- 1 Beyond by Jonathan Goff
- 2 Pariah by B. K. Evenson
- 3 Stomping on the Heels of a Fuss by Eric Raab
- 4 Midnight in the Heart of Midlothian by Frank O'Connor
- 5 Dirt by Tobias Buckell
- 6 Acheron 7 by Jonathan Goff
- 7 Headhunters by Jonathan Goff
- 8 Blunt Instruments by Fred Van Lente
- 9 Mona Lisa by Tessa Kum & Jeff VanderMeer
- 10 Icon by Jonathan Goff
- 11 Palace Hotel by Robert McLees
- 12 Human Weakness by Karen Traviss
- 13 Connectivity by Jonathan Goff
- 14 The Impossible Life and the Possible Death of Preston J. Cole by Eric Nylund
- 15 The Return by Kevin Grace
- 16 From the Office of Dr. William Arthur Iqbal
- 17 Soma the Painter
- 18 Wages of Sin
Beyond by Jonathan Goff
Beyond is a poem that describes an individual's opinion on the Halo rings and the implications of their existence.
Pariah by B. K. Evenson
Pariah tells the story of Soren-066, a Spartan who was one of a dozen unfortunate candidates who washed out of the program due to complications arising from the biological enhancements, and the struggles he faced afterwards.
Stomping on the Heels of a Fuss by Eric Raab
Stomping on the Heels of a Fuss tells the story of an ONI agent named Connor Brien, who is sent to investigate Brutes on Beta Gabriel. Brien eventually gets captured by Hammadus while watching the Brutes from a tree and is thrown together with the rest of the human survivors. The human prisoners are used as amusement and food. The ONI agent conspires with a spiritual guru, Dasc Gevadim, to escape. While the pack's unity slowly breaks down, the prisoners make a distraction, which gives Brien and Dasc a chance to escape. The ONI agent and the spiritual guru eventually escape from the Brutes, but Brien is killed by Dasc before the help can arrive.
Midnight in the Heart of Midlothian by Frank O'Connor
Midnight in the Heart of Midlothian tells the story of an ODST who is put under for a surgery to remove a tumor before participating in his next mission. When the ODST awakens, he finds that he is the only human left alive on the UNSC The Heart of Midlothian after a Covenant Special Operations team has boarded and taken over the ship. Living on borrowed time, the ODST has to stop the Covenant from capturing the shipboard AI and learning the location of Earth.
Dirt by Tobias Buckell
Dirt begins with the ODST Rookie, later to be revealed in ODST. He is attempting to save an ODST named Gage from certain death, then Dirt follows a Harvest militiaman, named Gage, from his time before the Human-Covenant War as he joins first the CMA, and then the UNSC with his two friends Eric and Felicia. After joining the ODSTs, the Covenant destroy Harvest, leaving him no home to go back to. After nearly thirty years of war, he is reunited with a few of his old friends from his CMA days, but is presented with a moral crisis that eventually leads to his heroic death.
Acheron 7 by Jonathan Goff
Headhunters by Jonathan Goff
Headhunters follows the story of a two-man SPARTAN-III team, sent deep into Covenant territory to deal serious damage behind enemy lines.
Blunt Instruments by Fred Van Lente
Blunt Instruments follows SPARTAN-II Black Team which is given the task to disable a Covenant energy supply station. During the course of the operation, Black Team made an uneasy alliance with the Yanme'e, who tricked them into organizing their escape.
Mona Lisa by Tessa Kum & Jeff VanderMeer
The Mona Lisa follows the crew of the UNSC Red Horse as they are sent to investigate the fate of the Mona Lisa, which has mysteriously come to rest near the destroyed Installation 04. After boarding the ship, a team of Marines discovers that the ship has been overrun by the Flood, making unexpected and uneasy alliances, and beginning a desperate struggle for survival against the parasite.
Icon by Jonathan Goff
Icon describes the lives of John-117, the SPARTAN-IIs and SPARTAN-IIIs, and the legacy they left.
Palace Hotel by Robert McLees
Palace Hotel follows John-117's movements from getting on the other side of the bridge in the Halo 2 level "Metropolis" to right before he boards the Scarab. It also discusses Master Chief's discovery of a childhood friend.
Human Weakness by Karen Traviss
Human Weakness tells what happened at the end of Halo 2, with Cortana in the clutches of the Gravemind. The Gravemind manages to break Cortana by introducing the fallacies of her existence and the purpose of her service, but through it all he cannot get her to give up one last secret.
Connectivity by Jonathan Goff
Connectivity is a poem that describes the connection between Cortana and John-117.
The Impossible Life and the Possible Death of Preston J. Cole by Eric Nylund
The Impossible Life and the Possible Death of Preston J. Cole is a series of email transcripts from Codename: SURGEON to Codename: USUAL SUSPECTS, and details in length the life and times of UNSC military leader Preston Cole, including his possible death or survival during his famed last stand.
The Return by Kevin Grace
The Return follows a Sangheili Shipmaster as he travels back to the human colony world Kholo, which he had led the destruction of years earlier, to reflect on his actions and look for guidance in the wake of the Great Schism. It is set after the events of Halo 3.
From the Office of Dr. William Arthur Iqbal
From the Office of Dr. William Arthur Iqbal is an email transcript from Dr. William Arthur Iqbal to his colleagues, and details the progress of their research on the Forerunner structure in Kenya.
Soma the Painter
Soma the Painter is a short story about Soma, a Forerunner from the planet Seaward, as she watches the Flood return to the Milky Way. This short story is only present in Volume I of the two volume version of the book.
Wages of Sin
Wages of Sin is a short story narrated by the Minister of Discovery as the Flood slowly consumes High Charity. He reflects on his own wrongdoings and also confesses that he released the Flood. This short story is only present in Volume II of the two volume version of the book.