By The Skin Of My Teeth

09Oct08

With some ISK in my pocket and the night still young I headed back to Hevrice to pick up my Rupture. This time I was going to head in the other direction and go and explore the systems north of Hevrice on what is becoming my routine patrol.

As is becoming usual the run up to Ouelletta was quiet. Too quiet. My mind had been hypnotised by the rhythm of jump, scan, warp, scan, warp, scan, warp, jump… This is a dangerous state for any pilot to be in, especially a known outlaw on the hunt for trouble. When I jumped into Ouelletta there was another outlaw sitting on the gate. This time in a Thorax. Comfortable that I could take on the Thorax I settled into a 15 km orbital pattern to see what he’d do. He targeted me then, after a few seconds thought, opened fire. In my hypnotised state my responses were slower than usual and after I’d spun up my guns and tackle equipment I suddenly realised I’d forgotten to return the favour of actually targeting my opponent. In the confusion of correcting this I’d also failed to pay attention to his range and I was now webbed by the enemy cruiser. This wasn’t looking good, I’d lost vital initiative and now I had to pay catch up. I activated my cap warfare modules and played my trump card, my ECM drones. By now I was about 1/3 into my armour and just starting to break into his. It was possible that I would have enough to take him out but it was close. Far too close.

Suddenly my ECM drones did what they do best and acquired a jamming cycle. For a few seconds I continued to pound his ship thinking that this could turn the fight in my favour but I remembered my rather large list of lost ships and decided to take the more prudent option and make good my escape. I warped away to safety leaving him to pick up my ECM drones while I licked my wounds and rued loosing the advantage so early in the fight. Congratulations were exchanged in the local comms channel while I docked up to fit a repair system to fix my battered armour.

With my ship restored to its former glory I set course back to Hevrice to pick up some fresh drones. Maybe I should carry a few spares in my cargo in the future. Anyway, I digress. Jumping into Melmaniel I find possibly one of the scariest ships in the galaxy waiting for me, a Vagabond class heavy assault cruiser. Luckily it is about 30 km from my current position so I take full advantage of this and warp post haste to the next gate and jump immediately. The Vagabond follows and breaks its cloak just was I warp to the next gate. This is going to be hairy. Although I have the advantage the Vagabond is quicker to align for warp than I am so is catching up a few seconds at a time. A few seconds is an absolute age, though, in combat. That can be the difference between him getting a lock or not.

In Hevrice my luck ran out. I aligned for warp and watched as my capacitor dumped its load into the warp drive’s core. At the same time the Vagabond decloaked and acquired a lock, deactivating my warp drive but leaving me with no capacitor charge either. Thankfully the Vagabond almost never carries a web so I headed back to the gate while my ship was pounded by heavy missiles and rounds of Barrage ammunition. My progress was painfully slow. Because my warp systems had gobbled all my capacitor charge I didn’t have enough to get even a single pulse out of my microwarp drive so I had to crawl back to the gate. My ship’s structure began to give way. All that was left between me and death now was my damage control unit and 5,000 m of open space. 4,000 m. 3,000 m. At the magic number of 2,500 m I hit the jump command and looked at my ship’s damage readout. I had 17% structural integrity left.

Wow. Today must be my lucky day.

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6 Responses to “By The Skin Of My Teeth”

  1. Heehee…good think he couldn’t jump through after you! This has happened to me on a few roams up towards the Bleak Lands. I’ve gotten into the habit of making a couple of safes (including a deep safe if possible) in every system I pass through, so I can duck out of involuntary gatechases if I feel I’m losing the race.

  2. What, no story about a dead mining Hyperion?

  3. @Mynxee, I have the safes, I just didn’t think to use them. The fact he was always going to align faster took a while to occur to me. Oh, and had a good amount of time on the jump back because he’d aggro’d me so had to wait for his timer to cool off.

    @Spectre, hold your horses, its on its way. I want to pull out the chat logs for extra goodness.

  4. Mmm, a safepot in every system. You know that’s not a bad idea. Might start to drop these as I travel through.


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