I log onto EVE, as usual, and check the system. A few new sigs, and of course the old static is gone. I deploy probes, then check around the system. Nobody. I scan. Quickly I have the two new sigs. One is a K162 from C4; I dub that C4c. The other is our static. I explore C4c first.
Dscan shows towers and a fair number of ships. Hmm. Well, maybe they are not manned. I check the outer system. More ships, including an Epithal! That's worth searching for. I find the tower, and the ships are manned. But the Epithal gets into something else, so, nothing happening there. There's one more planet I have not seen yet, and it also has a tower.
This system is a bit too hot for my liking, and no obvious gankables. Let's check downstream instead. I warp to the wormhole, and dscan just as I am jumping out. Another Epithal! Oh well, forget it. I am polarized and not heading back. I warp to our static.
The wormhole chain downstream is sadly uninteresting. C4b connects to C4c. It has a C3 static, but the static is EOL. There's also a C5, which I explore. C4c is its static; it has one other connection, to null. I head out to null. (Which is completely empty. You can see how many people are in system out there!) The null system connects to C5b and C5c. Nothing happening anywhere.
Somewhere in there, I get a mail notification. Someone has dropped the shield on my undefended tower I use for gas processing. Down to 99%. Hmm. I figure it's the neighbors in C4c trying to goad me into a fight. But I ignore since I am the only one online, and I figure it's probably just one guy. Anyway that's what the message looks like. (I get a text from Jayne: the new update is taking him forever to load. He'll be on eventually.)
I explore back up the chain, even taking a look into C3a through the EOL wormhole. Nothing happening everywhere. Finally I get back into my system. I dscan.
Lots of ships on scan. Marauders, battleships, a Drake, others. What are they doing? My first thought is they running our anoms. I look around at the anoms, and they are not there. Then I realize they might be attacking my gas-processing tower. I point at it, and I am right. I warp over for a look. There they are all right, seriously bludgeoning away. The attacking corp is The Night Crew, of The Night Crew Alliance. Most of them are Night Crew but there is at least one from a sister corp. They have 138 members, and presumably their alliance has more.
This is bad, but not awful. I will just have to move out everything of value, which is not much. A bunch of gas, and some processed hybrid goop. The whole tower is designed to be taken down when I don't have gas to process.
I am worried, though, about them using an Onyx to trap me, just as we trapped that carrier. So, I start working up some off-grid bookmarks. Probably should have done that earlier, but then I have never been too serious about security.
Finally Jayne gets in, and Timmay at about the same time. OK, now we have more eyes. We're set. We start shuttling stuff back from the gas tower to our home tower. The enemy attempts to stop us using their Onyx, but we are only warping direct when we can see it is clear. When it blocks us, we warp indirect. So, I offline and unanchor all the parts. Timmay scoops them and hauls them home. I grab all the gas in a Miasmos.
I forget to consider the stront until it is too late. The shield just pass 50% when we get more over. Our stront is just 2 hours worth. Oh well, didn't want that large tower anyway.
The enemy grinds it down, as we think about options to attack them. Problem is, their battle blob is 11 guys on grid, mostly in Marauders. We know they also have some light tackle around, and I have seen a Tengu prober. And if they operate sanely, we know there are others, too, cloaked out there. Numbers do not favor us here. We might use our capitals, but that is a lot to risk and I don't see it working anyway. Just as we swarmed that guy two days ago, we'd be swarmed. These guys seem to know what they are doing.
They reinforce the tower. Now we wait. Maybe they will go home? Their wormhole is below half... as it is I cannot think they are going to get them all back.
They are not planning to go back. Instead they start in our home tower.
Our tower is an ECM-based dickstar. Lots of ECMs, just enough guns and other offensive modules that maybe we can hurt people a bit, and casual hanging about is discouraged. This was a decent design when I put it up. But it is not any more. Marauders even in relatively small numbers can easily defeat it with bastion mode. I apologize to my corpmates: that's a big fail right there. My fault.
Anyway, all that becomes evident to me almost in a flash. They are not stopping. They are going to burn us out. (Parenthetically I must congratulate them on seeing our weakness and pouncing. One of them is already crowing in the last thread, so I guess at least one of them reads me. Perhaps we will eventually know if this was a spur of the moment thing or if they have been hunting my corp for a while.)
Again we have a debate about deploying the capitals. But as I try to make clear, when you die in a fire in wspace, you don't get to return to the fight. Tonight we have no access at all, except for deep deep nullsec. Any attack is going to be one and out. We need to spend this time "battening down the hatches", as it were. We will lose access to our storage. So everything must be moved out of storage and placed somewhere.
We load planet goop into Epithals, gas in Miasmos, and random crap into Orcas. Then we log our PI alts, get in those ships, and carefully warp out to safespots and cloak. The enemy has combat probes out that are getting close a lot of these times. They get in two probers, but it's a pretty large system and they don't evidently get any 100% hits in time. These alts won't be logging in again. So much for our PI. But that's the least of our concerns.
I make a run at the enemy wormhole after refitting my Tengu with a 100mn afterburner. They've got an interceptor on the other side. I immediately cross back and it crosses to pin me. Their Onyx lands on grid with several other T2s and T3. They've got me. I am going to die.
But must try! I burn out of the Onyx's bubble via the magic of overheated 100mn, and drive off the light tackler with missiles, and then escape into warp just as my shields were about down. Whoa, I did not die! That was much too close. OK, I won't try that again.
By this time, it's very late for us. Hiljah has logged on, but even though a good DIAF would be brief, getting set for it will take a while. We need to agree on our comp, and shuffle around parts. I am not staying up even one more hour for this -- I work, as do all of us. So, we log out. (The siege goes on through the night. The Night Crew earn their name.)
Sleep is hard coming. We're about to lose $100 or whatever of spaceship pixels. Put that way, it does not seem very serious. Didn't want them anyway. But EVE, it is real. It's not $100 we are losing; that's not real. It's a home we've spent months in. It's a place we care about, a lifestyle we were having fun in, and we thought quite successfully. All that is about to change. There are other lifestyles in EVE. I guess it is time to go do something else. Didn't want that... ah, forget it.
I log in my alt today, and he warps into the tower among bubblewrap.
At this point, it appears there is little we can do. (As I write they've not yet reinforced the tower; it's just gone below 50%.) We will try to blow up their bubblewrap and/or rep up our stuff, but they will most likely stop us. Then I will blow up all the ships of value, or get killed trying to sneak them out. We'll die in a fire and can't get back in. (Or perhaps prevail. Must try.) They will blow up the tower. So it goes. One day in EVE you're on top the world. You got a capital kill! First! The next day in EVE, you're crushed. You are the capital kill. Looks like it's my turn.