Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Beginning Part 2

I lay awake on my bed in the FA station in YI just staring at the bulkhead above me thinking about my last operation in space and how to spend the rewards from the loot that I picked up. Wasn't much but every little bit can help get a new type of shield module or armor repairer or something useful. As I drift off to sleep my mind flashes back several months to the Republic Military School station and the testing to determine if I was really capable of becoming a capsuleer.......

Ten of us are sitting in a little conference room waiting after having gone through a week of testing using devices that I couldn't even describe much less understand their function. I have been poked and prodded like never before....stupid medical people......

No one really says anything to anyone else. We are all just sitting staring at the walls or the floor or something.....waiting. Then the door opens and the medical evaluation team leader steps into the room. He is wearing his usual white smocks and those crazy blue cloth shoe things they have, never understood the purpose for those things, maybe just part of their uniform. This is the moment we all find out if we are to become capsuleers or if this has been a huge waste of time.

He walks into the room and two additional doors open on another wall. He moves to stand between those doors and proceeds to call out our names and point either to the left door or the right door. When he calls my name he sends me to the right door, with only two other people in the room. The three of us enter into a small conference room and see a man sitting in civilian cloths at the table, well I guess that is it. We failed the test and are about to get to go home.......

The man asks us all to have a seat around the table and that he will be handling our return details to our I wasn't sure if I wanted to be a capsuleer or not but to know that you failed a test where you don't even know what the criteria was, that is just annoying.

We all sit, my fellows have the same looks on their faces, the look of having failed.

The man places his hands on the conference room table and just looks at us for a second...come on what is he waiting for....just tell us when we get to go home and be done with it......but no he just keeps sitting there looking at fellows both just look back at him just like I am wondering what his deal is......that is when it hits me....he was the man that came to see me first at the university with that woman over a week ago.....but he had been in military uniform at the he is dressed in civilian the realization starts to dawn on me he smiles and says yes......he did meet with us all originally and that he is a capsuleer himself.....and that we have passed the screening and will be able to become capsuleers if we want to.

I am sure other things were said after that, probably very important things about the future and what being a capsuleer means.....but I have no idea what he said to us for at least an mind is a total blank.

He shuts down the projection unit in the table and we begin to ask him questions about capsuleers and what they are capable of. My first question was about the cybernetic implants they have and that they were supposed to keep one permanently inside their pods, that is what all the dramas always show. That they can't leave once they have the implants actually in their heads.

He just smiles and says that is what makes for good drama and that the implants have never been like that, although the first generations were much more unpleasant to look at and did hang outside of the skull which most people found unsettling or annoying. Over the years they have been miniaturized so they are fully contained in the skull now. I have over 100 million credits worth of implants in my own skull right now, he tells us. My mouth and the others drop open. 100 MILLION CREDITS, of implants.....just in his head......that kind of money would set up my family for life. And he goes about telling us this like it is nothing.

He tells us that if we wish to become capsuleers that all we have to do is ask and they will take us through the initial training period and get us ready to join the elite ranks of the capsuleer community. But he also tells us that this isn't just fun and games, this is real. Once you make the transition to be a capsuleer there is for all intents and purposes no turning back. We will have to leave our families behind and pick new names and new identities. For if we were to ever associate ourselves with them, they would become vulnerable to attack by the enemies of our nation and the enemies of the capsuleer class. Those who believe the capsuleers are an abomination on the face of new eden.

I sit back in shock, as does one of my fellows, the other simply smiles and says I'm in. Just like that he is walking away from his family and friends. No backward glance, not a second of hesitation on his part. The capsuleer nods and sends him out to meet with someone about getting his material possessions transferred to the training station.

To leave my family, my mother, my father, my brother and his kids, and my girlfriend behind and never see them can I do that......what kind of person does that make me.......I jump when the capsuleer replies that makes you a capsuleer. I hadn't even realized that I was speaking out loud. The woman with us says that she can't do it, she can't leave her family behind and never see them again. The capsuleer just nods and tells her to see the person outside the conference room and she will arrange for travel back to her homeworld. Then it is down to me, an academic that took a stupid survey to help out another academic and here I am trying to decide my fate after finding out that I am capable of becoming a capsuleer.

I sit staring at nothing for a long time, I don't know what to do. So finally I simply ask him about his family and why he chose to leave them all behind when he became a capsuleer? He looks directly at me and says that he didn't, he sees his family all the time. My anger builds and I demand an explanation of what the hell he is talking about, he just told us that we couldn't see them ever again. As it turns out that statement and our reactions were the final I hate psychology and all that crap. Neither of my fellows will be offered training to become capsuleers, they don't have the mental strength to handle that kind of stress without simply retreating or cutting themselves off from the world. And neither of those traits are needed, or wanted in someone as powerful as a capsuleer. I tell him that I need some time to think about this, he agrees and walks out of the room, telling me as he leaves to just push the call button on the wall if I need anything.

