|Water Taxi Transportation|
|Leader:||Carmen Fortuna/Robert Whitman|
|Headquarters:||Mirelurk Bay, New York|
|Location(s):||New York, New Jersey, Connecticut|
|Founded by:||Eddie Fortuna|
|Allies:||Federal Republic of Libeteria, Queensland, Highland|
|Enemies:||Jager Pirates, National Pleasure League, The Machinists|
Eddie Fortuna, a veteran of Libeteria’s Maritime Patrol Force, founded Water Taxi Transportation in 2248. He had retired from active duty early in the year, but by the end of the summer, found the life of a retiree unfulfilling. Using funds he had saved during his twenty-two years of service, the former drill sergeant purchased a tugboat, hired a pair of assistants, and began hauling freight between Governor’s Island and Libeteria’s colonies on Staten Island, Shaolin and Mirelurk Bay.
Thanks to contacts he had previously thanks to his years of military service and the new ones he began developing as a civilian, Fortuna was able to rapidly expand his business. In 2250, he won his first government contract with the federal republic, and by the end of the decade, had been awarded numerous contracts. As the workload he was responsible for increased, Fortuna reinvested his caps in his business, purchasing other vessels and hiring additional crewmembers.
In 2256, at age 51, Eddie Fortuna suffered a stroke that left him paralyzed and incapacitated for a brief time. His daughter, Carmen, took over the business while her father was recovering. She was not as business savvy as her father, and as a result, by the end of the decade, when her father recovered and took over control once again, the company was running red with debt. It would take a cash infusion in the form of an outside investor to keep the company afloat.
Robert Waltman was the source of that cash infusion. A wealthy Brahmin rancher living in Libeteria’s North Shore Shaolin colony, he frequently contracted Water Taxi Transportation to ship his herd to the New York Stockyard to be sold. Though he had become friendly with the Fortuna family over the years, he saw the deal as a business move, as being a part owner of the company would allow him to save on shipping and transportation costs.
In 2063, The Machinists unleashed their mech army on the New York City wastes, plunging the region into war and chaos. From their base in The Bronx, they unleashed crabbers- aquatic automations acting as torpedoes and mines- into the East River, disrupting trade. Thanks to Fortuna’s military service in the Maritime Patrol Force, Water Taxi Transportation was able to get classified reports, advance warnings, and even military transports for his vessels. Thanks to it, his company took very few losses during the conflict. Fortuna lost a single tugboat and its crew during the crisis, as opposed to other shipping ventures, most of which lost more. When the Machinist war had ended, Water Taxi Transportation had become one of, if not the, preeminent shipping companies in the region.
In 2275, Eddie Fortuna, now 70, stepped down from his position as president of the company. Once again, his daughter Carmen took over the business. Older and more experienced, she did not allow the company to falter as she did when she temporarily took over years earlier. She is still not the businessperson her father was, though. Robert Waltman senses this, and has slowly been putting plans into motion to gain majority control of the company.
Water Taxi Transportation employs a little over 100 individuals, in a wide variety of positions, from seamen to white collar workers to laborers. Water Taxi Transportation owns multiple seaworthy vessels. Its fleet consists of seven tugboats, five speedboats, three barges, and three sailboats, and one luxury yacht. All of their boats are painted in the group’s signature yellow-and-black checkerboard pattern.
Activities & Interests
Water Taxi Transpiration makes most of its business from the transport of cargo- mainly brahmin, brahmin meat, and mirelurk meat from Libeteria’s Shaolin colony to other parts of the republic, as well as to the New York Stockyard, Flushtown, and Queensland. The group periodically ships heavier cargo, like scrap, though such shipments generally are far and few in-between.
The group is not fully in the business of personal or mass transit of individuals, but it is a business venture that Carmen Fortuna and Robert Waltman are looking into. Periodically, wealthy individuals charter Water Taxi Transportation vessels, and the organization does not turn them down, but personal transport it is not yet a business model the group can provide and make a profit.
The group is looking to start expanding its reach, sailing up the Hudson River into and reaching settlements in the Hudson River Valley. Additionally, Water Taxi Transportation is currently in the process of restoring a vessel that would allow them to transport cargo and individuals from Libeteria to and from the Kingdom of Highland, in New Jersey, and Haven, in Connecticut. The diesel-powered double-hulled catamaran is powerful enough to withstand the harsher waters of the Raritan Bay and the Long Island Sound, something the majority of the vessels in the Water Taxi Transpiration fleet cannot necessarily be said to do.
Water Taxi Transportation operates out of the Federal Republic of Libeteria, and as such, the organization has a positive relationship with its government. Because of its location based in Mirelurk Bay, the organization has had a strong relationship with the governors of the colony. While they had a good relationship with former governor Eric Randall, the group has an especially strong relationship with the current governor, Lieutenant Peter Starks, a fellow veteran of the Maritime Patrol Force, like Eddie Fortuna.
Outside of Libeteria, Water Taxi Transportation makes regular stops in Flushtown and Queensland.
The Jäger Pirates and National Pleasure League remnants are the two biggest threats to the group on a day-to-day basis. The pirates, operating vessels as powerful and seaworthy as those operated by Water Taxi Transpiration, periodically attack, looking to kidnap individuals and hijack cargo. These attacks generally happen in the lawless areas south of Mirelurk Bay. National Pleasure League remnants, meanwhile, periodically attack vessels heading up the East River. Like the pirates, they are looking to hijack cargo, though they look to enslave individuals that they capture, rather than ransom them.