Friday, July 31, 2015

Insidious Part 5 - The Conclusion

Fiction Friday. Escape pod here! Yes, technically that is a link to a post on here, but there are a number of Banters that have been added so have a look!

Insidious - Part 5

Yverens sat eating his breakfast as he heard footsteps behind him.

"I'm sorry." his wife said as she rounded the table "I don't know what happened last night. I'm so sorry I got that drunk."

"Don't worry about it." Yverens said forcing a smile. In his head the reply he thought about was "It's not a problem. We both made mistakes last night. You got blind drunk and collapsed, I fucked our daughters best friend on our marital bed so don't beat yourself up!"

She gave a half smile and went over to the coffee maker. Yverens sipped his Caldari tea. A refreshing, if somewhat unpatriotic, choice of his. Guilt flowed through his veins like molten metal. After they'd finished last night Vysena had gathered her clothes, kissed him and slipped out the room. He assumed she went to Doure's room. She'd left by the time he woke alone this morning. He'd left his wife in the spare room to sleep it off. On his orders millions had died. Technically they were not his orders personally. Executives and directors from high up passed the orders down to him but he was the one that passed the orders to the Capsuleers, the gods of destruction. Every pirate battleship that went down in the following confrontation ended the lives of hundreds of crew. Every pirate outpost destroyed killed countless men, women and children. However he'd never known guilt like this. It burnt his very soul.

I'm going to the Med-Centre this morning. Somethings not right, you know that. Since coming planet side I'm always tired, never in the mood for...." her voice trailed off.

"Want me to come with you?" he asked.

"No. I'll go by myself, I'm sure its just the change from years of living on a station and then moving planet-side. After the way I behaved last night you just relax." she said with a smile.

"What have I done?" he thought to himself.


Doure glanced out of the shuttle's window. They were stuck in a traffic jam at one of the stargates. A gun-metal grey Raven class battleship slowly passed them. She assumed it was piloted by a capsuleer. Even when the space-lanes were so busy the stargate control team limited jumps, the Empyreans still could get through. The rich and powerful never waiting in a queue.

She could hear Bouey at the back of the small craft laughing and joking with his zero-G handball team mates. Was he talking about what they did last night? Would he tell them with half a bottle of Gallente vodka and a lot of pressure she'd, what would be the word? Made love? Certainly not that. Fucked? That sounded right. Her first time had not been special and Vysena's influence seemed to drip from every pore. What was her supposed best friend up to.


Slens stepped outside of the cylindrical scanner and put her clothes back on behind the screen. Once dressed she stepped out and sat down opposite the doctors desk. He finished reviewing something on his datapad and then placed it down.

"Mrs Catelnau. I am a tad confused. You came to me worried about your health and said you had no idea what is wrong with you recently. The data I have here makes me think you know only too well what is wrong with you." he said sternly.

Slens looked shocked.

"I don't know what you are talking about!" she protested "What is wrong with me?"

"Substance abuse." he replied.

"What?" she said in shock. The Doctor narrowed his eyes.

"Your body is saturated with Bromide compounds. A powerful relaxant, which also lowers libido. That would explain your lack of interested in lovemaking that you told me about earlier and your general lethargy. I would say last night you partook in a large hit of Crash and three or four alcoholic drinks."

"I don't know what to say. Yes to the drinks last night but Crash? I would never! I have no idea where you would get that or what was the other? Bromide?"

"Mrs Catelnau. I cannot do anything unless you admit you have a problem."


The Doctor paused. "You do have a problem. Either you are lying or someone is giving you these substances without your knowledge. Either way, you have a problem!"


Doure waited outside the spaceport. They'd arrived early and her father wasn't supposed to pick her up for another hour. Bouey had left already after pretty much blanking her since the previous night. He had his way with her and that was that. She sipped her juice in the cafe at the port and looked up at the vid screen above the counter. The news channel was showing a special report on Croleur III. Cloned mercenaries in their bulky armour where trading fire over some sort of building. The ticker below showed that it was a Serpentis attack on a research centre.

She thought about the things Bouey had said last night. Just snippets that seemed to suggest Vysena had put him up to seducing her. Not only that but that she suggested she was a certain thing. Why would she do that?

Doure looked at the time, another half an hour before her dad was due to pick her up.


Yverens stood there in shock as his wife screamed at him. She was making no sense at all. From what he could gather from the hysterical rant she was accusing him of slipping drugs into her food. One one side this was good, he'd not seen her this energetic in months, however the fact she was screaming at him was bad. He'd tried to speak several times without success.

"Have you listened to yourself? Why would I give you drugs to make you not want me? I've been trying it with you for months!"

"So you are saying it's Doure? She's drugging me?"

"Of course not!" he protested.

"Oh so its Winston then! The drone's AI doesn't like us getting jiggy so has been slipping bromide compounds into my food and Crash into my wine?"

Doure! Yverens looked at the time. He needed to pick her up soon.

"Look, I don't know who but...." Yverens was interrupted by the door chime. The domestic drone floated past the door.

"Someone is drugging me so who is...." this time Slens was silenced as Vysena entered the room. Yverens heart nearly stopped.

"Look Vysena this is not a good time. Doure is not back yet." Slens said calmly.

Vysena smiled and approached them. Yverens looked at her nose and noticed she appeared to be wearing nose plugs.

"What are you...." Yverens started to say as Vysena brought her hands from behind her back. She held a blank aerosol canister. The two looked at her in shock as she sprayed it towards them.

Both Yverens and his wife fell to the ground in seconds.


Doure arrived back at home. He father was supposed to pick her up at the shuttle port but hadn't arrived. She'd waited an hour then grabbed a taxi after he finally replied to one of her messages. Apparently he'd been held up. She walked into the house and into the living room. She froze. There in front of her was her father. He was bound to a chair with duct tape across his mouth. Her mother was here too. Hung by the wrists from the far door again with duct tape across her mouth. The door slammed closed behind her. She span around to find Vysena there, a large carving knife pointing at her.

"Finally! She's here. We can get started!" Vysena announced and pointed over to another chair. Slowly Doure walked towards it.

"Why are you doing this?" she sobbed.

"Oh thats the billion ISK question isn't it! Why?"

Doure sat in the chair and Vysena taped her arms and legs securely.

"Daddy is the one that can answer that! He knows me for a long time ago!" she said standing up and walked over to Yverens.

"Make any loud noise and your daughter and wife will be gutted like a fish!" she hissed ripping the tape from his mouth.

"I don't know who you are!" he replied.

"I believe you!" Vysena said casually. "In fact if I gave you my real name, my dead daughters name and my dead husband's name you'd still have no idea who they are even though YOU killed them."

Yverens knew he was in trouble. However it still didn't fit. She was far too young to have a family.

"You are a clone!"

Vysena gave a long slow clap. "Well done. Of course I am. Did you think a college girl would be able to screw you as good as I did two nights ago. No, it takes a real woman to fuck a man like that!"

Yverens saw his wife's head snap in his direction. There was no use denying it. Vysena walked over to Slens.

"You know he was very easy you know. As soon as you were passed out we were on your marital bed going at it like a couple of Furriers." Vysena purred. "To be honest though I had more fun with Doure. I like them innocent. Although between me and Bouey she is certainly not that now." She picked up a remote and turned on the TV.

A shaky picture appeared. It took Yverens a moment to realise it was shot inside a tent. His daughter was naked on top of the sleeping bag, some college jock was on top of her.

"I put Bouey up to it. Said I'd give him the best night of his life if he could secretly get me a recording of him popping Doure's cherry! Yes, daddy's little girl is all grown up now!

