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Wormhole diving

For a while I’ve wanted to go wormhole diving, that is, head into a wormhole with a ship capable of probing/hunting/surviving by itself and just stalk through looking for targets.

I fit up a dedicated Proteus for this with Ithica a little while ago but we had so much going on I didn’t really feel like I could spare the time to disappear off for a couple of weeks (I”m being optimistic about my survivability). After some time reading Cloaky Bastard (one of my favourite eve blogs) and newly reactivated The Flying Target I decided to use an alt and, with the fit from The Flying Target, head off into wormhole space.

 

My first evening was spent moving through wormhole after wormhole looking for something suitable. I got stuck on the C5 superhighway for a while but eventually managed to navigate my way to an exit. The first few small holes I found were all empty. I stumbled across a few with active POSes but a highly active PvP killboard and most sites still up. I’m looking for a squishier target.

On my second night I found my new temporary home, J111846, currently inhabited by Cohortes Stellaris, a 56 man German corp with a rather interesting killboard. 3m kills to 12.8b losses in 2015 so far. Yes, 3 million.
I scouted out the system bookmarking the various statics, K162s and sites. There were a couple of dead POSes belonging to another corp, most likely previous inhabitants. Two active Domination towers (small and large) and a medium Amarr tower. The Amarr tower seemed to hold various industrial modules indicating potentially active PI chains on the planets.

The following morning I logged in shortly after downtime and scanned down the new signatures. Just as I landed on the last wormhole and pulled probes a Heron belonging to COH arrived, followed shortly by an Occator. I observed them for a while as they sat in the POS shields swapping ships for a bit before taking two Herons and going off scanning.

Conveniently they have a public channel they all seem to be in so I joined it, added them all to watchlist and left again. Before long there was four of them sitting in the POS or off in Herons. Activity continued for most of the morning as I had one eye on them while doing various other things. A couple of interesting ships popped up including a Tengu and a Myrm with no guns.  I followed a Tayra round some POCOs but a quick check of the killboard showed they liked to fit two stabs. I made a quick run out through the lowsec and bought two scrams to refit with my mobile depo if I see them doing it again later.

Screenshot 2015-06-20 13.05.31

 

A procurer at one point warped off and I chased him around looking for him but must have missed him. The system is big enough that D-scan doesn’t reach the whole system and warps take long enough to lose things in the gaps. After a while he returned. He sat in the POS for a while with the Orca before warping off again. This time he warped to the Ore site in system. Excellent. Could it be time to shine? I warped in after him and saw, sure enough, a mining procurer in the site.

Screenshot 2015-06-20 15.29.00

Interesting. Mining drones. 2014 character. Hmm. Fuck it. I slowboat down 100km, manually piloting around some rocks to avoid decloaking.  I swing my ship round to align to a celestial that will take me close to the procurer. I’m hoping he’s fit for yield and I can blap him before he either drops combat drones or is stabbed and warps off.

It’s time. I decloak, point, apply target painters and begin liberal application of torpedoes. The first few volleys hit the target and his shields start to drop, not fast enough. He’s got tank. He starts yellowboxing me so I make sure I’m outside of scram range. He drops combat drones. Well. Shit. I’m hoping I can burn him down before the drones kill me but it doesn’t seem to be happening. In low armor I have to warp off, he still had 20% or so shield left.

 

My first kill attempt was a bust. I warped off, nipped out to lowsec, repaired and came back in. I’m watching them sit in the POS as I write this. The procurer warped back off to the Ore site after a while but it would have been pointless chasing him and he could have fitted a point this time. I’ve decided to stick around in this wormhole for a bit, their killboard is terrible and, with two scrams, I’m hoping to catch the Tayra at some point. Sure, they may be a bit more alert but I’m banking on some hit and runs after they let their guard down.

Only time will tell.

 

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Lowsec Pirates League

So I’ve just finished reading a post by Johnny Twelvebore over at his blog where The Tuskers take on an agreed 5vs5 fight against the Hound of Haides. Go ahead and read it, I’ll wait.

