Gladys is often shown to be a highly professional and stern captain of the Minerva, often commanding the respect of its crew inside and outside the work station. She is an interesting mix between both Murrue Ramius and Natarle Badgiruel, being aware and close to the troops emotionally, and occasionally defying orders based on her own integrity, yet still being compelled to follow her duties as captain and commander.
Although she shares Ramius's sentiments of fighting for those they believe in, she suffers from the same pitfall as Natarle, where she is unable to bring herself to completely oppose her superiors until it is too late, arguably also because of her previous relationship with Gilbert Durandal.
While a good tactician, she sometimes has a hard time asserting her authority with some of her mobile suit pilots. This is made worse when two of them are also appointed into FAITH. Even though her crew is loyal to her, Gladys's own loyalties sometimes seem to waver. She clearly disagrees with many decisions handed down to her by the top brass in ZAFT and the PLANT Supreme Council, but despite personal misgivings, she always follows her orders. Her inability to do what sometimes she believes is right makes her vulnerable to manipulation.
Skills & Abilities
She has shown good instinctive battle tactics and often orders the support ZAKU units to stay close to the ship, limiting the amount of damage done to the ship. However her strategic prowess is somewhat lacking, sometimes relying on others to organize battle plans. Captain Gladys does not use the resources of the Minerva recklessly or without provocation. She has been seen to use the Minerva's "Tannhäuser" positron beam cannon normally as a last resort. Her strengths eventually earn her an appointment into FAITH.
It was previously noted that Gladys had a small relationship with the young Gilbert Durandal when he was still just a geneticist. Gladys eventually decided to break-up with Gilbert for another man, eventually starting a family with the birth of her son William. It is not indicated, however, if William was born before or after Gladys's entry into the military.
Captaining the Minerva and Bogey One
Years after, Talia Gladys becomes captain of the newly-commissioned Minerva. The ship was forced into launching ahead of schedule due to the thefts of the ZGMF-X88S Gaia Gundam, ZGMF-X24S Chaos Gundam, and ZGMF-X31S Abyss Gundam. With Shinn Asuka and his ZGMF-X56S Impulse Gundam overextending themselves and running low on power, the Minerva quickly dispatched to rescue him from the mothership of the stolen suits as well as to provide escort and protection for Gilbert Durandal.
While investigating the whereabouts of the stolen units, Gladys and the Minerva are ambushed near a set of ruins and immediately dispatch Shinn, Lunamaria Hawke and two GuAIZ under Shawn and Dale to assist them. Unfortunately, the party is ambushed by the stolen units, and the latter pair are killed almost immediately. Following this, the Minerva is ambushed from behind by the hidden mothership, dubbed as "Bogey One".
Because of their positioning, Gladys orders for the ship to take cover at a nearby asteroid, but Bogey One proceeds to attack the asteroid, intending to bury the Minerva underneath. Gladys then has Rey Za Burrel sent out to protect them while they attempt to demolish the surrounding asteroid chunks. When the accompanying Alex Dino asks if there are any other mobile suits, Gladys responds that they have no more pilots.
Dino later suggests for the Minerva to simultaneously use its remaining thrusters while firing all its weapons to create an explosion; using the force of the explosion and the power of the thrusters to plow through the debris. Gladys follows these instructions and successfully shifts the tide of the battle against Bogey One.
When it is revealed that Junius Seven was now heading towards Earth, Gladys gives Alex, now exposed as Athrun Zala, permission to use the unmanned ZAKU Warrior in the ship to help with the former colony's demolition. Upon arrival, she is surprised to hear that Yzak Jule's squad was now under attack from both radical terrorists following the late Patrick Zala and Bogey One. Throughout the battle, Gladys attempts to establish communication with Bogey One to clarify that ZAFT was not in league with the terrorists but is unable to do so.
After much fighting, ZAFT's forces succeed in splitting the colony in half. As there were still sizable chunks left, Gladys has Chairman Durandal depart from the Minerva and recalls the remaining units outside in order to fire at the remaining debris during their descent to Earth. Despite both Athrun and Shinn not returning, Gladys is forced to close the Minerva's bridge to prepare it for atmospheric descent. To her relief, both Athrun and Shinn are found to be safe, albeit the former's unit being rendered unusable.
Second Alliance-PLANT War
Upon landing on Earth, the Minerva proceeds to Orb for both repairs and to return both Cagalli Yula Athha and Athrun back to the country. Gladys would later become acquainted with Murrue Ramius, the head foreman in charge of the Minerva's repairs. The two later lengthy discussion over one's duty and sometimes having the only option as a soldier of fighting for those they believe in.
