Genesis Region – Mih Constellation
Serren System – Planet III
3 May YC 122
Having returned to scanning I quite soon pinned down a wormhole and warped to its location to check where it led. As Neocom showed its description, both Aura and I gasped – it was a wormhole to Thera! You probably know that my corp maintains a publicly available list of Thera connections but I never used it because I wanted to find that system myself. And finally I did!
C-R00015 Region – C-C00147 Constellation
31 March YC 122
After my unfortunate attempt to appropriate an unanchored starbase I continued my travels through Anoikis. The intent was the same – maintain caches and make money from exploration sites. Jumping through a near-dead wormhole I found myself in Class 3 system J132907. Having tended the cache and parked Nosuri at a safe spot, I opened the probe window and gasped.
Derelik Region – Oraron Constellation
25 March YC 122
Jarizza had just two signatures – one of them was a wormhole and another was Crumbling Sansha Antiquated Outpost.
“What do you think, Aura?” asked I, “Should we go straight to the wormhole or check out that relic site first?”
“Hi-sec relic sites are a waste of time,” replied she. “Even data sites are more profitable here. I would jump through the hole.”
“Yeah, that’s true. On the other hand, we haven’t had much luck in Anoikis. This may not be the most lucrative mission but at least it will pay for that Gallentean sparkling. Besides, I’ve never seen a Sansha outpost.”
“Oh, this one is crumbling and antiquated. If you want to see a real one I can get you in touch with a Sansha agent,” winked Aura.
“No, thank you. I am afraid I am not ready to bend the knee before Master Kuvakei. This individuality thing, you know, still possesses a certain attraction for me.” Continue reading “An Invisible Enemy”
The last few days I spent jumping from one Anoikis system to another. To my surprise the journey was uneventful in all respects.
For one thing, no one killed me or even tried to. There were no gate camps and no bubbles but even without them entering a new J-space system was one of the most dangerous parts of a journey through Anoikis. That was where I had to appear ‘naked’, without a cloak, even if for the briefest of moments. And it took me some time, after my initial underwhelming performance, to make sure that that moment was indeed the briefest. Eventually I settled into a routine which was done almost automatically: bookmark the wormhole exit, bring up the system map, choose a celestial, start the warp and activate the cloaking device. All that took less that 15 seconds, so I never lost my gate cloak until I started moving, and after that the CovOps cloaking device made sure that my Buzzard flashed its tender flesh for less than a second. If there were any wannabe hunters, they would have had hard time even acquiring a target lock on me, to say nothing about attacking.
Being not just a traveller but an explorer I was also exposed to a potential assault while I was hacking containers at data and relic sites but that risk too did not materialise. That could probably be explained by an interesting (or, depending on your point of view, boring) fact – I didn’t see many pirate exploration sites where I could have been ambushed. By the way, Aura and I had finally figured out the classification of Anoikis cosmic signatures – if a site had a pirate faction included in its name then it was an unguarded remainder of their base; if a faction was not mentioned, then, no matter how innocent the name sounded, it was a Sleeper camp defended by an armada of bloodthirsty drones. So it happened that most relic and data sites I found were those ‘unprotected’ and ‘forgotten’ Sleeper bases which I, naturally, avoided. Continue reading “Day Job”
Anoikis – Region B-R00005
Constellation B-C00037 – System J150859
Cosmic Signature SEZ-118 – Central Angel Sparking Transmitter
16 March YC 122
After uncloaking I kind of froze, scared to look away from the overview where I expected to see an Astero any second now. I stared at the overview, then ran D-scan, checked overview again, and another D-scan, rotated the camera drones to visually check the surroundings, back to overview… Seconds dropped one by one and morphed into minutes, and I was still waiting, waiting for…
“Boo!” suddenly said Aura.
If I wasn’t suspended in pod goo I would probably jump and injure myself. In reality, I thrashed my arms and legs wildly as if I was drowning, which apparently was entertaining to behold, as Aura laughed heartily.
I’ve stopped my attempts to break out of the capsule and asked indignantly, “Why would you do that? You nearly gave me a heart attack!”
Still snickering, Aura replied, “You should have seen yourself. You looked like a cat who spent all his life in a safety of an apartment and then was suddenly kicked out to the big scary outdoors.” Continue reading “The Big Scary Outdoors”
The Forge Region – Okkelen Constellation
10 September YC 121
Finally, my fitting skills allowed me to mount and activate all modules required to explore a Standard Sleeper Cache. Feeling enthusiastic, I set out to explore another constellation in The Forge, Okkelen. The start was unremarkable; the first five systems I visited – Ishisomo, Airmia, Sakkikainen, Vahunomi and Friggi – each had one or two signatures which turned out to be either a wormhole, a pirate base or a gas site. As I was not equipped to visit any such sites, my frustration was growing with each scan. It reached the boiling point in Otitoh – the system contained 8 signatures and each bloody one was a pirate base.
Disgusted with the scale of pirate infestation, I muttered, “I wish I had my Cormorant with me. I would clean out that scum.”
“Hehe,” chuckled Aura. “It doesn’t fit into the cargo hold, does it?”
Half a month later I was still unable to fit my Heron for Standard Sleeper Cache exploration. Apparently, I had miscalculated the reduction of powergrid usage expected from improved engineering skills – it was still 1.6 MW over the limit. Replacing the afterburner with a less power-hungry model decreased the energy consumption only by 1 MW. From that point I had a few choices. Continue reading “Rubble and Debris”
After dispatching the arrogant narco pusher my mood, and appetite, had markedly improved. I returned to the station and had a hearty breakfast which completely reconciled me with the cruel world. Ready to continue exploration of The Forge I boarded the capsule and woke up Aura.
“Good morning, darling. I have good news…” started I but the words got stuck in my throat and my jaw dropped when I saw Aura’s image.
She looked at me demurely and asked, “You don’t like it?”
The Forge Region – Kimotoro Constellation
6 August YC 121
Kisogo was surprisingly populated for a cul-de-sac – there were 47 capsuleers in the local channel. Having checked the overview, I discovered the reason for such popularity – just like Uitra this system was home for another State War Academy Station. I thought that most of them were students and D-scan confirmed my guess revealing an inordinate number of Ibises in space.
Having established a safe spot, I opened a probe scanner window and whistled, “Look, Aura, there are three signatures here!”
With a mien of a woman of the world, Aura snorted, “Wormholes. The locals would have cleaned out all other sites as soon as they appeared.”
“Well, as you said in Urlen, you never know your luck. I am ready to try mine.”
Aura made a grimace which was a mimical equivalent of “Whatever”.
From Jita we travelled to Uitra where I needed to pick up some stuff which I left behind after moving the base to Poinen. Having loaded everything into the cargo hold, I asked Aura, “Which constellation shall we explore next?”
Aura looked at the map and said, “Kimotoro?”
“Kimotoro? We’ve just returned from it. And in any case, I expect all signatures in the vicinity of Jita will be swept clean.”
“You never know your luck,” winked Aura. “Besides, we’ll have to explore it sooner or later. Currently, it is the closest unexplored constellation in The Forge, so why not now?”
I didn’t really have any strong objections so we made our way to Urlen. There were two signatures the first of which turned out to be a wormhole.