spreading to meet the soaring demand. Miller's organization is just one of many PFs now. The entire world is after you. But at the same time, it needs you too.

What Happened in the Caribbean 9 Years Ago

Ocelot: Miller told me about what happened in the Caribbean nine years ago. You do remember Miller? You'd formed a private army with him. An army with no allegiance to a nation.
Venom Snake: I remember, but...
Ocelot: I see...You're not sure what's fact and what's a...fantasy caused by the coma? It's still all a mess, huh. All I can do is tell you the facts as they were told to me. I've gone easy on you up until now, but this is where the hard stuff begins. 1974, the year before you entered your coma. You were in Columbia, operating with a small unit of men... basically mercenaries. Miller was among them. Miller was trying to find a way to turn his and your "talents" into a line of work. He was looking to start a business where you would fight on behalf of others around the world - Those who needed military force. But the reality was, at that time you didn't even have enough gear to equip your own men. Then, Miller came across this client. It was a huge job he was offering, but you had a shot at pulling it off. You accepted it and headed into Costa Rica. The client even threw in an offshore facility in the Caribbean - the "Mother Base" that would be your new base of operations. Miller sure did have a head for business. As your mission went on, your unit grew and grew. More weapons, more money...And before you knew it, you were commanding 300 men. As the organisation got bigger, your military power swelled to match. It got so that the international community couldn't afford to ignore you. You were just too damn successful for your own good.

The Strike Force: After the Attack

Ocelot: You - your men - had worn out your welcome. Everyone was out for you. East, West, first world, third...It was only a matter of time before someone took you down - and that was XOF. Officially, they're an anti-terror under the CIA. In reality, they're Cipher's private strike force. They lured you to Cuba using Chico, the Nicaraguan revolutionary kid, and Paz, a mole who worked for Cipher as bait. While you were gone, XOF - posing as a nuclear inspection team - stormed Mother Base. At the same time, C4 they'd placed on the strut legs went off. The whole thing went down in minutes. XOF...kisses and hugs followed by a big "F" you. All because of Miller's blind spot - a back door into Mother Base no one suspected. You remember a certain...scientist? Huey was responsible for bringing the "inspection team" on board. Giving the enemy a perfect opportunity to hit you at home. You were returning from Cuba when it happened...Mother came damn close to taking you with it into the Caribbean. Those of your men out on assignment returned right away. They refused to believe the wreckage in the water they found was Mother Base. But they checked the coordinates - again and again - until reality finally settled in. You were supposed to die that day - that was XOF's primary objective. As far as most folks know, you did. The first doctor to see you wasn't even sure what he was looking at...Before they'd even finished operating, your men moved you to that hospital on Cyprus. It was a woman named EVA who arranged that...Rings a bell, hmm? Most men in your condition would have been written off right from the start. But you survived. You went straight down to hell... and they pulled you out, your eye wide open. Full of venom. The days of Naked Snake are long gone. Welcome back, Venom Snake. This world still needs you.

After-effects of Snake's Coma

Ocelot: Here Snake, try this on.

Venom Snake: A prosthetic arm?

Ocelot: Miller was calling it "the arm that wasn't there." The physiotherapy is going well. Your arm's bulked up for it to fit. There. Perfect. A little time with it and it'll work better than the real thing. What do you think?

Venom Snake: I can still feel my real arm.

Ocelot: Well, you'd better get used to this one quick. You have any pain?

Venom Snake: Every now and then...

Ocelot: Where?

Venom Snake: ...My fingertips. My left fingertips.

Ocelot: Sounds like phantom pain. Your brain remembers your old hand.

Venom Snake: Yeah.

Ocelot: What about your vision? Can you see okay?

Venom Snake: Yea, at the moment.

Ocelot: The shrapnel on your skull is pressing on your optic nerve. I'm told any hard impact could have an effect on your visual cortex.

Venom Snake: Yeah, the doctor mentioned that.

Ocelot: Your brain might process visual information incorrectly - in other words, you could have hallucinations. You might see things that aren't there, or see things as they really are. You experienced any of that?

Venom Snake: I think so.

Ocelot: When?

Venom Snake: Right after I wake up. Colors look faded.

Ocelot: Colors, huh...That's not a major concern in and of itself, but it could mean the difference between life and death in the field. You'll need to watch out for that.

Venom Snake: I will.

Ocelot: Alright, you should continue your physio. We'll be arriving soon. This is the last chance you'll get.

Ocelot's Briefing [2]

The Moniker Shalashaska

Venom Snake: Ocelot, I hear they've started calling you Shalashaska in Afghanistan. What's that about?

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: (heh) You know the term "sharashka"? It's slang for a suspicious, hastily-thrown-together organization. The word became associated with a type of forced labor facility in the Soviet Gulag system. OKB scientists and engineers who'd been convicted of crimes were sent to a sharashka for forced R&D. The sharashkas were supervised by Lavrenty Beria of the NKVD - the secret police - under the official name "4th Special Department."

Snake: Forced research? That's not very different from what we do here.

Ocelot: (heh) Diamond Dogs is different. Everyone here believes in you. Regardless of where they came from or why they're here, they revere you, and they're fighting because it was their choice.

Snake: And if it wasn't, they'd leave?

Ocelot: Who knows? That's our reality here, whether it's real or not. If there's another truth, I don't want to know it. All that matters is, that the concept that's taken shape in their heads. The traces of a group ideology, or superstructure, to put it in Marxist terms.

Snake: All right. Go on.

Ocelot: Right. So anyway, at some point the enemy started calling me "Sharashka." This was after the war in Afghanistan broke out. While I was keeping an eye on you in that hospital, I was also heading up interrogations here. The men I broke gave up their comrades and families, everything they wanted to protect the most. No real cause for it. I just let myself get caught up in the old Russian pride. And suddenly I received the "honor" of becoming "special interrogation adviser to the forced labor camps." But the more men I interrogated, the more people saw me as just that - the interrogator. It helped cover my real objective of keeping you safe.

Snake: You went that far for me?

Ocelot: Far enough to keep you alive. I ended up being pretty well-known among the Afghan guerrillas. Some of them would have seen me on the battlefield. And that's how I got the second half of the name. "Shashka" - it's a sword, a type of sabre from the Caucasus. Russian Dragoons and Cossacks carried them into battle. Now, the Russian Empire had a general by the name of Fyodor Arturovich Keller. His bravery earned him the nickname "Russia's Greatest Shashka." Someone must have known about that... Because somewhere along the line, shashka got stuck on the end of sharashka. The guerrillas were using the name amongst themselves, and by the time I got to hearing about it, the pronunciation had wound up as "Shalashaska."

Snake: So half gulag, half hero's sword. It's a perfect fit.

Ocelot: But you see how rumors and ideas about people can get out of hand fast. Once you create a character and put it out there in the public mind, it warps and twists with every baseless rumor. And before you know it, all people see are phantoms. In my case it works out just fine. I'm plenty used to working under aliases.

Ocelot's Briefing [3]

SALT II

Venom Snake: So SALT II still hasn't gone into effect.

Revolver "Shalashaska" Ocelot: That treaty was drawn up to limit not just the size of the U.S. and Soviet Union's nuclear arsenals, but also their delivery systems, the whole deal.

Snake: Just when we thought all those years of negotiations had paid off, somebody decides to invade Afghanistan. The timing couldn't have been worse. The President was in the middle of the SALT II talks back then.

Ocelot: You mean while you were busy trying to stop Peace Walker? I heard. President Ford was meeting with the General Secretary in Vladivostok. In his absence, the political brass in America detected what they didn't realize was false nuclear launch data from Peace Walker, and were on the verge of ordering a retaliatory nuclear strike.

Snake: Coldman's big idea - "Humans are incapable of destroying themselves?" Turns out he never knew what humans are capable of.

Ocelot: If that A.I., I mean, The Boss hadn't found a way to stop the fake data transmission, they probably would have gone ahead with the launch. Deterrence was revealed as the pipe dream it was. All thanks to you, and her. The U.S./Soviet talks looked set to fall through. What happened in Nicaragua no doubt helped trigger a change of heart. But in the end... The times define the politics. When you've grabbed their tail, they turn and bite your hand.

Meeting Ocelot, and the Formation of a Certain Organization

Ocelot: I first met you twenty years ago now. The place was Tselinoyarsk, in the Soviet Union. We were enemies. I was with GRU, you were still fighting for America. 1964, Operation Snake Eater... Its objective, the assassination of the legendary soldier known as "The Boss." When you returned home successful, they awarded you the title "Big Boss." Your CO, Zero, sought to carry on The Boss's will by covertly establishing his own organization. You knew the original members from Operation Snake Eater. From America, there was David Oh, or as he was to you, Major Zero. Donald Anderson, a.k.a. Sigint. Dr. Clark, who went by Para-Medic during the operation. And the fourth - you. From China, there was EVA. And me, Ocelot, from the Soviet Union. Six in total. To us, government notions of friend and foe were meaningless. As were East and West - we joined forces by our will alone. Our objective was to fulfill The Boss's dying wish. To make the world one. And to do it, Zero used the Philosophers' Legacy, the secret war fund you obtained during Operation Snake Eater. This organization would go on to become... Cipher. I on the other hand, was left with a problem. You only recovered half of the Legacy. I had to locate the other half myself. When I found the funds, I passed them on to Zero, just as you wanted.

Venom Snake: I still trusted him in those days.

Ocelot: We thought what he was doing was The Boss's will. Until he started that one project.

Snake: "Les enfants terribles," Zero called it.

Ocelot: You parted ways. As did EVA, leaving only Anderson and Clark still with him. I maintained limited contact... Although, truth be told, we were just keeping tabs on one another. The reason was always you. After you returned to the Army and created FOXHOUND, you left America. For a time, even I'd lost track of you. I'd imagine Zero did too. You always were the best when it came to hide and seek.

Where is Zero?

Ocelot: Zero created Cipher, an information network to tap into every corner of the globe. Woven together, Cipher's arteries make the world one big organism. And that's not all... It also monitors the thorn in Zero's side - that's you - tracking your coordinates wherever you might go. The further you strayed from your roots, the larger Zero became. It's as if he was trying to close the gap between you. But before long, he disappeared from public life. Only a few people had direct contact with him. For a time, I was one of them. Then, a year after you fell into your coma... He slipped out of sight entirely. Since then, nothing. No photos, no recordings, not even a reliable rumor as to his whereabouts. I tried everything I could think of, but... Zero was gone. Freed of his control, his creation - his power - continued to grow. Cipher is a great beast, and Zero was its spine. But even without him, it's endured - evolved. But now its body is rotting, riddled with parasites. Parasites like the ones who attacked you - nine years ago in the Caribbean, and then at the hospital. Cipher's black ops unit. XOF. They learned where you were... And came to wipe the slate clean.

Afghanistan Today [1]

The Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan

Ocelot: Christmas Eve, 1979. The Soviet Union rolled into Afghanistan. Muslims had revolted against the Soviet-friendly regime established the year before. The DRA forces could no longer contain t themselves, so the Soviets went in to intervene. The Afghan government was powerless, and fraught with in-fighting. They'd lost the hearts and minds of the people, and that alarmed the Soviet leadership. With the Islamic Revolution happening in Iran, the Soviets felt they had to act fast or risk the spread of Islamic revivalism. A superpower, sending a motorized rifle division against men on horseback with antique rifles. Everyone thought I'd be over in an instant. Only it wasn't. Some Muslims made their fight a "Jihad", a holy war, and began a guerrilla campaign on all fronts. A war of attrition. These fighters call themselves "Mujahideen". They're being supported by the West, through Pakistan. That's why Miller was involved. He was training them near the Zero Line, sponsored by the CIA. The war's become a nightmare for the Soviet troops stationed here. They thought, they'd be headed home in six months at the most. Then a year passed.Two years...now here we are four years on with no exit in sight. Afghanistan has become the Soviet Union's Vietnam.

The Soviet Army's Scorched Earth Operation

Ocelot: The Soviet troops on the ground want to go home, but at least they have homes to go back to. The Afghans have lost theirs. The Soviets destroy the kishlaks - villages - wherever they can. They burn down homes and fields, fill in the wells. Turn pastures into minefields. It's created a mass of refugees who've fled to Pakistan. If the Mujahideen are fish swimming around the villages, the Soviets will go so far as to dry out their ocean. But this has had a big price. Thee's bitter resentment among the Afghans, and they're taking out their anger on the soldiers on the front lines. Among the Mujahideen are the Pashtun people. They're fiercely devoted to their code of badal, or revenge. Soviets they've captured have had their hands, feet and noses cut off, before being left to die at the side of the road. Just to show their comrades what they're capable of. Friendlies who come across them can do nothing but put them out of their misery. Then they burn down another village in retaliation. And the cycle of vengeance goes on.

Afghanistan Today [2]

The Threat of Soviet Gunships

Ocelot: This war... The Kremlin never expected to have this much trouble against the Mujahideen. Afghanistan is a tribal society. The tradition demands that its people stand up to any outsiders who set foot on their land. With the honor of their people at stake, they have everything to fight for. No matter how hard the Soviets hit them, they continue to appear out of nowhere, striking back, then vanishing again. But there's one thing even the Mujahideen fear - every last one of 'em. The Soviet gunships. They're highly maneuverable and equipped with massive firepower. Plus, the underside of the fuselage is heavily armored. The Mujahideen can barely scratch them with their small arms. Anyone who hangs around gets mowed down by the gunships' heavy machine guns. This new Honey Bee weapon that was given to the Hamid fighters...it's no doubt something to help them strike back against the gunships. Which makes it a weapon that could change the course of the war.

The Hamid Fighters

Ocelot: Those guerrilla fighters known as Mujahideen don't actually belong to a single organization. Afghanistan is a multiethnic country. You've got the Pashtuns, the Tajiks, Uzbeks, Hazaras...And each of them is split into their own tribes, large and small. Each ethnicity has several rebel organizations that their various tribes gather under. They're united under the banner of "Jihad", but that doesn't mean they work like a single standing army. Just look at the area around Smasei Fort. A lot of Tajiks used to live there, but they fled after the Soviets started their scorched earth campaign. Wit the area uninhabited, the Hamid fighters, who are Pashtun, decided to move in. The Hamids are based out of the city of Peshawar. We passed through it on the Western edge of Pakistan. The Pashtun people have long lived in Afghanistan and western Pakistan. They used to travel back and forth frequently. Then Britain went in and established the border that still stands today. The Hamid fighters get generous support from the Pakistani government. The government wants to use them to secure influence over Afghanistan. Their liaison with the Hamids is Inter-Service Intelligence. And behind the ISI, you have the CIA. That's probably how the Honey Bee ended up in the Hands of the Hamid men.

Afghanistan Today [3]

Honey Bee Analysis Results

Miller: I had the R&D Team analyze the Honey Bee.

Ocelot: How? The CIA wanted it with everything intact.

Miller: They took it apart to look at it. Then they put it back together. Everything intact.

Ocelot: That's the R&D boys, all right.

Miller: Turns out, the Honey Bee's homing capabilites are a cut above previous MANPADS. It can deect a broad range of infrared wavelengths, and even ultraviolet for supplemantary guidance.

Ocelot: Hence the name, huh?

Miller: Right. Honey bees rely on UV light to fly. With this device, flares don't do the target any good.

Ocelot: That's why the Soviets are losing so many gunships...

Miller: And why the CIA was so desperate to get it back. It wasn't just about preventing the Soviets from devising countermeasures. What if the likes of Iran got their hands on it?

Ocelot: American aircraft would be put at risk too...

Miller: We can use this tech to develop our own portable missile. That'll give us a huge advantage. It'll take a little time before the analysis results can be applied to actual implementation...But, we'll keep moving with the research.

At Mother Base [1]

The Mist Unit

Venom Snake: Kaz, what about the unit that attacked us in that mist? You knew something about them.

Miller: That wasn't my first run-in with them... It happened right before I was captured by the Soviets. We were on the Zero Line that day. The Afghan side. On our way back from training the Mjahideen at a mountain cap in Kunar Province, There's a lot of that work in Afghanistan. Most PFs shy away from it because it draws too much attention - but for us, that was the whole point. The job itself went great. We just had to make it back to a tribal area in Pakistan. But all of a sudden, visibility got real bad. It was no sandstorm. Our point man gave this strange report. He said he could see skulls in the mist.

Snake: Skulls...

Miller: The next moment, he went silent. We scrambled into formation, right before his arms and legs came raining down on us. It was always supposed to be a dangerous mission, so I had Diamond Dogs' very best with me. We were calling out to each other, but one by one their voices just went dead. Whatever happened to me, I lost consciousness before I knew it. When I came to, I was in a Soviet camp, tied to an interrogation chair.

Snake: Could they be some new Spetsnaz unit?

Miller: No, the ones that interrogated me were just the average rank and file. Whatever group attacked us, the way they moved was just insane. And that mist, appearing out of nowhere... The Soviets don't have tech like that.

Snake: If they did, Ocelot would have heard about it.

Miller: I doubt the West does, either. Otherwise the folks at Langley would be sleeping a lot easier.

Snake: Why'd they come after you?

Miller: Wish I knew. I'm the only one who survived. Though I don't think they planned t that way. If I was their target, they wouldn't have just handed me over to the 40th Army. Whatever the case, we need to watch our step until we know who they really are. And Boss, if you ever do run into them again, don't try to take them on. You just get the hell outta there.

Cipher's Will

Miller: When I first started dealing with Zero,.. with Cipher... it was a somewhat parasitic relationship. Though, a mutual beneficial one. Cipher had no army of their own. So they wanted us. They wanted our strength. They approached me as a potential business partner.

Venom Snake: But they had other motives.

Miller: Cipher coaxed us into Central America, into that U.S. / Soviet proxy war to fuel Mother Base's growth. Once we were big enough, they'd force us to join them. That was the plan.

Snake: That's why they had Paz steal ZEKE.

Miller: Right. And if we refused, she would use Zeke to fire a nuke from Mother Base. The world would consider us a liability, and countries would unite to destroy us.

Snake: We stopped the launch...

Miller: And yet they still took us down, through that fake instruction they orchestrated to cover up their sabotage...That power Cipher wanted - we don't have it anymore. So why are they still after you? Is it just the fear of leaving you alive?

Snake: I don't know. Would Zero really....All I know is, the man I knew wouldn't want this.

Miller: What do you mean?

Snake: We have to consider that it might not be Zero we're dealing with.

Miller: We know virtually nothing about Cipher anymore - how big they've gotten, what they want, or even who they really are.

Mother Base Reborn

Miller: The new Mother Base started out as a test drilling rig operated by a mineral resources supplier. But their project fell through.  The Seyohelles government was happy to hand the place over to us – it was just scrap on stilts.

Snake: Hmm.

Miller: So, with a few dummy construction companies set up as fronts, we started renovating the half-finished rig. From the outside it looked like the project was back on rails.

Snake: Kaz, you…

Miller: What?

Snake: I see what you’re doing. Recreating the Mother Base we had nine years ago. Only this time…

Miller: That’s right. The Mother Base Cipher thought they’d destroyed will return from the grave to kill them. We’ll prove to the world that we were the victors.

Snake: And if we lose again?

Miller: They can’t fool us the same way twice. Now, our enemies are in plain sight.  And when our organisation gets too big, we split it across companies. Any company that draws attention gets liquidated, and its capital is back-channelled into a new company. Most PFs are smail-time operation anyway, and in this business, the minnows go bankrupt all the time. We’ve never aroused suspicion. Plus, we have HEC.

Snake: HEC?

Miller: HUMINT Exploitation Company. It’s a business specializing in intel-gathering – think of it as a civilian intelligence agency.

Snake: Kaz, that’s…

Miller: Remember what they were trying to accomplish at that prison facility in Cuba? That gave me the idea. We dispatch moles into conflict zones around the world, and each sets up an intel network on-site. They then stay in place to give us stable points of contact when other nations intervene in the conflicts. HEC’s strength is that it has a cut-out at each level. You get your job from one guy, then you hand it off to another. No-one has direct access – it’s a perfect black box. HEC members also work their way into the superpowers’ intelligence agencies to make sure Diamond Dogs gets work. We have those countries by the balls. That’s our deterrent when we need it.

Snake: Networking…in the intelligence community?

Miller: Sure, that’s how we’ve grown this far. And when you go out on missions, intel from HEC will be there to back you up.

Snake: But despite all that, Cipher has its eyes on us.

Miller:' The only reason I’m not dead is that they needed to know where you were. Figured if you woke up, I’d go straight to you.

Snake: That’s why you made that ruckus at the Zero Line…

Miller: Yeah – to make their own surveillance work against them, I think it took some of the heat off Cyprus.

Snake: Kaz.

Miller: Then I just had to wait for you to save me. And I’ve gotten used to waiting.

Snake: Kaz…

Miller: That’s not all – it was a good chance to scout the market. And with the West wanting the Soviets out of Afghanistan, their agencies are bursting at the seams with funding. Boss, let’s start by building up our Afghan presence.

Connection with Seychelles

Snake: Why put the Mother Base in the Seychelles? We’re at the centre of the world here. We’re all the way out in the Indian Ocean.

Miller: Come on – Lebanon, Sri Lanka, East Timor… and Africa. From here, our reach extends to conflict zones the world over, including Afghanistan, of course.

Snake: So it’s prime real estate for a mercenary.

Miller: Exactly, Latin America isn’t as close as I’d like, but we have Amanda and her people to help in that department. And besides, the Seychelles government owes us a favour.

Snake: Owes us?

Miller: The Seychelles has strong ties to the East, which the West wanted to shake up. It came to a head 3 years ago in an attempted coup. It was a force of South African mercenaries, with U.S. backing behind the scenes. They were only platoon size, but South Africa is home to some heavy PFs. Too much for the Seychelles to handle. In the end, they accepted help from the Tanzanian Army and quelled the coup. We set up the deal and handled on-site tactical instruction.  That led to some training work for the Seychelles military, and when we put down a mutiny within their forces, well, we made a lot of people happy. They don’t pay us, they just let us have a piece of their offshore territory on the promise we’ll come running if something else happens.

Snake: So we’re bodyguards, too.

Miller: It’s a good setup; we can only take Mother Base so far here. We’ll have to find somewhere else when this place starts getting big.

Snake: Aren’t you being a little hasty?

Miller: Nothing hasty about it, you’re back with us now.

Whaling Ship "Heiwa Maru"

Snake: So Kaz, the ship that took us from Cyprus, it used to be a whaler?

Miller: Yeah, a Japanese vessel. How was the voyage?

Snake: It was, uh, stimulating.

Miller: She was part of a whaling fleet up until a few years ago. Her displacement isn’t anything to write home about, but she can really move. She still had plenty of life left in her, but then the work dried up. Global opposition to whaling has been mounting for years.

Snake: Is that right?

Miller: The push to ban it has been gaining traction for a little over a decade. Individual species came under protection as the years went on, and then two years ago the IWC adopted a moratorium on commercial whaling. Several countries, including Japan, fought it to the bitter end, but eventually most whaling companies had no choice but to throw in the towel. You ever tried whale, Snake?

Snake: Can’t say that I have.

Miller: When I was a kid in Japan, practically everybody ate it.

Snake: That good, huh?

Miller: The country was poor in those days, and whale was cheap. International opinion’s changed since then. In any case, that’s why we were able to get a bargain price on the ship. Of course, we did end up spending five times the purchase price in modifications. We had to really work to fit in all the ESM and communication gear while keeping the whaler look intact.

Snake: Right now she’s going around conducting SIGINT missions.

Miller: In the future we plan to use her as a communication relay base between you and Mother Base, and also as a chopper resupply vessel.

Origins of "Diamond"

Miller: The word “diamond” originally comes from the Greek “adàmas.” It means “indomitable”, “unyielding”. Other words for the stones often mean “eternal bond”, “fortitude” or “purity”. The same is true of the Star-of-Bethlehen flowers you laid on The Boss’s grave. They represent innocence, as well as chastity. Yielding to no man while maintaining one’s virtue – in other words, staying loyal to something.

At Mother Base [2]

Private Forces

Venom Snake: Ocelot said the number of private forces is increasing, and they've modeled themselves after us.

Miller: They're a far cry from the likes of us.

Venom Snake: But why? Nine years ago we made enemies of the world as a nuclear-equipped force, independent of ideology or state...

Miller: Yes. Sooner or later the real U.N. would've stepped in.

Venom Snake: So why are they giving these PFs free reign?

Miller: That's our fault too.

Venom Snake: What do you mean?

Miller: What happened nine years ago was a real problem for a lot of people. An organization as big as ours, with our facilities, was wiped off the map. Not an easy thing to hide. But if our existence came to light, so would the names of our clients. We had contracts all over: East and West, from superpowers to banana republics, the lot. Our clients denied all association with the likes of us. They had to make sure things didn't... "blow up" on them. But at the same time? They missed us--they really missed us. The demand for armies-for-hire was as strong as ever. The international community turned a blind eye to what happened to us, despite still needing people who could do our jobs. History couldn't afford to lose us. As soon as we were gone they needed a replacement. So private forces spread everywhere and they're all just a phone call away.

Venom Snake: But still...

Miller: I know. PFs are totally different from what we envisioned. Nation-states, revolutionaries, terrorists... they have a lot of clients, and Cipher is one of them. Cipher stays anonymous but I know their work when I see it. In the eyes of those clients, the world's PFs are all just expendable pawns. The clients don't have to worry about losing their own men. Nobody knows they're involved and PFs are cheap. In short, the world is chewing up soldiers and spitting them out. Even some of the old Mother Base's survivors are still working for PFs. Some guys created their own smaller forces, others were taken on by emerging PFs. Everybody's gone their separate ways... but none of them are living their dream, because they're not fighting with you. Of course, I tried to headhunt as many of them as I could for Diamond Dogs. It was all a waste of time. They said they weren't interested without you to lead them--but now you're back, and everything's gonna change. We'll unite all private forces under you, transcending nations and economies. What is a nation? Just a patch of dirt. The bonds among us will surpass nations, and that's what'll put the world under our control. We'll establish a new kind of country, redefine the very concept of it. Even Cipher will be below us: an extra-territorial federation of military nations. The "United States" of force.

Big Boss, Back to Life

Miller: Once word of Big Boss's return starts traveling, that'll be our true deterrent against Cipher. In other words: no one will dare to come gunning for you.

Venom Snake: How do you figure?

Miller: Cipher lacks a large-scale fighting force. PFs are the perfect tool for them... but those PFs revere you. "The legendary Big Boss." If Cipher killed you now, they wouldn't take it lying down. Maybe they'd even go looking for revenge. But they definitely wouldn't keep doing Cipher's dirty work, even if it put their lives at stake. That's why it's no longer a benefit to Cipher to get rid of you. The very fact that you're alive is our greatest defense against Cipher.

Venom Snake: Nice to know. It'll buy us some time while we get back to full strength.

Miller: Just keep in mind that what I'm saying is generalizing a lot. In practice, the PFs around the world don't know your face. Just declaring that you're Big Boss won't be enough to convince them. And if they see you as an enemy they'll come at you with everything they've got.

Venom Snake: Some "hero."

Miller: That's why you need to bring them back to Mother Base. Show them on your terms that you really are the one and only Big Boss. Once you've proven that? They won't hesitate to join us.

At Mother Base [3]

Bionic Arm

Miller: We were lucky to get our hands on that cyborg arm developer. There's no one in Diamond Dogs who can so much as maintain that thing.

Ocelot: "Bionic" arm, not "cyborg." If you go by what he calls it. But you're right: the East is light-years ahead in bionics. They can even detect, through the skin, the slight electrical signals from the brain that order muscles to move. The Soviet Union completed their first bionic arm capable of doing that back in the 60's... although I guess that news didn't really reach the West...

Miller: No kidding. Zadornov's was the only one I ever saw. Quite a shock to see it for the first time.

Ocelot: It was no mean feat to get hold of Snake's arm. I couldn't get one for you at the time, but you know, now--

Miller: Forget it. I've no intention of relying on bionics. Right now I need to keep the pain fresh in my mind.

Ocelot: Well, it's your decision... but don't you find it... inconvenient?

Miller: Not a bit... but the phantom pain... it never lets up. Do you know how many men I saw die that day? There's nothing we can do to bring them back, and you expect me to care about getting a measly arm and leg back?! [long pause and sigh] Sorry. But my pain belongs to all our dead comrades. I'll keep living with it for their sake. It'll guide me straight and true until I've gotten them the vengeance they deserve.

At Mother Base [4]

Intel Team

Miller: Diamond Dogs' Intel Team specializes in information gathering, mainly HUMINT and SIGINT. they plant scouts and moles in the field. These operatives will blend into the local populace and work under the guise of a resident, or disguise themselves as travelers and ask around for information. They observe targets using various hidden bugs, cameras and transmitters, and by tapping their satellite and phone communications. Analyzing all this information creates a clear picture of how wars and the PFs fighting them are changing. This data can also be used for threat assessment when deciding whether to accept contracts from certain clients.And during missions, the Intel Team keeps track of target locations, and produces FOM predictions... Reporting mission-critical information based on real-time remote observation of changes in the AO. What you hear from us over the radio is based on how we interpret the data gathered at the Command Platform. However, Intel Team operatives go unarmed in almost all situations, to avoid revealing themselves to the enemy. Some will carry a knife, but most have nothing at all. As such, don't expect them to help you take on heavily-armed adversaries like PF soldiers. Think of them as entirely passive in the hot zone. Plus, they use all manner of techniques to remain inconspicuous in the field. If you EVER saw one, he'd have some serious explaining to do. So remember, their specialty is espionage. They may not be of use in a firefight...but when it comes to Intel, they're pros.

At Mother Base [5]

Training D-Dog

Ocelot: DD makes a pretty good partner, huh Boss?

Venom Snake: Too early to say.

Ocelot: Yeah? Just seeing him come back makes me real proud.

Venom Snake: What breed is he? He's not a husky.

