Halo: Nightfall: ONI: Trade Barriers
ONI: Trade Barriers is a Second Story of Halo: Nightfall's Episode 5: Devil Take the Hindmost. It depicts Dr. Brynn Morad attempting to investigate the details surrounding the death of Alerian courier Indrid Lota. Her inquires are intercepted by the Office of Naval Intelligence and is shut down.
Halo Channel summary
|“||Appropriation of SEDMED AI “NOX” contains autopsy report of Sedran citizen Rowan Daoud as reported by Brynn Morad M.D. Security flags were raised when Dr. Morad attempted multiple times to obtain classified information on details surrounding the death of Alerian courier Indrid Lota. Further data revealed regarding the fall of Alerian mining union Mols’Desias and its potentially far-reaching effect. NOX has been confiscated by FIXER; SEDMED system purged and reset.||”|
Dr. Morad is in front of her terminal, with ACCESS DENIED blinking across it.
- Dr. Morad: NOX, what was Indrid Lota carrying upon admittance?
- NOX: Access denied.
- Dr. Morad: Override.
- NOX: (Sternly) Access denied.
- Dr. Morad: NOX, this is something we've never seen before. Override Permissions.
- NOX: I am sorry Doctor. Protocol 192-Delta prohibits me from sharing that information without proper authorization.
- Dr. Morad: I have the proper authorization! What was Indrid Lota carrying?
- NOX: Doctor, I cannot do that. Please refer to -
- Dr. Morad: NOX answer me, I need to know!
- NOX: I'm sorry Doctor.
Dr. Morad is locked out of the system, reaching the exclusion limit of Protocol-192-D. Flashes back to before the flagging.
- SEDMED Personal Assistant: SEDMED online.
- Dr. Morad finishes her work on the body of a victim and walks towards the terminal.
- Dr. Morad: Doctor Brynn Morad.
- Scanner: Vocal Match.
- SEDMED Personal Assistant: Identity Confirmed. Welcome Doctor.
- Dr. Morad performs her report as the screen cuts to the body and the cataloging of his personal effects.
- Dr. Morad: Performing forensic autopsy on SD-464 - Rowan Daoud - eighth of February 2556. All clothing and personal effects have been removed by assistant Lynn Baistese. The body is of a well-developed adult male measuring 68 inches tall, age twenty-five. The reported weight in life was 160 pounds. Cause of death is unknown.
After she finishes her autopsy report, the terminal begins to track her movements and brings up relevant information as she requests it.
- Dr. Morad: NOX, search the cold case files for symptoms matching black veins. Cross-reference with Guillain-Barré.
- NOX: One match found.
- Dr. Morad: Read match.
The screen cuts between the investigation of the virus and her autopsy report.
- Dr. Morad (report): Initial findings linked to blood cell metatasis and clotting in the lungs. Skin shows signs of acute hypoxia or cyanosis.
- NOX: Medical records retrieved from Ares Hospital in Aleria. Case Number Zebra Indrid Lota. Deceased November 21, 2554.
- Dr. Morad (report): Chart states that upon arrival, SD-464 showed symptoms similar to Guillain-Barré syndrome. The body increasingly became weaker and was induced into a state of paralysis. Investigation into the cardiac muscle and skeletal fiber showed signs of severe inflammation, contraction, and atrophy.
- NOX: Body was discovered in a state of debilitating rigor, veins blackened from embolism. Indrid Lota was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome but the official cause of death is undetermined.
- Dr. Morad (report): SD-464 confirms that the chemical agent attacks. Much like smallpox, it appears to be only affecting humans. Tags SD-302 through SD-535 all exhibit exact symptoms.
- Dr. Morad: NOX, retrieve information on Aleria.
- NOX: Aleria is located in the Outer Colonies, the Elduros system. Median age is 45 years. Maximum daytime temperature is 33 degrees Celsius. For the last 103 years, rain has not fallen.
- Dr. Morad (report): Unlike smallpox, the virus is making the human body turn on itself. Blood is rejecting oxygenation and increasing nitrogen consumption.
- Dr. Morad: NOX, retrieve information of Indrid Lota. Zebra-220-801.
- NOX: Indrid is the first son of a Silas Lota, miner and Bobeya Lota, teacher. At 15, Indrid [NOX talks really fast].
- Dr. Morad (report): The depletion of nitrogen stops amino acid production, quickly the body ceases to produce proteins or nucleic acids.
- NOX: At 20, he joins Mols'Desias. Twenty-four, Mols'Desias dissolves. His father dies the same year and no further records exist.
- Dr. Morad: NOX, what is Mols'Desias?
- Dr. Morad (report): The virus effectively rewires and tears the DNA chain. If the scale of this were larger....
- NOX: Mols'Desias was founded in 2349 as a mining league guaranteeing protection and a steady wage. The prolonged persistence of the planetary drought is a major factor in the eventual dissolution of the union. On Aleria, a day of smuggling is equivalent to a month of mining; because of this, Aleria was losing much of its labor force to criminal activity: mining off-world and smuggling contraband back into Aleria ports and trafficking straight to the highest bidder. The depression on Aleria was so saturated the authorities became complicit in the crimes and Mols'Desias could no longer guarantee protection.[note 1]
- Dr. Morad: NOX, you didn't report if Lota was carrying any personal effects upon admittance to Ares Hospital.
Protocol 192-D comes into effect.
- NOX: I'm sorry doctor.
- Halo: Nightfall states that the mining union was founded in 2349. However, human colonization outside the Sol system did not begin until 2362, a full 13 years later. Given this, Aleria could not have existed any earlier than 2362 when the Odyssey was launched. Therefore it must be assumed that the year of the union's founding is an error.