Fin's been, scanned, and gone. That'll save me some time! Or it should, if w-space weren't so bally changeable. I launch probes to scan the home system and find two signatures unaccounted for by the current collection of corporate bookmarks. That's still better than resolving the lot, though, and it doesn't take long to activate some new rocks that have drifted in to the system. The second signature is unsurprisingly a wormhole, as the inter-w-space connections are the most common cause of new signatures, and this one is a K162 from a class 2 system. Nifty.
I jump through the wormhole to explore the C2 first, as I am more likely to find activity by heading through a K162 than a static connection, although I see nothing on my directional scanner from the wormhole. That's okay, as opening the system map shows the system to be quite large and holding planets out of range of d-scan. In fact, it's better than okay, as I should be able to launch probes without being spotted. But I won't launch them at the wormhole, just in case anyone comes this way. I warp off to the nearest planet, launch probes, and configure them for a blanket scan.
Using the maximum scanning range of the probes I am able to keep them out of d-scan range of any ship that is potentially in the system whilst still being able to get an overall idea of what is to be found here. I get little resolution on the result of the blanket scan, because of using the maximum scanning range, but I see all without being seen back. In this case, I find some ships even before I have my probes arranged, as I warp off to explore once I am cloaked again and, near the centre of the system, d-scan shows me a Dominix battleship, Abaddon battleship, Buzzard covert operations boat, and two Orca industrial command ships, along with an active tower. My blanket scan may only confirm to me that those five ships are present, but it also shows that there are no others to be found elsewhere.
Adjusting d-scan reveals no wrecks, so I locate the tower to see that the Dominix, Abbadon, and an Orca are piloted, with the other two ships floating empty. A Loki appears on d-scan as I loiter outside the tower, and the strategic cruiser doesn't appear to be local, as all the ships in the tower are named according to a convention. The Loki drops off d-scan soon enough, leaving me looking at three inactive pilots again. I consider scanning the system but the twenty signatures mingling with the fourteen anomalies look a bit messy to me, particularly when I could just head home and jump through our static wormhole to explore more space for now.
I warp away from the tower and towards the wormhole home, performing one last scan as I cross the system. Well, that's interesting. A sixth ship is on my combat scanning probes. It could be the Loki, although he wasn't in range of d-scan at the tower, nor is he in range from the wormhole. Another scan confirms the ship is still in the system and not cloaked, so I turn around to try to find him. There he is, in one of the simple anomalies, happily shooting Sleepers whilst the locals remain oblivious to him. And he remains oblivious to me. This is why I keep my probes hidden.
The Loki is looting and salvaging as he fights, so there is no chance of catching a separate salvager following behind. Even though I don't have the firepower to take on the Loki alone, my glorious leader is returned and more than happy to come and help. She boards a Legion strategic cruiser back at our tower and joins me in the anomaly in the C2, watching our target. I got myself in to a nice position in the site and have just been waiting for my partner in piracy to arrive. Now Fin tells me she's landed a few kilometres from my position, which as we're both cloaked I'll take her word on, making us ready. Now all I need is for that last Sleeper cruiser in this wave to pop and we can strike.
The cruiser pops, leaving a wreck behind. I bookmark the wreck, wait to see the Loki move towards it in order to loot and salvage, and warp both Fin and my ships towards that position. We decloak seconds away from our target, a little early to do anything but soak up the recalibration delay, but we have enough surprise on our side that the Loki doesn't have time to run. We lock on to the strategic cruiser, disrupt his warp engines, and let loose our devastating attack. I slow him down to a crawl and pump volley after volley of missiles in to his shields, whilst Fin sucks his capacitor dry. It may take a while before the Loki can no longer run any shield boosters or hardeners, but once we force them off-line he should be a sitting duck.
I keep a close watch on d-scan, in case more ships are headed our way, but it remains just me, Fin, and the Loki. Our target's shields are dropping slowly but steadily, and he's happily trying to dent Fin's heavy armour. I'm not quite getting away scot-free, as a newly arrived Sleeper battleship is taking pot-shots at me, but the drone's damage is just a tickle compared to what the Loki could be doing. More shooting, more energy neutralising, and we finally drop the Loki's shields. We are expecting the fight to progress more quickly now, but somehow the Loki is soaking up the damage to its armour just as well as it did for its shields. Maybe we're just not that devastating after all.
It's no surprise that we aren't a powerhouse of damage. I am in my not-for-combat covert Tengu strategic cruiser, and Fin's in what is essentially a support ship. Even so, the neutralisers are mighty effective weapons against active defences, and without them I doubt we'd even get this far. And the Loki's armour is dropping. He's not going to recover. Unlike the shields and armour, the Loki's hull is made of tinfoil and is obliterated with only a few volleys, and we watch as the strategic cruiser explodes to our sustained assault. I aim to catch the pod as it is ejected but the pilot warps away a split-second before I can stop it. That's okay, the Loki is an excellent kill, made possible by good scouting, communication, and teamwork.
We loot the wreck, scoop the drones, and clear the pocket. I'm not shooting the wreck this time, as it is a rare occasion that we get some Tech III salvage, and even if we don't get to realise it ourselves I consider it best to think we could and not just destroy the wreck. Fin heads homewards and I bounce off the local tower. All the pilots have gone, leaving just the two empty ships. I'll assume they've gone off-line after being active before I turned up. All looks clear. I recall my probes, jump home, and swap to a salvager.
Returning to the C2 and warping to my monitoring point in the now-despawned site has no threats visible. I warp to the empty wreck and salvage it, pulling three bars of rather exotic looking metal in to my hold. I can drop that off at our tower, swap back to my covert Tengu, and go looking for more activity through our static wormhole.