Return to New Eden

August 4, 2009

OOC note: (I know I said I was shutting things down for this account and for this game, but in the end, I can’t let one bad instance of customer service drive me away from a game that’s so excellent.  So, back to the game, back to the blog.)

>>>>Personal Log:  I thought I was done being’ a capsuleer, I thought I was done playing the markets and hauling crap around for Mr. D.  He had put me on ice, had me cooking my heels on the homeworld.

I was actually on a pleasure trip to Illinfrik when the call came.  Mr. D.’s face surprised me when he appeared on screen and told me it was time to get  back to work.  He then proceeded to give me one of the crappiest jobs I’d ever been given.  He told me to get everything in the region, and bring it to base.  And I was to get him a ships accounting while I was at it.

The crew seemed surprised to see me and took a little longer than normal warming up the Iteron Five, that I had spent so much time in.  They were as surprised as I at me going out.  I thought we had been in talks to turn the ship into a trade museum, or a classroom for orphans.

Not to be today, I thought to myself as I finally hauled the last of the stray matter back to Frarn, ran it through a quick sorting algorithm, and sent most of it to be consigned to the furnace.  Nearly 5,000 cubic meters of trade goods, including a giant secure container holding only Mr. D’s Quafe, a half dozen ships, and a giant can of salvage she had forgotten about sloshed about in the giant Industrial’s cargo hold.<<<<

She finished up  her  tabulations:  Just over 50 M in cash, 300-400M in Datacores depending on how fast they liquidated, Three Imicus class Frigates, A Thorax, Three Iteron class Industrials (two on the market) and a Helios were the ships she had available.

She tabbed up Mr. D.’s  ship-list and copied it over to the assets list:  Four Stabbers, eight Rifters, A Scimitar, Two Mammoths, a Hurricane and a Sleipner.  Funny, no battleships of any kind.  And she knew she had bought him a Maelstrom.  And hold on a second, she had bought those stabbers months ago, and knew Mr. D. hadn’t been flying them at all.  The cargo manifests all said that only one was fitted at the moment.

She furrowed her brow and did some data digging, contacting Mr. D’s personal data avatar and making him divulge the recent asset allocations.  Apparently Mr. D. has been shuffling ships off to a new recruit.

Her slender fingers worked the datapad, summoning up everything she could muster on the mystery pilot.

She got a name, and a photo, and very little personal data.  Someone named Asheyna, a little Minmatar bitch sinking her claws into her boss!  Aziza hated her instantly. Something about her confidence, the fact that she wasn’t even consulted with a gear list, something was going on.  She thought it just might be an aging warlord’s play at keeping young.

She dug deeper.  By the time her alarm chirped to remind her of her imminent meeting with Mr. D, she was prepared carefully, in a fresh ship-suit, scrubbed and shiny with just a hint of lip gloss, aiming for professional but available, she gathered up her data-pad, her carry bag, and her holstered blaster pistol, grateful that the artificial gravity seemed to be holding.  She headed for Deck 6.9, Mr. D’s favorite drinking spot in Frarn.

She nearly froze in the doorway as she entered.  That skinny bitch Asheyna was draping herself all over Mr. D and pouring him coffee! Like she owned him or something!  Things went downhill from there.

<<<<<Personal Log:  I’m not ashamed of what I did, but I think next time I’ll snipe the bitch from orbit.  Suffice to say that the meeting ended with the data pad thrown at Mr. D’s head, him bemused, Asheyna smirking like she won something at a street fair, and a near bloodbath.  That Matari bitch better watch her hands around Mr. D, or I’ll cut them off and stuff them down her stupid, skinny whore throat.>>>>

Things didn’t look all that great between her and her employer by the end of that meeting, so Aziza headed down t her hanger.  She had them kit out the Helios quickly and jumped in, heading out in the inky blackness of space.  Her com panel beeped a recorded message from Mr. D.  She thought about watching it but decided she just didn’t care for now.  For now, she’d wrap herself in a field of stars like a blanket, and listen to their music.  Tomorrow would be soon enough for more orders, if she could bring herself to go back to work after such public humiliation.

Eventually, she thought it would be an apology from Mr. D about the way he had acted, or rather, not acted when the skanky whore was draping herself all over him.  She thumbed open the message.  Nothing personal, just a one line order:  Proceed from Frarn to Osamuni with as much raw ore as possible, and bring the  blueprints can.  –D.

She stared at it for a long while before turning the Helios back to the station, calling in orders for the Iteron V to be loaded to the gills.  If she couldn’t dazzle him with her personality, or lure him with her gentle charms, maybe he’d be swayed by her efficient service.

