I've recently resolved to go back to a more pro-active style of hunting. The trapdoor spider approach, whilst highly amusing when it works, was destroying my soul with the endless hours of waiting. I'm going to pretend that I've got better shit to do, OK?
After a long day at the office and under a searing sun I was pretty shagged when I slumped into my plush leather captain's chair last week. I was sure some time spent in the service of Bob would rejuvenate me, so I got to exploring the chain. I had a couple of transient connections which may have scored me a Heron at a Relic site had I been about a minute faster, but I'm really after more interesting prey than that, so I return to my home system and just as I'm about to switch to another character I notice a new signature has populated my scan window. I quickly scan it down to find a K162 connection to a C3. The spawning mechanic being what it is, there's no way for me to know if it was a player jumping the hole that spawned it or if it was a chance based spawn, I'm certainly hoping it's the latter and there is nothing on D-Scan to indicate I have a visitor. So I jump through and D-Scan the new system to reveal an engaging discovery. Lots of Sleeper wrecks, a mobile tractor unit and two Rattlesnakes. However, there is an active force field also.
I find the Rattlesnakes quickly and as I land on grid with them in my Astero they are just finishing the site and both are warping back to the safety of their POS. It's possible they spotted me jump in, but there are very few signatures on scan so I think they may be under the impression that they have no open entries. A quick look at their killboard and my eyes widen; they've lost three Rattlesnakes in the last month fitted with Dead Space active shield boosters, shield boost amplifiers and A-Type Adaptive Invulnerability fields, worth over 700 million ISK on their own. The planet they warped to has only one moon, so I warp in on it at range to monitor their movements. It's about now that it all went horribly wrong. As luck would have it, warping in at 100 km's from my angle of approach got my Astero de-cloaked by the force field. They've spotted me for sure. I warp off and cloak up, cursing my bad luck and apologising to those in comms that I was rallying for the intercept.
To my amazement, even after salvaging the site they had just finished, they started up again. So once again the fleet is forming up, arriving at the HiSec connection as they finish the site. Next time they go out, we strike.
Only they didn't go out again. For whatever reason, they got suddenly gun shy. One Rattlesnake stayed camped in the POS whilst a Helios and Astero buzzed about their chain, never spotting our fleet but not resuming normal activities either. After an hour of this we call off the hunt and I resolve to camp the system with my scout until suitable prey turns up again.
What followed was a week of frustration. For days they'd barely log in at all and when they did, just idle at POS for a while before logging off. I was really starting to regret this idea all together when finally one of their pilots logs in already piloting a Kronos and immediately leaves the POS to go kill some sleepers without checking system at all. I'm not sure if he's brave or stupid, but I'm betting on the latter. My mains are 30+ jumps away so I put the call out in a shared intel channel only to discover my only entry is in the middle of butt fuck nowhere and they are all the best part of thirty jumps away too. With my quarry only having three combat sites to run, we're never going to get there in time. So I silently watch in my Astero and say a little prayer to Bob for a better connection next time.
Some days later, having succumbed to boredom and revealing myself by blowing up an Astero and an Epithal of theirs I was ready to give up on my camp. So I log in, cloak and hit D-Scan expecting nothing out of the ordinary. Suddenly my watch list pings, it's the Marauder pilot again! The connection to K-Space is better now and I put out the call as I arrive at their POS and see the Kronos warp off to a combat site. He's got seven to grind through, we've got time. The fleet comes together as he's salvaging the first site, we're ready to pounce the moment he gets back into the Kronos and starts on site two. As if knowing that, he does absolutely nothing, switching from Noctis to Velator, logging off, logging on some PI alts, logging on again and finally, logging off.
I table flipped. Fuck this! I had a job to go to anyway so, once again, I apologise to my fleet members and go to work. For the record, I had a ripper day and made many PLEX worth of human monies =]. Upon logging into Eve after work I am immediately hailed by Jack Haamilton and linked the following kill mail. The credit stealing bastards! ;)
Op success. Thank Bob that's over.