A new signature at home is often an interesting discovery to make. Could it be a new site to plunder for materials that can be sold for ISK—or activated and ignored if you're not industrially inclined? Could it be a new wormhole that leads to opportunity for a combat engagement, whichever side holds the advantage, or even a route out to empire space where fuel, ships, and other supplies can be brought in?
When coming home after a full night's activity, however, a new signature is not always welcomed. I'm more inclined to ignore the discovery scanner pinging me new intelligence without interrogation more than usual, as I am already in the frame-of-mind to go off-line and get some rest. I tend to go with my inertia. As it happens, my current inertia is confused. I was coming home to go off-line, but I am still in space, still in my covert Proteus strategic cruiser.
I suppose I could at least scan the new signature and see what it is. It could just be gas, which would both sate my curiosity and allow me the peace of mind to go off-line in an idle constellation. Of course, it's not, it's a wormhole, and I can't really find an excuse now not to warp to the wormhole to see where it comes from. Class 5 w-space. Okay, good. Only now I can't find an excuse not to see what's happening on the other side.
It could be nothing, of course, as the higher-class w-space systems have a tendency to connect to themselves, and I could just be poking my prow through the end of a chain of systems a dozen long, all empty and inactive, the scout already home and his colleagues collapsing their static wormhole to give me a trail of breadcrumbs without even a sammich at the end of it. Or there could be someone being a bit silly in an expensive ship. You just can't tell.
I jump through the K162 in to C5a, curious that no one has evidently come this way so far. There are no obvious signs of scanning probes in our home system, or in our neighbouring class 3 system, which makes me wonder who opened this wormhole and how far did they go. Updating my directional scanner sees ships, though. Two Vargur marauders, three Iteron V haulers. There's a tower as well, but no wrecks.
Maybe the marauders aren't busy at the moment, which may be for the best. I doubt I could successfully engage one of them by myself, and seeing so much ISK in space without being able to destroy any of it would be frustrating. The Iterons are more interesting, or would be if they hadn't been usurped for general w-space life by poorly conceptualised specialised variants of the hull. Still, I'll find them and see if there are any pilots.
Locating the tower is straightforward, and lets me see that of the five ships only one Iteron is piloted. Is it really just him in the system? One planet lurks out of d-scan range, but warping that way sees no other towers or ships. Maybe the Iteron pilot has scouted quickly to empire space, when I wasn't paying attention, and is now looking to take his hauler out for a solo spin. I do hope so.
I loiter outside the tower, watching the Iteron, waiting for any sign of movement. I've orientated myself in the system map to the position of the wormhole, so that I can know quickly if the Iteron is headed that way or if there is a second wormhole I don't know about yet. That's assuming the Iteron moves, of course. Which he doesn't.
Our last visit to this system was a good day. A Megathron jumped through the wormhole as we collapsed the connection, at which point we caught and destroyed the battleship, then ransomed the ejected pilot to give him an exit out of w-space. No such luck today, the Iteron pilot not apparently able to will himself in to using C3a's high-sec exit. I'm not going to wait around all night either, not when it's already late. Oh well, an Iteron kill would have finished the night with a bang.