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Author Topic: Distress Call  (Read 4487 times)

Callista Dalmore

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Distress Call
« on: May 04, 2013, 02:35:12 AM »

Distress call
Tengu, Low-sec, orbiting a moon
He lounged in his pod glancing from time to time at the streams of data as they came back from his combat probes.  Nothing.  Oh well, something was bound to come by sooner or later.  He preferred sooner, but later would be fine.  Besides, he was behind in laundering the isk he’d gotten from the last tourist who’d been through his system.

Loki, Docked, Adjacent hi-sec
Nukpanolonia felt a thrill go down her spine as the sleeper-tech-enhanced interface connected to her pod.  Hell, this was better than chocolate, this was better than…
“Systems online, pilot,” chimed the seductive voice of the ship’s AI module.

She could hardly believe that she was in her very own Loki-class advanced cruiser.  Countless hours in countless belts, mining and mining and still more mining had finally bore fruit.  The ship whispered out of station; silky smooth, like fur on glass.   

“Time to get in on some of those low sec gravy trains.” She thought to herself as she slipped into warp towards the low sec gate.  Slowing to sub-light speed at her destination, she found the gate traffic to be unsurprisingly light: in fact she was the only one in the queue.  The gate’s jump sequence began immediately.  Concord control sent her the standard warning about the lawless dangers of low-sec but she paid it no heed as she flashed into the void beyond.  It was time to start making back all that isk she’d spent purchasing her new ride.

Tengu, Low-sec , orbiting a moon
“Captain?  New contact in local,” chimed his scanner software.  Finally, the wait was over.  He readied his combat probes and prepared to drop cloak.  Need to let the fly wander a little deeper.

Loki, Low-sec, at hi-sec gate
“Ok, one contact in local.  Even though her ship had been fit as a recon and discovery vessel, it could damn well take care of itself in a scrap.  Let them come.  She warped to the closest asteroid belt and launched her probes.  She quickly configured their relative geometry and when she sent them away she almost gasped at the speed with which they responded and then scanned.  She’d skilled up in the T3’s subsystems for weeks now, to see them in action was a dream come true.   Almost immediately cosmic anomaly signatures popped up over her system overlay.

Tengu, Low-sec, orbiting a moon
“They always go for the top belt, don’t they…” he half-smiled.  Well, he wasn’t going to complain about a job being easy.  You didn’t get rich doing things the hard way.  Setting his destination to the location of the cruiser, he shifted into warp, warmed up his assault missile racks and popped out 20km from his target.  He began his well practiced sequence: afterburners on, close range, target lock, warp scram, web, full barrage of advanced assault missles, orbit target.  Load next missles, fire.  Repeat. 
Ok, now look at the target’s status.  He welcomed the sight of its shields fading, fast.

Loki, Low-sec, asteroid field
It was like they decided to set up a rave inside her pod.  Blinking lights, warning scripts, proximity alerts, impact calculations, damage reports and warp scramble status all swirled about her in a flood of stimuli.  First things first, shield rep on, shield hardeners on.  There, now at least the shield rate of decay slowed.  She took a breath, scanned her local and saw that her foe was a Tengu class advanced cruiser.

Another volley and then another volley, god dammit! Her trajectory analysis routine seemed to take forever.  Finally the targeting solution locked in and she triggered her own auto-cannons.  A faint slimmer of red appeared on her target’s estimated shield capacity readout. 

Well this wasn’t going to go well.

Tengu, Low-sec, asteroid field
Opening a broadcast channel to the other ship, the captain hailed his prey.  “Sup mate,” he asked as yet another volley slammed into the Loki.  No response.  How typical.
“I’m willing to let you go free, for a fee.”

The Loki was down a third of its shields and he was still at 85%.  He clearly had the upper hand.  This should help with the “negotiations”.

Loki, Low-sec, asteroid field
Well there was no way she was going to win this.  She compared her ship’s shield rate of decay with his and she’d be in armor before the Tengu was even half way down.  Well, maybe his fee wouldn’t be so bad. 