I don't know how long I sat there waiting and thinking about my fate and what to do with my life......I push the call button and one of the medical technicians comes in and I ask her for some water and to see that capsuleer that was here. He returns after perhaps 30 minutes.....he walks in still in the same civilian cloths and sits down at the table. Have you decided he asks me........yes I reply......I want to become a capsuleer.

Again he simply nods. He stands and offers me his hand and says that we should get started on my training whenever I wish and that initial training will take approximately 6 months to get the implants and teach me how to use the neural interfaces properly. He also tells me that they will be arranging for me to return to my homeworld and that I can tell only those closest to me what I have now become. Once I begin the training I will be cut off from all the people in my life to help my mind focus on the tasks at hand. Once the training is completed I will have joined the elite capsuleer ranks for the republic and be able to contact my family again. Only this time it will be on my dime and I will be flying my own capsuleer starship back to see them......


I jump out of my bed as the GQ alarm goes off.....

Damn it I have only been asleep for a couple hours, this had better not be an alliance level drill or I am going to be really pissed off. I run out of my quarters and jump into my pod and connect to the neural interface, which I insert into the station net..........oh this is not good........

Ranger Gama

The Beginning Part 1


I slowly open my eyes and look around to see a clean white room filled with equipment and medical personnel.......they are speaking to me and each other........adjusting equipment on the tube.........then I am on the table as they clear the fluid off of me......I ask where I am and what happened to my ship.....the tech replies that I am at the FA station in YI and that my ship is gone, along with my last clone......those bastards on the gate destroyed my ship and then podded I lay on the table waiting for them to finish their tests and make sure that this clone has fully accepted the transfer my mind flashes back over old memories, they say that is normal while your new body is processing all the newly downloaded information but sometimes it is most unpleasant.......

I am sitting in my office at the lab doing some routine paperwork when a man and woman show up. I don't recognize them but they are dressed in military uniforms, yet another distraction from my work. Hello the man says, we are looking for ******* is he here? I reply that is me and what can I help you with? From that point on my life will never be the same. The woman then speaks up and asks me if I have ever been in space and seen the inside of a capsuleer starship? Really are you kidding those people are insane, I reply, neurally linked to technology, those implants that come out of their heads and make them prisoners inside those pod things of I prefer to be here on the ground and in my office, trying to get my work done.

I mean don't get me wrong I enjoy being in space, I have caught the sub-orbital shuttles around the planet for travel and been on the space stations throughout the system when I needed to, even been to some other worlds on vacation with my parents over the years but never on a capsuleer starship.

I finally ask them what they want with me and begin to start doing my paperwork again, figuring they would get the hint and leave....they don't....the woman introduces themselves as recruiting officers for the Republic Military School...a capsuleer training school. I acknowledge their introduction and wish them well still having no idea why they are here talking to me. Strangely enough, aside from the first sentence the man spoke, I realize later, he never says another word to me......odd but to each his own, I have always wasn't until much later that I discovered who and what he really was....

The woman asks me if I have recently taken a survey for some researchers on mental processing...sure I replied I got a e-request from a university researcher who is doing something on how humans store and process information, quick little survey to help out a fellow researcher, we get so many of those things that I didn't think anything of it. Apparently I should turns out that 'survey' was actually a test sent to people all over Minmatar space, in different forms for different groups of people looking for those that might possess the unique skills to become a capsuleer. I can't believe what she just said to me, I took that survey a couple hours ago, and they have processed the results and sent a team to see me. Incredible.

My boss comes in and wants to know what is going on, when I start to tell him the woman asks him to step outside with her companion, which he does. They return a few minutes later and my boss says that I can have all the time I need with them and that he will see me later...most unusual of him. He walks out with a slight backwards glance at the man, who isn't paying any attention to him and is focused once more on me. I don't think I like that.....definitely don't like that.......

By now several of the people I work with have come out of the lab and into the office trying to see what is going on. Two people dressed in military uniforms is unusual in a civilian research lab, they are all curious as to what I have done to warrant this visit.

The woman asks me to come with them for some further testing and join a small pool of capsuleer candidates that are meeting in the nearby system at the Republic Military School. I ask her how long this will take and she replies that the basic testing requires a week. When I inform her that I can't leave my research for a week at the drop of a hat she informs me that the lab and I will be compensated for our time and the resulting loss in research. My fellow lab mates say I should go, take it as an unplanned and all expenses paid vacation....I deserve it. I just finished defending my PhD and I should go and have a little fun.