Amidst their stay, however, the Atlantic Federation would declare war on ZAFT, believing them to be part of the terrorist group that dropped Junius Seven and refusing to listen to Durandal's claims of innocence. Shortly after, Gladys receives a secret message from Andrew Waltfeld, warning them of the decision of Orb's politicians to join the Alliance, against Cagalli's wishes.
Though suspicious, Gladys makes preparations for leaving. Her fears of Orb's new allegiance is later confirmed by Cagalli, who also warns for Gladys to escape immediately. Before disembarking, Gladys shows no malice towards Cagalli, thanking her for the warning and for her sincerity in peace. The Minerva's escape is soon cut off by a detachment of Alliance forces, led by its new Mobile Armor. Gladys is astonished when the machine is able to completely block the Minerva's Tannhäuser. Thanks to Shinn's intervention, however, the Mobile Armor is quickly dispatched alongside the accompanying fleet sent to pursue them.
While still on-the-run, Gladys is rejoined by Athrun, having re-enlisted with ZAFT. Aside from asking for her permission to remain onboard with the new ZGMF-X23S Saviour Gundam, Athrun also passes a FAITH badge meant for her from Chairman Durandal.
The Minerva would once again skirmish with the stolen units of Armory One at the Indian Ocean before being tasked with aiding separatist insurgents in Gulnahan Ravine. Due to the impregnable Lohengrin Gate, Athrun has Gladys and the rest of the Minerva bait the main Alliance forces at the front of the gate while Shinn is tasked with sneaking through the rear and dismantling the Lohengrin protecting the Alliance forces.
After their success, the Minerva's crew is soon joined by Heine Westenfluss and his ZGMF-2000 GOUF Ignited. For their repeated meddling in the Alliance's territories, the Minerva is met with the joint Orb-Alliance fleet at Darndelles, where their battle is interrupted by the sudden arrival of the Archangel and the Freedom. After the refusal of Orb's forces to listen to Cagalli's pleas to stand down, the Freedom and Archangel begin attacking all sides, eventually forcing the battle to halt when units on both parties were damaged. During the chaos, Heine was also killed in action, which the pilots blame on the third party forces. The Minerva's Tannhaüser was also attacked by the Freedom and rendered unusable, stripping the ship of its most powerful weapon.
While making a short stop on Lodonia, Shinn and Rey return from a reconnaissance trip to report of a small laboratory in the area, though Rey had suffered convulsions and had to be returned by Shinn.
When Gladys, Arthur, Shinn and Athrun investigate the abandoned facility, they are horrified to learn that it was part of the Alliance's Biological CPU program, which involved seizing children in their youth and forcing them to undergo a kill-or-be-killed program to make them combat-ready that also included drugging and torturing them. After this gruesome discovery, the group is attacked by the lone Gaia, which is disabled by both Shinn and Athrun.
To everyone's surprise, Shinn defies military law and immediately takes the Gaia's injured pilot to the Minerva's medical bay for treatment. Shinn later clarifies that he met the pilot during their stay in Orb and believed she was simply just a victim of war. To everyone's astonishment, the girl is found to have unhealthy amounts of chemicals within her body, making her one of the Biological CPUs that came from the abandoned laboratory in Lodonia.
Nonetheless, a full report is made to Chairman Durandal as Gladys captains the Minerva's journey to western Eurasia. In the following battle at Crete, both the Archangel and Freedom interfere once again in the Minerva's battle against the Orb-Alliance fleet. This time, however, Lunamaria is seriously wounded from an enemy bombardment, while her ZAKU, alongside Rey's unit and Athrun's Saviour are all damaged beyond repair. After the battle, Shinn breaks military law again and returns Stella to the Alliance forces. As he was an accomplice of the escape, Gladys questions Rey on why he would help Shinn and her suspicions of Shinn's loyalty. In response, Rey replies that though they have no means of pursuing him, Shinn's only objective was Stella's safety, and he assures her that Shinn will return.
True to Rey's words, Shinn does return and is immediately imprisoned with Rey in the ship's lower deck. Though Durandal received this report of Shinn and Rey's actions, he opted to pardon them on account of their past service. News soon arrives to the repaired Minerva of a new Alliance machine on a rampage in Berlin, leading to Gladys's new course for the city.
