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Change of Plans

"We're not going to wait for contact with the locator agent", the Fleet Commander(FC) shouted over the Fleet comms link. Our 9 ship squad was poised in close formation less than 2500m away from the Stargate, that leads to a system that a few war target pilots were reported to have been in; however, our scout has confirmed the contrary. "Bandit Actual, Bandit Actual, this is Birds Nest", came over the comms from headquarters(HQ), "Birds Nest this is Bandit Actual send it", the FC responded. The comms officer at HQ replied, "Bandit Actual we have confirmed 6 reds(enemy pilots) in system, I say again we have confirmed there are 6 reds in system, how copy", "Solid copy Birds Nest, 6 reds in system" barked the FC. "Bandit Actual, what is your current position", the comms officer at HQ asked, "we're currently 10 jumps out from base, Birds Nest", replied the FC. "Roger that Bandit Actual, return to Base and engage red pilots on contact, how copy", asked the comms officer, "Solid copy Birds Nest, Bandit Actual return to Base, Bandit Actual out".

The FC addressed the fleet on Fleet comms and ordered everyone to set destination to Base and align to the next Stargate. The nine-ship squad turned in unison toward the Stargate and headed in its direction. The search for the war targets was put on hold as we all began downloading the reports of what ships the red pilots are in, and where in the system they were last spotted. At the 4 jumps out mark the FC got word from HQ that the red pilots have moved out of the system. "Change of plans gents, looks like HQ wants a blockade at the empire gate(a Stargate in the HQ system that links high-sec to low-sec, our base being on the low-sec side), once in system get re-fitted or change ships if needed, for a blockade setup and form up at the empire gate in 10 mins, how copy", the FC barked over Fleet comms, all of the squad members responded in order confirming their acknowledgment, "Bandit Actual, this is Bandit Five, solid copy", was my response.

When we were 1 jump out from base I ordered my comms officer to make contact with the Dock Officer at HQ. "Sir I have the Dock Officer on link", my Comms Officer informed me, "good, tell him to prep the Caracal Navy Issue(A-1) for a blockade with max damage output", I ordered. After jumping into the HQ system the Intel Officer reported, "zero reds in system sir". "Align to dock, warp when ready", I ordered as my Blackbird(E-4) cruiser came out of jump cloak and aligned to the HQ station. While the ship was moving through the warp corridor towards the HQ, I gave the crew their disembark and re-embark orders and then checked the last reports from HQ on the activities in local the past thirty minutes. The reports were reasonably mild, a few rats got splashed and a dullwatt(idiot) miner got popped in an ice field. This dullwatt somehow did enough research to find an ice field one jump out of high sec, but doesn't do the extra clicks to find out that it is home to a few pirate corps.........dullwatt.

At the HQ the ship change went smoothly, the crew were moving into their stations aboard the A-1 quickly and the officers were reporting 100% systems and stations readiness. "Sir we are ready to undock" the Bridge Officer turned and said to me, "Undock and align to the empire gate", I ordered. Outside the HQ station my corp-mates were testing their resistances and locking speeds on each other’s ships, once assured they can tank damage as long as they plan to, they warped off toward the gate to get into position. When the A-1 came out of warp at the empire gate, the trap was already set by my fellow corp mates and a few blue(friendly pilots of another corp) pilots in BS's, BC's, and Tech 2 cruisers.

"Gate Fire, Gate Fire", exploded over the Fleet comms link, "Ready the launchers", I ordered, "Launchers ready" the Missile Chief barked. Then the overview lit up when the unknown ship came out of jump cloak, "Its a Vagabond" my Intel Officer informed me, "Not blue shoot it, get webs on it fast", the FC shouted over Fleet comms. The sentry guns came alive blasting into my corp-mates who were quick enough to lock and fire first. As soon as my ship's sensors gained lock the missile launchers opened up with a thunderous roar and a bright glow.

The infamous blue hue from a corp mates weber wrapped around the Vagabond as my heavy missiles closed in on it with screaming velocity. The BS's already nullified the Vagabond's shields so my volley of heavy missiles smashed directly into the Vagabond's armor releasing an incredible amount of kinetic energy upon impact. The other ships unleashed a portion of their ordinance payloads into the Vagabond, which commenced its destruction. After the fantastic light display from the large amounts of energy released when the Vagabond erupted disappeared, the dull metallic glare of a pod capsule could be seen. The pilot tried to maneuver her lone pod to align to any object in which she could warp off to relative safety, only to be locked and popped as well. I'd bet that pilot wishes she had a change of plans before she jumped into this system.

Cleared for publication by: Ander