“Never Not Overplan for POCO Defence.”
“Never!” -- Zak III, Greygal
[ Uhm, Greygal? They are in this system. ]
I wouldn't say that that report went almost unrecognized - we were trained better than that! - but it was definitely unexpected.
Usually structure defense events come in two flavors: One, you show up in respectable numbers and get trounced by an opponent with even more respectable number. The other, you show up in respectable numbers, and your opponent doesn’t even bother.
This morning, our lot had been the latter: while we had two or three of the Dark Knights in system when we rolled up in our POCO defense fleet of sixty cruisers and logistics, they didn’t cause any trouble. One had tried to peak his head out of the station, but unfortunately for him, he had done it just when Onslaughtor performed a live-fire test of his weapons systems.
Otherwise, we had been undisturbed - some of our damage dealers even patrolled the local Sansha and Mordus Legion strongholds in between POCO repairs, just to get some entertainment out of this evening.
And now this. Just when we were all about to get out on a roam into the local neighborhoods in our impromptu fleet.
[ Who is where, exactly? ] Greygal, taking command of comms.
Coll took a breath. [ The folks who attacked our POCOs - they are here in Bekirdod, next to Berta - and they are suspect. ] And after a few seconds, an afterthought. [ I took a wrong turn. ]
I could almost see the collective thought form: *So there is where they went!*
Oblivious, our hero logistics continued.
[ There is a cyno here now - and I think they are warping off. … Yess, they are warping… to the Gamis gate. ]
Gamis - that was only two hops from here… Greygal made a snap decision.
[ Everybody - make best speed to the Bekirdod gate in Gamis! Best speed to to Bekirdod gate in Gamis! Set up around the gate and hold. Only shoot when they’re suspect! ]
As my fleet members started warping off, I was left in a pickle - this could end up in a hi-sec fight, which I was unable to participate in (I knew - I had tried!). But maybe … maybe I could swing around and maybe make sure that none of them escapes through the back way? Yes!
It would give me something to do while the rest of our fleet waited to welcome the Dark Knights to hi-sec. And back to hi-sec they came.
One at a time.
And all I could do was listen.
[ One Vexor at the Gamis gate in Bekirdot, coming through to you. Another guy… ]
[Ok, we are landing… We need tackle - preheat your tackle … One scythe is friendly - or maybe not. Ok, tackle on Scythe ]
[ Point Scythe ]
[ Kill it! ]
[ I have several Vexor Navies, several Vexor Navies, a Scythe, coming to you guys. ]
[ Keep shooting! Pick ’em off. If they’re silly enough to come through like this… ]
I tuned out - this would not be my fight. The only contribution I would able to make would be that, yes, Bekirdod was back to neutral.
Ok, there were a number of neutrals in the system - and five carriers. A picture started to emerge.
And I recognized the locals - folks from the 107th. Good folks, just don’t get on the wrong side of their weaponry. So when they started acting skittish, I didn’t mind to defuse the situation.
Archeras Umangiar > Nothing to see here, move along
Druur Monakh > Yep - the folks I was looking for are gone.
Archeras Umangiar > The Vexors?Druur Monakh > Yup, they gave us trouble yesterday. Much fun.
Druur Monakh > Good hunting!
And with that, I left the system. The last of the Dark Knights had already lost their suspect flagging anyway, so seeing that there was nothing else left to do in hi-sec, the fleet regrouped and set out on its new purpose: roam the nearby null sec!
But fate wasn’t quite done with me.
While we were hurtling towards a fateful confrontation with Pandemic Legion, a comms request suddenly demanded my attention.
Hmm - Archeras - the 107th guy whom I have talked to earlier. I acknowledged the request.
[ What did you mean by ‘gave you trouble’? ]
I hesitated - how much to tell him without giving away op-sec or strat-sec?
“The DEKN folks RI’d two of our POCOs, as 'punishment for breaking NRDS rules in Providence’. But they didn’t show up to fight us today about the RI, instead they went to fight you guys.”
I sensed laughter. [ ’Fight’… they ran like chickens! ]
“..and died on the other side of the gate.”
[ Really? You got them? ]
I had only seconds left before we would drop into our engagement with PL, so I sent him the preliminary battle report, and then concentrated at the fight at hand.
Not that it would had made any difference: within seconds, my cruiser became primary for our hostiles, and I had my hands full just saving my pod.
But as my pod sped to temporary safety, Archeras finally spoke up again.
[ I love you folks! ]