Capsuleers are hunters by nature. We are finely tuned and trained weapons that seek out foes and annihilate them with utter impunity. We are effective, ruthless in this task, and we thrill in the taste of combat. It is in our nature.
Much sweeter, then, to use this skill and nature of ours for the cause of freedom. This past Friday, the 8th of December, the Villore Accords and our Gallente Militia allies launched a patrol of the border regions of Black Rise, Placid, and other systems to drive out piratical influences, the Caldari Militia, and other illegal agents, and drove home the point that the Federation shall continue to stand, even in the midst of the current turmoil and chaos of our universe.
Starting as we usually do from our old home of Vlillirier, base of many Roden Shipyards facilities and stations, we launched a blockade of the Aldranette stargate, often passaged by hostile entities and fleets reaving from Black Rise. We rapidly gained our first few kills, to our great suprise as this isn’t our most lucky of locations.
A hostile “Black Rise Matters” Dominix class battleship stupidly attempted to pick a fight with our formation on the Vlillirier gate. We launched a full assault on this thickly armored and heavily armed beast, tearing it to shreds before we could lose too many of our own to its onslaught. Meanwhile, our excellent hunters detected other valuable targets attempting to plunder the wealth of Rogue Drone sites inside Aldranette and her neighboring system, Evaulon. We tracked this advanced Stratios-class cruiser and tracked her warp trajectory to a site inside Evaulon, where the vessel was attempting to attack a friendly Gallente Militia Brutix class warship. We vanquished her quickly for her arrogance.
Little did we know that this was just the start of our extremely busy evening. There were frantic reports on voice communications about combat on the Aldranette Fedmart Warehouse, near Aldranette IX. Several fleet pilots had returned to the station to patch armor and structure damage after the past engagements, and were being pinned down by an advanced Loki-class strategic cruiser, capable of heavy precision artillery barages that could decimate any ships undocking from the station.
The pilot of this Loki was well known to us. Tentator was the frequent thorn in the side of Gallente pilots passing through Aldranette, and we had recently diverted a covert squadron there to deal with him last week. We decided upon a plan of using a smaller frigate or destroyer class vessel to entice Tentator to engage near the station perimeter, while warping in our fast attack frigates and interceptors to pin him down while our other fleet members were able to deal a death blow. We executed as soon as we reformed on the Aldranette gate in Evaulon, and it worked like a charm. Tentator stupidly fired his large bore artillery cannons on a solitary target, while others swarmed and tackled him, preventing his escape. While he was heavily armored, our forces dispatched his vessel before his allies undocked sufficient carrier-class capital ships from the station to save him. We retreated to the relative safety of deep space as his wreck burned brightly near the station’s undock.
While our fleet replenished losses of destroyer-class vessels from these skirmishes, we detected an enemy Caldari militia fleet jumped to the Vlillirier system from Aldranette. The timing for their arrival was not ideal as we only finished restoring our armor and ammunition stores, and we had only a few of our ships on the gate available. Thankfully, the Caldari uncloaked their ships in a haphazard fashion in front of our guns, and we were able to inflict grave damage, finishing off ten destroyers and a frigate for the loss of three destroyers and one Griffin-class frigate.
As the battle developed and finished, an Exodus pilot, Randal Bongsmoker attempted to try his luck with our blockade, and paid the price twice. Unfortunately for him, our attack frigate pilots excel at chasing down fast and maneuverable targets, and we were able to acquire a warp disruptor lock on his ship far too quickly for him to escape.
Having exhausted our available targets in the Placid region, our forces flew north, into the dark reaches of Black Rise. Due to the unusual configuration of local stargates, the warps between each gate consist of many dozens of astronomical units, no doubt an arcane and foolish strategic ploy by then-dictator Tibus Heth when the colonies in the region were established. However, our advanced scout pilots were able to locate and interdict a Tactical Narcotics Team Phantasm-class cruiser in the border system Iralaja, and we quickly finished it off as it was unable to flee.
As often occurs inside Black Rise, due to the real-space distances between stargates, and the chaos of the local political and military organizations, we found ourselves quickly in a tricky situation in the Innia system, nearby. Hostile Aggressive Asset Relocation ships had engaged a squadron of Capital Fusion ships, and it seemed to be an ideal scenario for us to inflict some damage. However, the battle was quickly out of our control, and we lost several frigates, including an advanced Garmur, piloted by Marcus Tarrow, to the fray. In the end, however, we emerged victorious, destroying a Cynabal-class cruiser in the process.
