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We can't puppet for you right now
A simple thing

When there are GMs active but for this or that reason they cannot puppet for you (too busy, or they don't know how to/don't have clearance to solve your issue, or there are IC constraints in effect) I'd love if the player could be notified so they don't have to spend half an hour waiting fruitlessly, and poking at the already overworked staff.

It doesn't even have to be an xhelp, just an anonymous GM ping that says something like:

"Staff notifies you that your puppet cannot be processed presently. Please leave a @request-puppet or try again at another time. Thanks for your patience!"

Whaddya say?

The @puppet-request process does tell you not to wait around and it already implies they can't puppet it if it isn't being puppeted.
Sometimes it is extremely dangerous to linger in some areas waiting for a puppet that may never come.
I'm sure the 'don't wait around' takes that into account.
Just give it five minutes or so upon greeting the NPC, and if they don't respond to you file a puppet request.

That's what I do, anyway.

I think that players should be able to handle this without a GM telling them anything. I am not even sure if GMs can reliably determine whether or not you feel that your character can or can't linger. The person best equipped to make this call is the player.

You really have two possible situations and I think you should be choosing between them from based on your character's personality and the IC situation.

1)

If your IC situation makes you feel comfortable ICly waiting fort the NPC to have time, feel free to wait and try a few times. If the GMs notice and have time, they will grab the puppet. If they don't respond, submit a puppet request if needed.

2)

If your IC situation makes you feel that you can not linger, then don't. Tell the NPC something like, "Mano. Sorry but I can't stick around. I got bakas on hunting for me right now. But we need to talk. I'm Hunted on SIC. Phone number's 123-4567." Then get out of there and submit that puppet-request.