Dahlia is a Kwai Su Nyao (“Swift Ox”), Mid-Bulk Transport owned and serviced by Dylan McMurdock.
Manufactured by Lu Se Jiang (Green River) shipping, Kwai Su Nyao literally means “Swift Ox”. The ship was designed as a tramp freighter with enough brute force and ignorance to get her across the ‘Verse in short order carrying large bulk cargoes.
Pre-dating the Firefly series which she bears similarities to, the Kwai Su Nyao series enjoyed nearly two decades of commercial success until dwindling sales prompted a rethink at production level. Although she operated as a freighter pure and simple, the success of the Firefly series led to the retro-fitting of passenger berths a grandly titled “Observatory”. These additions were intended to give the craft a “Jack Of All Trades” air which was reflected in the marketing for a grand re-release of the series.
In reality the passenger berths were poorly located and the “Observatory” proved to be little more than some additional chairs and a basic display nav-chart table which utilized spaced originally intended for air scrubbers. Such facts led the ship’s detractors to accuse Green River of a crisis of confidence in their classic line, leading in turn to a confused identity for the ship
None can doubt her “grunt” though. Two oversized reaction drives and a hefty pulse engine means that on full burn a Kwai Su Nyao leaves similar ships in her class standing. These engines also provide a lot of heavy lifting and thrust, sacrificing maneuverability for power.
Despite overheating issues and a reputation for being very fuel hungry, the ship’s reliability and sturdiness have won her a lot of supporters and over 15,000 registered ship are still flying nearly two decades after the end of their production run.
[By Praxedes Design; text from now-defunct fireflyrpg.com]