A Little Less Conversation, A Little More Action

21Apr09

A little less conversation, a little more action please
All this aggravation aint satisfactioning me
A little more bite and a little less bark
A little less fight and a little more spark
Close your mouth and open up your heart and baby satisfy me
Satisfy me baby

A Little Less Conversation, Elvis Presley

It seems that since my little holiday things have started to heat up in low security space again. Until recently things had been pretty quiet but over the last week or so the fights have been coming thick and fast and that’s how I like them.

Last night was no different. I woke up in the sleeping quarters of my Rupture class cruiser. The Rupture is a ship that will appeal to any Brutor. It packs a rack of medium autocannons and can fit a mean amount of armour. Being the blood-thirsty killer that I am I optimise mine for massive amounts of autocannon damage. It really is a veritable space galleon. Anyway, I digress. My Rupture was stationed in Adirain following an alert the previous day. Although I missed the kill I’d stayed in Adirain and powered my ships systems down in deep space.

As my systems came online I spied a Vagabond in the local system. Because my ship was in orbit around a planet he scanned me down and warped towards me but I wasn’t to be caught off guard. For a while I toyed with the idea of trying to pin down the high speed Minmatar cruiser and take it down but I didn’t have enough confidence in my own ship’s defensive systems. Maybe I should invest in some of those implants I’ve heard about Sansha pilots flying with. Either way I decided that Adirain was too hot and set my computer for home.

As I jumped into Hevrice I was greeted by the sight of an outlawed Jaguar sitting just off the gate. This was too juicy a target to ignore and I primed my guns and tackled systems before bursting out of the cover that the gate’s cloaking system was providing me with. The assault frigate pilot, a member of the Black Rabbits, was caught off guard and my ECM drones prevented him from responding while rounds of Republic Fleet EMP tore into his advanced shield systems. While I was settling into orbit an Ishkur landed in support. This didn’t look good and I began yelling for support in the corporate communications channels but no-one was able to respond. A Rifter landed at range but bugged out leaving me with just the Jaguar and Ishkur to worry about. Surprisingly it seemed that the two ships were concentrating their damage on my ECM drones and I melted the Jaguar for minimal damage to my own systems. Next up was the Ishkur which met a similar fate. Between the two of them they’d barely been able to dent my shields. It was a pleasant surprise. Either ship should be able to give me a run for my money and both were piloted by pirates. It was a good way to start the evening’s killing.

I docked up the Rupture and had my technicians dispose of the loot while I prepared a Rifter. My plan was to head over to Old Man Star and see if I could find any trouble. That place is a hotbed of action with peaceful pilots, militiamen, and pirates aplenty. I wasn’t surprised at all to see another Tusker lurking in the system. Caster Rom was cruising around in his Taranis looking for a fight too. Pretty soon we were joined by PreZidenT and Alex Rudd and had a force capable of looking for a proper target. That came along when PreZ decided to tackle a Scorpion that was obviously playing bait in a belt. Confident that we could get out if a trap was sprung we all followed into the fray and began chipping away at the Scorpions shields and then armour. His ECM units occasionally broke our locks but we had enough ships to keep him pinned down. He had been assigned fighters from a carrier which couldn’t hit us but kept us on high alert for reinforcements. The Scorpion’s armour was dropping to critical levels when a Cerbereus and then Navy Issue Megathron warped in. The Tusker fleet aborted and warped out but Alex’s Thrasher was lost. It was a close call for the Scorpion pilot and with maybe one more frigate we’d have been able to take down the powerful ECM battleship. Good work, Tuskers.

While looking for my next good fight I scanned down a Catalyst in a belt. The pilot was fresh out of the academy and it didn’t take long to kill his destroyer and pod. During this time local was full of greetings and banter. It seems that in addition to my Rifter guide the release of my first combat film has made me even more well-known. One of the members of Space Perverts and Forum Warriors challenged me to fight his Vigil and capture it on film. Frigate on frigate? Well, the fight seemed pretty balanced so I was keen but aware of the fact he had friends in local. I was flagged as a criminal from engaging the Catalyst so I warped to the gate that he was camping at long range and then warped off to a planet in the hope that he had seen me and would follow. Now all I had to do was prime my weapons and wait…