She opened her own coms and replied, “Let me go? Sure you are...”

His response came almost immediately, “I’m an ex BMC member mate, I honour my agreements.  We would both win with this.  You’re wasting ammo, I’m wasting missiles.  We could reach a middle term, mate.  Before those nasty rock people show up.”

She laughed out loud.  He of course meant low-sec pirates which infested the ore belts.  They were slightly better equipped than their high sec counter parts but she could have easily dealt with them.  Now, however…

A flash notice came up from her corporate communications channel at the bottom of her display.  “Greetings everyone in Phoibe corp, how are things on this lovely day?” scrolled Soprian’s message in the chat window.

Almost leaping out of her pod to reach the corporate coms unit, Nuk frantically dictated, “SOP PLZ HELP!  GOING TO LOSE MY LOKI!!!”

Soprian answers, “Well that’s no good, where are you?”

Pulling down the system info she quickly forwarded her location to him.  Almost immediately came the response, “ Okay, I am 16 jumps out and I have to refit, what’s attacking you?”

On voice comms, the Tengu pilot continued, what seemed now a well-rehearsed routine, “What do you say? Hm?”

She looked at her read outs:  her shields 42%, his shields 79%.

She flicked her comms and answered, “Thank you for the offer!”  And just as quickly sent to Soprian, “Tengu, plz hurry!”

Seemingly unaware of her slight lag in responding, the Tengu captain continued, “Are you sure?  I’m not kidding about the agreement, mate.”

She had to keep him talking, “How much?” Negotiating, that should help.

The tengu captain responded, “What’s your offer?  In my opinion, I would start at 2 billion isk, considering your age and experience.”

Nuk, cringed, yep, a professional pirate.  He’d already scanned her ship for ID and had it looked up in the registry.  She had tried not to leave a data trail but she knew there were few secrets between capsuleers.  She tried the mercy gambit, “Well I have no experience against other capsuleer pilots.” And she gave a little feminine laugh.  Might as well play the defenseless female card as well, she thought, and continued, “as you can see.”

Readouts now had her approaching  35%, a little more and some of that was going to start getting though her shields to her armor which, for all intents and purposes could have been made of foam Quafe cups.  The Tengu was still above 50%.  Well, at least my estimate was bang on regarding the shield decay.

“Nuk,” came the text from Soprian, “they are just bolting my last module on now and will be in transit in the next 30 seconds.  Oh, and fleet me.”

The Tengu captain continued, still seemingly unaware, “I’m not talking about capsuleer combat, I am talking about how long you’ve been one.  And I am expecting some expensive modules in that ship.”

Well, he was right about that, Nuk lamented to herself. “Right, you’d think I would know better.” She said as she sent, simultaneously to Soprian, “Get here, my shields are almost gone.  Fleet is up.”

“So my initial offer is 2 billion isk,” restated the captain. 

Always refuse the initial offer she remembered Hunter telling her.  “Psh, nah,” she sent.

“You tell me your fit and I’ll estimate,” he replied.  Nuk surmised that the other captain had been at this a long time.  He could probably guess her fit just from looking at the hull, although he’d have to peer through a lot of assault missile shrapnel and smoke to do so at the moment.

“I didn’t pay half for it,” yeah that’s it, counter way below initial offer.

“Alright, how much would you pay? “ The captain asked.

“Nuk, Sop here, am in warp towards first gate now.  How are you holding up?”

Nuk looked at her shields, 28%.  She answered, “Not good, at max shield recharge but will be out of it soon. No damage controls.”

The Tengu captain, misreading her hesitation, continued “Heh, don’t wanna talk about it… Suit yourself.”

Uh-oh, she was about to lose him, “Well I’m not sure…I just bought it.”  The mercy gambit, the defenseless female gambit now the dumb gambit…she should get an award.
“Show me your fit so I can estimate a proper price, mate.”

Well, he’s going to see it anyway if I am slag, no harm now.  Nuk keyed her technical readouts and pushed transmit.

“Alright, I’ll offer 800 million. How’s this?” A slight pause, and then, “actually 900, didn’t see the Republican Fleet Gyrostabilizers.  I’d rather take the money than a chance at dropping mods and it’s less expensive for you than buying a new one.”

“Ya, good point, I have never been in this situation, so I don’t know what to do.”  Yeah, that’s just the right mix of dumb and pathetic, well almost.  “I guess I’m a dumb girl.”  There, I might as well be as blunt as possible.

“It’s your call, I’m willing to leave you alone for those 900 mil. no strings attached.  I would advise, if you intend to pay to stay away from this system for a while.”

“So, I pay you and you promise to let me go?” Nuk pushed her voice up an octave.

“As those Kalamazu Aideron are dubious, yes I do.  I would also ask you to stop shooting.”

Well, this was it.  She clicked her safety’s on. “Oops, sorry, I will stop.”  To Soprian she sent, “How close are you?”

“8 jumps,” came the reply.  Well he might as well have said a million.

Think, Nuk, think!

“I would have to get the funds from a close acquaintance of min,”  she sent and as soon as it was out of her mouth she cringed.  Ugh, that is the dumbest thing yet, he’ll never go for that. 

“That wouldn’t work,” he replied, as she’d expected.

If you have a hand full of clubs, play them, Nuk thought.  She tried the dumb card again, “What won’t work?”

“Communicating with an acquaintance,” replied the captain, sternly.

Nuk was sure she’d stepped over the line but hurried on, “No, no, this acquaintance is a Mining operator…”

Her shields were at 19%, her Pithum C-Type Medium shield booster was starting to make a strange sound.

Then after a long pause, he replied, “ok, do it fast though.”

Nukpanolonia wasn’t a particularly religious person but at that moment every deity she’d ever heard of got prayers sent to them.

“Ok,” she sent.

“Ok, I’m going to give you a minute.” Came the reply, “just as a warning, I will lower your shields.”

Nuk sent the all-stop to her shield repair unit which seemed to be wailing like an injured child.  With the boosts gone, her remaining shields quickly dropped to zero.  But, true to his word, the missiles stopped.  His warp scramble stayed firmly in place though.

In the eerie quiet that followed, Nuk stared at the clock as it ticked down.  Well, she did have an acquaintance but she’d burned that bridge long ago.

Thirty seconds.

To Sop, she sent, “Bought some time, hope it’s enough, how far are you?”

“4 jumps.”

One minute.

She braced herself but the channel stayed silent.

One minute, fifteen seconds.

Coms stayed silent.

Soprian sends, “I’m in system, warping to you. Get ready to jump.”

One minute, twenty five seconds…

Tengu, Low-sec,  asteroid field
“New signal on grid captain, intercept course.  New vessel registered to same corporation as current target.”

“That sneaking little, b----!“ cried the captain, to his weapons console he shouted, “all fire on target!” But suddenly his comms went dead, as well as his astrometrics subsystems with cascading failure to his targeting and tracking computers.

“Target lock lost, re-acquiring,” flashed his console.

He flicked his re-initialization sequence and got a countdown but through his external vid cams he could see that the Loki’s warp drive was already spooling up.  A moment later it, and her saviour, were gone.

Hi-sec, docked in station
Sipping on a very girly drink, Nuk looks across the table at Soprian who’s taking the umbrella out of his equally girly drink when her com buzzes. 

“I wonder who that could be?” she says, mockingly, and answers the call.

“Smart,” comes the now familiar Tengu captain’s voice.

“Thank you,” she replies.  She overhears the bustle of a crowd in the background when he talks.  She imagines him sitting in a bar, similar to this one, on one of the countless stations, somewhere out there.

“Oh, well, win some, lose some,” he says, savoring the platitude.

“I am really a dumb girl,” she teases.

“Yep,” he answers.  She can hear the smile in his voice.

“But I have smart boys,” she continues, hoping he’ll stay on the line.

