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The Fruit Fly is an airship which flies between Auckland and Lima, but is also capable of traveling to Panama City or stopping at Pitcairn Island.

The airship's captain (and sole crew member) is Maia Tawhiao. Described by Passepartout as a "rubenesque woman", Maia and her husband (now deceased) were among the first merchants to transport kiwi fruit from New Zealand to South America. As such, most of the food and drink aboard is themed around the kiwi fruit. Maia, as the passengers will soon notice, is quite deaf, and the captain's disability becomes a source of curiosity for Passepartout, who ends up convinced that Madame Tawhiao's hearing is impaired and he adjusts his conversational behavior accordingly.