"Who are you then?" Yverens growled.

"This body? Well it was meant for a girl called Emanuala. She'll be OK. She was in a medically induced coma, they just grow her another. Thats the thing working for the Sisters of Eve. They are so busy rescuing people that have been maimed on orders by people like you they cannot keep track of all the clones they need. Taking one was easy. My name is Toldori . Not that it will mean anything to you. Four years ago my family escaped a terrible war in Matari low-sec space, bartering transport on a pirate ship as our city burnt. A ship that unbeknown to us was smuggling other things as well as us. You had the convoy destroyed."

"Four years ago? I remember. You were the mother who survived. The one that was badly burnt!"

"I was in hospital for months. When I was released the Sisters offered me a job. I was a qualified clone technician and they were desperate for people with my skills. Where else was I going to go? My homeworld was ablaze with war and my daughter and husband were dead. Murdered by a Capsuleer carrying out your orders. Given the millions you have ordered killed, I'm impressed that you remembered our little family."

"Of course I remembered! I'm not a murderer! The intel said it was pirates carrying a shipment of Crash. We'd have never sent an Empyrean if we'd known there were refugees on board. That was the worst day of my life!"

"Well I'm here today to make it the second worse." she snarled. "I had bigger plans than this. However with your wife finding out about the drugs I've been slipping her it would had been only a matter of time before she found it was the coffee that was laced with the bromide. It would have led to me and the coffee shop in the end. Did you know I had to screw the owner to get that job!" 

She walked over to Slens. "Yes, not only your husband and your daughter, I've screwed the owner of where you buy your coffee and also the technician who updates your domestic drone. That's how I knew exactly whats been going on, I've had access to the eyes and ears of Winston. Anyway we're on an accelerated time line. Speaking of the drone, Winston!"

Yverens watched the domestic drone enter the room. It held something large in front of it. It took Yverens a few seconds to realize it was the large iron grill from the kitchen. Vysena walked over to Slens and pulled on her dress. Using the sharp knife she cut the garment away quickly followed by her underwear.

"Go ahead Winston!" she said stepping back.

"Winston deactivate!" Yverens ordered but nothing happened. The drone hovered across and lifted the grill. It was at this point he noticed a rope looped over the top of the grill. The drone placed this over Slen's head and backed off. Vysena took another length of rope and tied the grill tight against the sobbing woman. It covered her from the top of her chest to her thighs.

"What are you doing?" Yverens asked, terror in his voice.

"I'm creating that day four years ago. Do you remember what happened to me and my family? I was burnt. Horrifically, agonizingly and slowly burnt from the heatwave of a plasmatic smartbomb rushing over my make-shift escape pod. I'm going to demonstrate on your loving wife what I went through. But just not me." she said plugging the grill into a power outlet and turning on the switch. "My daughter died as the atmosphere leaked from her container, breached by the same blast. Now I cannot do the same to your daughter as we don't have a vacuum here. However, I can get close to the slow terror of suffocation."

Vysena picked up a clear plastic bag that was laying on the table.

"No please." Yverens begged.

"I'm guessing Doure will die first. Your wife will take a bit longer but it'll be much more painful. Then after you have watched your daughter and wife die I'll move onto you. My husband's body was never found. Likely shredded to biomass as he was sucked through a hull breach in the ship. So you and me and this carving knife will undertake an experiment to find how much flesh I can remove from someone before they die." she said as she pulled the bag over his daughter's head and tied it around her neck. Doure's eyes bulged in terror. The bag pressed tight against her face as she tried to draw breath.

"Winston. Alpha 1!" Yverens shouted. The drone didn't move.

"I reprogrammed your drone and removed your voice authentication. I'm not stupid" Vysena sneered as she sat in his lap.

"How long do you think Doure will last? 30 seconds? I think your wife should start to feel the heat any minute now too."

Yverens stared into his daughter's terrified eyes. Her frantic breathing was slowing and her eyelids started to droop. She frantically tried to draw breath but only succeeded in pulling the plastic of the bag into her mouth There was a crash that made everyone jump as the domestic drone fell to the floor.

"Ha! Looks like Winston got over excited. I guess I messed up hacking him. Oh well. Never...."

Vysena was cut short by a wail from Slen's muffled by the tape across her mouth.

"You think that's the grill starting to cook her or the fact she can see her daughter dying?" asked Vysena. She climbed off Yverens' lap and approached Doure who now was hardly moving. "Nearly there Yverens! She's dying slowly here." she taunted.

Suddenly there was a whir and the domestic droid started to hover again.

"Winston. Alpha 1!" Yverens shouted.

"Ha! I already told you...."

"AFFIRMATIVE!" the drone stated cutting Vysena off. The voice was different. Not the soothing upper class Gallente accent but a robotic, artificial tone.

"Deactivate!" Vysena shouted. The drone simply turned to her. A small hatch opened in its front. "Deactivate!" she said again, fear creeping into her voice. A whooshing noise swept through the room and everyone jumped as a glass vase on the far wall exploded. Vysena looked at Yverens in shock. Her gaze slowly swept down. A red stain started to appear on the front of her t-shirt. She placed her hands on her stomach. Thick red blood pumped through her fingers.

"How?" she whispered before falling to the floor. The drone moved quickly cutting through Yverens' restraints and he leaped up ripping the bag from his daughter's head who noisily gasped lungfuls of air. He then dashed to his wife, ripping the power cord from the wall and removing the grill strapped to her. The front of her body was bright pink, however he didn't think they were burns. He untied her and went over to Vysena. She was laying on the floor on her back gasping as her hands pressed against her stomach.

"How?" she repeated.

"Winston is a special drone provided to us ex-Capsuleer Agents. Anyone looking at his program would only see a normal domestic helper drone. Even the techs who maintain it. However he is connected to the dwellings scanners. If the vital signs of any of us three goes critical he reboots. His OS is then rewritten from a hidden WORM drive. Military-grade AI this time. Along with the 15mm gauss gun hidden in his chassis he is quite the guard. The 'Alpha 1' command is to tell him anyone other than my family in the home is a viable a target to be neutralized."

The girl nodded in understanding apparently accepting her fate. Yverens glanced behind to see his wife and daughter crying in each others arms. He looked down at Vysena's wound. The railgun round was never meant to incapacitate. At this range there was no other potential outcome. Her breathing had became ragged as she coughed up blood.

"Your husband and daughter are waiting for you. I'm so sorry over what happened that day." he whispered quietly as she breathed her last breath. The sound of distant sirens started to grow louder.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

BB65 - Useful Attributes

Welcome to the continuing monthly EVE Blog Banters and our 65th edition! For more details about what the blog banters are visit the Blog Banter page.

This months Banter was suggested by Jakob Anedalle

"I liked the discussion on The Neocom's recent "Tinfoil Factory" on the future of attributes in Eve. Perhaps piggyback on that and invite those folks into the banter as well?"

Attributes and Skills
Does Eve need attributes? It's been discussed a lot recently. Unlike other MMO's your characters attributes don't make a difference in day-to-day gameplay. They simply set how fast you train a skill. Is it time to remove attributes from the game or totally revamp their purpose? Do they add a level of complexity to the game that is not needed? If you really need to use a 3rd party application to get the most from it should it be in the game? Should they be repurposed with each attribute adding a modifier to your ship? Are attributes a relic from the past or are they an important part of Eve - You make your decision and deal with the consequences?

Banter on!


BB65 - Useful Attributes

I used to be one of the first posters in Blog Banters in the last few years. I'd have mine ready to go as soon as the day arrived. Now I post the topic on a Monday so leave my personal response until my usual Wednesday post. This has changed things as now I get to see what the 'early birds' are thinking. So far everyone is "KILL THEM WITH FIRE!". So I've decided to go against popular opinion and play devils advocate and suggest keeping them.