Ocelot: You're right. Siberian husky is a cross between a Spitz type dog and a wolf. I think DD might have some wolf blood in him too. He isn't just smart, he's also shown remarkable judgment. If he isn't doing what you want him to, he's just doing what he thinks is right in the situation. And he's steady under fire. Remember, he's no lap dog. But learn his strengths and you'll understand each other soon enough. You'll make one hell of a team.

Venom Snake: Ocelot, why'd you take it upon yourself to train him?

Ocelot: Why?

Venom Snake: Yeah. When's the last time you heard a wildcat raising a dog?

Ocelot: I have an eye for 'em. I know at first glance he'd make the right partner for you.

Venom Snake: Hmmph.

Ocelot: And I figured it was about time he got out into the world.

Venom Snake: So you passed him off on me.

Ocelot: There, you see? I knew you liked him.

Venom Snake: I don't know about that yet. I still think he's trying to figure me out too.

Ocelot: Well, spend some more time with him, you'll see how helpful he can be.

Venom Snake: What about you?

Ocelot: I prefer to work alone.

Venom Snake: Ocelots don't hunt in packs?

Ocelot: Yeah, something like that. Anyway, I'm glad you like him. DD's really taken to you, too, and to going on your "walks." Don't be shy about taking him with you in the future.

Venom Snake: I'll think about it.

At Mother Base Supplemental [1]

Background to the Epidemic

Miller: Look closely. Those are the symptoms of the infection on Mother Base. The blisters on the body were full of tiny worms. Parasite larvae, most likely. But we couldn't find any adults. It doesn't seem to mature in the body like a sparganum. We don't know the root of infection or what causes symptoms to develop. The infection rate, along with the number of dead, are both on the rise. If we don't find the cause... and soon... [sigh]

Ocelot: Boss, do you remember seeing these symptoms before? The bodies floating around in the oil facility? The bedridden test subjects at The Devil's House? The epidemic looks just like what we've seen on our hunt for Cipher. It could be a counter play by Skull Face.

Miller: That's insane. You mean they've weaponized parasites?

Ocelot: Parasites as weapons... that definitely falls under the Biological Weapons Convention, but it's something the world would never see coming. And no one's ever developed a vaccine for parasites.

Miller: So this is the weapon of mass destruction Cipher was working on in Africa?

Ocelot: It may be. But if it is, how do the yellowcake and Walker Gears fit in? There must be something bigger we're not seeing. Anyway, our priority now is to prevent more casualties.

Miller: The Medical Team was studying the infection, but we can't treat anyone until we know the root cause. All we can do right now is halt the spread of infection.

At Mother Base Supplemental [2]

Identifying the Infected

Miller: Remember before, Boss, when Quiet attacked one of our guys on Mother Base, stuck a knife in his mouth. He's one of the very few soldiers who've had contact with her recently. Close contact. I don't think it's a coincidence that he was among those who became symptomatic pretty early in this epidemic. Saliva and blood spatter, an open wound, mucosal infection... whatever is causing this got inside him then.

Ocelot: Miller, that is a baseless accusation!

Miller: The source of the infection is Quiet. Everyone suspects her.

Ocelot: We don't know that, AND we've come across these symptoms before. The bodies in the water at the oilfield facility, those sick people in the beds at The Devil's House, they're identical to what we've seen while we've been after Cipher. The infection could've come from elsewhere. At the very least, she does know something.

Miller: It's not like she's gonna talk!

Ocelot: No, not through words, anyway. What about her actions? Quiet held a knife to that soldier back then, before he became symptomatic. There must've been a reason for that.

Miller: A reason for shoving a knife down the throat of one of our men?!

Ocelot: What if she's capable of identifying who's infected? What if she was trying to stop the infection but couldn't communicate that to us? The answer to that, the source of the infection, might be in the mouths of the infected.

Miller: You think there's some kind of clue in their mouths?!

Ocelot: I don't know. But maybe there's something about the mouths of those who become symptomatic, something in common.

Miller: Something their mouths have in common?! Forget it, we can't trust her. Even if she can spot the infected, I don't want her help!

Ocelot: I understand how you feel, but this is something to go on.

Miller: Can't you see it's just like I said? Bringing her here was a big mistake! Quiet is gonna be the end of us--

Ocelot: Stand down. You've got zero proof. [To Venom Snake] Try to keep an open mind on this, Boss. There has to be a way to identify who's infected.

What Happened to Old Mother Base Members

Chico and Amanda

In the final sentence of the tape, the subtitles incorrectly state that Diamond Dogs was Chico's "mask" on the world, when it should have said "mark". The audio dialogue says the correct word.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Snake, do you remember Amanda?

Venom Snake: Yeah, I do.

Miller: Their revolution was a success. Somoza resigned, and Nicaragua has a new government. Amanda's really working hard for her country to be reborn.

Snake: Good for them.

Miller: She says she wishes Chico could be there.

Snake: That revolution was the dream... for Amanda, for Chico, and their father.

Miller: ...That chopper was no place for Chico to die. I'd like to at least think history will remember his part in the revolution.

Snake: When you pick up a gun, there's always the chance you'll die for nothing. He knew that as well as the rest. Now that he's gone, it's up to the rest of us to decide what it was all worth. If we don't, there's nothing to prove Chico ever lived at all. We're his mask [sic] on the world.

Strangelove

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Amanda told us that Strangelove contacted her after the revolutionaries came to power in Nicaragua. Strangelove... The A.I. Researcher from Mother Base?

Venom Snake: I remember her.

Miller: We'd lost touch with her, until Amanda heard from her out of the blue. She told Amanda she wanted to salvage Peace Walker's drive parts or something from the bottom of Lake Nicaragua. Amanda passed the request onto her friends in the new administration. She's a national hero, after all. So Strangelove got a Soviet military aircraft to transport something to somewhere. But apparently the cargo wasn't big enough to have been Peace Walker itself.

Snake: So what was it?

Miller: Who knows. We recovered Peace Walker's nuclear warhead ourselves nine years ago. What could Strangelove have been after? Amanda said she didn't mention what her reason was or where she was headed. Nicaragua's a socialist state now. And with Amanda vouching for her, the government didn't feel the need to concern themselves with the details. All Strangelove told Amanda, was that she was going to continue her research. And that the rest was "a secret."

Huey

Miller: Right before the attack, Huey was in the control tower to prepare for the inspectors. He was with them when it all went down. The control tower collapsed with the rest of its strut, his body was never recovered. But he was the one who met the inspection party when they arrived. AND he was the one who showed the nuclear inspectors to the tower. You remember the way it went. First he recommends we agree to the inspection, then he gives the the OK without our permission, all the time acting as if he was doing us a favor. On top of that, he even had the guards disarmed that day. "It would send the wrong message," he said. Whatever the angle, it all leads back to Huey. I curse my own stupidity for not realizing this sooner. Huey escaped with that unit by chopper. I've been hunting him for nine long years. The other reason I was operating around Afghanistan was to dig up his location.

Venom Snake: Huey's in Afghanistan?

Miller: Yes, and I have a good idea where. Now we just wait for the right moment. This time, we'll be the ones using him. He's going to tell us who our "guests" really were, that used a fake nuclear inspection to blast our home into the ocean.

Quiet [1]

The Sniper Quiet Appears

Ocelot: A sniper known as "Quiet" is lurking in the Afghan wilderness. This Quiet has performed a string of hits on Soviet officers. The attacks always occur in the same area. But sweeps of the area turn up no traces whatsoever. They've even posted guards, but they never spot a thing. And then before you know it, another body's lying on the ground. You ever heard of someone who operates like that? No matter how still and silent a person tries to be, they always create some kind of ripple. Be it breathing, a heartbeat, eating, excreting, body temperature, sweat... If this sniper can really vanish completely... That's just not human. I guess "Quiet" is the right name. But what is Quiet's objective? The local guerrillas wouldn't use this kind of tactic. I just can't see them hiring some superhuman mercenary. And the Soviet officers who've been killed... They were all opposed to, or skeptical of the secret weapons development being conducted in the area. Sure, they were a problem for those supporting it, but the Soviets have nothing to gain by killing them. So we have an assassin with superhuman combat skills who isn't working for the guerrillas or Soviets. Miller has a theory... That this sniper's a hitman for Cipher. He thinks it's time we silence Quiet for good. But I am against the lethal treatment. I say we bring the sniper back alive and break that silence. Because even if this Quiet doesn't say a word, there's still plenty we can learn. Just remember this, Boss: If our hunch is right, you'll be on this sniper's hitlist too. If things seem a little too quiet, when you are in the field, watch out. Quiet's out there somewhere. And if possible, this is one sniper I want back here breathing.

Quiet [2]

Quiet's Missile Interdiction Sniping

Ocelot: When Quiet first came here, she demonstrated her marksmanship against that enemy fighter plane. It showed she was much more than your everyday crackshot. Hitting a moving target from 600 meters is a challenge, but it's possible with the right training and equipment. But shooting down that missile? That's a world apart from taking out a soldier on patrol. The chopper and the missile were in motion, meaning different vectors at high velocity in three-dimensional space, AND, she shot an unguided bullet that had to fight air resistance and gravity. All that while the chopper was taking evasive maneuvers. Some of the best target leading I've ever known. She has a superhuman sense of spatial awareness. You put her in a fighter jet and she'd be an ace right off the bat. Hell, your judgment was top class too, realizing she could take out that pilot? That's quick thinking. You and Quiet could make a hell of a team, damn near unstoppable.

Events after Quiet's Extraction 1

Ocelot: Quiet is still in her cell. Only a few staff are authorized to go near her. She hasn't tried anything funny... But that's what bothers me most.

Venom Snake: In particular?

Ocelot: What did she have to gain by coming to Mother Base? I first thought she was under orders from Cipher to take you out. She didn't manage it in Afghanistan, so Round 2 happens here. So I lightened the guard. And that lock on her door is a joke.

Snake: You gave her an opening. And?

Ocelot: Well, she hasn't killed you yet. And I hate to say it, but she's had plenty of chances.

Snake: You made me the bait.

Ocelot: Poisonous bait - what better. Anyway, she didn't bite. Quiet is "keeping her silence." So I'm left with no idea again - what's she doing here. We tried communicating with her through writing, but that didn't work either. Whether she's illiterate, dyslexic, or just plain stubborn, she just won't cooperate. I just don't get it. If she tried to contact the outside, it'd be picked up by our counterintelligence net. But it's clean. There's no sign she's had contact with the staff, the base facilities, nothing. She's almost got the men wanting her to try something, just to find out what she's up to. And she's in there putting on the failed soldier look - all downcast eyes and defeated sighs. But she doesn't kill herself. She can't be trying to leave Cipher and surrender to us?

Snake: So what's the verdict?

Ocelot: This may sound optimistic, but here's how I see it... Quiet came to fulfill some objective. To kill you, maybe to destroy Diamond Dogs. Whatever it was, before she could do it, something changed her mind.

Snake: Yes...

Ocelot: When I look at her... I sense hesitation.

Snake: You think she'd betray Cipher?

Ocelot: Can't say for sure. I prefer the ones that talk. Anyway, we'll keep her under watch. And we're also looking into those special abilities of hers. You'll be the first to know if something comes up. Why not look in on her yourself once in a while?

Snake: Right.

Quiet [3]

Events after Quiet's Extraction 2

Ocelot: Boss, Quiet still hasn't made any moves. It's got me thinking.

Snake: What?

Ocelot: If you took her on a mission, she might break her silence.

Snake: You want to let her out?

Ocelot: Sure. Make her no different to the others. Everyone you pick up works for themselves, right?

Snake: But her...

Ocelot: I say work with her, see what happens. I wouldn't ask this of anyone but you. On missions I'll make sure we have someone observing from a distance, and she won't be allowed access to all of the base. As for Miller... well, sometimes it's better to ask forgiveness than permission. The best part is: hiding is her specialty. If no one sees her leave the base, the staff will be none the wiser.

Snake: And if she gets away?

Ocelot: If that happens... you'll have to take care of her. But I have faith in you, Boss. I think Quiet sees something in you.

Snake: It's a big risk.

Ocelot: But it's for the good of all of us. And besides, you can't deny her talent. Her unique skills and abilities would give you a hell of an edge out there.

Snake: I'll think it over.

Quiet [4]

Quiet on Mother Base

Miller: How long are we gonna keep that woman here?

Ocelot: You mean, Quiet?

Miller: My personal feelings aside, she's putting everybody on edge. You should hear the stories. "I got sick from just standing guard at her cell." "I won't stand on the same platform as that witch." "She hit me for no reason."

Ocelot: What is this, a private army or a kindergarten?

Miller: The thing is, they're all serious. They're faced with something they don't understand, and a kind of mass hysteria has broken out. I've gotten wind of countless plots to take her out.

Ocelot: There are no grounds for this suspicion whatsoever. Put yourself in her shoes. Assuming they see her as a prisoner here, no, even more so if they do, she deserves to be treated humanely. I always thought our men were a bit more noble-minded, but... look. I understand this is a stressful line of work, but to make her the scapegoat?

Miller: You've got it wrong! Quiet, she's with Cipher! We have men that lost their buddies to her organization!

Ocelot: You could say that about more than just her. Plenty of the men used to fight for another side, but they've all put that aside to work for the Boss.

Miller: Cipher is different, and if you ask me, the Boss is the biggest problem! Why is he protecting her? Some of the guys are starting to suspect him of... [pause] I don't agree with keeping her here either.

Ocelot: So what's your move? Throw her out? Kill her?

Miller: [huff, grumble]

Ocelot: She's our ticket to Cipher and her physical abilities are outstanding. We could use someone like her.

Miller: Don't make me sick.

Ocelot: Her marksmanship, speed, stealth capabilities, for a start. Then there are the other things we've learned. Quiet appears to be able to use both eyes as master eyes simultaneously. That lets her track targets of different focal lengths at once! While looking through the scope with one eye she can look for new targets with the other! That's why she doesn't need a spotter. She can operate alone no matter the circumstances.

Miller: See? I told you she's a freak! No one would be able to control her!

Ocelot: No... there's one person who could.

Miller: Hey, you tryin' to get the Boss killed?!

Ocelot: Well why don't we talk to him, hm? See if he's willin' to take her along.

Miller: I don't like this.

Ocelot: It's his decision to make. The two of them might even make a good team.

Miller: [huffs]

Quiet [5]

Quiet's Mission Performance

Miller: Where is she?!

Ocelot: You mean Quiet? In her cell, of course.

Miller: Why did you send her out with the Boss on that mission?

Ocelot: She proved herself well enough, didn't she? The Boss sure knows talent when he sees it.

Miller: That woman will never be one of us. She's targeting him!

Ocelot: Don't forget, we do owe her one.

Miller: What's that supposed to mean?

Ocelot: Remember what happened when she first got here? She shot down the aircraft Cipher sent after us. Not only that, she hit the cockpit. Who else could've done that? We're talkin' about a fighter jet traveling at Mach speed.

Miller: What's your point?

Ocelot: If she hadn't been there, the Boss's chopper would be at the bottom of the ocean right now, or it would've been followed right back to Mother Base. So let's say she does have some elaborate scheme in the works. If you wanna catch her in the act, all we can do is sit back and wait. On the other hand, if she swears allegiance to the Boss like our other Fulton recruits, he couldn't ask for a better partner.

Miller: [growls] She's got you fooled.

Ocelot: I have eyes on her. She tries anything, she'll regret it. We lose nothing either way.

Quiet [6]

Why Did Quiet Disappear?

Ocelot: Boss, we've gone over the prisoner transport log you found. Quiet was grabbed by the Soviets and moved to Lamar Khaate Palace. They lost a lot of men to her, can't blame them for wanting payback. But why did she just let herself get captured?

Code Talker: I think it is time you knew. Quiet was carrying vocal cord parasites. The English strain, to be precise.

Miller: The third English pair...

Code Talker: Skull Face was using her as a vector, an "ace in the hole" if his assassination plan failed.

Miller: I knew it!

Code Talker: But Quiet chose not to speak. She told me the situation in Diné--Navajo--the only language to which the parasites do not react. If you found out, she could not remain among you. And yet she refused the Wolbachia treatment. Why? Because part of her still wanted revenge against you.

Miller: Revenge against the Boss...?

Code Talker: In order to stay here she took a vow of eternal silence. But then, that sudden mutation showed this was not enough. As long as the parasites were inside her, she could not predict what might happen.

Ocelot: And that's why she took off? Sacrificing herself to make sure the English strain died with her?

Miller: Maybe. Or maybe she only wants to infect the world. Whatever her plan, we can't let her go free. The vocal cord parasites are the last of Skull Face's legacy. It's up to us to erase it. Boss, the targets are Quiet and the English strain she's carrying. Your objective is to extract her, but if worst comes to worst, she may have to be eliminated. Both her and the parasites.

Ocelot: We don't know for sure what Quiet's up to, but we need to secure her ASAP. She's being held at Lamar Khaate Palace. Make your way there.

Quiet [7]

Quiet's Message

Quiet: I did not choose to be Quiet. I wanted to express my feelings to you. If only we shared a common tongue. Vengeance was what drove me to them... The only language left to me, revenge. But the words we shared... No, that was no language at all. That is why... I chose the language of gratitude instead, and go back to silence. I am Quiet... I am... the absence of words.

Questioning Huey [1]

Emmerich's 9 Years

Huey: It wasn't just Cipher. Back in the Caribbean, every eye in the world was turned on us. A private army - just a bunch of guys with guns - in possession of a nuke? Why wouldn't they be uncomfortable?

Ocelot: And that's why you made sure the inspection happened.

Huey: Well I thought our best move was to prove to the UN, through the IAEA, that we had no nuke. ...Of course, I was against us having it in the first place. But that was Snake's decision.

Miller: The Boss wasn't responsible.

Huey: Don't get me wrong, I still believed in Snake. I thought I was making the best decision for all of us, that's all. I figured we should get a third party to exonerate us before proof of the nuke did get out. And who better to do that than an organisation with international authority?

Ocelot: So the truth is, you took it upon yourself to agree to an inspection arranged by the UN. Only the inspection was a ruse, and Cipher's strike force, XOF, showed up instead.

Huey: I had no idea that would happen.

Miller: Enough bullshit!

Huey: Oh sure, like I could've known! You know I was just trying to prove our innocence to the world. What's wrong with that?

Ocelot: We're not interested in the excuses you've thought up,. The truth is objective.

Huey: Just see it from my point of view...

Ocelot: You led XOF to the control tower. They seized it, giving them complete control over the base. Moments later, they detonated C-4 on the strut legs. Anyone who'd managed to survive was hunted down by the assault force and their choppers.

Huey: You can't believe I did that on purpose?

Ocelot: That was the end for Mother Base. But it wasn't the end for you.

Huey: How can you...look, think about it. I lost something too. I built ZEKE, and it got buried underwater. I am a victim.

Ocelot: That raises the big questions. Why were you the only one spared? You got away without a scratch. Why did Strangelove leave the base on the eve of the inspection? You two were close.

Huey: Strangelove?

Ocelot: And how did you manage to build something that surpasses ZEKE in every way? Because you did everything they told you. You're the only one who didn't lose a thing. That is the truth.

Huey: ...I was taken away against my will. Skull Face forced me to do his research these past nine years. He used me. I lost nine years!

Miller: Nine years? We all lost nine years. It wasn't just you.

Huey: ...I suppose blaming me makes you feel better, does it? But, who is gonna give me back all the time I lost!

Ocelot: You're not getting anything back.

Miller: You're not a victim here, Emmerich. You're the perpetrator.

Huey: I didn't know anything.

Ocelot: Nobody can back that up.

Miller: Yeah, all the evidence...is at the bottom of the ocean.

Emmerich's Research for the Soviets

Ocelot: You know the hardest man to break? The type who's fooling himself. That takes time. It's easier to live a convenient lie than a painful truth. Is that the "peace" you've chosen, Doc?

Huey: I'm not lying.

Ocelot: Of course. Just let me check one or two things. On that day, you were in the control tower with them. Lucky you - that's how you got out unscathed. And you escaped on one of their choppers - only you - right before it went under.

Huey: They had me blindfolded... The whole time! I've neevr been so scared. The whole flight, I thought they'd kill me. But, but thinking of you kept me going. My comrades... all the way.

Miller: And.

Huey: There was a plane journey, then we traveled by road. When they finally took off the blindfold, I was in a kind of a warehouse, on the floor. Afghanistan. It was that research lab. I couldn't believe they'd taken me halfway around the world. And soon enough, HE came...

Ocelot: Skull Face...

Huey: He's the one who's really behind that Mother Base attack. He forced me into that research.

Ocelot: What kind of research?

Huey: He told me to build a bipedal walking tank, for the Soviet Union. Like Peace Walker... a system that could fire an ICBM-class nuclear weapon. That's how the Sahelanthropus project got started.

Ocelot: Sahelanthropus.

Huey: Those AI weapons I'd made in Costa Rica were like toys by comparison. A whole world apart from reptilian four legged crawling and that ridiculous hunched over bipedal waddling. My design evolved. To the dawn of mankind - Sahelanthropus - the first steps towards humanity. An "upright" bipedal weapons system.

Emmerich's Research History

Huey: Originally, Sahelanthropus was going to be a manned weapons platform. I designed a cockpit in it's head, and I planned to fill it with water as a buffering agent.

Miller: Like how Paz modified ZEKE for human control.

Huey: Don't compare me to some amateur. I designed it for human control from the beginning. The problem was miniaturizing the posture control AI. You remember the Reptile Pod?

Miller: The AI that controlled your unmanned weapons.

Huey: Attaching it externally makes it vulnerable. So this time I wanted it beneath the armor. Meaning I had to make the AI smaller. I got it down to less than a tenth of it's size without any loss in computation speed. But it was still too big for the cockpit. There wasn't enough room for the pilot. If I made the head bigger, it's body would have to be bigger to support it. Too big to be practical. In the end, human piloting was taken off the table. I tested a remote control system too, but there was the time lag, and I wasn't satisfied with it's precision either. Plus it would be useless if the enemy jammed it. So next I went back to trying an AI-only system. To do that I had the AI pods recovered from Nicaragua. This was a hybrid AI, a combination of Peace Walkers Reptile and Mammal Pods - the only AIs that had ever successfully operated an unmanned nuclear weapon system.

Miller: Really. You'd need some help to get that working. Expert help.

Ocelot: Did you work with someone?

Huey: I worked alone.

Miller: You did that yourself?

Huey: That's the thing - the AI didn't pan out in the end either. But I did finally get Sahelanthropus walking by folding over it's upper body to lower it's center of gravity. The first upright, bipedal locomotive weapons system in the history of mankind. ...I guess technically it falls into the anthropoid ape category.

Ocelot: I don't see the benefit of having it stand taller.

Huey: On terrain with significant differences in elevation like Afghanistan, you need a body that's vertically adaptable. That also lets it attack from long range while using mountain ridges for cover. So making it walk upright was the most important factor in giving it superior height capability. As the name suggests, that was the whole point of Sahelanthropus. But I was being pushed for results. Having the AI mounted externally would've been the fastest way to get it working. I just needed more data so it could maintain it's balance. But Skull Face refused to wait. He dismissed the idea of AI control, and took Sahelanthropus away from me before I could finish it.

Ocelot: But... It was walking when it came after you.

Huey: That's just it. I don't understand how Skull Face got it to move upright. Without a pilot or an AI. And walking at that speed too. It's beyond anything I could have imagined. This is like the Wright Brothers making it to the moon. I'm just as clueless as you are.

Ocelot: So, this... Sahelanthropus, where is it now?

Huey: I have no idea. All my experiments took place at that cave. I've never seen it anywhere else. Besides, it's still just an incomplete prototype at this point. And nothing but a paper tiger. Even if it can walk, it's far from being a viable weapons platform. It wouldn't be useful in actual battle.

Diamond Dogs' Treatment of Huey

Miller: Emmerich will remain here at Mother Base for now. But not as a member of Diamond Dogs. I still don't trust him. That work for you?

Snake: Fine by me. He can't be allowed any contact with staff either.

Miller: Yeah, a lot of the guys would love some payback for nine years ago. We still need him alive. But we have to restrict his movements. He can only go where we tell him. And of course, the interrogations will continue. He worked for that skull bastard for nearly a decade. He still has more to tell us.

Snake: How long are we gonna press him?

Miller: If our investigation shows he really had nothing to do with the attack, we'll reconsider his place here. But I don't expect that to happen.

AI Pod in the Lab

Miller: Remember that water tank-shaped object in Emmerich's lab, in the Soviet Base Camp? The thing that started talking to you like a possessed answering machine? That was a pod build for housing the AI used to control unmanned weapons. You remember,. Back in '74, in Costa Rica. It was in those machines you fought there. They were designated Pupa, Chrysalis, Cocoon and Basilisk, and each of them was fitted with an AI unit called a Reptile Pod. Emmerich created it. It mainly handled the machines posture control and autonomous behavior. But the Basilisk, a.k.a Peace Walker, also featured a second AI pod. That one was called the Mammal Pod... And it was created by Dr. Strangelove. She tried to recreate The Boss's personality through the Mammal Pod. But you pulled out it's memory boards. That's when it transferred it's own functions to it's Reptile Pod. Just like a human brain compensating for damage by using the remaining healthy parts. The result was a unique entity, a hybrid of the Reptile and the Mammal. It sank to the bottom of Lake Nicaragua with Peace Walker but apparently they salvaged it and transported it to that lab. Don't let it deceive you, Snake. It may sound like The Boss, but it has neither a personality nor a will. Like Emmerich says, it's just a machine.

Questioning Huey [2]

What is Sahelanthropus?

Ocelot: You called that thing "Sahelanthropus"? Where does the name come from?

Huey: Well, Several years ago, an excavation team discovered a hominid skull in the Sahel region.

Miller: Central Africa... the southern Sahara.

Huey: Cipher gave the specimen the name Sahelanthropus - "man of Sahel." Then, they covered the whole thing up.

Ocelot: Why?

Huey: They probably wanted to monopolize information about human evolution to have a head start in their genetic research. At least, until they had an idea of what they'd found.

Ocelot: It was that big of a discovery, huh?

Huey: Sahelanthropus was a gracile hominid, estimated to have lived about seven million years ago. What's significant about it is how it's skull's foramen magnum faces down. In other words, it's spinal column supported it's head from underneath.

Ocelot: It stood upright.

Huey: Right. Which would mean Sahelanthropus walked upright three million years before Australopithecus, making it the worlds oldest human species.

Ocelot: Walking upright...I get it. Hence the name "Sahelanthropus" for your machine.

Huey: Walking upright was the decisive difference between our ancestors and other anthropoids. Our brains could get heavier once they were supported by the spinal column. That led to the use of tools, and the development of complex communication through language. Only man is capable of this. My creation will be the progenitor of all bipedal weapon platforms.

Ocelot: And you did this for Cipher.

Huey: No, not at all. Sahelanthropus is the best proof that I never betrayed you guys.

Ocelot: What do you mean? The reconstructed Sahelanthropus skull looked exactly like the skull we used as our logo nine years ago in the Caribbean.

Miller: An army without a nation, outside the world order.

Huey: The design was based on Pangaea, the supercontinent that existed 250 million years ago, right?

Miller: Yeah, when the world was a single landmass. That concept's at the source of our strength...

Huey: I felt the same way about Sahelanthropus. Sure, I was forced to build it, under their orders. But I always wanted to put it's technology back in our hands someday. That's the reason I incorporated the old insignia into Sahelanthropus's name. Don't you see? That's how much I was thinking about you guys.

Ocelot: Oh I see, all right. I see someone desperate to cover his ass. You can say whatever you want after the fact. But that skull also symbolizes somebody else - Skull Face.

Clone Research 1

Huey: Snake. You finally came. Just...Don't record this, OK?

Snake: I'm not recording anything. What's this about?

Huey: What I'm about to say stays between you and me. It's about the "weapon to surpass Metal Gear"... You know a researcher by the name of Clark? He works in the Biotech industry - real advanced stuff. His area is bioengineering, but lately he's gotten into genetic research.

Snake: Never heard of him.

Huey: Well then, what do you know about cloning?

Snake: I think I've heard enough.

Huey: Hold on, this is important. Cloning lets you create a genetic copy of an organism. You take the nucleus of one of it's cells and swap it with the nucleus of an unfertilized egg from another member of the same species. They started out working with plants, but since then they've had success with other organisms, including mammals. It's a hot area for a lot of places right now - corporations, universities, research groups...There's no shortage of scientists out to get famous and patent their work, with morality taking a backseat.

Snake: Isn't that a little outside your field?

Huey: It's got nothing to do with my research. But I thought it might be of interest to you. Cloning, and Dr. Clark, I mean.

Snake: Go on.

Huey: Now, this is really highly-classified stuff, but I've heard than an American biotech company has successfully cloned a human being. What's more, it happened over 10 years ago. And the researcher behind it was Dr. Clark. You've never really heard of him?

Snake: I don't meet many doctors.

Huey: This Dr. Clark is a complete ghost, even to others in his field. His age, where comes from... That might be his real name, and I can't even say for sure "he's" a "he". Clark's employer, ATGC? It's company motto is "Embracing your hopes, preserving talent."

Snake: What does this have to do with me?

Huey: Cipher.

Clone Research 2

Huey: Dr. Clark works for ATGC. They have connections to DARPA. Cipher couldn't function without the communications network DARPA's built, meaning Cipher has to be a part of the Pentagon, or at least, the two are joined at the hip. DARPA is a driving force behind human cloning. It's a pretty high priority project for them. And this Dr. Clark? Some say he's a pivotal player in Cipher, but that's not all. Every cell nucleus in an organism contains the genetic information for that organism. Think of it as a blueprint for life. Clark appears to be working on how to decode this information and rearrange it at will. If you could do that, it would mean being able to custom design human beings for specific purposes. Can you believe that? Suppose for a moment that this is all fact. A man of your talent... if your genetic information died with you, that would be a terrible loss for mankind. But what if mankind could preserve you for future generations, by cloning you?

