Driving an initial wedge

15th January 2009 – 10.33 am

I call on my agent and he has some work for me. 'Cadet Ibramovic, would you do us a favour and blow up a diplomat?' Sure thing. Wait, what? It's as if he's been eavesdropping on my thoughts, as I've been looking for something a little more exciting. I hope my new implants aren't bugged. I can't really say much more about the mission because of the Caldari Secrets Act, I'll just say that my agent's bosses have a plan to stir up inter-faction distrust to work in our favour. A job's a job, and I've taken on both Republic and Federation ships before. Oops, what a give away!

I warp to the deadspace location and there are representatives of both factions in the area. A bit of open broadcast comms shows that I am quite unexpected and disavowed by both sides, who promptly try to exclude me from the diplomatic talks. That's okay, my launchers are loaded, targets are locked and I didn't come here to talk. I keep my distance from the cruisers, staying at a decent range for my missiles, and let my drones take out the incoming frigates.

With my shields staying strong I survey the battlefield with the help of my tactical overlay and notice two larger ships loitering at the back, not even trying to engage me. I haven't locked on to these targets yet because, apart from being out of range, they don't appear on my overview. A quick manual scan shows that they are diplomatic vessels, my mission target. I also learn something new about the UI, in that when I right-click on a object in space an option is available to add that type of object to my overview, in this case a mission industrial ship. Having done that, I just need to save the new overview's settings.

The diplomatic ships are not attacking, but neither are they retreating. The hostile frigates are quickly despatched by my drones and I turn my boat around to bear down on the diplomats, surging through the handful of cruisers remaining as my missiles continue to rain upon them. Seeing two diplomatic ships causes me to pause. I call up the mission briefing to check exactly what I am being paid to do. It's a good thing I check, as I am only supposed to be blowing up one of the diplomatic ships. Not just any diplomatic ship either, one belonging to a specific faction. Because of this I am not only glad that the two ships didn't appear immediately on my overview, lest I had targeted and destroyed them soon after warping in, but as my engines power me in to missile range I also check several more times just which of the two diplomatic ships is my target. I need to be sure.

One diplomatic ship explodes quickly, the other must be thankful to see me warp out. It is all part of a grander scheme, though. My agent is happy to read my report of a successful mission and hints that there may be a follow-up task soon. I am intrigued as to what I've got myself involved in.

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