Shields are there for a reason

24th December 2010 – 5.06 pm

Fin has returned, and collapsed the wormhole behind her. She's a genius. This gives us a new static connection to find, with a new class 3 w-space system beyond it to explore. Resolving the wormhole is straightforward, and I warp both myself and Fin to it to continue today's adventure. Jumping in to the C3 looks promising, with two towers and two Iteron haulers on the directional scanner. But the haulers are unpiloted and not preparing to pick up ore or gas mined elsewhere in the system. No one is home, so we may as well scan for wormholes.

Only one wormhole is found amongst the ten anomalies and eleven signatures, most of the latter being radar sites curiously enough. The system's static connection doesn't lead to low-sec empire space today, instead pushing us out to null-sec space in the Esoteria region. Finding the system in my atlas shows it to be close to some dead-end systems, and I take the opportunity of being here to get more red dots of exploration on my star map.

I visit eight more systems in total in null-sec, reporting a rat battleship sitting on a gate in our exit system but otherwise encountering no ships. I see plenty of wrecks on d-scan though, capsuleers apparently out ratting themselves until unfamiliar me traipses through their enclave. My route takes me back to the exit system soon enough, where I see Fin has despatched the battleship in her stealth bomber, and unsurprisingly poor loot is dropped from the gate rat.

We head back to the C3, where a Prowler transport ship has appeared on d-scan. I warp to each of the towers in turn, finding the Prowler in the shields of one of them. As I watch to gauge the pilot's intentions a Thanatos carrier appears on d-scan, moments before it drops out of warp at the same tower as the Prowler. I suppose the carrier pilot has just woken up. And his tiredness shows, as his vector in to the tower's shields sends his collision avoidance systems haywire, catapulting the Thanatos directly away from the tower he came close to destroying with his massive ship.

Onwards the carrier drifts, apparently under no compulsion to correct this movement further towards the edge of the force field, and beyond. I watch amused as the carrier starts to breach the tower's protective barrier, making itself vulnerable to attack. Of course, it could easily return to be inside the shields before anything Fin and I could throw at it would do any real harm, and the active tower defences would reduce us to smouldering wreckage in the mean time anyway, but it tickles me that the carrier pilot has been quite so careless.

Fin doesn't want this transgression to go unnoted, and she's in a stealth bomber. She started a good distance away from the carrier, but as the pilot has been quite so insensitive to his capital ship's movements Fin has had ample time to manoeuvre in to a better position. And, with no fanfare, Fin decloaks and launches a bomb at the silly Thanatos pilot, scoring a direct hit and maybe scratching the paint a little. But at least it stops the carrier pilot from hitting 'snooze' again, as he finally gets his ship's engines on-line and the Thanatos back in to the force field.

And so we collapse our static wormhole a second time, just in case our powerful neighbours want to exact any kind of revenge against our puny and humorous prod. We are getting better at collapsing the connection now, having worked out a reliable rotation of ships to use for a mostly fresh wormhole, and we isolate ourselves for the night. We leave our system unconnected as we head for our bunks to sleep.

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