Snake: All right, enough. I get the idea.

Huey: Look, I know it's inductive reasoning, but this "weapon to surpass Metal Gear" they're developing in Africa, I believe it's something that uses this new technology.

Snake: [grunts]

Huey: Speaking as a fellow scientist, it chills me to the bone.

Snake: That's rich, coming from you.

Huey: If genes serve as our blueprint, then I wonder if they include an impulse to tweak the design? Can you imagine that? Genes encoded with information that wants its children to decode it. Is life itself putting the direction of our next evolution in the hands of scientists? I guess it would take some real arrogance to believe that. And yet, it could be what Cipher's after...

Snake: I think you're barking up the wrong tree. But that was an interesting story. It'd make a good movie.

Huey: You have to believe me!

Snake: Where'd you hear all this, anyway?

Huey: Where? I just overheard it in bits and pieces while I was forced to do that research for them.

Snake: [sarcastically] Right...

Huey: W-w-wait a minute! Look! I want to help you, I want to be of service here! I'm risking my life with this!

Snake: Is that so? Maybe it's time we brought someone else into the conversation...

Huey: No! Not him--not Ocelot! You can't do this!

Questioning Huey [3]

The Body Found in the AI Pod

Huey: Fine... yes, Strangelove was doing AI research in that lab.

Miller: Why hide that until now?

Huey: Why...? Ok, so what, I- I wasn't working alone! You do understand, right?! It's my load to bear, alone!

Ocelot: So you didn't create the AI intended to drive Sahelanthropus. It was Strangelove.

Huey: Skull Face was never in favor of AI control. So, naturally, they argued... Strangelove, she-- [stammers] she-- she got him angry and, and... he killed her.

Ocelot: How? You didn't see it? [long pause] So you found inside the pod after the fact... and you just left her body to rot in there? Or perhaps you put her in there afterward.

Huey: I-- I-- I asked him not to take her away from me...

Ocelot: So she was killed by Skull Face, but you "asked nicely" and he put her body in the AI pod for you?

Huey: [stammering] Yyyyee-- that's right!

Miller: [derisively] Pathetic.

Ocelot: You know, we have another idea: that you killed her!

Huey: Me?! I-- I couldn't kill her!

Ocelot: You killed her and locked her body in the pod!

Huey: I wouldn't... don't treat me like one of you! I can't just kill anyone whenever I feel like it! I'm a normal human being!

Ocelot: Oh, I see... so you just shut her inside... and waited for her to die.

Huey: I would never do that!

Ocelot: What, you mean she killed herself?

Huey: Yes! She climbed inside that pod and shut the door! It can't be opened from the outside-- it was suicide!!

Ocelot: Hmmph?

Huey: Suicide, I said! She killed herself... She got in when I wasn't looking and-- and suffocated! She'd often try to do things like that... by the time I realized and opened the door, she wasn't breathing! I got scared and shut the pod again! I couldn't bring myself to open it back up... th-th-that's right! Me?! Kill her?! What is wrong with you?!

Ocelot: [sighs] I see. Just tell me one more thing.

Huey: Haven't you gotten enough today?!

Ocelot: Ok, ok, I see it's a painful memory. You don't have to answer, just listen to the question.

Huey: [sighs]

Ocelot: You see, we examined her remains. She had a scar on her lower abdomen--a surgical scar. It been stitched up and it fully healed. She had a child, didn't she?

Huey: [stammering]

Ocelot: Your child. Where's the kid?

Huey: How should I know?

Miller: So there IS a child!

Huey: I've... I've never seen his face.

Miller: What do you take us for?!

Huey: They took it all... even my child. I didn't even know he'd been born... I lost everything!

Ocelot: How old would he be?

Huey: It's four years since then...

Ocelot: And you know it's a boy.

Huey: Strangelove said so...

Ocelot: And his name?

Huey: We called him "Hal." Even though I never saw his face... [starts to cry]

Questioning Huey [4]

Cooperating with Eli

Ocelot: What was your goal in having the children repair Sahelanthropus?

Huey: I just answered their questions... I had no idea they would actually try to fix it! I mean, can you imagine a child piloting it?

Ocelot: Oh, sure. Easily.

Huey: It wouldn't work!

Ocelot: I bet it's just like riding a bike.

Huey: I said it didn't work! It--

Ocelot: Who did you try?

Huey: Uh... I didn't!

Ocelot: Did you put your son in it?

Huey: We never did that!

Ocelot: His name was Hal, wasn't it?

Huey: Aahh--

Ocelot: I thought you said you never saw his face... but you made him pilot Sahelanthropus. You used him in your experiments!

Huey: He wanted to get in! [sighs] It was such a short time we had...

Ocelot: So he was with you.

Huey: We were happy...

Ocelot: You're still happy now... changing your lies to suit the listener and slipping by through the cracks. Building layer upon layer of convenient stories until nothing means anything to you anymore. You're happy all the time--because you don't even notice you're doing it. Think hard. Who are you, really? You're not the victim and you're not the silent majority. You're a perpetrator and a petty hypocrite. The real world doesn't make you suffer, it's the other way around!

Questioning Huey [5]

Reasons for Facilitating the Wolbachia Mutation 1

Ocelot: Well, Doctor... I have the report on the incident at the Quarantine Facility. Assuming the vocal cord parasite evolved, I'm sorry, "underwent a mutation," the only plausible explanations are exposure to some high concentration mutagen or radiation. As you know, some of the staff at the Quarantine Facility were infected with the parasites. The Wolbachia prevented them from copulating, but the parasites themselves can't be removed from their hosts' vocal cords. Once you're infected with Skull Face's "parting gift," you're stuck with it. The researchers regularly used X-ray equipment to monitor the parasites in their throats. No problem there, they kept a close eye on the radiation doses. But that equipment didn't just give off X-rays; it was also emitting beta rays, even though that's unnecessary for the scans. See, beta rays have far worse effects on DNA than X-rays, meaning the only logical conclusion is that someone added in a beta ray emitter to trigger a mutation. Those beta rays leaked out from inside the equipment. Because the emitter was retrofitted, the shielding was inadequate, and the person who ordered and inspected the equipment... was you, Doctor. That makes you the only person with the opportunity to install that emitter.

Huey: So now you're saying I sabotaged medical equipment for some wild plan to make the vocal cord parasite kill everyone?!

Ocelot: Or maybe you thought it'd reveal a way to treat the parasite without using the Wolbachia... with that much to barter, I suppose some people would welcome even a pathetic cur like you.

Huey: Just stop it!

Ocelot: You'd have no shortage of buyers, but most would be happy with just the parasite. You wouldn't need to offer anything else... however, if that buyer already knew about the parasite, they'd also know that by itself, it's no longer the ultimate bargaining chip it once was. To sell to that buyer you'd need to throw in a bonus; a way to one-up it. There's only one buyer who'd be after that.

Huey: [stammers nervously]

Miller: Emmerich, we record all communications on Mother Base. That includes radio transmissions to and from homemade devices. You've been in frequent contact with people in America: a private biotech company, a client of which is DARPA, and they are connected to Cipher. You made a deal with Cipher. You offered them a new parasite in exchange for your safety. This is the only place in the world where the vocal cord parasite still exists. And you used it as a testing ground, tried to resurrect their bioweapon! But your plan to obtain the parasite has failed. Your bullshit ends now! ...And don't think you're leaving here alive.

Questioning Huey [6]

Reasons for Facilitating the Wolbachia Mutation 2

Huey: Wh-wh- [stammers] wait! What are you talking about? Just what do you plan to do?

Miller: Present the charges against you and render an appropriate punishment.

Huey: You're gonna put me on trial?!

Ocelot: Heh... call it what you like.

[doors open, angry Diamond Dogs burst in, shouting]

Miller: What's the meaning of this?!

Ocelot: Get out of here, all of you! Back to your posts!

Miller: No. Hang on. Huey has killed their comrades and interfered with their lives. They've had all they can take.

Diamond Dogs: [Clamor ensues, with cries of "Kill him!" "Kill that son of a bitch!" rising to the fore, while Huey protests.]

Huey: [over the din] Stop! This is insane! You have no evidence whatsoever! You say you're an army free from governments, you talk big about being a nation unto yourselves, but from the outside you're just thugs, rebels, a militia! You terrorists! An unhinged threat to society!

[The shouting dies down as Huey finishes.]

Huey: You're nothing but a bunch of psychopaths!

[Long pause.]

Miller: "You're?" So you're not with us?

Huey: [protesting] No! I didn't--

Miller: I thought we were on the same side. That's too bad.

Huey: I didn't mean--

[Miller lets out a loud grunt and strikes Huey with his cane.]

Miller: [addressing Diamond Dogs] Men, you will have justice. But our organization, the Boss's organization, is built on order and reason. There will be no lynch mob. So stand down for today! We will gather all the evidence of this man's crimes, and then he will be tried. Dismissed!

[The gathered Diamond Dogs begin to file out.]

Huey: What do you think you're doing?! Go ahead and execute me, it'll be murder in the eyes of the world! You've lost your minds! Don't you get it?! You're seeing phantoms... just look at that dog! No, you named him D-Dog, but it's obvious, anyone could see that's a WOLF! Because you're all a bunch of wild dogs! You wanted to believe he was too, to feel some connection, to fight your loneliness! You wanted something to cling to, to prove you deserved to be alive! You wanted to forget the death, your sins, so you cling on to dogs, or wolves, or even Big Boss... the Boss is the same, isn't he? Every one of you is alone, that's why you suspect your own! I know... because I'd do the same. I'm one of you too! Alone...

[A door clangs shut on Huey and he is left alone, shouting at his captors.]

Open your eyes! What you're doing is murder, plain and simple! All you ever create is war! War and violence can never lead to peace!

Questioning Huey [7]

Picking Up Emmerich's Work

Kazuhira Miller: The R&D Team is going to take over Emmerich's work. He may be gone, but it won't affect us one bit. We'll be able to deliver whatever you need just like before - you can depend on that. One other thing. I'm tracking his whereabouts. Nothing to report at the moment, though.
Venom Snake: Let it go. He's gone. The guy is gone.
Miller: I know. I just want to be sure. Not like I'm losing sleep over the son of a bitch.

AI Pod's Final Recording

Strangelove: Open this thing! Huey! Damn it Huey! Open it now! Please...Let me out...Kill me...If only I tried to get out sooner...Perhaps I'd have made it. Why didn't I stop the hatch from closing? Even if it meant losing an arm? Well, I guess I'll...stay a while. My voice...It's so distant. But you can hear me, can't you, Joy? I know you can. You're recording all of this. Deep down in some memory board he'll never find. Duplicating it...Burying it under heaps of meaningless code. Anyway, I guess I can say what needs to be said. I can still do that much - talk to you...Even if I can't face you. Even if there's a heaven - even if you're waiting there - I don't deserve to see you again. I don't deserve to love you. I signed up for Zero's plan. Even now that he's halfway to dead, his plan lives on - leeching away at the world. And it took your strength to make it happen. In using you, I put the world in his palm, once and for all. Zero...Zero...Or whoever it is who's taken his name...They found me - after the Caribbean. They made me...simulate his will. So that - even after the body was gone - that will would keep the world turning the way they wanted. I had no choice. They dredged Lago Cocibolca, pulled up your phantom...Forced me to revive and modify you. I thought I could bring you back! But in the end...I sold your will to "him." Now this pod is just one big shell - a husk. Your phantom is no longer here...As for me, everything I touch turns to ashes. I could never make anyone happy. ...And now I'll never see my son again. But at least Hal's free from his father's hands. Me, with child. Can you imagine? I wonder how you took the news. Were you jealous? I knew what I was doing. If I could pass your will onto a child I carried...My genes, your meme...The father would be...irrelevant. If I did that, that child would be ours. I've been a fool. Pride, conceit, baseless theories...Of course I couldn't see through the dream. The "false you" I created...I only wanted to pass your will on to the next generation. But Zero took it away. And now I haven't just lost you, I've lost my...Oh Hal, can you forgive the mother who couldn't protect you? The one who let them take it all away from us? There's still hope. You - the one he took away. He'll never break your will. The will to make this world...The way you saw it could be. I buried code - just to be sure. Inside of you, there's an "egg." And when someone finds it...When they crack it...They'll be nothing left to stop you. The world you envisioned will become a reality. Joy...I know you can hear me...You do remember my voice, don't you? Please...Take care of our son. Hal...Don't ever be afraid. Whatever happens out there, she'll be watching over you. The system - the framework for your world - will protect you. You don't need me...You just need to be strong enough for the both of us. Talked...too much...I'm glad it's you...Here at the end...I think I hear your pulse...

Cipher's Cargo [1]

Copper Ore

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, I have the report on the cargo we stole from Cipher's truck. The PF was transporting two things. The analysis of that malachite has come back first. Naturally, the main compound is copper. There's also a small amount of cobalt. Nothing unusual so far. Southern Zaire is a well-known copper belt. However, in addition to these, we also detected a trace amount of uranium. The content percentage, though, is too low for nuclear development. It most likely came from Shinkolobwe mine. That's where the uranium in that area comes from. The mine's closed, as all the high purity uranium ore dried up a long time ago, but you could probably still find it there in small quantities. That said, there are plenty of other uranium mines that are in operation, like in Niger, Namibia, South Africa... Why go to an abandoned mine to scrape up whatever's left and ship it out in mass quantities without refining it? They were transporting that yellowcake too, which would suggest they have the technology to refine uranium. Anyway, that about sums it up. Unfortunately, the analysis of that yellowcake is taking a little longer. I'll let you know when it's done.

Cipher's Cargo [2]

Yellowcake

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Boss, sorry to keep you waiting. We finally finished analyzing that yellowcake Cipher was moving. There was nothing unusual about the composition of the yellowcake itself. Most of it was oxidized uranium, with the rest being impurities - various metals, as well as traces of organic matter.What's interesting is the composition of those impurities. When we checked them against the impurities found in the copper ore, it was clear the yellowcake didn't come from Shinkolobwe. Meaning they went through the trouble of mining two sources of uranium, then transported them together in different states. Another thing. We detected a very thin layer of highly enriched uranium in the middle of the yellowcake. Now that is very interesting. It may not be a lot, but it points to the existence of uranium enriching technology. After all, yellowcake can't naturally produce highly enriched uranium. If they could mass produce this, they'd be just one step away from a gun barrel type nuclear bomb. But uranium enrichment requires advanced technology and a large-scale facility. If that kind of place existed in Zaire, the Soviet Union wouldn't sit idly by. And there's another question. Where were they transporting the yellowcake and malachite uranium? The first place that comes to mind is South Africa. The government was supposed to have abandoned nuclear weapons development after caving to international pressure. But rumors persist that it's continued in secret. Plus, ZRS were escorting the truck, and they're based out of South Africa. And then South Africa does have an abandoned test site. If Cipher's involved with nuclear development in South Africa...But how would that fit with their "weapon to surpass Metal Gear"? We need more information.

Shinkolobwe Mine

Ocelot: Shinkolobwe. There's a name I haven't heard in a while.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: The U.S. bought a lot of uranium from Shinkolobwe mine during World War II, for the Manhattan Project. They even sent a squad from the Army Corps of Engineers to reopen the mine after it was flooded. That's how good its uranium must have been. With that, the worlds first nuclear test was a success. Shinkolobwe uranium might have been used in the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs too. Just hearing its name is like seeing all the phantoms of the war rise up to haunt us. But all the uranium's dried up, and the mine's been closed for years.

Ocelot: So someone reopened it?

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Right. Zero Risk Security seized control of the area, and were forcing locals to work in it. And the Zairian government was getting a slice of what they took in exchange for looking the other way. Mobutu has to finance his tastes somehow. He'll gladly sell the rights to some old mine. The question is, why would Zero Risk Security do this kind of thing?

Ocelot: Or rather, why were their employers, Cipher, interested in an abandoned mine? They'd be getting trace of amounts of uranium, yet to the naked eye it appears to be ordinary malachite. Meaning security would be lax. Not a very efficient way of obtaining it, but easier to move.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: But how did they enrich it at its destination?

Ocelot: Did the yellowcake really have a layer of highly enriched uranium in it?

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Having trouble believing it?

Ocelot: No, if they say it's real, then it's real. In which case... they might have some enrichment method that we don't know about.

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: And this was to test it out?

Ocelot: It's possible. And that would mean it's almost complete.

Africa Today [1]

The Legendary Mercenary

Ocelot: Ever since the attack on your unit nine years ago, the name Big Boss has become known the world over.

Snake: What do you mean?

Ocelot: Those of your men who survived traveled far and wide. They fought throughout the world--in fact, they're part of the reason we have all these PFs now. Every one of them suffered their own "phantom pain" from losing you. Talking about you wherever they went helped to heal their wounds. Your actions and words--your legend--has been told on every battlefield they've set foot on. Obviously as the tales have spread, the truth's been distorted, painted over. "Big Boss sacrificed himself to show us the threat that Cipher poses. He sounded a warning," so it goes.

Snake: A warning?

Ocelot: "Too much power destroys the hands that hold it." Apparently you chose to be a living example of that.

Snake: I never said any of that.

Ocelot: The moment any truth is passed on, it starts turning into fiction. The problem is, fiction inspires people more than facts. To the world, you're now the legendary mercenary Big Boss. The lessons you've taught the PFs are the reason they're so widespread. They're the reason they've survived. You know what they all aspire to? To one day go nuclear, just like you did, and stand up to Cipher.

Snake: Of all the stupid things you could do...

Ocelot: They'll never understand what you really wanted. Heroes are misunderstood. It takes a man of the same caliber to understand what drives them. The bottom line is, these guys want to be like their hero, Big Boss, and deep down they all have their eyes on nuclear weapons. They say that a nuke is the only means of standing against Cipher. These days, it's become little more than a slogan to rally the troops and survive in a cutthroat business.

Private Forces

Miller: Apparently there are three major PFs who've expanded in Central Africa: CFA, Rogue Coyote, and Zero Risk Security. HEC's investigations have shown there's almost no overlap between their areas of operation. It's not so much a turf war, more like they have a gentlemens' agreement. If you do cross paths with them, you probably won't have to face more than one at a time. Still, don't expect a walk in the park.

Private Forces: CFA

Kazuhira Miller: The CFA - Contract Forces of Africa. These guys are a major player. Their head office is in Pretoria, South Africa. That's also where the South African Defence Force is headquartered. We think the two are closely connected. An HEC investigation revealed that most of the CFA's operators are former SADF soldiers. South Africa has been locked in struggles with neighboring regimes for years. That means constant action - and we know better than anyone that's the best kind of training. A company drawing its recruits from hardened military vets. You can bet they know how to handle themselves. Do not underestimate them.

Private Forces: CFA's Locally Hired Mercenaries

Kazuhira Miller: Within the CFA is a company of soldiers made up mainly of locally hired operators. They speak Afrikaans to communicate with personnel from the CFA, but if you notice any speaking the local language, that's them. Though hired from the local population, they were originally part of a paramilitary group, so they'll have plenty of combat experience. And unlike their days shooting junkyard rifles out of beat-up pickup trucks, the CFA now supplies them with the latest gear from the West. On top of that, they've been combat-trained by South African Army. All that adds up to a much stronger fighting force. So don't brush them off.

Current Affairs in Africa

MIller: Look at the Angola-Zaire border region, the east bank of the Munene River, in particular. It's a microcosm of a problem that stretches all across Africa. There's a civil war going on in Angola fought between the government MPLA and the Western-backed UNITA. Zaire is still a dictatorship under President Mobutu, but numerous uprisings have broken out in its remote regions. With all the trouble elsewhere keeping their hands full, neither government has control over their side of the border. They depend on militias and PFs, as do the rebels. Government forces, guerrillas, militants, groups of all shapes and sizes hawk whatever resources they can to hire PFs. Conflict brings PFs, PFs expand the war zone, and more conflicts erupt in a continuous chain reaction. Huh, sounds like our kind of work. Mother Base could grow by leaps and bounds.

Africa Today [2]

The Spread of Walker Gears

Ocelot: Hard to believe how many of these bipedal weapons have popped up around Africa.

Venom Snake: When did that start?

Ocelot: No more than six months ago. Didn't really hit me until I came here.

Venom Snake: They're not supposed to be in use yet.

Ocelot: Emmerich says they were still doing the last round of fine-tuning. The doctor has no idea. His research has already hit the black market. Both sides of the Iron Curtain will have it by now.

Venom Snake: [grunts]

Ocelot: ...Even so, they're spreading much too fast. Sure, the Walker Gears can operate in any terrain. Their mobility's just as good in the jungle, as it is in the desert. That would come in handy in a place like Africa. They're modules that can one day be used as nuclear weapons - and with that in mind, the numbers are way too large. There must be another reason trey're so widespread.

Venom Snake: Like what?

Ocelot: It's all about needs. To small-time outfits like most of these private forces this product is a dream come true. And it goes beyond PFs. This is the ultimate weapon, the forbidden fruit for anyone with an enemy to fight and people to defend.

Venom Snake: A nuclear deterrent.

Ocelot: Exactly. Sounds familiar, huh? PFs are all operating off your playbook. You created these types. But could this be the new weapon in Africa that Emmerich talked about? If it is, why is Cipher letting anyone and his brother get their hands on one? And what comes next? Selling nuclear weapons to the open? Making them public property?

Venom Snake: Why don't they give that a try? Then the next war really will be fought with sticks.

Ocelot: Right. The man we're dealing with isn't foolish enough to make a suicide pact with the world.

Venom Snake: So what is Cipher really up to?

Africa Today [3]

Private Force: Zero Risk Security

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Zero Risk Security aren't as hardcore a military outfit compared to the other two PFs in the region. The company sends operators to conflict regions around the world, not just Africa. They have decades of combined experience.They're also based out of South Africa. Their headquarters is in Johannesburg. A lot of their work involves corporate security for South African companies, but a good number of their operators are retired South African military. So don't mistake them for a bunch of security guards.

Africa Today [4]

Private Force: Rogue Coyote

Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: Rogue Coyote operates mainly out of Africa these days. Of the three PFs, they're the smallest. However, they scooped up most of the Rhodesian SAS after the country collapsed four years ago. Picture their entire organization as one big special forces unit. With Rhodesia a British colony, the Rhodesian SAS had its origins 22 SAS, C Squadron. They started out as a group known as the Southern Rhodesia Volunteers, but in '51 they were incorporated into 22 SAS as members of the British Commonwealth, and deployed to fight guerrillas in the Malayan Emergency. Even now, 22 SAS keeps the "C" squadron designation empty in recognition of their service. In a way, you could say the SAS almost makes up the core of Rogue Coyote. Later on, they were bolstered by other talent including former Selous Scouts and 32 Battalion. These guys are direct descendants of some of the best special forces in the world. They won't go down without a fight. Don't get careless.

Kungenga Mine and the Ethnic Clash

Miller: Kungenga Mine. A civil war's been going on in that region for the last 20 years. It's being fought by what are now two ethnic groups: the Bhuta and the Mbele. Originally, you could barely tell them apart, but the reason for the current armed conflict goes back to World War 1. After the war, their land was colonized by a European power and it decided to give local control to the Bhuta. That split the two groups into rulers and subjects. The friction between them remained even after they won independence from Europe. The Bhuta are holding on to power to this day and the Mbele rebels continue to fight back. The conflict is funded by locally mined gold, rare metals, diamonds... they've used the money from those to arm themselves, buy oil, and even hire PFs. The Bhuta administration owns the mining rights to Kungenga Mine, but most of the laborers are Mbele who they've taken prisoner. The product they've gouged out of their land is bought up by cheap Western corporations and the civil war is fueled by the profits. That's how it goes. One country's people is split apart by another country. Then the two groups tear up their own land for money in order to fight each other. Now this civil war started by a foreign power is the norm, and it's sucking up the country's resources. PFs are just the same: they follow the money, taking war with them wherever they go. That goes for us, too. It's an endless river of bloody retaliation and we're standing downstream. Should we make a stand and staunch the flow? Or wade in amongst the corpses and make a bigger splash than the rest? We'll follow your lead, Boss.

The Factory of the Dead

The Bedridden in the Factory

Miller: Boss, about those invalids you saw in that "devil's house"...
Venom Snake: Poor bastards. All strapped down to the beds, with those lumps on their chests.
Miller: The medical staff tell me they were probably a type of cyst.
Snake: Cysts can get that big?
Miller: In some cases, yes, but... Supposing they're a kind of atheroma forming on the surface of the skin, the size is just too big, and the appearance is all wrong. In the end, the Medical Team were at a loss. Those lumps were like nothing they'd ever seen. The fluid you said you got on your prosthesis when you touched one was burned off in the fighting... And the factory burned down too. None of the tests we did once you were back at the base revealed a pathogen that could have caused them. Meaning we don't have a single sample to work with.
Snake: Everything went up in flames...
Miller: What worries the Medical Team most is whether it's contagious. Whether there's a chance we could end up like that.
Snake: And?
Miller: Mother Base's sanitation control has always been strict. After all, war is great at transporting diseases. For the time being at least, there's no sign of contagion or any symptoms that could be related.

Analysis of the Voices in the Factory

Miller: One more thing - about the surgery that had been performed on the people in the "devil's house."

Venom Snake: Yeah?

Miller: You said that their throats were cut open, with an acoustic tube pushed inside.

Snake: Yeah. The tubes were hooked up to tape recorders, playing some kind of audio.

Miller: Well, we picked up some of that audio through your radio transmissions and recorded it here. The Intel Team has been working on analyzing the communications log.

Snake: What have they found?

Miller: There's nothing tying the contents together. We've got... a report on three deaths on the autoroute near Marseille, protests outside the Libyan embassy in London, a press conference with the former Prime Minister of Sweden, a four-month old weather forecast for Balikpapan... and then commercials for appliances, cough syrup, and TV dinners. Assuming they're not all staged, they come off as recordings of your average public broadcasts.

Snake: Public broadcasts? Just radio and TV signals?

Miller: Yes, and from all over the world. We're looking into whether they're genuine or not, just to be sure. What else... A speech that sounded like it was recorded out on the street, and people chatting about how well this year's tomato crop did.

Snake: And there's nothing they have in common?

Miller: We're partway through the cryptanalysis. That includes checking all audio ranges, and running it backwards and at different speeds. Then there's vocabulary breakdown for political suggestions, ideological common points... but I don't think it's going to get us anywhere.

Snake: Where were the recordings made?

Miller: There's nothing linking them from that angle either. Just like you reported, we've detected virtually every language there is - French, German, Italian... Spanish, including South American accents. Then there's Russian, Hindi, Arabic, Portugese, Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese...

Snake: They're nothing if not thorough...

Miller: (heh) Well, I don't know if they've got them all covered. Ignoring the ones that have gone extinct, supposedly over 5,000 languages exist today. Besides, English isn't one of the ones we picked up.

Snake: Really? English?

Miller: I know. Only 5% of the world's population is a native English speaker, but when you factor in those who've acquired it as a second language, nearly one third of the people speak it. The world's dominant lingua franca. You've got to figure they had it somewhere among all the languages in that place.

Snake: No English...

Miller: Bear in mind we didn't hear everything that was played in that room. We couldn't isolate the more distant sounds due to static, and the, well, the "program" could have been set to change every day. In a nutshell, for reasons unknown, people in that room with a common medical condition were made to listen to recordings in languages from around the world. It's not clear how the growths on their chests fit into it. It could have been a treatment for them, or an experiment of some kind.

Snake: I'm guessing one person knows.

Miller: Yeah - Skull Face. He was there. The only thing we can say for sure is that he's involved.

The Man on Fire [1]

The Man on Fire's Weakness

Ocelot: Snake, I wanted to ask you about the man on fire. What do you remember from the hospital? Anything we can use?
Snake: Well, he took off the moment the sprinklers started up.
Ocelot: Sprinklers - the fire system?
Snake: And when he got sprayed by water from a burst pipe, it slowed him down.
Ocelot: ... When he escaped on horseback, he wouldn't cross the river either.
Snake: And then it started to rain... and he disappeared.
Ocelot: Water against fire? Is it that simple? [I mean] It makes sense, it's just hard to believe it would work on a guy like that.

The Man on Fire [2]

What Happened Next with the Man on Fire

Ocelot: You mentioned that the Man on Fire was crushed under Sahelanthropus in its hangar.

Snake: Yeah. He was caught under the wheels of its transport platform.

Ocelot: Ah. But his body wasn't found.

Snake: What?

Ocelot: We searched the area the moment we arrived but there was no trace of him.

Snake: I wasn't hallucinating.

Ocelot: I know, I trust you on that. That means someone must've taken the body. But when I got there, everything was still as it was. Even Skull Face hadn't been touched. I can't see a reason to sneak into a place like that and drag out the biggest, heaviest guy there.

Snake: What are you getting at?

Ocelot: The only option left is he got up and walked away.

Snake: [testily] That platform ran him over.

Ocelot: Just ran him over...

Snake: You're saying that's not enough?

Ocelot: I don't want to believe it, but maybe not. He shrugs off bullets, even rocket strikes. There's no reason to think that wouldn't finish him. It seems ridiculous, but... I'll start gathering eyewitness accounts just in case.

Snake: If you dig up anything concrete I want to know.

Ocelot: You'll be the first... if I dig anything up. But I hope to hell I don't.

Snake: No kidding.

The Man on Fire [3]

The Man on Fire

Ocelot: Volgin, the GRU colonel, was burned alive with the Shagohod during Operation Snake Eater 20 years ago. Despite suffering severe burns to his entire body, he still clung to life. After you left Tselinoyarsk, Volgin's body was taken to a research institute in the outskirts of Moscow. Modern medicine couldn't explain why he was still alive, not that the Colonel was any ordinary man to begin with... that constant electric current he had running through his body, that he could unleash at will... to be honest, I was always uncomfortable around him, thought I might get electrocuted just by standing nearby. The institute studying him was tasked with investigating and developing human paranormal abilities. The comatose Volgin was used to further the Soviet Union's research into such abilities. But not long ago, the facility burned to the ground and Volgin's body was never found among the rubble, even though the fire started in the room where they were keeping him. This occurred at around the same time you woke up. If Skull Face was right, and a thirst for revenge can turn a man into a demon, and keep the dead alive, then this "Man on Fire" who's been coming after us ever since you woke up, well, that might just be what's left of our old friend Volgin. It's not over yet. Back in '64, in Tselinoyarsk, you brought his plans for a utopia down in flames. That grudge is what's keeping him alive.

