LISTHAVEN – A group of three meat vendors have been taken into custody for smuggling what turned out to be human meat into the market. Officers from the House of Hedding discovered the individuals yesterday when a bazaar patron was spotted with a skewer of smoked meat. “I seen that something was amiss, since we only let meat in if it’s on-the-bone,” said Al Barrim, who was acting Sergeant of the Watch that day.
Many upscale markets in the Verges have strict meat policies to account for this type of thing. Everything sold in the Listhaven market must pass through a guard checkpoint, and meat is inspected by a credentialed physician.
Barrim said this doesn’t happen often in Listhaven. “Not here in the bazaar. We try to keep it nice for the classy folk. If you want unchecked things, take your clink to the Row.” The row is the lower class neighborhood in Listhaven, which has limited oversight due to security forces in the area being undermanned. Citizens of the area don’t seem to mind the lack of accountability.
“What do I care what meat it is? If it didn’t go taint, don’t much matter to me,” remarked one resident, who was poking a string of sausages. Then she haggled with the vendor before buying one. “Hawker says it’s from a sow. Maybe a lie, maybe not. Don’t care.”
When asked why the vendors would smuggle the meat into the market when they could have sold it in the Row, Commodore Rame Fegal, who is Listhaven’s Chief Magistrate, explained that it was the allure of a higher payout. “There is less competition in the market, and folks who frequent the bazaar have heavier purses.”
Commodore Fegal said the three would be charged with trafficking illegal goods and sent to Everwind City. “They’ll probably sit in a highcell for a few days and then be put to work.” A highcell is a wrought iron cage atop the outer wall of the city. Prisoners inside the cells are exposed to high winds. “Longest I ever saw a person last up there was twelve days. He lives in Rendraught now.” Rendraught is an asylum in the Clutch Springs district of Everwind City.
The smugglers are expected to be extradited by week’s end. Given that the meat was confirmed as being human-sourced, the identity of the victim(s) remains a mystery.