Where's Your Karma Now?

I don't believe in karma. I don't consider myself as much of an evil person, but there have been plenty of helpless victims I have liberated from their ships and pods. I am however still having great luck against real opponents (in case I don't die horribly because of stupid mistakes). Therefore, if I believed in karma, I'd have to cower in my quarters all day long, fearing the massive blow it has got to deliver anytime now.

But that would be a bit boring, wouldn't it? Which is why I rather decide to do things like going on a dual Slicer roam with Tusker comrade Kishin Hattori for example. Good choice, let me tell you...

Off we went, heading for Placid in our speedy little laser boats. The first few jumps offered nothing too particularly interesting. There had been a Caracal on a mission, but given the pilot's little experience, we didn't bother to bring a prober.

Entering Placid, targets kept making themselves rare or displayed obvious traps. Eventually, Kishin and I split up to cover more systems and hide our small, but very deadly force. It wouldn't be long until we perished any doubt about that.

While Kishin was scouting Intaki, I had a closer look into Vey. Just as I was about to move on to the next system on route, Kishin reported a Jaguar in a belt. Not wasting any time, his Slicer hurled itself into warp, going for the tackle. By the time I arrived in Intaki myself however, the target had left.

There was no time for being disappointed, as things started to liven up a bit; almost simultaniously, we scanned down a Crusader in a nearby complex. The bugger was even faster than our Slicers, though, and managed to escape.

Just then the Jaguar made a questionable move by appearing in another belt within our scan range. Finally we had something to shoot at, because this time we had it neatly pointed in time.

The ensueing fight mainly consisted of watching the Thukker Mix assault frigate squirming around without much hope to escape or even return some of the hurt. The hurt we generously donated barely made it through the Jaguar's heavy EM-resistant shields. We- no, actually I had to worry and keep a look out for potentially hostile reinforcements; knowing Kishin, he must have been hoping for some.

And just as the Jaguar went down at last, a Vexor appeared on the scene.

Since I wasn't aware of Kishin's joyful anticipation for more actually dangerous things to shoot at, I warped out after the loot had been scooped up. Kishin put a tackle on the drone boat instead (eek). Luckily, its Hobgoblins didn't cause too much damage to Kishin before I was able to rejoin him. After neutralizing the drones, we merrily began to fire at the now helpless Vexor.

As we were gnawing at yet another target with a large buffer tank and strong resistances against our lasers, a Myrmidon decided to check out what all the fuzz was about. The pilot was not an ally of the Vexor, but he chose to help the poor slob. Oh dear.

But first, the Myrmidon had to bridge a gap of roughly 100km.

We started overheating our weapons and now were throwing everything we had at the Vexor, with the Myrmidon crawling closer every second. Our laser guns were nibbling at our target's armour much too slowly for our liking. But despite our brief discordance before, Kishin and I were on the same page again: we would either take this thing down or die trying.

Eventually the Vexor entered structure - but we were far from over the hill, as Gallente ships tend to have sturdy hulls; no exception on this one.

Due to our fast orbit speed, it was hard to judge the true distance of the incoming Myrmidon. But rest assured, it was getting way too close. As I was swooping around with the Vexor reaching 50 percent hull, my trajectory lead me right into the Myrmidon's fangs: a fleet of Warrior II drones. It was here.

All my efforts immediately went into getting the hell out. I had to have my armour repair unit running beyond its capacity to buy me at least a few seconds to escape the warp disruptor range of the battlecruiser.

While I was straining my capacitor with an overheated repair unit and a micro warp drive, Aura calmly informed me of my capacitor being empty. "Shit - this is it", I thought. In a situation like this, the protocol includes measurements preventing the capsule from being harmed upon ejection: keep hammering on whatever is left of the warp drive console.

And neatly following protocol, my capsule leapt into warp shortly after. What was entirely not according to protocol, was that my Slicer was still firmly attached to it.

After most of the resulting wave of sweet euphoria had washed over me, I finally bothered to ask if the Vexor actually popped. Kishin happily confirmed that. And then - while I was reconstructing my armour almost from the bottom - he had the nerve to tell me, that he would have liked to take on the Myrmidon, too.

It have now been a few days since this engagement. One of my most exhilarating fights, my luckiest escape by far. Whatever force majeure there may be still refrains from throwing me in front of interdictor gangs at every gate I pass.

Quite the contrary - but more on that soon.


Good Times

You may know one of these moments: It has been days since your last good fight or any sort of ransom or proper loot. You are on yet another roam where you find nothing but the occassional rookie ratter, if anything at all. You decide to check this last system before turning your ship around and return home, having better to do with your time.

And before you know it, you stumble into a series of events that can only be described as utterly ludicrous.