All right, I tell the woman I will go but I have to make a couple calls first to let some people know that I will be gone. She nods and says that they have a secure line in their vehicle and I can use it while they take me to my place to gather a couple things before leaving. When I inform them that I have my own vehicle and my own communications system to make those calls, they say that isn't possible that by agreeing to come with them I am now under military jurisdiction and that for my own safety my vehicle will be left at the university until I return for it.

I stare at them in total disbelief, I didn't agree to join the military, and protective custody for what....that is when the woman points out that capsuleers are rare and that the republics enemies would not hesitate to kill one, before they became a capsuleer and thus posed a threat to their own programs. What the hell have I gotten myself into I think as we are walking out of the building toward a nice looking car sitting at the entrance to the building, with a second man in uniform sitting at the controls.

We get in and I start to tell the driver/pilot where to go when the woman assures me that he already knows where my home is.....this is not good at all....

I place my two calls from the vehicle/ship/prison, one to my mother letting her and my father know that I will be gone for a little while doing some research in another system and not to worry about it....I lie and tell her I am a last minute replacement for someone else in my department and that everything is fine.....I wish that I could believe that. The next call is to my girlfriend and I repeat the same set of lies to her that I told to my mother. This isn't going well so far at all, I have lied to my parents and to my girlfriend about going to another star I am going to be in so much trouble with them when I get back.

We get to my place and I ask them what kind of clothing I need to bring with me and start to do some quick packing. I am glad that I had cleaned my clothes just two days ago, had plenty of stuff for a jump out to another system without notice....and hey at least I don't need to go and pick up some food for the next week, I was out of basically everything and had planned on going to get stuff on my way home....something positive right....RIGHT....yeah I think so.

The next part of the trip is boring and spectacular all at the same time. We arrive at the space port and board a shuttle to take us up into space to the station near the planet...nothing special here I have been on one of these types of shuttles many times...yet something seems different to me. That is when I realize that we didn't go through any of the normal departure systems, we just got on board right from the ground vehicle and shot up into the security waiting for the pattern to clear for our take off...nothing...just got out of the vehicle, sat down and boom we are in space.......this is not good. What the hell have I gotten myself into here?????

As we approach the station I can see many ships coming and going from it, maybe 4 or 5, it is most impressive to see that many starships in one naive I was about what impressive really means. We dock at the station without any delay, but that isn't all that uncommon, these stations can handle many times the amount of traffic they see out here anyways. We get off the shuttle and head to another docking bay, this one with a capsuleer starship docked in it. I have no idea what kind of ship it is but it is huge. Again we board without anyone doing any customs or checking us for weapons or explosives nothing, and the security on the stations checks everyone for weapons and explosives, or poison gas or whatever the hell else someone might be carrying, but for us nothing.......this is not good.

We board the ship and are launched out of the dock and headed to the local stargate for the jump into the next system, I am told we have to go 3 jumps to get to the school and that it shouldn't take very long, maybe 20 minutes. I notice that everyone around me on this ship is also wearing a military uniform. Well that I guess is the first thing in this whole situation that actually makes sense, they are bringing me out in a military ship. We make the jumps and then dock at another station in short order. When the woman comes back to get me and take me to the docking bay, I step out onto the lift platform that will take me into the main portion of the station but she remains behind. I turn to ask her and the lift just starts moving and she is walking away......ok now this isn't good at all.....yes this is very bad...

As the lift arrives at the station end of the docking bay a new man in the same military uniform is waiting for me. He introduces himself and asks me to follow him to the medical wing where they will be doing the testing to see if I am really a candidate to become a capsuleer or if this whole thing has been a gigantic waste of time.

As we are walking down the passageway into the station I see many different people around me, some are in uniforms of both the republic military and some in the Gallente military, our closest allies. While others are in regular civilian dress, and still more are dressed in what look like uniforms but aren't from any branch of either the republic or Gallente military that I am familiar with.

We walk for what seems like hours, but in reality is probably 10 minutes, before getting to a hatch that leads into the medical wing. The hatch slides open and............

All at once the flashbacks end as the technicians confirm that the transfer is complete and everything checks out. I am free to go. As I walk out the door, the lead technician reminds me to make sure to purchase my new backup clone and to make sure that I have one with the enough internal memory for all of the skills that I have learned. I thank him for his reminder, but I will not forget that. To get podded is bad enough, to wake up and find some of your skills missing because you forgot to upgrade the memory capacity of your backup clone....that is just stupid. Now that this horrible encounter is over I head to my quarters here to get dressed in my own uniform and get ready to head back out into space, but first I have to see about the arrangements for my lost crew. I need to see if any of them survived the destruction of my ship......