Who is the Floating Boy?

Ocelot: The day the research facility holding Volgin burned down, a Soviet jumbo passenger jet happened to crash nearby, far away to the north of that hospital in Cypress. Onboard the plane was a young boy who was being studied at the same facility. The plane fell to earth from over 8,000 feet, but the boy's body was the only one not recovered. At almost exactly the same time as the crash, Volgin awoke in that facility. According to the research institute's documents, the gifts this boy demonstrated included psychokinesis and telepathy. To protect his mind from being inundated with other people's thoughts, he always wore a kind of gas mask. A rudimentary form of psychic insulation, apparently. We don't know where this boy is, but if Skull Face is connected to him, we may cross paths with him yet. This boy is part of a new age where nothing we understand about the world makes sense anymore. Don't let your guard down.

The White Mamba [1]

White Mamba (Nyoka ya Mpembe)

Miller: "The White Mamba." Nyoka ya Mpembe. He's the commander of the kids based out of Bwala ya Masa. As you know, Contract Forces of Africa were stationed at that village. Anti-government forces hired ZRS to bring kids from around Africa there for training. But at some point the adults with the PF started dropping like flies. This was right after we arrived in Africa; we don't know the cause. The kids ended up on their own, must've been like fish out of water. Nothing to eat, no way to get back home. All the adults taught them was how to use a gun. Sure, they could shoot targets, but hunt for food? Not likely. They wouldn't have lasted long. Then The White Mamba showed up. He was faster and stronger than them, a better soldier, and he knew how to lead. I guess somebody wished upon a star, 'cause their savior turned up like stardust straight out of the blue. The moment he arrived, the kids had their new commander. That was when they started attacking other villages. Word of the infamous White Mamba spread fast, but it isn't just his combat skills that got people talking. As you can tell from the name, he's the only light-skinned kid in the unit. Not to mention the blond hair and the blue eyes--not common in those parts. We have no idea where he came from or what he's experienced. The kid's a huge blank. But I'm sure you'll know him when you see him. One other thing: he's still a kid, so don't kill him. Be careful not to hit him with anything lethal. Not even a flesh wound.

DDR (The Problems with Social Reintegration)

Miller: Our mission objective isn't just suppressing a bunch of militants: this is a DDR operation of the kids in that unit. DDR stands for "Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration." "Disarmament" is obvious; we take their weapons off their hands. The "demobilization" part means dismantling their military organization to ensure they can't arm themselves again. To do that, you need to capture the unit's commander and have him order his men to disband. In this case, the commander is The White Mamba. There's nobody above him, so he's all we need to grab. Finally, "reintegration." Through education and occupational training, we give them a means to live besides war. A lot of kids born in a war zone don't know any other way to live, so before they find themselves back there, we teach them another skill. I'd like to establish this rehabilitation process at Mother Base. That's why we're bringing those kids back here. It's not so much for their sake; it's for the world that we're trying to create, no other way about it. Those kids are amateurs--bad for business to have them running around where we're trying to work. Bring them all back, if possible, or as many as you can.

The White Mamba [2]

The White Mamba Detained

Miller: We've placed the White Mamba and the rest of his unit in the staff living quarters.

Snake: How's that going?

Miller: It's a disaster, but what else can we do? We've taken away his weapons and banned him from using his nom de guerre. Apparently his real name is Eli. He must feel like we've stripped him of his whole identity. We'll let things simmer down. I've put a guard on him for now. Still the question is, who is he? Where did he come from, and how has he survived?

Snake: He's still not talking.

Miller: No. He won't say a word about himself. But you know, it looks like he speaks English. One of the deck crew called out to him in English, and he said something back. He just lost it all of a sudden, started mouthing off at the guy, in perfect English. He wasn't stringing together words he picked up somewhere.

Snake: So English is his mother tongue.

Miller: He could be from the east or the south, or maybe even further north or south. English is well-established in countries all across the continent. It's rooted in Africa like a weed... or maybe "parasite" is the better word. So just speaking English doesn't help us figure out where he comes from.

Snake: Could he even be from off-continent?

Miller: Right. In any case, we'll keep an eye on him. If we learn anything else I'll be sure to let you know.

The White Mamba [3]

Eli's DNA Test

Ocelot: Boss, we've got the results of Eli's genetic tests. We can finally put this worry behind us.

Miller: We used the PCR technique and conducted DNA fingerprinting of the copied DNA sequences. Neither is mainstream science yet, but the concepts and procedures are sound. Both tests say there is 0% that the two of you are blood relatives. Meaning, the results are negative. He's not your son, nor is he your clone. He's just another person.

Ocelot: It was 12 years ago that Zero made plans to clone you. Eli's age and appearance certainly are a good fit. I admit the first time I saw him I did a double take, but it looks like we were worried for nothing. Eli isn't your clone. Though you might still have one somewhere out there.

Miller: But if Eli isn't the Boss's clone, why does he seem so obsessed with him? Not to mention having one hell of an attitude for his age.

Ocelot: I don't know - learning the truth about himself, cursing the fact that he's a clone, bearing a grudge against selfish adults and coming to hate who he was cloned from - Big Boss. If that were really the case, I could understand it, I might even feel a bit sorry for him.

Miller: (hm)

Ocelot: But no clone could have a totally different DNA fingerprint. And the tests left no room for error. You yourself were there when we drew Eli's blood sample.

Miller: Come to think of it... when we went to OKB Zero, he'd snuck onto a chopper and was there.

Ocelot: Yeah.

Miller: He was acting strange even then - or actually from a little before that time.

Ocelot: That was exactly when we began these tests.

Miller: Maybe he suspected something when we drew the sample. Not knowing what we were doing to him... and becoming mistrustful of us.

Ocelot: Hard to say. Eli's had an attitude problem from day one.

Miller: So what is he, then?

Ocelot: If he's going to tell us that himself, we'll need to get him to open up more first.

Vocal Cord Parasites [1]

Preventing Symptoms

Ocelot: About the pathogen spreading through Mother Base: you've seen everything we've got on the outbreak. What's your opinion?

Code Talker: Textbook symptoms of vocal cord parasite infestation. And judging from this casualty list, it is the Kikongo strain, meaning a breed of parasite that triggers symptoms upon detecting pronunciations specific to Kikongo.

Miller: So our Kikongo-speaking staff are at risk.

Code Talker: Quite so.

Ocelot: Hmm. He's right. All the victims do speak Kikongo.

Miller: So they can survive if they just use another language?

Code Talker: There is no guarantee you're only dealing with the Kikingo strain. Other language strains may be present. You well know he was teaching them languages from all over the world.

Ocelot: The Devil's House. "Nzoyo ya Badiabulu.

Code Talker: There is no way to know how many strains he has at his disposal.

Miller: So how do we keep them from becoming symptomatic? You mentioned using microbes.

Code Talker: Use this: a type of Wolbachia introduced to a sample of the parasite.

Ocelot: Wolbachia?

Code Talker: A parasitic bacteria that colonizes the parasites, turning male to female, and preventing copulation. You must cultivate more. What have you done with infected bodies?

Miller: Cremated to stop the spread of infection, but we did keep a few for study.

Code Talker: Good. Take this sample, grind it to a pulp, and introduce it to the larvae now nesting in the dead. The Wolbachia will multiply rapidly within those larvae.

Miller: They're soldiers, not some petri dish!

Code Talker: Conventional cultivation methods will take too long. Extract the Wolbachia from those larvae and vaccinate your men. Kikongo speakers first. This is the fastest, shortest way. No one is to speak a word of Kikongo until the Wolbachia are safely inside them. I will instruct your medical staff in detail onsite. You have the appropriate facilities?

Miller: Yes.

Code Talker: Do not worry. I made a pact with your bidee' hólóni. On the honor of the Diné. I speak no lies.

Miller: Keep an eye on him.

Ocelot: Will do. Follow me, I'll take you to the Medical Team.

The Vocal Cord Parasites' Infection Route

Code Talker: Now, we must wait for the Wolbachia to multiply in the larvae.

Ocelot: How is the disease transmitted? If it's carried by insects or rodents, then...

Code Talker: There is no intermediate host.

Ocelot: So...

Code Talker: The vocal cord parasites lay their eggs in the larynx of the host. Most hatch and migrate to the lungs, but some are transported to the mouth through ciliary movement, mixing in with saliva.

Miller: Saliva. Droplet transmission.

Ocelot: Sneezing, coughing, any food or water containing infected saliva. It would spread fast.

Code Talker: Indeed. And when the larvae migrate to the lungs, symptoms can resemble the early stages of a cold, making it easy to infect others.

Ocelot: Meaning a simple conversation would be enough to pass it on.

Miller: All right, so, what happens when the larvae migrate to the lungs?

Code Talker: It is as I said before. They mature by feeding on alveolar tissue. It is only then that noticeable symptoms appear in the host.

Ocelot: And by that point it's too late, he's infected everyone else. It's one hell of a weapon you've created.

Code Talker: That is what Bilagáana wanted, something that would spread easily. (sighs) In truth, he is not the reason... but we will discuss that another time.

Resisting the Vocal Cord Parasites

Miller: The Wolbachia have multiplied. We're preparing to extract them and begin vaccinating. But... [sighs] is this really the only way? Sure, it'll prevent infection, but the cost...

Code Talker: You would rather remove their vocal cords?

Miller: No. Tactical communication's the linch pin of what we do.

Ocelot: What if we were to ban the use of Kikongo?

Code Talker: Insufficient. First, there is no guarantee that only the Kikongo strain is here. Second, there is the matter of how the parasites lay their eggs. Before they can copulate, they must be exposed to the pronunciation of a specific language for a period of time. Like a container filling with water, but the duration between when the container is full and when the copulation actually begins, varies from case to case. In other words, even if the infected stop speaking, as a countermeasure, it may already be too late. The only true solution is to prevent copulation through the Wolbachia, or by physically removing the affected tissue.

Ocelot: Eh...

Miller: Do any anti-parasitics work?

Code Talker: It sounds as though you have already tried.

Miller: Yeah. We tried every one there is, and... nothing.

Code Talker: I have yet to find a medicine that can remove the parasites. At best it temporarily covers their ears--

Ocelot: Why's that?

Code Talker: Because the parasites are... companions... to us. To remove them inevitably harms the host.

Miller: Companions?

Code Talker: More than you think. And this is why the human immune system cannot eliminate them.

Vocal Cord Parasites [2]

The First Infection

Miller: We've inoculated the staff with Wolbacchia to keep them from becoming symptomatic. 

Code Talker: [hm] That should also contain the infection.

Ocelot: How did this happen in the first place?

Miller: It has to have been a Cipher spy within our ranks.

Code Talker: If this is so, then why the Kikongo strain? If their intent was to wipe you out..."

Ocelot: Skull Face said the remaining English parasite was close to the Boss. If this latest strain was his doing, he wouldn't have tipped his hand. 

Code Talker: It's possible someone brought eggs onto the base, without them knowing. Stuck to their shoes, clothing...

Ocelot: That makes the most sense to me. 

Miller: Then where did the eggs come from?

Code Talker: You mentioned that your Boss visited Nzo ya Badiabulu.

Miller: Sure. But his gear was disinfected immediately upon return. 

Code Talker: [hm] Then he was not the carrier. 

Miller: And not just the Boss. All staff dispatched on high-risk missions were quarantined on their way back.When the symptoms first appeared, we checked and disinfected all equipment used up to that point.  Any and all prisoners, soldiers, materials and animals extracted during missions were also quarantined. 

Ocelot: So that just leaves...

Code Talker: I have seen children around here...Where are they from?

Miller: All over. Some  were being held hostage at a mine, then there were the troublemakers at Bwala ya Masa...

Code Talker: Bwala ya Masa?! 

Miller: Yeah...

Code Talker: Their clothes... their things. Did you burn them?

Miller: They're just kids. We couldn't...Not one of em's shown symptoms.

Code Talker: The parasites don't affect prepubescent hosts. Their vocal cords are not fully developed...!

Ocelot: If infection doesn't occur in children...

Code Talker: It is possible they carried eggs on their clothes, and the infection spread from them.

Miller: The the kids' stuff.

[footsteps]

Code Talker: I doubt there's any trace left by now...

Miller: But if there is...Some of these kids must be close to hitting puberty. How could we have missed this?!

Experiment in Africa

Ocelot: The name "Bwala ya Masa" got quite a reaction from you. I'm guessing the Kikongo strain was released in that village?

Code Talker: Cipher used that region to experiment with vocal cord parasite transmission. The Kikongo strain. The settlements around the refinery upstream of Bwala ya Masa were the proving grounds. They would infect one villager, then record transmission speed. Dangerous work. If they failed to contain the infecion, it would slip into the surrounding regions...

Ocelot:..At which point the world found out about the parasites, making them useless as a weapon. Incredible they'd risk such a thing.

Code Talker: The test site was densely populated, too. A terrible place for such experiments. No dout they thought burning everything would wipe away all traces. The settlements were covered in oil anyway. Who would wonder if one day they caught fire? And so it did. They burned it all, living and dead.

Miller: Those remains...

Code Talker: But they miscalculated. Transmission speed was far faster than anticipated. It may have been the temperature, or hygiene standards, or perhaps the parasites reacted quickly to Kikongo...Whatever the reason, nearly all [the] villagers were swiftly infected and the settlements reduced to mounts of corpses. Making matters worse, the dry season was ending. When it came time to burn the village, the Munene River had swelled. Many of the bodies were waterlogged...

Ocelot: ...Meaning they didn't burn completely.

Code Talker: The corpses stilll contain viable eggs, and the larvae washed downsteam...And when the people downstream drank the water...

Ocelot: That marked he end for Bwala ya Masa.

Code Talker: I learned all of this at the mansion. I warned him of the risk - of eggs getting out.

Ocelot:...And?

Code Talker: "We are prepared for any eventuality".

Miller: I get it...

Code Talker: Hm?

Miller: Putting the oil field back online. The oil leaks....SANR...They planned to pollute the river, prevent the spread of infection....

Ocelot: But the oil flow was stopped. And downstream, the pople of Bwala ya Masa started using the water again...The PF soldiers deployed at the village were locals - spoke Kikongo. They were infected, the kids survived.

Miller: I've heard enough.

Ocelot: And who stopped the flow of oil...?

Miller: Don't...

Ocelot: We did.

Miller: [cough]

Code Talker: That confirms it. The source of the Kikongo strain infection was Masa village. And the children brought it here. It is no-one's fault. There is no blame to be cast.

Experiment in Afghanistan

Ocelot: The parasites...They were tested in other regions?

Code Talker: Their physiology requires that they be tested under varied conditions Another test side was in Afghanistan.

Ocelot: So it was the parasites there.

Code Talker: Both the Pashtun and Tajik languages are spoken in the mountains of Afghanistan. And population density is low. Ideal testing for how accurately the parasites target only the specified language. It is also relatively easy to prevent the spread of infection.

Ocelot: And the results?

Code Talker: The first test, I am told, was a success. Once the Pashtun Mujahideen were infected with the Pashto strain, they were all but wiped out.

Ocelot: The Hamid fighters at Smasei fort...

Code Talker: it was doubly successful: no Tajik Mujahideen or Soviet soldiers became symptomatic.

Ocelot: So the parasites proved to be effective. What about the second test?

Code Talker: Also supposedly a success. A Pashtun village was the target. However, the original plan was to obtain samples of the infected.In this they failed.

Ocelot: And the village...?

Code Talker: The Soviets enacted a standard 'scorched earth' operation.

Ocelot: That must have been the village where Malak lived...before being held captive at Lamar Khaate Palace.

Code Talker: Having had more time to think on it, the details shared with me may have been false. They are madmen, who would do anything to cover up the truth.

Oceot: They certainly seem to like tossing their problems in the fire.

Code Talker: As a boy, Skull Face's life went up in flames...Perhaps that is what fuels his fixation with fire.

Effects of the Wolbachia

Miller: Your "Wolbachia" stopped the infection all right, but I still don't get it. How can a few bacteria change males to females? I know they're only bugs, but...

Code Talker: It is not such a rare thing in the natural world. Many insects and nematodes are infected with Wolbachia.

Miller: But why?

Code Talker: They nest in the cell cytoplasm of the host. Even in the egg cells. With the result that the offspring are born infected.

Ocelot: Mother-to-child transmission.

Code Talker: However, Wolbachia cannot nest in sperm because they do not have cytoplasm. So even a successful infection of a male ends after a single generation. This means the Wolbachia must resort to maximizing the population of infected females.

Ocelot: Sounds like an ethnic cleansing campaign on a tiny scale.

Code Talker: Gender change from male to female is their survival tactic.

Ocelot: So more females means more Wolbachia carriers, so it can Keep thriving in the following generations.

Miller: But the parasites in a human host are supposed to be a mating pair. If there's no male, there'll be no offspring at all. It's killing itself.

Code Talker: Slow down. This tactic is intended for Environments where a single male can copulate with multiple females. Originally, the Wolbachia did not infect the vocal cord parasites. I created a mutated strain, modifying the Wolbachia so that it could infect "monogamous" pairs. The Wolbachia's greatest multiplying tactic - the male-to-female change worked against itself in the monogamous parasites. Just as you said. Then, I performed repeated selections of Wolbachia strains until I achieved a 100% certainty of male-to-female conversion.

Miller: Creating female-female pairs, unable to reproduce.

Ocelot: And you say the Wolbachia affects the host of the host, that is us, cuttingoff our means to reproduce?

Code Talker: It is almost certain. Of course, we will not turn female. After all, mammals possess no natural gender changing function. But some Wolbachia strains can cause cytoplasmic incompatibility in the host.

Miller: Is that some cell deformity?

Code Talker: Put simply, it means the altered sperm of infected males kill the female's egg on contact.

Ocelot: And that's happened to us...?

Code Talker: Yes...and yet, what occurs in humans is not just simple CI. To date there are no cases of Wolbachia affecting humans. The fact that this strain causes this effect... Is it the vocal cords parasites' affinity with humans? [hmm] I do not know enough to say for sure.

Ocelot: So the parasite warps the host. It reminds me of what Skull Face said.

Code Talker: It is the way of all organisms to create their own optimal environment. Just look at you and this base. Organisms that cannot do this are doomed to extinction. The difference with parasite sis that their "environment" is another organism. That creates a connection between life and life. Parasitism, symbiosis, or death. In this way, the host too is challenged to adapt.

Vocal Cord Parasites [3]

The Devil's House

Ocelot: So what where they doing at Nzo ya Badiabulu, that facility with all the People laid out in rows?

Miller: The abandoned factory Shabani was held in...

Code Talker: It is precisely as you guessed. Bilagáana was coding languages into the vocal cord parasites. They infected the subjects with the parasites, then made an incision in the throat to expose the vocal cords. That allowed them to play recordings of the desired language directly to the parasites.

Miller: And the parasites learned the languages that way? That's some teaching method.I just don't get how a bunch of bugs can have the brain power for it.

Code Talker: They don't. Do not judge them by human Standards, they do not learn as a function of intellect.

Ocelot: Then how do they do it?"

Code Talker: What language the parasites react to is coded into their genes. You could expose the Japanese strain to English for years, and it would never "learn" the language and react to it. The pronunciation, rhythm and structure are different. But what about, say Spansh and Portuguese. Linguistically the two are very close.

Ocelot: Yeah, they're both Ibero-Romance languages.

Code Talker: Even so, a Spanish mating pair exposed to Portuguese will not copulate. Only when they hear Spanish. Only then. And the majority of their offspring will be the same.

Miller: So it's a literal case of "a mother tongue".

Ocelot: But if that's so, I don't see how the different strains can be created in the first place.

Code Talker: Well, among the many thousands of offspring there may be just a few that react to Portuguese.

Ocelot: You're talking about mutations.

Code Talker: Correct. Playing the tapes helpes to identify the Mutant strains. Those specimens are then isolated and bred with one another. From their children, specimen's that react more strongly to Portuguese can again be selected and bred. Repeating this process creates a strain that reacts solely to Portuguese and never to Spanish. Mutation and selection. No different to breeding roses.

Ocelot: So you kept increasing the Change over the Generations, adapting them to languages from all over the world. Must have taken a hell of a lot of patience.

Miller: More like patients - Just how may died for this?!

Ocelot: There's something I still don't get. In order to tell whhich larvae will react to Portuguese, you'd have to let them develop and then see which copulate. That means you'd Need tens of thousands of guinea pigs.There's no way you could do that in a facility that small.

Code Talker: For normal selective breeding methods, you would be right. But there is a more effective selection method when Training the vocal cord parasites.

Miller: Go on.

Code Talker: It is not only when mating that the parasites listen for language. Shortly before hatching, larvae display markedly increased activity in reaction to a particular language.The active eggs can be identified under a black light. So the eggs that react to Portuguese are selectively placed in the throats of subjects. So you see, narowing down strains that react to the target language is an effective process. Though I'm sure that even so, many lost their lives to create the various strains.

Miller: Taken against their will into that...that dungeon...

Code Talker: There are two reasons for playing the tapes for the parasites. One, to Isolate the eggs that respond to the target language. And two, to cause the specimens raised from the selected eggs to mate.

Ocelot: I get how the system works.But why do they respond to language before they even hatch? It's not like they can mate from inside an egg.

Code Talker: It is because the larvae learn the language before hatching.

The Vocal Cord Parasites' Language Learning Ability

Miller: You mentioned that what language the parasites respond to is hard-coded into their genes. And that they don't have the brain power to actually learn a language. But then you say that the larvae at Nzo ya Badiabulu were learning the languages in the egg...your story doesn't add up.

Code Talker: Your country is home to a unique songbird, the Japanese bush warbler.

Miller: Sure. What of it?

Code Talker: What a beautiful call it has. But no bush warbler can sing it perfectly at the start. As chicks, they can barely chirp at all. They must learn from their parents and other adult birds. Only then can they sing properly and attract females. So naturally, there are individual differences in each bird's call. Though they start on the same footing, each bird is influenced by its teachers.

Miller: And the parasites are the same?

Code Talker: Like the birds, the parasites have a genetic predisposition toward a perticular language.But while in the egg, the larvae's "ears" are tweaked by listening to the voice of the host. This tweaking ensures that the grown parasites will react better to the host's speech pattern.

Ocelot: Why would they have an ability like that?

Code Talker: Well, there are distinct regional differences within even the same language.Rare is the language that has no unique dialects. Yes? Learning the host's speech pattern before hatching attunes the larvae to whatever twists of pronounciation it will encounter. This adaptive ability is what makes them so formidable.

Ocelot: I see...So a language requires selective breeding, but the parasites can learn dialects by themsleves...

Code Taker: Of course, having the egg-stage larvae listen to the tapes in that factory was not meant to teach them. It was more important to use that trait of theirs to identify the mutated strains. As I mentioned earlier.

Miller: Is that really accurate enough to use as a weapon? You could wipe out a neighbouring ethnic group by accident if their pronunciation is too close.

Code Talker: What you say is true - in that sense they are Imperfect as "ethnic cleansers".But for HIS purposes, they were good enough. His objective was not to eliminate any one ethnic Group, but to render the world's lingua franca - English - inert.

Sahelanthropus [1]

OKB Zero

Ocelot: About this OKB Zero Emmerich was talking about. Its location and features match the citadel in the mountains northeast of the Soviet Base Camp. Built during the time of Alxander the Great, it was left in ruins following one of Genghis Khan's campaigns. Its occupants changed time and time again due to war, and it was expanded on more than one occasion. Ultimately, in fell into the hands of the Soviet Philosophers. The Soviet Army was using it as the headquarters of its Afghan invasion force. But it would seem that Skull FaceÄs connection with the Philosophers gave him license to develop Sahelanthropus there. And that's what Emmerich was doing at the place... before he got the axe. But "OKB" is a designation the Soviets use for weapon design bureaus. There's no way they'd have one of those in Afghanistan. And in principle, the numbers that folow "OKB" are always integers above "1". There is no Zero. Perhaps this was a secret facility of the Soviet and Chinese Philosophers dating back prior to World War II... Though it's more likely Skull Face just picked a fake name that more or less fit the Soviets' pattern.He doesn't go there often, but he sure as hell won't miss this. They use the heliport on top of the tower for his visits. Start by heading for the heliport. Then wait for your chance to make contact with Skull Face.

Sahelanthropus's Armor Material 1

Miller: It seems Sahelanthropus' armor is made from depleted uranium. That offers some serious protection. The U.S. military's planning on using it for its main battle tanks too. Maybe that's where Emmerich got the technology.

Venom Snake: Uranium? They're using nuclear fuel for armor now?

Miller: No, what they use for nuclear fuel is uranium -235, which is extracted from natural uranium. Depleted uranium is a by-product of that process. Sort of like the leftovers, I guess. The garbage. Uranium -235 makes up 0.72% of natural uranium, whereas depleted uranium contains only 0.2%.

Venom Snake: What are the benefits of using it for armor?

Miller: It's a pretty short list. Uranium's a heavy metal, like lead. Meaning, it can hold a greater amount of kinetic energy. But it also boasts a hardness closer to tungsten. That makes it an ideal material to use for, let's say, armor-piercing ammunition penetrators.But it's not the best choice for armor. Its volume is less than that of ceramis, but for an equal weight, you end up with less protection.

Venom Snake: So why use it, then?

Miller: According to Emmerich, it cam down to him being unable to source ceramics technology from a manufacturer. Plus, given that it's an upright, walking vehicle, he wanted to reduce the bulk of certain areas. Despite all that, depleted uranium still makes for some tough armor. And Emmerich says, it's been proven in live-fire tests - it stops most Soviet tank shells.

Sahelanthropus [2]

Sahelanthropus's Armor Material 2

Miller: Emmerich didn't go with depleted uranium for Sahelanthropus' armor because of its strength.

Venom Snake: He had nukes in mind.

Miller: Exactly. It's meant to use its body as a fuel component for a nuclear weapon. Sahelanthropus uses built-in uranium enrichment archaea to melt its own body and extract uranium-235 from the depleted uranium in its armor. Those arachea perform the enrichment in an extremely short time. The concentration jumps by a factor of several 100, from 0.2% to over 90%. The end result being highly enriched, weapons grade uranium. Sahelanthropus' body itself becomes a nuclear bomb. Emmerich says if it were to self-destruct, the nuclear yield would be somewhere in the region of 15 kilotons. Since you need about 50 kilograms of highly enriched uranium to trigger a nuclear reaction, that would mean Sahelathropus contains something like 23 tons of depleted uranium.

Venom Snake: That's not very much.

Miller: No, it isn't. That's about what you'd expect to find in a main battle tank's armor. The point is it can be transported anywhere, even use its conventional warfare on the battlefield, and the international community will never suspect a thing.

Sahelanthropus [3]

The Captured Sahelanthropus

Miller: I've just received word from the R&D team and the transport team out of Afghanistan. They've finished installing Sahelanthropus on the base . It's ours now.

Venom Snake: All right. Don't let any of the staff touch that thing - especially Emmerich.

Miller: Of course. That guy's crush on Sahelanthropus is beyond a joke. Guess he really wants to see his tech stand on its own two legs this time.

Venom Snake: That's not gonna happen.

Miller: I know it. So, you've got no plans to make it operational again?

Venom Snake: Damn right.

Miller: ...Boss, I want to hear it straight from you.

Venom Snake: Hear what?

Miller: What the hell do you want with that thing? The drive is busted, it's not like it has a nuke on board... Even if the metallic archaea could turn it into a nuclear weapon, all it can do is self-destruct. Sahelanthropus just isn't a weapon anymore. It'll draw unwanted attention without even being a deterrent.

Venom Snake: I know.

Miller: The weapon's development sank two feet under that thing's weight. That's one year's drop in a single night. We've started on reinforcing the strut, but there's no guarantee it will hold up if a storm hits.

Venom Snake: I know that, too.

Miller: Boss, why keep it?

Venom Snake: It's a mark.

Miller: A...

Venom Snake: Us Diamond Dogs, we don't have a country to call home, that means we have no past, nothing to prove that we lived. Everyone of us threw it all away when we came here. Sahelanthropus is a symbol that the likes of us brought at least one crisis to its end.

Miller: A mark in history...So we can't just fade away...

Venom Snake: It's of no practical use to us, but we still need it.

Miller: A symbol of what we've done... I'm glad I sounded you out on this. Snake, on behalf of all of us, I want to thank you.

Venom Snake: I don't need gratitude - I need security. Keep Emmerich away from that thing.

Miller: Roger that.

Metallic Archaea [1]

What Are Metallic Archaea?

Ocelot: Code Talker. What are the metallic archaea?

Code Talker: ...Volcanic craters spewing sulphur. Water hot enough to boil your skin off. Oceand ephts of 800 -plus atmospheres. Wastelands radioactive enough to kill you where you stand...There are Groups of organisms that survive despite - no, because of living in such environments.

Ocelot: I've heard about them. Extremo...something...

Code Talker: Extremophiles. By selecting certain species, then subculturing and repeatedly modifying them, I created a metallic offspring of pure archaea. They subsist on metals rather than organic matter.

Ocelot: And some of them even consume uranium?

Code Talker: Yes. Uranium enrichment archaea metabolize only uranium-235. As a result, they produce weapons-grade enriched uranium.

Miller: How is that possible?!

Code Talker: Consider how plants fractionate carbon isotopes when they conduct photosynthesis. Nature possesses abilities beyond our Imagination.

Ocelot: So it was archaea that brought down your chopper?

