Pleased with her theft of a Hyperion-class Gallente battleship, the shadowy capsuleer left the station, about to embark on the ship's maiden voyage.
The capsuleer groaned as she undocked to find a squadron of three Hurricane battlecruisers awaiting her.
"Prepare to die, thief!" the message blipped in her local channel, giving her all the warning she needed.
She willed her damage control module to go online as well as her guns to start tracking the three 'canes. The battlecruisers, comparatively agile to the Hyperion, orbited her at a close range, their medium autocannons shredding through her shield's weak resistances.
Her rack of eight electron blaster cannons began shooting the closest hurricane as a firing solution was formulated by the ship's onboard computer, firing with a shuddering *whomp*. The accelerated particles hit their mark perfectly, dealing a wrecking shot to the first assailant. Armour groaned under the force of the attack, another volley loading to be fired just a few second later.
"Shit, drones!" the capsuleer thought to herself, forgetting all about her flight of mark II Hammerhead combat drones. She again willed her ship to release the remote vessels, directing them towered the second Hurricane with guns blazing.
She smiled as the first ship was shot to pieces, eventually exploding into an explosive ball of plasma. One down, two to go. The large guns rotated in their hardpoints, aiming towards the third battlecruiser, when a warning blared inside her pod. "Armour status critical."
She had forgotten to power her armour repair modules! Swiftly willing the two nanite injectors to began reshaping her hull's thick plating. "The capacitor is empty." She swore in as many languages she knew, turning on the final modules: her capacitor boosters. A quick surge of power brought her ship back into the game, ensuring the battlecruisers' energy neutralizers did not cripple her chances.
Out of the corner of her vision, she watched the second 'cane explode under the fire of her drones.
"Attack the third, now!" she yelled, as if it would make a difference. She heard soft blips as each drone confirmed her vocal command.
She could hear the scream as the third ship was destroyed, incinerating the capsule within. Well, she imagined she could hear it.
Taking a deep breath and recalling her drones, the capsuleer sat in utter silence as her heart beat at an astounding rate, adrenaline finally subsiding from the riveting five minutes of combat.
Foolishly, she closed her eyes for a minute, not thinking to check the list of pilots in the system, as three more battlecruisers warped to her location. She almost cried to herself, but bit her bottom lip and again aimed her guns, carefully remembering to activate all of her modules. She was just about to fire, when a warning sound clicked, her onboard AI speaking in a brash tone.
"The module has run out of charges."
Its 0500 Zulu and pretty quiet. INIT. controls the station during this hour so its all blued up right now. After having tried to catch a couple Cynabals and a Vaga in HLW with her Rapier and Widow combo she heads back to G-0.
"Guess I'll get back in the Malediction."
Sitting outside the station, our pilot spots a Crusader at a tactical and burns for it...
Continue Reading Pirate Gone Null
My eyes shifted through space, separated, multiple, roaming. My eyes were my camera drones. The feeling of looking in several directions at once was something I was not quite yet used to as I was only a few months old since my rebirth.
I did not feel the pod fluid I was suspended in, nor did I feel my body. I felt space through the engines of my Rifter, saw it via the camera drones surrounding it and perceived what I could not see through the on board scanners of the ship. It felt powerful. It felt free. I was the ship, and the Rifter responded to my every whim as it danced across the stars.
And now, for the first time, I was on the hunt.
Up until now I stayed in the secure parts of space, securing resources, making money and working on contacts. But the call of the lawless frontier was impossible to ignore. It pulled at me as my mining lasers consumed a precious asteroid and disturbed my dreams as I rested in my station quarters. Finally, I had to make the jump. I settled into my pod and waited patiently as it was installed aboard my Rifter-class frigate. It was my first solo combat flight in this ship class, but I trusted my instincts.
A minute later, the station launch catapult spat me into space. I warped my ship to the nearby gate and activated it. I brushed the low-security space Concord warning aside as it appeared in my mind. A bubble appeared around my ship. Then the unmistakable feeling of being both everywhere and nowhere consumed me as the gate activated.
The disorientation of a gate jump was still there, but it was not the stomach-turning event I first experienced a few months ago. My mind quickly went back to my scanners, while another part of my mind reached for the camera drones and looked around. Concord's pilot registry showed three people in the system except for myself. Two were branded criminals, one was not. I willed my ship into a warp towards the first planet at the system, exiting it 100km from the common orbit our ships are programmed to enter. My subconscious was already hard at work. Realizing that our minds could effectively run several processes at once (especially with the help of the ship's computers) was an important part of being a capsuleer. As I was looking around via my camera drones, still somewhat in awe with the beauty of space, the back of my mind was operating the directional scanner. Suddenly, that part of my mind demanded focus. An Incursus-class frigate was on scan. I conjured up the system map in my mind, with the size of the system and the scan resolution I used, it was obvious that the ship was in the belts of this very same planet. The Rifter's guns twitched as my excitement levels rose and Adrenaline pumped through my veins. A mute command, and the Rifter picked up speed, aligned to warp, and broke through the light speed barrier.
I came out of warp to an empty belt. My prey was not here. I was disappointed, and scanned around again. The Incursus was still on scan. My lack of experience showed, however: I warped without zeroing in on my prey first and tried to find him by pure luck rather than clever method.
However, sometimes, all you need is luck.
The equivalent of a proximity alarm went off in my brain. That was my ship indicating to me that I had company. An Incursus class-frigate was exiting warp in the very belt I was. How fortuitous. The engines on my Rifter came alive as I threw the ship into a hard turn. Then instinct took over.
