Name: Miguel Herrera
Gender: Son of Toledo Nuevo, y Domingo Herrera, thank you very much.
Appearance: Standing at 6'9 and weighing in at a lean 300 pounds (you know, for a Spartan), Miguel is naturally somewhere close to a foot taller than he was as a Bullfrog, but keeps mostly the same proportions of "athletic and balanced", if on the trimmer side of the equation. To any that knew him prior to his date with ORCHID, this means exactly squat, as the man now looms over them and feels like he's made of stone. But the more things change, the more they stay the same— he still has the same earthy eyes, strong onyx brows, and dashing, daring smile. His features are charmingly robust, accompanied by a close-cropped head of black hair and a serendipitous mustache that are mindful to not get terribly out of hand, though he half-jokingly contends that he should be allowed a "properly suave mane". Can tone his Exoplanetary Spaniard accent down on a mission. Happily refuses to everywhere else. His posture is quite lax for a Spartan, even considering he's a IV, and he'll quite readily chat and joke as though he were still a soldier of more mortal ken. Attributes the small, linear scars on each cheekbone to a near-miss involving a Sangheili energy sword, but the jury's out on whether or not it's as true as the "shaving with one's own combat knife" story.
Personality: That the stereotype of combat soldiers being hardcases has to an extent still survived into the 26th Century is no problem of Herrera's. Like many an ODST among those they recognize as "their kin", he is lighthearted, goofy, and seemingly carefree in interpersonal interactions, a gracious and welcoming host in his quarters and openly approachable outside of them. His lax affectations serve to disguise what they stem from in the first place— a full confidence in his own skill. Miguel may have that distinctly Hispanic flair for bombast, yes, but he has trained long and hard for this life of warfare, and it shows in his constant and consistent readiness for anything. When one rarely sleeps, they tend to find the time to keep themselves sharp everywhere else. Given his history within the UNSC prior to becoming a supersoldier, it is safe enough to say that he has no lack for bravery. Something of a rogueish streak within him rears its head in battle, especially in the face of Covenant forces— underhanded tactics and fighting with some panache are both perfectly acceptable psychological warfare to him, even if military discipline and a "strict code of honor" are sources of pride. Notably hides his darker emotions behind his usual veil of amiability and good humor.
Background: The son of a UNSC factory worker in the city of New Toledo, Miguel was born into a mild spring on September 29th, 2528, on the world of Alluvion. The childhood he enjoyed there was, by all accounts, rather normal— for a Border World with the spectre of War looming over it. It was certainly no coincidence that his father Domingo had a habit of "bringing his work home with him", per se, teaching his young son about the firearms he produced quite far ahead of schedule. But, one must remember, a little rough-and-tumble is to be expected on the colonial frontier. Childhood scuffles before dinner. Adventuring just a bit too high up the many trees and getting yourself stuck. Receiving earfuls from your mother for breaking something when trying to "hammer at the forge" like your father, while he tries to stay stern and angry atop bubbling mirth. Kid Stuff, really. As time went on, the rambunctious child, then preteen, began to seriously wonder where his path in life would lead. He wasn't half the man his father was, an opinion he knew he would always hold, but that pride he held in knowing his family was fighting the good fight, forging weapons to beat back their foes lead to a conflict of desires within the boy. Would he follow in the factory footsteps? Would he take his boundless energy into the front lines? For all he loved his father, he could not say while still so young.
And then 2542 happened, and the Covenant made the choice for him forever. New Toledo and its factories, being key strategic assets to the UNSC, were swiftly attacked by the Fleet of Particular Justice in the initial assault against the major population centers and spaceports. Given as the initial probes the year prior had stirred up a full military response by the UNSC, he had enough time to get out alive— but only barely, on one of the last evacuation vessels to retreat behind allied lines before the support fleet arrived and began to glass the surface of the planet, many millions of lives still succumbing to flames. One such was Domingo Herrera, having taken a solemn, unanimous vow alongside his foreman and fellow floor workers to produce supplies around the clock for the troops securing the escapes of their loved ones. Toledo Nuevo was beaten, yes, but they would never be broken.
