Caching Up

Genesis Region – Mih Constellation
Zoohen System – Planet III
Theology Council Tribunal

21 April YC 122

I stood in a hangar looking at a group of objects delivered to me today. Despite Aura’s scepticism both my photos actually made it to the podium – a second place for the capsule and a third place for the corpse – and today I received the prizes.

“Hmm…” said Aura, trying to look unimpressed. “So what have you got?”

I walked to three large boxes in the corner.

“Firstly, there is a Buzzard…” I started saying.

Aura scoffed interrupting me, “Ha, charges to charges.”

I smiled, “Yeah, you are right. In my line of work CovOps frigates are just consumables. Still, one less trip to Jita.”

“What are those?” asked Aura pointing at the other two containers.

“Succubus and Cruor, prizes for the capsule shot.”

There was a stunned pause. Then Aura cleared her throat and read out, “Succubus is one of the most feared frigates ever to harrow the spacelanes and asteroid belts of civilized space… Shaped like a leech, the Cruor presents a fitting metaphor for the Blood Raiders’ philosophy… Did I hear it right, you received two pirate frigates as prizes from a corp which prides itself on its snuggly status on the killboard?”

“Erm… Yes.”

“And what do they think you are going to do with them?”

I shrugged, “Dunno. Tend caches?”

It was one of those moments when we looked at each other silently, sparkles glinting in our eyes, and then simultaneously exploded in laughter. We were laughing so hard that my belly started to ache and Aura’s hologram got fuzzy.

“Tell… tell you corp mates, I like their sense of humour,” said Aura through convulsions, wiping tears from her eyes. “And that capsule prank, although it scared me silly, was totally worth it.”

“Yeah, each of these frigates is more expensive than the Buzzard.”

“No, I mean I’ve never had such a good laugh. You can’t buy that! Okay, what else have you got?”

“There must be a suit of clothes somewhere. Oh, there it is,” replied I pulling a package stuck between two frigate containers. “It’s called Polar Aurora Exploration Suit.”

“Well, I can imagine why you would choose exploration apparel, but Polar Aurora? That’s planetside. You aren’t going to retire from space, are you?”

“No, no. I’ll wear it in the station. I chose it just because I thought I’d look cool in it.”

Aura giggled, “If it’s really intended for polar exploration you will probably look, and feel, hot in it.”

“I don’t mind that too,” winked I. “By the way, it’s not all. I was also given a choice of SKINs.”

“For a Buzzard?”

“No, unfortunately, there weren’t SKINs for it so I chose Glacial Drift for Griffin, Zento Isideko Combine for Cormorant and Spirit for Nereus.”

Aura frowned, “Cormorant, that I understand – our old Merimetso needs a bit of decoration. You don’t fly Griffin but at least it’s a Caldari ship. But why would you choose a SKIN for Gallente industrial?”

“Oh, that’s not for me. It’s a gift for a friend.”

“What friend?”

I smirked, “Honestly, Aura, you are not that thick. Doesn’t a combination of ‘Nereus’ and ‘spirit’ in one phrase give you a hint?”

“Ah,” Aura rolled her eyes, “that friend!”

“Yes, that friend. And he totally deserves it as he helped me to acquire Tender Nosuri and didn’t take any money for transportation.”

“Okay, fair enough, I’ll contract it to him. Done. Okay, now that the games are out of the way, what are we going to do next?”

“I don’t know about you, but I am going to celebrate!” smiled I. “And I know one person who would gladly keep me company.”

Aura shook her head ruefully, “That friend…”

“Wanna join us?” asked I.

“Nah, thanks. Have fun. And send my regards to Mr Albaf,” said Aura and went offline.

3 May YC 122

Let’s make it clear – I didn’t spend all this time from 21 April carousing with Yakub; I just decided to take a break from corp activities and do something different. In fact, I was writing a story. A reader of this blog might observe that it’s not too different from what I do on a regular basis, and I would agree with that. Still, blog posts are like documentaries while this time I wrote a completely fictional account. Took me quite a while as I discovered that writing a believable story required a lot of effort – from breaking writer’s block to restraining overactive imagination. After a few torturous days I produced a 5000-word piece named The Lesser of Evils. I wasn’t too happy with the result but was too exhausted to do anything about it. So I published the story on the website and also submitted it to YC 122 New Eden Capsuleer’s Writing Contest. Fingers crossed.

Also, during that period I arranged delivery of five Griffin-class frigates to Zoohen.

“Why do you need them?” wondered Aura. “Do you plan to leave Signal Cartel and open a corp specialising in e-war services? Or did you buy them just because you now have a useless Griffin SKIN?”

“You are thinking in the right direction but you reversed the cause and the effect. One reason why I chose a Griffin SKIN was because I anticipated using it on a Griffin in a Hugs Fleet,” explained I.

“Hugs Fleet? Like a bear hug?”

“No, like a friend’s hug. I know the name isn’t exactly intuitive but that’s what we call a fleet which attacks other players with fireworks.”

“Why would you do that?” asked Aura, looking confused.

“Just for fun. If you remember, this was pretty much the main reason why I joined the corp. And now I finally have an opportunity to participate in such fleet!”

“Okay, I’ve got it – you like fireworks. But why an ECM frigate?”

“Ah, you see, some of the usual recipients of hugs are our war targets. For some reason those guys don’t like fireworks and try to stop us by destroying our ships. We, in turn, to prolong the fun target those spoilsports with ECM jammers. In the end we all die, but at least we have brought some joy and beauty to this dull world.”

“If you ask me, it’s a waste of a good frigate,” commented Aura the Practical.

“Every fun has its price,” retorted I.

As if responding to Aura’s concerns about the waste of ships, the fleet didn’t go to plan. Instead of flying in search of war targets and other dangerous encounters we stayed put in Zoohen because the management decided to honour some visiting dignitaries with fireworks. I didn’t mind either way, as I was in for the views and it didn’t matter who was on the receiving end of our hugs. The spectacle was breathtaking but I noticed that my cheap copper and barium party poppers did not contribute much to the show. A note to myself – don’t save on fireworks, you penny-pincher!

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