The ink wasn’t even dry on the contract before I was given a tasking. The Praxis Initiative, some ‘ruddy good chaps’ with the Gentleman’s Agreement alliance had been one of the ‘short-list’ corporations I was looking at, were looking for a few good pilots to aid in pacification actions in and around the Fountain Region. Conversations I’d had with them were generally positive; and I made it abundantly clear, I was a Widow pilot first and foremost. I received high level assurances that I would be more than welcome.
A covert cyno pilot, a young Matar nomad named Kyreana was partnered with me to act as my scout and jump beacon generator. After a rendezvous in the Zinkon system, we discussed our routing. The Ertoo jump point would have been the faster run, but we decided on the ‘long way’ through Hophib as being more secure given the degree of pirate activity reported in the area. I’ll admit to some hesitancy; but the 4-dimensional tensor math required to calculate the first jump helped take the edge off. The jump points she provided me were secure, and in no time at all I found myself located in the Wyvern constellation. I topped up Kyr’s supply of Liquid Ozone and began perusing the local market since I’d expended about half my onboard supply of N-14 Isotopes.

Once I got resupplied and settled in, I started volunteering to join Ops Groups. Rapid-response gate camp to catch a a hostile lingering in the region? “Don’t bring the Widow, this could be bait” Intercepting an enemy jump freighter attempting to evacuate components of a POS? “Too tempting a target, they might hot-drop you.” Offering to set up a deployable warp-disruptor bubble and lurk in cloak nearby for tempting targets? “Black Ops aren’t supposed to be combat ships.”
Surely if not for my five torpedo launchers or the most powerful ECM system in New Eden, they must have hired me for the CJPG? A perusal of the ships being flown by my erstwhile corporation mates showed a decided dearth of covert-operations type craft. Several other pilots stated they were Black-Ops certified, however.
I made noises about perhaps training to fly the Rhea class Jump Freighter; a solid Caldari design, even if a brief flirt with the Charon hull had been screamingly frustrating. “That’d be great”. No mention of a shipyard facility planned, and while I had some funds reserved, a lumbering paving stone of a ship that cost in excess of nine times the price of my Widow far exceeded my budgetary means.

One begins to wonder why they’d recruit a declared specialist when they have no apparent intention to utilize them. Patience, however, is necessary when a group is going through an abrupt change like the occupation of two constellations. Time will tell if this was the right move. What are a few months to an immortal?

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