There, she is startled to find a massive new Mobile Suit already battling the Freedom and Archangel with most of the city already reduced to rubble. Gladys soon sends Shinn out and engages with Destroy. Ultimately, Destroy is finally put to a stop when the Freedom pierces its beam cannons before it can fire.
Battles Against the Archangel and Logos
Following Destroy's defeat, Chairman Durandal broadcasts a worldwide program exposing the extremist anti-coordinator terrorist organization, Logos, including identifying its leaders and using footage of the battle against Destroy as propaganda against them.
Before they can attack their cornered foe, however, ZAFT's higher command deems the Archangel to be a threat due to its constant appearances during battle and orders for them to be dealt with before moving on to Logos. The mission, dubbed "Operation: Angel Down", commenced when the Archangel was caught during its attempt to return to Orb, where it was attacked heavily by ZAFT's BuCUEs and BABIs, but thanks to its suppressive fire and the Freedom, the ship is able to escape this first wave relatively safe.
Gladys and the Minerva, however, soon enter the field, and, against orders, Gladys sends a message to the Archangel, demanding surrender and guaranteeing their safety should they comply. To the surprise of Arthur, and to Gladys's suspicions, the captain of the Archangel is revealed to be Ramius, who politely rejects the offer. With little alternative, Shinn is sent out to fight the Freedom while the Minerva continues the pursuit for the Archangel.
Aware that they will not be able to chase the ship once it submerges, Gladys orders Tannhäuser to be fired. This attack hits the Archangel's main wing as it submerges, while Shinn is victorious in his dogfight against the Freedom and proceeds to destroy the fabled unit. Despite scoring a major victory that wasn't achieved in the previous war, Gladys did not celebrate, instead expressing dissatisfaction at the order to attack them.
After the Freedom's destruction and the Archangel's defeat, Gladys and the rest of the Minerva's crew stop at Gibraltar to plan the upcoming battle against Logos at Heaven's Base secretly labelled "Operation: Ragnarök. The meeting soon erupts in uproar when Athrun Zala and Meyrin Hawke are outed as traitors after they steal one of the base's GOUFs and flee. To her frustration, Gilbert authorizes both Rey and Shinn to shoot them down without hearing them out. To Gladys's anger and disbelief, they eventually complete the task, leaving her and most of the Minerva's crew shaken upon the revelation.
Nonetheless, they dutifully continue on with the attack on Heaven's Base. Despite losing all their descent troops and most of the defecting Alliance fleet to the base's surprise attack, the Minerva's pilots single-handedly turn the tide, with Shinn destroying four out of the five Destroys gathered, and the last falling to both Rey and Lunamaria.
Out of all of Logos's leaders, however, it is revealed that Lord Djibril was the only one that evaded capture and has now escaped to Orb, causing Durandal to order a full invasion of the country. The Minerva enters the battle late, however, but arrives at a decisive time, when the Orb forces are reinvigorated by Cagalli's reappearance in her ORB-01 Akatsuki Gundam. As she enters the battlefield, it is soon revealed that the Archangel had faked its demise and was now ready to face the Minerva once again. Additionally, Shinn would end up having another dogfight with the repaired Freedom, eventually suffering from power shortage as it drags on.
Eventually, the Archangel once again escapes the Minerva's wrath by fleeing underwater, while Shinn is recalled to refuel his unit. During this time, Shinn and Rey are sent out to eliminate the Freedom, but their foe is soon reinforced by the sudden arrival of Athrun and his Justice. Concurrently, a shuttle suddenly departs from Orb's Seiran shelter, leading Gladys to theorize that its passenger was Djibril. Although Lunamaria is sent, she is unable to shoot the shuttle, and ZAFT's flagship, St. Helens, was also destroyed by the Archangel.
Having lost both the battle and their purpose to remain in Orb, Gladys takes control of the remaining ZAFT forces and orders a full withdrawal. She later sends a report of the battle to Chairman Durandal, who acknowledges and thanks her for the prudent decision to retreat. She later watches Cagalli's broadcast denouncing Durandal's hostile methods before it is interrupted by Lacus Clyne, who calls out Orb as a nation for protecting a man as wicked as Djibril. To everyone's shock, a second Lacus appears, claiming to be the true one. This Lacus, however, calls out Durandal's shady decisions and various opportunistic moves for his ulterior motives. At the same time, she expresses disdain for Lord Djibril and reiterates Orb's original stance for peace and neutrality in the matter.