I barely remember reaching across the stars to grab at the Incursus with my Warp Scrambler, and I do not recall even thinking about my weapons as I guided the Rifter into a tight orbit around my prey. Nonetheless, the three 150mm auto cannons spat death at the Gallente frigate before the pilot could even react to what was happening. I remember feeling the sting of weapon impacts as the target's blasters came alive and suddenly feeling heavy and sluggish as his Stasis Webifier activated, but the hits were sporadic, I did not care for speed, and my shield status never dropped below 70%.
Then, as rapidly as it started, it was over. The Incursus was an expanding cloud of dust and debris. My own guns were silent. A notification flashed in my brain about my Concord security status being lowered. I did not care. I tried to reach for the capsule of my foe, but he was too quick. In under a minute, he was no longer registered in the system.
I started calming down. A quick scan showed me that the wreck of the Incursus had enough intact parts to be nearly worth my entire Rifter. Some of these parts were Cruiser weapons. His loot from previous engagements, perhaps.
The Rifter came to life again after I picked through the wreckage as I engaged my warp drive. I warped to another planet, making a note of a location in the middle of nowhere. As I landed at the planet, I quickly warped again, back to that spot I just made a mental bookmark of.
I checked my security status. I was branded a criminal. I could not exit the system for about 12 more minutes.
As I waited, I realized one thing:
I felt alive.
There I was in Unpas, sitting in my Nemesis bomber looking for some cans to flip because my corp's latest war just finished. I scan down a couple of cans, but the two I see are both Retrievers paired with a hauler, so little chance of any fighting from those two.
Finally, I see a Hulk and a can all alone in the last belt. I warp in cloaked, and see that the Hulk has a couple of mining drones out and a couple of Hammerheads. Deciding that I'm sure that I can outrun hammers if I need to, I sneak up to the can. Just my luck, a full can of ore! I flip the can, and wait about 20 klicks off it for the Hulk to react.
Six to seven minutes go by, and no reaction. I tell myself that he's hold is filling up and that he'll figure out the flip soon, since he must be AFK. Suddenly, the Hulk gathers his drones and warps to a station. Great, I say to myself, if he didn't see the flip I'll be getting another Badger II or if he did I'll watch him just mine and run for another ten minutes.
Looking at my scanner, I see his Hulk disappear, and start refreshing it to see whether or not his hauler comes out. I see a Drake pop up, and start cursing, cause my mates aren't around to help me with the Drake and I'm not taking on this baddy alone. Luckily the Drake warped somewhere to mission run, but then I see an Orca, and think that the Orca must be for another mining op in system.
Nay, the Orca drops into the belt, and my heart races. Please take the can, I think, I would be insanely happy to kill an Orca. He takes the can and I instantly uncloak and lock him up. Disruptor, and target painter start running while my first volley of torps impacts his shields. Three more volleys and he's into armor. Now comes the hard part, as he's armor and structure take about eighteen volleys of torps to finally pop him. He convos me later and says good kill, he really shouldn't mine when he's half asleep.
My corpmates congratulate me and curse me for my luck, and for a four month old character I feel great about this kill.
Space-time warped around the bow of Khis’s ship as the microwarp drive opened the fourth dimension, allowing a speed unattainable by conventional propulsion. Unfortunately, however, it just wasn’t enough. The nightmare’s incredible lasers chased his ship wherever it maneuvered, each hit striking with impossible accuracy and burning away more and more armor. “Get out of here!” Schaa screamed at him. “We can’t sustain any more, were bugging out!” Khis’s heart sank when he looked through the cockpit window. His fleet entering warp, one by one, until he was the only one left with Eilyin. Suddenly, the webifiers were turned on him. The he was thrown out of the pilot’s chair as his ship slowed to a crawl. “NO!” The full firepower of the nightmare was turned on his ship now. The lasers burned so bright, he had to cover his eyes. He heard the distinctive hiss of boiling tritanium. Nothing left to do, no hope, and no help. Khis took off his headset and sat on the ground, waiting for a laser to find the warp drive and break the seal.
Continue Reading Warheads, pt. 2
Continue Reading Warheads
“Eilyin knows your tools of war. Don’t expect another one when you lose it.” The guard with the scarred face gave her a shove, and she made the rest of the walk herself. She had no illusions about the reason for this sudden ‘generosity’. A brand new ship... But what’s with this awful fit they gave me? At least they have the decency to replace my faction guns... Could I use them inside the hangar? No, no doubt they have 1600’s trained on me right now. I think I’ve had enough of this place. She coaxed the ship out of the hangar as fast as she could manage.
Continue Reading Can only be one
“My crew is ready to unload- how much should we expect to find?”
“16,080 Kilos. Tell your boys to check the turret barrels, too, they forget to unpack those sometimes.”
“Will do. Should be quite a few hours.”
“Copy.” Khis stood up from his chair and stretched. “I’m headed to the mess hall”, He told the co-captain. A low rumble filled the cockpit as the heavy blast doors slid open.
Meanwhile, halfway across the galaxy...
