My Legion needs repairing. Well, a little. In the ambush on the pair of Tengu strategic cruisers, my own strategic cruiser took a little light scratching here and there, and it would be irresponsible to stow it back in the hangar in such condition. That minor damage could be all that matters in the ship's next fight, and we don't want to be wasting time repairing damage from previous fights when scrambling for the next. Rather than refit with repping modules, my glorious leader jumps in to a Guardian logistics ship to repair the Legion. I would say her arrival is a bit of good timing, but perhaps not for Fin, who comes on-line a minute after our successful ambush.
Legion copacetic once more, I dump our plunder, swap back to my cloaky Loki strategic cruiser, and warp to loiter near the K162 in the home system. The class 4 w-space system on the other side is where we ambushed the Tengus and it seems prudent to monitor any movements before scanning in the opposite direction through the constellation. If they want revenge, I'd rather know about it now than when I'm casually coming home for a sammich. But all seems quiet. That is, until the wormhole crackles and a Slasher frigate disappears from my overview.
To be honest, I didn't see the Slasher appear. I was a little distracted. But what I did see is indicative of the frigate jumping from our home system through the K162, and as he was marked orange it seems reasonable to assume he's local to C4a. That suggests he came from empire space, no doubt through our neighbouring class 3 system, using our static wormhole on his route. So now what do we do? I dunno about me, still remembering the 'never go back' guideline I impose on myself, but Fin jumps her Loki to C4a to see what's happening.
Not much is happening. There are pilots at the tower in C4a, but nothing indicative of reciprocal aggression, and the Slasher is indeed a new contact. I jump in, in case there is further movement, and Fin reports that the Slasher pilot drops to his pod and warps. He doesn't come my way, which is interesting. Maybe he went to the anomaly, the site of the ambush, for some reason. I warp to my perch in the anomaly as Fin continues to monitor the tower. He's not here, but is still visible on my directional scanner. Actually, that's not his pod. It takes me a minute to register it, but what I'm seeing is the pilot's corpse floating somewhere in space.
That's peculiar. I can understand how pilots occasionally have a need to get back to empire space, and the labyrinthine nature of some w-space constellations can mean forcing a clone activation is the easiest method to do so, but it seems the pilot has only just returned from empire space. Well, whatever his reasons, the appearance of the corpse is met by the other pilots going off-line, leaving this class 4 system quiet and unthreatening. That almost makes it time to explore the constellation in the other direction. First, given that there is only one Sleeper left in the anomaly but plenty of wrecks, I steal some more loot.
Having grabbed another forty-five million ISK in plunder, I head back home, dump the loot, and warp towards our static wormhole to see what else we can find this evening. C3a looks quiet. D-scan is clear from our K162, so I move, cloak, and consult my notes. Or just looking at the system map is enough, as the system is tiny and d-scan encompasses all the planets. There is no one and nothing out there. My notes say otherwise, with two towers being present only two months ago, when Mick and I chased them chasing me. We only bagged an Osprey cruiser that day but it's more than we'll achieve tonight. The corporation has moved, maybe to deeper, more dangerous w-space.
Scanning reveals nine anomalies and fourteen signatures, soon whittled down to gas and wormholes, nine pockets of the former and four of the latter. A K162 from low-sec looks like it leads to Aridia, the second wormhole is also a K162 from low-sec, the third the system's static exit to low-sec, and the last, best hope for more w-space is just a K162 from null-sec. It's all a little underwhelming, but exiting to null-sec drops me in to the Venal region where there are no other pilots and two additional signatures. I shall rat and scan.
The null-sec system offers me a relic site and a second connection, and for once the relic site appeals to me more than the wormhole. I know I didn't much enjoy the relic sites in low-sec recently, seeing them as little more than a distraction, but there is a possibility that a relic site in null-sec could provide some very profitable loot. I would like to find out if this is one of those lucky sites. I head home, through C3a, to swap my Loki for the Buzzard covert operations boat specifically configured for hacking sites, and return to null-sec in optimistic spirits. Fin even joins me to help gather up the loot that will soon be spewed in to space.
Taking a moment to scan all of the artefacts shows that we won't be particularly lucky tonight, but the quality of the salvage in the containers is much better than in low-sec sites, and probably worth our time. This shouldn't take long, either, and all goes relatively well to start with. Hack, loot. Hack, loot. Hack... and nothing. The loot gets thrown around us and, despite our best efforts, not one bit is pulled in to our cargo holds.
We suspect the system dropping to 14% time dilation has something to do with the poor responsiveness. Something big may be happening nearby. Whatever it is, we aren't going to get involved and there seems little point in continuing here only to be frustrated. At least we got a few lumps of coal for our efforts. And as we've had a pretty full evening already, I'm happy to ignore the other wormhole and low-sec systems and simply return home to get some rest.