She sat there a long time before undocking, the realization dawning on her that she was totally and 100% in love with her employer.  “Awkward and nothing to be done about it,” she thought to herself, and she wiped away a few tears, as she began her pre-flight checklist.

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Prizes will be awarded…

February 7, 2009

In the interests of having a clean and mostly entertaining blog, I’ve decided to reward Eve players who find typos.  The first person to spot a tpyo in my blog and comment here about it needing a correction will win 1M isk.  This is an open, standing offer for all my posts.  I hope to grow the prize money eventually. As I use a spellcheck, you can be sure I left it in on purpose.

Alert in Atlar!

February 7, 2009

It starts as a pretty typical day.  Aziza is ordered by her employer to relocate to Gelfiven for a time, as his work is transferring  from predominantly for the Brutor Tribe to that of the Minmatar Republic Fleet.  Specifically they are working for logistical services, an area Aziza considers herserlf a bit of a specialist in.

Her employer [redacted], comes across the channel with a burst of static:  “Mayday!  Mayday, I am under attack by a Broadsword in Atlar while enganging Ammarran national forces.  Any ships in the area, please respond.”  This brings a lump to Aziza’s throat.  Mr. D was still flying his brand new Sleipnir.  It still had the ‘new ship smell’.  Any insurance payout for a command ship is pitiful compared to the chance for gain.

“Chebri here, I’m on my way in my Drake.”  One of Colonial Fleet Services officers, that fine collection of individuals who worked together when availible.  “Minz here, should I bring the Brutix? It’s not fitted!”  Her normally cool alto voice cracked with fear and excitement. “Negative Minz…” came back the voice of her employer.   “They’re bringing friends to this party.  He’s got a buddy in a Raven.  You’d be so much toast out here. ”

She replies, “I can help!”

He barks “Not NOW! The Raven’s opening fire….”  Tense seconds pass in silence while her employer deals with weapons and shields systems.  “They’re from Twisted, Inc.”

Aziza pales.  Twisted Inc. is a notorious pirate corps full of skilled and deadly pilots.  Her friends ships and pods were on the line.  Chebri’s cheerful and voice comes back online. “I’m warping into system… I’ll be there in moments.” Mr. D says, “Good, hurry, they’ve just got a third buddy on scan in local.  They can’t penetrate my shields though.  When you get here, we target the Raven and see if we can…”  The rest of the sentence was drowned out by the heavy “Foom! Foom” of his auto-cannons.  “That Broadswords gonna be too tough to crack…”

“He’s on my six,” says Chebri.  “Crap, no ECM on this ship.  One ECM mod would turn this fight.  Uh oh, they’re firing on me….  80% shields and falling.”  Aziza’s employer replies “Get out of here… Run, I don’t want you to lose a ship too.”  Chebri’s voice comes back over the comms. “I’m in his bubble already no warping.  Boosting away from you, let’s see if we can split their fire.  If one of us can get away and come back we do it.”

More long seconds ticked off as Aziza tried to remember what all she needed to take with her,  throwing modules around the normally neat  hanger with the speed and ferocity of an angry Wookie.  All too soon before she’s ready, she’s strapping herself in and launching.

Mr. D’s voice comes across the comms. “Switching to the Broadsword, they’re fourty kilometers apart. We could fight him off.”  After a few moments, Chebri says,  “I’m almost out of range for the Raven, shields back to 60% and climbing.” Mr. D’s only reply was “Switching drones and guns to the Broadsword.  We’re not gonna get him, you know… No scrammer or jammer.  Maybe we can get him to rabbit, and then both get out.”  “Roger that,” is Chebri’s reply.

Aziza’s ship jets toward the Gelfiven-Atlar gate and drops out of warp.  She is shaking, her teeth chattering with fear as she  thumbs the comms. “Minz in position to jump in…” comes out of the comms and she punches the button, the jump gate throwing her light years in instants.

Unfortunately as her systems begin to online again and  register her surroundings, the comms crackle again, Chebri saying “Broad’s running.”  Her employer replies “Scram then, grab and ECM and get back! Maybe we can still take them!  Aziza, DO NOT JUMP!”

“Too late bossman, I’m on my way to you.”

“Aziza, stay at the accelerator gate, that Raven would light you up! Hurry up Chebs, I’m worried about them coming back… Crap, the broadsword is back… Long way off though.”

Chebri’s voice comes over the comms. “We’re in a bad way, I don’t have the mods I need, gonna have to shop around.”