Fear was always hard for her to experience. It was such an awkward emotion. It made her feel weak. Anger, on the other hand, came much more naturally and frequently. It empowered her. It fueled her in whatever she did. Being a killer would chip away at almost any person, yet anger dulled the pain and allowed her to endure a very long career as a pirate. A career that probably will end soon. So as she sat in her lavish chair, guns pointed at her chest, with one of the coldest humans in the galaxy a mere meter in front of her, she felt no fear and no anxiety. They were drowned out and replaced with an anger that would cause a lesser woman to jump out of her seat and rip out Eilyin’s eyeballs. At first, he said nothing. But after a few moments of silence, he took the cigar out of his mouth and smiled. Very Arrogantly. As if to say, ‘you’re mine’. Guess what, asshole- you have no idea what will come to you. “You know, Schaa, I can’t understand you.” He put out the cigar. “No words? Nothing to say.” Your eyes convey strength. Strength in what? Ruthlessness is your only strength “I always thought you were one of the smarter ones. But lately, you’ve been proving me so wrong.”
“I have nothing to say to you. You know what I did and why I did it.”
“But I don’t. You knew who you were fucking with and you knew the consequences, yet you did it anyway. And for what? To spite me? To appease your brief appetite for justice?” He chuckled. “No, I think you’ve just gotten impulsive and stupid.”
“Maybe I just wanted to prove you’re not as powerful as you think you are...” She glared into his eyes “Or maybe it’s because those mercs were Caldari.” Yes. She thought. That got to him. She knew that some of the mercs had been militia buddies with Eilyin, long ago. He had to pause for a moment, and she thought she almost saw him choke up. “Do you want to play that game? Because I find it funny that you would bring that up, when you’ve done far more than I have for the State. Forgetting about that little favor you did me, all those years ago?”
Now she choked. Damn you, Eilyin. I’ve had brain surgery to erase that memory. Damn you straight to hell. The memories, distant and deliberately forgotten, grew and grew in her mind until it ached. It was years and years ago... She tried to convince herself. I was young and weak and desperate... I had no choice, I had no option... And the realization of what she had done flooded into her conscious. For her sin, there was no forgiveness and no excuse. Schaa, the famous pirate, killer of hundreds, woman who drives fear into her prey, felt for the first time the true weight of pure guilt. And for the first time in her life, she cried.
Years and years ago. I was a young girl. Fresh and bloodthirsty, but completely broke. I had just lost all my money in the militia, and I needed a job. My low security status, coupled with my combat record, didn’t make me very appealing to corperations. Who wants a girl pilot with no skills and no ISK? I needed a job, and Eilyin made me an offer I couldn’t refuse: 30 Million ISK, for just one little job. I didn’t even need a ship. When I walked into his office, this office, for the first time, and he told me the job, I almost turned it down. My soul still wasn’t completely melted away, and I had a hard time accepting what I had to do. ‘It’s simple’, he told me. ‘Kill the Officer’ - Officer Okhenemir- The Gallente war hero who obliterated Caldari and Amarr armies and led the fleet on a crusade, gaining more and more territory every day. Eilyin never told me his intentions for the job, but I knew why he wanted me to do it. I had strong ties with Okhenemir’s administration. He had strong business ties with the State; the Caldari lose the war, and he loses his business. Slavery, Oppression, he didn’t care what the Caldari and Amarr were up to. I had to accept, there was no other option. The last thing I remember was setting up the clone contract and getting a low-wave brain scan, recording memories for the future me. I don’t know how I did it, but when I woke up days later, I read the news. Officer Okhenemir had been killed; blown up in his office along with a dozen others. No suspects. The money was already in my account, and a new ship was waiting in my hangar. I took it to lowsec and never came back.
Eilyin saw her pain and seemed to bask in it. His only response was a light chuckle. “Do you know how long you’ve been in stasis, Schaa?”
She didn’t answer.
“A month. Do you feel your muscles starting to decay? Do you feel your mind melting? I was going to put you in permastasis...”
The hairs on her hands shot up.
“...But I decided you’re more useful to me awake. There is another job I need you to do. After Khis escaped, he got a job as a cargo runner for SDA.”
What?“My intel tells me that Khis is delivering to highsec in record amounts, and Ossin’s sales in highsec have exploded. He’s beginning to squeeze out Vigor. That can’t happen.”
I know exactly what you want me to do, you little shit. No! Not a chance in hell.He knew what she was thinking. “I assume you can figure out the rest. And before you accept, just to escape and hide, consider the alternative.”
The hate inside her raged like a furnace.
“I will catch you, Schaa. Sooner or later, I will catch you. And I’ll put you in stasis until your brain rots.”
Now, fear crawled over her skin like a plague.
Continue Reading Welcome aboard
...I just might start going to a church now, he thought. His head was still swimming, almost dizzy from the recent events. He wanted to go back and help her, surely she would need it, but he could not miss his last chance at escape; his unbelievable luck had probably run dry this time. The warp drive deactivated and the massive stargate appeared. Without hesitating, he jumped. Warped to the next one. Jumped again. Over and over until I’m safe. Through Flari, through Agordon, through Jemp, through Tomisaris. He finally arrived at a gate leading to secure space. Never before have I been so eager to be swallowed by a wormhole. A brief moment of total darkness, and the heavens appeared all around him. He looked at the stars and breathed a sigh of relief when he saw a CONCORD ship slowly lumber in the distance. “I need a new job...” Khis said to himself. “Maybe I’ll give a shot at the other side of the law...”
