3rd February 2011 – 5.18 pm

Today's wormhole is nicely conspicuous against a background of bookmarked signatures. It's not quite a fully mapped system any more, although noting the single new anomaly corrects that, and more signatures will appear soon enough, but for a few days I should have an easier time plucking the wormhole from the noise of mining sites. The static wormhole is healthy and stable, and I jump through to our neighbouring class 3 w-space system to explore.

Nine warp bubbles are on my directional scanner and, apart from the expected celestial bodies, nothing else. Two planets are out of range of my d-scanner, though, so I bookmark the wormhole home, launch probes, and warp away to check for signs of life. I see a tower, but no pilots, on the outskirts of the system. As I locate the tower a blanket scan of the C3 shows little more than two anomalies and two signatures. I know one signature is the wormhole home, and the other must be the system's static wormhole, which makes scanning particularly easy today.

Hullo, warping to the tower finds two Iteron haulers that weren't on my d-scan a moment ago. Both are piloted, by related capsuleers too, and there doesn't seem to be anyone else around. I chivvy up my scanning to resolve the static wormhole, luckily out of d-scan range of the tower, and recall my probes so that there are no tell-tale signs of my presence. As my signal on the signature reaches 100% one of the Iterons moves, but only to their bookmark can and then to a hangar.

I warp out to the wormhole to bookmark its actual position—the scanned position generally several kilometres away from the locus itself—noting its being an exit to null-sec k-space, before warping back to continue monitoring the ships at the tower. The Iteron warps out, but his direction doesn't suggest he's heading to the exit wormhole. Maybe he's collecting planet goo from the customs offices! It looks like he's headed directly out to the nearest planet, and maybe he'll continue around the system, I need to get a pointier ship quickly.

I warp and jump home, swap my Buzzard covert operations boat for a Manticore stealth bomber, and head straight back. On jumping in to the class 3 system I punch d-scan to see if the Iteron has ventured closer to the centre of the system, but there is no sign of the hauler nearby. In that case, I warp my stealth bomber to the tower, and find the Iteron has returned to sit inside the shields. And he's not moving. In fact, both Iterons disappear, the pilots only make a brief appearance in w-space for now.

Perhaps the pilot wasn't collecting planet goo, maybe instead visiting one of the two cans visible on d-scan but not on the same grid as the tower. But I can't be sure. Whatever he was up to, the C3 is inactive again. At least glorious leader Fin has turned up, and I update her on what has happened so far. 'Want to clear their two anomalies?', she asks. Yep, okay. We grab our Tengu strategic cruisers and start to plunder the Sleeper loot of our teasing neighbours.

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed.