Close and quiet

18th October 2010 – 5.46 pm

It's early, I'm alone, there is a new w-space constellation to explore. But maybe I'm not alone, as although there are no colleagues of mine awake I see some scanning probes on my directional scanner. Perhaps a wormhole has connected in to our system and a K162 waits to be found. I was about to scan the home system for our static wormhole anyway, I can always look for a second—and active—connection.

I am able to resolve only the one wormhole in the system, which is odd. Maybe the wormhole was opened earlier and someone has come in through the connection from the other direction. I warp to the wormhole to start my greater exploration, and bumping in to an ally there answers the question of whose probes I saw. We both bookmark the connection and prepare to jump through, and all the scanning probes on d-scan disappear as we each recall our own set.

Now I have help in scanning it should be more efficient. There is not much to find through our static connection, though. The clear d-scan result hides a tower anchored to the outer planet, where an unpiloted Tengu strategic cruiser and Chimera carrier sit silently in the shields. The class 4 system looks to be kept relatively clean by the powerful combat ships, only two signatures to be found, although the occupants aren't so fussy as to worry about clearing the five anomalies also present. The two signatures are obviously the K162 we jumped through and the system's static wormhole, making finding the next connection routine, and we are soon in the adjacent class 3 w-space system.

I've been in this C3 a couple of times before, my notes indicating a tower being anchored around a certain moon when I was last here four months ago. The tower is still in the same place, holding a Cormorant destroyer and Crucifier frigate safe whilst the ships' pilots are inactive. Scanning finds plenty of rocks floating in the system, along with a wormhole leading out to high-sec empire space. Two systems to k-space is a small constellation and with nowhere else to explore and no one to shoot I take the time to be thorough in my scanning. The C4 is thoroughly mapped already and this C3 only holds more rocks, some gas, and a radar site. No more wormholes gives me the choice of high-sec or home, and I choose both.

I jump out to empire space to reconnoitre the exit system before returning to our tower to copy my set of bookmarks for colleagues to use. I am asked to make use of them too, stuffing my Crane transport ship full of Sleeper loot and salvage, and making a trip to a high-sec station to inject more float in to the corporate wallet. But there is little else to do for now and, after I park my Crane back at the tower, I take a break.

There is more potential for activity on my return. Now a wormhole actually has opened in to our home system, a class 2 w-space system connecting to us. The C2 also has an exit to high-sec space, and that it was opened from the other side indicates some sign of activity that I am not going to ignore. I board my Manticore stealth bomber, copy across the new bookmarks, and go roaming. I jump in through the K162 to the class 2 system and am soon floating invisibly around the occupants' tower, which initially lacks capsuleer life but is made more interesting when a Hound stealth bomber arrives.

The pilot of the Hound swaps enticingly in to an Orca industrial command ship, making me wonder if he intends to collapse one or other of the two wormholes in the system. It is vicious but I tingle at the thought of snaring another expensive ship, although the feeling doesn't last as the pilot swaps again to a Maelstrom battleship. At least the Maelstrom will put up a fight and require strategy and support to defeat, particularly if it goes out to engage Sleepers. But the pilot swaps again, back in to his Hound, before logging off. I suppose he was simply checking fittings or performing system checks. Either way, the system is deathly quiet.

Guiding my Manticore in the other direction, back through the home system and through our static wormhole, only finds corporation activity. A couple of inattentive strategic cruiser pilots shoot Sleepers in the neighbouring C4, and the C3 is as quiet now as it was earlier. I return to lurk a little longer in the C2 but, apart from a disappearing Iteron hauler, there is little to keep my attention. I jump home and warp to our tower, stowing my stealth bomber in the hangar and relaxing with a Quafe. W-space can be quiet some days.

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