She chuckled when the first one blew up; it was almost too easy. She laughed when the next one popped; a bit of a challenge, but she’d seen worse. But before she could finish the third, two more showed up; ships that were bigger than the first three. Not fuckin’ fair! They threw E-war drones her way; her guns now wouldn’t keep up with the sharp orbits. She was triple-webbed. But my tank is holding for now, that’s all that matters. Then four more ships showed up, and Schaa’s heart sank. She saw how the battle would unfold even before it happened. Antimatter charges plowed into her ship from all sides. Within 30 seconds, it had dissipated entirely. Then the entire structure shivered as chunks of armor were blown away. She knew she had already lost. But when she had 30% hull, the guns stopped firing. She knew was that meant immediately. “These fuckers are gonna ransom ME?” Her Comm. Unit bleeped. “How much, assholes?”
“How about Khis’s head. On a platter.” She paused. Fuck. FUCK!
“It’s been a long time, Eilyin.”
“Almost too long Schaa. I just wanted to say hi, and ask why the hell you attacked my boys?”
“They were bullying my friend.”
“Since when did start sticking up for the little guys? Or have friends? If there is one thing you should have learned, it’s to not fuck with my business.”
“The debt was nothing, Eilyin. You probably spent that much hunting him down.”
“Debts are always paid, or people die. No exceptions are made, Schaa, and not only did you help him get away, you killed some of my favorite hunters.”
She knew he was boiling with rage inside, but his voice didn’t show a trace of emotion. He continued, “You should be smarter than that, Schaa. I thought your people knew the limits; where your hunting ground ends and my control begins. You fucked with my business, Schaa. Now you’re gonna die.”
An interdictor warped in, and she gasped. That can only mean one thing. As the mercs resumed tearing through her ship, a disruption sphere was fired. “You think podding me is gonna teach me a lesson? You think I’m afraid to die? Go to hell!”
“I have better things planned for you. Bitch.”
Her ship burst violently and the pod immediately rocketed away from the sphere as fast as possible, but she knew it was just too late. A few seconds later, she was webbed, and she knew it was the end. The end for this lifetime, anyway. Another Schaa will be soon born back at the station. It’s happened before, I don’t mind dying again. She closed her eyes and waited. Waited for what seemed like an eternity. But no guns fired, and she noticed she was moving again. It took her just a second to realize what was happening. “No! NO! NOOOO!!” Her fate was sealed; a fate worse than death. She knew what Eilyin did with his catches... Her pod was sucked inside a cargo bay. The bubble deactivated and the mercenaries charted a course for Eiylin’s base.
All across the Heimatar region, a story has been passed down for years. It can be occasionally heard at a bar between friends or used to scare fresh pilots from the academy. I can even remember hearing it from my uncle as a kid, who added absurd details to frighten me. There have been many that question it and others who swear on its authenticity. No matter what you believe, though, you can’t escape the haunt that the story brings. For when you find yourself flying through quiet space, you will sometimes feel the tingle of your spine and the tremble of your hand.
This is the story that echoes across the cosmos...
In Illinfrik, there is said to be a mysterious ship with an even more mysterious pilot. Pilots have supposedly been killed in situations that border on fantasy, and those who are lucky enough to have clones describe the bizarre ordeal when they awaken.
One man said that he was attacked mid-warp when a ship that he had never seen before entered the warp tunnel right behind him and killed his battleship and his pod with a single shot. He claims that the ship was unlike anything he had seen before. He says that it changed shape and color and fired a weapon too small and powerful to even exist.
Another man claims to have been attacked from over 1000 KM away. According to him, the ship suddenly appeared on his local overview, but thought nothing of it until his warp drive malfunctioned and his ship was cut in half by some unknown energy beam.
But perhaps the strangest report is from Jouc Liage, a former cargo ship operator. I had to fly planet-side to get an interview with him, and he was reluctant to tell me his story. After a modest bribe, however, he cleared his throat and told me to take a seat. “I was flying my Fenrir, which was loaded with over 400 million ISK worth of cargo, and I was escorted by a dozen battlecruisers.” He seemed nervous as he tells his story, and kept his gaze fixed on something behind my head. “We were in mid-warp, with no indication of trouble.” He says. “Then we all suddenly drop out of warp, halfway to our destination. All the pilots were scrambling to figure out what happened, when a strange ship just appeared about 3 km in front of me. It was about the size of a cruiser, had no windows, and shone dark purple in the sunlight. But the strangest part was the hull; it bended and shifted and snaked constantly, like a psychedelic sculpture. My Security team could not target it, and my scanner was going insane. The readings fluctuated from 10 kg to over 700,000,000 kg several times a second, combat drones flew away from it, and my computer thought that it was a crate of turkey.” Jouc leaned forward and looked and the ground. “I received a message on my comm. Unit, but it an unintelligible string of letters and numbers. I responded, saying ‘We don’t mean no harm, just tell us what you want.’ But as soon as I sent it, all of my escort ships started shooting each other! Not only that, the ship hit me with a single blast and my entire ship was vaporized!” He lit up a cigarette. “It was the freakiest shit I had ever seen. I couldn’t even imagine it in my nightmares. When my clone awoke, the doctors said I was screaming violently, and I had to be restrained”. Jouc declined any further questions from my interview. Since the incident, Jouc got a job as a waiter and has not left his home planet.
The only thing that is known about this mysterious being is that it has never been seen at a stargate or station, only attacks targets bigger than itself, and supposedly will not attack a ship if an Amarrian is onboard. Even the elusive Jovian nation has denied the existence of such a ship, and nobody is sure if there is only the one or if there are others like it. Reports of the ship only occur in Illinfrik, and there haven’t been any sighting or attacks in the last 6 years. The safety of pilots in the system is not guaranteed, though. The entity may decide, for whatever reasons, to terrorize New Eden once more...