Done? Good.

I love little fun events in Eve. It’s a sandbox game, we have a set of tools that allow us to create things that the developers perhaps never envisioned during development. Previously I’ve organised internal events such as the Hauler Death Race (written about here by Anabaric) or the Bastards vs Meatshields tournament (which Eric Shang writes up here) both of which had great feedback.

I specifically enjoyed the concept of the Bastards vs Meats as we limited the Bastard team to T1 Meta 0 modules on T1 frigates where as the Meats were able to use up to T2 modules and field a T2 frigate ‘flagship’. There were a couple other quirks all in the name of evening the playing field. On one side, a team of experienced PvPers with 60+ million skill points, some of which had alliance tournament experience. On the other, a band of newbies. It was a close match and I suggest you read Erics write up.

The thing about these events are they’re cheap, fun, informal and, most importantly, a bit of a laugh. With no multibillion ISK ships on the line and no life changing prizes the only thing you’re fighting for is pride and the spirit of competition.

In Johnnys post I replied in the comments to a writeup by Red (of the Hounds) offering to repeat the match up with them but against The Bastard, an offer I hope he takes as I expect it’ll be a very fun engagement. While writing that reply I gots a-thinking. The scale of the engagements Hounds have been having are quite managable for many. Five on five with up to T1 cruisers with meta modules, super cheap and not particularly complex compared to alliance tournament style teams.

I don’t know the specifics of the match but, by the write up, I presume there was no specific grid and no real time limit. More a ‘kick around in the park with friends’ than a meticulously organised event. The informality and ease of organisation of such an event would kind of lend itself to an informal league within the lowsec pirate community where pride is paramount.

It could even be done as a ‘championship belt’ type event with one team holding the title until defeated by another. This takes away the complexity of tournament brackets and organising fights, keeping track of stats and whatnot.

I don’t know, I’m just thinking out loud here but I think that would be easy to do and pretty fun for everyone involved. Thoughts?

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The twitter war

I’ve spent the last few days dying in bed with a mysterious illness. I’ve really not felt up to getting online more than a couple times so I’ve restricted my participation of this war after day 1 to fighting the proxy twitter war.
One of the reasons I like Eve is that people, to an extent, play their characters. This extends onto things like Twitter where many pilots make dedicated accounts specifically for their character. Tweetfleet is an active way to tap into the Eve community with countless players, devs and CSM members all twittering away.

I started with a little twitter propaganda by tweeting this little poster I threw together in photoshop:

Needless to say this kicked off a bit of a twitter war. I overheated my twitter module and waded into the fight. Most of it has been fairly light hearted. Witmer even wrote a nice blog as a counterpoint to my previous post which I suggest you check out: http://theraorbust.blogspot.co.uk/2015/02/aar-do-you-know-ship-you-are-flying.html

In local people have been friendly with gf’s exchanged and the standard silly smack talk that’s almost required. I’ve had not one, but two private mails from members of -ABA- saying that they are enjoying the war so far and to ‘keep up the good spirit in the war’.

In fact, the only person who seems to have taken a bit of a personal slight to the war is Mr Javix himself who has referred to us in local as ‘idiots’ and as ‘a small and relatively insignificant group of wanna-be’s’. On his blog he’s posting untruths which his own pilots tweet about knowing to be false. I’ll quote and dissect a small section to illustrate my point.

“And while I’m sure they would be the first to point out that they are ‘winning’ the war, totals right now stand at about double iskie – aprox 290m to 140m give or take. (Unless you throw in the cost of the War which means we are still ahead, 640m to 290m or so, and that 500m is every week. lolz )”
This was later tweeted by Joffy, a great SF pilot, to be greatly in error, a point Rixx ignored as it fits his anti-Bastard (not anti-ThisWar) stance.