What if we made attributes useful as they are in other games? Rather than just setting how many skill points per hour you get, what if they actually made a difference in the game?

First job would be to decouple skill point acquisition from the attributes. How about we make it so everyone learns at the same base rate? 2000 SP per hour? 2500? Whatever it doesn't really matter at his stage.

With a standard SP gain there could be skill hardwiring implants to boost your SP per hour. These could be a modifier such as 5% bonus or a set amount such as +500 per hour (for the equivelent +5). Another idea would be to boost New Bros by tiering skillpoints. This would allow new players to catch up quicker.

Less than 10m SP = You train at 5000 SP per hour base
10m - 20m = 3000 SP per hour base
20 - 50m = 2500 SP per hour base
50m+ = 2000 SP per hour base

OK, now onto attributes. We keep the five attributes. 10 points available in each with the ability to change each +/- five points as the player see's fit. Free remap when implemented and perhaps have an annual remap or remap for PLEX? This gives a minimum of 5 points in any one attribute and, with +5 implants, the maximum you can get is 20. At 10 points there is no bonus, this is the normal level for characters. Every point below 10 is a negative to the mechanics affected by the attribute and every point above is a bonus. I've listed a few ideas below along with examples if you set the attribute at 5, 15 and 20.

Ability at running ship systems. +/- 0.2% modifier to both CPU and powergrid output.

5 Intelligence = -1% nerf to CPU and PG
15 Intelligence = +1% bonus to CPU and PG output
20 Intelligence = +2% bonus to CPU and PG output

Ability at aiming. +/- 0.4% modifier to turret and missile damage.

5 Perception = -2% nerf to damage
15 Perception = +2% bonus to damage
20 Perception = + 4% bonus to damage

Turn on the charm. Affects costs with setting up market orders. +/- 0.4% modifier to costs in creating market orders.

5 Charisma = Costs 2% more than base.
15 Charisma = 2% saving
20 Charisma = 4% saving

The ability to power through incoming damage. +/- 0.2% modifier to shield and armour amount.

5 Willpower = -1% nerf to hitpoints.
15 Willpower = +1% bonus to hitpoints
20 Willpower = +2% bonus to hitpoints

The ability to learn. +/- 1% modifier to training time.

5 Memory = -5% to hourly skillpoint amount
15 Memory = +5% to hourly skillpoint amount
20 Memory = +10% to hourly skillpoint amount

All these numbers would need tweaking and balancing. I've just used thrown these ideas out there without thinking too much of the consequences. I consider the general idea makes for more interesting gameplay and it could be made to really help new players. With the numbers above they could be gaining nearly 6000 skill points per hour until they hit 10m (+5 memory implant and a +5 equivalent skill hardwiring).

Monday, July 27, 2015

Blog Banter 65 - Attributes and Skills

Welcome to the continuing monthly EVE Blog Banters and our 65th edition! For more details about what the blog banters are visit the Blog Banter page.

This months Banter was suggested by Jakob Anedalle - "I liked the discussion on The Neocom's recent "Tinfoil Factory" on the future of attributes in Eve. Perhaps piggyback on that and invite those folks into the banter as well?

Attributes and Skills
Does Eve need attributes? It's been discussed a lot recently. Unlike other MMO's your characters attributes don't make a difference in day-to-day gameplay. They simply set how fast you train a skill. Is it time to remove attributes from the game or totally revamp their purpose? Do they add a level of complexity to the game that is not needed? If you really need to use a 3rd party application to get the most from it should it be in the game? Should they be repurposed with each attribute adding a modifier to your ship? Are attributes a relic from the past or are they an important part of Eve - You make your decision and deal with the consequences?

Banter on!

The Banters:-

Cloaky Bastard - Useless Attributes
Inner Sanctum of the Ninveah - Attribution
Eveoganda - My Brain Hurts
Notes from New Eden - At Rebukes
The Ancient Gaming Noob - Not for Attribution
Torchwood Archives - Attributes and Skills
Sand, Cider and Spaceships - Useful Attributes
Target Caller: BB65 - Easiest One Ever
Lexx Jonlan Tweets. I don't think he gets the BLOG Banter bit!
Low Sec Lifestyle - Blog Banter #65 - What is Interesting?
Crossing Zebras and also
Jakob's Eve Checklist - Attribution Needed?
Morphisat's Blog - Attributes

Sunday, July 26, 2015

SCASSSS - Space Potato

After telling us about it eons ago (well, Fanfest 2014 I think) CCP have revamped the space potato! The new Dominix is on the test server with a sleeker new design...

Friday, July 24, 2015

Insidious - Part 4

Fiction Friday. Escape pod here

Insidious Part 4

The metal orb hovered in the dimly lit chamber. There had been no rest for the students. The five jumps to the Deltole system took less than 30 minutes. After swapping to a small orbital drop-ship on the station they had arrived at the remote ruins on the planet. After setting up their camp they had immediately got to work surveying the ruins. The first job was a LADAR survey of one chamber for each team. Bouey had asked Doure if she wanted to team up. They watched the small micro-drone hover around taking a 3D survey of the ancient room.

"So do you think these are Yan Jung?" Bouey asked referring to the ancient civilisation.

Doure paused to think. There was a constant debate amongst academics on this issue. The Gallente race certainly shared some of the characteristics of what they had discovered about the Yan Jung but also there were plenty of differences. The inscriptions she could see didn't look Gallente. Plus there was a lot of debate why a clearly space-faring race would build this temple.

"Yes. I think these are probably Yan Jung. Problem is most of the ruins and archeological sites of the civilization have been found in space, not planetside. Why would they build this structure from crude stone when we know they were a spacefaring race millennia before we were?"

The two students fell silent think about that as the drone buzzed around.

On Fricoure Yverens was chatting to an old colleague at the party. Vice-Admiral Deuverin Ogorard had retired from the Federal Navy just before Yverens. They were discussing the situation in the distant star system of Tama. It was a strategically important system as it bordered Caldari high-sec. Federation control of that system severely restricted Caldari military access to a large section of low-sec and to one of the main 'pipes' to Federation space. The term 'pipe' was used to describe a series of closely spaced solar systems connected by star gates allowing sub-capital ships not equipped with a jump-drive to travel between them. There were six systems between Tama and the system known as Old Man Star, the equivalent system on the Gallente boarder.

"So the Squids took Tama?" Yverens sighed using the derogatory term for the Caldari.

"Yes. TEMPLIS forces based in Hasmijaala have been supporting the local militia and the pirate problem is worse than ever. For years the State Navy has been looking at taking Tama and forcing CONCORD to upgrade its security to an oh-point-five. Taking Tama into the State and allowing them to deploy the Navy and Police there will kill the bottleneck. No more pirates causing havoc and it would no longer be a bottleneck into high-sec. They would have a two pronged attack given the OMS-Sujerento pipe loops around into Tama as well as the OMS-Kedama pipe. We have to hope our politicians can keep the status quo or our militia takes it back soon."

Yverens nodded sipping his drink. If the State was able to annex Tama it would be an unmitigated disaster for the Gallente Federation. He heard a laugh to his left. Glancing over he saw Vysena serving drinks to a small group of his friends. She looked over her shoulder and met his gaze. His heart fluttered as she gave him a smile.