This story unfolds from the perspectives of two different people- a jaded pirate named Schaa and her prey, a desperate pilot named Khis
Schaa sat on the edge of the bed, her forehead resting on her palms. Her breathing came in short and labored bursts as the nightmare she had just woken from echoed in her mind. She fumbled around her pockets and withdrew a pack of cigarettes. Deep breath, the smoke feels good in my lungs. Much better. She glanced up at the mirror in front of her. She looked at the dark circles under her eyes and the wrinkles that crawled over her face. She blew out her smoke and inhaled some more. What’s wrong with me- am I questioning myself? She thought. Am I ashamed of what I have become? Why this guilt after all these years. She gazed deeper into her own reflection. I have survived when countless others had failed. I have amassed fortunes after the rest of my family died in poverty. I have done many bad things, and thrived in a galaxy of greed, despair and opportunity. I am a survivor, and that matters above all. I have killed so that I may live. I am only doing as nature programmed me. She kept staring, but wanted to turn away. Could barely stomach that disappointment when she looked at her reflection. The self-assurance didn’t help much, because all she could see in herself were the things she hated most: desperation and weakness. The years of piracy and killing had taken its toll on Schaa, and now the dead that used to haunt her conscious now haunt her dreams, too. The cigarette glowed as she inhaled more smoke, and by now the cloud had filled her small room. I wonder if other pirates feel this way too... if they do, it doesn’t stop them. Why should it stop me? There is no time in this world for self-pity. She mashed the cig in the ashtray and stood up. No time to mourn the dead. She put on a fresh set of clothes and turned on the air vent fan. No time to feel remorse for the stupid, slow, naive, or unfortunate. She proudly put on her old dog tags, the one thing besides her ship that had any value to her, and took another look in the mirror, This time there was no pity, there was only the face of a killer looking back, the dark eyes of a hunter gazing into your soul. She left her room and began the long walk through the station, back to the hanger. Just another day for a pirate. Just another fortune to be made.
Men in desperation make choices that make or break their life. Lasers seared away Khis’s repair drones. I needed the money, so what did I do? I borrowed from a shady criminal. Stupid, Khis, stupid stupid stupid. He panicked as the warp drive wouldn’t respond and his shield tank was quickly melting away “As soon as Eilyin gets the money, we leave you alone.” Khis heard over the comm., but he doubted the people shooting him would really stop even if he did wire the money over. Now missiles pounded his armor. “Tell your boss that I gave him everything! Tell him I can work for him, my death isn’t necessary!” Khis was screaming into the comm. now, but he doubt it would do any good. He heard a chuckle and a cold-hearted reply. “I’m not your messenger, I’m your killer...” The last of Khis’s armor was blown apart, and now his hull was being blasted. He knew this was the end. This was how he was going to die; an unpaid loan. My life is about to end over a fifteen million ISK, chump change to a criminal like Eiylin. He closed his eyes and bowed his head and prepared for the eternal cold of space, prayed that his crew perish in peace. But instead he was greeted by the most beautiful sound he had ever heard; “Warp drive online”. He looked up at the mercenary ships, and saw that they were under attack! What the HELL? A roaming pirate gang had warped in, seconds from his destruction and engaged his killers- Wide-eyed with disbelief, Khis immediately entered warp towards the nearest stargate and prayed that they wouldn’t catch up. Thank god for those pirates. Let their deaths be swift and peaceful. Khis knew how good these mercs were; he knew the battle wouldn’t last long.
“It’s all I have!” Schaa had heard that one countless times. Even when they’re trapped in a burning ship with a broken tank, they still think they can bluff their way out of destruction. It’s all I have... please, pity doesn’t work with pirates. The measly ransom probably isn’t worth half the cargo, anyway. So Schaa blew the ship out of the sky. No pod, strange, usually they hire capsuleers to pilot these ships. That means lots of dead crew members. But she never worried about those. A lot of them are secretly slaves anyway. The loot revealed nothing special, so it was left to drift in space. Schaa was starting to get restless- hours of waiting in my usual hunting grounds, and all I managed to kill was this worthless ship and a few foolish Gurista recruits- and they practically begged me to kill them with the crap formations they had. Screw Gurista. Real pirates don’t send fresh pilots to do their dirty work. I used make a living killing those wannabes, but there’s no good pay in law enforcement. Schaa fiddled with the dog tags around her neck. Then the militia- now that was a job I should have kept- wiping the galaxy clean of those religious freaks. But they’d never take me back, not with my record. She grinned as she remembered her days as a warrior for the republic. Rewards were shit, and I lost plenty of ships, but nothing else was more satisfying. I wish more of those pious fuckers would come in my system; I love to pop their pretty little ships-
She was getting impatient. If there is one thing a pirate can’t stand, it’s inactivity. Ships aren’t gonna blow themselves up. She thought. That’s my job, so I better start hunting. She began her patrol of the local asteroid belts and stargates, hoping for the usual sucker to forget to check the scanners...
Khis’s hands were clammy as he gripped the controls, while the sweat from his forehead dripped down his nose. He would drop out of warp any second now, and he had no idea if there were reinforcements at the gate. He said a silent prayer, and stopped in front of the warp gate. A quick look revealed no enemies- no, the mercs ambushed me, they wouldn’t need to set a trap here... Khis jumped through the gate the moment the wormhole opened, not caring where it led. Anywhere would be safer than here.