“Apparently,” he says, “but thanks to that, I opened my weary eyes again.  Next time you won’t be so lucky.”

Sitting here, sipping her drink, it’s all so far away, like a dream, like a game.  She answers, “I know, I might just stay away.”

“Your call,” he replies, leaving the door wide open.

Nuk laughs.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2013, 02:44:23 AM by Callista Dalmore »

Callista Dalmore

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Re: Distress Call
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2013, 02:38:34 AM »

Here is the transcript of the chat exchange Nuk had with the Tengu pilot:

Check out 22:06:29 ;)

[ 2013.04.07 21:52:49 ] Dirty Pardel > sup mate
[ 2013.04.07 21:52:53 ] Dirty Pardel > im willing to let you go free
[ 2013.04.07 21:52:56 ] Dirty Pardel > for a fee :)
[ 2013.04.07 21:53:00 ] Nukpanolonia > im sure you are
[ 2013.04.07 21:53:09 ] Dirty Pardel > im an ex bmc member mate
[ 2013.04.07 21:53:13 ] Dirty Pardel > i honour my agreements
[ 2013.04.07 21:53:55 ] Dirty Pardel > we would both win with this
[ 2013.04.07 21:54:15 ] Dirty Pardel > youre wasting ammo, im wasting missiles
[ 2013.04.07 21:54:20 ] Dirty Pardel > we could reach a middle term mate
[ 2013.04.07 21:54:35 ] Dirty Pardel > before those nasty rock people show up
[ 2013.04.07 21:54:41 ] Nukpanolonia > lol
[ 2013.04.07 21:54:44 ] Dirty Pardel > what do you say?
[ 2013.04.07 21:55:21 ] Dirty Pardel > hm?
[ 2013.04.07 21:55:36 ] Nukpanolonia > ty for the offer!
[ 2013.04.07 21:55:44 ] Dirty Pardel > are you sure? :/
[ 2013.04.07 21:55:51 ] Dirty Pardel > im not kidding about the agreement mate
[ 2013.04.07 21:56:12 ] Nukpanolonia > how much?
[ 2013.04.07 21:56:38 ] Dirty Pardel > whats your offer?
[ 2013.04.07 21:56:53 ] Dirty Pardel > well imo
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:23 ] Dirty Pardel > I would start at the 2 bil mark?
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:28 ] Dirty Pardel > considering your age and experience
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:41 ] Nukpanolonia > well really i have no oexperise pvp
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:43 ] Nukpanolonia > lol
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:47 ] Nukpanolonia > as you can see
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:51 ] Dirty Pardel > im talking game time wise
[ 2013.04.07 21:57:59 ] Dirty Pardel > and im expecting some expensive modules in that ship
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:04 ] Nukpanolonia > rright you think i would know better
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:04 ] Dirty Pardel > so 2 bil is my initial offer
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:19 ] Nukpanolonia > psh
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:20 ] Nukpanolonia > nah
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:23 ] Dirty Pardel > you tell me your fit ad ill estimate
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:27 ] Nukpanolonia > i didnt pay half for it :)
[ 2013.04.07 21:58:38 ] Dirty Pardel > alright how much would you pay?
[ 2013.04.07 21:59:42 ] Dirty Pardel > heh dont wanna talk about it... suit yourself :/
[ 2013.04.07 21:59:53 ] Nukpanolonia > well im not sure
[ 2013.04.07 21:59:56 ] Nukpanolonia > i just bought it