He continues: “Which is all true. However, if we looked at straight Bastard Vs. Stay Frosty totals we are actually ahead by a nose. Y’know, if we ignored all the younglings scattered about on the floor. (We do out-number them about 5:1)”
This is a strange one to me. I’m not sure if Rixx is trying to say that the rest of A Band Apart aren’t good enough to be considered ‘fighters’, or that they’d just ‘getting in the way’. If we’re ignoring our young pilot losses then The Bastards have lost a grand total of 4 ships. However, in the Bastards we value our younger pilots and encourage them to get involved. We would never ‘discount’ their losses just because they’re newer, every loss is a learning opportunity. That our younger members have been successfully racking up kills, outnumbered and with little support is impressive and something to be commended.

More from Rixx: “And our younger combat pilots are getting a chance to fly in bigger gangs, learn station camping from our enemies, and watch as they run off unless they have the advantage.”
Again I’m a bit confused as Rixx said that they ‘learn station camping from our enemies” however it’s worth noting that the number of times The Bastards have camped a station during this war is sitting at a big fat zero. It literally has not happened. See my previous blog for stories of the Frosties camping 3 people with 18.

Finally he goes on to say rank us:

The Bastards: D-
Seriously. Just undock, fly around, and eventually we’ll catch you.”

Right now, as I write this, literally right this very second I’m sitting orbiting their station at 100km in an Omen Navy. I’ve been here, in system, most of the day. So far only one SF member has bothered to undock and try to engage. He lost an Atron a touch predictably but he then brought out a sniper Harpy and we had a fun scrap with each trying to lock the other down. Neither of us won that one but it was good fun.
A few more ABA guys logged in, up to 8 at one point so myself and Derothar decided to park ourself outside their station and announce in local we were here if they wanted to play. Two on eight, seemed fair odds. Joffy popped out a few times in his Huigin but he was alone. No one else wanted to play.

During the war time where we’ve apparently not undocked we’ve been on three frigate roams and one cruiser roam. A cruiser roam should be easy to catch, in fact we spotted a gang of SF frigs (outnumbering us approx 10 to 4) and turned the roam around to see if they wanted to fight. They avoided us completely.

Today I found out we were being called out, “Even though those two are never actually on-line or in space anywhere”, the two refers to Nashh who is currently on holiday in real life. I was a bit amused to read this considering I’ve been online in my bed a few times during the day, roaming around in my Omen Navy or frigs, I’ve been on this evening, last night and the first evening, in fact I have at least six kills to my own name in this war compared to Rixx’s single kill.

The only time I’ve actually seen Rixx undocked was when he was sitting in an Armageddon, within docking range, with two Augorors capping/repping him and a flock of armor drones on him actively. This part of the fleet of 18 against 3.

To be honest, I’ve singled this post out as I feel like every other person we’ve talked to in this war has been friendly, respectful and a good laugh. I’m a little surprised Rixx seems to be taking personal shots at people and corps for playing the game its meant to be played.

To those in ABA who’ve scrapped with us and exchanged pleasantries in local, to those who mailed us directly with nice things to say, to those who have shown mutual respect, I say thank you.

Update: it appears Rixx doesn’t like this post but has declined to specify which parts are “wrong headed assumptions based in fantasy and not reality”

This is despite my offers to update any inaccuracies.

I believe he has taken this as a personal attack rather than simply debunking his inaccurate claims about us. This is as I suggested earlier in this very post. Rixx, this offer stands. This is not personal, I wish it to be a bit of a laugh between our corps. If you post inaccurate statements about myself or The Bastards I will correct them. I will endeavour not to post anything inaccurate about your corp.

 

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The Bastards vs A Band Apart – Day 1 recap

So I thought I’d recap what has happened so far today since the war went live at 1122 this morning. Obviously I won’t write a post every day because that’d be madness and, really, who the f**k would want to read all that anyway. Maybe I’ll write a post if anything major happens, who knows. I thought I’d write one about today since the first day is usually memorable.