His ship sat in a small asteroid field, with nothing but omber rocks to keep him company. As the camera drone circled his ship, he became more and more awestruck that his ship survived- Shield, 3% and rising. Armor, completely gone, and the cracked hull was leaking debris and plasma into space. It would take hours to fix this damage, and trying to dock in an unknown station in nullsec would be suicide, especially when I would be such an easy target. My rep drones are gone, so it looks like this will take a while... His single armor repair unit activated and nanobots swarmed his ship, all the while he kept his attention on the local overview and prayed his unbelievable luck would stay with him.
“These People are getting to smart” Schaa became angry at her incredible misfortune. Every spot she jumped to was either totally empty or packed with miners and a security squad. I can wait until they separate. But Miners tend to take all day and don’t like to stray from the pack. She didn’t dare jump into neighboring systems, because she would be shot on sight in highsec and all the other systems have bounties on her head. So she stayed in her hunting grounds and didn’t look for new territory. Maybe one of these smaller belts will hold some treasure, she thought. She began to check around the isolated pockets of asteroids, and after she dropped out of warp, she gasped with surprise. A single ship was floating motionless; its hull shot to hell and a repair module running. And it sat less than 10 km away!. This could be bait, but it’s just too easy! She grinned ear to ear at her prize catch, and she locked and scrambled it without hesitation. “You made a mistake coming here. Don’t worry though, you’ll learn your lesson”. She laughed into her comm. unit. Her guns were primed and she waited for a response.
“You made a mistake coming here. Don’t worry though, you’ll learn your lesson”. The words rang in his ears and made his skin crawl. He had narrowly escaped death from his enemies, only to be killed by a stranger. I knew my luck would run short- I knew my situation was just too good to be true. Now I have no second option, no escape, and I will pay for my stupidity. Hoping the pirate was a fool, he began to bargain for his life. “You haven’t killed me yet. Maybe because it would be too easy and you want sport. Or maybe you want a ransom, to which I would be happy to give you all that I have.” What money he had left would do no good to a dead man, so he waited for her response “Transfer it to my account. I’ll decide if you are worth it.” He quickly sent her his entire fortune- 10,280,965 ISK. She chuckled when she saw the amount- His ship wasn’t even worth half that- that offers only one conclusion- He isn’t a capsuleer, so killing his ship would end his life- permanently- no clone, no reawakening to start over again- just space and asteroids for all of time. She often pondered what it would be like to die forever, and she wondered why people who couldn’t afford clones would risk their life in space at all. Still, this man must fear death above all else if he will part with his entire life savings- no inheritance for his family, I suppose. It all disappears so he can live. “Well it’s not enough.” She felt an unexpected pang of guilt. Was that too cruel? “Then kill me. When I say it’s all I have got, I not lying. And it wasn’t even mine, it was borrowed from Eilyin Sicha. I narrowly escaped death by his hands, so death by yours will not scare me”. Khis closed his eyes and thought of his younger brothers and sisters, hoped they never became the kind of scum that would kill a man for the worthless salvage his ship would bring. But the guns still didn’t fire and the comm. channel opened again. “I see that you are Gallentian, and that all of your family fought against the Amarr.” Khis couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Did she really research me? Do all pirates do this to their victims? Or maybe she was trying to see if my family had more money...
Schaa continued. “I fought many years ago, and am proud of every one of them I killed.” She held the dirty tags in her hands- ran her fingers over the names of her fallen friends. What is this moment? I am hesitating, holding back- I am becoming WEAK! Be a KILLER, Schaa! Her finger hovered over the trigger, and for the first time in her life, she didn’t want to be a killer. At that moment, 3 ships warped into the belt, and Khis recognized them immediately- the mercs he escaped from earlier.
Oh how luck can turn.
“Thanks for capturing him- I’m surprised you didn’t shoot him on sight, considering your security status.” The merc chuckled and Schaa felt disgusted. “You will be rewarded for your assistance. You can leave now, the rest is up to us.” Schaa signed. This is the biggest mistake of my life... She reopened the comm. channel with Khis. “Eilyin is the scum of this universe. I am about to do something I have never done. I am going to help you escape, because for some reason, I feel that we are not so different.” Schaa couldn’t believe what she was doing “When I release the warp scramble, make a run for the nearest gate and don’t stop until you reach highsec”. Maybe there is a God, Khis thought to himself. “I.. I don’t know what to-”. “Don’t. Go, just go. Pay off Eilyin Sicht, and stay out of trouble” Schaa transferred the money back into Khis’s account and aligned her ship toward the mercs. To their surprise, she targeted one of them and opened fire. “What is this bitch DOING!” As they struggled to realign their guns, Khis warped away. The last thing he saw was the pirate who saved his life, his guardian angel locked in battle with the demons.
"He was... everything I had... My love, gone in an instant... I must get revenge" Such are the words of one of the journal's sitting on top of my navigation system. It's my hobby; I collect the data logs from downed enemy ships. Its possible that I just don't like to see people lose their life, so I hoard parts of them in remembrance. Perhaps I Just don't like killing, but I must. I must scrape for a living, doing anything I can, no matter how evil. For that is the life of an outlaw. It is a sad, pathetic existence, and something I am ashamed of. The worst part is I'm innocent.