Ranger Gama

In The Blink of an Eye

It is amazing how quickly things can go from calm to disaster in such a small window of time.

A few days ago our head of logistics sends out an alert stating that we have a great deal of supplies and equipment needed for infrastructure upgrades for several systems within FA space. He calls for capital ships and sub-capitals to provide protection along with any available freighter pilots to move these supplies in. Realizing that I have a few hours before I am required to be in the YI station for yet another day of meetings with people, I swear some times these people act like they are nothing but mindless robots running an algorithm pretending to be human. Anyways, I have some time and decide that a logistics operation will be perfect it will not take very much time and we will be using a titan to bridge to the target location, pick up the freighters and bridge back. Nothing to it, I was involved in an operation just like about 2 weeks ago. It all went well until myself, truen1ght and two others accidentally bridged into the system when we weren’t supposed to and had to make our way back through the entire length of fountain, but I have already talked about that story.

Anyways, back to last night, the call was for battleships fitted for close range combat, well my maelstrom is configured for long-range combat and I didn’t feel like spending a whole bunch of credits to buy short range weapons, when they are so rarely used. So I decided to give my battleship crew the night off, they deserve it now and than, and got into my Wolf class assault ship. The wolf is fast, maneuverable and heavily armed for a ship of its size, in addition to the weapons, its armor and shields are stronger than normal frigates which allow it to stay in combat and absorb hits which would normally destroy such a small hulled ship. Having decided that I should fit for locking down anyone that might try to jump after our freighters I pulled my warp scrambler II off and fitted a warp disruptor II onto the ship. The scrambler has a much stronger ability to prevent ships from jumping away, but the disruptor has more than twice the range, and for sitting on a gate range is better than strength, or so I think.

We get the call to form up in YI and I launch my ship, sitting outside the station are about a dozen of my fellow alliance mates. Several minutes go by and the order is given to split the fleet into two groups, one to sit at the station and watch the freighters that will be jumping out, and the other to head to one of the jump bridges and watch it. Given my call sign I am assigned to the jump bridge portion, I warp out to the jump bridge and wait with several others. It is very dull at this point….we are waiting and nothing is happening.

The FC is using his titan to bridge people around in the Fountain area to the redevous point in Cloud Ring where the op will bridge out to the target low sec system of Chardalane and the connected high sec system of Adecyne. We were tasked to cover the freighters, which by the end numbered at least 12, while they loaded and came through.

We finally bridge out to Chardalane and the FC asks for someone to volunteer that is in a fast tackle ship, I respond and he tells me to go ahead and jump into the high sec system of Adecyne and to watch the gate. WTF really that is my job to watch the high sec side of the stargate….ah well I guess no action for me today. However, the role of scout needs to be done and I did volunteer for duty not knowing what was going to be asked of me. I move into position and wait in the high sec system watching the gate while the rest of the sub-capital fleet deploys on the other side, in Chardalane. We have some minor people show up and everything is going well, our logistics guys are picking up everything and getting ready to head back out when a stealth-bomber arrives at the gate. I send the warning to the fleet to standby that a hostile ship is about to come through and he does but manages to get away before the fleet could lock him.

A short while later a neutral Rohk (Caldari Battleship) arrives at the gate and simply sits waiting, I start to get a bad feeling about him. I thought about asking for permission to knock him away from the gate but I don’t ask, and that might have proven to be a major mistake on my part.

Our freighters loaded with components begin to undock and start to align out to the stargate in preparation for the jump. They all warp to the stargate and prepare to begin jumping through into Chardalane, the neutral battleship is still sitting right on top of the gate. The FC orders freighters to come through 2 at a time and begin to warp to the titan which is located at a starbase. After maybe 6 of them had jumped through the Rokh pilot also jumps and the fight is on, he takes the opening salvos from the fleet, and while the fleet is focused on him the cloaked stealth-bomber from earlier lights a cyno field and a whole hostile fleet bridges in. Once the Rokh jumps in the FC orders the freighters to hold on the gate and standby. The hope is that the fleet will kill the hostiles and we can get on with the operation.

The enemy fleet includes two carriers and over 40 support ships. While my fellow pilots and their crews fight for their lives just on the other side of the stargate I am forced to remain in Adecyne and watch over the freighters still holding on the gate. I can hear my fellow pilots calling for help, hear the confusion as orders are given and subsequently changed. Two voices are giving orders on the communication channels and while not directly contradictory to each other they are not speaking in clear terms for their respective group, one appeared to be the sub-capital and one the capital component commanders. This confusion along with glory hounding by several members of the fleet, ultimately proved fatal to this operation.

