"What is it? Content Day again?"
Things had been pretty lively throughout the day, but I couldn't agree with Galmas that it was once more what USYSC had lovingly dubbed "Content Day". For a frenetic few hours, Content Day was non-stop PvP. Today, we had opportunities in between the action to catch our collective breath. Plus, it had been an hour and a half since the fight with Unsettled and I had returned to the keyboard to find some scouts hunting down an Astero in order to provoke a fight with some people we'd never heard of.
Eventually, the scouts decided that nothing was happening and the fleet was stood down and moved back through the connecting C5. Disappointed at the turn of events, a couple of guys logged off. I was more optimistic and not moving with any particular urgency, I loitered in the system before I jumped home, knowing that it wouldn't be long before Protean Concept’s own scouts discovered where we were moving around from. It wasn't long at all and soon I saw a Helios decloak at the wormhole I was waiting on and I jumped through, hopeful that I had left the impression that the Legion was piloted by some tardy straggler who had become separated from the fleet.
I had plenty of time to warp away from the hole before a second or two later, a subsequent activation signalled that the Helios had followed me through, and all but confirming my suspicions that the Helios was set up for more than just scanning. I used the time to light the micro-warpdrive and put some distance between the hole and myself as I aligned to my POS, but in the fashion of true hero-tackle, the Helios ignored this, perhaps thinking the Legion was slow to align and burned in to get scram. Anticipating this outcome, I had pre-loaded Navy HAMs and no doubt aided by the signature bloom of the Helios’ own MWD (along with the target painter and webs on the Legion), made short work of the intrepid tackler. Once again, I loitered. This time, as if scooping loot from the Helios wreckage which was at close to 30km from the K162. Seconds later, a brace of WH activations triggered my exultation; Protean Concept had bought it hook, line and sinker.
The trap may have lacked any real finesse, but it was elegant in its simplicity and the jaws were about to close on a Vigilant and a Proteus. I began to re-align to feign a willingness to escape and soon found myself pointed again. I was still moving away from the WH but the two ships sped after in the confidence that the 90% velocity web from Vigilant and the scram from the Proteus would seal my Legion’s fate, so far off the WH. As the web landed, I signalled our remaining pilots to warp to me and primary the Vigilant that my Legion was already spitting missiles at. On my second screen, I warped my Loki into the fight and was joined by Myst’s Loki and Tuscor’s Stratios. Protean Concept were also calling in reinforcements and an Arazu had joined in the skirmish by the time my backup had arrived on grid. Thanks to the efforts of the Legion, there wasn’t much left of the Vigilant and the Arazu pilot soon followed the Vigilant pilot in warping their pods to safety.
What I would have given to have been a fly on the wall of Protean Concept’s comms at this point. The rest of their fleet rushed into our home system to the aid of the stranded Proteus in what would have brought shame to a disorganised clusterfuck. We were further reinforced by Galmas, Seung and Fiesty in Proteus’ and some hastily dual-boxed logi, so, had all their ships arrived together, it would have been a reasonably balanced fight. As things were, it was a shooting gallery. The Proteus was soon dispatched, and was soon joined by a Legion, another Proteus and one of their Guardians. A few ships managed to retreat, seemingly with greater fervour and organisation than they had used to join the fight in the first place. As they did, one of their pilots left an ominous message in local:
Malcom Bilge > we will be back'
Galmas announced that he had to log in such a way that it left no doubt whatsoever. This changed things ever so slightly. We were down to 6 actual players, with Oddic returning to keyboard. A quick background check on Protean Concept showed that despite being of somewhat comparable size to USYSC (or at least not significantly larger), they tended to be more active. That only meant that our preparation needed to be better. Given how well they conducted themselves in the first skirmish, that wasn’t going to be too difficult. We placed a scout in the connecting C5 to give us warning of their fleet composition. As expected, they brought numbers. Not only that, carrier support landed 30km off the WH and they jumped a Dominix and a Megathron into our home to bait. Jumping smaller numbers into a Magnetar where they had an Archon waiting just wasn’t going to happen. As up for another fight as we were, we aren’t stupid – although chatter in local led me to believe that Protean Concept might well be.
Ilaister > come on pussies
Tuscor > bring your archon in
Ilaister > suck my veiny dick
Now, I’m all for a bit of smacktalk as a means to an end, but more as a battle of wits – something that most people who partake in smacktalk have a lamentable lack of. Ilaister was certainly no exception. Now, I have a feeling that he might try and mitigate his stupidity with some sort of comment like “I was very drunk”, which I would understand if I even had the slightest interest to ask. But I don’t. I confess that at this time of night, I myself had imbibed not an insignificant amount of rum, however the difference was I could still think coherently. Besides, I fly better when I've had a few!
Ilaister > you aint got shit :D
Jay Joringer > Kill: Ilaister (Vigilant) Got that ;)
Ilaister > 7-v-2 yarp
Ilaister > congrats
Let’s do a little recap. There were 4 guys on his killmail (two of which were me) and 4 guys on the Arazu a minute later (one of which was me, making 5) – The Arazu who jumped after the Proteus (making 3 of them at the time). I’m not disputing his numbers. After all:
Ilaister > I imagine that was the US public school system's fault. Producing retards like you is all they're good at I'm afraid.
