Report from OPSRD0113
“Afternoon Khal, you in the area?” Jon opened the coalition’s private communications channel to find Khal Evingod already connected. Khal was a good pilot, and part of the Indecent Exposure Alliance, the group that the coalition had been fighting daily in Enden and Erstet only 6 months earlier. He was also the guy that landed the initial tackle on the Charon a couple of weeks ago, and knew his way around the block.
“Hey Jon. Yeah, I’m just in Enden. There is Drake in here somewhere, and a Widow as well. They appear to be at a POS sadly”
Jon perked up at the news of a Widow in Enden, and the news that it appeared to be at a POS only increased his interest. Who was this pilot, and which POS were they using? Jon quickly called up the hanger to make sure the Cheetah was prepared and quickly jogged over to Leeroy’s office to let him know that he was going to go out for a quick spin. “Just going solo, all I need to run is the covert cloak and that’s something that I can easily do.”
“Roger Jon. Oh, and we still haven’t taken the Cynabal out for a test. Do you want me to make sure it’s all prepared and crewed for when you get back in?”
“We haven’t done that yet have we?” Jon was perplexed at how he had forgotten that vital chore. “Oh, that’s right. I went to Amarr to test out those Bellicose fits. Yeah, get a crew ready to take it for a test, I shouldn’t be too long with the Cheetah.”
Making his way to the ship hanger, Jon got an update from the hanger crew, informing him that the Cheetah was ready to undock. Upon reaching the Cheetah Jon quickly boarded it and undocked from the station. Turning hard to the right as soon as he undocked, warp was initiated to the Enden gate and the covert cloak engaged to make sure it was working properly. After a quick warp the Cheetah landed at the gate and jumped into Enden. Information provided by Khal gave a rough idea of which moon the Widow and Drake were at, and within a short period of time Jon was sitting off their POS cloaked, looking down upon both ships safely in the middle of the protective forcefield.
“I’m going to check Erstet out Jon, let me know if anything happens with those two.” Khal’s Orthrus disappeared off D-scan as he warped off to the gate.
“Certainly. It doesn’t look like they’re interested in doing much, at least not with me in system with them. How’s Erstet looking?” Jon finished noting down the features of the new POS and prepared to head back to Wirdalen to pick up the Cynabal. “Oh, hold that. We just got two new pilots in system, I don’t recognise them either. I’ll see if I can find out what they’re flying.” Within a short period of time an Orca and Procurer appeared on D-scan, and their location narrowed to one of the asteroid belts in the centre of the system. “Khal, I have an Orca and Procurer in Enden. They are in the belt, this is not a joke. I am going to reship to my Cynabal and attempt to tackle the Orca, you able to back me up?”
“You’re kidding right? Umm, sure, what do you want me to bring?”
“Whatever you’re comfortable in. We don’t know if these guys are related to the Widow and Drake, so we may have a fight on our hands. My Cynabal needs a test, and this seems like a good way to do that.”
“I’ll bring my Orthrus then, good range control if things turn bad. Erstet is empty, I’ll get on the Enden gate in Nein.”
“Sounds good. I’ll see if I can rustle up another pilot or two, I believe Pick is close by.” Hitting up some less-used communication channels, Jon managed to get hold of Pick, and brief him quickly on the situation. ‘Orca’, ‘Enden’ and ‘belt’ seem to be magic words, and within a short time there was a Vagabond joining Khal’s Orthrus on the gate. “I’m jumping into Enden and warping to the belt guys, I will let you know when I have tackle.” As soon as the jump between systems finished, Jon activated warp to the belt that the Orca was last seen in, and prepared for a potential fight.
“All crew, we are going after a high-value target, so I want no mistakes. Gunnery, make sure we have Hail loaded, we’re going in hard and close. Navigation, keep an eye on short-range D-scan. If that Drake or Widow start heading our way I want to know. E-war crew, get that long point heated, we may need the extra range. We are going to be initiating bumping on the enemy vessel until our friends arrive on field, as the Orca may have warp-core stabs fit, and I don’t want this target escaping.” As the Cynabal came out of warp the Orca appeared in front of them, sitting still while the Procurer mined away next to it.
“We have engaged the Orca, jump jump jump guys!” Jon shouted over comms for Khal and Pick to join him, and local jumped by two as they entered Enden. In a few short seconds the Orthrus and Vagabond were on grid with Jon and the Orca, with the Procurer escaping off grid just before they arrived. Reports came in quickly from Khal and Pick that they had engaged the Orca themselves, and the shields and armour disappeared rapidly. Upon hitting the structure of the Orca the damage slowed down noticeably. “Oh, we have a hull tanked Orca guys. Keep a look out on D-scan for the Widow coming to play.”
The Orca’s structure was slowly ground down, with no movement from the Widow pilot to intervene. As the last scraps of structure were torn apart from the barrage of fire coming from drones, missiles and autocannons, the Orca exploded in a massive explosion. Escape pods were seen ejecting as the once massive ship twisted into a mess of melted metal, and the pilot’s escape pod warped off to safety.
“Enemy ship down, good job guys.” Jon congratulated Pick and Khal, and thanked them for their quick and professional response to the unexpected appearance of the Orca. “Sadly it didn’t drop anything nice, this guy didn’t even have a T2 shield buffer. No wonder he melted quickly, but it’s not like T2 would have saved him.”
“What’s the plan now Jon?” Leeroy came up with a grin on his face “Also, I think the Cynabal passed its test with flying colours.”
“Indeed it did, passed the test perfectly. Can’t beat an Angel Cartel ship for build quality, they use a bit more than the duct-tape and rust that proper Minmatar ships seem to use. That being said, Pick’s Vagabond does look nice, I might have to get one myself and give it a spin. As for the plan now, take us back to Wirdalen. The Mordu’s Legion appear to have launched an attack on a Gurista’s research facility in Enden, and I feel like taking the Machariel for a spin.”
It was certainly an unexpected sight to see on my D-scan. Apparently they thought that because they posed no threat I would leave them alone. Sure, an Orca doesn’t scream out ‘threat’ to me. However, it does scream ‘large and shiny’, and that’s enough to make me try to kill anything. Why they used an Orca and a Procurer instead of two Procurers I’ll never know. A lot cheaper, and a better overall yield if you’re using just two ships.
Orca killmail: https://zkillboard.com/kill/47108252/