I do not know for sure what happened on the other side of that gate, but I did hear the order to pull back to the titan and prepare to withdraw. A large number of alliance ships were lost in the operation including my friend Truen1ghts, scimitar. Truen1ght has written a nice overview of the operation from his perspective as well. ((See below))

After our freighters all docked up in Adecyne I waited for a few minutes and jumped through to Chardalane to meet the titan and withdraw from the system.

When I jumped my ship through I didn't know for sure what to expect, given the intense combat that had just occurred I was expecting some hostile ships to be in the area waiting and yet their was no sign of any intact ships on the gate. Wreckage everywhere spread around the gate showing how many ships had died in just the previous few minutes. I jump to Truen1ght's location near the titan and prepare to bridge out of the system.

Given the frantic pace to withdraw I was not able to search the wrekage and retrieve any of alliances crew members that had managed to get into their escape pods and flee before their ship was destroyed. Given the reports of how fast the action occurred I doubt if many of their capsuleer commanders even had the chance to sound an evacuation before they were destroyed. I wish I could have stayed to search for survivors but with such a large enemy fleet in the area I couldn't risk my own crews lives to remain in one place for more than a few seconds. I hope that my crew understands why we had to leave the area so quickly....and I hope that the families of those fallen crew members understand why we couldn't stay and search for their loved ones.

I hope that those that managed to survive the battle got into escape pods and were able to either jump through into the safety of Adecyne or managed to dock at one of the main stations in Chardalane. General protocol for capsuleers states that those crew members that survive the destruction of their ship are allowed to return to their families without being summary targeted. Having seen no sign of escape pods on the sensors in the few seconds we were in range, I do not know if the enemy afforded them that traditional right.

Ranger Gama


No Rest For The Weary

Fountain has completely fallen to CF forces, a small handful of systems remain to be formally claimed yet it is only a matter of time before they are. With the remaining systems now firmly under our control, I turned mine and my crews’ weary eyes to the task of securing this newly acquired space and making it our home. I was looking forward to a few days of R&R in our new space, exploring the systems and seeing what kind of resources are available in our new area. The corp is discussing moving out to Fountain or remaining in Cloud Ring. I have to say I am not sure which would be best. There are definite advantages to living in Fountain; the main constellation that FA has taken control of is very rich in resources, but moving all of the corps operations out to this area will not be easy. In fact our logistic people, really two or three guys, have just finished a big move out just a couple of weeks ago. It will cost a lot of carrier and jump-freighter fuel if we have to move that stuff again. For now we wait and enjoy the riches of this area.A few days ago Truen1ght was doing his scanning thing, looking for things to do and finds in our new area found an unstable wormhole that lead to, of all places, Amarr high sec space. In fact this system was just 10 jumps from the Gallente market hub of Dodixie, which was very good. Following the invasion, the markets in the Fountain region are pretty light and we are needing to get our industry people out here manufacturing ships, modules, and ammunition. Until they get going, we have to bring in all of the supplies. So myself, Truen1ght, and two other allied pilots decided to help seed the market in the area of Fountain we are based in. The operation was a great success. I went all the way out to Jita to pick up equipment and bring it in along with ammunition and isotopes for ships. Got everything moved into our systems and put onto the markets no problem. I was impressed by how quickly it got organized, and we had guys watching systems looking out for us and everything.

The next day the head of Rebellion Alliance decides that he doesn’t want to be part of the alliance any longer and disbands the alliance. With the disbanding of Rebellion Alliance, they have lost control over many systems along the northern frontier of NC space with the DRF (Drone Russian Forces). After the Rebellion Alliance was disbanded and their claim on their systems was lost, DRF forces took advantage of the situation, as anyone would have, and launched a massive invasion of Geminate. Frantic calls went out throughout the CF and NC membership to come and reinforce those areas and push back the invading DRF pilots.

Initial reports stated that 800 DRF pilots comprised the first wave and brought with them TCU’s and SBU’s to take control of the systems. While it appears as though the CF and NC were caught completely by surprise by the disbanding of Rebellion Alliance, the DRF does appear to have prior knowledge and were prepared. Within 10 minutes of the disbanding and loss of control of those systems the DRF pilots had attacked. While gathering a major invasion fleet and the equipment needed to take control of a system in such a short time certainly argues for advanced warning to the DRF of the coming disbanding of Rebellion Alliance, it has not been made public if the leader of Rebellion Alliance has betrayed the NC. I believe he has.

