There are some bookmarks for a simple constellation waiting for me as I come on-line, but how fresh are they? Warping to empty space where a wormhole should be says 'not very fresh, Penny', so I have some scanning to do. I start by scanning our current static wormhole, hoping that it stays there this time. Yesterday's shenanigans may have been interesting but they added complications that weren't amenable to getting back to the home w-space system.
Jumping to our neighbouring class 3 system sees a tower and ships on my directional scanner. Imagine that! But there are no wrecks in the system along with the Raven, Megathron, and Hyperion battleships, so probably no pilots. And, huh, there are no anomalies either, so no wonder there aren't any wrecks. The tower is in the same general direction as the one from my last visit, eighteen months ago, so I warp in the other direction to launch probes, performing a blanket scan as I return to find the tower.
Nope, not here. It's the right planet but wrong moon, and easily rectified. No pilots either. I can't say I'm surprised. Scanning the four signatures—well, three of them, as one is our K162 that I hope I already know about—resolves three wormholes, a natural result for such a bare system. The static exit to low-sec leads to Khanid, the K162 from high-sec looks like it may come from Solitude, with a nice mix of nebulae visible, and the K162 from low-sec leads in from socket closed. Balls.
I reboot my ship, refraining from smacking the console in case it shakes the Minmatar design apart, and return to check the second K162. It comes from the Essence region. The notorious system Old Man Star, in particular. Let me try another wormhole. Back to C3a and out to check the high-sec connection, which puts me not in Solitude but Genesis, with an orange in the system. The capsuleer is not from w-space, though, and it's just a case of general animosity between our two alliances. And, as I take in the view, identifying the various nebulae visible, an Anathema jumps past me.
I'm sitting on a wormhole connecting w-space with high-sec, and my potential target is a covert operations boat. Chasing it is setting myself up for failure. But I've been doing that for a long time, so I jump behind the Anathema, wait for him to shed his session-change cloak, and then aggressively attempt to gain a target lock as he cloaks immediately. Of course, he gets away, and if he hadn't he would have simply jumped back to high-sec. Still, it was some minor excitement.
The Anathema is gone. I don't know where, it doesn't really matter. No w-space lurks beyond our own, and no probes are launched. Oh, they are now, just as Aii comes on-line. We could perhaps set a meagre trap for the cov-ops, but as he's a tourist it's probably not worth it. I'll just hit low-sec to scan. Or I'll warp to the wormhole and see the Anathema eighty kilometres away, decloaked and burning hard to the wormhole.
Now I'm clutching at straws. The Anathema is moving incredibly fast, and towards a wormhole. If I try to intercept him off the wormhole he can cloak, and if I try to catch him on the wormhole he'll just jump, at which point he'll become more slippery. And that's not taking in to account his speed, which will have him zipping past me if I decloak too late, or easily out of my engagement range if I decloak too early. I don't even think there is a right time to try to catch him in this situation. But I'll give it a go.
I move to intercept the Anathema, given a suitably loose understanding of 'intercept'. Sure enough, as I decloak and soak up the sensor recalibration delay, the Anathema both has time to cloak as a reaction and his micro warp drive, already on full burn, boosts the ship past my position and on to the wormhole, which, whilst it reveals him once more, allows him to evade me by jumping out of w-space. I told myself so.
The Anathema may come back, of course. He'll be polarised, but just as agile. Even so, I'll have a slight advantage in that, because he knows I'm here, I won't be hiding any more. I remain decloaked, sensor booster active, waiting just in case. The wormhole crackles, it's the Anathema. And although he appears under three kilometres from my Loki strategic cruiser, he jinks, pulses his micro warp drive, and is gone once more. Okay, I think I've had my fun with this ship. Moving on.