Getting back on track

15th November 2013 – 5.46 pm

Let's get Fin home. Sure, it would have been simpler had that wormhole not collapsed, and that hostile fleet not thrown a party in her honour in the middle of class 2 w-space, and had my glorious leader not been in an Orca industrial command ship and the hostile fleet most certainly not. Even so, her pod is intact and in high-sec empire space, and I'm feeling more than a little responsible for the loss of another expensive ship and the isolation of my colleague.

The plan was... well, I'm not quite sure why I keep mentioning plans. They never work. So we were meant to isolate out home system and strip Sleepers of their loot for ISK. We almost got that first part done, but failing to complete the first stage of a plan and losing a ship instead could be called something of a farce. Maybe I should stop having plans. I'll have goals instead. That sounds better. My goal is to get Fin back to the home system. And, being a goal, it doesn't matter what the intermediate stages are any more. Nothing can go wrong.

We've only recently collapsed our static wormhole with the intention of keeping the new one closed, but circumstances change. I swap back to a cloaky Loki strategic cruiser, launch probes, and scan for the replacement wormhole. It's easily found in a newly cleaned system, and I'm soon jumping to the neighbouring class 3 w-space system. And whilst I'm not here to roam or hunt I can't ignore best practices. I update my directional scanner to see what's in the system.

D-scan shows me a tower and no ships, which sounds about right. Opening the system map has nothing out of d-scan range too, so what I can see is what is visibly out there, which includes a mere eight planets and eight moons. That makes finding the tower straightforward, as does its location being in my notes from thirteen months ago. I have to admire the tenacity of a corporation that persists so long with a black hole in the system. My notes also show the system holds a static exit to high-sec. Perhaps I can redeem myself quickly.

Scanning the five anomalies and eight signatures has my plucking the static exit to high-sec out of the noise straight away, which is nice. A second, chubbier wormhole resolves under my probes as I am in warp, which is also nice, given that I drop next to what turns out to be a dying wormhole. The region on the other side looks like Metropolis, which could be convenient for Fin, if the wormhole lingers long enough. But I may as well continue scanning. The second wormhole is a K162 from class 3 w-space, which could offer a better exit. A bit of gas follows, then a third wormhole, more gas, and a fourth wormhole. Maybe we have options.

System scanned, I recall my probes and can now reconnoitre both sides of the wormholes. The third wormhole is a K162 from low-sec, exiting putting me in Placid, a dozen hops from Fin's location. Back to C3a and across to the wobbly high-sec exit, where the system in Metropolis is also a dozen systems from Fin. But this route is all in high-sec space, which is safer, particularly as Fin isn't just coming home. She has seen some minerals stockpiled in a nearby system, bought a hauler, and is going to return in a productive manner. I still have a lot to learn from my glorious leader.

C3a now has someone else's scanning probes whizzing around. That could be unfortunate. An Anathema covert operations boat blips on d-scan, so at least there isn't a cloaky strategic cruiser on the prowl—that I know about—but there could be. I need to stay alert. The last wormhole is a K162 from null-sec, sitting at half mass, and clearly from Perrigen Falls. I'll ignore that, and instead take a look at C3b as Fin starts her journey to the wormhole in Metropolis.

As per class 3 w-space mandates, d-scan shows me a tower and no ships in a system that also has nowhere to hide, and fewer planets and moons than C3a. Six planets, three moons, and my previous visit was only two weeks ago. And as I am getting my bearings, cloaked and at a safe distance, the wormhole crackles behind me. A Cheetah appears, a cov-ops but not the expected Anathema, and warps clear. I don't see where it heads, mostly because the wormhole crackles again to bring a Legion strategic cruiser in to the system.

Legion jumps between class 3 w-space systems

The Legion also warps from the wormhole, and this time I see its parting vector. The strategic cruiser disappears to empty space, so isn't local. It also has further escorts, at whatever wormhole it next jumps through, with a two more strategic cruisers appearing briefly on d-scan. It looks to me like the Cheetah was scouting the Legion safely home, with the other two ships ready to assist the returning ship should it encounter trouble. That's a wise move. So is tagging their corporation for Fin to be able to identify any other ships planning to come this way.

Followed by a Cheetah in the same corporation

I won't scan C3b. I don't see the point just yet. It's good to know that traffic may be coming this way, but as long as they don't know about our wormhole we should be okay. What's more important is making sure Fin can get back in to w-space, and back to our tower. I jump to C3a, warp to the high-sec exit, and report that the wormhole still lives. The probes in the system disappear, the Anathema blips on scan again, and the system goes quiet. I hope it's a good quiet.

In comes Fin. I am sitting on our K162, in case the Anathema comes back, and because Fin can probably handle jumping back to high-sec if anything goes wrong on the other side of the system. But all looks good. She warps across to our wormhole, jumps home, and, after a pause, says that she has reached our tower safely. Good. And as there are no probes visible in the system, and almost nothing to scan anyway, I think it's relatively safe to say the Anathema hasn't come this way. After the evening's excitement, I think that means it's time to go off-line after finishing with circumstances going right again. We should do more of that.

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