The fateful day began just as any other would. I woke up, grabbed some breakfast and a bottle of Quafe to satisfy my never ending addiction. It jump starts my day, so I can do what is most important, making a living as a trader. I have recently finished a few classes on piloting the Pilgrim. I thought it would be nice to take a break from the Obelisk, that slow moving piece of garbage. The Pilgrim has a fearsome reputation because of a few not so appreciated people in Lonetrek. So I walk towards it, excited to take it out for a test run before I try any combat. Unfortunately, that was not my fate for this day. A Concord General is standing next to my ship with a pamphlet and pen in his hands, writing. "What are you doing general?" He didn't answer. Instead he pointed at my ship, then proceeded to write. apparently I was parking in his spot. This is not a good thing in New Eden. He was writing a ticket.
General's can do anything they want, but get frowned upon by the public. Maybe that is the reason so many people just wish to be just officers. The general asked if he could search my ship. I strictly told him that I do not consent to any searches. He simply grinned at me and had his way. He stole my holo-key and opened the loading ramp. At this point, I was panicking. Because I noticed a suspicious looking brown package sitting in the middle of my cargo hold. He proceeded towards it, and picked it up and looked at me. "Do you know what this is, son?" "No sir, its not mine." I am pretty sure we both knew that it was a smuggling pack for boosters. He opened it up and confirmed his suspicions. I looked at him, and he looked at me. I knew I was in HUGE trouble. So, as quick as lightning I whipped out my blaster and shot him 3 times dead in the chest. He falls to the floor with plasma burns around the holes in his chest. Swiftly, I kick him out of my hold back into the station floor and jump start my engines. I am officially a fugitive now, and I need to make a quick escape or I am doomed. I flip on my afterburners and whiz out of the station. I'm only 15 kilometers away from it when i notice Concord ships hot on my tail. Now since by profession I am a trader, I supply the nearby low-sec systems for outlaws. So I know there is a .4 security system 1 jump away. Safety... At least from the police. I'm searching through the solar system map, "It's not fast enough! Hurry up dammit!" Pissed off, I align my ship to a random stargate without the help of my NAV, hoping to have the right coordinates for the stargate. I pound the warp button just in time to escape a flurry of torpedoes from Concord!
"God is in my favor today", I say as I approach the stargate to low sec. As soon as I jump through I am blinded by the Sun. It is so close to the gate that I can feel the heat resonating from it! My sensors say 134,556km. I feel as if I am melting, so I close the observation window, relying on the structure of my ship to bear it until I can get to safety. Hah, safety.. in low sec? Well, as a fugitive, it is safer than high sec. I load up the bounty board on my computer and notice I moved from the capsuleer list, to the outlaw list. "Hmph, figures..." Then I almost do a double take as I look at the bounty on my corpse. 1,034,864,009 ISK! Normally I am not one prone to feinting. But believe me, I almost did. I look at the records and see it was posted by the general's immediate family. I thought to myself, "They posted it so quick its as if they knew it would happen!"I forgot to re-cloak as I jumped through the system, so when I naturally de-cloaked from jumping, I was greeted by a friendly Dominix Pilot. I pop open my observation window, willing to get a view of his actions while ignoring the pain from the sun. I see what appears to be a swarm of drones heading for my direction. He is not so friendly after all.
Instinctively, I start to approach him at an angle in order reduce my transversial. While at the same time, I pop my drones out in order to kill his. I'm into armor by the time I get into optimal of him. I flicked on my neutralizers in order to take his cap out, because for some reason, I knew he was running an active tank. Sooner than later, His tank starts to break as his capacitor is struggling to repair his armor faster than my drones can chew. My tank is holding, because he has no more drones, and no energy to fire his blasters. Predator is now the prey, or should I say... a sitting duck.
With him at my mercy, I decided that since I am an outlaw, I might as well finish him off. Besides, he attacked me first! His armor is gone, now going into structure! The heat seems to magnify by 10 times as his Dominix blows up. The heat from the explosion and the heat from the sun start to melt my fragile communication antenna. I must leave quick. Should I pod him or not? A few seconds pass, and my decision is made. He is going down. I start up my sensor booster and begin to target him. I lock onto him and engage. A quick 2 seconds it took for my drones to rip through the fragile shell of a life pod and end the life of a..... Woman? I accelerate towards the corpse and my horrors are confirmed. I don't kill women. I feel terrible and helpless about the event. I loot the wreck without looking what it holds, and put it all in my cargo hold. But nevertheless, I head back to a planet, cloaked, to absorb what just occurred.
In warp, I feel a wetness on my cheek.. A tear.. "Dammit! My first kill just had to be a woman!"
I do come to realize that had I stopped shooting her, I would be dead, and not her. The roles would be reversed.
Later that night, I pass out in the cargo hold, drunk. When I wake in the morning. I notice a strange book laying on the floor.
I began to read it... "He was... everything I had... My love, gone in an instant... I must get revenge". At this statement, I realize that behind the fury of those drones, she was a person too. A mother, a Wife, to... someone. This makes me feel worse...
A few months go by, and I've learned a few tricks of the trade. I allied myself with an outlaw corporation nearby. We do gate camps, ransoming, stealing... The whole 9 yards. Now I feel no pain when I kill. Now I feel no mercy. But I do not like it. Such emotions are acquired traits. Outlaws are made, not born. But still, the journal sits on my Nav, as a constant reminder of the person who I used to be, and the woman who used to be. I sit back and relax, as I drink a bottle of Quafe, to relieve my addiction, and continue reading the journal...
So to this end I brought forth Saint Juliana, to strike righteous revenge on the piratical denzins of high sec.
I thought I would give some newbie pirates a surprise, and loaded a Bellicose with ancillary current routers. I wanted 4 midslots, so that I could fit a propulsion mod, dual webs, and a scrambler. To ensure nothing could escape my grasp. I fitted a Medium neut so that the helpless frigate would be capless - to let my 8 warrior 1 (some spare incase of getting webbed and killed), 2x dual 180mm autocannons and launcher chip away at them.
