Mission accomplished. A scant twenty minutes or so since coming on-line has seen me brutally destroy a rookie frigate with extreme prejudice—albeit without a pilot—and find a route back to our w-space home for my glorious leader. I think I'm doing pretty well so far this evening, and although the wormholes behind me in our neighbouring class 3 system are all close to collapsing I can see a few extra signatures to investigate in this high-sec system in The Citadel.
I am about to shed my cloak, always activated on any wormhole, even in high-sec, to deny information to other pilots, when the K162 from C3a crackles with a transit. Who is that, and what are they doing? I doubt the dying wormholes would be used, and neither would the critically unstable K162 from class 5 w-space. I take a peek at the local communication channel, rather filled with pilots in this relatively safe system, and see an orange. Is the capsuleer a newly woken occupant of C3a? And would I even recognise the corporation if I saw its name?
Thankfully, any intelligence I need to bring to bear on the situation is negated by the ship jumped through the wormhole decloaking before too long. It's an Imicus scanning frigate, piloted by an orange, and almost certainly an occupant of C3a. I can't do much to him in high-sec, but happily he turns around and jumps right back to his home system.
Normally, I wouldn't stand much chance in catching such a frigate as the Imicus, not whilst in my Proteus strategic cruiser. It doesn't normally stop me, and won't this time either, but I'm feeling more optimistic about this chase. For a start, the Imicus will be polarised, so if I catch him he will stay caught. Better still, I stand an improved chance of catching the Imicus because of the agility-sapping black hole in C3a. Even a frigate turns slowly under a strong gravitational pull.
I chase the frigate through the wormhole, decloaking immediately after my jump and getting my offensive systems hot in anticipation of the Imicus's re-appearance. There he is, and with my targeting systems twitching I start to gain a positive lock on the slowly turning frigate. The seconds tick down on the targeting timer, the Imicus turns, turns, and I gain a positive lock as the frigate simultaneously enters warp. Damn.
The Imicus snatched away from my attentions warps towards the tower in C3a. I follow, cloaked, to see two Imicuses inside the force field. One warps back towards the wormhole, the other blinks off-line. I head back to the wormhole too, not really expecting to catch a ship but curious to see what it does. I dunno, jump out, perhaps, or cloak. Either way, the smaller ship reaches the wormhole before me and does what it does under the coarse watch of d-scan.
I loiter with intent, which is w-space code for wasting time, until Fin makes her way to the high-sec system. That was quick, and I see her enter C3a and follow her to our K162, if only because it feels like a long while since I've not wanted to shoot a ship I've seen in w-space. Fin busies herself with whatever administration tasks she gets up to that I should probably understand. I should probably see if I can find us some targets. I turn my Proteus towards the exit to high-sec, where I can scan the signatures there for wormholes.