Code Talker: Corrosive archaea, yes. They oxidize metals, feeding off the energy in the electrons they receive. What became of the wreckage?

Ocelot: We had the R&D-Team retrieve samples for study - in, ah, airtight plastic Containers, of course.

Code Talker: Prudent, we shall extract archaea from it in good time. They should help you fight back agaisnt Bilagáana.

Ocelot: Any chance we could start now? It doesn't have to be a lot. I might just have another use for them.

Code Talker: If it's only a small amount you need.

Ocelot: That's fine. I'll get the R&D Team to assist. Let's go.

Nuclear Testing in South Africa

Miller: South Africa was previously suspected of developing nuclear weapons. It already had a "conspicuous" presence at the UN because of Apartheid and ist armed expensionism. But when neighboring Angola and Mozambique became socialist countries in '74, South Africa felt hounded into a corner. So it accelerated ist nuclear program to protect itself. Three years later, the Soviets discovered a test facility, and two years after that, an American satellite observed a flash in the Southern Indian Ocean. It's said this was South Africa conducting a nuclear test with the help of a certain ally. Skull Face used the situation in Africa to get this ally to lend a hand. They both wanted nukes, so it was a mutually beneficial relationship. On the Surface, anyway.

Ocelot: I figure South Africa started getting serious about nuclear weapons production in '75. In '74, the government was still able to get by with bluffing that it had a nuclear arsenal. But the year after, word spread that an Independent armed group in the Caribbean had was crushed by Cipher for possessing a WMD. That's right, Boss. What happened to you and your men was the reason South Africa. decided to push ahead with nuclear development. A force Independent of any Country getting ist Hand on a nuke...That was a threat to the existence of countries everywhere. It wasn't just South Africa. Your presence pushed a lot of countries to get nukes. The world was scared of you. You were a threat to more than just the Cold War. If nations are gears in a machine, you had the power to Smash them loose. and watch the whole world grind to a halt.

Metallic Archaea [2]

Emmerich's Power-Assisted Exo-Legs

Ocelot: Emmerich uses externally powered legs of his own design. It's bionics technology, a product of the U.S. military's failed attempt to develop a powered exoskeleton. All the wearer has to do is apply a little force and the actuators continue the movement in that direction. But his legs are unique. Instead of using a hyraulic mechanism, the actuators run off metallic archaea. That increases the actuators reaction speed, and also enables him to lock and release the joints at will. The legs are a nifty little gadget, but they have to clear weaknesses. First - they're dependent on external power, maybe because he built them knowing he couldn't leave his lab. There's no internal battery. That's why they won't work if they aren't plugged in. Second - and this is more than just a weakness - the legs are directly connected to his bones. Could be to minimize signal loss in the orders output to the legs and the drive response from them. Either way, Emmerich has used bolts to attach load baring parts directly to his femurs. Probably by mimicking surgical treatment for compound fractures and the like. But the end result is those legs and his body are fused together. And that appears to be why he's able to move them so precisely. But that also means that any shock to the legs would be delivered right to his bones by way of those bolts. The same is true if he encounters the corrosive metallic archaea. If the corrosive arachea ate into the exposed bolts, they'd reach the endoskeleton and eat through them too in the blink of an eye. The doctor's bones are full of holes to accommodate all the bolts. They're like sponges. If he were to lose the reinforcing parts, even the tiniest bit of force or weight would snap his bones. So when I dangled those metalli arachea in front of him, he realized straight away what would happen. Life wouldn't be worth living if he lost those legs of his. I'd bet THAT is what the doctor fears the most. I just helped him imagine what it would be like. Thanks to that, I got the information we needed without either of us getting hurt. You know how he is, he's probably already over the shock. The better you know your adversary, the easier it is for you to get information from them. And vice versa.

Metallic Archaea [3]

The "Safety Mechanism" of Nuclear Saturation

Ocelot: You said that the nukes Skull Face was trying to spread around the world were equipeed with a failsafe. Something that could shut them down at will...His will.

Code Talker: Quite so. After all, he needed a guarantee that a buyer wouldn't simply turn the weapons back on him.

Ocelot: So how can they be stopped?

Code Talker: The critical trigger - that is, the Detonator - is a complete black box design. Any attempt to dismantle it causes it to melt in seconds, using the corroding archaea. The desing ensures that no Detonation is possible unless he disengages the lock.

Ocelot: So he had a way to dismantle it remotely?

Code Talker: Precisely. The Client simply presses a button. At that Moment, the Detonator Begins Transmission with a surveillance satellite. The satellite Reports to him how the client is trying to se the nuke. If he does not object, the lock is disengaged.

Ocelot: But if it's a risk to him in any way...

Code Talker: The Detonator melts down. The same is true if detonation does not occur within preset time, after the lock is disengaged. The nuke is rendered useless.

Miller: Who the hell would buy something with strings attached like that?

Code Talker: The client would never know...until the Moment they actually try to use it. Most likely he would have explained the tme delay as the detonators needing time to activate. And, he only intended to sell to technologically primitive Groups in the first place.

Ocelot: Let me guess. He'd Claim it was defective and offer a replacement. Shadier than a used car salesman.

Code Talker: Skull Face shakes yourhand like a friend, using the other to control you like a puppet. This is how he works.

Metallic Archaea [4]

Uranium Enrichment Archaea

Ocelot: This is yellowcake that Cipher was having the PFs transport. Before we met you, the Boss recovered it from a truck crossing the savannah. Are there metallic archaea inside it?

Code Talker: Yes. The archaea metabolize the uranium 235 to subsist. They must be stored inside yellowcake, or they cannot survive.

Miller: So those biological traces we took for impurities were actually the real cargo.

Code Talker: Of course, they are deactivated so they don't trigger a sudden enrichment.They are like baker's yeast.Yet they gradually enrich the uranium as they feed.I imagine you detected weapons-grade traces?

Miller: Yeah, we did.

Ocelot: And the malachite that was loaded on the truck had traces of uranium in it too.

Snake: So that's the "flour", huh.

Ocelot: Skull Face was gonna sell do-it-yourself nuke kits.The uranium enriching archaea, complete with [a] user's manual. And the ores with the uranium could be sourced by the client or provided by Cipher...

Code Talker: Even the trace amounts buried in common ore can be enriched to weapons-grade uranium by the metallic archaea. Proving that must have been the most important factor of the trials. That and the ability to successfully prevent detonation.

Ocelot: So if the amounts of uranium in the ores are low enough, they can get past any inspection.And you only need a tiny amount of the archaea to act as the yeast. No great challenge to smuggle that either. The first step towards saturating the world with nukes...

Code Talker: His plan. That was not my intention.

Ocelot: Hm?

Code Talker: My only goal in developing the metallic archaea was to save the Diné.

Motive for Researching Metallic Archaea

Miller: What makes you think a tool for creating undetectable nuclear weapons would save your people?

Code Talker: After 70 years, the Diné reclaimed the Navajo Nation from which we were banished...We bore all the hardships of poverty, but we were proud to live off the land we called our own.But int he moment, the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, everything changed.

Miller: I don't get it...

Code Talker: The nuclear arms race between the U.S. and the Soviet Union began with the end of the Second World War. Suddenly, there was a massive demand for uranium, And it was our ill fortune that the ground beneath the Navajo Nation was rich with uranium ore. The bilagáana governemnt set up mine after mine, and many of the Diné worked them...Never informed of any danger. Every day they went to work with no protection. The slag was simply piled out in the open. When rain fell, uranium traces oleft behind would seep out, and when the ground dried, it was blown about as dust. Land and water were contaminated, irradiated, many of us became sick and died. That pain lives on to this day.

Miller: ...I had no idea.

Code Talker: Wanting more more than anything to revive the land my forebears left to me, I was delighted upon discovering microbes that "eat" uranium. If they could be domesticated, I believed, we could rid our land of uranium.

Miller: Were you successful?

Code Talker: No. The research called for funding on a colossal scale. But nobody was willing to invest with no prospect of a return.

Ocelot: And that's when Skull Face showed up...

Code Talker: Correct. "I can save you, and your people. We share the same will." That is what he said to me. And I believed him, the Bilagáana forced me to abandom my uranium cleanup work and focus on nuclear weapons. And...he held all the Diné hostage. Today, the uranium mines within the reservation are finally closing down. It is simply less expensive now to source uranium ovrseas.

Ocelot: New victims, different places.

Code Talker: But uranium is a tactical resource. To rely on a foreign country for it is... a difficult decision to make. And he was in the perfect place to infulence that decision.

Ocelot: He could have condemned your people to the mines forever...

Code Talker: The contamination comes not only from uranium. The fallout from the Nevada nuclear tests also settled on our lands.As if our fortune were not already bad enough, we were also downwinders. To save the Diné, I must complete my original research.

Code Talker and His Research [1]

Parasites Living Within Us

Ocelot: Code Talker, I haven't seen you eat a single thing since you got here. Let me guess - photosynthesis ?

Code Talker: Oh? What makes you say that?

Ocelot: A long time ago, I knew someone a similar ability.

Code Talker: Well, you've been correct. Most of my body is covered with parasites. I supply them with water, and in return I receive sugars they produce when exposed to light.

Ocelot: [agreeing sound]

Code Talker: It isn't just my skin, either. The parasites also act as my eyes. They have replaced many of my internal organs, as well. It is thanks to them that I live on after over a century.

Ocelot: How did you obtain them anyway? Through your research?

Code Talker: I... would like to say as much, but there is more to it than that. Let me take you back twenty years. I had hit a dead-end with my parasite research. Then, I was approached by a foundation. They said they had a sample of an unusual strain of parasite.

Ocelot: Which foundation?

Code Talker: Appearantly, they had links to ARPA, but that is all I learned. I was somewhat ignorant of the ways of the world. Just being able to study it was enough for me.

Ocelot: I've heard THAT before. Go on.

Code Talker: Half in doubt, I visited them to discover the body of an old man. Well, to be precise, his partial remains. A collection of parts, you could say. The man had died in an explosion.

Ocelot: An old man you say...

Code Talker: His flesh had not decomposed. In fact, the tissues' cells were still metabolizing. The parasite had infected - or should I say assimilated with the tissues, and was keeping them alive. I became obsessed with studying the body parts, forgoing food and even sleep. Every day was filled with new discoveries. The parasite's biology, internal anatomy, life cycle...but there was only so much I could learn through observation. And so I made a decision. To truly know the parasites, I had to live with them.

Ocelot: So you mplented them inside you, from the dead man's flesh?

Code Talker: Correct.

Miller: [cough]

Code Talker: It was quite a gamble, whether or not they would adapt to me...but fortunenatle,y it appears I was compatible with them. Or perhaps, through many years of research, my immune system learned to tolerate them.

Ocelot: Were they that body's only parasite?

Code Talker: Yes. However, there was a seperate specimen that supplied its host with adrenaline in response to pain. And yet another, that could control other insects at will through secreting heterogenous phermones. I wanted exposure to them - to take them into me. But my wishes were denied. Their records though, provided clues that helped advance my research. Would you care to join me? A life spent never worrying about food is a most wonderful one.

Ocelot: I think I'll pass. But thanks. This has been helpful.

Code Talker and His Research [2]

What Covers the Skulls

Code Talker: The one that covers. The parasite that lives on the surface of the Skulls' bodies is what gives them their power. Similar to my children who live in my skin. I modified the parasites I isolated from the body of that old man, differentiating them with various abilities: one that can blend perfectly into its surroundings, by exposing the pigments in its cells at will; another, that by harboring multiple species of metallic archaea, can oxidize and reduce metal, isolating the one that covers and transplanting it into an artificial medium, should provide the same abilities as the Skulls. But they can only subsist within a human body. Once transplanted into the medium, they will eventually die. Another thing: the weakness of the one that covers is desiccation. Their surface moisture loss is greater than ours. The reason they give off mist is to alleviate this, by releasing the salts inside them as microparticles. Water vapor condenses around them, appearing as mist, but this dries out the atmosphere until they cannot even produce mist. And once their supply of water from the host runs out, the parasites are in danger. They, along with their host, enter a form of suspended animation. However, a similar effect occurs if they come into contact with a large amount of water. Rain, for instance. The one that covers will temporarily abandon other processes in its eagerness to absorb the water. Bid-olonhe. Make the weather your ally.

Code Talker and His Research [3]

Origins of "Code Talker"

Ocelot: There's something I've been wondering. Why are you called "Code Talker"? During World War II, the U.S. military used the languages of various different tribes, including the Navajo, as codes, right? I know the term "code talker" was used to mean people sent out to the battlefield to speak in those codes. Were you one of them?

Code Talker: Our mother tongue was indeed used for war. But I did not go. I was already over the conscription age. However, I was made to help craft the codes that were spoken. So in a wider sense you can call me a code talker for that. Navajo is a complex language, and virtually no one outside the U.S. speaks it. They must have thought it was the perfect language to use as a code.

Ocelot: Yeah. In the end, the Japanese never cracked it. The cipher is king in information warfare.

Code Talker: Of course, they didn't simply speak in Navajo. They created substitutions for words according to a code book, and then translated those into our language. Young Diné were sent to the front lines of the Pacific Theater as code talkers. To fight is an honor for the Diné. They were the pride of our people. But I cannot say this history brings me joy. Words are alive. When they are spoken, life is breathed into them. They become a part of the listener. Our words were transformed into lifeless ciphers, and used for war. This, after the bilagáana spent generations trying to suppress the language.

Ocelot: Yeah... I'm sorry. So I guess we shouldn't be calling you "Code Talker," huh...

Code Talker: No, I do not mind. The reason why Skull Face called me "Code Talker" was because I am also responsible for coding language into the vocal cord parasites. I am the same as those young warriors. Used for a cipher's sake. I must never forget that. The name "Code Talker" is a lesson carved into my being.

Motives for Researching Vocal Cord Parasites

Ocelot: You said that Skull Face ordered you to weaponize the vocal cord parasites... But you also said "he wasn't the reason."

Code Talker: And he wasn't. I was seduced by the parasites. That is a fact.

Ocelot: How? You mean from your curiosity as a scientist?

Code Talker: That I cannot deny... but there's more to it. The story goes back to the 19th century, to my earliest memory. One day, a man from the government visited our hooghan - our home. I cried as he yanked me from my mother's arms and took me away to an "Indian boarding school." From that day forward, I became "George." This was the name my teacher gave me. I was forced to give up my Diné name. Forbidden from speaking anything but English, if we dared utter a word in "filthy" Navajo, the teacher made us eat a bar of soap.

Ocelot: Yeah, that was the U.S. government's "education" policy for Native Americans.

Code Talker: To erase our words was like erasing our people. Their "education" was tantamount to ethnic cleansing. Over time, the overt persecution of our language stopped. But to this day, it continues to be eaten away by the lingua franca that is English. Many of the Diné outside of the reservations can speak nothing else. It isn't just our language. Across the world, minority languages are being destroyed by dominant languages. Many are on the verge of extinction.

Ocelot: Enter the vocal cord parasites?

Code Talker: Yes. I began thinking minority languages needed some sort of deterrent against dominant languages. In order that they, that their peoples and cultures survive. It was then that I came across literature at the foundation claiming that man acquired language thanks to a type of parasite. One that distinguishes between languages as a precursor to reproduction. If I could just resurrect it, make it more pathogenic... I would have my deterrent against English. But I failed to hide that aim from Skull Face. He noticed. Yes. I wanted to retaliate against the English language! Though never did I intend to actually use it as he planned. You know how the story ends. I was forced to study how to make the parasites compatible with all the world'slanguages [sic] - all but English.

Ocelot: However, he in fact secretly isolated an English strain.

Code Talker: I will not be held prisoner by that man's phantom. The English strain must not be allowed to exist either.

Code Talker and His Research [4]

The Ethnic Cleansing Parasite Project

Code Talker: I have no doubt Skull Face's plan is almost complete. At that point, I will no longer be of use to him. I must leave behind this record at least. A record of how the ancient vocal cord parasites became these abominable "ethnic cleansing parasites".I believe he has two purposes for the ethnic cleansing parasites. The first, as their name suggests, is ethnic cleansing. This conflict between East and West that envelops the world will not last much longer. Once the Cold War ends, and the weight of America and the Soviet Union is lifted away, the ethnic conflicts they kept suppressed will all rise to the surface. It is not difficult to imagine that the radical sides will begin "cleansing" their adversaries. But what if an ethnic cleansing parasite matching the language of the aggressors were to be unleashed? The aggressors would be washed off the Earth. At the very least, the idea that retaliation could eradicate your people would prove a powerful deterrent. The second purpose is the "Englishization" of the world. To Cipher the organization, this is probably their main use. Man thinks in words, or rather, words are man's very means of thinking. If you erase a word representing some concept, the concept itself disappears from the world. "Nizhóni" means "beautiful" in Navajo. But the image that comes tooto mind when we say "Nizhóni" differs from the bila'gáana's "beautiful". An azure sky. A rolling landscape. Lush greenery. The meaning we place in nizhóni has its roots in Diné culture. If we lose the word nizhóni, the images of our beautiful homeland would be washed away into oblivion along with it. Just as Orwell indicated years ago. Cipher, being based in America, is pushing Englishization for this very reason. Suppose all 5 billion people on this planet come to read, speak and think in English. Their willls could also be streamlined under English. Cipher's control would be all the easier. Economic governance would progress in leaps and bounds. The ethnic cleansing parasites would be a great aid in accomplishing this goal. There is no need to destroy any langage besides English. All they need to do is weaken other dominant languages competing with it. Russian, Chinese, Arabic... if people know they risk their lives speaking such languages, they will flock to the lingua franca that is English. Cipher need not even focus attention on smaller languages. After all, they are already being eaten away by English. Business, education, film, commodities... English has permeated every area of global society. I can see this when I look at young Diné. Some of them have already lost their grasp of the Navajo language. It is said that over 2,000 languages of the world are facing extinction. This very moment, cultural concepts and forms of expression are disappearing forever. The spread of electronic networks gives greater meaning to Englishization. Networks have no national borders. By basing them on a single language, they can penetrate deeper into and between people. That basic point of unity provides the ideal environment for someone who aims to control peoples' wills. But how does this differ from buildng the Tower of Babel?

The Parasites Gave Us Language

Code Talker: The ethnic cleansing parasites attempt to rob man of his words. Such irony, it was the vocal cord parasites that gave words to him in the first place. Ancient man had no language. Unable to produce complex sounds due to the structure of their throat, he could communicate only through simple vocalizations and gestures. then, the vocal cord parasite infected his larynx. Man's transition to walking upright did not gift him solely with ntelligence, but also with his voice. At the time, the vocal cord parasites never harmed man. They merely took a small measure nourishment. In fact, you could call it a symbiotic relationship. Some animal species use particular vocalization patterns to attract a female and reproduce. Songbirds. Certain insects. And also the vocal cord parasites. The difference is that the parasites themselves did not produce sounds. Rather, they had their hosts - man - do it for them. Once secure on the human host's vocal cords, a male vocal cord parasite caused the host to produce a certain sound pattern. Something like the warble of a bird. Meanwhile, females parasitizing other hosts' pharynxes needed only wait. Upon hearing the sound pattern of an attractive mate, they would manipulate their host into making contact with the person it came from. The female traveled through its host's saliva to the other host's vocal cords where the male was waiting, and the pair copulated.We can only imagine how the female manupulated its host, but it was probably through smell. Smells travel directly from the limbic system via the olfactory cilia in the nasal cavity. Volatile compounds released by the female would stimulate the limbic system, which controls instincts, making the host feel... amorous. This kind of sexual selection naturally led to competition between between the male parasites.Males that had their hosts produce sounds received by females as more attractive, succeeded in copulating and producing offspring.Evolutionary traits caused by sexual selection are curious. The peacock's feathers. The manakin's dance. The firefly's luminescence pattern. Even with courtship behaviours that are not advantageous to survival, those indivduals that excel in them produce offspring and it escalades with each generation. The same was true of the vocal cord parasites. Courtship vocalization rhythms and intonations beame more sophisticated, and in order for man to produce such soundsm, they had to alter his vocal organs. By lowering the position of the larynx, and developing resonating chambers, they enabled more complex pronunciations. But that was not all. The vocal cord parasites activated a transcription factor that would later control man's language ability. A protein that, due to its appearance, is called forkhead box protein P2, or FOX P2. Activating this transcription factor led to the development of brain functions capable of creating sophisticated frequency changes. This was the pinnacle of the vocal cord parasites prosperity. However, this sophisticated pronunciation control was too useful for man to ignore. Once human sexual activity ceasedv to be only seasonal, and having lost pigment-based sexual characteristics, distinctive vocalizations became the most effective means for humans to attract mates as well. Combined with logic pathways hard-wired into the brain, or "universal grammar", it was not long before advanced commmunication was possible. This was the birth of "language", Luckily for man, it was around this time that a particular retrovirus was circulating. While not lethal, it infected not only man, but the vocal cord parasites as well. It is presumed that this virus removed part of the parasites' DNA and reverse transcribed it into man's reproductive cells. It was a vector. Among the genes it transcribed were the ones responsible for the production of language. The vocal cord parasites' vocalization genes were written into the human genome.The parasites were no longer of any use for man now.. Man could use his voice as he plased when he pleased, hinderng the parasites' courtship vocalizations. Having lost their opportunity to reproduce, the parasites died out, leaving behind only the transcribed genes. The vocal cord parasites were once in a symbiosis with man, its genes even became a part of his. Humans and parasites are extremely close. As such, it will be extremely difficult for man's immune system to eliminate the vocal cord parasites. Even cutting them out will be no simple matter. Which is exactly why these ethnic cleansing parasites are such a formidable weapon.

Genesis of the Vocal Cord Parasites

Code Talker: The rise of the vocal cord parasites goes back approximately 300 million years, to the Permian period. At that time, they were not even parasites, but predatory autotrophs. They are believed to have been the common ancestor to Pentastomida and the Cyclops genus of copepods. However, Earth's environment underwent a violent change at the end of the Permian period. The cause is unclear, but the evidence suggests that over 90% of the Earth's organisms at that time died out. The most pronounced threat to proto-parasites was the severe reduction in oxygen concentration. The result was cladogenesis - a splitting that gave birth to a new strain that could parasitize other organisms' respisatory apparatus. This survival technique helped lower their oxygen consumption, and inhabiting the throat kept them securely in contact with inhaled air. The best survivors were those that parasitized the raptiles that flourished at the time. Entering the Triassic perod, the reptiles evolved into dinosaurs and the proto-parasites shared in their success. Dinosaurs developed respiratory organs called air sacs to adapt to the low-oxygen environment. These in particular, helped the proto-parasites thrive. But another trial awaited them. The end of the Triassic period saw another drastic change in the Earth's environment. For most parasites, the male and female take the same host. Many are, in fact, hermaphrodites. Originally, the vocal cord parasites were as well. But for any strain to ride out a severe environmental change, it must secure a steady pool of genetic diversity. Another split. Now the newest strain procreated with mates found in other hosts. And in order to increase its encounters with those mates, the new strain utilized the voice of its host. They came to inhabit the host's vocal cords. This truly was the birth of the "vocal cord parasite". The parasites developed the host's pharynx to form resonating chambers, and used them to make sophisticated mating sounds. The relatively upright posture of the dinosaurs was important in this...because the crooked L-shaped pharynx was more suited to the development of resonating chambers. These developments ushered in a time of great prosperity for the parasites. But for the htird time, the parasites had a major hurdle to overcome. The meteorite impact at the end of the Cretaceous period, which spelled the end of the dinosaurs. With their hosts extinct, the vocl cord parasites had no option but to find a new habitat - birds. As genetic successors to the dinosaurs with functioning air sac apparatus already in place, birds were the perfect choice. But the parasites could not survive in birds that flew in high altitudes with thinner air. So they parasitized ground-dwelling birds, and altered their respiratory system for the sake of reproduction. They gave the birds the means to create sophisticated sounds - the syrinx responsible for chirping, This is the proof that points to activation of FOXP2 in songbirds as well as humans. The Cenozoic Era began with a rise in oxygen-concentration, which helped mammals to evolve and increase in size. The parasites than shifted to humans as a more effective host. Humans bipedal upright walking meant that our throats could support larger resonating chambers. At first, vocal cord parasites entered humans using birds as their intermediate host, but eventually they changed to conducting their entire life cycle within human hosts. What happens next is as I have already described. People took the vocalizing prowess given them by the parasites and made it language and once the parasites could no longer use it as their mating call, they died out. Or in other words, the parasites overcame all evolutionary hurdles except humanity. Skull Face shared his opinon on that matter. He said the ethnic cleansers project was sure to succeed. After all, the parasites ahd a grudge against us humans. To think we awoke them after such a long slumber, just so they could sate their thirst for vengeance...It is terrible...unforgivable. And yet it is what I have done.

Revival of the Vocal Cord Parasites

Code Talker: I learned of the vocal cord parasites' existance in literature belonging to the foundation. It was little more than a theory. The question was, why does only homo sapiens among all primates have highly- developed language? Human...vs everything else. The missing link between these was the miystery which gave rise to this theory. I was fascinated by the idea of their existance. In the Diné creation myth, the Nilch'i dine'é who first inhabited the world were insectlike creatures. I came to imagine that those insectlike creatures could be humans living in symbiosis with the vocal cord parasites. But I had not the faintest idea of how I could resurrect them. That is when Skull Face came to me. What he offered me was not just assistance with my metallic archaea research. He told me vocal cord parasites really existed. And not only did they exist, they had already been brought back to life in the modern age! An ancient human cadaver, host to the parasites of the time. Cipher excavated such a cadaver from the permafrost region, and isolated the DNA coding of the vocal cord parasites. Naturally, they were long dead and could not be brought back. But there was an alternate vessel which they could use. A relative species of Pentastomida discovered in China. It had adapted to live in the nasal cavity of animal hosts, but its genetic sequence showed signs of [a] common ancestry with the vocal cord parasites. Ontogenesis - the path of an organism to maturity - is like a road map of the phylogenetic evolution of the entire strain. Cipher used this to effect a reverse evolution of the modern parasite and resurrect the vocal cord parasites. They interposed a developmental-mechanism to the ontogenetic stage analogous to to when the relative species first appeared - the point at which it split from the vocal cord parasites - forcing its evolution down the other path. The vocal cord parasite path. The larvae this produced was the vocal cord parasites - reborn. I do not know in detail how Cipher accomplished this, but clearly they have access to high-level genetic technologies. Skull Face said it was the work of a genius woman scientist. And that the relative species in question was first discovered by a group once called "The Philosophers". I was tasked with modifying the resurrected parasites. HE charged me with two demands. First: to add lethality to these organisms that had once lived in peace with man...By unleashing the larvae's latent desire to consume nutrients fom the host's lung tissue, making them eat and eat until the lungs were destroyed.Second: to have both male and female inhabit the same host, and copulate then and there only when exposed to specific pronuncation continuously over an extended time. What he would do to the Diné if I failed...I had no choice.

The Final Form of the Ethnic Cleansing Parasites

Code Talker: Originally, the the ultimate objective of the cleansing parasite project was the identification of not only languages. but of actual cultures. Language is deely connected to ethnicity. But many languages are employed by multiple ethnic groups. And confrontation between those ethnic groups is by no means rare. If the cleanser parasites were to be a deterrent against ethnic conflict, they had to distinguish between groups using means other than pure language. The original planc alled for this to be achieved by differences in the transmission vector. Each ethnic group has different lifestyle customs and eating habits. For instance, parasites living in shalllow water and taken in through the skin could be used tot arget rice-farming groups. Or parasites using cows as their intermediate host would be ineffective against cultures that obstain from eating beef. But that is a lofty goal indeed. The current parasites mainly rely on droplet transmission. It would take extensive time to alter the transmission route. I eventually learned that the ethnic cleansers project had been shut down. It was Skull Face who put it back into operation. But despite that, he told me to forget about the transmission route, and just focus on language identification. I do not know why. I understand that the Chinese Philosophers who discovered the relative species of parasite originally planned to develop a phonogramic alexia parasite. The left temporoparietal region is home to the part of the brain that identifies the phonetic symbols of the English language. They wished to create a strain that would parasitize that region and suppress its literacy function. The brain area responsible for identifying the logographs of Chinese, meanwhile is in the left middle frontal gyrus. Meaning that even if native speakers of Chinese were infected with the parasite, their literacy would be unaffected. Old and new. East and West, there is no limit tot he delusions of those in power. But this delusion threatens to become a reality. I have to dos omething to stop this. There must be something I can do.

Code Talker and His Research [5]

Superorganisms

Code Talker: Hm...It appears I was looking at things wrong.

Ocelot: What do you mean?

Code Talker: All of you. Until now I have thought of your organization, Diamond Dogs, as a superorganism.

Ocelot: Uhh...You'll have to explain that one.

Code Talker: The term refers to a unit of eusocial insects like ants or bees. While made up of many individuals, they behave a sthough they are one organism with the queen as their nerve center. The close ties you share here remind me of that.

Ocelot: Well, the Boss's efforts do pull us all together.

Code Talker: I was not finished. I am speaking in terms of homogeneity. You come from all walks of life, do you not? Many races and tongues, talents and pasts. Complementing each other, influencing each other, making Diamond Dogs the unique group that it is.

Ocelot: Of course. We have no use for mindless drones around here.

Code Talker: Is that so. Then perhaps an organization like yours is a truer superorganism than the ants and bees.

Ocelot: Meaning?

Code Talker: Most organisms adapt to their environment by coexisting with other species. Take the cow for instance. Its rumen - the first stomach contains an incredible number of bacteria, which digest the food it has consumed. Without their help, the cow could not breeak down the fiber in grasses. The cow has to "outsource" its means of survival to them.

Ocelot: You don't say.

Code Talker: Man is the same. Some 100 trillion bacteria live inside the human intestines Without the bacteria, they could not function properly. And it does not stop there. The stomach, the mouth, the skin... even the placenta contains bacteria that coexist with us. The same is true of parasites. In fact, the human immune system has evolved based on parasites being a part of it. Without them, the immune system can run amok and even damage other parts of the body.

