He was almost back to his ship when he remembered that his comm was still off. A quick tap brought it to screaming life. It jangled and beeped and chirped and made sounds he had not even an onomatopoeiadic word for. Messages, alerts, missed contacts, reminders all vied for his attention. He stopped and opened the ‘urgent’ tagged messages first. Some were, some weren’t. Two absolutely were. One was a reminder from the CSM election board inquiring if he would be running again. He sighed, “I am a stubborn fool.” and replied that he would and tagged the appropriate documents to initate the process.
The second was more of a surprise, it was from Ms Dom and she was asking if they could meet, here in the station. This station. He tapped the details button and saw that the message had been sent from this system. “A bit far off of her beat” He mused as he started to reply to the message.
“Don’t bother, I am right here.”
Mike jumped and spun, stumbling to one side. “Sweet mother, you could kill a man, sneaking up like that.”
Ms Dom smiled wickedly. “I have.” Then a frown flashed across her face. “Is there someplace we can talk? I fel like we are being watched, here.”
Mike looked about slowly and grinned. “We are, and I cannot invite you into my ship, because of that.”
She followed his gaze and noted the hanger bay techs and several loading crews all seemed to be keeping an eye on Mike and herself. “You have a lot of folks watching out for you. I could not get anybody to tell me where you were and after I started asking I found this to be a very . . . unfriendly place.”
Mike chuckled softly. “It is not me that they are watching out for. And THAT is the reason we best not be giving them anything to gossip about. Improprieties at this point could get me very very dead.”
She looked at him askance. “So how do we talk?”
“In public, and carefully. The good news is that this is a friendly base to me and what we talk about will not easily go beyond this station. What is it you need to talk about?”
She tensed for a moment, disliking the public aspect, having been secretive for so long. “I need to discuss a ship and a possible job I need help with.”
“Is that all?” Mike looked about. “Hey, Ev. Mind if I use your station?”
“No problem mon, just no be downloading dem pictures again.” A dreadlocked supervisor yelled across the hanger from where he was overseeing a refit on a Drake.
Mike grinned and waved as he lead her to a very powerful workstation. Powewring it up he looked to her and asked. ‘What ship?”
Instead of answering she slotted a chip into the reader and the image grew before them. “I am told it is called a Scorpion.”
“No, Free, it is actually called a Navy Issue Scorpion.” Mike spoke softly as he looked at the ship rotating before him. “Rumor has it they are all going in for a major refit soon. Right now it is ugly enough to be almost pretty.”
“Ah yes, they did have Navy designation on it, but I merely assumed that was because of the former owners. The question I want answered is . . .can you fly it?”
Mike tapped a few controls and a green light lit above the ship. “Yes, though I am very unlikely to ever get the chance, those things are way out of my league.”
“Perhaps not. I heard you turned down a very high profile mission with the Amarr, recently. Why?”
“I have enough funding to be choosy about what I do and recapturing people to return them to slavery has never been . . .wait. How did YOU hear about that?”
She leaned back and looked him in the eye. “Whether you like it or not, you have associated yourself with us, even if you don’t know who we are. I do not have many associates that I cannot keep an eye on the few still around.”
“Friend.” Mike corrected. “Not ‘associate’.”
Her face went slack for a moment. “I have even fewer of those. Regardless, the slave you refused to recapture managed to elude the rest of the chase and information he was carrying lead us to this ship. It is to be used as a bribe for some high level Caldari corporations to run illegal slaving mining operations and bypass the union oversight. We want to stop the bribe and blacken their eye in a very public way.”
Mike looked up at the image of the Scorpion and sighed. “So you want me to steal you a ship?”
“Yes but that is just the first phase of the operation. I am still trying to find a pilot for the second part. We will need someone who can fly a fast small vessel and is willing to take a risk.”
Mike grinned. “Leave that part to me . . . now what is the scheme you have?”
They spent the next hour talking, Mike called Ev over for the later part of ther conversation and made a few calls, leaving a message for Mar. At one point Free leaned over to point out something on the comm and her hair parted to show a red hourglass tattooed on the back of her neck. Mike started laughing and couldn’t stop for a good five minutes. In time her idea grew and was modified until all agreed it was stupid, dangerous, and probably the only chance they would have.
I don’t know about you but I wish some missions allowed for more imagination, a chance to show tactical decisions.
Please, do not tell me pvp is where that skill comes out to play as a lot of what I see is ‘who has the bigger blob’ or ‘lags the least’.
This is why i watch the Alliance tournaments. Even if I cannot go in them I apprciate the different level of game play when all have the same starting rules and points.
Kinda takes me back to Warhammer tabletop . . . but I digress.
and yes, I have tossed my hat into the ring for ther CSM.
There are going to be a LOT of good candidates out there. I recommend that you read the platforms when they are published and dammit ASK QUESTIONS.