The prickly Capital Fusion private military corporation forces were provoked by this engagement, and appeared hungry for vengeance. They deployed a sophisticated Vargur-class Marauder on the Innia stargate in Kinakka. This posed a complex tactical situation for our forces. As we were armed in small, weakly-protected destroyers and frigates, we didn’t have the sheer stopping power or mass to protect ourselves from the onslaught the Vargur could dish out. We attempted a different approach instead: we enticed the Vargur to maintain its defensive Bastion mode, and kept it interested it with skirmishes and small scale frigate combat, while we negotiated for the arrival of friendly Gallente Militia capital ship support. When the friendly assets were prepared and able to jump, we launched a full assault. The Vargur took the bait, and engaged, while the carriers deployed a hellstorm of Fighter-based damage onto its shields and armor, decimating and destroying it. Gallente forces did take several casualties in this combat, but the Vargur was more than worth the effort. A combat-oriented Procurer was also taken in the resulting battle, as was a Vexor Navy Issue, and the remaining AAR forces were scattered to the refuge of the Kinakka Keepstar.
Normally the events of the past hour would be a cause of great celebration as our pilots would return to the bars of our respective home stations, but as fleet commander, I decided we were not quite done. The pilots raping and pillaging Black Rise and Placid had much to answer for, and we had a force capable of dishing out those very necessary corrective actions.
Intelligence reports indicated a squadron of battleships passing through the main Gallente Forward Operating Base of Rakapas. This was too tempting of our target, so our fast moving squadron redirected and found them. We destroyed a Bhaalgorn, Armageddon, and Typhoon, supporting our Gallente allies, as we trapped them on their only escape route, the Pynekastoh gate in Rakapas. The battle was hectic and the battleships managed to destroy several fleet ships during the fracas, but it ended in general Gallente victory as they had too few ships in general to resist our forces.
In the navigational charts of Black Rise, there are a few key chokepoints that end up being highly valued strategic locations for our Militia forces. The Akidagi-Nennamaila stargate route stands out as one of those locations. After the battle in Rakapas, we flew up to this spot and deployed around the gates. We were not disappointed, as Templis CALSF forces recklessly and fruitless threw themselves against us on the stargate, ending in several ships destroyed for no real losses. The remaining capsuleer pilots docked in the Templis CALSF Fortizar-class citadel did not undock or provide any resistance as we continued our blockade, and we moved on to our next destination. Often in capsuleer combat, remaining stationary leads to death and lack of military effectiveness. Moving and keeping the initiative leads, on the whole, to more effective fleets.
We returned to Kinakka, sensing that the Aggressive Asset Relocation pilots we fought earlier had some fight left in them. We happened upon their squad a Faction Warfare Large-class complex, and we engaged. It was of course a slaughter for the enemy, however, we gained one unexpected gift. A high-grade Slave implanted capsule belonging to Ragnar Kryec was destroyed, annihilating billions of isk of valuable resources. Why this pilot didn’t attempt to flee, or use a more sophisticated ship than a Rupture-class cruiser, we shall never know.
The nearby systems of Martoh and Kehjari have long been known as bastions of pirate and Caldari influence, so we moved our fleet onwards, towards these border territories. Our hunters expertly discovered a Salf Farmers Gnosis-class battlecruiser clumsily finishing a Rogue Drone site off in Kehjari, and our forces quickly swooped down upon it, annihilating him and his capsule. Again, another windfall befell the fleet in the form of a mid-grade Asklepian clone, which contained hundreds of millions of ISK of illicit Serpentis neuroimplants. We celebrated with a round of drinks back at Titania station after that one, I can tell you.
The fleet stood down after roughly four hours of continuous hunting, combat, evasive maneuvers, and patrol. We defeated more than seven billion ISK in ships and capsules. One of our favorite games in the Militia and the Villore Accords is that each man that gets a final blow on a ship makes another pilot in the fleet drink. Many drinks were exchanged that night… I still have the headache to prove it.
To our enemies, thank you for providing your valuables in the form of salvage. To our friends that flew with us, thank you for honoring your pledge of service and upholding your alliances. To those that we have not met yet, I tell you this: side with us, and we will be the best friends you ever have. Side against us, and we will be the most annoying enemies you can meet.
Good hunting, pilots.