Yet again, after promising my crew some R&R, we are thrust back into the war for control of many systems. Yesterday I learned of a major battle underway but I am not familiar with this region of space and the commander of the fleet had make a mistake in the spelling of the name of the system the battle took place in. I was not able to join my corpmates and participate in the battle. Intelligence reports from the battle paint a very sad picture for the NC: 10 Titans and 5 Supercarriers destroyed and only 2 Titans and 2 Supercarriers killed. Perhaps it is fortunate that I was unable to find that system, I probably saved my battleship and my crew from destruction. Now it remains to be seen if the DRF will continue to fight or if they will withdraw from the area. The NC/CF counter-attack took them by surprise in the initial few hours after their invasion and they lost virtually all of the space they had occupied, but the still have strongholds that will need to be reduced before this region can be considered secure. Only time will tell if the NC/CF has the will to continue another campaign following the conclusion of two back to back large scale deployments.

Ranger Gama

The Fountain Campaign Continues

Following the fall of 6VDT to TEST, I returned with my crew to the main staging system of PNQY. Having determined that my services would no longer be needed for a few weeks on that front, I returned via jump clone, to FA home territory in the YI system. This gave my crew much needed R&R after the 6VDT siege. I returned to find our home territory rife with hostile gatecamps and roaming groups of enemy ships. While jumping to another system to check out a report of strange signals I received in 1-N, my Hurricane class Battlecruiser was attacked and destroyed by 9 hostile ships deep within FA territory. This attack was complete, including the loss of my pod and my entire crews escape pods. Fortunately for me, as a capsuleer, my back-up clone was activated within the YI system. My crew was not so lucky.

Death and destruction are a part of war, and my crew knew what they were signing up for when they agreed to serve on a capsuleer warship. However, following the activation of my clone within the YI system I received an urgent message calling for ships to proceed to the jump bridges and head to the rally point for an attack against Blast within the Fountain region. Rather than being able to mourn my lost crew and giving the rest of my people a chance to grieve for their fallen comrades, I was forced to launch my ship and proceed to the rally point for a Titan mediated assault into Blast territory. I am sure that my crew resents being forced into another siege on such short notice and without the time to honor their dead, but duty has always come with a heavy burden for those that serve.

I gather my crew aboard my alpha fit Maelstrom class battleship and launch into space. We make a mad dash for the rally point in 5-M and barely make it. We are launched by the titan across many light-years to a system near 6VDT. My crew and I are now once again deep in enemy territory, on our way to participate in the sieges of not one but many systems. With the fall of 6VDT to CF forces earlier in the week organized resistance from IT alliance in the region has collapsed. The local inhabitants are the only ones putting up warships and fleets attempting to prevent our takeover of their space. While I can not help but admire their determination to make us fight for every meter of space, they are hopelessly outnumbered, yet they continue to offer resistance.

Following several jumps we enter into the new campaign region for the FA alliance, the area that will fall under our direct control once the shooting stops and the wreckage of ships disperses in the depths of space. Already FA has taken control of several systems within the Fountain region, and more are to come in the following week. My battleship formed up with the rest of the fleet and we proceeded to attack and reinforce POS's, IHUB's, and Stations along the path from 57-KJB to PXF-RF. While sov warfare is boring to everyone, and no one wants to be in fleets attacking stations and POS's all day, they are needed to take control over hostile space.

Each day the fleets are formed and further destruction of Blast assets occurs, whether it is a POS and all its modules being destroyed, or the reinforcement of stations and the use of disruptor bubbles to prevent enemy ships from escaping, the losses taken by Blast during this campaign amount to many billions of ISK. In fact, during an operation which occurred yesterday, our FC informed the fleet that the alliance had offered to buy the space from Blast, allow them to evacuate their assets and even provide friendly escorts out of the combat zone. The Blast leadership refused and thus we are relegated to shooting and destroying everything that we come across. It is most unfortunate that the Blast leadership choose to fight rather than allow us to buy this space from them, but in New Eden animosity runs very deep.

With us relegated to the long path of sov warfare, the needs of the fleet for supplies is critical and our logistics people have come through in a major way. Ammunition is being shipped in from bases within Cloud Ring on a regular basis so warships generally do not have to leave the field for long to replenish stores. Friendly POS's have been set up in all the attacked systems and most are stocked with ammunition that is free for the fleet members to use. So far in this campaign, which has only lasted 2.5 days, I have fired over 15 thousand rounds of large projectile ammunition. If not for the supplies brought in by our logistics people I would be almost out of ammunition at the present time, but my ship is sitting with nearly a 75% ammo load.