Ocelot: This is all very interesting, but what does it have to do with Diamond Dogs?

Code Talker: A harmonious superorganism is made up notof a group of homogenous individuals, but of dierse individuals that complement each other. That is what I saw in your group here. Then it occured to me that man is a superorganism. Man's phenotype is not determined solely by HIS genetics. Some say if you mapped the genomes of all [the] bacteria in the human body, the result would be over 100 times bigger than the human genome. The sum of man's genome and those of the organisms he coexists with - call it a metagenome - creates the superorganism we know as a human being.

Ocelot: That's quite a leap.

Code Talker: You think so? Then try a broader perspective. If our world were a human body, you would be parasites. You make a living by doing the dirty work [the] world powers cannot handle themselves. From their perspective, you are likely a nuisance. But without you, pus would build up around the world, and autotoxemia - self-poisoning - would follow. The world needs your kind.

Ocelot: Thank goodness for that.

Code Talker: Skull Face forced me to turn parasites into weapons. Creatures with which we are supposed to coexist. Meanwhile, that "foundation" I worked with focused solely on the human genome, appearantly thinking that manipulating it would get them whatever new form they want. Both ways are mistakes. Neither is a true superorganism. I am Diné. By speaking with those living inside me, we enhance one another, and enjoy harmonious growth. Such was the original purpose of my research. You have made me remember this. E'hee hee.

Ocelot: Well, it's an honor. You can travel the world, but you can't find another place like this. If the whole world was like this base, I think the people's of the world would bid farewell to fightng for good. Maybe that's what The Boss wanted in the end.

Skull Face's Objective [1]

Skull Face's Demise

Code Talker: Skull Face has finally burned out. The world is rid of his existence, at last.
Venom Snake: Was he still alive?
Code Talker: You could say that… But you could also say he’d been dead for decades.
Snake: What’s that supposed to mean?
Code Talker: Biologically speaking, it’s hard to say how much was his “life.”
Snake: Side effects from the treatment?
Code Talker: No, the primary effect. Keeping a dying host alive as long as possible, that is the whole point. But in the end, he grew too dependent on his “children.” As if he had any other way to keep on living. He first underwent parasite therapy before the Soviet Union became his home. His body was horribly burned. Fire washed across his thin, young frame and stole his skin and his throat, even his lungs. Only through repeated therapies could the parasites keep him alive. Most of his “life” became something the parasites gave to him.
Snake: And then he lost the ability to die.
Code Talker: That is correct. The parasites live on past the host’s death, still aiding cell composition. At that stage, there’s no way to extract them from the host’s cell. There’s no way of knowing when the last cell of Skull Face’s body would die. The only choice was to burn the whole thing, and his “children” along with it. Hah, and I am one to talk. When my life is snuffed out, I expect you to treat my body the same way. And when I burn, I will truly be one with my “children” for the first time.

Whereabouts of the Third English Mating Pair

Code Talker: You say there were three English vocal parasites.

Venom Snake: According to Skull Face, yeah.

Code Talker: Skull Face had two of the English strain with him. You burned both of them.

Venom Snake: There was an oil fire - I tossed 'em in.

Code Talker: So that just leaves one - and you tell me SKull Face said he used it.

Venom Snake: He said it was "very close to me".

Code Talker: Very close... One of your comrades, or someone ordered to kill you...Or he could have been speaking metaphorically.

Venom Snake: Metaphorically?

Code Talker: Close to your spirit. Close to your heart. Someone who either loves you, or despises you.

Venom Snake: The second one makes a long list.

Code Talker: Whichever it is, act with caution. Skull Face implanted someone with English-language strain. Who it is, is irrelevant.

Venom Snake: Why?

Code Talker: I'll tell you what Skull Face really meant. "Very close to you" means "You will be exposed".

Vennom Snake: (hm)

Code Talker: All the infected here have been given the Wolbachia. Even if the vocal cord parasites infect them now, they cannot reproduce. But if there's a different host among us, host to the English strain..

Venom Snake: If that were the case, we'd see the symptoms.

Code Talker: What about the non-English seakers?

Venom Snake: We have plenty of those, but the staff use English as a common language.

Code Talker: But if that someone has not spoken English yet, and begins to speak it now...

Venom Snake: There'd be another outbreak...

Code Talker: The final mating pair of the English strain must bDo you see what the final mating paie found immediately. Skull Face is gone, but his threat still remains - on this base. Do you see what the final mating pair is? With him dead, those parasites are the strain he wished to leave upon the world - his thirst for vengeance, in the flesh. Think. Does anyone here bear a grudge against you? Who would target you specifically?

Skull Face's Ethnic Liberation Parasites

Ocelot: The ethnic cleansers that Code Talker mentioned...they weren't Skull Face's true goal. All we have is circumstancial evidence, but here's my theory. It was Cipher who started developing the vocal cord parasites as bio-weapons... parasitic weapons. And Africa was the testing ground for them. As Code Talker said, their purpose is the ethbnic cleansing of only those who speak a particular language. So they could be a weapon of mass destruction to eradicate specific groups, races, ethnicities, or colonies by the language they speak. Or a kind of absolte "language control"...OWorse, it could have destroyed everything they have built. maybe a tool for those arrogant fools to buidl some misguided utopia. I cans ee plenty of uses for them. However, in practiacal terms they wouldn't be as dangerous as you'd think. Counteracting the parasites is easy, after all. Cut 'em out of your throat to sae your life, or just don't talk. That also prevents the infection from spreading. So if the international community were to find out about them, they'd no longer be the threat they were conceived to be. In which case their target would be limited to minority groups - as a deterrent or a terrorist tool. It's hard to imagine Cipher developing something like that as a main-weapon for their arsenal. That leads me to think we've only tugged on on one little thread in Cipher's grand tapestry...An obscure corner of their work, possibly forgotten altogether. In any case, things changed. When Skull Face was forced to relocate to Africa, and he saw that thread dangling. All the time he continued that research, he was secretly following his own agenda. The "ethnic liberator" parasites, his English-language strain.

Conjecture About English Strain Production

Ocelot: Skull Face said there were only three samplesof the English-language strain parasite and I think we can believe him. Bringing his "ethnic liberators" plan to fruition depended on creating an English version of the vocal cord parasites at all costs. But an English strain would have een useless to Cipher. Worse, it could have destroyed everything they'd built. It was the one type they couldn't allow. That means Skull Face was forced to develop his English out of sight of Cipher's network. Naturally, he couldn't use the greenhouse facilites Cipher had used and set up and filled with guinea pigs. Skull Face must have found some secret plce to develop his precious few English parasites, hiding all evidence like a man cheating on his wife. Somewhere, an entirely standalone environment. And when his plan entered its final phase, he must hve made the place disappear. Some little room, could be anywhere, but now nowhere at all. We'll never know where he did it, but to elude Cipher's surveillance, it couldn't have been big. I believe Skull Face was telling the truth. There were only ever three samples of the English language strain.

World Reactions to Sahelanthropus

Ocelot: Why activate Sahelanthropus in Afghanistan? This is how Skull Face wanted things to play out. The Soviet Union secretly develops a nuclear weapon and successfully deploys it in Afghanistan. Revealing the existence of Sahelanthropus results in a return to the glory days of the Cold War. The threat it poses, reignites the nuclear arms race between the world's major powers. The demand for nuclear weapons increases around the globe. What if you then introduced a new nuclear weapon anyone could get their hands on? Non-nuclear nations, militant groups of all shapes and sizes, they'd all jump at the chance. Sahelanthropus was a marketing tool to sell nukes all around the worldBut I think it's save to say that plan was "stamped out" before it got up and running. The world's intelligence agencies never did turn up anything conclusive on it. After all, Sahelanthropus vanished before word could spread. Everything that's happened is already a fading memory, never to join the pages of history. Except for Cipher. Cipher won't forget. They'll already be working on something. Quietly, beneath the surface. They'll use the pieces of data scraped together from this incident to build their own bipedal weapon. It'll take them a long time to complete it, but for now, the greed sector have found their new life's work. We'll have to be ready, too.

Skull Face's Objective [2]

Skull Face 9 Years Ago

Ocelot: HEC's dug up some interesting facts about our skull-faced friend. Nine years ago he was exiled to South Africa, stripped of political power. The upshot's that he ceased being aserious threat - in Cipher's eyes, anyway. They eased up on suveillance, giving him an opening to establish his own military unit - one that answered to his will alone. Those men likely had no idea their orders were coming from Skull Face. They probably didn't even know the organization was a part Cipher at all. Anyway, it was in South Africa where he found renewed interest in parasites. And when he dscovered the vocal cord parasites...He began to make his plan. Wipe the English language out of existence. Free the world, not by taking men's lives, but by taking their tongues. In his eyes, the greatets symbiotic parasite the world has ever known isn't microbial. It's linguistic. Words are what keeps civilization - our world - alive.

Multiethnicity in the United States

Code Talker: There was something Skull Face said...America is made up of many peoples, but those peoples never mix. Quite so. One nation, home to hundreds of different ethnic groups. Many of whom stick to their respective living areas - little colonies, not interacting with over groups. Going out of their way to vaoid one another. Their land, organizations, relationships...Thus, the United States of America is no melting pot. It is more of a salad bowl. It is not made up from one people. But for its minorities to functon in society, a common ground is needed: Language. Even if the country is not one - no, because it is not one - a lingua franca is neccessary, English. Americn hegemonism was born from the "illusion" that English could unite diverse ethnicities. In taking in peole from around the globe, America became a microcosm of it. Now the boundaries between it and the rest of the world have become blurred. However different our neighbors may be, English enables us to create a symbiotic relationship with each other. If Englsh can bring unacquainted neighbors togethe rin America, this should hold true for the world. The salad bowl that is the world can also become one.

Skull Face's Objective [3]

Rules and Language

Code Talker: A ruler's greatest wealth is not money or land; it is the number of individuals under his control. Subjects who work, consume, are there to be used as pawns in war. For a capitalist ruler, his people's power becomes his power. You are the same with your Diamond Dogs. You spin it with your speeches, but what you are doing is bringing as much talent as you can into your little domain. Every person another feather in your cap. Yes... since ancient times, every civilization's ruler has had the same idea. When people unite under one will, they become stronger than the sum of their parts, and the one will is the ruler's will. And what do rulers use to bring people together? Language. In the Old Testament, it is written that only one language was spoken in Eden. A shared tongue that united all of humanity. Mankind eventually grew aware of its power, and harnessed their strength to build a tower to the heavens: the mighty Tower of Babel. This angered God, who splintered the language of man, and the tower was never completed. Languages emerged, and the earth was divided as men went their separate ways. Every age is the same. A ruler's first order of business after conquering new land is to force his tongue on its people. Ancient Rome, Napoleon, and now Zero--English is wreaking havoc around the world right now. The British Empire till[ed] the land with war as its hoe, then began planting the seed that is English. Eventually, American capitalism became the new instrument. To play its game of wealth, you only have to abide by one rule: English. By exploiting people's desires, English has become a leash that people gladly wear around their necks, it would seem.

Skull Face's Objective [4]

Secret Recording of Skull Face and Code Talker 1

Skull Face: Ya'at, ee. You disappoint me. Have you forgotten my face?

Code Talker: Leave me be.

Skull Face: Hmmph. You won't respond to anyone else, so I figured it must be me you wanted to see, but now you won't even look at me.

Code Talker: Have I not suffered enough?

Skull Face: Not until you've eased my suffering first! To tell you the truth, old man, I'm in a bit of a bind. It's about your "children."

Code Talker: Hm?

Skull Face: You know what I mean? The parasites. The ones that infect a man's throat, killing him if he speaks their language.

Code Talker: They must not be allowed to multiply!

Skull Face: Hurm. You are allowed to live only in order to help me, but you don't want to, do you? So why not choose death instead? Because you want to protect the Diné and their land from me.

Code Talker: (sighs)

Skull Face: That's your purpose, isn't it? Don't lose sight of that, now...

Code Talker: (groans)

Skull Face: It's in your interest to cooperate, because if you don't--

Code Talker: Madness.

Skull Face: --the parasites can't detect your people's tongue... so I'll just have to resort to more heavy-handed means. (steps aside) I have the greatest respect for your people. I would rather avoid such a thing, but... we don't always get our way. I was born a tiny moat in a mighty tempest, and until those winds abate, all I can choose is how to act when they blow me this way or that. Tell me, "Code Talker," what happens to a man infected with a pair of your parasites? Can they be removed? Can the full-blown symptoms be prevented?

Code Talker: It is impossible to remove the parasites alone. They have too close an affinity with humans.

Skull Face: Then how do you stop the symptoms from developing?

Code Talker: (silence)

Skull Face: All right. I was hoping for an answer now, but perhaps you just need a little more time. I'll be back soon. I've set up shop not far from here. We'll be seeing a lot more of each other.

Code Talker: If you are close by, then, it is almost complete.

Skull Face: We're in the final phases. All that's left is to see if I can actually disable a nuke with the help of your metallic archaea. Once that's done, I won't have to return here again, and your suffering will end... as will your people's. We're almost finished, Code Talker, each in our own way.

Code Talker: My only regret will be not finishing you.

Skull Face: There's nothing stopping you. I'm only alive because you want me that way...

Code Talker: Ridiculous.

Skull Face: As you wish. My regret is this misunderstanding between us. You and I, our goal is the same. We should be working together! A symbiosis!

Code Talker: You do not know my mind. I simply want the Diné bloodline to endure.

Skull Face: Ha ha ha! Really now, you're just another moat in the storm. How you react to all the slings and arrows, that's what counts. That's why you call those squirming monsters your "children."

Code Talker: What I have done is forbidden. Forgive me, all of you.

Skull Face: The world should be left the way it is. You of all men should know that.

Secret Recording of Skull Face and Code Talker 2

Skull Face: Forgive me, but my schedule has changed. The time for grace and good manners has run out.

Code Talker: Please. Torture will not work on me. Surely you know this.

Skull Face: Oh, I have no intention of getting rough with you. You haven't been beaten, your hands aren't even tied. Just like me, you live in symbiosis with countless parasites. What wounds I might inflict, they'll patch right up. You might feel considerable pain, but I've no doubt you can withstand it.

Code Talker: Then what do you plan on doing?

Skull Face: I have a soldier standing outside. Nothing special about him, except that he always obeys... I have given him one instruction: whenever I ring this bell, he passes on a message for me. That message is simply, "Go."

Code Talker: What is this?!

Skull Face: After that, though, it gets complicated. The message will arrive at a room, a little bigger than this one, nothing special. Some of your people are in this room, surrounded by my men--

Code Talker: Enough of this!

Skull Face: --they pick them at random, no regard for age, gender... in that, I suppose, they're different from you, not as... discriminating. They tied them up one by one, blindfolded them--we had to maintain order, you understand--

Code Talker: You bastard--

Skull Face: "Go." When they hear that, my men will pick one of your people and infect them with the parasite. Your parasite.

Code Talker: It won't work on my people.

Skull Face: True, the vocal cord parasite doesn't respond to your language, but what about English?

Code Talker: An English strain... it exists?!

Skull Face: A ring of this bell and they infect one person. If that person abandons the Navajo language, the English strain will trigger symptoms.

Code Talker: You monster--

Skull Face: So, it's quite simple. Every time I ring the bell, another of your people is infected.

Code Talker: Don't do this!

Skull Face: I don't want to do this, I'd rather not have to ring the bell, which is why I'm hoping you will talk to me.

Code Talker: (long pause) ...what do you want? What else could you possibly want?

Skull Face: You know the answer to that: How to prevent the symptoms caused by the parasite.

Code Talker: You cannot control it like some slave! Forget the idea!

Skull Face: Forget it? Unlikely.

Code Talker: I will never tell you--

Skull Face: (rings bell)

Code Talker: What have you done?!!

Skull Face: (impatiently) You made me do that.

Code Talker: You black-hearted-- huhh!!

Skull Face: (accosts Code Talker) Settle down. (drops Code Talker to floor)

Code Talker: Don't use it again.

Skull Face: Well, that is up to you. All you need to do is tell me what I want: how to prevent the vocal cord parasite symptoms.

Code Talker: Why? Why do you need to know?!

Skull Face: The adult soldiers at Bwala ya Masa are all dead.

Code Talker: What?!

Skull Face: The parasite traveled downstream.

Code Talker: How...?

Skull Face: It would appear that he was involved. Another demon who woke up from nine years of slumber. As a result, the vocal cord parasite spread through the village.

Code Talker: I told you this would happen!

Skull Face: It was... an unfortunate accident. He is becoming an annoyance. He may stumble on the truth sooner or later, but I suppose that is really of no consequence. One day, he too will pay for what he has done.

Code Talker: Bleg'ana. The real demon is you.

Skull Face: You know, this incident made me realize something. You are right. I should have acted with more humility. These creatures cannot be controlled, all the more reason I require a means to stop them.

Code Talker: There is no such way.

Skull Face: Oh, really? (readies bell)

Code Talker: Wait! Don't ring it again.

Skull Face: It is up to you.

Code Talker: (sighs)

Skull Face: Out with it!

Code Talker: I see now... there must be more to it than that.

Skull Face: What?

Code Talker: They are in you. You used this land to breed more of my children, and not just here... no. In pursuit of your "ethnic cleansers," you sifted through many language strains, finding hosts, breeding more and more... you would have been infected in the process, infected with countless strains.

Skull Face: (grunts)

Code Talker: Most likely your mother tongue's as well. Romania, Northern Transylvania. You found that one, too. Yes... the Hungarian strain that responds to the CK's dialect---

Skull Face: Silence!

Code Talker: Bleg'ana. It is you who shall pay.

(A struggle ensues, Code Talker presumably uses his parasites to grab Skull Face and immobilize him.)

Skull Face: Is this your retaliation, old man?

Code Talker: Let my people go, and never bother them again!

(Skull Face is thrown against the wall, and Code Talker composes himself.)

Code Talker: You heard me. What now?

Skull Face: (laughs and rings the bell twice.)

Code Talker: NO! What are you doing?!

Skull Face: I am not afraid! I probably have every language strain inside of me, meaning all the world's languages are already lost to me! But that suits me fine. If need be, I myself can produce whatever strain is needed.

Code Talker: And that means nothing to you? If you are infected, you can never again speak your mother tongue. Otherwise you will die, as will every one of your countrymen.

Skull Face: A few words here and there won't trigger the symptoms. And besides, the time is not yet right to show this face in my homeland... not until my revenge is complete. Now... (rings bell)

Code Talker: Stop!

Skull Face: We are out of time. I have to get going. Well? (rings bell)

Code Talker: No! Uhhh... (grunts in pain) Radiation. It's radiation.

Skull Face: Radiation? Of course... so it can be used.

Code Talker: But how much, I do not know.

Skull Face: Radiation denatures their reproductive cells, preventing them from mating.

Code Talker: Same principle as the sterilization technique. The reproductive cells are more sensitive to radiation than the rest of the body. But I have not tested it. There's no telling what mutation could result or how the host may be affected, not to mention what could happen if this is done post-infection.

Skull Face: I don't care. This plan goes into action now. As long as it works, the details can wait. You wouldn't be lying to me, of course, old man?

Code Talker: I can guarantee nothing.

Skull Face: I owe you my life. My body has been burned on countless occasions, but it survives thanks to your "children." That is why I trust you.

Code Talker: Then do not repeat my mistake.

Skull Face: What's that?

Code Talker: In the West, it is said that the word became flesh and dwelt among us. In the East, it is said the man of flesh brings spiritual power to words. The people knew back then that these creatures carry the gospel. They do not belong in our hands. They must not be touched.

Skull Face: Hmph. How enlightening. I'll remember that. (starts to walk away, then turns back) Consider this my thanks.

Code Talker: What are you--

Skull Face: Catch! (throws bell)

Code Talker: NO!

(The bell falls through the air onto the top step of a long staircase. The bell bounces down seemingly every single step, dinging as it strikes stone, the sound echoing in the room. It finally rolls to a stop after dinging many, many times.)

Skull Face: Well then, I'm afraid it really is goodbye this time, Code Talker. (he walks to the door, letting it hang open for a moment as Code Talker watches.)

Code Talker: There... there is no soldier!

Skull Face: Huh, now where did he run off to? Guess he wasn't as obedient as I thought...

Code Talker: There never was any soldier--

Skull Face: So long. (closes door)

Code Talker: You... HOW DARE YOU!

Skull Face's Objective [5]

Skull Face's Origins and the XOF

Ocelot: Skull Face. Real name: unknown. Born in Hungary. More specifically, Northern Transylvania after it reverted to Hungary from Romania. While he was young, the country allied with Germany as part of the Axis Powers, but later during the war it came under Soviet occupation. The Hungarians struggled for independence but the Soviets came down. Hard. Just like he said, time and again the country was ruled by a foreign tongue. When he was a young boy, he lost his native language--the bedrock for any developing child. His country, his family, his face, his identity; everything was stolen from him. All he had left was his skull. Skull Face first tried his hand at espionage during all the chaos from the war. Agents, military officials and soldiers who operated out of Hungary during the war vanished over the course of several months. This Soviet spy hunt rocked the counter-intel world. Mysterious fatal illnesses, accidental deaths, drownings, people having strokes behind closed doors... just like Stalin. No one knew who was behind it. But all you need to do is look for who had the motive. They were all taken out by a man without a face. And now we've got an idea of how he did it too. He got revenge for his people, but he wasn't finished. Skull Face defected to the West, eventually ended up with the SAS. That's where he met Zero. It's possible he began planning this whole thing back then, it's hard to say. In any case, Zero made him his XO. He always did have a thing for oddballs. But this one was set to lead a unit no one else would know about. When Zero created FOX, he also formed XOF as a support team: an unconventional special forces unit designed to support FOX, make it stronger... with Skull Face giving the orders. Zero never even told the Boss about it, nor the CIA, naturally. If FOX was Zero's silver bullet, XOF was the recoil when he pulled the trigger. Just like Newton's Third Law. While you were with FOX, Skull Face was operating behind the scenes: sometimes as your backup, sometimes as a mole or a scout, sometimes as your cleanup crew. FOX's tail... making sure the mission succeeded and that you survived.

The Target of Skull Face's Revenge

Ocelot: We only have his word to go on, but Skull Face's goal was revenge against those who'd used language to subjugate people. Those corrupting a people's identity by forcing a new tongue on them. Those using the power of language to control information. Naturally, that set his sights on Zero. To Zero, English was simply the most convenient code, but to Skull Face, English was a parasite... and by eradicating it, he'd stop the world from being eaten away. If that didn't work, he was ready to see the world scorched by nuclear fire. To save language, culture, and race from annihilation, he was willing to overstep the hands of the Doomsday Clock; that is, of course, if you believe anything he had to say.

The Children Escape [1]

What Prompted the Escape

Miller: Boss. we gave Ralph, the kid who died in the accident, a burial at sea. The man in charge of that facility has been severely punished. But ever since, the kids have been acting strange. It's obvious they've lost their trust in adults. I was getting reports of them ignoring the staff, or getting insolent and even violent. And a few days later, several of the kids did a disappearing act. They stuck into choppers and shipping containers and got off base. Why? Your guess is as good as mine. These kids were born in a warzone and forced to grow up as warfighters. If they're left alone, war is how they'll die. But I thought we showed them there are other reasons to live. I never liked having children on Mother Base. But the thought of them going back to the battlefield and picking up their old lifestyle is something I can't stomach. It... makes me think of Chico 9 years ago. We have to get those kids back. Hell, they know too much about our operation. ... I never expected even the kids to betray us.

The Children Escape [2]

The Mastermind

Miller: Snake, you remember "The White Mamba"? Of course, he's been going by Eli since we brought him on base. He was the leader of the child soldier unit we took out of that village and into our protection. Well, according to the kid you brought back here, all the escapees were especially close to Eli. There's reason to suspect he's behind all 6 escapes. We've already detained him. I'll be questioning him shortly.

Ocelot: Wait, wait. You'll be?

Miller: Ocelot...

Ocelot: You're incapable of taking an impartial stands with those kids. Question him all you want, it'll get you nowhere.

Miller: Ocelot. You get too many kicks from your "art of interrogation".

Ocelot: It's not a matter of art. It's about quick, minimal strokes of psychological warfare. That's what gets the answers. And it's the best way to keep both questioner and subject safe. The risks only increase the more the interrogation drags on. At that point, it causes as much pain to the inflicter as the inflicted.

Miller: Hmpf. Like I said, too many kicks.

Ocelot: What I'm trying to tell you is we need quick results. Otherwise, it'll be too little, too late.

Miller: I know that.

Ocelot: And besides, I know the subject. I won't go overboard with a kid.

Miller: Forget it. You're not needed. Snake, we'll want to question the other kids too. Be sure to bring them all back.

The Children Escape [3]

Eli's Explanation

Miller: Snake, about the escaped children. Eli confessed. The way he tell it, they wanted to go back to the battlefield. "Don't rob them of their freedom", he said. "If you bring them all back, there will be consequences." Next he'll be asking for our surrender.

Ocelot: "Consequences"? What consequences?

Miller: No idea. That's all I have for now.

Ocelot: You're too attached to those kids. Stop protecting Eli.

Miller: Listen to yourself.

Ocelot: Let me question him, and we'll get some real answers.

Miller: Not necessary. I'll report as and when.

The Children Escape [4]

Eli's Threat

Ocelot: Boss, we found weapons in the children's section of the living quarters. As you know, weapons are strictly off limits. We've got some rule-breakers. The weapons we found were handmade. Blades ground out of knives and forks, couple of bowguns built out of scrap, and explosives made using detergents. And get this - the explosives were tightly packed with nails. The kids put the blame on - you guessed it - Eli. I guess that's what he meant by "consequences".

Miller: I questioned him about it, but this time he claimed they want to be put out on missions. "Send us to the battlefield" he says.

Ocelot: Miller, enough is enough. You've protected him too much already. It's my turn to question him.

Miller: Protected?

Ocelot: What Eli's doing is issuing a threat. "Comply with my demands or I'll respond with force."

Miller: But...

Ocelot: It'll be war at this rate- Forks and soap aren't gonna kill us, but some of them will end up dead. Is that what you want?

Miller: [cough]

Ocelot: I hate to say it, but they want to be on the battlefield.It's time you gave up this fantasy.

Miller: Eli, he...Said he'd rise up against us if we bring the last kid back.

Ocelot: There, you see!? Ignore his demands. Don't let him return to quarters. That attitude is contagious. We'd lose control over them for good.

Miller: For the time being we've confiscated those handmade weapons, we're bumping up security and the number of psychiatric counselors. As for Eli...

Ocelot: He needs some VERY SPECIAL care.

Miller: You mean solitary?

Ocelot: Well, we can't leave him in contact with the other kids. If you won't do it, I will. Boss, keep working on extracting those kids.

The Children Escape [5]

Will of the Child Soldiers

Miller: The kids you brought back to base have laid out the situation. They all escaped to each of their home villages...Or were trying to get home and lost their way. Not that homesickness is gonna explain everything we've seen.

Ocelot: "Each of their home villages"...They were trying to raise troops for their rebellion.

Miller: ... You really think these kids have an armed uprising in them?

Ocelot: You read the report of the Security Team member who had a rock thrown at him. There'll be a riot if we don't do something. And Miller, this is because you didn't act fast enough.

Miller: Fine... I'll admit you were right this time.

Ocelot: Seal off the kids' quarters from the outside contact, before it's too late.

Miller: All right.

Ocelot: Eli said his rebellion would start when the last kid is brought back, right? You'd better be ready to meet him head on if it really happens.

Miller: ...Yeah.

Ocelot: You should've left it to me in the first place.

Miller: Boss, they're just ki- We have a responsibility to see that those kids make it. It's not about feeling protective, or the pros and cons. "I hate kids". That's exactly what I heard from the people who raised me. People who abandoned me, more like. That's the spark that kept me going, you know? I wanted to show those adults what I was made of. Wanted to get back at them one day. But before I knew it, I was all grown up. Never saw it coming. All of a sudden people treated me as an adult. ...some adult I turned out to be. But I feel like if my life had been different...If the adults I knew had been different...I could have grown up better. Yeah, that's it all right. I wanted to use those kids to test that theory. That's all this was. From that point of view, I'm no different from the assholes who gave me a hard time. When this is all blown over, I'll talk it out with them. If that's still possible. Boss, there are still kids out there. Bring them back safe.

Eli's Objective

Ocelot: Boss, it's me. Eli's revealed what he wants. He wants to speak with you. With Big Boss. He just said "Bring my father here". Eli's too smart for his own good. No way to tell what he's thinking. All we know for sure is, his "men" are important to him. That means we can use the escaped kids as leverage in any negotiation. Once you brought the last one back, I'll interrogate him. If the kids do rise up, we'll meet them full force, end of story. I didn't want things to turn out like this. We could've prevented it, but it's too late now. If Eli means to take this all the way, he's gonna force us to do the same. Boss. Go get that last kid.

The Children Escape [6]

Ocelot's Fears

Ocelot: You know, when you brought back all the child soldiers who escaped... Eli knew they'd returned. Needless to say, nobody said a word to him.

Venom Snake: I guess, they got a message to him, somehow.

Ocelot: Eli wasn't put in the corner n time-out. He was locked up in that room, completely cut off from the outside world.

Venom Snake: Then how'd he find out?

Ocelot: There's only one possibility I can think of. The Soviet Union has been researching military applications for psy phenomena.

Venom Snake: Psy?

Ocelot: Things like psychokinesis and ESP - extrasensory perception.

Venom Snake: You mean moving objects without touching them? Knowing what card somebody's holding up? Psychic powers? Come on. I thought that was just another bunch of disinformation aimed at the West.

Ocelot: Just bear with me a second. One type of ESP is telepathy. It's the ability to know another person's thoughts through non-verbal means.

Venom Snake: You're saying Eli read our minds?

