Sunday, February 9, 2014

In pirates I trust

It was time to get back home. Nice low sec connection with just several jumps from high sec was going to make it rather easy and fast. Lowsec is usually an interesting place, full of pirates and blood thirsty people that will go out of their way to get you. Nevertheless, for me it feels like home. I feel less anxious when flying in low sec, than high sec.

Traveling through low sec

I jump through to the first LS system and immediately notice few guys in local with their suspect timers. Not too many people in local, about 5 or 6, but blinky status means some sort of hostile activity recently took place. Interesting. I do a background check and it turns out some small russian corp, shooting helpless travelers. Next jump shows a bit more scary local, with 12+ people, but all from different corps, none from the russian corp though. I have no idea if these guys have some sort of positive standings and if I should expect more trouble than  from one corp, but it doesn't matter. I want to have some fun.

I stick around, fly a bit. See random proteus and an abbadon on scan. Looks like they docked up to station again. I also see a falcon and an arazu lighting cyno for a carrier. All guys from the same corp. Still, that's only 5 people. And they can't drop a carrier in the same system. I decide to go for it. Land with my domies on the gate, stick around and give their scout enough time to notice me on the gate. After a minute there's still no activity. I think I should not have warped all my ships at the same time. It might look a bit too much to chew. Anyway, as getting home was my original plan so I jump through and proceed traveling to the end system, my WH exit.

Travel seems to go without any issues. Even with such slow warps for battleships I manage to get to the last system safe and sound. I leave my scout behind to scan the system, perhaps to find some targets for later shooting. As soon as my domies jump to connecting null and warps home I see 2 hostile ships land, with flashy characters that are from the corp I was trying to "bait". I guess they woke up a bit too late and tried to catch up with me. Well, that was unexpected. Had I known I would have waited to give them a proper welcome, but the game is not over yet.

Have a pirate to catch a pirate

Seeing as I "escaped", pirates do not stick around too much and go back to their home system. Meanwhile I send out a ping to whoever is on and gather the fleet. This could escalate nicely. Since they had few ships and a carrier, this might get interesting. I get my scout back to first LS system and watch, with hope to see an active camp or some gate action, while fleet still waits on the wormhole. After a little bit of waiting, nothing happens, so I decide to take this to the next level. I order fleet to jump and we go towards that lowsec system.

Fortunately there are 2 "side systems" which are empty that we can use in order to "hide" from local. However, we must pass the "active" system with 12+ local. We try to be as fast as we can and hope that we do not get reported into some joint local intel channel. We get to one of the empty systems and start camping the gate while I proceed and jump in with my proteus to do some fishing.

Now as an ex pirate, I think I have a good feeling what to expect. Pirates won't engage me in a "fair" fight, so they have to be confident that they can kill me or atleast be able to get out if things go south. I come to system and go straight for high sec, don't mind me, just doing casual business traveling. Take out my alt out of system as he has been there too long and probably became "too suspicious". Local is clean. In a couple of minutes, I come back with my proteus, linger on the high sec gate and jump in. Unfortunately noone is there to greet me. Perhaps I was too fast as I see a proteus undock and an abaddon on scan. I warp to station to see whats up. Sure enough I see the ship standing on station. Meanwhile I see their scouts jumping in and out to the system with a lot of neutrals. Surely they are checking for a backup fleet or something. I keep ordering my fleet to warp between two systems as I have no idea whether they will decide to check our system and if so, from where.

Meanwhile abbadon proceeds to engage me. Game is on! I guess they feel quite confident about me now. Time to get this party started. I dock and undock, to see abbadon 300km away losing sentry aggro. I quickly use this time to "escape" and warp to the gate where I saw their proteus. Sure enough, when I land I see it, at least 10km from the gate, now together with the loki. This is it, I get my weapons hot and get tackled before I tackle him back. I order my fleet to jump and warp to me. Unfortunately, local spike is noticed and loki gets away, while proteus stays scrammed and webbed. Soon fleet lands and we make a short order of the ship.

Seems loot fairy was not in the mood today, but we take what we get. In the end, a kill is a kill . It did not escalate as I have hoped for and perhaps sending only second tackle first, before jumping all the fleet in, would have netted us also a loki kill, but hunt is a success and t3 is always a nice prize to have.

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