Well the problem was ink seeping onto the finger grip area. Perhaps due to a type of capillary action due to the fine texture of the grip. I don't know for sure what the cause was. I notice what appeared to be a hairline crack in the feeder itself, though this could have been a seem from a manufacturing process. So maybe it was the seal where the feeder and nib meet the grip.
No matter how the pen was handled, this happened. Example: cleaned the pen, relieved pressure in the converter so nothing was being "pushed" out, laid the pen horizontally on my desk for a few minutes, picked it up and found ink on the grip again.
Believe me, it sounds odd, but it happened time and time again.
But in the end, Levenger took care of it and I'm happy. Been using the pen exactly as I was before and have had no issues whatsoever.