Hal has been good friends with Johnny Weston before the Great War. They did jobs together and were partners. Hal and Johnny went their own ways when Johnny joined Meg Groberg's crew; Hal thought him and Johnny would be better off on their own, but Johnny decided to stay with Meg. Hal did not approve of Johnny's relationship with Meg, and Johnny posits Hal may have been jealous.
On their last job, Hal ripped Johnny off and took more than his fair share of the cut then lied about it. By the time Johnny found out, Hal had already left under the guise of not wanting to settle down at the Crater.
The Ol' Weston Shuffle: The main objective of the quest is to free Hal from slavery, as instructed by Johnny Weston. However, after Hal is freed, Johnny reveals that the true motive for freeing Hal was so that Johnny could personally kill him, and Hal dies at the end of the quest for having previously betrayed Johnny.