I was off from work today as I am ill. I decided to log in from my laptop and eve from my bed for a while. Luxury. The war had started and I spotted a bunch of -ABA- frigates on scan, eight of them to just one of just one of me so I’ll take a small gun fitted Prophecy to pew pew and tank on their station. This was cut short when they simply undocked two Griffins and some cruisers/battlecruisers instead so I left and headed back to our home station.

They followed and proceeded to set up a minor camp on the undock, a bit of good natured smack in local took place with -ABA- calling for my immediate undock. The Huginn, Ruptures, griffins, atron, thorax and caracals vs me alone. I was feeling a touch outnumbered.

I undocked my trusty Brutix Navy and let them test my tank. It became apparent I could easily tank them for the 60 seconds that it took to wait out aggression. All that I needed was for one of the frigates to wonder into my web range. This didn’t take long and, lo, the first blood of the war was drawn. And second. And third. These kills were had by simply being patient and waiting for them to make mistakes. It didn’t help I was under two or three Griffins most of the time. A Falcon did pop up once or twice too. Every so often they would miss a jam as one of the frigates was getting in close to maximise his damage. When that situation arrived, blap, tank, dock, repeat.

An hour or so later I was joined by Known Associate, also in a Brutix Navy. The -ABA- gang swelled too, adding a Vexor and a Mauler to the mix as well as another Griffin. I was informed in local that they ‘have 200 Griffins to bring’.
The extra DPS wasn’t enough to break the BNI tank and it was, again, a simple matter of waiting for them to make a mistake and get too close. First it was the Maller. Getting wise they started pulling back and brought some logi. Now we have the same ships as before plus two Augorors, one flown by Mr Javix himself. The twin logi didn’t help when one of their Vexors got too close and agressed on a neutral third party Sigil.

Despite being outnumbered 16 to 2 so far it was 5-0 Bastards, it was only fair that -ABA- got a kill. One of our Meats, a new player, undocked to take a look and was volleyed by a Rupture. He learned about alpha strikes today. Congratulations to Wild Ai who, I believe, wins 50m for first blood by an -ABA- member. I’m not sure if there will be a prize for second blood but, at time of writing, that hasn’t happened yet so there is still time to consider it.

-ABA- continued to upship, bringing a Megathron, Neut Armageddon, Vexors, Confessor, Tornado, Oracle, Brutix and (not shown) the Falcon.

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 20.33.41

It is, perhaps, worth noting, at this point we had three people. I guess we should feel flattered that -ABA- believe they require this many people. Personally I believe they are better than they give themselves credit for with this but we’ll see how this war continues. There were some more calls in local for us to stop ‘being cowards’, to undock and fight. Even if we wanted to die gloriously taking down as many as we could, this was dashed by the near permajamming. Now they had enough firepower to wear even a BNI down in less than 60 seconds so killing someone making a mistake would be harder, if possible at all now. We elected not to engage further while they had such overwhelming odds. The Geddon, piloted by Rixx, promptly plonked itself right on the undock itself and had constant reps on it from not just the two Augs but also a whole flight of heavy armor drones. Perhaps overkill. The rest of the ships retreated to 25-30km away from the undock, well out of ‘get snagged being silly’ range. They spent the next while trying, unsuccessfully, to bump us off the station. They got a few good bumps in, I’ll give them that, but none were able to push us off the docking ring.

Mr Spaxi managed to snag a lone Griffin out of range of his friends, he even got the pod. Bringing today’s score to 7-1 (or 100m to 6m).

I went to make dinner at this point and came back to find, despite being told we’d be “seeing a lot of the inside of stations” and “good luck leaving this station in the next week”, they’d gone. I’m not sure if it’s because there was now six of us online but I have suspicions.

We went out on a roam instead with a couple of cruisers which was reasonably uneventful with the highlight being a Battle Exequror kill. We did manage to run into a very large thrasher gank with ~30 Thrashers. It didn’t end well for Eito. It was fun though and today has been a good laugh. I enjoyed the challenge of fighting extremely outnumbered in a situation where I had no real advantage. My strategy was to wait patiently for the other side to make mistakes and catch them when they did. Simultaneously I had to be careful not to make any silly mistakes of my own as I would quickly lose my ship if I had.

