“The Great Coffee Shortage” was misnamed in Beryl’s opinion. Rumor expounded the problem and people rushed to buy coffee supplies alongside scalpers and smugglers. Prices were rising even though there wasn’t a real crisis yet. Even at her best she had never understood the trade market.
She was not at her best.
There was no use lamenting what already passed. Their problems multiplied while the plans backfired. Beryl had to accept that Tepic’s plan had somehow failed. He got off a transmission, but it was garbled. They had known roughly where he had been, but the pirates moved on. Now he was captured like Cyan with no rescue coming soon.
Maltheus made the suggestion of sending several ships and triangulating a position, but two ships were lost around the same time. The only thing they discovered from that was there were pirates in both air and nautical vessels with separate teams. and some had even taken to land. An attack on Cuffs had twice destroyed some of Scottie Melniks stock of alcohol.
Mr. Melnik himself was under siege on several fronts, assassins were coming for him directly. and a ton of dynamite had been found stored under Cuff’s. A journal entry from ‘Sir Alec Beowald’, the blowhard hunter, had revealed the group of assassins were plotting against him. It was likely Dibble, from the note found on his body, was slain after overhearing their plot.
Beryl couldn’t help but make a list in her head of what they needed to do. It kept her focused, something easy for her to lose now. The city needed to solve a Coffee shortage on land, sea, and air being created by pirates and scalpers. They needed to rescue the kidnapped people and vessels. They needed to stop the assassination of Mr. Melnik. And they needed to do it before they attacked again if the road outside of Cuffs was any indication. The broken cobbles from that attack had been aimed at the armed men and women stationed outside.
They needed a plan. They needed a group of people who could make a plan of action and hunt down these never do wells. Perhaps the navy could mobilize and work with others now Babbage was in trouble. Even if they did not she knew Book would mobilize soon. She would be back from her stake out soon.
She sent out letters to a few people who she thought might be interested. Maybe if she made it worth their while and got them all together they’d all work out what needed to be done. The first name on her list was Emerson Lighthouse. He loved adventures. Hopefully he wouldn’t hide under his bed like Avariel and Yang did when she came knocking these days.