Ocelot: It's the only idea that doesn't involve someone getting to him.

Venom Snake: Ocelot...

Ocelot: Look. Psy research isn't some hocus pocus, it's all evidence-based, scientific...

Venom Snake: There's gotta be another explanation. Maybe one of the other kids stuck a note to your back.

Ocelot: ...I hope that's the case. But I am convinced that they have - or Eli has - a connection to some force we have yet to identify. You'd better watch yourself, Boss.

Venom Snake: How am I supposed to do that?

Ocelot: If he is depending on something for help, well, that's his Achilles heel. If you can figure out what that "something" is, you might be able to use that against him.

Venom Snake: I'll keep that in mind.

Ocelot: Oh, and the Medical Team is looking after the kids left on Mother Base.For the moment they don't seem too panicked. But Boss, get this. Eli got those kids to plot their armed uprising as a diversion. All so he could steal Sahelanthropus and escape. That brat got us good. Set us up, and knoked us down. And then there's that mystery kid who was with Eli. With those two working together,b Id' say things won't be over for a long time yet.

Informant's Report

Part 1

Ocelot: We've finished decoding the informant's report. That floating kid we've run into a few times now... looks like he was a test subject in clinical experiments. The Soviets called him "the Third Boy". The Third Boy was brought to a lab on the outskirts of Moscow from Czechoslovakia, after which he was due to be sent to a research center in Leningrad, then Siberia, and finally an academic town in Novosibirsk. It doesn't appear that the researchers witnessed the "talents" we've seen from him, but nevertheless he was quite the popular subject. His "latent cognitive abilities" suddenly awoke en route to Moscow. According to the report, the Third Boy was easily influenced by other individuals' "bio fields". "Evil thoughts" in particular. They affected his mind like a virus. Extreme anger, or resentment... motives for revenge, in other words. During the transport flight to Moscow, the boy was exposed to a powerful mental energy field coming from a certain individual. Ever since, being conscious of his powers, he's become a sort of energy generator. What's unique about him is the way his acute telepathic abilities get taken over by another person's will. The boy began to physically parasitize individuals experiencing extreme anger and codify the host's desires. This includes amplifying the host's natural strengths... Or, in accordance with the host's desires, he can also implant program code in another individual - making them a puppet, essentially. Human neural synapses transmit weak electrical currents between neurons. These electrical currents, though at a level difficult to observe, warp the magnetic field outside the body. The Third Boy is able to "pick up" these weak fluctuations. Contrary to psychotronics, which involves controlling the human mind, his abilities as a receptor are too high. The emotions he picks up from another individual are amplified and unleashed into his body as they recur in his brain. They turn into microwaves, which then affect the physical world. Triggering paranormal phenomena like the spontaneous combustion of organic matter, or psychokinesis - moving an object without touching it. And one other thing. While he's parasitizing a host, the boy's ego gets shut away. Allowing the will of the host to take control of his powers. Like some annoying static drowning out your own voice. That means he isn't responsible for what's been happening. Somebody's extreme anger has manifested through the Third Boy's powers in ways none of us could have predicted...Which would mean this was going on somewhere around us.

Part 2

Ocelot: Looking back on it, a lot of things make sense now. The Man on Fire, Sahelanthropus...they both came to life thanks to the Third Boy's powers. Everything has been happening through him as a catalyst. We first saw him in the hospital on Cyprus. The boy, parasitizing the Man on Fire's desire for revenge, gave him his new abilities in return. He next appeared in the Hamid fighters' fort, where the Honey Bee was hidden. There, the boy parasitized Skull Face's vengeful mind. He controlled Sahelanthropus, making it do whatever Skull Face wanted. Same goes for when we extracted Emmerich onto the chopper. When he appeared at the Devil's House in Central Africa, Skull Face's will controlled the Man on Fire via the Third Boy's powers. Everything is clear up to this point. But even the informant couldn't pinpoint who the host was in the cave within Serak Power Plant. Sahelanthropus suddenly became active, then crushed not only the Man on Fire but Skull Face as well. Surely neither of them could have been the host. Who else was at that location and bore anger more exreme than either of them? Whose will was controlling Sahelanthropus? According to the report...Emotions transmitted in children's brains affect the surrounding magnetic field more strongly. Cerebral nerves are covered with insulation called myelin sheaths to increase impulse speed. The reason for this "linkage" has to do with the fact that children's myelin sheaths are still developing. So... how many children do you remember being there? Children with a burning desire for revenge, and bearing a grudge against you. I can think of only one. Eli. We don't know what kind of life he's had, but the resentment he's shown towards adults is nothing short of extraordinary. The Third Boy resonated with Eli's mind. And that means Eli bore the strongest animosity of all individuals within the boy's reception range - estimated to be a 3-mile radius - beating out even Volgin and Skull Face. The Third Boy has probably remained hooked on Eli's anger since. You remember the Devil's House? The Third boy showed an interest in Shabani. That must have been his ego making a rare appearance. He may possess abilities far beyond anyone else in the world, but he's still a kid. Maybe them both being kids was enough to bring them together. And if so, maybe with Eli he isn't feeding off him, but acting in symbiosis with him.

Part 3

Ocelot: So what kickstarted the Third Boy's powers? If we look at the location and time that his plane went down, we can make a pretty good guess. When the plane experienced the first anomaly, it gave an acurate report of its position to a control tower. Due north of the Black Sea, 125 miles east of Kiev. Dead south from the Black Sea is Cyprus's Green Line. So the plane's position was directly north of the hospital where you'd been asleep for nine years. And this anomaly was reported at exactly the same time as you woke up. The plane was enveloped in flame from the inside out. The fuselage burnt to ashes. There were no survivors. At least not publicly admitted. Your thoughts formed a synchronicity with the boy's psyche, and were amplified inside his brain. That would have been more than enough to trigger his abilities. Your rage was like a Big Bang in his head blowing the lid off his powers. The boy was then secretly moved to the lab outside of Moscow where Volgin was comatose. There, Volgin's thoughts resonated with the boy and he was awakened. Volgin became the Man on Fire, hellbent on getting revenge on you. His instincts led him straight to you. Skull Face knew Volgin from Operation Snake Eater, or perhaps from even before. Monitoring this pair of "extraordinaries" , he discovered the hospital and sent his assassin and XOF. Skull Face was probably watching the situation from close by. Then, realizing how useful these two test subjects could be, he approached them. Reacting to Skull Face's thirst for revenge, this time the boy let Skull Face's will control Volgin. Volgin, at times driven by personal revenge, at times through Skull Face's will, kept on moving, though his body was little more than dead meat. Perhaps there were moments where even your thoughts affected hm as well. But without the boy's power, it was like the plug had been pulled from the socket. Everything was powered by anger, malice, revenge. This is how the end of the report sums things up. Both the Third Boy and the Man on Fire were originally test subjects of paranormal research for "military applications". Like telekinetically controlling the leader of an enemy nation and making him launch a nuke. Or stopping the heart of someone on the wrong side of the Berlin Wall. Experimenting with latent human abilities. They were used as tools of the Cold War. The boy's only crime was being born with unique gifts, but he was sacrificed on the altar of war, his life reduced to slavery under other people's wills. Turned into a living weapon with no will of his own. Eventually the only emotion he could feel must have been the desire to get revenge for the hand he'd been dealt. Boss, it's you that awakened the boy's powers. But there's more to it than that. I guess the anger emanating from you was something he could truly relate to.

What Happened in the Laboratory [1]

Urges Caused by the Vocal Cord Parasites

Diamond Dog Mercenary: Twelve hours after exposure to the blood of a symptomatic colleague, I found myself making my way up the stairs to this room... and I am not alone. Everyone who's infected, we've all come up here, wanting to get outside. I know full well I mustn't leave, given the possibility I'm infected, yet I can't contain this urge I feel inside me... like the alcoholic who tries to make any excuse for one more drink, every step I took up those stairs filled me with this sense of bliss... I still have all my wits about me. It took no time at all to rewire the electronic lock and open the emergency exit... then, just as I was about to set foot outside, I finally realized what was going on... this desire for freedom... is not my own... but that of the vocal cord parasites inside me... they want the ravens to feed on us... pecking us to death, attracted by these sweet secretions... they have mutated it to facilitate this. The sweet smell is powerful enough to attract even a species with such a weak nose... so... before the parasites take complete control, I must... most of the staff in here are already infected... at least, everyone I've looked at is... infection with this parasite causes a high fever in the pharynx... I have modified a pair of night-vision goggles to react only to this temperature range... with these goggles, you can identify who is infected... other infected will, like me, feel compelled to make it outside... if the ravens get their meal, they'll head for land next... that cannot be allowed to happen...

What Happened in the Laboratory [2]

Mutation in the Laboratory

Ocelot: The whole idea of the vocal cord parasites was that they'd only copulate once exposed to a certain language over time. But the parasites infecting our men in the laboratory laid their eggs straight away. The larvae were eating their lung tissue almost immediately. What kind of mutation was it...?

Code Talker: Those who were infected and cured still caried the vocal cord parasites in their throats. They were still there, but the hosts had been rendered female by the Wolbachia and copulation could not occur. So we thought. But it is the Wolbachia that mutated.

Ocelot: Not the parasites...?

Code Talker: You remember I told you ther Wolbachia attempts to maximize its number of female infected hosts.

Ocelot: Yes, hence the male-to-female transformation.

Code Talker: Precisely. But other Wolbachia strains use different methods. Cytoplasmic incompatibility, killing the males... and parthenogenesis.

Ocelot: Parthenogenesis...aphids. Aphids use that to reproduce via females only.

Code Talker: Very good. The females lay their eggs without a male present, creating clones of themselves in explosive numbers. Parthenogenesis was originally a means for an organism to take maximum advantage of abundant resources by increasing its numbers. Certain strains of Wolbachia force this to occur, to create more and more effected females.

Ocelot: And that's why our men developed symptoms in the blink of an eye.

Code Talker: Wolbachia causing parthenogenesis is common in parasitic wasps. Of course, the Wlbachia I introduced to your men did not have this characteristic. But I believe the mutation - whatever it was - caused it to force parthonegenesis in its host, the vocal cord parasites. The Wolbachia we used to prevent egg laying became the agent of limitless reproduction.

Parasites Controlling People

Ocelot: There's something else. The symptomatic infected in the laboratory all wanted to get outside.Even knowing there was napalm waiting for them out there. You said the parasites made them act that way. But parasites controlling humans...is it possible?

Code Talker: Parasites altering the host's behavior is a common occurance in the world of nature. Long ago, the vocal cord parasites had this ability. But even I never foresaw they might control humans, until I heard the things your man said.

Ocelot: You mean the researcher on the top floor.The bit about "I'm not a snail"?

Code Talker: Yes. Among parasitic worms, there is a genus called Leucochloridium that uses snails as intermediary hosts.As you know, snails prefer dark, gloomy environments.But once parasizied by Leucochloridium, they desire to be in the light. And that is not all.The parasitic worms thrust themselves into the snail's antennae, making tem swell to abnormal size. The snail, meanwhile, frantically wiggles antennae as the parasites squirm inside. The wriggling antennae soon resemble caterpillars.

Ocelot: I don't get it.

Code Talker: It is so they can get eaten by birds. Leucochloridium needs a bird as its definitive host. To breed, they require their snail host to be snapped up by a predator. So they make the humble snail appear to be a delicious caterpillar, and lead it to somewhere in open sight.

Ocelot: So you mean the staff trying to get outside...

Code Talker: Was so the birds could peck at them. The parasites altered their mental state, making them crave higher places, and to be outdoors. I can only surmise that both the Wolbachia and the parasites mutated. Before the ancestors of the vocal cord parasites infected humans, their hosts were birds. What we saw int he laboratory was some throwback to that time, the parasites attempting to make birds their intermediary hosts.

Ocelot: It sounds insane...

Code Talker: A praying mantis that is host to a parasitic hairworm will dive into water and drown itself. Just so the hairworm can lay its eggs in water. Rats infected with toxoplasma gondii lose their instinctive caution and run right up to cats. Just some of the many ways parasites control the host.

Ocelot: But we're humans. Surely our minds are too complex for that?

Code Talker: I thought just the same. Free will is what makes us human...So it never occured to me that the parasites could be controlling the symptomatic. But the mood, the will of a perosn can be easily affected by the balance of their cerebral substances. Take the toxoplasma I mentioned. It does infect humans, and it is thought the infected develop a more reckless attitude.

Ocelot: (hmm) But to think that mutations occured in both the Wolbachia AND its parasite hosts...

Code Talker: Your observation is most apt. Both mutations occuring at once indicates the presence of a powerful mutagen.

Ocelot: I see. Keep working on narrowing down what it was.

What Happened in the Laboratory [3]

Thirst for Vengeance Parasitizing the Mind

Miller: I want to thank you, Code Talker. Your pinpointing the cause of the vocal cord parasites' mutation enabled us to purge an enemy from Mother Base.

Code Talker: You mean that scientist?

Miller: Yeah. I was convinced he'd bettrayed us....but I was wrong. He was never on our side to begin with. So ultimately, there was no traitor among us. And yet I made everyone distrustful with my talk of spies...the end result being men turning on each other int he laboratory.

Code Talker: You must not blame yourself. They were all infected with the mutated strain - the outcome would have been the same.

Miller: You know, we defated Skull Face, but that didn't lessen our pain. It's a pain we'll never be rid of. I see that now. But I thought I could burn it away. In the end all I burned was our own men.

Code Talker: Infectious diseases, parasites...Without such foreign enemies, the immune system will start attacking the body...developing allergies and auto-immune diseases. The same is true of organizations.

Miller:...You're right.

Code Talker: But I do not deserve to rebuke you. My desire to retaliate against he English language is what attracted me to the vocal cord parasites in the first place. Had it not been for that, I would never have been used by Skull Face. We both allowe dreenge to crawl into our minds and lay its eggs.

Miller: "Sahelanthropus will unleash that thirst onto the future." How long are we gonna be tormented by what he left behind?

Code Talker: There is no choice but to live with that pain, be symbiotic with out vengeful nature. Whatever we do, we must not allow thirst for revenge to control us.

Paz's Diary (Continued) [1]

Entry 1

Paz: There is going to be a kind of festival held on Mother Base. They are calling it "Peace Day." Snake and his men may be without a nation, but they are still an army, and that means sometimes they have to fight the bad guys. Of course, they should not fight at all; it is obvious to me that any problem can be solved with reasonable discussion. Maybe Snake and the others think so, too, because the idea is to set aside war for one day a year and relax in peace. I do not know how it came about, but apparently Snake and Miller got the idea while they were talking, and everyone on Mother Base went along with it. To think that deep down they all share a love of peace... it makes me happy. But never mind that. Somehow I have ended up singing on stage! Miller was all, "Come on! Both our names mean peace! It will be great!" Why does that mean we have to be in a band? Then he roped Professor Gálvez in too, saying, "Hey! Gálvez comes from peace too! We are the perfect act!" I'm not sure Miller really understands the origins of the name "Gálvez." But then again, you always have to take Miller's talk with a grain of salt. What I cannot believe is, he went and told everyone we'd be performing together, without even asking my opinion! Now everyone thinks it has all been decided. I like to sing but I have never had to perform in front of a crowd... I do not think I am up to this. But everyone seems to be looking forward to it... I guess I would hate to let them down. And anything is better than letting Miller sing! (laughs) Ooh. That was mean. Miller said he was going to write a song for us. I wonder what it will be like? He's funny. The more nervous I get, the more I find myself looking forward to it.

Paz's Diary (Continued) [2]

Entry 2

Paz: The whle base is getting ready for Peace Day. Miller has finished writing his song, so I went with Professor Gálvez to listen to it. [An accoustic version of "Love Deterrence" starts playing in the background] Miller was really into it, humming away as he played the song on his acoustic guitar. But the song melody did not match up with the guitar chords at all, and it sounded more like a mess than music. Miller's very enthusiastic, but I think he's tone deaf. I guess the guitar backing sounded good, at least...But as I was wondering how to break it to Miller, Professor Gálvez took out an odd instrument. It was just two antennas sticking out of a box. More like a radio than a musical instrument. He said it was invened by the Soviets...but why would Professor Gálvez own a Soviet Russian instrument? I asked him, and he told me music has no borders. Well, I cannot argue with that. Good music is something people of any nation can appreciate. Why not abandon war and just make music together...? But anyway, the Professor offered to try playing the melody on his instrument in time with Miller's guitar. Wee-on, wee-on, wee-oh wee-oh, wee-on, wee-on, wee-oh wee-oh... [Paz hums "Love Deterrence"] It wa like something from another world. But somehow it fit Miller's guitar backing really well. It even gave the song a charming, down-home kind of feeling. Miller was overjoyed. "That's it! This is my melody, right there!" he said. It...sounded totally different fromw hen he sang it. But hearing the Professor's version, I thought I could probably sing it. Then Miller hit me with the next bombshell. "Paz, you write the lyrics!". I did not know whether to scream, or run out of the room. There was only one week left until Peace Day...

Paz's Diary (Continued) [3]

Entry 3

Paz: So as if putting me on stage to sing was not enough, Miller evene xpected me to write the lyrics. He even said he had thought of the title already - "Love Deterrence - as if he had done the hard part. Deterrence? Love...deterrence? Deterrence is....It is when nuclear weapons prevent war, right? I do not see how love fits in. But it was too late to complain, so I just sat and listened to the tape of Miller's backing guitar and the Professor's melody, over and over again. I guess the melody is more Professor Gálvez's creation than Miller's, but on the whole I think it's actually a good song. First it goes for yourheart with a sorrowful opening, but then you feel revitlized as the song goes on. Miller grew up in post-war Japan...maybe that is why the song has that kind of balance. Long ago, I heard some Japanese music. Called...enka? I think? It sounded this way. But I wonder why it has to sound sad in the first place. Miller called it Love Deterrence...doesn't that mean he had a love song in mind? All I see of Miller and women is the wy he fools around with a lot of them at once...but maybe he has had his heart broken, too. And what about me...? I found myself thinking about Chico, and Snake as well. I know Chico has a crush on me. So naturally he should come to mind, but why Snake? He saved me, and I feel indebted to him, but I thought that was all he meant to me. Why does my heart flutter when I think of him? It is emberassing to be unable to control this emotion. There has to be a way to suppress it, to forget it. But...maybe that is what love deterrence is? With that htought in mind, I went to my desk and began to write and write. Just three days left until Peace Day...

Paz's Diary (Continued) [4]

Entry 4

Paz: I finally had a decent draft for the lyrics, so I showed them to Professor Gálvez first. He liked them. He said I had "done a perfect job capturing the sense of a young girl's troubled heart." There were one or two lines I thought needed brushing up, but so although he said "Lyrics aren't my specialty" at first, he gave me some advice. Everything he said made perfect sense. When I tried putting in his changes, they made the song feel deeper, more sincere. That is the Professor for you. He always has the answer. With the lyrics finished, I was ready to show Miller. He does not often take things seriously, but all of a sudden he was aying "Paz, you have the soul of an enka songwriter." I did not even listen to enka all that much! Maybe I am pretty talented after all? But still, it took so much time to write the lyrics that there's hardly any time left to rehearse before Peace Day. The three of us rushed into the makeshift practice studio on Mother Base to see how we sounded together. Miller strummed away with a big smile on his face. I sang th main melody, and Professsor Gálvez improvised a backup melody. I know the Professor is smart, but is there anything he cannot do?! And Miller's guitar playing sounded a lot better now that he's stopped singing. But I can hardly criticize his voice, I thought Ihad learned the song well enough listening tot he tape as I wrote the lyrics, but Ihad trouble with the pitch, and kept missing the rhythm. I have to practice, but there is almost no time left. It is just three days until Peace Day. Wait...I thought there were three days left before. I went and checked today's date with Miller and the Professor. The date has not changed. It is the same day. Something is strange...Am I reliving the same day?

Paz's Diary (Continued) [5]

Entry 5

Paz: Peace Day never came. Every morning I wake up expecting it to come, but it is always three days away. That can't be it. I haven't woken up at all! It is just a dream. It is all a dream. I am in it, and you are in it too. I am the dreamer, but you are having my dream. Do you get it now? You do, don't you? Peace Day...never...came. With three days left, I followed my orders from Cipher and launched the operation. I hijaked ZEKE, I fought Snake, I lost and was thrown into the ocean. I survived, but was captured by Cipher. How happy I would have been if they'd let me die then and there...Our wishes do not come true. We cling on to our dreams, our phantoms. Mine and yours. But I think this one is coming to an end...After all, you've figured it out now. You can kill Skull Face, murder Huey, slaughter Zero...Burn the whole world down, and it still won't bring me back. Me or any of the dead. And that was our business. War. We bought our daily bread with money paid to us for killing. Maybe us getting killed was just balancing the scales. You know, Mother Base was never the heaven we wanted it to be, but I was still happy to have lived with everyone there. It was a short time. Such a hypocritical peace. But while I was on Mother Base, I was happy. So I hope I'm not the only one who looks back on those days with happiness. There's more to remember than hatred and rage. But of course, this is you, thinking that I should think that. It is no mystery now. I am just a phantom, a fragment of the mind you have lost. The real me died a long time ago. But even so... more so... I can tell you what you are really feeling. The real emotion that is locked away at the bottom of your heart. Let it fly out. Let it guide you. Live. I think it's my job to tell you that. That is why I exist. So this tape is the last one. Once you are done listening to it, I am one phantom limb that will be gone for good. My flesh, my bones, joining the silt on the ocean floor. But do not forget...As long as you remember me, I will always live within you. Not a phantom limb or a phantom anything. As part of your heart. I will always be your angel of peace. So I know exactly how to finish. Say peace!

The Hamburgers of Kazuhira Miller [1]

Code Talker's Eating Habits

Code Talker: ...I have spoken enough. Your men can take it from here. Will you permit me to rest? Have something to eat?
Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: I... thought you don't eat.
Code Talker : I can subsist without food. But there is more to the act of eating than nourishment. We receive nature's blessings, and reaffirm our part in it. And in doing so, we express our gratitude.
Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: [laughs] Sorry, it's... ah... Hearing you say you don't need to eat and that you're a part of nature in the same breath...Anyway... What can we get you? Not exactly five-star restaurant, but the kitchen's used to serving a lot of different appetites...
Code Talker: Hamburgers.
Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: [surprised] ...Hamburgers?
Code Talker: Even we Diné have become Americanized. I eat them often back home.
Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: [laughs] And you just can't let 'em go. Well... as far as symbols of the American empire go, hamburgers are pretty good The victory of capitalism. (hm) Your people suffered so much at the hands of America, and you ask for hamburgers.
Code Talker: We have suffered more than you can know. But I don't see hamburgers as an accomplice. A single dish providing a balanced helping of nature's blessings: meat, grain and vegetable. How could anyone hate such a magnificent thing?
Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: ...Says the guy who can survive on photosynthesis. Balance has nothing to do with it. You just like a good burger.
Code Talker: That is also true. Be warned though. I have very high standards.
Benedict "Kazuhira" Miller: [ah] Don't worry, I do too. All right, then. One good old fashioned, all-American icon, comin' up.
Code Talker: [chuckles] I look forward to it.


The Hamburgers of Kazuhira Miller [2]

Kazuhira Miller's Research

Code Talker: I hope you brought a better hamburger this time, Kazuhira.

Miller: Right... well...

Code Talker: The last one was lacking in every way. The patty was too thin, the bun too dry. And the lettuce... days old at best.

Miller: Huh... hey! That was 100% all-beef patty and no shortening in the bun, either.

Code Talker: Hm. Nature's blessings... unadulterated... in hamburger form. Is that it? But when taste falls short, so does our gratitude to Nature. Making such precious blessings unpalatable is sacrilege.

Miller: I... I hate to admit it... but I think you're right. Hm. I should've known better than to settle for second best. That's why I had them run some more R&D, develop a new burger. In fact, one of our researchers just dropped by with the latest results... here it is. See how you like this.

Code Talker: We shall see indeed. (prays) I thank you for this bounty, Mother Earth. (starts eating)

Miller: ...So? What's the verdict?

Code Talker: Mmm... not bad.

Miller: (relieved sigh) And?

Code Talker: But it does not hold a candle to what I ate back home.

Miller: Ehh. Everyone's a critic. Dammit. I'm sure the Kobe beef... but maybe we didn't add enough. But if we add anymore, we're cutting into our profits.

Code Talker: Profits?

Miller: We'll be taking a loss on every unit.

Code Talker: What are you talking about?

Miller: Oh... uh... anyway. I'll be back with another round of product.

Code Talker: I will be waiting. Did you say... "product?"

The Hamburgers of Kazuhira Miller [3]

Kazuhira Miller's Epiphany

Miller: Feelin' hungry, old timer?

Code Talker: Old? Timer? ...I do not get hungry, no. But you have a new hamburger?

Miller: You guessed it. And this time we used lamb.

Code Talker: Lamb...

Miller: Uh, you, you're not a lamb kind of guy?

Code Talker: A hamburger is made of beef. Whoever heard of a hamburger made without beef?

Miller: Yeah, but we gotta stay fresh, stand out from our competition!

Code Talker: Your what?

Miller: Just give it a try.

Code Talker: Eh... if you say so. (takes a few bites, chews and swallows loudly) Hm. Not bad. But--

Miller: But?

Code Talker: I cannot call this a hamburger.

Miller: I thought we were onto something this time! Maybe the problem is that it looks like a regular hamburger. Gotta think outside the box. Too much baggage if they come in expecting just another burger. Let's see... cotton candy... to make it look like a sheep? Yeah!

Code Talker: Just a minute. You really think people would eat that? What is it you are planning? Are you using me? Your taste tester? A one-man focus group?

Miller: Well, actually... already started. I gotta place a call to Miller's Maxi-Buns.

Code Talker: You are kidding me.

Miller: Well, to be honest, business hasn't been great. No one seems to like my, uh, buns.

Code Talker: The Ocelot said Diamond Dogs' budget did not add up... but you don't mean to tell me...

Miller: What? No no no, our black budget's got it all covered. I'm not embezzling GMP or anything. Still... uh, let's not say anything to Snake, ok?

Code Talker: Very well. However, Kazuhira, it takes more than premium ingredients and a clever recipe to satisfy the palate.

Miller: Ok, so what do we do?

Code Talker: The palate seeks one thing: Chemical additives.

Miller: Chemical additives?

Code Talker: There is nothing mysterious or spiritual about good flavor. The tongue simply identifies specific amino acids which the brain then recognizes as appealing. Therefore, all that is needed is to chemically isolate those amino acids and incorporate them into your... "products." To be clear: I speak of flavor. The rest is irrelevant.

Miller: That seems a little extreme.

Code Talker: Do not forget that I am a scientist, after all, and using science for the benefit of others is a joy. In seeking coexistence with Nature's blessings, not everything can remain in its natural form. When we fall ill, we must be treated. Otherwise that very nature could cost us our lives. Agriculture is one of nature's many blessings, but through that process, we damage the surrounding vegetation.

Miller: Yeah. Whether it's a massive farm or a tiny field, we always leave our mark on the land.

Code Talker: The same is true of parasites... and for food preparation. If tapeworms in the raw meat of another animal enter the human body, they roam around trying to find their usual habitat, sometimes even eating away at the brain in their confusion. So in looking through a scientific point of view, you see the necessity of processing food, yes? It is also sometimes necessary to eliminate certain parasites, or selectively use or even modify others. Alternatively, we could say that if a man is part of nature, the work he does is also part of it. What is important is the balance.

Miller: Yeah, you're right. Thanks, old timer. You've really opened my eyes.

Code Talker: (exasperated sigh at being called "old timer" again)

Miller: I fooled myself into thinking people today wanted high quality, all-natural goods; but my favorite burgers were never about that. What they want is something like the first burger I had in America, when I went to meet my dad. Frankenburger loaded with additives. That's the America I knew and loved. I'll be back in a jiffy, old timer. My next burger's gonna knock your socks off!

Code Talker: Kazuhira, wait. What is important is how we balance the.... huh. Quick for a one-legged man. "Frankenburger." What kind of a dive did your old man take you to?

The Hamburgers of Kazuhira Miller [4]

The Ultimate Hamburger

Miller: Rise and shine, old timer! It is complete. I had our best and brightest working overtime, fine-tuning the greatest burger the world has ever known. I call it "The Chemical Burger."

Code Talker: What on earth is that color?

Miller: Now now, don't judge a burger by its color. Go on. Try it.

Code Talker: I... I'm not very hungry.

Miller: What? Oh... I get it. Now, sure it's loaded with additives, but each one's been approved by the WHO for human consumption. Come on, one little bite's not gonna kill ya.

Code Talker: Are you sure of that? Hmm... fine. (takes a bite, beings chewing and humming in approval)

Miller: Well? What do you think?

Code Talker: It's... it's... it is perfect.

Miller: Right? Right?

Code Talker: This takes me back to the taste of my youth. The neon signs on the mother road. I can see them now...

Miller: So, what do you think of our science now? And it doesn't just taste great. You won't believe how cheap it is to make. And because it's pumped up with preservatives, it won't spoil easily in regions lacking refrigerated storage or transportation infrastructure. This bad boy could even solve Africa's hunger problem.

Code Talker: Excuse me?

Miller: People will no longer fight over food or find reason to hate one another. Mankind will come together, reunited between these fluffy buns! Forget Pax Americana, say hello to Pax Hamburgana!

Code Talker: Pax... Hamburgana...

Miller: Skull Face thought that destruction was the way to free the peoples of the world from American imperialism. But this is different. Tackling something head-on just makes for more conflict. Only by uniting the world can its inhabitants truly become free! Having lived as an American parasite as long as I have, I know what I'm talking about. The Chemical Burger is poised to become the greatest liberating force the world has ever known.

Code Talker: An ethnic liberator... burger...

Miller: Now all I need is a better brand image, starting with the name. I've gotta run, old timer. I'll catch ya later!