Thanks for the fun -ABA-, I look forward to some more ❤

 

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The Bastards go to war

At #EVE_NT myself, Nashh and Lord Lazyghost had a few drinks. While mildly intoxicated we were discussing ways to generate content when the idea came up that “We should declare war on Stay Frosty!”. This, we decided, was an excellent idea.

 

Some history: About four months ago, having bled the Auner area dry over the year or so the Bastards based there we were discussing the concept of moving. One of the reasons we picked Ishomilken is that it’s convenient access to Black Rise, a pvp hotspot. Another reason was it was the home of Stay Frosty, a pirate corp lead by space-famous Rixx Javix. As pilots SF members are known to be skilled in small gang and solo PvP with a willingness to fight for pride alone, not unlike ourselves.

We decided that moving in with the Frosties would be a great scenario as, as Frenemies, we could shoot each other in the face by day and back each other up if a bigger threat came knocking. Pirates help other pirates when they’re not busy violencing each other. This happened back when the Russians tried to evict us from Auner. Local pirate corps, normally mutually -10.0, assisted us in the fight. Should some evil Russian mercs try to evict SF I, for one, would have no issues helping them. Pirates 4 lyfe bro.

By declaring war we’ve taken the gloves off both sides, boosters hugging stations now isn’t really viable. Station games become a thing, even if people have positive sec status (according to Eve Who the average sec status of The Bastards corp (-8.0) and Alliance (-4.8) compared to Stay Frosty (-2.4) and A Band Apart (-0.3) )

A band apart are also listed as having over 500 members to our less than 100. If it comes to all out blob warfare then, I’m doubtful we can win, if we try to out-number them we’d most likely lose. Where we’ll have to win is tactically. Corps like Rooks n Kings are known for fighting outnumbered, and winning, with great use of tactics and skilled pilots. I’m not saying we’re RnK, hell, this blog is called I’m Bad At Eve. We’ve given ourselves a challenge, a challenge SF is already rising to. I heard yesterday Rixx put out a CTA and already ABA pilots are flooding into Isho.

 

We’re putting our money where our mouths are on this one and I’m looking forward to it. No doubt the SF guys will bring some true ‘gud fights’ over the next while. They’ll win some, we’ll win some. In the end, it’s content, and it’s in our own backyard. What more could you want.

Stand by for some truly excellent losses in the near future.

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Awoxing, good night sweet prince

In EVE there is an activity known as Awoxing. It is named after a character, ‘Awox’ who popularised a particular style of play. Put simply, Awoxing means to join a player corporation and use the rights of being in that corporation to exploit and/or kill corpmates.

In Highsec, shooting another person who is not suspect/a criminal will get you rapidly concorded by our friendly neighbourhood space police. Shooting corpmates is excempt for this rule allowing someone to join a corp and set about killing members/assets with impunity. The fact that you can’t kick someone from corp unless they dock compounds this issue for the victims.

I, myself, have done some awoxing in the past. It was great fun, the thrill of infiltrating a corp, a wolf mascerading in highsec miners clothing. Working your way into position to strike and revealing yourself to be a dreaded awoxer, taking the assets, kills or money of those nieve enough to recruit you.

I, personally, think its a shame that awoxing is being killed off by allowing corps to disable the ‘concord won’t shoot you if you shoot your corpmates’ mechanic. I can see the benefit to CCP as many new players who join player corporations are unaware just how brutal EVE can be. That being said, hand holding them may help retain new players a little bit longer but they’ll still ahve to learn, usually the hard way, at some point.
Most people who have experienced and awox would be much more aware of it in the future. My thoughts is that, should a corp disable awoxing, there should be a manditory tax (say 10%) which goes to Concord. Spin the lore as Concord having to cover the costs of doing things they previously didn’t have to or something.

