NEW NEVERMIND: A Gnomish Citadel
Abandoned dwarven citadels are often taken over by gnomes, who simulate the effects of the forges with their various gizmos. In reality, their gizmos add nothing to the final output of the system, causing the ship to drift as aimlessly as when it was abandoned.
-- Lorebook of the Void, page 47
Although tinker gnomes (the gnomoi of Krynn) have been known in the Spheres since the Unhuman War, the gnomoi have been very rare until recently. Most of the tinkers encountered in space are actually long-lost descendants of early explorers; groundling gnomoi of Krynn stopped launching new ships after the Cataclysm (Lorebook of the Void, page 88) severely damaged Mt. Nevermind. In fact, Seeker historians have located records indicating that the "Starfarer's Guild" portion of Mt Nevermind exploded due to an excess of blasting powder (due for export) on its docks.
In the past couple of years, however, the Astronomy Guild and the Flight Mechanics Guild have ressurected the long-defunct Spelljamming Committee, and acquired a few spelljamming helms. (One persistant rumor is that the Arcane gave the gnomes a free helm to get them back into space because they actually like the gnomoi. Questioned Arcane have remarked "We are businessmen, not a charity.") The unleashed gnomoi immediately began an exploration of the space surrounding Krynn and its three moons.
One of the early discoveries was a 700 ton dwarvish citadel, apparently abandoned and left to fall to Krynn. The gnomoi took this rock as an ancient abandoned gnomoi colony, boarded immediately, and (according to their report) stabilized its orbit. The station was reclaimed in the name of Mount Nevermind, and a message was relayed to the mountain asking for reinforcements.
Fortunately, the message system used (which involved homing pigeons and a modified ballista) only allowed for short messages, and the drifting citadel was given a short name (by gnomish standards, anyway). The name, which loosely translates as "A huge mountain-like astronomical drifting without direction previously inhabited by abandoned, surely by gnomes, and featuring a huge sculpture of a gnome explorer on the front, which can serve us as a new Nevermind and home of future gnomish space explorers" was shortened to New Nevermind by non-gnomoi.
The Spelljamming Commiteee, after assessing its meager resources (and being nagged by the Philosophers Guild that "space is for everyone"), invited other principalities and organizations on Krynn to send representatives to their new colony. The Wizards of High Sorcery offered one observer from each Order. The elvish, dwarvish, human, and dragon kingdoms (politely or laughingly) rejected the offer. The kender offered one hundred representatives. (Upon hearing this, the Wizards of the Black Robes immediately rescinded their offer of a representative.)
The gnomoi and kender settlers have a total population of about 300 creatures, plus a few hundred pets. The gnomoi have begun a series of "restorations and modernizations" on New Nevermind. Among the most noticeable renovations are:
- The construction of an observatory on the top of the citadel. (The Astronomy Guild wants to update its charts.) The construction is going well (which for the gnomoi means "no explosions so far") and has brought new prestige to the Lens Committee of the Glassmakers Guild.
- A ring of wooden docks was build around the equator of the citadel, to allow visiting ships someplace to tie up. (Two sidewheelers crashed into each other last year trying to maintain standard orbit.) The kender just love pestering those who dock their ships on "the Halo".
- The citadel's face is being remodels by the Stoneworker's Guild ("Terribly unstylish beard -- looks like a grumpy dwarf."). Work recently halted, however, as the Blacksmith's Guild has requested permission to add a chimney (shaped like a giant smoking pipe) for venting fumes, and the Horticulturists Guild suggested replaced the whole beard with shrubbery to clean the citadel's air faster). The Stoneworkers Guild charged the pipe was ugly and that shrubbery was undignified, but the Blacksmiths Guild charged it wasn't as ugly as the Stoneworkers mothers, and the whole matter was referred to a Aesthetics and Iconography subcommittee of the Artists Guild (back on Krynn), who haven't responded, as they are still reviewing submissions for a new design.
- A set of steering vanes (similar to the Rock of Bral's, only more garish) have been built on the base, sides, and top of the citadel. The gnomes claim these stabilize the orbit of New Nevermind and give them control of its orbit. The Wizards of High Sorcery claim that the citadel, in reality, is drifting in a constantly changing orbit due to the conflicting gravity of Krynn's three moons, and point out the gnomes can't even steer New Nevermind in a straight line. The gnomes have countered that "We're still testing the maneuvering vanes and there's not much maneuvering involved in a straight line, is there?".
The continued bickering of citadel inhabitants has led human spacefarers to nickname the citadel "The Rock of Bull".
New Nevermind is run much like a small asteroid colony, only less organized and more open to visitors. It is officially ruled by the Citadel Council, who have most of the same authority the Grand Council has in Mt. Nevermind (unless, of course, passing the buck to Kyrnn-bound committees). Important guilds of the Citadel Council include the Astronomers Guild, the Flight Mechanics/Spelljamming Guild, Chemistry Guild (which has moved most of its blasting powder labs to New Nevermind, where the product can be more easily sold to spacefarers), and the Military Guild, which makes sure New Nevermind has a full complement of weaponry (the gnomoi aren't a militant society, but they're not stupid, either: They have met the neogi).