On Deltole 6 it was late. The students had completed the LADAR surveys of their designated chambers and had all retired to their tents. Doure was sat up nervously. The call for lights out had gone off half an hour ago. It was nearly time. Bouey had sat next to her on the shuttle. He had been amazing and they'd talked and laughed all the way there. She couldn't help but notice the looks they got from some of the other girls but she didn't care. When he asked to be her field partner she had tried to look casual about it but knew he probably could see her excitement. The sound of the tents zipper being slowly pulled made her hold her breath. The flap opened and she saw him in the light of the moons. He slipped inside the tent and held up a bottle. Doure smiled as she saw the bottle of Gallente vodka and the handsome face in the dim moonlight.

Back on Fricoure the party was in full swing.

"You have to tell me the agency you used!" Someone whispered into Yverens's ear from behind.

"What agency?" he asked turning to his ex-colleague. Linead worked with him nearly a decade ago in the Federal Navy. Married with three kids but a known ladies man.

"Come on, don't hold back. The waitress! Where in Divinities Edge did you hire her from?"

Yverens realised what his friend was saying. He glanced over and saw Vysena serving drinks to a couple and laughing and joking. She was a natural at this.

"I didn't hire her. She's one of Doure's friends." he replied.

"She's a college girl? Oh man, I need to find the wife and chain myself to her to ensure I don't make any mistakes. It would be amazing, but divorce is not worth it. Am I right!" he laughed, slapping Yverens on the back.

As his friend left he watched Vysena work the room. Everyone had a drink and everyone was having a good time. Other than his wife of course. She was doing the dutiful wife routine but had hardly spent any time with him. "Yverens how are you? Wonderful party!" a familiar voice behind him said. He turned to greet his neighbour, tearing his eyes away from Vysena in that dress.

"How are you doing Mrs Catelnau?" Vysena asked on the other side of the room.

"I'm OK Vysena. Thanks. I've told you before to call me Slens. I hate these things to tell you the truth." Slens smiled awkwardly. She disliked these gatherings that her husband threw but grinned and bared it never the less.

"I can tell." Vysena replied and span her drinks tray around. At the back of the tray behind all the champagne was a single glass of Amarrian red wine."

Slens smile beamed. "Whatever my husband is paying you its not enough."

A few hours later and the house was almost quiet. The last guests were leaving and Vysena was clearing the glasses. Yverens said goodbye to the last guests and closed the door. His wife was leaning against the wall drinking a half full glass of red wine.

"Well thank frack that's over!" she slurred.

"How many have you had?" he asked sternly.

"No enough!" she muttered and tried to stand upright. She wobbled and fell down to one knee. The glass fell to the floor and bounced on the lush carpet spilling the wine everywhere. Yverens rushed over and helped her up. She was so unsteady he was struggling to hold her as she slipped in and out of consciousness. Vysena suddenly appeared and supported her under the other shoulder.

"Looks like someone had a very good time!" she said. Yverens just rolled his eyes as they walked towards the stairs. It was a struggle to get her up to the first floor.

"No more! Lets put her in the guest bedroom! I cannot handle another flight of stairs." Yverens said guiding them to the nearby door. Within a few minutes they had her in bed and quietly closed the door.

"Well that was a fun party." Vysena beamed.

"Yeah." mumbled a distracted Yverens. His wife never got that drunk, it was very out of character. "Look its going to be a nightmare getting a taxi now at this time. Why don't you stay in Doure's room and I'll drop you downtown in the morning.

"That would be great!" Vysena smiled.

Back on Deltole Doure was buzzed from the drink. The bottle lay half empty beside them. They had been kissing for almost an hour and her jaw was starting to ache. His hand again dropped low and she grabbed his wrist pulling it back to her chest.

"Easy tiger." she whispered "Not so fast!"

He gave an awkward smile and went back to the kissing.

Yverens heard a knock on his bedroom door as he was unbuttoning his shirt. 'Towels!' he thought, 'Vysena must need some towels'. He opened the door ready to apologies but stopped. Vysena was stood there looking as she did at the party. She held a bottle of champagne and two crystal flutes and a look on her face that was a half smile.

"I wasn't sleepy and with you schmoozing all evening and me serving we forgot to enjoy ourselves. I thought a nightcap was in order?"

Every fibre of his being screamed 'no'. Letting her in here was the point of no return. He'd be mad to even contemplate it. It could ruin his life. Yet he found himself smiling and backing up into the bedroom swinging his arm into the room. Vysena smiled and walked in swaying her hips. She placed the flutes on the bedside table and poured a glass each. She passed Yverens a glass and he took it. She sat down on the edge of the bed. He soaked in her beauty. The voices in his head continued to scream warnings but he ignored them. He considered sitting next to her but that was too much. He grabbed the stool from his wife's dressing table and sat opposite her, using the bedside table both as drinks table and to provide some distance between them.

"You OK? You look sad?" she asked.

"I'm OK. Busy night and its been a funny couple of month. The girls haven't settled into planet-side life as I would have hoped." he replied. "How are you?" he asked hoping to deflect the subject.

"I'm OK now!" she said taking a drink."Although these shoes have killed me with bring on my feet all of tonight." She kicked off a high heeled shoe and rubbed her foot. She looked deep into Yverens's eyes and gave a wicked smile. Slowly she extended her leg so her foot was hovering between his knees. "Would you mind?" she pouted with a half smile.

Yverens stared at her shapely leg. This was a line he should not cross. She might be asking for a foot rub, but he knew it was in no way innocent. He'd be mad to do it and it would be best to say say he thought it would be inappropriate.

"No! Stop it!" Doure snapped pushing Bouey off her.

"Come on!" he whined.

The making out had got hot and heavy but she was still resisting him.

"We only had a first kiss tonight. That means your hands stay above the waistband!"

Bouey flopped on his back sighing. "Vysena said you'd be up for it!" he moaned.

"What?" Doure said shocked.

"Vysena said you were a real wild one. Said you'd not come on to me but if I showed interested you were a sure thing!"

Doure's head span. Why would her friend say that? Did she put him up to this? May be she said it as he'd not be interested unless he thought she was up for some fun? Vysena was obviously more experienced in all this but Doure was worried about what she had been saying to Bouey behind her back. She swallowed and climbed on top of him.

"We've got all night. No need to rush!" she said pulling her t-shirt over her head.

"How did I get to this point?" Yverens thought screwing his eyes tight back on Fricoure. He retraced how he'd got to this moment in his head. Rather than turning her down he'd moved the chair closer and taken her silk-clad foot in his hands, slowly massaging the sole with his thumbs. She had smiled and leaned back as he worked her foot. After a while he swapped to the other. "Could you do my calf too?" she asked "Those heels look great but they are murder on the legs". He'd moved closer, running his hand up her silk-clad leg to reach her calf. It was as he moved that her other foot touched his inner thigh. The slight touch was electric sending shockwaves through his entire body. She moaned softly as he massaged her calf. Her other foot slowly started to lightly stroke his leg. "A little higher" she whispered. He moved a bit forward, her other foot creeping up his thigh as he hid. She shuffled down a bit causing the slit in her dress to ride up. We swallowed hard as he saw the stocking tops, suspenders and pale flesh of her upper thighs. He ran his hands much higher.

That wasn't underwear a college girl wore, that was what a woman looking to seduce a man wore. She extended her leg and it pressed into his hardness. She smiled at him seductively, all pretense now gone as she massaged him with her foot. Within a minute his willpower had collapsed and they were both on the bed ripping their clothes off.

The situation on Deltole had been similar. A slow escalation to the same outcome.

Now, both Yverens and his daughter Doure lay on their backs, light years apart but feeling the same. Both overcome with regret.

To be concluded....

