While I have been enamored with and busy flying my Taranis, I have been neglecting the other Gallente interceptor that I am qualified to fly. The Ares is a very different beast from the Taranis. Instead of being designed for damage and direct combat, it is intended for speed and the ability to lock down the warp drives of ships from a distance. Due to my financial success the past few weeks, I decided to spend some of the money that was burning a hole in my pocket on an Ares interceptor and try flying it for a day.
I stepped into "Scary Ares" and took a deep breath. That new ship smell permeated the air and I marveled at the soft and clean shag carpeting I had custom ordered from the dealer in Jita. I sat down in the all too familiar pilots seat and did a diagnostics check. Everything about this ship reminded me of my Taranis with just a few subtle changes... both ships are after all based on the same hull of the Atron frigate. With everything appearing in order, I requested permission from the tower to undock and slowly made my way out of the station. Once we had traveled a few kilometers I decided to see what this baby could do. I aligned for open space, popped open the glass cover on the MicrowarpDrive button and gave it a jab. The massive engines roared and I was thrown back in my seat as my new ship sped ahead. In a few moments we had reached our maximum speed and I was excited to see that we were cruising at well over 6500 m/s. About 50% faster than my Taranis!
Eager to see how the performance would be in actual combat, I began to patrol my normal systems. A few jumps down I discovered a few ships on scan, a Merlin frigate, a Brutix battlecruiser and a Comorant destroyer all were nearby. I warped in on the Comorant, leisurely dropped into a distant 20km orbit and began poking him with my railguns. The damage I was doing was absolutely pitiful and it took several minutes to finally break through and destroy his ship. This was a completely different type of experience than the thrilling (and suicidal) Taranis. Next I scanned down the Merlin and warped to his belt as well. I landed just in time to find the Brutix already sitting over the Merlin's mangled wreck! To make matters even more interesting, the pilot of the Brutix was the SAME pilot who had defeated me in a one-versus-one Taranis fight just the other day!
I called to a nearby corp-mate in the system flying a Crow and together we locked down and began pinging the Brutix from afar. We were doing almost no damage but the Brutix could do absolutely nothing to hit or catch us as we orbited from afar. I sent a message out to our entire corporation to let them know we had trapped a wonderfully juicy target and that we needed some backup. Soon, several other pilots arrived and we burned the Brutix down to a heap of scraps.
I flipped up my ships scanner with my left hand as my right one was covered with orange dust from the Cheetos I was eating. I hit the scan button and again saw that there was a Cerberus heavy assault ship somewhere nearby.
I had attempted to scan him down to a specific object earlier but had been unable to do so. He was probably off in the middle of space somewhere. "We don't have the firepower to compete with a HAC anyhow", I thought to myself as I watched the Cerberus suddenly warp in and appear on my ships overview. Frozen in surprise for just a moment I snapped out of it and quickly threw my Cheetos down all over my brand new shag carpeting. Was he looking for a fight or was this just a random accident? I locked him and dropped into a 22km orbit with my warp disruptor and MicrowarpDrive running. I did not have the capability to do any damage but at my current speed and in my current ship there was absolutely nothing his heavy missiles could do to stop me from scrambling him.
I called to my gang and they sprung into action. My mates in a Blackbird, Taranis and Thorax all dropped out of warp and engaged my target as well. With the Blackbird using ECM to jam the Cerberus he was completely helpless as we slowly poked away at his shields. He was doomed to lose his very expensive ship, so I opened a comm channel and made a ransom attempt:
[03:27:17] Spectre3353 > we have a myrm in auro about to jump in
[03:27:23] Spectre3353 > pay 50mil right now and we will let your ship go
[03:27:24] Angry Cerberus > and?
[03:27:25] Spectre3353 > you have 30 seconds
[03:27:31] Angry Cerberus > go f*ck yourself
[03:27:37] Spectre3353 > fair enough
We most certainly did NOT have a Myrmidon battlecruiser about to jump into the system but sometimes you have to lie and exaggerate to get what you want. Regardless, it appeared that this pilot was not going to cooperate so I let my gang know and we finished the job. The Cerberus pilot was very angry. I picked my Cheetos back up off the floor and began to eat while we listened to our victim rant over the local channel...
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