Aziza’s ship aligns and warps toward her fleet mate.  No sense getting caught hanging out by a gate in low-sec space.  As she reaches the acceleration gate so common around deadspace areas, she checks her fittings.  A warp scrambler, an afterburner and a webber.  No weapons other than the drones in the bay unfortunately.

Her employer’s voice growls over the comms, “Everyone stay where you are, the broadsword isn’t gonna catch me in his warp bubble, he’s 42km out… I’ll wait until he’s about 32km from activation and then bug out. If you’re here by then great. Aziza. Do. Not. Warp. To. Me, until Chebri runs past you.  You’re too much of a liability in a fight.”  Aziza gulps, unsure of the range of the Warp Disruption Field generator that most Broadswords sported.  Her only consolation was Mr. D was a fully qualified Broadsword pilot himself and probably *did* know.

Aziza ponders her employers words and furrows her brow at that, stung by the simple truth.  She was *not* a combat pilot.  Her gut was in knots and she hadn’t even *seen* an enemy ship.   Chebri’s voice comes back online. “You might have to run… I’m not ready yet.”  Her employer curses softly, and snarls, “I’m warping out. I’m in warp… They got your drones Cheb.”

Chebri’s musical laughter tinkled over the comms. “I have plenty.  Where’s Aziza.”

Aziza is just clutching the arms of her chair, too worried to move, almost too worried to breath.  She aligned for the nearest space station, not even caring who owns it or whether or not it could already be a trap.  With an expelled breath of relief she her warp engines engage and she jets away from her first near combat experience.  She realizes that there’s a very sour taste in the back of her mouth as she was prepared to just chuck her lunch into the pod.  Not good.  Greenly, she thumbs the comms channel open and says, “I’m on my way to the station, just get out… My ship’s insured… Get out… get out…”  ”

Her employer came over the comms. “That’s only the second time in my career that I’ve been outnumbered and lived and it was only thanks you both. Thank you Chebri, thank you Aziza…  Let’s get our intel to the Republic Fleet, perhaps they can arrange for a strike force to go and deal with them.  But I doubt it.  They’ll be there again.”

Aziza ponders the outcome,  a failed mission and frustration all around, but no lost ships, and no lost pods, all in all, a victory for Colonial Fleet Services and a draw for Twisted, Inc.

No love for Logic Bombs…

February 4, 2009

Aziza Minz was dead asleep when the call came. She snorts awake at the shrill sound, and gasps for breath. She sits upright, covered in a light sheen of sweat, her tank top clinging to her sticky form.

<<incoming transmission, priority channel [redacted] calling from Rens.>>

“Aziza”. It was Mr. D. He looked pale and clammy, kinda like a clone fresh from the vat.

“We lost the Sleipner. I was engaged in a pitched battle with Caldari naval forces in Rens. Rens of all places. They were trying to get a supply depot set up. I had eliminated all but two final Battleships when one of the ships tried to hail me.

It must have activated the logic bomb because the next thing I know, my controls totally lock, everything, manual overrides, the backups, the jury rigging. I think the central processor melted trying to deal with the logic bomb, and the next thing you know, I’m in my emergency pod heading for the Sisters Base as fast as I can go.

I know we’ve been hit hard for expenses this month… give me the bad news, what sort of ship can I afford? Or am I refitting the hurricane for battle?”

Aziza just blinks and assimilates knowledge. She glances at the clock. 23:15. She had been asleep for a total of forty minutes. No wonder the inside of her head felt like fuzzy oatmeal.

“Uh… Give me a second…” Her markets toolbar sprang to life. “We’ve got just over 248M in cash. Other assets could take a bit to value.”

Her employer cursed. “Well, not exactly what I had in mind for that money. I was planning on extending your pilot’s license with that cash.”

Aziza gives her employer a lopsided grin. At least he was thinking of her. “That’s not practical sir. You’re going to need to refit A.S.A.P. Will 150M do, sir?”

Her employer considers and nods. “Will do. Then get some rack time, I’ll be calling you in a few hours with more work. [Redacted] Out.”

Aziza Minz transferred the cash and then opened a new log on her terminal. “Open Ongoing Investigation of loss of Sleipner due to a logic bomb…” She rubs her eyes and glances over at her nightstand table. She arches a brow, looking at the tail end of the Crash. She knew it wasn’t a good idea, but she pauses the log and heads over to the nightstand. Time to call a guy who knew a guy…

I just got a note from CrazyKinux that reads:

Hey there!

Welcome to the EVE blogging community!