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Relating the Eve-O Structures Revamp to Dinosaurs

Myself, an Italian ex-Caldari Militia pilot, a very talkative excitable French Lady, an American and a couple of suicidal Norwegians have a base... and it's protected by a raptors, a stegosaurus, two triceratops and a diplodocus!

No, these are not new ships, this is in Ark: Survival Evolved. Most of you have probably heard of the early-access title. A few probably play it. FunkyBacon from Eve Radio is certainly a fan. Basically its team-based Minecraft with fantastic graphics and dinosaurs. You start with a primitive stone pick and camp fires and level up gaining new engrams (which are crafting recipes) which advance with you. I can build metal spears and crossbows currently. In the end it will be mini-guns and RPGs under electric lights with the AC cooling our house. Its a social game and whilst you can play solo its much better in a group. You cannot learn all the engrams, there are too many. So it needs some coordination between team members. With us, our 'Italian Stallion' is concentrating on structure and tools engrams, the French lady is in charge of painting, decorating and farming (completely her decision!), I'm in charge of learning and building saddles for the dinos and Knut is in charge of getting himself eaten by various carnivores ("I go exploring!" - 1 minutes later - Tribemate Knut was killed by *insert name of dinosaur here*). So what has this all got to do with Eve. Well....

Building a base is one of the most fun things to do in Ark and in related news, over in Iceland, CCP Vbi.... Vbrit..... Vitb...... CCP the French Chap and the team are working on revamping structures in game. The plans appear to be to make structures like ships. High slots, mid slots, low slots, rigs and, similar to T3 sub systems, 'service slots'. You'll have some customisation over your 'space house' but only minor.

Eve is unlikely to have the same ability to externally customise but I would hope we can have some. Perhaps 'anchor points' on the base model that facilities can be bolted to. Add a laboratory to your outpost? It adds a white, laboratory looking cylinder to the point of your choice. Want a refinery? You choose where the rusty-industrial looking cube of a structure is bolted to your 'space house'.

I would to see more customisation inside too. Think Skyrim or Fallout 3. What if you could customise your own Captains Quarters? Add extra rooms? Want to produce boosters in your outpost, the door in the CQ accesses an actual lab! Rather than the industry interface you can actually enter the lab and program your manufacturing. Imagine the rooms that could be done for manufacturing (a ship design lab with holographic representation of your blueprints and may be a window looking into a construction hanger were the ship(s) are being built. Could even have models for part-built ship so you can slowly see your ship being constructed!

Finally could we get the same 'team' mentality when building a base in Ark? I don't think we can in Eve. In Ark we are always working together. You get wood, you get stone, you get metal, you get thatch. 'Mining' in Ark is more hands on than Eve. In Eve you can read a book, Ark you need to get ready for when the dino comes up behind to meat-mine you as you are bashing a rock for metal. A lot of the satisfaction in Ark is watching it slowly take shape due to your efforts. That bit of wall there? Thats just gone up because YOU brought a load of wood back and the guy with the wood wall engram crafted it and placed it. Its strangly satisfying. I mean when I first started in Eve I took place in corp mining ops and have built an outpost, but in Ark its just better.

Building structures in Ark will always be more fun than in Eve because of the way the games work. However, I think there are a few ideas CCP could take from this very popular game and similar titles.

Monday, July 20, 2015

More on Polarised Weapons

Yesterday I posted a pretty bad loss-mail for the Special Sunday Short. Someone had taken a Navy Raven and fitted Polarised Launchers on it. These weapon systems released last year can be found in Sleeper Caches give monster DPS. However, they drop all your resistances to zero. Absolutely zero no matter what you fit. Shields, armour and structure are all zero resistance across the board and you cannot change that.

DCU? Zero!
T2 Shield Hardener? Zero!
Deadspace Hardener? Still Zero!
Rigs? Surely rigs help? NOPE! ZERO ZERO ZERO!

Here is what happens to a (mostly unfit) BC when you fit any polarised weapon on:-

So the question has been asked what is the point of these weapon system given they turn your ship into a glass cannon?

Well, they are used on glass cannons!

Their main use is pretty much to be used when you need a metric f**k-ton of DPS but are not going to get shot. For example a PoCo or undefended PoS. Especially in a home system or low-sec/NPC Null station system.

Purifier - Glass Cannon
The Purifier (or the Hound depending on what damage is best) is a good choice from all the bombers as it has an extra low-slot so you can add in an extra BCU for a bit more DPS.

DPS - 951
EHP - 1750
Cost* - 145m

Talos - Glass Cannon
Already a DPS monster, adding polarised weapons to it and going all out DPS makes a Vindicator green with envy (and a green Vindicator is just a Megathron really!)

DPS - 1658
EHP - 8481
Cost* - 200m

The tank of these ships is pretty bad. The only way to tank a polarised fit ship is with a huge buffer but with zero resists its never going to be a great tank. However given the price of these weapons, its mostly best to leave them untanked and go balls-deep with full glass cannon fits and run at the first sign of trouble!

Anyone got another use for them?

*Costs from EFT as it was DT as I wrote this!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

SCASSSS - A Polarizing Fit

Someone doesn't get how polarized weapons work....

Just in case you yourself don't know, they set all resistances to zero. So all those nice shield resistance mods... yeah.... do nothing but drain cap. Hence 11k damage to kill a Raven!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Insidious - Part 3

Fiction Friday. Escape pod here.

Still not sure about this one. Oh well, lets play it out to its conclusion anyway....

Insidious - Part 3

"The next field trip will be in two weeks time. A three day visit to the ruins on Deltole Six as well as a special shuttle ride to the ruins in orbit around the moon of the same planet. Yes boys and girls, we get to do some space-archaeology on this one! Costs, number of extra credits for the dig and permission slip proformas are on the appropriate page on the network." the Professor stated to the class.

"The ruins are some 10,000 years old and carry inscriptions of an unknown language. There are some who believe they are Yan Jung related but others say there are major inconsistencies in the architecture and writing. These are perhaps the most important Gallente related ruins we will visit on this course so I strongly advise you to come on this extra trip especially if your are lacking credits. Remember to hand your current assignments in before you leave."

The classroom became noisy as the students all stood and started to file towards the door.

"Want to stay over tonight and work on our Federation/Caldari history coursework?" Doure asked as Vysena pulled in beside her in the queue to hand in their assignments.

"Sure your folks won't mind?" 

"No problem. I'll let mum know you're staying and Winston can make extra for dinner."

"Winston?" Vysena asked.

"Our domestic drone. He cooks the food."

"You have a drone to do the housework?" Vysena asked incredulously.

"Erm yes." replied Doure sheepishly.

"How the other half live!" joked Vysena as they passed the professor their work and headed out of the college.

Later that evening the girls were laid out on Doure's bedroom floor. Datapads laid out in front of them as they worked on their assignment on the first Gallente/Caldari war.

"So you going on that archy field trip?" Vysena asked.

"I don't think so." Doure mumbled.

"Why not? Bouey is going." Vysena teased. Doure looked at her in shock.

"What?" Vysena smiled. "You think I don't know? I've seen how you look at him. You want a piece of that and I don't blame you, he's hot. Hey if I had time for a boyfriend I'd have taken him if you didn't."

Doure looked all embarrassed. "I want to go on the trip but my dad is holding one of his parties that weekend. I wait on the guests when he does."

"What? He makes you serve at a house party in your own house?" Vysena asked in surprise.

"Yeah. He says it keeps me grounded and teaches me the value of sacrifice and work. I cannot complain. Its better than having to get a real job."