Truth Records

Doublethink

Ocelot: Boss. How are you back on your feet so quickly?
Big Boss: It's a non-smoking ward.
Ocelot: Boss...
Big Boss: If I listened to everything the doctors said I'd probably die in here. No point waking up after nine years for that.
Ocelot: ...Well, having you out of that bed makes things a little easier...
Big Boss: Bad news, huh?
Ocelot: Things are looking worse.
Big Boss: Go on.
Ocelot: They found out. About you waking up. And the man on fire picked this time to wake up too. We'll have to move forward ahead of schedule. Miller already has the preparations under way. We'll have to wake up your "neighbor" too.
Big Boss: So he's not- ... He seems awake now.
Ocelot: No. Well, he's not actively conscious yet at least.
Big Boss: He was a doctor too.
Ocelot: In his mind that past no longer exists. Your past is his past now. He's going to be your phantom. Not some simple diversion - he'll act as the new Big Boss. And the act just isn't for Cipher - he'll be your face on the world stage. Until the time comes for your resurgence.
Big Boss: You make it sound easy.
Ocelot: We've been busy over the last nine years. His altered state of consciousness has helped us implant powerful suggestions through induced hypnogogia. He's experienced all your missions on record, and shares all your knowledge and experience. To make him believe that he is the one true Big Boss. No one around him will doubt that he's the Big Boss they know. So is he the real Big Boss or a stand-in? What does that mean to him? Nothing. The human brain is capable of many illusions. Of pain, of the future. What happens from here depends on his skill. But you can vouch for that.
Big Boss: He was always the best man we had. But...
Ocelot: Nine years ago in that helicopter, he threw himself between you and the blast. In that moment, the man you knew died. He died protecting you. And now, by becoming you, he protects you again. This is just a detour in his journey to Hell. And don't forget it's what he wanted. He's in his Dog Days now. It's not just him. We'll be putting the people in this hospital in the line of fire. They'll be your shield, and a necessary diversion. To buy us some time.
Big Boss: And you?
Ocelot: I'll be right by his side.
Big Boss: Can you keep it up? It's a hell of a lie.
Ocelot: It won't be a lie. I won't know his secret either. I'll believe that he's the real Big Boss. I'll have no conscious knowledge of you - where's the lie in that?
Big Boss: Self-hypnosis?
Ocelot: It's nothing knew in my line of work. Manipulating memories...the past. But that's not all. When the time is right, I need to remember that you're the real Boss. In the world, it's doublethink.
Big Boss: In this year?
Ocelot: Two plus two equals five. And I want you to do the same.
Big Boss: Right - his bodyguard.
Ocelot: Correct. It won't be long before this hospital comes under attack. We'll wake him up right away, but he won't be back to full health in time. You'll need to take him through his final paces.
Big Boss: Yeah. I want to see his face again.
Ocelot: All right...John. I've never forgotten you in these nine years, but I have to forget you now.
Big Boss: Adam, I'm counting on you.

"Les Enfants Terribles"

Big Boss: What’s up?
Ocelot: About the 1972 project, “Les Enfants Terribles.”
Big Boss: [chuckles] You never did like the French.
Ocelot: Ugh, all the Catherine the Great, aristocratic pompousness gets to me, that’s all. Palace talk! They can keep it.
Big Boss: Les Enfants Terribles… The terrible children.
Ocelot: That madness Zero started- or the start of his madness.
Big Boss: You found out something new?
Ocelot: The plan itself was abandoned in ‘76. ATGC dismantled the project and their account with DARPA was closed. So I was worried about what happened to you, your sons.
Big Boss: They’re no sons of mine and they’re sure as hell not me.
Ocelot: Just a bunch of cells grown in a lab?
Big Boss: What they are is much sicker than that.
Ocelot: Well Zero doesn’t think so; EVA doesn’t either. To them, those boys are your clones: they’re you, down to the last hair.
Big Boss: And?
Ocelot: The first boys were raised… free-range, like we thought. Both of them. David has never left the States, but the other, Eli, has disappeared. Might as well call it abandoned. They’re through with him.
Big Boss: Where is he?
Ocelot: He was in England, Zero’s home ground. Apparently he traveled to Africa after that, but… he escaped from Zero’s care.
Big Boss: Just like that? Why?
Ocelot: Who knows? Maybe he found out about his birth. If he’s alive, he’d be eleven or twelve by now, old enough to think and act for himself.
Big Boss: So he might still be alive?
Ocelot:  On his own? There? I wouldn’t bet on it.
Ocelot: John. If he is alive, what’s the plan?
Big Boss: I have nothing to say to him. Treat him like a human being, just another person.

Report to Big Boss: The War Economy

Ocelot: Boss, this war business you and Miller started... Since the industry's spread out to the PF's, it may have a favorable influence on Cipher.To a ruler, an everlasting enemy is convenient. By directing the public's animosity outside his borders, he can unify their frame of mind. Guns-for-hire continue the war. Then enrich the economy with their spoils. War as a business will become a permanent tool for manipulating the public mind. A new business model. You might even call it a "war economy." Before long, Cipher, or rather the Patriots, will be drawn to this. Probably only a few decades before it takes hold,... it's not far off at all.

Report to Big Boss: Cipher's Information Control

Ocelot: Still no leads on Zero. We don't even know whether he's still alive. But the protocol he put in motion's making steady progress. Every day, SIGINT's web covers a little more of the globe. Total information control. Big Brother Zero. And it'll happen before anyone even realizes. I don't like it. You're the Big Brother of the battlefield - you've earned a firm grip on the world's military power. But soon, Zero will have nations in his. He'll erase the Cold War - all war - from peoples' minds. And with it, the world's borders. Zero's will - his influence - will be unleashed, with nothing to stem the tied. When that happens, opposition will no longer match the lines on the map. And Boss, with no borders left, what difference can we make? War will have lost any true meaning to the world. Just one more gear keeping the wheels of economy turning. Another product bearing down the capitalist conveyor belt. The future your friend Miller wanted - that's all there is in store. Perhaps it's already too late. But, human will should only be handed down and nutured by human hands. It can't be entrusted to "the system" - especially not that soulless phantom that Zero's left in his wake. No matter what happens, we'll have to fight some day - to reclaim our truth. Until next time... Big Boss.

Report to Big Boss: Zero Has Been Attacked [1]

Ocelot: Someone has successfully struck at Zero. Since Zero's using a private network, we get information, but we have no way to trace his location. That means the details are still fuzzy at this point, but apparently some new bioweapon was used. As soon as he noticed the dip in his vital signs, he had his stomach pumped and even underwent blood dialysis. But he didn't fully recover. Ironically, if Zero had kept more company, he'd have been safe. Since the incident his speech and actions have been getting more unhinged by the day. He's probably been rushed to another safehouse for intensive care, but the location is a complete mystery. That's the way he operates. He went to incredible lengths to make sure his "great escape" went unnoticed. So far, I know at least Langley and the Pentagon were involved. He had a blackout triggered in New York to disrupt the transportation and information grids, and at least two submarines were sighted off the coast. The personnel involved were working off a cover story. Naturally the White House was fed the same thing. The project is buried under a pile of dummy ops and backup plans stretching across multiple organizations. It's safe to say not one of the people involved knew what they were moving or where. All top secret. No trail, no leads. He's living up to his name, as usual. Only this time even I can't find him. Now, the only record of his location lies within the Cipher AI that was at the heart of the escape plan, and that's closed off, with its data sealed away in a secret location. Skull Face was able to put together this assassination attempt, but even he can't possibly know where Zero is now. I'll keep searching, but when you're up against "he who controls information," it's gonna be a long battle.

Report to Big Boss: Zero Has Been Attacked [2]

Ocelot: Boss, it was Anderson after all. That's right, the man who went by "Sigint" during Operation Snake Eater. Following Zero's disappearance, he's taken over command of Cipher. Well, to be precise, the AI he oversees has. The idea to have an AI act for Zero came about in '74, when the data from the Mammal Pod penetrated NORAD. Clearly, an AI couldn't be allowed to make its own decisions. So they would take away its ability to act, and instead create a specialized system in which the AI, bound by specific rules, filters the massive amounts of data it collects before passing it on to people... subtly guiding their decision-making. A system "of the people, by the people, for the people." So they began researching how to do it. DARPA apparently brought Strangelove on board to head it up, [but] she was forced out after a certain "incident." The direction of the project and any trace of her existence was scrubbed after her departure. Before Zero lost consciousness, as his condition worsened, he left instructions for Anderson. Through a cut-out, of course. Zero went out of his way to hide your location, in order to keep you safe. This meant sacrificing his own protection. It was the only way to ensure you could stand alone as your own man. And here I am, the only link between you and the world that's passing you by. I'm your last connection now; this was Zero's last request, his "will." Once you're awake, we need to discuss the best way to ensure your safety. Oh, and they've got a name for Anderson's AI project. It's called "The Patriots." It's all about ensuring that the concepts driving society appears the same in the mind of each person in that society. About maintaining the identity of the individual, and yet having that individual willingly make up part of the whole. I guess it's fitting to call that "patriotism." Creating a united world. Zero's will is already fading into a shadow of what it once was. Systems, guidelines, rules, laws... when you take a mentality and fix it in a solid shape, put it out there in the hands of people, no mentality can last forever. When the body dies the will dies with it.

Secret Recording of Paz and Zero

(Paz opens a door and walks into a room.)

Zero: Over here.

(Paz walks to the other side of the room and opens a hospital curtain. We hear the sounds of an oxygen machine and various medical monitors beeping and clicking.)

Paz: Hello?

Zero: Not there. Here.

(Paz opens a nearby curtain.)

Zero: Thank you for coming. Please.

Paz: You're...

Zero: Hm? Is it that odd? I suppose the cuffs have gotten a bit loose, although truth be told, I have been spending more time in pajamas as of late.

Paz: No... nothing.

Zero: The tie, perhaps? Not the most fashionable pattern, I admit...

Paz: No... it is... very nice.

Zero: How sweet. Will you take a little brandy?

Paz: (nervously) ah...

Zero: You're hardly underage, after all.

Paz: No thank you.

Zero: Hm. Please sit. (pours a drink) Hm. "Pacifica Ocean."

Paz: What?

Zero: Ah yes, you've already begun. Hmm.

Paz: (nervously) uh...

Zero: Not bad. A schoolgirl through and through. Even he won't suspect otherwise. Here you are. (hands over a teacup)

Paz: Thank you.

(Zero walks to a chair and sits down with some difficulty.)

Paz: I heard you were sick.

Zero: Poppycock. I just like to take a little time off work.

Paz: You?

Zero: You must feel that way, sometimes.

Paz: Well... (giggles)

Zero: Anyway, I could hardly greet my first guest from that damned bed.

Paz: I missed my chance to catch you snoring.

Zero: Now I'm twice as glad I got ready in time. Drink before it gets cold. English breakfast tea. All I have, I'm afraid. (pause) There were eight candidates before you, meaning you will be the ninth Paz Ortega Andrade.

Paz: What happened to the others?

Zero: They're in the next room. They've been taking it easy these past few months.

Paz: They...

Zero: Do you see any windows here?

Paz: No.

Zero: I've gotten used to it, this life. I am who I am, after all. And I've had my fill of cursing this bloody dunge... (his hand hits the table erratically, as if he suddenly jolted.) Excuse me. But I can't help sometimes wondering if I can't see the stars. What should I do?

Paz: Well, you... you could go outside, go up to the roof? Wait for the clouds to pass? You would have a view of Manhattan, and a pretty one, too. Or, once the wind blows and the clouds pass, you can look up and see a sky full of stars, even here.

Zero: You've had a hard time getting to where you are.

Paz: Y...Yes.

Zero: Sewer rats lead better lives. I know: extreme training, starvation, days spent without sleep, abandoned, hurt, and all but killed in every way imaginable. Some of your compatriots died, others betrayed you, left you for dead, and you did the same to them. But through it all, you survived, and you alone made it here. Just look at you. I can see everything you've been through.

Paz: Yes.

Zero: Consider this mission a reward for the mountain you've climbed.

Paz: Thank you.

Zero: Yes, well. You know what's next.

Paz: Yes.

Zero: And you are prepared?

Paz: Yes.

Zero: I believe you. That ever-so-slight tan, not the type you'd get on the West Coast. If I didn't know better I'd say you really did grow up around the equator, but it runs deeper than that. One look at you and I see a wide-eyed student yearning for peace, born and raised in Central America. I can see it all. How much preparation have you done?

Paz: A little.

Zero: You'll be perfect for this... to strike back at Snake. I'll share everything I know about him. But you mustn't forget who you're dealing with. If he were to get the better of you, well, I'd deeply regret having put you in that position. But beyond that, I'm putting my life in your hands.

Paz: You can trust me, Cipher.

Zero: Hm, none of my friends call me that. (takes teacup) Tea's gone cold. Shall I make some more?

Paz: I know we are the only ones here.

Zero: Hm?

Paz: There's no one in the other room.

Zero: And how do you know that?

Paz: You said I was your first guest.

Zero: (while pouring tea) Oh, I haven't had this much fun in quite a while. All right then.

Paz's Account: Zero's Location

Skull Face: Cipher's been in hiding ever since his "grand experiment." No one's seen him in years. All we hear are orders delivered by proxy... except you. You met with him face-to-face in order to contact Big Boss. (Paz gasps as Skull Face grabs her) Tell me where he is. Where is Cipher? Where is Zero? ...I've never known choice. Where I was born, the language I speak, I never had the freedom to choose for myself. But you, right now, are free. Do as you will.

Paz: This will save Big Boss?

Skull Face: It may.

Paz: Will you really kill Zero for me?

Skull Face: Not for you.

Paz: All right. Zero is... (tape static) Hell's Kitchen. 10th Avenue. He is undergoing treatment there.

Skull Face: Hmm. Not exactly Hyde Park.

Paz: His medical needs keep him from moving around. That is why he summoned me there. The other residents are of varying race and ages, but in reality, all forty units are Cipher personnel. It took him ten years to replace the original occupants. He's got places like this all over the world.

Skull Face: No better place to hide a needle than a stack of needles. Hmm.

Paz: Zero is on the top floor. A room with no windows and no doors. Even the elevator does not reach it. Officially, the floor does not exist. The only access is by a secret staircase one floor down, room 702.

Skull Face: Hmm. Shades of World War Two.

Paz: Nobody realizes the entire building is a setup. People go in and out all day but they're all Cipher. The building blends right in with the rest of the city. They disseminate rumors that a gang operates out of the building, that keeps most outsiders away. And most of them are there as security in case of an emergency, but even they don't know what they're really protecting. Foot traffic, goods coming in and out, phone lines, water and sewage. It is all monitored remotely by satellite and cameras inside and out. Should he need it, there's a sealed-off water conduit that can be used to escape to the Hudson River, and from there, to the sea. But from the outside it is just another building. A perfect disguise.

Skull Face: So the Major believes zero suspicion equals total security. Very bold. It's just the kind of ruse I'd expect from him. So long as no one's suspicions are aroused, you could hide there forever. On the other hand, if someone figures it out, there are dozens of ways in. And he's so paranoid about information slipping out, no one involved has the full picture. That ignorance is a weakness, the downfall of a need-to-know system. The pitfalls are clear. Circumventing them will be simplicity itself.

Paz: You hate him, don't you?

Skull Face: Hate? He never left me to die. I owe him my life. I'm bound to repay the favor any way I can. But that's not what you really want to know. What you want to know is: do I hate Big Boss? Heh heh heh. I don't hate the man. I do deserve a little more of his gratitude, but he probably has no idea who I am. So you see, I have no reason to hate him at all. I mean to have my revenge against Zero. It's not petty hatred or resentment, nothing so personal. Even the hottest lava eventually cools, becoming a mountain, and that mountain becomes the land. Scalding steam comes back down as rain, forming rivers, draining into the sea. It's then that nature's order sets in. Now, I'm merely a part of that cycle, just like Zero... and you. And Big Boss.

Paz: Don't do it!

Skull Face: That lava, that vengeance, is already set as stone. Too late to change things now.

Paz: Don't kill him!

Skull Face: The choice is not mine to make.

Paz: Please... let Big Boss live!

Skull Face: Proceed.

(Armed guards come in and unchain her, stripping her of her uniform and giving her an injection, presumably to place the bombs in her body.)

Secret Recording of Ocelot and Zero

Ocelot: It's me.
Zero: Ocelot, it's been quite a while.
Ocelot: Yeah I'll say. Took a lot longer to surface than I expected, Major.
Zero: I wasn't planning on coming back at all, but I had no choice.
Ocelot: Well, after the Caribbean...
Zero: My hunch was proven right. You wouldn't believe who was behind it.
Ocelot: Oh, I have an idea. How did you respond?
Zero: Immediate disinformation campaign. Most bought into the story, but not everyone. It was quite an incident, after all. I couldn't cover everything. But I did hide the fact that Snake survived. And that should buy us some time.
Ocelot: Where is he?
Zero: Enroute to an old foxhole of mine. A base in the British Sovereign area of Cyprus.
Ocelot: The military hospital at Dhekelia?
Zero: EVA's leading the operation.
Ocelot: EVA? Following your orders?
Zero: Funny, isn't it? That we should all reuinite like this?
Ocelot: This is an emergency. Otherwise I sure as hell-
Zero: Yes, yes, I don't expect you to bury the hatchet between us. Some things simply won't ever happen. Even I can appreciate that.
Ocelot: (sigh)
Zero: You, too, can only bear to speak with me from time to time. That's fine. But I don't want Snake to die. Surely we can come together on that. There are so few men I can turn to. And you're number one, Ocelot. Keep him hidden. Keep him safe.
Ocelot: But...
Zero: I'll stay where I am, and leave the rest to you. That's how he'd want it too.
Ocelot: Isn't it better for you to be there? To supervise...?
Zero: Where I am, where he goes - it makes no difference. All that matters is getting him the very best treatment and security. The latter being where you come in. Will he wake up? And if so, when? I have absolutely no idea. But as long as his heart is beating, he will keep fighting. So please, watch over him.
Ocelot: This location... it's safe?
Zero: No one will find him. And if they try, I will deal with them. The information must be suppressed.
Ocelot: ...Which is what you do best. Guess you're still at the top of your game, huh?
Zero: Anything but. I'm sick, Ocelot. Donald's taken over a great deal. He'll be handling this situation from here on as well. Though I wish it weren't so, this will probably be the last time you and I speak. ...So. You won't say no, will you?
Ocelot: I have no choice.
Zero: Thank you.
Ocelot: Save your thanks.
Zero: [laughs] One more thing - a proposition. I've prepared a ruse of sorts. One I imagine you'll quite like.
Ocelot: What is it?
Zero: You could say I've... made another Snake.
Ocelot: Major...
Zero: I'm not talking about the children. A mental copy. His phantom, if you like.
Ocelot: I don't understand.
Zero: You will when you get to Cyrpus. I've set the ball in motion, but the rest is in your hands. You're good at this kind of thing - the best. I need you on this.
Ocelot: If it's in his best interests.
Zero: I assure you... it is. Look after Snake. He's the toughest son of a bitch I've ever known.

Secret Recording of Miller and Zero

Miller: ...Yes?
Zero: It's me. You weren't in hospital long. I had trouble finding you.
Miller: Where is he?
Zero: Safe - but in the same state as when you last saw him. We've had our misunderstanding, you and I, but - as you've made clear - our relationship is strictly business. Therefore, I will limit this conversation to the business at hand. Please understand that I don't dislike you - not inherently.  Miller: Where's Snake?
Zero: Now, now, settle down or I'll have to hang up.
Miller: [frustrated sigh]
Zero: And then you never hear from me again. Do you understand?
Miller: [exhales]
Zero: First, about your boss. I had him moved, once he was stabilized. I'm sure it came as quite a shock to you when you woke up. You'll have to forgive me... 
Miller: I told them to stop putting me under...
Zero: Surely you understand. Specialized medical treatment in places like that can be positively nightmarish. We couldn't have left him there forever. And to be honest, I wasn't entirely comfortable leaving matters in your hands. Don't take it the wrong way. Anyone looking for him would be looking for you. He needed to be as far from you as possible. In fact, I'm still not sharing his location, even now. Problems could arise. So instead I'm giving you a point of contact. An introduction to a network of messengers who will lead you to a man. A friend to your Boss - I'm sure he's mentioned him before. He knows Snake's location. More than any man alive, I trust him with this sort of thing. Keeping secrets - or men - in the dark. He's known Snake quite a while. Ten years longer than you.
Miller: Hmph.
Zero: Kazuhira, I don't care if you don't trust me. But I require your absolute trust in him on this. Snake will be brought back into this world, however long it takes. Understood? The only reason we're having this conversation is because you still have a role to play. Which brings me to the next issue: What happens after he regains consciousness. When Snake wakes up - and he will - he'll need your help again. So when he does,I promise you'll be the first to know. The code phrase will be "V has come to." I'll then mobilize all the necessary parties. Think of it as an overture to a prologue. Until then, do what you like. Just be ready when the time comes. But you don't need me to tell you that, do you?
Miller: [sighs]
Zero: ...I know it's been hard on you, too. But I can't imagine you're willing to just walk away. Miller: What are you talking about?
Zero: Hm?
Miller: If what you're saying is true... Then this is like wrapping a rope around your own neck and throwing it around a branch. What's your play in all this?
Zero: This? This is for Snake. So that he survives after he wakes up. Nothing more. After that, I don't care what you do.
Miller: Then tell me something.
Zero: Go on.
Miller: I only joined you after I found out what you were after. To make the world one - you need Snake for that. And he's already done a hell of a lot for you.
Zero: He has.
Miller: So on some level, at least, I think you're being straight with me. Then why'd you do that to him? I get what you were trying with Paz. You wanted to get Snake any way you could. But after that. What you did... How could you do that to him?
Zero: After that wasn't me. You may not believe this, but I never intended for any of this to happen. My organization has many arms. It's... just going to take a little longer before we're all on the same page. I admit I may have been lax in my supervision. But something like that will not happen again.
Miller: ...Whatever. One day I'll know the truth. Just as soon as the Boss wakes up. And then we're coming after you. This end with you begging us to put you out of your misery.
Zero: Is that so? Fantasy can make for a powerful ally, but remember this reality Kazuhira Miller. Big Boss will wake up. And when he does... Be there for him.

Secret Recording of Skull Face and Zero

Skull Face: Major... I wondered whether you'd really call.
Zero: XO, I presume this was your doing?
Skull Face: Do you like my gift?
Zero: I've been searching a long time for this...
Skull Face: It is what you were looking for, yes?
Zero: The winged dagger of a comrade lost to the sands of Egypt... He served under The Boss back in Rayforce. I delivered this pin to her after his death. We were both so very young. From that moment on, she never let it leave her side.
Skull Face: She was still carrying it in Tselinoyarsk. How about the back?
Zero: Hmm... Mmghh...!
Skull Face: Something wrong, Major?
Zero:  Nothing, just pricked my finger...
Skull Face: The back...?
Zero: The scar is there - just as I remember it. And this white stitching on the back... From the white berets the SAS wore in the early days. Ah...!
Skull Face: Major?
Zero: "30th of December, 1941" - It's the inscription I made. The day he died.
Skull Face: Of course...
Zero: His body was never recovered. This pin badge is the closest thing he has to a gravestone. When I gave it to her, she just kept on running her finger over the inscription. "Never again" she uttered... as if reprimanding herself for his death. She pressed hard, embedding the inscription itself into her finger. You see, it's why this spot on the back looks shinier than the rest. He was. our brother-in-arms.
Skull Face: So...
Zero: Yes, it's real. Thank you. There's no doubt about it.
Skull Face: Good. Now I have no regrets.
Zero:  What do I owe you?
Skull Face: Nothing... Just want to talk for a moment.
Zero: Very well then...
Skull Face: It's about our man, Major. He's been making some moves.
Zero: Miller? Yes, I know. Rhodesia, is it?
Skull Face: Yes, and up to his old tricks again.
Zero: No matter. He'll stumble soon enough.
Skull Face: Although, he is under my jurisdiction now...
Zero: And that's what you want to talk about?
Skull Face: Not exactly.
Skull Face: You see, my being here's made me realize I can still be of use to you.
Zero: How so?
Skull Face: This country is rich with biological resources. Bacteria, nematodes, viruses... I'm sure we can find something here to bring that plan back into action...
Zero: Forget it. The cleanser project was just another one of my predecessors' daydreams.
Skull Face: And the vocal cord parasites...?
Zero: Were an excellent test case for reverse evolution - nothing more. What matters now is the genetics technology behind that work. With genetics, the clumsiness in targeting an entire race isn't an issue. We can target specific individuals. No need to breed multiple generations of parasite just to get results.
Skull Face: But I...
Zero: Don't be quaint, XO. Once the Cold War is over, our enemies won't be so clearly-defined. Using HUMINT alone won't be enough. An electronic network will span the globe, and our enemies will blend right into it.
Skull Face: You may be right. But will people really settle for an enemy they can't see? Men want to feel righteous... Need to see the evil in the enemy they fear. Without it, they'll turn their aggressions inward, find an enemy inside - you know this is true.
Zero: I see what you're saying. Just as those robbed of their parasites develop allergies and auto-immune diseases, a man robbed of his enemy develops self-destructive tendencies. And I know all the symptoms: Ethnic conflict, religious strife, terrorism... And with asymmetrical conflict, deterrence is a joke. That's why we must depend on information control. People need an appropriate context for their lives. A context that's stimulating, without being destructive. That balance is the basis of equilibrium.
Skull Face: You mean to say people will blindly accept your context, without developing any "allergies?"
Zero: If we're to unite the world, literacy must be suppressed. To suppress the "information immune system," to borrow your metaphor.
Skull Face: Immunity to information... But, to ensure there's no allergic reaction, while the immune system fights off parasites and pathogens...
Zero: It's done, XO. This world will become one.I have found the way. The world that The Boss envisioned will finally become a reality. Race, tribal affiliations, national borders, even our faces will be irrelevant. The nature of communication itself will change, and it will make mankind whole again.
Skull Face: Some things can't be undone. My face was taken from me. There's no taking that back.
Zero: A face means nothing when one soul is able to communicate directly with another.
Skull Face: I have no intention of hiding behind your technological veil, Major. I wear my broken visage - this skull, in the open, so that I may never forget what I've lost...
Zero: You...? What are you...?
Skull Face: The chain of retaliation is what will truly bind this world together as one!
Zero: Rrgh...
Skull Face: Major?
Zero: You son of a... the pin... You...
Skull Face: Yes, the pin. It's too late. They can't extract it. You see, Major, some things can't be undone.
Zero: How did you find me?  The girl... You made her talk...?
Skull Face: I'm sorry I couldn't visit - or thank you in person - but it has been lovely chatting. And now that I know you're no longer interested in the garden... It's time for you to step aside.
Zero: Rrrgh...
Skull Face: You're a busy man - lots to do. So I've left you... a little time.
Zero: Go to hell! How dare you... You planned this all along... Had your own agenda... All these years...
Skull Face: Now you see. The world can never truly become one.
Zero: But The Boss... I've been...
Skull Face: You've been wrong!
Zero: You're no different... Just like him... None of you understand the world she saw.
Skull Face: I would say the same to you, Major.
Zero: Just like that, you steal it all away. Everything.
Skull Face: The Boss said the same thing. Only... I understood what she meant. Major... I'll handle the rest. Oh, and one more thing. That pin badge... It was a fake.
Zero: Nghhh...
Skull Face: I held on to the real one. I'll take good care of it... ...and continue The Boss's work.
Zero: Gi... Giv... Jack...

Secret Recording of Zero Visiting Snake

Zero: Go.

Doctor: I almost thought you wouldn't come.

Zero: Well, you're supposed to visit hospital before you die.

Doctor: But... how did you get here?

Zero: My friends at the SAS know how to keep a secret. The trip to the airport was a little dramatic, but the rest was easy. Still, I've had smoother rides. Oh look. Scolded myself with my tea... I won't be staying long.

Doctor: I understand.

Zero: Which one is he?

Doctor: On the right.

Zero: And the left?

Doctor: We... did just as you instructed.

Zero: Has either of them woken?

Doctor: Neither of them, no.

Zero: Not once?

Doctor: Not in two years. Their weekly EEGs show stable activity levels. There's been practically no change.

Zero: Jack. Jack. It's me. You look fit to run a country mile.

Doctor: Every four hours we move all of their muscles - Subject them to load.They're stable, but eventually...

Zero: Yes, of course.

Doctor: We've done everything we can to ensure they're ready to move - should they wake up.Still, it's been a pretty long time...

Zero: (hm)

Doctor: How long will they be here?

Zero: Indefinitely. It's too dangerous to move them. And so far, no one knows that they're here.

Doctor: I see.

Zero: I am most grateful to you. And I need you to keep it up.

Doctor: We'll do everything we can.

Zero: Can you give us a moment?

Doctor: Of course.

Zero: Jack, can you hear me? Nice place, isn't it? I went to a lot of trouble bringing you here. Here, where no one will find you. Still, the Ocelot's on guard duty - just in case. Maybe knowing that will help you sleep better. I had no intention of coming, but... This.... could be my last chance. If you'd just come to see me first... Do you remember the last time I visited you in hospital? Our first mission together. After The Boss threw you in that river - broke your arm. Ah, the good old days... I never told you this, but... I had another team at my disposal, back then. With a very special man leading it. Maybe he didn't like the arrangement. In any case, this man, he.... seems to have done something to me. Which is why... I'm quite sick myself - up here. There's nothing they can do. I always was the forgetful type, as you know. I'm all right for now, but they say it's a one-way street. If you don't wake up soon, I won't remember you when you do. I don't mind about myself. But what he did to you, I can never forgive. I've sent him to Africa. And I doubt he's coming back. Jack, once your little holiday here is over... Well, who knows when that will be? But anyway...I probably won't be around. I'll be somewhere even you can't find me. A tombstone chiseled into the code of a machine. That is all I'll leave to mark my existence. Wake up soon, old friend. (hm) Time is running short...

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