Emboldened By Fancy Flying

What an interesting evening in the sandbox. I log in to find nothing in system but a Radar, Grav and our static wormhole. I scan to make sure that no new holes have popped up since the last scan check and board the corp Legion to harvest some anomalies that have populated our system. I don’t even manage to get through the first Frontier before being interrupted by a Loki and Hound.

I warp back to the tower and switch to a stealth bomber Oz had lying around. Everyone in the system is cloaked. I’m surprised that the intruders are not trying to harvest up the wrecks I’ve left in the anomaly. Actually now that I think about it, I don’t remember actually finishing all the sleepers in this anomaly, but there are none left to harass me now. I bookmark each wreck and warp between it and the sun or some other bookmark over and over, picking up the loot one by one. It’s slow going, but it’s safe and and I’m making my isk.

Then I see a Thrasher show up on my scanner. This looks like the salvage boat I’ve been waiting for. I jump into my Oracle and warp way out on the anomaly off a distance sniping bookmark I had made for just such an occasion. The Thrasher is there looting and I lock on to him. I blast away from about 200 km and quickly get into the ship’s armor. He is able to warp off and a Hurricane is now joining us in the anomaly. This is going to make things more interesting.

I continue the cat and mouse game for a while, warping out and back again to various bookmarks I have around the anomaly. They can never get closer than 80 km from me and I’ve managed to almost destroy the Thrasher as well as blast a bit of the shields off the Hurricane by now. I decide the only decent thing to do is pop all the wrecks they’re planning on stealing and be done with it. Once that’s done I warp to within 100 km of the wormhole and begin to orbit hoping I can manage to pick off the Thrasher now that there is no reason for it to stay in system. I get a few shots off but he manages to get away.

The Hurricane leaves, but then comes back and he almost out smarts me by warping to a celestial behind me. But I’m all too familiar with that trick and am gone before he has a chance to get back and kill me. Some times goes by and I’m in my Pilgrim now about 100 km from the wormhole. The Hurricane shows up again at what I assume is his bookmark for where he last saw me which is also about 100 km from the hole. We both start slow boating towards the hole. I’m tempted to just let him leave. I’ve been a big thorn in their side, and so far I’m on top of the isk count. But there is something about this Hurricane.

Hurricanes are a bitch. They hit damn hard, and can be a pretty tough nut to crack. I assume that he’s got his Thrasher buddy on the other side of the hole, but even that isn’t really a deterrent. I am far enough from the hole that I can align and get out of trouble before he’s a factor. My faction webber should keep the Hurricane pinned down enough that I get to dictate range and be able to escape should things turn sour. I’ve wanted to test this fit against a Hurricane for a long long time and decide now is as good a chance as any. That and my fancy flying earlier may have had my ego every so slightly inflated.

I decloak and MWD my way towards him while my drones engage him. I’ve made sure to double check my orbit distance after the little blunder I made last time I fought in my Pilgrim. Everything goes off without a hitch. I was able to visually inspect his ship and know he’s running autocannons, which don’t have a prayer of hitting me at 12 km with 2 TD II’s on him. I’ve got him webbed, disrupted and my drones are starting to eat away at him. He has a fleet of ECM drones or something on me but I don’t pay them much mind as the wormhole flares.

Alright this is what I was worried about. A second Hurricane arrives through the hole. I’ve already started to align to a celestial…or at least I think I have. Turns out I hit a wrong button somewhere. I’m 20 km away from Hurricane number 1 but I’m not aligned and I still can’t warp. A little blunder with getting my ship pointed in the right direction may have made the difference here. Still I gain on my pursuers. I manage to put 24 km between me and the closest Hurricane but their disruptors are still hitting me! This is not good. I can’t web both of them at once and Hurricane two is rapidly closing on me.

It’s only a matter of time before their able to get their claws into me and bring the mighty Pilgrim down. My pod manages to warp away safely. We exchange some ‘gfs’ in local and I try to ask them which disruptors they were using, but they’ve become tight lipped. It always kind of annoys me when your killers won’t engage in a conversation with you after a fight. Fighting is the only way to learn and get better, I know I always take the time to talk up a victim if they have questions about how I won. Oh well what can you do. It was a fun fight, a costly loss, but a fun fight anyway. I think I would have been able to secure the kill if it had remained a 1v1, but you can never count on such things. The Pilgrim will return, and my thirst for Hurricane blood has only grown as a result of today’s events!

Your Security Status Has Been Lowered

It doesn’t look like my PI is going to get setup today. I’m in the process of training for a half marathon, which eats away at about an hour after work everyday, leaving even less time than usual for roaming around in Eve. Last night was particularly unfriendly to Vult. Not only did I have to go for a run, but I was in desperate need of doing some laundry. The three episodes of Big Bang Theory probably didn’t help either.

Anyway when I finally log on I’m in my pilgrim floating in a station in the Pananan system. This is one of my usual hunting grounds, but it appears that every system around here is quiet. There is the usual traffic in Ami, but every other system is empty. It doesn’t look like much is going to happen today. I should hunker down and setup my PI but I think I’ll take a few more jumps just to make sure I’m not missing out on any fun.

Luckily I happen upon a system with a single pilot in it. After warping around for a minute or two I find a Thrasher on my scanner. The character flying it is young, just a few months old if that. This looks promising. I see a wreck pop up on my scanner just as I narrow my beam down to about 15 degrees at planet IV. There’s only one belt and I nearly break my mouse hitting the warp button. Sure enough the Thrasher is sitting in the belt next to a new wreck, but he aligns and warps out just as I’m decloaking and engaging.

Well shit…

Doubt I’m going to get another shot at him now that he’s seen the Pilgrim. It’s a funny thing flying Pilgrims. Pilots seem to just run for it. There’s no questioning it, no tempting me to bait. They just run, far and fast and hope to never see my ship again. It’s flattering in a way but not always what I’m looking for. Today our prey doesn’t seem to have the flee instinct developed yet and I warp to the second belt down from the one I found him in. There is a cruiser and two frigate rats in this belt and I’m hoping the Thrasher will engage the rats while I remain cloaked right near him.

Sure enough after a few seconds the Thrasher appears. This time I hold my cloak until I see him engage the rats. I know he’s not aligned now and I decloak and heat up my weapon systems. The warp disruptor engages along with the webber and my medium drones spill from my drone bay. He immediately starts burning away from the fight, but he hasn’t aligned to anything yet. With my MWD I can keep up with him, but he’s slowly pulling away. His shields vaporize in a couple volleys and my drones start chewing through his armor quickly. He’s out of web range now and it’s only a matter of seconds until he is going to be able to warp away. His armor disappears and the drones take him down to about 25% structure. His life is measured in fractions of a second. My chest is thundering under the excitement, which is hilarious considering the small scale of the fight. That’s why we love Eve though! Miraculously the Thrasher is able to warp away, leaving my drones to slowly crawl back to the Pilgrim unblooded.

UGH! That’s the second kill that’s gotten away from me this week. My frustration is running high but a conversation with Mr. Ambitions Stark (I think this is a Iron Man reference?) cools me down. We have a few good laughs about the fight and talk about his experiences in Eve so far. My favorite part of the conversation was a part of his corp chat he pasted that read something like…

Ambitions Stark: Hey, there’s a Pilgrim in this belt attacking me. What should I do?
Generic Corp Guy: GET THE FUCK OUT OF THERE!!!

It was a fun fight even if I didn’t manage to land a killing blow. Scaring the shit out of another pilot is always a close second in my book.