I added your blog to my EVE Player Blogroll. You’ll also be featured in both the next EVE Speedlinking post, as well as the next Micro Warp Cast podcast.

I’d appreciate if you made a post about it and/or added those links to your blogroll!

Thank you so very much for inclusion CrazyKinux.  You should also check out the list kept at  http://www.crazykinux.com/2008/06/eve-online-blog-pack.html.  I hope to keep Aziza’s tale going as  long as I’m still enjoying Eve.

<<Aziza Minz Personal Log>>

Profit  and.. orand Loss.

You don’t go looking for losses in the market, not usually, they sneak up on you, and you find yourself over extended, overbought, outgunned or just plain out-maneuvered.

It’s been a busy couple of days in the Big Daddy as I’ve been thinking of the new battle-cruiser, maneuvering with tritanium prices, raising my buy orders prices, waiting for the higher buyers to  finish their orders, shaving a few  hundredth’s of an isk on millions of trit.

Perhaps this is a market bubble that is about to collapse.  I don’t expect trit prices to plummet all that much, but it seems that we’ve hit a plateau for now in Heimatar with top buyers paying 3.84 isk/unit, with low sellers close to 3.90, but the average a lot closer to 4.0 than that, with large volumes.

<<Personal Log – Paused.  Incoming priority communication>>

Aziza’s com window flashed open with a single red flash around Mr. D’s name, the word ‘priority’ flashing in electric blue. Aziza opens her comm channel.  “Minz here, go ahead.”

Her employer’s swarthy face materializes before her in three dimensions.  A vein on his neck pulses hotly.  Aziza felt herself responding viscerally to his highly emotional state.

“How much money do we have?”  This was never a good question coming from Mr. D. He either has enough or needs a haulerload.

“What happened?” Aziza probes cautiously.

“Lost the Claymore to Concord… and caused a buddy to lose a Guardian to boot.” He sighs audibly, clearly seething  under the skin.

“Oh, crap, how did that happen?”

“Let’s just say that I’ll never mistake a Target Annex for a Targeting Computer again, and my criminal warnings notification has been reset to ‘on’…  The guardian was shield boosting me when I opened up on some Angels, and the next thing you know, Three Concord battleships are there, locking me down and pulverizing the claymore in seconds.”

Aziza bit her lip, uncertain as to what, if anything to say.

“It means,” he says, “That I tried to sensor boost the angel I was firing upon, and that’s a big no-no in the Concord Regulation Book.  I can even imagine why it’s a regulation.  Wish that Concord had a little more discretion, but we wouldn’t want anyone going around boosting pirates to kill young pilots, would we?”

Minz shook her head.  Her employer just looked pensive for a minute.  Aziza supplies,”Well, we’ve got about 200 Million in cash right now, and we could raise another 50 million in escrow if it came to that.”

“Oh! Good!  Thank god.  Okay,  I need you to take sixty million, buy this guy a Guardian and deliver it to his home system.”

Yarebap, she entered into the navcomp as he spoke, her eyes activating another screen to bring up the prices of Guardians.  “Deliver it there and set up a contract for Gorrack.”

28 jumps.  Her boss noticed her eyebrow arch and commented, “Yeah 28 jumps.  When you’re done, I *order* you to take some R&R for 24 before coming back.  You’ve been doing great lately and I just wanted to thank you.  I’ll handle things on this end with regards to the salvage, and just stockpile things until you get back.”

“Understood,” said Aziza, her cool alto striving for a soothing tone.  “But boss, didn’t he get an insurance payout like you? Crappy for an advanced ship like that, but yours was a huge loss.  Is it in our best interests to buy this guy a new ship?”

Mr. D. paused for a moment and thought about it then cleared his throat, a lot of his angry tension dissipating. “Let this be a lesson for everyone involved.  Aziza, You pay for your mistakes, one way or another.

I’d rather pay with my wallet and time for that mistake, learn and move on and not repeate it rather than live with the regret that one of my actions caused a gangmate of mine to lose his ship.   You have your orders, move out.  Oh, and transfer that 140 million that’s left to my account, I’m going to go buy myself a sleipner.  I was wondering what the difference was and now I  have a reason to find out.  [redacted] out.”

Aziza just grins and nods throwing up a prayer to Infi, the the great spirit in gratitude for having a boss with character.  “Minz over and out.”  She switches comm channels “This is Minz, get Big Blue warmed up and make sure you take out those cargo containers and stow them on B-deck while we’re gone, gonna need that space for a logistics cruiser.”  She closes comms and sets her navicomp to dock up for switching ships.