Now robbed of the man he worshiped as a hero, the home he loved dearly, and the great majority of his family, Miguel found a gaping wound rent into his heart by fire... and with fire it filled again. It was a shame he were not just a few years younger— he would have made for a very good III. The young man, only 14, turned all of his precocious energy towards the fight with singular focus, that which he had so lacked in his life before. Even within the confines of the ship, before he relocated, he began to train his body— racing down its halls until he dropped. For the next 4 years, this continued without pause, for when a man of Alluvion takes a vow, only an act of God could stop him from seeing it through. Running, calisthenics, even taking up classes with a fencing instructor— all were towards a singular goal. September 29th, 2546 saw the enlistment of one very spirited marine. After psychological screening and, as he tells it, answering the question of "How do you feel about working with open flame?" with "Better than the aliens will.", he graduated boot and was shunted straight into a Hellbringers unit, where he defied the harrowing odds of survival for a full year. At the earnest nudging of one of his COs, he took a stab at ODST. After a year's work carrying a fuel tank on your back and attacking entrenched positions with streams of aerosolized rage, orbital drops didn't seem terribly awful by comparison, you know? The training was otherworldly, asking everything even a man like him had, but he refused to be Returned To Unit. Domingo Herrera did not raise, nor die to save the life of, a quitter.
The overseers of the program took one look at Miguel and slotted him into an additional training regimen, noting his bravery: Bound School. Colloquially, this made him a "tadpole", as it set his future to be within the "Bullfrogs", or ODST Air Assault Unit. He, of course, had no issue with the idea of a volatile backpack. For another two months he was drilled on AA tactics and the usage of the Series 8 Jetpack system in urban warfare, and then the PFC was off to the races. Serving under an even-handed officer, he was allowed just enough wiggle room for a few peculiarities to slip through in combat, but luckily seemed to understand when he was being reined in. His bravado did not supersede his fellowship with the rest of the fireteam, and he could hang tough with any of them in any situation. His drops took him to vistas such as the Siege of New Alexandria, Manassas, even a stint on Earth, in his ancestral home.
Following war's end, Miguel was one of the many that were more than happy to still take the fight to remnant forces that defied the armistice, blood still running hot at the notion. He continued to serve as a Bullfrog, skirmishing with belligerent forces until Spartan Ops approached him with the prospect of a three-week paid vacation on Mars. Ever the daredevil, the sales pitch hadn't even finished before he'd agreed.
Equipment: Cyclops Armor and an Air Assault helmet make for a sharp ensemble in urban camouflage. Magnum comes standard, as does the combat knife. Everything else... the phrase "Marines make due" has survived for well over 500 years for a reason. Given his experience in the role of Air Assault Jump-Jetting, it's a no-brainer that he'll be wearing the Series 8 if the need arises. He's got the training. The same can be said for the M7057 flamethrower, but these situations tend to be less common than the former.
Skills: Fearless, deft, and startlingly comfortable around most things involving flame, Miguel's main deviations from the general well-rounded Spartan wheelhouse find themselves mainly in his distinct specialization in the realm of Air Assault. A former "Bullfrog", or member of the ODST's Special Purpose Forces Air Assault unit in standard nomenclature, he specializes in the verticality and mobility necessary for urban combat, bounding from rooftop to rooftop via jetpack to secure and hold key firing positions. This naturally necessitated a comfort with CQB tactics as well— no sense in letting the floor below your objective go unattended when a group of Jackals could be nested within. Given that his military career began with a stint in the pyrotechnics division (dubbing themselves the "Hellbringers"), he's quite familiar with the M7057 weapon platform and acting in a small squad role. If you need a man to engage entrenched infantry or quickly take a point over difficult terrain and do either with a maximal score on style, look no further. As for his downtime hobbies, he quite enjoys the historical fencing of his ancestral homeland as well as cooking, finding the both of them therapeutic, even meditative.
Flaws: Has an overdeveloped sense of vengeance. The torching of New Toledo left many scars on its proudest son, and the largest of which was the hole in his heart shaped like his father that he wished to fill with the blood and ashes of the monolithic enemy that took him away. While the peace agreement has forced him, like anyone, to mellow internally, not even his affable air can fully hide his distrust for the races that were just yesterday the bitterest of foes. He's an insomniac, barely skirting the UNSC-mandated 150 minutes of sleep per 48 hour cycle— and his showmanship streak likely doesn't stem from purely clinical idea of "psychological warfare" as he claims. Perhaps seeing demons wreathed in flame while dreaming left him with a few ideas on how to even the score, but we all know the saying of what happens to those who play with fire.