The Crown has an interest in individuals with powerful Semblances, hiring and using rogue Huntsmen centered around Vacuo to secretly traffic people for a currently unknown objective. Current targets include Team CFVY and August Caspian.
Prior to the Fall of Beacon, the Crown amassed a vast collection of files on individuals whose Semblances are shown to carry immense potential. During this time, the Crown potentially infiltrated Beacon Academy in order to collected information on powerful students, amongst these including Team CFVY, as hypothesized by Bertilak Celadon. Sometime during this, they made contact with rogue Huntsmen Carmine Esclados and Bertilak Celadon to carry out covert operations for their goals.
Sometime after Beacon's fall, the Crown assigned Carmine and Bertilak to escort and traffic Edward Caspian and August Caspian from the settlement of Sumire in Vale to an undisclosed location in Vacuo in order to obtain a Semblance that allowed the user to create massive mood bombs that would trigger Grimm attacks. Under the belief Edward Caspian was the user of this Semblance, Carmine and Bertilak set the guise that they'd be selling their service to provide Edward and his grandson, August Caspian, safe protection from the Grimm into Vacuo.
In order to maintain the disguise of noble Huntsmen, Carmine and Bertilak defended the settlers of Tuff from the Grimm, gaining the trust of their mayor, Slate. The group traveled to Schist, and then Gossan, collecting more and more people to defend, and as such more protection fees from the travelers.
Carmine and Bertilak met Team CFVY in the settlement of Feldspar, who had received a distress call from Gossan due to a Grimm invasion. After a Grimm attack in Feldspar, Carmine and Bertilak helped CFVY lead the settlers to safety without any casualties, and agreed to take them to safety in Coquina.
In the desert, a sandstorm separates CFVY and Feldspar's travelers from Carmine, Bertilak, Velvet Scarlatina and the Caspians, who were ahead of the former group. The group reaches a rendezvous with Carmine, and find that Edward and Bertilak had gotten lost. In reality, Carmine had used her Semblance to create a cover for Bertilak to take Edward to their objective. Under suspicions, Fox Alistair looks for and finds Bertilak trying to smuggle Ed, the former being enraged that he and Carmine were deceived and their true target was supposed to be Gus. Fox and Ed battle Bertilak, who threatens them with his master's plans before being defeated.
Meanwhile, after CFVY encounters a Blind Worm, the group realizes Carmine and Gus had vanished with a dust devil after Fox and Ed arrive with Bertilak's body. The Huntsmen-in-training catch up to and defeat Carmine alongside Ed with immense difficulty, rescuing Gus from the trafficker. The Blind Worm returns but is defeated by Team SSSN, who helps escort Carmine and Bertilak to jail in Coquina.
Months later, Carmine and Bertilak quickly escape their confinements and escaped into the City of Vacuo. Team CFVY begins to search for the Crown and their associates illegally in the city without permission from Shade Academy, whilst Shade's professor Rumpole conducts an investigation of her own.