Jim Bridger here. By popular demand of the corp minions, Marlenus signed Ironfleet Towing And Salvage up for factional warfare, on the side of the Caldari (my CEO he may be, but he’s still a fascist bastard and slaver-lover, what can ya do?)

He’s not much inclined to play with the new FW stuff — not enough rewards, and he does too much hauling into all four empires to want perma faction loss — but he was willing, at least temporarily, to put the corp on a war footing and let slip the dogs of war (woof). He was even kind enough to stock the Ironfleet hangars with a bottomless pile of frigates and a round half-dozen Thrashers for me. There must be twenty sets of destroyer guns in cheap second-best-named flavors, and they’d all melt down trying to fire the enormous cans full of ammo he’s stockpiled. Turns out the Old Man is a paranoid sumbitch who doesn’t believe in shopping or hauling when there’s a war on, y’know? So, war material we got.

I myself have a ton of destroyer skills, but damn little actual PvP experience. So faction warfare seems like a nice cheap way to get some.

Logged in this morning, found myself at the edge of the war zone, checked my militia office, set my destination for a contested system. Off I went.

The militia chat was full of noise about a huge furball in Tama, but I was on the wrong side, with an enemy gate camp between me and the main fleet. So I went to this other contested system, or tried to.

Along the way, I found a contested system (one of ours) that had nobody in it but me, so I went to the beacon and captured it for the Caldari. Got some militia faction for my boring ten minutes of orbiting, and the system stopped being contested.

Found a nice wrecked Ferox (one of ours) with several thousand Tech II heavy missiles in it, and a best named warp disruptor; so I salvaged those, and docked them in the next system I came to that had a station.

Long story short, finally got to the system they said was contested back at the militia office. Their intel was old by the time I got there; it was firmly in Gallente hands and there were, oh, about a bazillion red stars in local chat. I therefore resolved to return whence I cameth.

Jumped through gate out of death stars central. While aligning for next warp, a red star in a newbie ship came warping in and stopped, 15km from gate. Bait, or noob?

Firing all guns!

Bait ship popped before all guns were activated. And then things went to shit.

I never really saw what hit me or where they came from; I think an enemy fleet must have followed me through the gate while I was sniffing the bait. All I know is, the sky filled with flashy reds and hungry drones, I exploded, my pod exploded, and it was all over. Free pwny ride for Mr. Bridger.

I just checked, there were ten different Gallente Federation scums in on my kill. But only six of them contributed to my pod-squishing.

It was overkill so bad it was funny, and fun as well. I never expected to survive; I don’t know what I’m doing in PvP, but I know enough to know that roaming around alone in a destroyer in lowsec is not survivable, even without hostile militia fleets setting traps. I just wanted to see the elephant. And boy, did I!

So I woke up in my clone bay … at the noob station of my birth, deep in (enemy) Minmitar space. Oops, should have moved the clone!

Go to undock. “It’s scum like you who’ve ruined your own lands, you’ll not ruin mine!” (Not a perfect quote, but you get the idea.) By the time I got control of my newbship after it squirted free of the station, it was being pounded by the Minnie faction navy. I went to kindergarten with those boys, but I guess they have their orders.

By the time my newbship made warp, I was into armor. From there it was a hot and hostile set of warps back to “friendly” territory, but nobody shot again before I could warp.

When I finally hit friendly territory, I did find an enemy newbship wreck and an enemy pod, drifting where the ship got blasted on jump-in. Was the pod pilot AFK? One way to find out!

Turns out a civilian gun only does two or three points of damage per shot, to a pod, and apparently the pod pilot was not far from his keyboard, because he warped out after about a dozen shots.

So now I’m back in the Ironfleet hangar, my clone is moved into the local clonevats, and I’m kicking the heat dissipation vanes on all these used Thrashers Marlenus bought, trying to decide which one gets blown up next.

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