[ 2013.04.07 22:00:07 ] Dirty Pardel > show me the fit so i can estimate a proper price mate
[ 2013.04.07 22:00:54 ] Nukpanolonia > Utoh!
[ 2013.04.07 22:01:16 ] Dirty Pardel > alright
[ 2013.04.07 22:01:21 ] Dirty Pardel > ill offer 800 mil
[ 2013.04.07 22:01:22 ] Dirty Pardel > hows this?
[ 2013.04.07 22:01:33 ] Dirty Pardel > actualy 900
[ 2013.04.07 22:01:37 ] Dirty Pardel > didnt see the rep fleet
[ 2013.04.07 22:02:01 ] Dirty Pardel > Id rather take the money than a chance at dropping mods
[ 2013.04.07 22:02:23 ] Dirty Pardel > and its still less expesive for you than buying a new one
[ 2013.04.07 22:02:36 ] Nukpanolonia > ya good poiint..i have never been in this i dont know what to do
[ 2013.04.07 22:02:41 ] Nukpanolonia > dumb girl
[ 2013.04.07 22:02:54 ] Dirty Pardel > its your call, im willing to leave you alone for those 900 mil
[ 2013.04.07 22:03:03 ] Dirty Pardel > no strings attached
[ 2013.04.07 22:03:24 ] Dirty Pardel > I would also adivse you if you intend to pay to stay away from this system for a while
[ 2013.04.07 22:03:26 ] Nukpanolonia > so i pay you and you promise tolet mego?
[ 2013.04.07 22:03:32 ] Dirty Pardel > as those Kalamazu Aideron are dubious
[ 2013.04.07 22:03:34 ] Dirty Pardel > yes i do
[ 2013.04.07 22:04:56 ] Dirty Pardel > I would also ask you to stop shooting :P
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:10 ] Nukpanolonia > i have to log onto an alt to get some more money
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:19 ] Nukpanolonia > oops sorry..i will stop
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:21 ] Dirty Pardel > that wouldnt work sorry :S
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:29 ] Nukpanolonia > what wont work?
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:36 ] Dirty Pardel > logging an alt
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:41 ] Dirty Pardel > if its in this account
[ 2013.04.07 22:05:52 ] Nukpanolonia > is a mining alt
[ 2013.04.07 22:06:05 ] Dirty Pardel > ok do it fast though
[ 2013.04.07 22:06:08 ] Nukpanolonia > kk
[ 2013.04.07 22:06:15 ] Dirty Pardel > im gonna give you a minute
[ 2013.04.07 22:06:29 ] Dirty Pardel > just as a warning I will lower your shields
[ 2013.04.07 22:08:53 ] Dirty Pardel > smart
[ 2013.04.07 22:09:39 ] Nukpanolonia > ty
[ 2013.04.07 22:09:48 ] Dirty Pardel > oh well
[ 2013.04.07 22:09:55 ] Dirty Pardel > win some lose some
[ 2013.04.07 22:11:50 ] Nukpanolonia > i am really a dumb girl
[ 2013.04.07 22:12:30 ] Dirty Pardel > yep
[ 2013.04.07 22:12:51 ] Nukpanolonia > but i have smart boys :)
[ 2013.04.07 22:15:47 ] Dirty Pardel > aparently
[ 2013.04.07 22:16:06 ] Dirty Pardel > but thanks to that I opened my weary eyes again
[ 2013.04.07 22:16:11 ] Dirty Pardel > next time you wont be so lucky ;)
[ 2013.04.07 22:16:26 ] Nukpanolonia > i know..i might just stay away :)
[ 2013.04.07 22:16:36 ] Dirty Pardel > your call
[ 2013.04.07 22:16:49 ] Nukpanolonia > lol
[ 2013.04.07 22:19:39 ] Dirty Pardel > hm
[ 2013.04.07 22:19:42 ] Dirty Pardel > was that fit real?
[ 2013.04.07 22:19:57 ] Nukpanolonia > ya sadly it is
[ 2013.04.07 22:20:32 ] Dirty Pardel > I see
[ 2013.04.07 23:07:58 ] Nukpanolonia > well im off..thanks for the chate
[ 2013.04.07 23:08:03 ] Nukpanolonia > *chat
[ 2013.04.07 23:08:06 ] Dirty Pardel > bb
[ 2013.04.07 23:08:22 ] Nukpanolonia > o/
[ 2013.04.07 23:08:28 ] Dirty Pardel > bb