<<Personal Log – Cont.>>

Took a 200M isk loss today, but it gained me the respect of my boss and mentor, and was a great litmus test of his character.  Lots to do on the horizen and what to do with my R&R?

<<Close log>>

2009 01.23

17:41 Aziza logged on from a late dinner break to check for messages.  Her inbox had a few missives from Colonial Fleet Services. Apparently something about their war chest and training for combat needs.  A request for materials and minerals accompanied it.  Then there was the ominous message from Mr. D. “Minz, go  buy Battle-cruisers skill book, slot  it immediately. Check the escrow account for purchase of new ship upon learning new skill. Good work in the last couple of days…. D.”

A quick search of the markets showed that the skill book was nearby and a Brutix was the cheapest battlecruiser within 10 jumps.  She started by swinging by the Pator Tech School in good old badly named Illinfrick.  She’d never been ill or fricked there or badly fricked in any event.  She slotted the skill, set the autopilot and decided it was as good a time as any for a nap.

She woke up from nap at 18:30, in the Hurjafren system. From her personal log:  “In my haste to get going, I had failed to plan adequately and was now stuck in a station with two ships. Only one thing to do for it… Pack up Grasshoppah and put him in storage until I could swing around with Big Blue…”

She pulled into dock with 25 minutes left before she  was cleared to pilot the Brutix, and  spent that time backing up Grasshoppa’s personality to an AI button, telling the perky lil’ A.I. he was gonna take a long nap.

At 8:53 her alarm goes off, giving her three whole minutes to wake up, grab a bulb of coffee with artificial dairy flavors, hazelnut and some cinnamon. “Ahhhh…. Another fine Quafe product. She heads down to Hanger 361F at the Imperial Armaments Factory, checked the market que for any quick bargains and prepared to initiate skill change over, as he had so many times before.

She was just going to switch back to mastering Gallente Frigates, she decided. Other priorities would become clear, but until then, her survey specialist track was laid out before her.

18:58… Skill training completed. Her pilot’s GalNet registry automatically updated her status as ‘qualified’ Battle-cruiser pilot. Most pros knew that ‘qualified’ was just a fancy way of saying ‘wet behind the ears for this set of gears’, but that never changed the little thrill Aziza got from trying out new ships.

19:36 “Get your ass back to Frarn young lady, stop gallivanting around with your shiny new ship. What’d ja name her?” barked Mr. D, over the Comnet.  Aziza had completely lost track of time, floating in space in her new ‘shipsuit’ as she thought of them from time to time.  This was a new Brutix, just off the factory floor and she had spent the time familiarizing herself both with the ship and its systems.

She though to herself “Oops, I had spent so much time in the pod, familiarizing myself with the feel of the new ship that I had forgotten to turn on the autopilot…   His name is Big Daddy Tuna.” is what she says.  “Dock my pay” is her thought but it doesn’t escape her lips, this time.  Mr. D’s only comment. “I still think it’s bad luck to name your ships after guys, but I like the name.”  Aziza’s grin causes the photo receptors in her dashboard take it down a notch to prevent flares in her image.  Mr. D. continues, “Got a large number of drone wrecks here for you to take care of, ASAP, Minz… Battle-cruisers don’t grow on trees.”

Aziza’s replies “On my way, boss, eta 15 minutes.”  It was only three jumps but  better to set meetable expectations and beat them than to show him how accurate she could be.  She sets the nav comp and engages the warp drive.

By 19:46, Aziza hops back into Frarn, beginning her search for Mr. D.   She gets a lock on his fleet transponder and orders the  perform a double barrel roll aligning for warp.  As her new  ship literally jumps at her command.  Within minutes she and Big Tuna, as she affectionately thinks of him are sucking nearby space dry of wrecks and loot, all in the name of the Brutor Tribe.

After a few hours of salvaging, Aziza returns back to Frarn, her new salvaging battle-cruiser filled to the brim with modules and spaceship wreckage.  Most of the salvage goes to nearby dealers, the modules get gone through for good or  ‘like-new’ to be added to the market and the rest are bound for the foundry, where Mr. D will melt it all down, and either consign the materials for construction or sale (which is Aziza’s preference).

Before closing down shop and ship for the night however, she takes an hour to add some of her more valuable scrap to the market.   She grinned to herself.  Mr. D. always said she could do whatever she wanted to with salvage in terms of sales.  By her calculations, her efforts in that one hour would yield more than the cost of her skill and her new ship.
If only her boss would notice the lengths to.  Maybe someday.