Vysena nodded in understanding. Doure realized what she'd said and kept quite not wanting to say anything that might offend her friend. At that point Yverens called up from downstairs to say dinner was ready. The two girls charged down stairs into the dining room. Yverens smiled and nodded to Vysena in greeting as she entered. His wife approached the new-comer.

"Hi. I'm Slens." she said extending her hand. Vysena shook it.

"Yes I know. We've met many times. Oris roasted coffee beans, 2kg?" she said with a friendly smile. Slens' face was one of confusion. Suddenly she put her hand over her mouth in shock.

"Oh my! You are the girl who works in the coffee shop! I'm so sorry I didn't recognize you." she said in horror. "I'm horrified!"

"Don't worry about it. Those awful hats we have to wear as part of the uniform aren't very flattering." Vysena laughed.

They took their seats as Slens explained she would pick up her special coffee blend up from a specialty shop uptown. Vysena said she'd been working there for the last couple of months to help pay the rent on her apartment. This led to a bit of an abridged history of how Vysena got here. She explained that her family had died in an accident but didn't give details and nobody pressed. She'd survived and been taken in by the Sisters. She'd stayed with them having nowhere else to go. Finally she came of age and wanted to go to college so had left the Sisters.


"You going on the field trip?". The voice came from behind her as they filed out of their Gallente Culture lecture which made her spin around. Bouey was standing there smiling at her.

"I... I... I..." Doure stammered looking up at her crush.

Bouey was a traditional Gallente college all-star. Blonde, incredibly handsome, athletic, on the college zero-G handball 1st team and overall popular guy. Doure had never spoken to him. As far as she knew he didn't know she even existed.

"I don't think so. We have a family thing." she managed to get out.

"That's a shame." he said sounding genuinely disappointing. "I was hoping you'd be coming."

Doure shrugged and continued walking. She caught up with Vysena. "You'll never believe what happened!" she said excitedly.

"What?" Vysena asked.

"I'll tell you later when you come round to do our coursework!" Doure teased and sped on!

It was hours later when they were up in Doure's bedroom working on their homework she told Vysena what had happened.

"Bouey asked if I was going on the archy field trip!" Doure gushed.

"No!" squealed Vysena . "You HAVE to go!"

"I can't." Doure said sadly. "Remember I'm waiting at my dad's party!"

"I have an idea." with that Vysena sprang to her feet and ran from Doure's bedroom. Doure jumped up and gave chase.

"No! Stop! Whatever you are doing stop it!"

Yverens was downstairs in his 'den' on his datapad when he hear fast approaching feet. Whilst retired as an agent for the Federation Navy, he still kept up with Empyrean matters. The three big screens relayed what was happening that day. 

Vysena appeared in the doorway looking as hot as ever. He cursed himself for thinking that. She was the same age as his daughter!

"Hey Mr Catelnau." she almost purred. He could hear more fast approach footsteps.

"I've got a proposition for you."

Yverens raised a questioning eyebrow as his daughter skidded into the room.

"Whatever she said, tell her no!" his daughter gasped.

"What is it?" Yverens asked putting his datapad down.

"The Archeology course has a field trip to Deltole Six at the weekend. It gives a lot, and I mean a lot, of extra credits. Doure won't even ask you if she can go because she's working at your party that weekend. I'd like to offer to stand in for her so she can go on the dig and get the credits. As she's lacking a bit."

"No!" Doure said.

Her father looked at his daughter.

"Is this true? Are you lacking credits?" 

His daughter looked at the floor. The start of the semester was difficult with the bullies and she'd missed several lessons and been unable to concentrate in those she did attend. It was true she was lacking credits.

"I can make them back. Things are, well, better now."

Yverens considered that fact. It was obvious this friend had made a dramatic change on her life. She was certainly studying harder now and he'd not received a single absence report since they'd met.

"OK you can go and thanks for the offer Vysena but you don't need to do that."

"Oh I insist." Vysena said placing her hands on her hips "My idea. My way. I'll replace Doure as the waitress at your gathering. Don't worry, it'll be great!"

As the two girls retreated upstairs Yverens thought about it, and he did worry. Fellow former agents, polititians and several members of Gallente high-society attended his gatherings. It could all go horribly wrong!

"You get to make out with Bouey!" Vysena said excitedly jumping on Doure 's bed. She looked at Doure's reaction. It was not as expected.

"What is it?" she asked as Doure plonked herself down on the bed despondent.

"I....." Doure started but trailed off.

"You've never made out with a guy before?" Vysena asked surprised.

"No." was the curt answer.

"Oh. I'm sorry." Vysena apologised. An awkward silence followed.

"But you know what to do right? You've practiced right?"

Doure looked at her friend in confusion.

"With girlfriends. You've practiced haven't you?"

"Urrghhh! NO!" Doure replied shocked.


"What do you mean 'oh'. Have you?"

"Of course. If you don't learn then the first guy you do kiss will think you're a bad kisser and guys talk. Before you know it every guy within 2AU knows it. Me and the girls practiced a lot at the Sisters. First guy I kissed said I was the best kisser he'd ever dated!"

Doure looked sad. "No. I never have."

"Come here!" Vysena said.

Doure stayed where she was and looked at Vysena with a 'seriously?' look.

"If you don't learn Bouey will be disappointed and if word gets out you'll not get another boyfriend at this college. You want that?"

Doure shook her head as Vysena patted the bed in front of her as she swung onto her knees and sat upright. Begrudgingly Doure mirrored her position. Her heart racing.

"Calm down. Looks like you are going to have a heart attack. Vysena laughed reaching forward and brushing some hair from Doure's face."

"I'm sorry" she muttered.

"Relax. Her friend said. "Just close your eyes."

Doure close her eyes and waited. A few seconds passed and nothing happened. Then she felt a presence. Hot breath on her lips.

"Lick your lips" she heard Vysena whisper. She did and a second later felt soft lips envelop her own. She kissed her friend back. Slowly and tenderly.

"Not bad. Seriously that was your first?" Vysena said pulling back.

Doure nodded looking dreamily. 

"OK lets crank it up a notch. Bouey is eighteen not fourteen."

Vysena leant in again and Doure met her for the kiss. This time there was more passion. Doure felt Vysena's hot wet tongue pass between her lips seeking out her own. They melted together on top of the bed.

A few days later Doure took her seat on the shuttle. It was only a couple of jumps to Deltole but she was nervous. She sensed movement to her side and glanced up. Bouey was smiling down at her.

"Is this seat taken?"

"Erm... I..... no." she stuttered.

He placed his bag in the overhead locker and took the seat strapping himself in.

"First job when we arrive..." the Professor said loudly over the chatter "Is to set up your hab-tent. I've specifically asked for these to remain packed at the site as you need to learn how to install them. We'll be visiting the orbit ruins on the way back home."

The fasten safety belts light illuminated with a ping, stopping the Professor from continuing. A few minutes later the engines roared into life and the small shuttle blasted off from the spaceport.

Back down on the planet Yverens paced up and down. He was thinking he should have never trusted that girl. Yes she'd had a hard life but she was obviously damaged goods. Why he agreed to this he'll never know. He glanced at his watch. Ten to eight and no sign of his 'helper' for the night. His guests would be arriving soon and he'd have to get the domestic drone to serve. His wife would be down in a minute and he'd get it in the neck for agreeing to this in the first place. "Damn it" he muttered. He should have just let Doure go on the field trip and got hired help in. The buzzer on his front door sounded. The first guests! He opened the door and was shocked. Vysena was stood there wrapped in a long coat. Her hair had been styled so that it framed her face. The usual dark heavy makeup was gone. She was in a word stunning.

"I'm so sorry Mr Catelnau for being late. I couldn't get a cab from the transit station." she said stepping in.

