By Grommakk Dakkar, Dwarf Evoker and Station Three Energetic Zoologist, Naldrin University
Many have said to me, “Grommakk, what is a pottell?” Since so many in our wonderful city are woefully uneducated about even the most common creatures in the oceans of our world, I have decided to write this brief, but acutely incisive, summary.
Pottells are large to enormous leaf pads with a remarkable ability to float on the top of the sea, even while carrying significant weight. Their surface is dotted with clusters of small multi-colored flowers, and their undersides are covered with arrays of tiny, sturdy tendrils. The shapes, colors, and contours of these gigantic leaves vary considerably according to climate. They are strictly saltwater plants, although they do have close cousins in many of the lakes and rivers of the Tamarran Continent.
The immense size and strength of pottells makes them perfect for use as transportation, and indeed many ride them to travel the waters of our world. The smallest, only a few feet wide, can carry a child or a dwaheely or two. Medium-sized pottells (20-30 feet wide) are frequently used for short travel along the coasts, and typically carry 6-10 passengers. They do not go into the deep oceans, as the roughness is more than they can manage. Large pottells, however, reach spans of hundreds of feet and can easily navigate throughout even the deepest and most violent oceans of our planet, and can carry many dozens of passengers.
A pottell typically moves by drifting along the currents of the sea. However, they do have a limited capacity to propel themselves by rippling their fringes, paddling through the water at speeds up to 25 miles per hour. Of course, if they are carrying passengers, they travel much more slowly. I would note that folk who travel by pottell are mostly those who love the sea and enjoy getting wet.
A number of mystics have mastered the ability to pilot these unique creatures. Widely known as “pottell pilots,” though they prefer the title “navigator,” they play a vital part in using pottells for transportation. The skills of these navigators, and their love for pottells, is well-known. The most accomplished of them are able to convince pottells to curl their leaf into a ball to shield their passengers from waves and winds. Accounts tell of navigators whose pottells would curl up into an impermeable ball, allowing them to travel through the worst storms and submerge themselves to travel under the waves for hours at a time.
With that I will end my discourse, hoping that and it serves the needs of those who desire a greater understanding of our world.