iption: A life long seaman and director of the Spectre Steamwerks, Captain of the C.S.S. Matanzas, and often referred to as the only honest man in Cowford.
Related Personas: Winslow Beggley, Angus Beggley
Vice Admiral Rudolph Beggley didn't lie. He didn't cheat. He didn't bribe. But what he did do was let the scientists baser instincts take over and allow the man to follow them.
It all started in New York City. Rudolph had arranged a meeting with Dr. P-B-to discuss the possibility of, if not actually coming to Cowford to continue his research, to at the very least share his formula, with a fair percentage on the royalties. Dr. P-B-had formulated a chemical process for refining coal so that it burned hotter, longer, and cleaner. It meant revolutionizing the operating capacities of every boiler in the world.
His flagship the Matanzas alone could steam seven times further with comparable stores of this new coal. The Matanzas was at its home port at dock in the Spectre Steamwerks, and he was using a smaller faster submarine boat for this journey.
At the end of the gang plank he had a dressed wooden table and chairs, upon which sat a chilled bottle of wine, cheeses, crackers and fresh fruit. It was with this arrangement he was fiddling with when carriage deposited the scientist off.
"Doctor!", strode the sailor to his quarry.
"Admiral." The man with a nervous arrogance took the offered hand. "I am intrigued by your proposal, else I would not be here."
"Excellent that you wish to get straight to business! Let us sit!" and with that he offered the Doctor the chair facing his submarine.
For the next half hour or so the harangued over the details but on cue the only other two members of the crew emerged from the hatch. both beautiful, and both wearing the uniform two piece bathing costumes that made life onboard a steam driven submarine bearable.
He knew he had the Doctor hooked when he stammered and attempted to find a better view in mid sentence. "Umm… is this your crew?"
Beggley grinned. "Yes it is. Quarters would be tight aboard if you returned to Cowford with us I am afraid. It gets very hot and very close during the journey."
"All I have to do is come to your city and look at you facilities?" The man of science nearly fell out of his chair as Seawoman K-P-pulled some slack out of a mooring line.
"If you choose not to stay, then the city will give you a train ticket back to here."
"I accept then!"
That was five days ago. Now the small submarine was approaching the inlet to the St. Johns River Northeast of Cowford proper. From all appearances the P-B-wasn't minding the trip.
This is the part where I discovered my submarine facility has been attacked my airship pirates.
The Vice Admiral stood in the conning tower steering the surfaced submarine boat to the burning entrance of his private shipyard as Professor P-B-and the escort he hired for this journey emerged from the deck hatch. Not only was this lady of the night a true artisan of her trade, so the recommendations went, she was also a capable deck hand. Seawoman K-P-and he had no problems operating the small boat for short missions and they had taken a rather circuitous route to return to their homeport, thus giving all parties involved an opportunity to decide if the chemist and Cowford would mesh.
The happy professor, in his traveling attire and the strangely satisfied harlot, borrowing a uniform of the Steamwerks fleet, stood atop the hull looking towards the smoking ruins of the Spectre facilities. The doctor asked, "Do industrial accidents such as this happen often?"
Beggley with held a grimace. When he first spied the burning plant he was wondering how this would be perceived by the Italian chemist, "Well Doctor, we are a developing industrial city. Risk is part of what we do to make the world a better place."
The now uniformed Seawoman K P-emerged in the conning tower behind the Vice Admiral, "What did I miss, Sir?"
"Oh, the Steamwerks is on fire."
"Seen it before. Orders?"
"Put out the fires. Tend to the wounded. Survey the damage." He really wanted to believe it was another industrial accident, but he knew from the damage distribution they were attacked. He would get the whole story soon enough.
"Aye, aye, sir." She winked and brushed against him as the boat rocked in his direction.
Once moored Rudolph started getting the status of the damage, and started issuing orders for the pursuit. He has some special weapons he wanted to try out.
He went to his office and ringed City Hall. Not the voice of Stella Luna who usually answered, "Mayor Beggleys office."
"Good morning Mr. Mayor." Rudolph was snarky with his brother Angus.
Angus grumpy to an extreme, "I am kind of busy right now Rudy."
"Well… Angie… I am guessing it has something to do with the fire."
"Oh that. The reports are coming in but witness's say they were attacked by airship pirates. The big news is the Butchers tore out a wall in my office and kidnapped Miss Luna.
"Didn't they do that last month? None the less why would any one attack the Steamwerks?"
"Look Rudy, I have to go and get down to the crisis center. Besides this the Vice-Mayor is dealing with a herd of Georgia Woolless Mammoths that ran through the Conservatory. You know how she feels about that place" he paused, "If I hear something I will let you know."
"See you Ang."
Seawoman K-P- entered into his office in a hurry, "We were attacked by airship pirates. A ship called the Abhorrent."
"I never heard of that one."
"Me neither. It doesn't sound like anything Professor Fate or the Butchers own.
"Or do. The Butchers are hands on. They would never bring in an outside agency. Fate has too much class to rent a thug."
"Not primary characters in our little drama at all are they?"
"Not like you or I sir."
"Means we can have our way with them anyway we wish."
"Are we going after them, sir?" She smiled coyly.
The Admirals grin was warm and menacing, "I'm up for a fight."
"I shall have the Matanzas prepared then, sir!"
"Very good! We leave at high tide!"
Two days later; The Abhorrent had multiple harpoons sticking out of its deflating envelope, and what was left of the cabin was burning. The fires would be out soon because the harpoons were anchored to the submarine boat that was diving.
It was a short chase. Once the airship, heavy and massive entered into the jets stream the upper winds pummeled her back to the coast its engines unable to compensate for the kiting effect. Meanwhile the Sheriff had alerted the Civil Defense League who in turn used the wireless and signal lights to let the crew of the Matanzas know the whereabouts of the air pirates. Great clockwork instruments utilizing large mirrors and magnifying glasses stationed along the coast reflected and intensified the harsh Florida sun up on the airships gas bags cause a few of the cells to over inflate and rupture. It was the first step that turned the predator into the prey.
Pitcairn and Sonja were all that was left capable of seeing to the function of the airship. And hey were marginal at best. The master of the air vessels face was melted away from the sticky incendiary that was lofted for the control room. The rest targeted the lower decks where the ordinance was stored. Sonja was missing the left arm a few inches below the elbow from the cutlass of Seawoman K-P-who lead the boarding party.
Sonja cried out, "Surrender! For the love of God surrender!"
"They are taking us down!"
The Matanzas kept descending….