Once this campaign is completed I will be returning to Cloud Ring and my corporation's home system, to assist in the efforts there. The main issue at present is the lack of roaming patrols throughout FA space which resulted in the loss of my Hurricane and crew a few days ago. A meeting held by our corp leadership yesterday before the start of active operations discussed the need for small fast reaction teams to be on active patrol within FA alliance territory to respond to gangs like those that attacked me. While even the largest of alliances cannot patrol every system under its control and prevent these attacks from ever happening, the absolute lack of any patrols has made these pirates and raiders much more bold. It is only a matter of time before industrial activity takes a severe hit if they do not stop. My corporation appears to be willing to take up the mantel of fast reaction teams and roaming patrols to help step on these guys and force them out of FA territory.

But before any of that can occur the fighting in the Fountain region must come to an end. Given the lack of IT and Blast organized resistance projections indicate that this will occur soon...
Ranger Gama
Ordos Humanitas
Fatal Ascension

Siege of 6VDT

I was sitting in station waiting for The Mitanni to begin his speech, just chilling in my Wolf. Figured he would have something to say that might be interesting but wasn’t sure what to expect. You see, I had just moved out from empire about a week before and joined Ordos Humanitas which is part of the Fatal Ascension alliance. I had heard rumors of a big operation to occur after his speech, but because of prior commitments, I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to participate. Anyways, The Mitanni comes on and says that there are so many of us that the communications system has to be restarted and expanded with additional power, which is kind of cool I guess.

After about 15 or 20 minutes he begins speaking; nothing much to it really...basic stuff. I thought it was a better speech than what Sir Molle (IT) had given a couple days before; it was shorter for sure and that is always nice.

The Mitanni began speaking about the new assault that would strike at the heart of IT alliances staging base in the Fountain region (6VDT). This attack would take place following the approximately 30 min Q&A that he had promised everyone would occur at the end of his speech.

Well, that Q&A never happened as intel came down that the IT members The Mitanni had allowed into the channel to listen had sent out frantic messages to IT personnel to begin a massive evac of the 6VDT system before we arrived. Orders came down to form fleets and leave right away and not wait.

So I figured 'hell why not?' I added some extra ammo to the bay of the ship and I was racing off to the rendezvous point (J5A). Because I was flying in a Wolf class assault ship, my role was fast tackle, to pin the targets so the heavy warships could kill them. This put me into one of the support fleets that was headed to the target system. Everyone was going crazy trying to get out to 6VDT in time to catch the enemy before they managed to evacuate their assets. Even now, intelligence on what was/is still remaining in the system at the time of the invasion is unreliable. Some are saying it was nothing some are saying a lot still remains.

What we know for sure is that several super-capital ships got trapped and managed to escape later during the siege. In the end nearly 1000 allied pilots participated in the initial attack into the system.

Anyways, I digress. We got to J5A and the FC ordered us to wait while the heavy ships jumped ahead to avoid causing traffic control problems in the systems between us and the target. Very little hostile presence was encountered during the jumps. One enemy interdictor did manage to trap us between stargates on the way at just the right position to prevent us from easily realigning and completing our jump. He escaped before the group I was with could kill him. Our FC warped us to a nearby belt and we warped back onto the stargate just in time to watch that interdictor do it again, only this time the guys managed to kill his ship before he escaped. As far as I know this was the first kill of the 6VDT operation: a lone interdictor that sacrificed himself to buy his friends a little more time to evacuate their assets. Although we didn’t encounter a single camp, later fleets did report much heavier gate camps by hostile forces attempting to restrict our resupply and reinforcements. We were relegated to sitting on jump gates waiting for the order to jump into the next system.

We get word that the heavy guys are into the system and the FC orders us to jump in. We come out and we all hold our jump transit cloaks while watching for hostiles on the gate. A lone enemy stealth bomber attempts to strike the fleet on the gate but causes no casualties. I was much closer to the blast and lost about 50% shields, but they recharged quickly enough.

Just after the bomb attack, the fleet warps to the station, which by this point was already under fire, and we begin attacking the station services along with our battlecruiser and battleship fleet. As a Wolf, it was kind of pointless for me to shoot a station ,so I did a little bit but mostly I was looking for hostile ships to attack. Given the size of our fleets, none appeared at the station.

After a few minutes a cyno goes up approximately 60 km from me. I see it but no one is saying anything about it. Right as I get ready to report it to the FC, a huge fleet of capital and super-capital ships jumps in, including several titans. My heart stops, they are all showing up as yellow, red or neutral. Not a single blue among them. For a second my mind just stops, then I believe that the enemy has managed to get a fleet here to stop us and we are all about to die, and our FC orders us to move to engage and pin the capitals for our own ships to kill. We knew that friendly capitals were on the way. I had just started to move towards the enemy when the FC comes frantically on the comms yelling “BLUE CAPITALS. BLUE CAPITALS. DO NOT ENGAGE”. It was the most interesting 10 seconds of the day. We all reverse course and come back after the station, while the capitals just crush it.