This would have a risk/reward balance as you can essentially block awoxing but at a cost. Or do you leave it as an option, risking your ships and assets for the higher returns? A decision each corp would have to make. I see scope for people to trick ‘awoxing banned’ corpmates into agressing them triggering concord/agression much like canflippers do now.

I have a couple of stories of my awoxing that are worth sharing so I’ll need to try sift through killmails and put together some words. Thoughts on the removal of awoxing?

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Fiction

Location unknown 02

Ithica groaned as he sat up, his hands flying up to his head to cradle it softly.

“Urgh.. fuck me. What in the fuck was that?” he breathed, massaging his temples in a bid to ease the throbbing pain behind his eyes. Ithica hadn’t felt this bad since the last corp ransom party. They’d snagged a passing trader and convinced the terrified pilot that his cargo of beer and spirits would be much better off in the hand of the pirates than in the hold of such a ship. The trader, strangely, had also agreed. Quite vigorously in fact.

When he went on his way, cargohold empty, Ithica and his fellow pirates proceded to insist on sampling all the exotic drinks. After all, they were moral pirates and couldn’t live with the guilt of selling on poisoned beverages.

That night they made sure that every bottle was safe to drink however, in the morning, Ithica wasn’t so sure. He crawled to his quarters and stuck his head under the pillow until those assholes on the bridge stopped making the station spin so much.

Ithica squeezed his temples and gritted his teeth as the pain ebbed away. Opening his eyes he stared around him at his surroundings.

He appeared to be in some sort of holding cell based on the decor and the titanium chain clamped around his ankle. Ithica pulled his leg against the chain a few times but it didn’t give at all.

He humpfed as he slouched back against the wall.

The room was bland, featureless and grey. As if someone just hollowed a cube out of dull metal and put a door in it. The door was the only feature of the room that differed. It was also grey, however, it was a different shade of grey.

“Wonderful”, said Ithica wondering who he’d pissed off this time, “just wonderful”.

Just as Ithica was in the middle of trying to see if he could squeeze his ankle through the shackles the door slid open with a quiet hiss. He glanced up at the door as a figure strolled in.

He appeared to be around 40 to 50 years old with thin greying hair and wrinkles around his eyes. The man had a kind face but his eyes were anything but. Clenching a stun gun in his hand he stepped into the centre of the room, stopping a few paces short of Ithica, who was currently eyeing the stun-gun suspiciously whilst working out if he had a play.

“Who are you?” the man exclaimed, “What are you doing here? How did you get here? Explain yourself!” he gesticulated wildly with the weapon, a bead of sweat working its way down the mans forehead.

Ithica tried to stand up but his head had different ideas. He crumpled back down and tried to make it look like that was what he intended all along.

“Listen here, who the hell are you? Why am I here?” Where the fuck is here?!”

“Don’t play games with me, you know exactly where you are!”, the man stepped forward, weapon aimed at Ithica.

“Woah, listen here, old man. I don’t know what you’re talking about. I was just flying along through Black Rise when *poof* I woke up in some reanimation chamber in this god damned station.”

“Lies!” hissed the man, “You’re here to spy on us, to stop us!”

“I don’t know who the hell you are, why would I spy on you!?” Ithica  said with a raising voice, “I’m not interested in your affairs so long as they don’t interfere with mine”

A flicker of doubt flashed across the mans eyes as he span round and strode out of the room, door hissing shut behind him.

Ithica realised he’d tensed up and the pull of the shackles was hurting him. He relaxed and took a series of slow breaths as he considered how much shit he appeared to be in.

—-

“Damnit Dwaigon”, sighed Murrdurr, “How many times to I have to tell you, don’t call me that!”

“Call you what? Your actual name?”

“Yes, just call me Murrdurr”

“Jeez, fine. Whatever Rence, sorry, ‘Murrdurr'” Dwaigon sniggered while making air quotes around the name.

Murrdurr rubbed his temples with a pained expression on his face.  He’d been a graduate from the prestigious State War Academy of the Caldari State, one of the best in his class. The aptitude tests had placed him into the logistics specialist stream where he’d received advanced training in the piloting of the specialist ships the Navy used to support their fleets during the war against the Gallente Federation.

