A low-sec distraction

16th November 2010 – 5.40 pm

To take my mind off the inactive skill queue Fin and I head to low-sec. Fin has fitted a couple of Drake battlecruisers to be agile and hard-hitting, sacrificing most of the passive tank as a compromise, and we're going to look for trouble. Roaming around w-space can be quiet, as scanning is required to find other pilots and there are still many empty systems, but hopefully we can bump in to some targets easily enough in empire space. We set out from our new base system and activate the stargate to throw us in to the closest low-sec system.

We jump through the gate to absolutely nothing. No one is loitering on the gate, hoping for high-sec suckers to appear, and there is no one but ourselves in the system. But this should probably not come as a surprise, as checking my atlas indicates that the system is part of a three-system chain of low-sec separating high-sec space. It is unlikely that many, if any, low-sec denizens would come wandering through looking for a fight. But low-sec proper is only a few more jumps away, and a couple more empty systems pass us by quickly enough on the journey.

Once actually in low-sec the prospects for a fight look better. Ten pilots are in the local channel, but closer inspection shows they may all be in dock and not in ships. At least we have as much low-sec space to roam through as we need now and simply move on to the next system, navigating from stargate to stargate, no need to scan for wormholes. In the next system there is still nothing on the stargates, which is where we are expecting the most trouble, but it looks like there are some ships elsewhere in the system. I go looking for them whilst Fin acts as gate bait.

Fin's pretty good as acting as bait, some Russian ships jumping through and engaging her Drake whilst I am looking for activity mid-system. I respond to her call that she's dying by warping back to her position, loyally but foolishly turning up to see a battlecruiser wreck orbited by a Cerberus heavy assault ship and Fleet Issue Stabber cruiser. As the active ships starting to blink in my HUD I'd better start shooting one of them.

I pick the Cerberus as my target and engage, seeing it warp off almost immediately, forcing me to switch targets. It is only after a Cynabal cruiser jumps through the gate to join the fight that I realise switching targets also means re-activating my launchers, although it honestly doesn't look like it would have made a difference to the outcome. My shields are gone, the Drake's armour is dropping rapidly, and the stargate is refusing to let me jump. Low-sec is weird.

My ship explodes around me and I warp my pod away to safety. Rather than linger in the system I simply head back to high-sec, making a detour from our base system to pick up my Buzzard covert operations boat, stored along with some other ships of mine in the other exit system we used. I'll use the Buzzard to start scanning for wormholes tomorrow, because I think I had better get myself back to w-space sooner rather than later.

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