FC tells us that friendly POS’s are going to be placed in the system, one for each alliance with pilots to allow for safe locations for repair and refit as needed. The rest of the night goes like that, our fleet attempts to kill the stealth bombers and other covert operations ships that are trying to harass our guys, with limited success on our part. Our logistics guys assemble the POS’s for our coalition while others put up large t2 warp disruptor bubbles on the enemy station, all hostile POS’s, and the gates.

I spend most of my time orbiting the station or a stargate waiting with my scrambler to trap hostiles, or jumping with the quick reaction fleet to those being attacked. The siege thus enters into the stage of waiting and watching.

For nearly 5 days we have very little contact with the enemy. They try some breakouts and are meet with heavy resistance. About 12 hours before the final reinforcement timer on the station is set to end I get a call from my friend and corpmate Truen1ght. He has been attacked at one of the gates and his ship heavily damaged. A major enemy fleet has come through the gate he was watching. He has managed to jump away to a friendly POS, I frantically sound the general quarters alarm on the ship and bring the systems to full combat readiness. By the time I have gotten everything ready he has repaired his armor and has jumped back into the action. I join up with the main fleet and the fight is on.

We jump around after the enemy managing to engage and catch a few each time. The failure to crush the fleet comes mostly at the hands of our own interdictor pilots who launch their spheres no matter how far from the enemy they actually, which traps the majority of our pilots in the fields and not the enemy. After 3 incidences the overall combat commander orders the interdictors not to bubble anything unless specifically ordered to. We get better at taking them and than the enemy makes a mistake and jumps to one of the gates in the wrong position, interdictors this time manage to trap the enemy fleet and they take heavy losses.

Almost immediately following that engagement, another gate in the system reports they are under attack, a new group of hostiles has jumped into the system and engaged one of our camps. The entire fleet warps to the target gate and manages to catch most of the enemy fleet still in bubbles, our interdictors performed excellently here. The 2nd enemy fleet is virtually wiped out.

We spend the next several hours flying around trying to catch the covert operations people they have inserted into the system, again to limited success. Their covert operations people are generally doing very well, mostly due to the incompetence of our own pilots. Ship commanders are not paying attention to what they are doing and allowing their ships to move hundreds of kilometers from our camps, and thus presenting themselves as a viable and convenient targets for isolated attacks. I don’t know how many ships we lose, but the FC’s and the rest of us are getting pissed off at the stupidity of these pilots. Battleship after battleship and battlecruiser after battlecruiser are blown apart by these surprise attacks. No ship was attacked that was in the company of fellow pilots only the isolated ones were.

Given the enemy's success in attacking these stupid pilots, the FC made the call to start using them as bait for the enemy. Our entire fleet of fast tackle ships pulled back into a central location and began to fly toward the station were we had a ship volunteer to sit by itself and pretend to be asleep. We had a cloaked interdictor sit near him to trap the covert operations people when they came to attack. We messed up the first attempt by being late, but the 2nd try worked like a charm and several enemy stealth bombers were blown apart. Our pilots gave no quarter and every evacuation pod that could be found was targeted and destroyed.

Following the successful bait, the enemy did not attempt another attack for at least 90 minutes. Before they were averaging one attack every 15 – 30 minutes. Due to this apparent stand down of their forces, I returned to my alliance's POS, and ordered my crew to stand down for several hours and get some rest.

The following morning, having seen no additional attempts by the enemy to attack or evacuate the system, our forces succeeded in taking the system and the fleets formed up to attack the neighboring system of 7BX and take it as well. I again formed up with the fleet in my Wolf and was place on security duty at one of the stargates waiting for an attack that would never come.

The following day after the TCU’s had come online for both systems, they were declared safe, and this phase of the operation in the Fountain region has come to an end. Following one final afternoon in the 6VDT system, the coalition high command arranged titan bridges for much of the fleet to return to PNQY. We now await the next phase in this conquest.

It is believed by many that the Fountain region will fall more rapidly now that these systems have been taken and the enemy has lost their primary offensive striking power.

However, in war nothing is ever certain and we cannot underestimate them. They may have evacuated the majority of their assets, as some have claimed, or they may still be trapped in the depths of the system waiting for the chance to escape. Only time will tell. For myself I am returning with my crew to FA home space to begin working up and helping to secure industrial operations in our heartland.

Our next major operations into Fountain should begin soon and we must all be ready.
Ranger Gama
Ordos Humanitas
Fatal Ascension