Plenty of ships and nothing I can do about it

10th September 2014 – 5.31 pm

Pumped from watching ships go through a wormhole with nothing I could do about it, I head back home and across to our neighbouring class 3 w-space system to see what else I can watch without getting involved. Pinging my directional scanner from our K162 in C3a sees ships and towers, but no wrecks. Perhaps the Hyperion battleship, Loki and Proteus strategic cruisers, Vexor Navy Issue and Thorax cruisers, and Magnate frigate aren't doing anything.

A lack of activity seems likely, given the near lack of anything out there for them to do. One planet is in range, the second in the system, and the first planet is 24 AU away, almost hugging the star. That's pretty much it. No wonder the towers and ships are all nearby. The silly discovery scanner shows me only three anomalies, three signatures. I'd be surprised if anything was happening.

Two planets only in this class 3 w-space system

Okay, I'm surprised. The Proteus disappears from d-scan and drones pop up. That must be happening outside of a force field, but where? Poking each anomaly with d-scan sees nothing at all. One signature is our K162, a second the static wormhole for this system, and I suppose the third could be a site. It would be a rarity to find ships clearing a relic or data site, and there are still no wrecks visible.

I point d-scan at the planet. All the towers, none of the ships. They are all out in space, perhaps at a wormhole, waiting for someone. I can make an educated guess, and start hunting the fleet with d-scan, after warping to the centre of the system to launch probes. I narrow down the fleet's position in space to within five degrees on d-scan, and gauge their range at, well, 4·9 AU from a planet almost certainly makes it a wormhole. Plus there are still no wrecks.

On top of the ships and drones, I note the presence of two large warp bubbles and one medium one, which are almost guaranteed to be draped over the wormhole to snare anyone wanting to use the wormhole. They will also catch my Proteus if I try warping in, which with drones around could be trouble for me. I need to take care. I call my probes in to scan, mostly out of curiosity, and see nothing. I've got the range of the probes wrong, a careless mistake but relatively harmless in this circumstance. The fleet clearly are prepared for an intruder, it's not like I'll be a massive surprise for them. I reposition my probes and scan again, a little more casually.

Scanning the fleet on the wormhole

I've resolved all the ships in the fleet, its drones, and the wormhole its sitting on. Now what? I could warp in, but I will get dragged in to a bubble and possibly decloaked. Balls to it, I'll locate the towers, do a bit of scouting. That makes for a good adventure. My notes help a bit, my last visit only being a week ago, although I still need to find a new tower erected since then. That done, though, I wonder what to do next. And whose probes those are on d-scan.

What the hell, I'll scan that other signature. It's another wormhole, sans fleet, letting me warp freely to it and see the static exit to Aridia. Well, what a choice, Aridia or getting caught by a fleet. Ah, what the second level of hell, I'll warp to the fleet. Rather than warp to the wormhole, though, I'll warp to a ship that may perhaps not be inside the bubbles. I choose you, Hyperion Innerzone Shipping Edition! Sure enough, I am dragged to the edge of one of the warp bubbles, but thankfully not in to one of the three canisters strategically placed to catch curious fools.

Fleet sits in wait on a wormhole from high-sec Domain

The large warp bubbles are nice and big, which only helps me now because all of the ships in the fleet are kilometres away from my cloaked Proteus, which can stay cloaked as I crawl away from the bubbles and further from the fleet. They are crowding a K162 wormhole from high-sec Domain, by the looks of it, perhaps even from Amarr considering the attention they are paying. At first glance, there is not much I can do. Looking a little closer, there still isn't, really.

I could try to crawl in to the bubble, decloak to get the fleet's attention, and hopefully unexpectedly aim only for the Magnate, hoping to crack it open before it panic-jumps to high-sec, before doing that myself. However, this wormhole would then be my only entrance back to w-space, I would certainly have their attention, and all for a crappy frigate kill. That's if I can crawl through the bubbles and fleet to get in range of the Magnate and wormhole in the first place. I dare say it's not worth trying.

Hyperion Innerzone Edition

Thankfully, to stop me thinking further about being stupid, the Magnate bounces around the three bubbles, out of jump range of the wormhole. If I didn't know any better, I'd say he was unanchoring the hardware in preparation of the fleet standing down. It certainly looks that way, and even if they aren't going straight away I can safely say I won't be using this K162, and probably not the static wormhole either, not if this is the locals' response. Maybe if they had more to play with at home they wouldn't get so bored. Never mind, it's late, and I've seen plenty of ships whizzing around tonight, even if I've not really done owt.

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