The extra grid rigs let me fit a 1600mm plate for my tank. A formidable opponent for any can-flipping frig. Well, I mined, and mined, a couple of days without response.
When this evening I decided to actively seek out the flippers myself, rather than let them come to me.
Saint undocked the Bellicose in Amarr, a bustling market hub, and scanned the nearby belts. A a few cans, hulk, arbitrator and a punisher (a notorious can flipper) on scan. Narrowing them down to a particular belt I warped in to assess the situation.
There was an arbitrator mining away with two mining lasers, and a can sitting along side. The punisher was lurking nearby, and the hulk rapidly left the area. I checked the corp details of the two pilots, while I began my own excavation of an asteriod. Nothing untoward, and no obvious friends in system.
The arbitrator locked me right away, and began some rather unsocial behaviour, bumping the Bellicose, mining my asteriod. And generally being a bastard.
My initial thought was that the punisher might be his pal, and that the arbitrator might act as a remote repair station for the formidable tank of the punisher if I engaged it.
So I thought I best even up the odds.
I quickly fitted a couple of T1 remote reps to my main Sanguine in his Arbitrator, and some medium repair drones. The Bellicose was made to kill frigs, not go toe to toe with an arbitrator, which doesn't need cap to do damage, and which has a much better tank.
By the time I had done this, and returned to Saint, I saw that the punisher had gamely tried to can flip the aggressive arbitrator, and had very rapidly been vaporised.
Well, with Sanguine entering system, I suppose I'll take a crack at it. I jettison a can, and sure enough the arbitrator flips it right away - and a hauler alt arrives and whisks my ore away almost instantly. Lock and engage. Hammerhead II's descend on Saint and rip through the shields of the basically stationary cruiser. I scurry to warp in Sanguine and get the reps on, but in the heat of the moment, the fleet menu is rather tricky to navigate. By the time he arrives, Saint is down to 50% armour, and the meager DPS of the Bellicose has just cracked the Arbitrators shields. Overload Reps, and armour repair bots are engaged.
Saints tank now holding, she continues to chip away at the arbitrator, now webbing his drones, and sending 4xwarrior 1's to ping away at them. He is too smart for that and recalls them, and considering he is at 200m from Saint, they are instantly deployed again. Saints Bellicose tank is holding barely, perhaps she can hold long enough to chip away at him? But the cunning arbitrator has neuts fitted, and the Bellicose's meager cap is now gone. As the damage control goes offline, and Sanguine too runs out of cap, she drops into structure. Damage control back online, another cycle of the remote armor repairer, but its too late. Pop goes the Bellicose.
The arbitrator by this time is at about 60% armour of what is clearly a buffer tank, and without hesitation he aggresses Sanguine.
Although it was a quick fit, Sanguine has a medium nos fitted, and 3 Cap rechargers. As well as a medium armor repper. So cap shouldn't be a problem this time around. I launch my own flight of Hammerhead II's and we go toe to toe. Sanguines armour is dropping, unable to quite tank the damage from the Hammerheads, but I have yet to overload. We slug away at each other, but I can see I have the upper hand. The aggressor hits structure first, I begin to overload at about 10% armour remaining. He pops with a satisfying explosion.
I give him a GF in local, but he is out of there, Amarr is full of spam anyhow.
An enjoying skirmish, I came out slightly ahead isk-wise due his collection of drones. My Bellicose was tripple rigged, which was a little excessive, and his arbi was tripple tri-marked. If I were to make a crime fighting Duo between Saint and Sanguine I would do away with the 1600mm plate and rigs, and add 2 x EAN and a damage control instead. And put t2 remote repps on Sanguine, as well as repping rigs so I could perma-run the cap. But it was a split second rapid fit with what I had in the hanger. I mean I COULD bring Sanguine in a RR Dominix, but where is the fun in that?
I would still pit the solo Bellicose against any frigs, probably even 2 frigs at once - with the fitting. But if people are game to can flip an arbi, maybe I should switch to them. Sure would make it easier.
Fun and games, I hope for many more.
I jumped in a Rifter, outfitted it with the basics, 3 200m ACs, a nosferatu, and a speed build. I jumped into a couple systems, checking the belts and stations. I wasn't going to waste time scanning. I wanted to kill. I needed to feel the adrenaline pounding through my veins.
I warped into a new belt. Another Rifter about 40 km distant. Ratting...was he alone? Was he waiting for someone? I decided it didn't matter. If they came...I could deal with them. I decided to take him down.
Already i could feel the adrenaline coursing through me. My heart pounding, i raced towards him at over a kilometer a second. I crouched low in the cramped frigate's captain's seat, hoping and praying he would be too busy killing the Destroyer rat he was firing at. I streaked like a bolt of lightning across the void that separated us.
15km! I targeted the Rifter and engaged the warp disruptor as i flew past the 10km mark and flicked on the webifier. Flying in tight circles from 1km around his ship i pounded his shields to nothing in seconds, ripped through his armor and tore at the fragile support struts. Before he even locked onto me, before he even knew my tiny ship was in the same belt, his pod flew from the fiery wreck of his frigate. Nearly instantly, he flew to warp. Bastard!
I didn't bother tracking him down. I saw where he flew off. I took the pathetic loot, and warped to a new system, my appetite not sated, merely whetted. Time to kill.