I come on-line to interrupt some mining. Not by shooting any ships, although I could have done, but by my glorious leader stopping her rock-chomping to open our wormhole and go exploring. I follow behind Fin, sort of. I stop at the wormhole, distracted by the shimmering colours and a general feeling of malaise. Besides, it's generally best to have one scout explore a system before committing more pilots. Right?
There's nothing visible to the directional scanner from the wormhole, the static exit leads to null-sec, and the inner system holds a tower with a piloted Enyo inside its force field. The Enyo is an assault frigate, which uses small guns. Is there a wolf-rayet phenomenon in our neighbouring class 3 system, by any chance? 'Yes.' The capsuleer's not doing anything that would take advantage of the boost to his weapons, though, so we may as well scan.
By 'we', I still mean 'Fin'. I actually jump to C3a now, at least, and as Fin doesn't take long to resolve the K346 I'm soon in warp to the exit to null-sec. I could probably take a look through that, and would if my cloaked travel to the wormhole wasn't so slow that Fin resolves and warps to a K162 from class 2 w-space before I get there. C2a sounds like a better option than null-sec, so with Fin continuing to scan I leap-frog her through the wormhole.
I appear in J111011, a binary system. Ha ha ha! No, there's just one star, and only two signatures too. A blanket scan of the system doesn't find any ships, and although exploring locates a tower C2a looks pretty dull. I probably should have gone to null-sec. But there'll be a high-sec wormhole to accompany the connection to class 3 w-space, and scanning a single signature is hardly a chore, so I call my probes in to the system.
Damn, my first scan identifies the wormhole and an industrial ship on top of it. That's bad timing. I throw my probes out of the system to hide them again, and update d-scan. The ship is an Iteron V hauler, and it doesn't look like it's coming to the tower, where I am loitering. I alert Fin, on the fair assumption that the Iteron will be going towards the only other wormhole in the system, and send my Loki strategic cruiser that way too.
I drop out of warp too late to see the Iteron jump, and Fin is quiet on the other side of the wormhole. Just in case my colleague hasn't made it to the wormhole yet, I jump through. And there's the Iteron, shedding its session change cloak late and, naturally, heading back the way it came. Knowing I'm making a mistake, I return back with it, polarising my ship.
The wormhole is clear, d-scan is clear. The Iteron waits, holding its session change cloak again. I keep watching d-scan. If any ships appear I'll really need to run, as the wormhole won't help me now. But no ships appear, nothing except the Iteron. The hauler turns, I gain a positive lock, as does Fin, and we start shooting. Still space looks clear, and although the hauler takes a bit of abuse it's not going anywhere.
As if by magic, two Proteus strategic cruisers appear, almost on top of the wormhole. Right, cloaked ships, why did I forget about them? I curse myself for becoming polarised for a simple hauler, particularly as there was no need to do so, and try to keep my head. I aim away from the two ships and try to burn clear, but one has already got a web on me. And now a warp scramble effect. I'm really not going anywhere.
Well, if I'm not getting out of here with my ship, neither is the Iteron pilot. I check the wormhole behind me—two minutes, Turkish—and keep pounding the Iteron. It explodes. I catch the pod and crack that open too. I ignore the wreck and corpse and consider what to do now. Burn my ancillary shield boosters and do what I can to the two Pr—fuck me, they're even using ECM drones. I can do nothing but rue my stupidity.
My shield boosters run out of charges. A Hurricane battlecruiser turns up to make this more humiliating, and a Helios covert operations boat appears because why not? Bye bye, yet-another Loki. I didn't deserve you. At least I get my pod clear, and manage to weather the sarcasm of one of the pilots suggesting Loki for Iteron was a good trade, knowing already that I'm about to find out it was purely bait, as empty as the pilot's head. I'm not convinced there's much more in mine.