Crushing wormholes and customs offices

7th March 2013 – 5.49 pm

I would say the w-space constellation was rich earlier, but that wouldn't be entirely accurate. It was only one system out of four that offered any activity, although I enjoyed how the locals kept throwing ships at me, even if it was unintentional and I couldn't quite catch all of them. But coming home had me pass through a dying wormhole, which means that the connection is likely to be quite unstable now, on my return. It doesn't really matter, though, as our neighbouring system was also waking up when I left, so just about anyone paying attention knows we're here.

Well, everyone except maybe the occupants behind the new K162 connecting to the home system. Our puppet is on-line and has scanned the K162, leaving it mostly unexplored to see what's currently happening in the class 3 system through our static wormhole, which gives me some w-space to explore. Class 4 w-space, too, apparently with a Drake battlecruiser in the system. That's worth taking a look at. I warp my cloaky Loki strategic cruiser to the wormhole and jump to C4a.

There is indeed a Drake visible on my directional scanner from the wormhole, as is a tower. A previous visit from six months ago doesn't point me towards the tower—but does remind me of the time a Legion strategic cruiser with Dramiel frigate escort decloaked me on a wormhole—as the system was unoccupied then. It's easy enough to locate a single tower, though, and after finessing d-scan for a bit I am soon floating outside a force field where an empty Drake sits.

A lack of capsuleer presence probably means there is another K162 to find, linking further back through w-space, so I warp out to launch probes. Performing a blanket scan of the system reveals two anomalies and five signatures, and resolving them finds rocks, more rocks, gas, and the expected K162, somewhat obviously, lurking over 4·5 AU from a planet. As C5 space connects to C5 space, so does C4 space to C4 space. I jump through the K162 to C4b.

D-scan shows me scanning probes in C4b, nothing else. It may be worth loitering on the wormhole for a while, in case a scout passes my way, although I have no idea what ship is scanning or how many signatures there are. And back at home the puppet has returned from minor exploration, deploring C3a's static wormhole leading to null-sec. It is the only exit we have, and it is far from suitable to bring our glorious leader home. But Aii is on-line and also available now, and the pair of them get to work collapsing our static connection to look for a better exit.

If they're crashing our wormhole, they may as well crash the K162 at home at the same time. It won't take any extra effort, and will alleviate the tedium of waiting for polarisation effects to end. So Aii and the puppet bounce massive ships across our system, as a Heron decloaks on the wormhole in front of me and jumps to C4a. I follow the frigate, of course, thinking my odds of catching it are greater than had the scout been in a covert operations boat. I even gain a positive lock on the wormhole in C4a, but only because the Heron has turned right back around and returned to C4b.

Trying to lock a Heron on a C4/C4 wormhole

Scanning frigates are easier to catch than cov-ops, but not by much. I chase the Heron back to C4b, but the tiny ship decloaks, aligns, and warps before I can stop it. At least I see the direction it warps, and head out that way myself, cloaking as I do, to see a tower appear on d-scan, along with the Heron. I find the two together, and with the comfort of knowing that the pilot is local to C4b, and that C4a remains inactive, I head home so that my colleagues can complete the killing of two wormholes.

The K162 to C4a is collapsed smoothly. Our static wormhole, however, lives after the final jump. We could push a heavy interdictor through it, but there seems little point in risking isolating another pilot in the slim hope of finding a decent connection for bringing one home. The wormhole can stay sickly, and we will recover Fin soon enough. Tonight we have another mission. A customs office is being torn down. No taxation without representation!

Shooting a space barn door with lasers

Sticking it to The Man sounds exciting, but in reality it can be quite tedious. The puppet and I board laser-spewing Oracle battlecruisers, Aii primes an Armageddon battleship, and we all warp to our barn door of a target. Now we shoot. And shoot. And continue shooting, for what seems like ages. It takes so long that I swear Aii's ship starts looking like a Raven battleship. But eventually the customs office can take no more abuse, and it explodes. I'm pretty much the same, except I end up asleep.

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