Allow me to demonstrate:

We have already established that absolutely nothing is going on as I am sniffing around in Essence lowsec. I let my Rifter warp to the Lisbaetanne stargate as a last attempt to maybe find something worthwhile to shoot at. I hope to find maybe another lone pirate or at least some rookie, who is not only visiting to buy some skillbooks.

The system indeed seems quite full of hostiles; however each seperate group sports bigger numbers than mine (which add up to roughly one frigate). Accordingly, Lisbaetanne's center cluster is mildly crowded with some otherwise tasty targets, who however most likely have support waiting somewhere else in space or in station. My Rifter's new name "Baiters Gonna Bait" reminds me that Lisbaetanne might not be a good place to stay at all that long.

I decide to head for two distant asteroid belts near another highsec gate. Maybe I'll jump in on some young pilot or find me some Shadow Serpentis ship to shoot at. I encounter neither at the first belt, no ships on scan.

With the other belt left to check before calling it a day I warp there. Just as I enter warp, the scanner reveals an Imperial Navy Slicer. Another scan confirms that it tried to catch me in the belt I just left. A plan emerges.

Immediately after landing in the second belt of Lisbaetanne IX, I turn around and move about 20km towards belt 1. Not surprisingly, the Slicer appears on my overview. More importantly, it lands right within my stasis webifier's range. Exactly as planned.

The Slicer is therefore pointed and webbed. With overheated afterburner I charge my opponent, taking some heavy hits from his fierce laser guns. Eventually I bridge the gap and can return the hurt. The lasers lose a lot of their punch now that they have some trouble to keep up with my Rifter. My repair unit is able to patch up some of the still remarkable incoming damage and my autocannons are doing their work nicely without much hindrance.

The formidable Amarr Navy frigate soon bursts into pieces. Despite having the ever so enjoyable shakes that come with great fights, I manage to point the pod and quickly scoop up the loot.

Just as I state my demands, an Arazu arrives at the scene. I don't take any chances and get out post haste instead of trying to squish the pod first.

Whew! Now safe and sound, I can get a closer look at my latest kill. Almost 50 million ISK of damage - not bad at all compared to the price of my Rifter, which is worth about as much as the looted afterburner alone.

Since Slicer pilot Angelous51 was an outlaw as well, I don't have to wait out any global criminal flag and directly head for home base. Wouldn't want to put the newly acquired goods at risk, would we?

Well, we sort of would: in the five minutes it had taken me to calm down again before setting course to Hevrice, Angelous initiated a little revenge op. As I jump into Aeschee, I am greeted by an Ares and a Dramiel. Uh-oh.

This provides me with exactly one option: Hurry back into Lisbaetanne and pray that there isn't anything waiting for me as well now. I select the gate and hit approach. My overheated afterburner roars into life. Angelous's Ares as well as the Dramiel quickly tackle me, but their damage is far too weak to destroy me before I reach the gate.

Whew again! I appear to be trapped in Lisbaetanne for now - if it weren't for a convenient escape route to Hulmate through highsec. Knowing that the Rough Necks have pilots that are not outlaws, I request help from one of The Tuskers' super secret scouts, whose identity shall remain super secret.

A while later - and after what felt like ages of stressful scanning for probes - Aere is confirmed safe for travel. Off I go, flip off the faction police while I'm at it and arrive safely in Hulmate, where I drop off the loot.

It is almost getting old considering how often I am able to say this, but here we go again: it didn't end there.

Super secret scout and prime prober *bleep* reports a Myrmidon missioning in Lisbaetanne. It appears to be piloted by a rather inexperienced fellow, who seems to be forced to leave the scene multiple times in order to repair his ship.

Back through Aere I go, flipping off the faction police once again for good measure and arrive just in time for prime prober *bleep* to have a warp-in ready.

All I have to do now is wait at the mission site's jumpgate for the Myrmidon to return again. It soon does and the young pilot is promptly stopped in his tracks. I shoot him and his medium drones a bit to make a point of him being doomed. Time to negotiate the mission tax.

As Vexonja joins the corp's ransom channel, he seems willing to bail out his ship. I'm getting a bit nervous because of some new probes on scan that are not belonging to prober *bleep*. I shoot the Myrmidon a bit more to calm me down. Finally Vexonja pays the 30 million ISK as suggested and is released from my grasp.

Despite this, he doesn't get a chance to warp out the Myrmidon. Guided by the hostile probes just mentioned, the aforementioned Arazu jumps in again. Once more I am able to escape, but Vexonja's Myrmidon is blown up. Talk about a bad day. Well, for him anyway, mine is going along rather nicely at this point.

Prober *bleep* gets his fair share from the ransom money - after having a little accident with the Rough Neck fleet, too. One of them warped in on a path that went right through the position of his covert-ops frigate.

Yup, that's just about as ludicrous as it gets on days like these.