Yverens was lost for words.

"Is there somewhere I can stash this?" she asked removing the coat. If he had been lost for words before, he was struck dumb now. Her dress fit like a second skin. Amarrian silk if he wasn't mistaken but Gallente styled. The electric red shimmied in the light. Through the long slit in the dress he could see one of her shapely legs clad in glossy black silk and the high heels matched the red of the dress. She looked like a cocktail waitress in a five start hotel on Gallente Prime. No, he reconsidered, she'd be appropriate on the arm of some Quafe Corporation executive.

"Mr Catelnau?" she repeated.

"Oh yes, sorry, I.... there are trays of champagne in the kitchen can you make sure everyone gets one as they arrive." he said holding his hand out for her coat and trying to compose himself.

"Of course. I'll do anything you want." she smiled and turned leaving Yverens there debating the real meaning of those words as he watched her sway towards the kitchen.

To be continued.......

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Fozzie Sov Hits!

War.... war never changes.... unless CCP change it.... then it changes.

Yesterday Fozzie Sov hit the servers. No more super-cap blobs grinding a gazillions of hit points. Now one man and a cruiser can really screw you over unless you have active people.

CCP have made the conscious decision to allow everyone to see who is kicking who. I guess because CCP want 3rd parties rocking up and causing trouble. Dotlan has all the events on their website here Within the first few opening hours it appeared to kick off...

As well as Dotlan, the website shows all the current timers and you can sort by type etc. So if you want to crash a station timer or want to find when a certain alliance is going to be desperatly defending their iHub you can find out.

The in-game map has Sov tools such as showing you Freeport stations if you are looking for them.

It also tells you what's happening in a bit of detail too.

At the time of drafting this on Tuesday we were only a few hours into a brave new world and I think the map of recent Sov changes is only getting started....

Monday, July 13, 2015

Kill Board Values?

I popped on to Eve over the weekend with a free half hour. I hoped they'd be some action in our system. I found a single Frog as I logged on and checked the KB. He liked sniper ships. Lots and lots of sniper ships. I undocked in an arty Thrasher and scanned. Catalyst in the Small Outpost. Went in, fought, blapped him, podded him. 1m ISK ship and 47m Pod. I warped to station, dropped off loot repaired and through I should close that plex. So I went back to roll the 20 minute back and capture it.

Soon I got a Condor on short scan. No Frogs in system so must be one of the pirates or a blue. I overheated the web just in case and waited. Pirate! I got him to structure before he's able to get away. He warps off and I stay there. A few minutes later he's back. I overload ALL THE THINGS assuming he's refit in station to counter my Arty Thrasher. He comes in and I blap him and also get his pod too. Mid-grade Slave set. Nice. 4.8m ISK ship and a Pod just under a billion ISK.

Later that night I was on the Eve-Kill board and saw my kills for the month was at 4bn nearly. Wut? My Eve mojo has been low recently and I've not been playing a lot. The first pod was valued by Eve Kill at over 3bn whilst the client said it was 47m.

So how do different killboards value these kills? Lets compare the values that the client, Eve-Kill, zKill and BattleClinic gave to these four kills.

In Game- 0.98m ISK
Eve-Kill- Kill Missing
zKill- 2m ISK
BattleClinic- 1.8m ISK

Catalyst's Pod
In Game- 47m ISK
Eve-Kill- 3500m ISK
zKill- 454m ISK
BattleClinic- 390m ISK

In Game- 4.8m ISK
Eve-Kill- Kill Missing
zKill- 7.1m ISK
BattleClinic- 7m ISK

Condor's Pod
In Game- 0.84bn ISK
Eve-Kill- 1.1bn ISK
zKill- 0.93bn ISK
BattleClinic- 0.98bn ISK

Fair old difference there. That first pod has the wildest swing with the four CA implants. But who is right? 47m in-game calculation, three and a half billion on Eve-Kill or somewhere around 400m which zKill and BC think.

So what can I but that clone setup for in Jita today?

CA-3 = 60m
CA-1 = 180m
CA-2 = 160m
CA-4 = 60m

So its actually worth 460m this weekend. Congratulations zKill, you are the closest to the actual values!

Sunday, July 12, 2015


So Fozzie Sov lands next week. But even better than that... more blue ships!!!! We have Augoror Navy Issue, Devoter, Guardian (not a lot of difference to the ANI) and Vengeance amongst the new EoM skins.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Insidious - Part 2

Friday Fiction! Escape pod here. This is part 2 following last weeks piece.

Insidious Part 2

Four years later.......

Yverens slowed the vehicle and brought it to a stop outside the sprawling college. It was good to have a car again. On the station it was mostly transit and lifts.

"You'll be fine!" he said turning to his daughter who looked terrified.

She meekly nodded and opened the door. Yverens watched her climb the steps with the other students. He worried about her. She'd never been the popular girl at school. A bit of a geek and with a very small circle of friends. Moving from the station to planet-side had been hard for her. Starting college here she'd need to make all new friends.

As she disappeared inside the building he pulled away and into the traffic. It was a complete change for him too. He'd left the Federal Navy two months ago. The last few years had been hard. He had found it more and more difficult to distance himself from the death and destruction he ordered Capsuleers to carry out on a daily basis. The orders where not his own of course. They were given down through directors and executives paid a magnitude more than him. However it had still been tough in the last years. The nightmares came most nights. Hundreds of thousands had died through the contracts he brokered. Mostly pirates who decided to live on the wrong side of the law, although there was always collateral damage. He shuddered at the term. Women and children killed for the greater good whatever that was.

He and his wife had decided to take a year off work as Doure settled into college and they settled into their new lives. Two months in and his new life wasn't going at all to plan. His wife wasn't interested in him lately and his daughter had withdrawn further into herself. He was worried especially with the notifications he got when his daughter was absent. Hence why he was now driving her to college. Luckily he couldn't see what was happening inside the builting.

"Look at 'little miss Daddy was an agent' here! Probably thinks she's too good for us." the taller girl sneered.

Three of them had Doure backed into a corner. She had her bag pulled tight across her chest. The three popular girls had taken an instant dislike to her on the first day and had made the last two months hell for her.

"Please. Just leave me alone!" Doure whispered.

"Or else what? Daddy going to call an Egger on us?" the leader asked drawing a chuckle from the other two girls.

"No. You'll have to answer to me." another voice said.

All four girls looked around surprised. Doure vaguely recognized the girl who spoke. She was was leaning against the nearby lockers. Doure shared a few classes with her but never said anything to the unknown girl. She was ethnic Gallente. Raven black hair was straightened down to her shoulders. She was someone you'd call beautiful and Doure had thought how her life might be different if she'd looked like her. She also thought looking like that she'd be one of the popular girls. May be a cheerleader on the Zero-G Handball team. Someone not interested in speaking to Doure.

"Oh and what will you do?" the leader asked turning to face the other girl. Hands on hips defiantly.

The new girl looked her up and down.

"First I'll take you down with one blow. Whilst you are on the ground crying I'll break her pretty little nose" she pointed to the girl on the left. "And her..." pointing to the one of the right pausing a second "I think I'll split her lip and knock out her two front teeth."

The three girls were stunned into silence for a moment then all laughed.

"I'd like to see you try!" said the leader.

The new girl simply shrugged her shoulders and approached.

Doure watch the three bullies tense but hold their ground. The leader stood defiantly. The new girls fist moved faster then anyone could expect. The punch hit the leader in the solar plexus and she went down fast. The bully lay on the floor gasping for air looking like a fish out of water. The stranger turned to face the next girl.