Possibly drunk, but definitely casually racist, absurdly presumptuous and undoubtedly a little sore from the stupidity of the Vigilant loss. I had a good laugh about that one - probably for all the wrong reasons, though (but you'll have to do a lot better to get into my bio). I was desperately hoping this guy wasn't a fellow Brit when Tuscor announced that he was actually Australian (he is) which just seemed to blow his mind.
Ilaister > AUSSIES
Ilaister > IT ALL MAKES SENSE
Ilaister > you're up early..... hmmm.
As Ilaister carried on with a persistence of an old Jack Russell (for those ignorant of cynology, a Jack Russell is a small terrier, often characterised for its over-aggressive barking in proportion to the size of its teeth), I left them to it as I scanned Protean Concept’s killboards. Ilaister was actually their killboard leader in the month so far and I felt a slight pang of pity for them. It was then I noticed that D3m0n Sam had settled with them for the moment.
In all likelihood, he’s probably unaware that we've spoken before, but rewind a year or so, I was becoming disillusioned with Disavowed and was looking for a way out of Blackstar. I had a couple of possibilities on the radar, one of which was End-of-Line, which D3m0n Sam was recruiter for and who I spoke to via an alt. After a brief-ish chat on Teamspeak with them, I was able to comprehensively rule them out. He’d invited 3 potential recruits on after checking API’s and instead of giving the usual recruitment spiel, got distracted by a corpmate asking about POS rights. For over an hour, the other potentials and I had to listen to Sam struggle with some very simple POS management. It wasn’t that part that put me off so much, but wasting people’s time for that long is just plain retarded. And now he was flying alongside Ilaister. Well, as they say; birds of a feather flock together.
Galdur> What do you reckon about that, Jay?
While I’d been distracted, the guys had been formulating a plan to counter Protean Concept. We’d been trying strafing runs in a Machariel on the bait ships, but these had been pointless with just one Mach and no Scimitar to offset the sentry drones the Dominix was dropping. It would have been two, but I asked for a bomber to deal with the drones. Galdur went through the plan again, and I have to be honest, I didn’t listen that time either. I interrupted to say “Yeah, just do it” in the hope that something would happen. What did happen was that Galdur warped his alt at range to the WH with a Moros. True to form, the Proteans didn't jump their Battleships out, despite the threat of Siege Blasters. Infact, they jumped their fleet in.
Knowing we couldn't field as many ships as them, we had our own Archon ready to go. As for myself, I had swapped out the Legion for a Vindicator. After the Moros finished off the Megathron and the Dominix, we set to work on the Absolution, hoping to take it out before the Protean Archon had a chance to warp back to zero on the hole and jump through to their fleet.
From then, it was slow going and it seemed it was our turn to make mistakes. Two dreadnoughts were called for to get rid of their Archon. Oddic volunteered his Moros before I volunteered a Naglfar, but with Seung on grid in his Moros, the Nag wouldn’t be needed. That suited me fine as I had noticed after Rising Sun’s first outing in the fight against Provi-bloc’s Nidhoggur I’d somehow only managed to train capital shield operation to level one. At this point it was on the training queue to get this embarrassing situation fixed, but not for another couple of days. What I hadn't noticed, was that Seung had warped off. The scout reported two Protean Concept Moros’ warping through the connecting C5. The K162 collapsed behind the first Moros (piloted by the aforementioned D3m0n sam), which levelled its guns at our Archon. Protean Concept were not allowing Myst to deploy any mobile depots, which forced us to field another carrier so Myst could refit and not die. While distracted, we lost a Bhaalgorn and an Armageddon, but the Moros hadn't even yellowboxed my Vindicator from 42km away.
At any moment I expected that to change and see volleys of extra-large hybrid ammo tear into the hull, but it wasn't to be. With the Vindicator free to fly around the battlefield with impunity, I scanned around for soft targets. As the mainstay of Protean Concepts fleet closed the distance to our Dreadnought, I spotted a Rook between the two groups of capital ships. I warned the fleet I was closing on it and we lit it up as soon as I was in web range. Now halfway across the field, I manoeuvred the Vindicator to the relative safety of a close orbit with Sam’s Moros while I (belatedly) warped the Loki away to bring in a second Dreadnought. While this was going on, I spotted a Protean Ishtar drift close to their Dread and decided to take a couple of potshots, which paid off quicker than I expected.
Communication among our own fleet was a bit of a mess and we were riding our luck. If Protean Concept had been any good, they’d have stayed focused on our first Archon (which we would have lost) and I’d be short a Vindicator. As it was, they were all over the shop. I was having an easy ride as my Naglfar was set up to tank the kinetic and thermal damage of the Moros and the Legions they had neuting me barely made an impression. For some reason, more of the fleet reshipped to Dreadnoughts as Vince logged in. Then he decided to bring one as well. This didn't leave much tackle around for when the Moros and then the Archon were destroyed, although we did catch one of the Legions as the rest of their fleet decided they’d had enough. At least they took it well:
Ilaister > we pwn better corps than yours
Well, sort of.
But then again, there's nothing better than a good old fashioned tear-harvest to make you feel smug.