Monday, February 23, 2009

Flexing Muscle

Selina sat quietly listening to the chatter over the comms. Only perhaps an hour before, she had been presented by the corp directorate with a rather pleasant addition to her hanger, although temporary, to which she was now linked in and ready to go. The feeling of being in control of such a large ship was a bit intimidating at first and she had to remind herself time and time again that it really was no different controlling the Dominix class battleship she now sat in, compared to the little frigates and cruisers she had become so used to. But they needed heavy hitters and since she had the skills, it was suggested she finally put 'em to use.

It was so strange to see the reports she'd received from her engineering and weapons officers. The amount of firepower the ship was capable of spewing forth, the amount of damage it was capable of was certainly an intimidating ship indeed.

Strangely enough though, it wasn't the first battleship she'd received this past week. Parked nearby was another battleship that now belonged to her. The hull of a massive Megathron class battleship glistened in the lights from the hanger. Another imposing sight indeed. If the Dominix didn't intimidate her, and hopefully her enemies, the Megathron certainly did. However, reality is that both ships would stay parked in the hangers majority of the time. She'd purchased the Megathron for the sole purpose of doing high level missions with some of her corpmates until she was capable of doing them herself, and the Dominix battleship was given to her by the corp solely for the purpose of lowsec corp operations, such as the one she was about to embark on.

She was quickly brought back from her thoughts though as the call went out over the comms.

"All ships, commence undocking procedures."

Immediately Selina did one last pre-flight check before radioing control tower.

"Control, this is Big Momma requesting departure clearance to undock"

"Big Momma, this is Control. You are cleared for undocking procedures. Fly safe out there."

"Roger that Control. See you again in a few hours."

"I'll hold you to that."

Selina inwardly smiled as she disconnected the control comm and switched to the on-board ship comms. "Jassiel, notify the crew captain he is cleared to undock the ship."

"Understood Selina."

Almost immediately her vision went dark as the camera vision from the hanger's "eyes" disconnected. For a short while there, all she was darkness, a very disturbing feeling one might add, as the ship exited the station. This was a job left to the crew captain since there were a number of procedures and too many safety codes and red tape for a pod pilot to simply navigate their way out amongst all the other incoming and outgoing traffic. One could almost think of it like in the old days of the massive ocean vessels navigating through the harbors, where a heavily trained harbor master would board the ship and basically take command to navigate the ship down the narrow passages to its port. Either way, as soon as the ship had exited the hanger, her own camera drones were deployed and her "vision" once again returned, along with her control over the ship.

Already a fair amount of ships were amassed outside the station. Ships ranging from battleships, battlecruisers, logistics, force recons, and electronic warfare. Surprisingly, no small frigates but then they weren't particularly necessary for this op which would explain why she was in a battleship herself.

After a short moment, once all the ships had undocked and were now sitting idle outside the station, the fleet commander called for silence on the comms and began his run-down of operational procedures and the purpose and goals at hand. Basically, the fleet was headed back to main empire, engaging any pirates that were unfortunate to find themselves in range of their guns. Once in Empire, they would then be meeting up with another group, to include an Orca, a capitol industrial ship. From there it would become an escort operation to safely bring the Orca the roughly 20 jumps through low sec to their base in Solitude. With any other group, that might have been a nerve racking occasion. But with the magnitude and power of this fleet, it would take one hell of an opposing fleet to even consider engaging. For those who weren't already in a significant fleet, they would see the Orca on the scanners, but it would take a lot of very fast coordination to get a fleet together capable of engaging the escorting ships... just to take out the industrial ship.

After the brief spiel from the FC, and a quick report from the already deployed covert recons along the intended route, the FC gave the order to align for the first gate and shortly after they were on their way.

For the most part the trip to Empire was rather uneventful. There was one moment, about half way at a certain choke point, where a rather large group of pirates had set up camp, attempting to get some kills on any random travelers. The fleets recon reported the various ship types and after very short deliberation, the go-ahead was made for a battleship to jump in as bait. Sure enough, the pirates engaged at which point the rest of the fleet jumped through the stargate. As soon as she'd regained her senses from the jump, Selina only had enough time to scowl as the pirates quickly disengaged and ran. "Pussies!" she mentally screamed as the last of the pirate ships disappeared into the distance. Though yes, they would have most likely been decimated, their numbers in comparison to her fleets were fairly even and it would have certainly been an interesting fight. The recon was able to track down one of the pirate outlaws to the nearby sun and the fleet immediately warped to its location only to find the ship 100km out and with the appearance of the fleet near to his location, he once again turned tail and ran.

So with the pirates obviously not wanting to stand their ground, the order was given to move out and continue on.

Within due time, the fleet reached highsec Empire once again and docked up at the only station in system. After a short wait, the Orca and its small contingent arrived. With a quick check of its modules and systems, the fleet once again undocked and gathered outside the station. Instructions were reissued, checks were made to insure everyone was understanding their roles and the operational procedures and shortly after, they were back into lowsec, their headings taking them back along the same path they'd just basically cleared.

When they reached the system where the pirates were, sure enough, they were still present but with the arrival of the fleet, it seemed they had paid attention and wasted no time in retreating back to their safe spots. Thus the fleet passed with Orca in tow, all the way back to Solitude without a single confrontation. A successful escort mission accomplished.

As Selina approached their headquarters, the fleet having broken up shortly after they'd reached high security space in Solitude, it gave her a moment to reflect on the event. Granted pretty much nothing had happened and she hadn't gotten to fire off even a single volley, which did sadden her a bit, it was good either way to see yet another successful op by her corp and one that made her proud of the pilots she flew with. And she could certainly say she looked forward to flying with them more and more in the near future.