Forty-seven years ago, a gnome named Korillo Kreegan, met Thimys Fairchild, a master acolyte of Boki, the goddess of secrets. He explained to Thimys that his quest to find the hidden pieces of Boki's ship had led him to the great library beneath Appelkamp monestary. As Thymis assisted Korillo in the library, he became as fascinated with the quest as Korillo and joined the gnome in the search. For twenty-three years, they had many adventures as they traveled about the world, looking into obscure, and sometimes dangerous, places. All those years led to them succeeding in their quest. With all the parts collected, it fell to Korillo to craft them into a working vessel. This was what Korillo had longed to do from the very beginning of his quest. The first thing he had to do was craft the pieces into the Wheel of Wandering . This took him over a year. With the wheel assembled, he turned to designing a ship to put it on.
Why a Keelboat?
"I have designed a ship to look like Desh Honka!" Korillo explained to Thimys who had come by for a visit. "Sure, I must wait for a berth in the shipyards, as well as come up with the coins to fund such a major construction, but about five years she will be done." "That is beautifully done, Korillo," Thimys said, as he admired the designs. "Sadly, I dont see how we would ever get to fly her, Korillo." "What? She will be my ship!" "You don't think your king would commandeer such a large and powerful vessel built in his shipyards?" Thimys pointed out, then added, "You have complained for years that your family connections don't reach the crown." Korillo's shoulders slumped. He scowled down at his designs. "I would never get to sail her," he said dejectedly. Then, he snapped up straight, smiling. "Unless I make her smaller!" "Smaller would be great, Korillo," Thimys agreed. "But why not make a keelboat? They seem all the rage on the waters." Korillo snorted. "Desh Honka was a majestic ship, Thimys. I am surprised that a master acolyte of Boki would not want to see Desh Honka fly again." "Oh, I would love to, Korillo! And crewed by acolytes as in the days of old!" Thimys exclaimed. He then heaved out a long sigh. "But I know that such a thing just won't ever happen. I don't want to see Desh Honka flown by those who would never honor Boki." "But a keelboat, Thimys?" Korillo said, his nose wrinkled in mild disgust. Thimys grinned at him. "Boki is the goddess of secrets, Korillo," he said. "I think she would be pleased for a little keelboat to travel about with no one able to see its real capabilities." Korillo stood very still and silent, his eyes blinking slowly. After a minute, he looked over at Thimys. And grinned. "Oh, my goodness, but that's clever." He finally said. "I shall call it the Gosling."
At the stern of the Gosling is the only cabin with room for two cot beds with a small writing table between them. They are all firmly bolted in place. Stowes are bolted under each cot. Pegs and hooks on the walls hold various clothes and gear so they don't roll about. On top of the cabin, a simple wood-framed pavilion houses the helm and ship's wheel. For now, the ship's wheel is a common one nicknamed Old Moldy. From the flat roof of the cabin to mid deck, a framework stands that holds up a canvas canopy. This provides shade during the day and, by hanging side canvas, it can become a tent for the crew or passngers to sleep under. This framework can be taken down to make room for a small mast on each side of the Gosling. A triangular sail is then hung from these masts that reach out over the water to catch the wind. This pair of stay sails may be small but combined they provide the same sail power as a large sail on a much taller mast, which the Gosling is not designed for. Instead of wind, the Gosling is powered by magic, a common design in gnome-made keelboats. This gives these boats a nice steady pace even when traveling against the currents or the wind. Though this pace is steady, it is not the fastest pace. The stay sails add speed to the Gosling as does rowing. Combining wind or rowing to the gnome magic, makes the Gosling a speedy vessel, even for a keelboat. By adding outriggers, the Gosling can travel deep water lakes, coastal waters and shallow seas. This greatly expands the number of ports the Gosling can reach by water. At the bow of the Gosling there is a small raised deck about three feet high. This is very handy when steering through very tight places. Beneath this deck is stored the rail-lista and its store of clay gourds filled with various alchemies. The stay sails, neatly rolled and folded, are kept in here as well. They are stuffed in and placed to hide the rail-lista yet able to be quickly moved when the weapon is needed. A rope cargo net holds it all in.
Once the Gosling was completed, Korillo gifted it to Thimys without waiting to see how, or even if, the magic worked! He left the testing to Thimys, who waited a full year before sending a detailed report back to Korillo. The gnome barely read it and added it to his "Gosling Project" notes. He did take the time to send a thank you letter back to Thimys then returned to losing himself in his newest secret obsession: designing a flying fortress ship. For now, the ship's wheel is a common one nicknamed Old Moldy. With the current state of things after The End Of Instant , Thimys felt it best to hide the Wheel of Wandering in a vault.
What is a Keelboat?
Other keelboats serve as trading vesels for traveling merchants. They also serve as homes to the rivermen, who call no port home. Rivermen often get involved in underhanded affairs.
Some keelboats are used to sail cargo in the waterways too small or shallow for ships. These keelboats tend to have a long stern oar for rowing and steering. A tall mast for sails is also built into them giving them good speed.
In the years after the Gosling was built, Thimys would take a few weeks away from his other duties to travel about as a spice merchant. He has built himself a reputation as a refined spice merchant selling the best quality spices from all over the world. By limiting his trading forays to just a few weeks a year, people were used to him appearing now and again and not according to the usual patterns of other traders. For the last few years, he has been traveling with his grandson, Fawkes. With his grandson able to handle the Gosling and the spice trade, Thimys has been able to do even more "other" things. A handful of other acolytes often travel with them. Most come along and serve as the crew while a few are passengers. These are all Brethren usually out to do secret work at Thimys's orders. With the recent murder of Thimys, things are unsettled. The only thing that is certain is that the Gosling now belongs to Fawkes. What will he do?