Flirtation with EVE University

18th April 2014 – 5.09 pm

I come on-line to see my glorious leader and a trail of bookmarks. I follow the trail to see where they lead, which is first unsurprisingly in to a class 3 w-space system. My notes tell me that the exit goes to low-sec empire space, and combine with my directional scanner to inform me at-a-glance that the tower I see is different than the one a year ago. The tower from my last visit should be well out of range, some 50 AU away.

The tower in range is small and has just about no defences, only shield hardeners. 'Yeah, I thought about it', says Fin, clearly understanding the implicit desire to test the tower for strontium. But even if the second tower didn't remain on the edge of the system, albeit also without ships, shooting a tower is still a tedious endeavour. I just take my Loki strategic cruiser on a tour of this system.

Fin has scanned the static wormhole, finding a K162 from high-sec in the process. The K162 is at the end of its life now, but the exit to low-sec is healthy, the devil-man of Heimatar shining through. I jump through to see what else may be out there, landing in a faction warfare system with six extra signatures to scan. No wormholes, though, just a couple of combat sites and plenty of gas.

Nothing in low-sec, nothing in C3a. What to do? I'll hop a gate, hopefully not too dangerous a proposition in a faction warfare system, and see if I can find better opportunity. The stargate is safely crossed, taking me to a more active system, again with six signatures. The combat, data, data, and relic sites are disappointing, but at last a wormhole! And, in warp to the first, I resolve a second.

Astero near C2 K162 in low-sec

Landing near the first wormhole sees a K162 from class 2 w-space, but more interesting is the Astero frigate also here, also investigating the connection. Unfortunately, the Astero warped in from a different direction, at as cautiously a distance as I chose, putting her rather too far for me to hope to catch. But she's just sitting there, examining the wormhole, giving me a chance of getting in range. I start edging closer, closer, but the Astero finally gets its bearings and burns towards the wormhole, jumping through when in range.

I won't catch the Astero, not even if I decloak and burn to the wormhole myself. I still get closer anyway, decloaking and activating my sensor booster in case she comes back out polarised, but whatever the pilot sees in the C2 it is enough to keep her attention. Never mind, I have another wormhole. It's another connection to class 2 w-space, this one outbound, and with a Talwar destroyer and Sentinel frigate sitting on it.

Talwar and Sentinel on a wormhole in low-sec

Both destroyer and frigate warp before my ancient reactions catch up with my senses, but never mind. I have my own C2 system to explore, albeit through a poor outbound wormhole. Or maybe I don't, as the Talwar returns before I crawl cloaked in to jump range, followed shortly after by the Sentinel's reappearance. Now I'm curious. Curious enough to check the pilots' affiliation. EVE University.

These being EVE-Uni pilots doesn't bode well for my solo ambush, not with so many pilots in the system. But what the hell, right? I decloak, get my systems working, and target the Talwar first. He seems like a threat. I gain a positive lock, scramble his engines, and start shooting, stripping his shields quickly but without knowing if that's good or not. Maybe he's armour-tanked. Whatever his situation, the pilot predictably bails out through the wormhole. Let's see what the Sentinel does.

The frigate's shields drop precipitously too, but the Sentinel is pretty nippy. He zips out from under my warp scrambler, far enough that he may have thought he was merely disrupted, and warps clear. Okay, let's chase that Talwar. I jump to C2b, see the Talwar on the wormhole still, and re-engage. Yep, he returns straight back to low-sec. I'm not foolish enough to polarise myself in such a situation, where my target almost certainly has plenty of back-up and I have none. I just push away from the wormhole and cloak, as a Stabber cruiser warps in.

Stabber warps in as I move from the wormhole and cloak

The Stabber's pilot is in EVE-Uni too, so I suppose this C2 is under their control. If that weren't confirmation enough that not continuing the engagement polarised was a sensible move, once the Stabber fails to find my cloaked Loki and jumps to low-sec only to have a Raptor interceptor follow seconds behind it is pretty convincing. It looks like I've found myself some minor excitement.

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