Hours later, I am done sucking gas in a C4 that connected up to our system. My thought is to head back out to lowsec and check out those nice sites. It's now 10:00 in the USA, so hopefully all those Euros are in bed. I get into Nosey, my exploration Tengu, and cross into C3.
A routine dscan, and my plans change. Sleeper wrecks. Hmm. I quickly recon the system, and find two guys running a sleeper site in the inner system. Now I bookmark all anoms, and warp into the site. It's a Proteus and a Gila. There are still a few sleepers left, which they are killing. I have a bit of time. So I think it's time to ditch Nosey, which is expensive, and get my Manticore. I warp out, cross, warp to my POS, and refit. Then warp back, and cross again. And back to the site.
I am greeted with a new tableau: the Proteus and Gila are still there, along with a Dragoon which shows on dscan as "Salvager". Is a Dragoon a destroyer? I look it up: yes. He is salvaging with salvager drones. Novel. He already has cleaned the site pretty well, but there are several more wrecks to go. Of course, I am not attacking with his friends there. I head back to make a perch. Let's see if they make a mistake.
|watching from my perch|
I watch a bit longer. There are only three wrecks left. I am surprised at how efficiently the destroyer is tractoring things. And then I see him tractor something that has to be 50km away! WTF?? Well, it is the second to last wreck. Since you cannot warp to things-being-tractored, I take my chance and warp to 20 from the last wreck. I figure he will have to get within 20 (24 max) to be in tractor range. He will come to me.
I zoom up. Now that I am close, I see what is happening. He has deployed a mobile tractor, and I have not seen it in the scrum of wrecks and him. And of course the tractor is a new module with Rubicon, and I have not realized until now that I do not have it showing on my overview. (I fix that now.) Well, that explains his seemingly huge tractor range. But, it also puts him 50km from me. I cannot slowboat that in time.
I think fast, then bookmark the tractor and bounce off the nearest celestial. I warp back in at 10. It looks perfect: the last wreck is rapidly approaching. His drones are out on it. At I am at 11 km. I close to 9, then set my orbit around him at 1000m. Then I decloak and get my systems active. My torps crash into him. Shields down in two cycles. Then armor in two more, and finally two more into structure. The whole time I am watching dscan like a hawk. But the Gila and Proteus do not appear.
|my loot, sadly diminished|
Oh well. Fearing reprisal, I cloak and move off 20km and watch. Dscan is clear. After about a minute, I decide to go look for them in the outer system. I warp out there. There are some sleeper wrecks, but no ships. Maybe they fled? I warp back to the ambush site. Well, that tractor has MY LOOT in it, and I wants it, oh yes! Time to kill the tractor. I set an orbit at 20km, then uncloak and start shooting. Dscan remains clear. The tractor goes down pretty quickly: boom. OK: what's it got?
Well, I get a bit of loot. But really not what I had hoped for. You can see in the killmails almost all the value got blown up. The Dragoon had 107m worth of stuff; it dropped 33m. Then the tractor had 80m, and dropped 12m. (I was seriously screwed by the loot fairy.)
|every POS needs one|
|via zephyr express|
|sleepers that are not shooting at me|
Lesson learned: when trying to kill a salvaging ship who has a deployed tractor nearby, try to do it when the tractor is just grabbing a distant wreck. Otherwise, you risk having your loot stolen by it.
I never did make it back out to lowsec.