"It was your nose next wasn't it before her teeth?" she asked casually thumbing behind her to indicate the other girl she had her back to.

The girl shrieked and ran. She didn't need to even look at the one behind her as the sound of fast moving heels clicked down the corridor.

"You OK?" the girl asked Doure who was staring at her former bully laying on the corridor wheezing. A small crowd of students had gathered around.

"Erm. Yes. Er. Thank you?" she stuttered.

"Don't mention it." the stranger said and casually walked off.


Doure walked into her archeology class and scanned around. She spotted the girl who had stood up to her seated near the back. She walked over.

"Hi!" Doure said nervously.

The raven haired girl looked up and smiled.

"Hi yourself." she replied in a friendly tone.

"I'm Doure."

"I know. I'm Vysena." The girl said extending a hand.

Doure took her hand and was amazed how soft her skin was. A pang of jealousy crept into her.

"Look I just wanted to say thanks again for earlier. Why did you help me?"

Vysena smiled. "Look, I know their type. Seen them before, had that type on my case before. Through trial and error I learnt that is by far the best way to deal with them. I doubt you'll have any more physical trouble. They might still talk behind your back but thats all. Take a seat." she said indicating to the empty chair next to her. Doure smiled and sat down.

The two girls started to chat.


Nex morning Yverens sat at the breakfast bar in the kitchen eating his Gallente toast in a foul mood. His wife was 'not in the mood' again last night and any moment his depressed daughter would come downstairs and depress him even more. He was wondering if he had made a mistake giving up being an agent and leaving the space station to come planet-side. At least up there they had been settled and happy. He heard footsteps down the stairs. They were fast, not like the usual begrudging trudge of his daughter. Doure practically bounced into the kitchen.

"Eggs and bacon please Winston!" she beamed at the domestic drone.

"Immediately Miss Doure." it replied in its robotic tone. Within seconds the food was frying on the big grill. Yverens had treated the family to the old-fashioned cooking device. Whilst most homes used a rad-heater Yverens always preferred his food cooked on the big old fashioned skillet. It wasn't energy efficient, it wasn't fast, it wasn't healthy but it sure made food tasty.

"Someones happy" Yverens said whilst thinking "For a change!"

"I made a friend yesterday." Doure beamed.

"Don't be a boy! Don't be a boy!" Yverens repeated in his head whilst smiling and looking interested.

"She's called Vysena and she's awesome!"

Yverens resisted breathing an exaggerated sigh of relief.

"She's an orphan. She said her family was killed but didn't go into details. She was rescued by the Sisters and is on her own. Its really sad. She lives downtown and works in a shop to pay her rent. She wants a proper education and is willing to work for it! Isn't that amazing."

Yverens nodded and smiled but was inwardly worried. This girl sounded damaged goods. The Domestic Drone placed Doure's eggs and bacon in front of her and retreated back to the skillet to clean it.

"We're going to the mall after college so no need to pick me up!" she continued between mouthfuls of food.

"I'll pick you up there if you'd like." he offered wanting to get a look at this new friend.

Doure nodded with a mouth full of food.

Yverens heard more footsteps behind. He twisted to see his wife enter with a robe wrapped around her. The look she gave him left him in no doubt he was still in the dog-house. She moved to the worktop and switched on the coffee maker. She was the only one of the three who drank coffee. Yverens marveled how even the domestic drone knew not to speak when she was in this mood. It had quietly retreated to its corner waiting to clear the plates. It was his fault and he knew it. When she turned down his advances last night for about the 60th night in a row he'd said some things he regretted. However he wasn't going to try an apologize with Doure there. He'd wait until she'd left for college and then say sorry.


The sun was starting to dip and the yellow-green of the Gallente nebula was starting to take over from the blue sky. Yverens was sat in his hover car at the mall pickup bay. Whilst he waited he thought back to earlier. He'd apologised to Slens but she wasn't happy. She put the blame on him saying the move planet-side and his pushing was to blame for her lack of interest and mood swings. They had sorted it out but there was still an air of tension. As the sun set and the night sky took over he could see the station in orbit. He turned the radio up as the jingle for the hourly news played.

"CONCORD has again protested to both the Federation and the State regarding the use of Cloned Mercenaries in the ongoing hostilities in the Black Rise Region. State Protectorate and Federal Defense Union troops have been clashing in Hasmijaala with orbital support from capsuleers. A mis-targetted orbital bombardment wiped out the settledment of Veirares with 50 colonists reported killed."

He glanced across to the exit and saw Doure walking towards him with another girl. Vysena he presumed. He quickly assessed her and wasn't massively happy with what he saw. They looked the same age. The other girl was much more fashionable albeit in a darker sense. Her glossy black hair fell to her shoulders. The short black top revealed a taut stomach. The skirt was also short and the knee-high boots sported a silver spiked heel. She looked trouble, beautiful yes, but certainly trouble. He lowered the window as they approached.

"Hi daddy!" his daughter greeted. She only ever used the word 'Daddy' when she wanted something.

"Is it OK to give Vysena a lift home?"

He glanced back at the girl who smiled. It wasn't a sweet smile, it was, if he had to name it, seductive. He felt he had no choice with her there listening and simply nodded. If nothing else he'd get to know a bit more about her. Find out if he really needed to be worried

"Shotgun!" Vysena shouted and ran around the car and jumped in the passenger seat. Doure 

"Where we going?" he asked as he pulled out into the light traffic.

"Downtown. District 12."

Yverens nodded and tried not to react. That was not a good area. Whilst he wouldn't term it either slums or ghetto, it wasn't many steps up the ladder from there. Low-cost run down hab-blocks serving the budget end of the market.

"So Doure said you were once an egger agent!" Vysena said.

Yverens looked in the rearview mirror at his daughter who just shrugged.

"Everyone knows dad. Don't worry about it."

However Yverens did worry. He tried to keep his previous life discreet. In the course of a fifteen year career as an agent millions had probably died from the missions he passed to the Capsuleers.

"I think that's cool! Making the cluster a safer place and all that." Vysena continued "Hey these seats are fantastic!" she said stretching out.

Yverens glanced at the girl. Her long legs were bare and smooth. The exposed stomach was flat with a green-stoned gold ring in her bellybutton. He looked higher, the vehicles cooling was certainly having an effect on her. He snapped his vision back to the road. Had he seriously just been eying up his daughter's new friend's breasts? He felt disgusted and for the rest of the journey kept his eyes firmly on the road.

The ride into District 12 took 20 minutes. Yverens watched as the neighborhoods became more and more run down. Gallente styling giving way to a more Caldari design approach. Functional and cheap. They were in the shadow of the space elevator now being so close to the industrial area. The massive structure dominated the view to his left.

Finally Vysena pointed out an old hab-block on a busy intersection. Yverens pulled up at the kerb. Vysena climbed out and turned and leaned back into the cab.

"Thanks for the lift Mr Catelnau . I really appreciate it. See you tomorrow Doure!"

Yverens didn't really hear as he was transfixed by her gaping top giving him a full view of her chest. Was she doing this on purpose? His daughter appeared and jumped in the front seat.

"What do you think?" she asked excitedly.

"What?" the question caught him by surprise.

"To Vysena. Isn't she great?"

"Erm, yeah. Bit of a bad neighborhood." Yverens stated as they drove off.

"Yeah but its all she can afford. The Sisters of Eve give them some cash when they leave but she's totally on her own. She says she works in a shop uptown part-time. She's got it hard. Studying and having to pay her own way." Doure said wistfully as they headed home.

Yverens was torn. The girl was having a very positive effect on his daughter. However, he couldn't shake and uneasy feeling that the girl was trouble.

To be continued...