Getting the timing just right

8th April 2013 – 5.30 pm

Hi Fin. 'The C2 may still be open.' Okay, great. I'll work out what that means in a minute, as soon as I've got my bearings. Ah, my glorious leader scanned earlier, resolving a K162 from class 2 w-space which may still be around some hours later. I'll check its situation with scanning probes and my eyes combined. Warping to the bookmarked location sees the wormhole still there and healthy, and my probes detect another new signature in the home system. I'll see what that is whilst Fin reconnoitres ahead of me.

It's just more Sleepers at home, and as C2a is reported sleepy I'll head in the other direction, through our static connection. The neighbouring class 3 w-space system has an Oracle battlecruiser visible on the directional scanner, but no wrecks, and a tower and Bestower hauler too. My notes from ten months ago don't point me to the tower's location, as the only planet in range—the next being over 55 AU away, and the farthest over 188 AU distant—is not where it was last time, but I don't need my notes. That single planet has just one moon, so that finding the tower is trivial.

One planet is close, the others are far away

Both ships float inside the force field without capsuleers. A bit of warping around shows that the current occupation doesn't supplement the old but replaces it, and there are no more towers or ships elsewhere. I launch probes to scan. Three anomalies and seven signatures take a little longer than normal to sort through, thanks to the sheer volume of space between planets, and, as usual, I'm left looking at gas, more gas, a few rocks, and one wormhole leading out to low-sec empire space.

The exit throws me in to a system in Kor-Azor, which is dreary, and scanning the three extra signatures gives me two radar sites and, hello, a K162 from class 3 w-space. That'll do. Two towers and a lack of ships is all d-scan wants to show me in C3b, though, with all seven planets and seven moons in range. Back to scanning, the five anomalies and four signatures contain the inevitable K162, this one coming from class 5 w-space. Let's see if that system is the origin of activity, or if I have more scanning to do.

Jumping to C5a and punching d-scan sees three towers, two Orca industrial command ships, and a Bestower in a force field. Well, probably in a force field, but maybe not. The sentence just scanned better that way. A previous visit from eighteen months ago lists just the one tower, which remains, and looking a bit harder finds the other two towers around adjacent moons. The Bestower floats empty in one tower with one Orca, the second Orca actually piloted in a second tower, though inactive, naturally.

As I prepare to launch scanning probes again a Drake appears on d-scan. The battlecruiser doesn't appear to be at one of the three towers, but what he's doing in C5 w-space alone confuses me. A fighter that size couldn't get this deep in to space on its own. Two Drakes, however, and now three, makes, well, just as little sense, really, and adding a Manticore stealth bomber isn't helping matters. Pointing d-scan meaningfully around the system shows two Drakes sitting on the wormhole to C3b. I should probably see what they're up to.

Pair of Drakes sit on the wormhole to class 3 w-space

Warping to the wormhole finds the Drakes, and shows that they are local to this class 5 system. Quite where they came from, though, remains unexplained. They weren't at a tower, and now they're at this wormhole. If they had been at a tower and warped this way I may think they were going to engage Sleepers through their static connection, but simply appearing and warping in this direction indicates other activity. As does the Stiletto interceptor allied to the Drakes that drops on to the wormhole. This ain't no Sleeper fleet.

The Stiletto jumps to C3a and, after a minute or so, the two Drakes follow. That's curious indeed. Let me approach the wormhole, because if they jump back quickly I can leave this C5 without them being able to follow, thanks to hull polarisation. If they come back. Which they don't. Not yet. And not now, either. So, what to do: death or boredom? But what are they doing? I doubt they are waiting for me, as nothing indicates they saw me enter their system, even if scouts tend not to be seen themselves. So if they're not waiting for me, they probably aren't sitting on the other side of the wormhole. Probably.

Squinting really hard at the centre of the class 5 system's static wormhole can't see any ships on the other side, in C3b, which I think is a good sign. I'll take a punt that the small fleet has moved on and, hello, the Orca has picked a good time to turn in to a Tengu strategic cruiser. The new ship disappears, either gone off-line or cloaked, I don't care. I'm returning to C3a, because I'm getting bored. Take a deep breath, decloak, and jump.

Returning fleet drops on the wormhole moments after I get clear

The wormhole's clear. That's good. I move, cloak, and punch d-scan as holy crap the fleet warps in and drops on top of the wormhole a couple of seconds after I get clear. Two Drakes and the Stiletto miss seeing my Loki strategic cruiser being non-cloaky by the narrowest margin, but the third Drake coming a few seconds afterwards is embarrassingly late. I'm pretty sure the fleet wasn't looking for me specifically but, even so, I warp to C3a's exit to low-sec without delay. You know, just in case. The ships drop off d-scan as I'm in warp, presumably jumping through the wormhole. They're going home. As am I, and in one piece, thanks to some pretty good timing.

  1. 4 Responses to “Getting the timing just right”

  2. Love the blog, one of the biggest inspirations to moving to w-space myself. Still waiting impatiently for you to gank one my goo haulers, though.


    "A bit of warping around shows that the current occupation doesn't supplant the old but replaces it, and there are no more towers or ships elsewhere."

    Supplant and replace are synonyms. I can't tell if you used the wrong word there, or if you're intending the fine distinction between two almost-synonyms; there's not enough context for me to follow the thread if it's the latter.

    By Rammstein on Apr 8, 2013

  3. Thanks, Rammstein. Did I get you tonight?

    Yeah, that looks like I picked the wrong word. I probably meant 'supplement'. I'll make the edit, thanks for pointing it out.

    By pjharvey on Apr 8, 2013

  4. "A fighter that size couldn't get this deep in to space on its own." Nice touch!

    By Von on Apr 10, 2013

  5. I sometimes like to see if anyone's paying attention.

    By pjharvey on Apr 10, 2013

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