Everyone has seen them, even for those who are not even looking for them. But rest assured they are looking for you, maybe not at this very moment, but one day they will have an eye out for you. I of course speak of gate observers. Not quite as obvious, nor quite as dangerous at the moment of contact, but what may seem like an idle ship may actually be sizing you up for the kill.

I had been traveling through Empire space for a while now. I could see that a few people may consider a jumpgate a fairly safe spot due to the local sentry guns, and CONCORD patrolling the area. However I could not fathom that someone would use a gate as a layover point. At the same time this also piqued my interest. I was passing through more and more gates with small, or even larger combat capable craft sitting idle.

There were no gate ques, they were simply admiring the view perhaps? The overview displayed one of the ships having a slightly lower security status. I contemplated for a moment if I should target the ship to see what kind of reaction I would get. Suddenly it hit me, a brief moment of panic and adrenaline washed over my consciousness.

As if in an instant I felt as if a million eyes were upon me. I realized that the customs officials used passive scanners to target and scan passing ships to check for contraband. That same captain was scanning ships for potential targets, not for himself but to relay the information to a gang out in deadspace. I suppose I could say I felt violated by this invasion of privacy, but I wasn’t. I was Envious.

Captains were choosing to sit in a major traffic gateway and passively scan the approaching ships. Each vessel passing by not even knowing that someone was analyzing their combat load out as well as downloading their cargo manifest. No one was there to interfere, there was nothing that was being done. I wanted in on this.

I had no malintent with the information I was about to gather, so I placed an order for a Crucifier class frigate and all the scanning equipment I would need. I ordered it from Dodixie as it was a busy system where I could have the pick of a large variety of passing ships.

My scans relieved some ships that were configured as almost a joke, and others configured for salvage and recon. Others almost seemed like they were there to bait and lure other explorers to their doom. At this point I almost felt as if I should have stayed away from this temptation. However, at that moment, I saw an Abaddon. Shimmering gold, cutting through space like the battle axe of a god.

A tool powerful enough to stare back at the stars and simply say, “Die… die… die…”

I couldn’t help myself. I engaged the passive targeting system on my tiny ship and locked the battleship. It only took a brief second to lock on while the ship named “Winds of Fate” moved effortlessly through the black. The tactical readout was complete. I think I died a little inside when I went over the complete overview. This was no military ship, it was privately owned by another captain or corporation. The loadout was expensive and impressive. I didn’t have to look at my own wallet to know how far I was outmatched here.

+[ Winds of Fate Tactical Loadout ]+

The scanner blinked off as the Abaddon engaged its warp engines and soared passed my tiny ship. How does someone afford to fit a ship so large with such equipment? This is a place I need to get to. In order to get there, I was going to need more training, more money, and more exposure. I need to get out of Empire Space.


~ by sgavenger on September 9, 2008.

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