My ship came out of jump and to a grinding halt in the system of Mara. One of the blobbiest, baity-est and bloodiest systems in low security space was completely abandoned except for a lone ship. I calibrated my instruments and located the vessel and it's pilot. He had only seven days of experience and was predictably sitting in the first asteroid belt on the list. It was time to go to work. I pointed my Taranis towards its target and was pushed back into my seat as we accelerated into warp.
After so much of the same, you begin to get a bit jaded and settled into a familiar groove. Even the most intense of feelings fail to invoke the same response they used to. This time, for some unknown reason, I was experiencing the emotions the old way. My heart was pounding, my hands were shaking and the sweat was beading up upon my forehead. Maybe it was the reminder of how I used to fly this same ship into the same belt against the same types of opponents when I was just a young pilot. Maybe it's just because no matter how many times you engage in the ritual of combat, you can never completely shake off the normal human anticipation of a dangerous situation. Maybe it was the vodka and ginger ale.
Whatever the reason, I tried to regain my composure as we jerked out of warp and landed in the belt. With an approach course set in and a lock established, I attempted to disrupt his engines and I put my finger on the trigger, ready to engage. The Caracal turned, pointed towards a distant stargate...
He warped away.
I banged my head down upon the console, oblivious to the pain. What an incredible tease.
Old Man Star
As much fun as it can be to pirate, flying the same ships against the same opponents in the same few systems can get a little bit tiresome. To try and break the monotony and keep things fun, we recently decided to try having planned ops with a theme or gimmick every weekend or two. I won't lie or try to take credit for this idea... it is blatently stolen from the Bastards as they seem to come up with some great ideas for gangs and roams.
The first of our ops occurred on Sunday and had a relatively simple theme: All pilots were required to be flying a tech 1 cruiser with some sort of EWAR or logistical bonus. In addition, every ship had to equip at least one mod that took advantage of that ship bonus. In some cases this wasn't a big deal (tracking disruptors on an Arbitrator or ECM on a Blackbird are very useful) but in others it was pretty gimping (remote sensor damps on a Celestis and target painters on a Bellicose are less than stellar). Having just finished months of training for Gallente recons and shield tanking, I decided to go with a gank fit Celestis. The rest of our gang was composed of a few Bellicose's, a few Arbitrators, an Exqueror, a Blackbird, an Augurer and a Caracal (thanks for ruining the theme Sitrep).
So with our motley gang of crappy ships we set out on our usual route to the always entertaining system of Old Man Star. We stopped in at Tama but found nothing interesting in the area except for a couple of faction warfare pilots. One was silly enough to get caught by our blob. Finally after a long and fairly uneventful trip, we sent our scout into Old Man Star to find us a fight. Several battlecruisers were on the gate and a battleship was in a belt. Almost immediately we had found playmates and I gave the order to jump into the system and warp together to engage the Maelstrom in the belt. He was apparently already under attack by a couple other ships that quickly fled once our fleet landed and we quickly melted the very, very comically fit ship.
...but that wasn't it. During the fight, a fleet of cruisers and battlecruisers that saw us jump through and warp from the gate arrived in the belt and began to engage us as well. We held together as best we could and took down a few ships with us but our crappy cruisers with their crappy logistics/EWAR bonuses were not enough to hold things together. In the end we took heavy losses and seven Python Cartel pilots were flying home in their pods. It was still quite a fun engagement. I look forward to next weeks sniper cruiser roam.
The past few weeks we have been spending a lot of time in a small pocket of space nearby our home that is only accessible by making one jump through highsec. At first it seemed quite ripe with mission runners and was pretty safe for us to fly around in but things have quickly turned ugly as the targets are drying up and the local pirates have become very aware of our presence. It took us a while to get my ship safely undocked from a station they were camping the other day with remote sensor boosted ships. I was finally able to get away thanks to Andrea Skye parking his cloaked Rapier just off the station as an insta-undock warpable object. The campers were a little bit rude about the whole situation:
[20:57:45] DarkStorm1000 > /emote lachesis needs to pay toll
[20:57:59] Spectre3353 > ill give you 5 isk and a loaf i pinched out a
few minutes ago
[20:58:04] Andrea Skye > or i can make a insta undock and u can stfu
[20:58:05] Spectre3353 > it is extremely fresh so its worth something
[21:00:22] Spectre3353 > well look
[21:00:30] Spectre3353 > i withdraw the 5 isk offer but the poop is
[21:00:50] DarkStorm1000 > your full of shit, so it really is not
The next day we were back, probing for targets when Andrea Skye located a Drake in a safe spot, apparently waiting out a GCC from having killed another pilot on the gate moments earlier. With a Rapier, Lachesis, Thorax and Arbitrator we should have no problem taking down a Drake so Skye warped us to his spot and we quickly locked him down and began firing. I realized just then that this was the very same pilot, named DarkStorm1000 who had tried killing and ransoming my Lachesis a day earlier on the station. It was time for revenge...
He was well into shields when our Thorax pilot informed us that he was taking serious damage and needed to flee... but he had forgotten to a microwarpdrive or afterburner. Slowly we watched as he crawled away from the Drake, losing us a lot of DPS and having him barely get away in structure. Next, our Arbitrator pilot disconnected in mid fight and had to flee as well right when he had logged back in. The Drake was low into shields but now the only damage being applied was a fairly pitiful amount from two recons who's primary roles were to tackle, not to break tanks. We watched in disbelief as the passively tanked Drake's shields began recharging faster than we could bring it down. Eventually we had no choice but to pull back and let him leave. Four on one and we couldn't convert. DarkStorm made sure to let us know in local chat how much we sucked.
I get angry or upset plenty but I usually get over it fast. In this instance I had to simply dock up and log off a few minutes later because the anger and frustration was not subsiding. Very embarassing.
[21:05:57] Albert Wesker620 > stop ill give u everything!!!!!
[21:06:19] Albert Wesker620 > ill jet everything
[21:06:27] Albert Wesker620 > plZ
[21:06:34] Spectre3353 > WE DONT WANT YER BOOTY MATEY YARRRRRRRRRR
[21:06:52] Albert Wesker620 > money anything. plz man i need this
[21:07:17] Lachesis VII > ok
[21:07:20] Lachesis VII > we'll take your money now
[21:07:28] Spectre3353 > 400 million for the pod
[21:07:29] Albert Wesker620 > kill me
[21:07:32] Spectre3353 > pay up now or you die
[21:07:42] Albert Wesker620 > no thnx kill me
[21:07:47] Albert Wesker620 > its just a clone
[21:07:55] Spectre3353 > sing us a song
[21:07:58] Spectre3353 > any song youd like
[21:08:04] Spectre3353 > make it something with a good beat
[21:08:26] Albert Wesker620 > no
[21:08:32] Spectre3353 > how about some dixie chicks
[21:08:34] Spectre3353 > theyre pretty awesome
[21:08:43] Albert Wesker620 > im good. the ship was wat i wanted
[21:08:46] Lachesis VII > well then I guess we'll be here a while, eh?
He never did give in to our demands. Stage fright?
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