Murrdurr was trained to operate these ships during fleet warfare, ensuring the survival of his fleet even under overwhelming odds.

He’d trained in a series of Osprey class logistics cruisers in a series of escalating wargames receiving commendations from his tutors and instructors. He was one of the first trainees to be granted pod time in a Basilisk and, according to his instructors, flew it to fine effect.

Upon graduation he was touted to be a shoe-in for the carrier program in a few months. That is, until the incident.

After the graduation ceremony Murrdurr and his fellow newly minted officers went out to celebrate. He’d got absolutely blind drunk on all sorts of exotic spirits. They’d been pounding shot after shot all evening, slapping each other on the back and guffawing loudly when someone had to make a dash to the nearest toilets, hand clapped firmly over mouth.

At some point he’d met ‘her’. He didn’t even know her, not that it’d have been real. She was stunning. Everything about her. Her eyes had glistened as she made eye contact with him across the bar. Her body was incredible and she clearly knew it, showing it off with a tight dress cut in just the right places to leave little to the imagination.

She’d had him over her little finger from the start. They went back to the dorms but she’d wanted to go somewhere more private. Drunk, eager to show off and not thinking with the right head he’d taken her and snuck her past security into the Navy docks and onto the biggest ship he had access to, a Navy Raven class battleship where the graduation ceremony had taken place earlier that day.

Next thing Murrdurr knew he woke up in a rejuvination bay with armed soldiers surrounding him and a very pissed off Admiral.

She’d been a Gallente agent, they said. Once he’d given her access to the ship she locked it down, turned the weapons systems on neighbouring berthed warships and activated the self destruct.

Twenty cruiser class ships and three battleships were destroyed by the missiles and the exploding ship.

Facing court martial he’d ran. He’d survived as a mercenary for hire for the defence fleets against incursions of Sansha’s nation into empire space. His training in the logistics ships came in handy. The Navy almost caught him once, prompting him to come up with a pseudonym and change his appearance.

The money was good but he hated the people, they were almost as bad as the military types he’d thought he’d left behind. Eventually, when moving through a dangerous area of space, he’d witnessed a gang of pirates attacking a lone industrial ship. Murrdurr been about to move along when the backup landed. A trap set for the now struggling pirates.

In his logistics cruiser he’d opened a communications channel with the pirates.

“Who the fuck are you?” came the reply

“Just a passer by, looks like you’re in trouble”

“Nothing we can’t handle”, said Ithica Hawk as the first of the pirate ships exploded. The swarm of drones Murrdurr could now see rapidly shifted onto another of the pirates.

“Doesn’t look that way to me. I’ll help you but I want a share of the loot”

The second pirate ship exploded leaving just four remaining.

“Fuck. Alright, deal whoever you are. If you doublecross us we’ll kill you”

Murrdurr cut the comms channel, locked up the remaning pirates and activated the remote shield transfer modules fitted to his ship.

With their shields being regenerated by the Scimitar class ship the pirates had been able to hold the field and pick off the hostiles one by one.

As the last hostile went down Murrdurr noticed his warp drive was offline.

His neocom flashed up indicating that the Ithica Hawk was opening a communication channel with him.

That had been how Murrdurr had first met the lowlife pirates and it wasn’t long until he was one of them too. After all, even criminals need logistics support.

Now here he was sitting in a station with Dwaigon waiting on Ithica who was supposed to have been here already.

“Where is he, do you know?” Murrdurr asked.

“No clue, he’s usually not this late. He’s an asshole but he’s a punctual asshole” Dwaigon said.

“Hmm, he’s not answering any messages. Have you tried contacting one of those locator agents?”

“Yeah, just there actually. Waiting to hear back.. wait, mail just arrived”

Dwaigon opened the mail on the desktop screen. Both pirates leant in to see the result, which wasn’t what they expected.

Ithica Hawk had vanished.   

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