'Shae? What's up?'
'I could use a little help out here. Where the fuck is everyone?'
'Where are you?'
'Egmar gate in Arnher, I've been pinned down by an inty.'
'Can't you take it out?'
'You think a Phobos can take a Stiletto? He's calling for backup, can I expect any help?'
'I'll never get there in time. Sorry, Shae.'
'Yeah, I'm sorry, too.'
I eyed the gnat buzzing around fifteen kilometres away balefully, knowing I'd sealed my own fate by moving off the gate. I'd hoped to buy some time for backup to arrive, but there was no backup today. I should have just jumped back through when I saw the interceptor on the gate, gone to a safespot, and waited. But I'd really just wanted to go home.
I should have bloody stayed in bed today.
I'd arrived at the hangar still feeling the euphoric buzz from our suicidal destroyer op the night before. We'd ended the night by getting bombed on the last nullsec gate before lowsec, then pursued in our pods by a blob from FireTech, laughing our arses off at the fun of it. No matter how long I fly, I will always live for times like that.
It was quiet, a few pilots logging time doing their own things. I ran tests on a new interceptor fitting, then decided that, as I would be off for the evening with Chu, I could afford a clonejump to my Amamake base to pick up my Thermodynamics skillbook and start learning. We could meet in Egghelende, since that was a lot closer to where he normally operated from.
I stopped my ship a hundred kilometres off the gate. If they wanted to kill me, I wasn't going to make it easy for them; whatever they brought through would have to slowboat it out.
The gate flared, the local population jumping from two to seven. Six people just to take me out. They must seriously be overestimating me today. I checked the cargo, but the ship wasn't geared for a fight -- no capacitor boosters to feed the reppers, just a load of medium ammo which wasn't going to do jackshit to something more than five kilometres away.
I sighed. Who the fuck designs a Gallente ship without drones?
My Thermo book wasn't in my Amamake hangar. Cursing, I checked my assets. It was in Todifrauan: I'd bought the book, then neglected to pick it up.
Well, great. Kind of a wasted trip out, huh.
Mentally, I went through the list of things I had been intending to do out here. Only one seemed to actually be important: the Phobos Abbel gave me for my birthday last year really belonged in Evati. We had little use for it out here -- the flashy tech-two ship was little more than very expensive bait. I'd asked my regular hauler if she could move it via highsec, but the rigged ship wouldn't fit in her hauler, and she wasn't skilled to pilot it.
In retrospect, I should have asked my alliance-mates if they knew anyone who could move it for me.
GiS had brought in two interceptors, a cruiser, a stealth bomber, a battlecruiser and a HAC to take me out. For once, they actually didn't rely on ECM (shock), but it wasn't like they needed it. I sat there feeling my own disgust and ire grow as they casually stayed out of my range and whittled my armour down.
Fuck this shit.
Relieved that I was the only person onboard -- the crew had been sent on ahead via InterBus -- I turned the reppers off. The armour shot suddenly towards the zero mark, and as I broadcast, 'I love you guys, really,' I turned off the damage control.
The hull melted, probably much faster than they'd expected, and I was already spamming my pod's warp command as the ship fell apart around me. The unexpected speed at which the ship died may have been the only thing that saved me an additional podding.
I really should have just stayed in bed.