Practical Airship Design Part 7

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Splendid she must be!

"How time flies when you are having fun."
Or conversely...
"Life is what happens when you have other plans."

This is the final post in my Practical Airship Design series, which I started way back in November of 2012, 5 years ago!

You can read that initial post and start the series here.

According to the "Contents and Prospectus" this post should have been:

"In conclusion, our Captain has ordered that she must, in addition to being one of the most technologically advanced airships of the age, be one of the most "Splendid"(tm) and this post will attempt to grant his wishes to the best of this poor flight engineer's ability."

Alas, I never got around to writing that post and cannot at the moment remember what I had intended to cover...

However, I think this series does need a formal conclusion, so if you have landed here please stay with me for a bit.

Like any good fictional tale, the action does not take place in isolation from the world around it.  Fictional tales always have a framework that supports the story. For speculative fiction like Steampunk, that framework/world may or may not bear much of a resemblance to the real one. The world of our Role Play group, "The Airship's Mess Deck", is no exception. The world in which we traveled, on the experimental airship the Velvet Brush which is the subject of this series, was similar to the real world physically but its technical and political history was slightly different.

As I mentioned in the first post we tried to limit the fantastical to keep the world realistic, with only a few key changes to make it interesting. Authors are allowed to create any kind of world they like in which to place their tales, but in the case of our Role Playing, we consciously decided to make our shared world a parallel one only slightly different. Physics still works like normal, and even the most fantastical elements are still "believable" in context.  The awesomely powerful core of the Velvet Brush herself being a good example.   

In our world the Velvet Brush was truly a technical marvel, the finest ship in the Royal Airship Navy. No other airship in the world could match her. Being experimental, and therefore fantastically expensive, she was never equaled or copied. During the course of our role play, she survived storms, sabotage, intrigues, and political machinations. Those of us who flew with her across the skies of the world always had her as a solid base for our adventures.

The crew and passengers have moved on to new adventures, however the shared world we created still exists in the imaginations of those who played in the Airship's Mess Deck (see more below). Like the crew of any "happy ship" in the real world, lasting friendships have resulted.

As the Engineering Officer, and eventually the Commander, of our ship, I see her in my minds eye still, an enormous silver and polished brass ship,  moving through the clouds, steam rising from her twin funnels, signal flags hanging from her rails. The Velvet Brush is truly as "Splendid" as she was intended to be. 

Thanks for following along as I tried to do some Practical Airship Design.

I hope you have enjoyed the journey.

Keep your sightglass full, your firebox trimmed, and your water iced.



My character's adventures, along with some of the crew, are posted as Serial Tales on this blog:
"Frozen Sky"
"Lost at Sea"
"Ice and Clockwork"

One of the passengers on our ship has her own adventures chronicled in the brilliant Maddie Hatter stories written by Jayne Barnard
Maddie Hatter and the Deadly Diamond
Maddie Hatter and the Gilded Gauge
Maddie Hatter and the Timely Taffeta
And more coming soon.

Oh, and Parasol Duelling is now a formal sport played all over the world!

Thanks for reading.


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