Sure enough the Vigil landed 30 km from me and my camera drones were set to record. Now the Vigil is an electronic warfare support frigate and its main strength is its sheer speed. It can’t fit much of a tank so my plan was to fight it like I would an interceptor. To that end I had loaded my guns with close range ammo with the plan to get in close and orbit under his guns. The Rifter has a bonus to autocannon tracking which the Vigil lacks. I sped towards my opponent and he did the same to me. As I hit lock range I gave the command to begin targeting and as my systems resolved I was greeted by the gentle glow of my overloaded tackle systems coming to life. But not for long, though. The Vigil was soon out of my range. What?! Damn. He had an afterburner fitted. Still from that range he would be hard pushed to do me damage. Sure enough my shields and then armour were being slowly but inexorably chipped away despite my repairer. I concentrated on trying to manoeuvre into range and completely forgot to change my ammunition over to a long range variant. By the time I rectified this mistake it was too late. My stasis webifier had burnt out and my armour levels were critically low. I braced myself as my Rifter exploded and quickly warped my pod to safety. Looking at the killmail it seems that my opponent had taken advantage of the Vigil’s excellent capacitor to fit lasers. These long range weapons would allow him to chip away at me out of range of my own guns. I wonder what would have happened if I’d had Barrage loaded. Oh well, you win some, you lose some. Well played, Tosi. That’s an excellent fit and the fight will definitely feature in my next film.

Back in Hevrice I docked my pod and went away to do some chores while my criminal status wore off. Thankfully I have a hangar full of Rifters so I was back out in space almost immediately. On the station undock I was greeted by the sight of a war target! Did I not mention that The Tuskers are at war again? The Wolf was engaging PreZ’s Thorax and I burnt back to the station to get something with a bit more punch. There was a report of a hostile fleet camping the Hevrice gate in Muetralle so I would have to act quickly. My hangar crew made the change in record time and I was soon back out in my Rupture. I locked down the Wolf and began firing, rejoined by PreZ. He didn’t stand a chance and we soon destroyed him. I locked down the pod for good measure and was about to begin ransom negotiations when I saw the system population rise rapidly. I span up my autocannons and aligned to warp to safety, not even stopping to loot the wreck. This was a good decision. The hostile fleet landed as I entered warp. On my return the wreck was already looted and the station camped so I made for the docking ramp without hanging around.

My mood was buoyant. So far I’d made four good kills for just the loss of a single Rifter. I wasn’t going to stop now so I hopped back into my favourite ship and undocked. I waved at the camping fleet as my nimble ship entered warp before they could even respond at my presence and went about my business unimpeded. This is one of my favourite things about the Rifter. You can’t camp me in and its almost impossible to disrupt my activities if I’m careful. I set my navigation system for Adirain and went to see if I could find any targets in this border system rather than stay around Hevrice and be hunted by this fleet.

In Adirain I quickly scanned down a Thorax ratting in a belt. The pilot was young and inexperienced so I should be able to take him on in my Rifter. I engaged my warp drive and pounced into the fray. My ship landed 30 km from my target and after an initial miscommunication with my navicom I was soon burning towards him. He had a handful of low tech medium drones out so I shrugged them off and concentrated my fire on the cruiser instead. My guns made good progress through his shields and armour and as he began to take hull damage I opened up a ransom channel. As soon as I’d offered him the chance to save his ship a hostile Punisher landed in the belt. I didn’t have time to hang around and negotiate so I finished off the Thorax and apologised to the pilot. My focus was now on the Punisher and I burnt towards it at full speed reloading my guns as I shot through the black of space. I was soon upon him and my guns tore through his defences. Incredibly quickly, in fact. Destroying him was the work of moments and it needed to be because as his hull buckled a Sleipnir landed in the belt as well. I didn’t hang around and gave the command to warp out while instructing my navigator to bookmark the location of the Punisher’s wreck. I was coming back for that. As soon as I landed I turned my ship around and headed back to retrieve my winnings. I came out of warp just out of cargo transfer range and had to burn towards to wreck to obtain my prize. With the loot scooped I hit the warp command again and made it out to safety but not before the mighty command ship had hit me with a powerful volley from its vulcan autocannons, stripping my armour down to half integrity. Luckily the Sleipnir moved off and I was able to loot the Thorax’s wreck in peace. It was a shame that his valuable armour repair system was destroyed in the explosion but that’s life.

With six kills under my belt I was finally done for the evening and I headed back to Hevrice to dock up. Back in my quarters I caught up with a few old friends and spoke to Allii about some things I wanted buying. She reported back that my loot was selling well and that our account was currently flush with ISK. I began fantasising about what to spend it on. While I was day dreaming reports came in of a fight against a Hurricane, Manticore, and pair of Eagles but I was half asleep and left my corp mates to dispose of the threat in true Tusker style.

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