Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Passing at my Static

It's the weekend.  Yesterday Jeedmo got himself stuck out, when a wormhole closed rather unexpectedly sooner than expected.  So today I am scanning out, looking for highsec.

I find our static, which will be a C4.  I jump through, in my Manticore just in case there is someone there that's gankable.  Nobody around, though.  I scan the system down.  It has a C3 static, which is good news for getting people in.  But the static is EOL.  Magic 8-ball says: try again later.  OK, I set up a listening picket on the wormhole, then do other stuff for a while.

After only about an hour, I hear the zluuurrrp! noise of a wormhole going away.  I raise my window, and sure enough, gone.  Not a bad wait.  Now I scan down the new wormhole, and warp to it.  Crossing into C3a finds a system with just four sigs and one anom.  Nicely kept; thanks guys.  The system has a highsec exit.  Perfect for my purposes.  The sigs are a gas site, a relics, and two wormholes.  There's a nullsec, and finally the highsec static.  I pop out into highsec, mark the wormhole, then tell Jeedmo.  He'll be back this way eventually.

Meanwhile, I notice there's a ghost site in the highsec system I landed in.  Well, that's worth something if I can get there in time.  So I head back into wspace, risking polarization.  Nobody around.  I warp back up the chain to home, and reship into my ghostbusting Tengu.  Then back down the chain, and out into highsec.  Is the site still here?  Yes.  (Surprisingly, people do not seem to do these sites very fast in highsec.)  I warp to the site, then smash through it quite rapidly.  One can has nothing in it, but I fly to it after getting the other three just to see if there would be time.  I get to it, and crack it quickly, then warp off just as the Serpentis show up.  Ha ha.  I score two blueprints.

Since I am in the ship anyway, and I have a nullsec exit, I figure I am fated to do ghostbusting tonight.  So out to null I go.  I am out in Esoteria.  There is no loop I can exploit, which is unfavorable.  But there are multiple cul-de-sacs, several with zero jumps and some more with just a handful.

The situation looks great, but I have little luck.  I explore fifty-eight systems, most of them twice, finding just one site in which I get little time before the enemy shows and blows the can I am at.  Nice implant, poof.  Oh well.  Nothing interesting happens in the rest of the run, just a lot of warping and no finding.  Sometimes ghostbusting is like that.

One of these things is not like the others.
It's getting late by the time I head back into wspace.  I just into C3a, then dscan as always.  Nothing interesting.  I cross to C4b; again nothing interesting.  Then into my home system.  I dscan as always, and this time I do see something quite unexpected: a pod.  Nothing else is on scan, aside from customs offices.  So why is there a pod in my system?

A quick check of the probe scanner shows that there are no new sigs.  So, he must have lost a ship here.  Probably lost to my wicked decloak trap.  OK, so he will be headed out -- right to me.  In fact he must already be in warp, since my tower is not in range.  Just as I am making these deductions, the pod warps onto grid with me.  Naturally, I start trying to lock it to kill it.  It lingers briefly at the wormhole, and I cannot lock.  Why?  Oh, my gate cloak (duh).  I double-click to drop cloak, and try to lock, but the pod jumps.

I'll be polarized and the chance to get it is poor.  Still, I jump too.  Then I drop cloak hastily, but this time the pod does not linger.  It warps.  I warp to the wormhole to C3a, hoping to get one or two more shots at it.  But either it beat me here and jumped already (I don't think so), or it did not go this way.

I check the scanner.  Ah, there's a new sig here in C4b since I was here earlier this evening.  Since I am here for five minutes anyway, I scan it down.  Wormhole, to C2.  That's where he went.

My five minutes are up, so I head home.  Warping to my tower shows the expected wreck.  (Here's the kill.)
Almost out.
The kill happened not in range of any of my objects or in the warp bubble's volume, so I imagine that he was trying to microwarp clear when he got locked.  He was probably this close to warping...

I swap ships to get a Coercer salvager, then bounce off a perch to get the loot.  A nice set of Sisters probes.
I can only imagine what poor Eddie Pollard thought was happening.  He blunders into my trap and gets killed, then as he heads out he is jumped at the wormhole by a Tengu.  How could that be a coincidence?  Except that it was.  EVE is strange sometimes.

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