Final Battles and Death
With Orb temporarily out of the picture, ZAFT now returns its focus on Djibril, who has now fled to the moon. The Jule team's later finds large devices being protected by the Alliance's forces. These devices turn out to be the beam reflecting stations for the superweapon, Requiem, which fires at the PLANTs and successfully destroys Januarius 1 - 4 and December 7 and 8. Due to this massive loss, the Minerva returns to space and is immediately tasked with attacking Requiem while the Jule team is busy attacking the other relay stations.
To further hide their movements, Gladys has the Minerva, Rey and Shinn engage the main defenders of Requiem, leaving Lunamaria to infiltrate the Alliance's base and destroy Requiem's control center. The plan succeeds with Djibril being killed and Requiem being seized. Thanks to the destruction of Logos, Durandal is finally able to unveil the "Destiny Plan", his solution to ending conflicts by pinpointing a person's optimal path in life based on their talents and genetics and planning their future following this path.
While many voice their support, many other independent factions such as Orb, the Kingdom of Scandinavia and the Atlantic Federation all voice their separate complaints on the matter, arguing that it would also strip a person of their freedom. In response, Durandal uses the newly-acquired Requiem to attack the Federation's lunar base, killing its president, Joseph Copeland. Though many in the Minerva wonder how Requiem could be fired, Gladys angrily points out that the ones who used the weapon were obviously the ZAFT forces.
Despite her outrage with Durandal's decision to use Requiem, she continues to support him when Orb scrambles its space fleet, alongside any other dissident force such as Alliance survivors or ZAFT defectors to resist Chairman Durandal's plans and to destroy Requiem and its relay stations. During the battle, Gladys faces off against Ramius once again in the defense of the relay stations.
Gladys is eventually able to use Tannhäuser on the Archangel while it is front of the Eternal, keeping Ramius from moving for fear of the shot hitting the Eternal instead. To Gladys's surprise, Neo Raonoke proceeds to intercept the attack with the Akatsuki, negating the attack with the unit's resistance against beam-based attacks, and destroying the Minerva's positron cannon.
As the battle drags on, the opposing forces are finally able to destroy one of Requiem's relay stations, however, the Mobile Space Fortress Messiah appears and fires Neo-GENESIS, successfully destroying a sizable chunk of the enemy fleet.
The Minerva's role soon shifts from defending the relay stations, to engaging both the Archangel and the Eternal and stalling until Requiem and Neo-GENESIS can be used again. Because of this, both Athrun and Archangel break away from their current engagement to prioritize attacking Requiem directly, leading to Gladys and Shinn tailing them.
Ultimately, the Minerva is defeated after its main weapons are rendered unusable by the Archangel followed by the destruction of its engines at the hands of the Infinite Justice's Fatum-01. The ship soon crashes on the moon and is effectively sunk. While Gladys is organizing the remaining crew members, however, Durandal fires Neo-GENESIS for the second time, but this time catching many ZAFT soldiers in its line of fire.
Outraged by Durandal's actions and finally seeing the folly of following him thus far, Gladys proceeds to have the Minerva's crew evacuate from the ship, as well as passing down command of its members to Arthur, thanking him for his help throughout the war.
Resolving to kill Gilbert herself, Gladys takes a separate life shuttle from the others and makes her way for the sinking Messiah after it is heavily damaged by the Eternal and the Strike Freedom. She eventually reaches the fortress's command center, where she already finds Gilbert and Kira Yamato in a stand-off and in a debate between their thoughts for the future. As she draws her gun to fire, however, Durandal is shot by Rey, having been swayed by Kira's idea of a future by their own choice and hand. In the end, she decides to die with Durandal and Rey in the space fortress Messiah. As her last request, she asks Kira Yamato and Athrun Zala to tell Murrue Ramius that she wishes the captain to meet her son some day. (In the original version, Athrun is not present and only Kira receives the request)
In her last moments, she thanks Rey for his service throughout the war and embraces him before they perish together.
In the Omake Quarters Drama CD, Gladys's remaining personal belongings are handed over to her son William by Arthur Trine. Although William remains unhappy with his mother's decision to leave him behind in favor of joining her former lover, Arthur pushes him to think closer to her virtues and defends the late Gladys based on her past leadership.
Talia Gladys was Gilbert Durandal's lover prior to the events of Gundam SEED Destiny, when he wasn't the Chairman of the PLANTs. However, she chose to break this relationship for unclear reasons; it is implied however she wanted a child, which was stated to be unlikely for most Coordinators, who have very low fertility. For this reason, the PLANTs arranged marriage between people able to have children together.