After many hours of total shutdown, and regular reports with Captain Barsaf, they told me they had perfomed a reset of all the major systems, and replaced most of the burnt out computer cores. They were going to perform a staggered restart of the systems.
I thanked him profusely, and warned him that there were about 400+ hostiles in the system- it was highly likely we wouldn’t get out of this with the ‘pest intact. I told him if I put the ship into a ‘situation’, to abandon ship- get him and his crew safe- after all their hard work to get us going again, I didn’t want to throw their lives away. After some persuading, he reluctantly agreed.
The systems came back one by one- central cluster, propulsion… all was in the green. I saw our armour damage had repaired- in our down time, I had instructed nano-bots to repair what they could. The process was very much slower than using a module, but I had no local repairer fitted, and let’s face it, I had plenty of time.
The ship’s warp engines sucked power from the capacitor hungrily as they followed their programming to warp us back to the last position we were at before we shut down. I held my breath…. as we warped to the E-O gate, and smack dab into a BoB camp. I sighed internally (sighing externally would’ve been a very bad idea), and told the crew to abandon ship. I turned the ship around to align to a distant planet, and engaged MWD to get me clear of the disruptor bubbles. It wouldn’t save my ship, but it may give my pod a chance.
My HUD flashed me warnings that the escape pods were being launched- I over-rode the warning and it shut off. At least they were close to a gate and refuge. I’d see them again.
I had been locked onto by many ships, and was completely jammed. Frustrated that I couldn’t do anything, I launched my light drones, maybe they’d mildly irritate someone before they got vapourised. In a final act of spite, I set my guns and modules to overheat and hopefully destroy themselves. Petty, yes. Satisfying? Very.
Inevitably, the Tempest blew asunder. The Concord record of it’s demise was incomplete, there were so many pilots who had shot at me, the details were truncated of what modules dropped. No big deal either way.
My pod spat out into space, and as I was clear of the bubbles, I got out of there pronto before anone could lock me. After making a few safe mid-spots, I wanted to get near to Taisy gate (which aside from E-O gate was the only other gate which led anywhere other than into a loop back). Unfortunately, Taisy gate was one of those objects that wasn’t near a planet, moon, belt or anything that could be warped to. Fortunately for me I had made a 300km bookmark from the Taisy gate in times past, so I warped to that at a 100km to assess the situation. As I expected, it was large anchor bubbled. If I was in a small ship with MWD I may have gone for it, but my pod would stand no chance. I warped to a safe spot and powered down. I would bide my time.
2 days later, the pod was starting to close in on me. It was the longest time I’d spent in a pod. Although the pod fluid was automatically cleaned and recycled, it felt dirty. Physically I felt comfortable, but I longed to stretch my legs and breathe the fresh (recycled) clean (recycled) air of a station. I had been monitoring comms as I had been pretty bored. Looks like KIA had sustained heavy losses, which was no huge surprise given the situation. And I was the only one left in here. I powered up the pod from time to time to check out the gates, but BoB maintained a solid presence on the gates. It was the anchored bubbles that were the issue.
Clearly they were going nowhere soon, and I wasn’t about to throw myselves upon them. I decided to self destruct the pod. I made sure my cerebral pattern was uploaded and initiated self-destruct. I hated waking up in a cloning vat, the disorientation and sickness passed soon but wasn’t very appealing.
You have initiated self-destruct. Your ship will be destroyed in 2 minutes
Two minutes. Two long minutes. I hoped the crew had got on-board the E-O gate OK. My mind wandered. I had quite liked this clone, spent a lot of time in it. It had a scar on it’s thumb where I’d cut myself on a sharp piece of-
Your ship self- destructs
Darkness. Suffocating. My pod was malfunctioning, oh god oh-
“Welcome back sir” a smiling tech said. His head swam into view above me, and I felt myself being rubbed by something- it felt peculiar. I sat up on my elbows groggily as my eyes focused, and watched the tech completing his towelling down of my new body, leaving smears of clone vat fluid.
“You’re in TDE station, sir” he reminded me, just in case I had no idea. Good job really, as I didn’t. “Ah, yes, Brutor” he tailed off, mumbling to himself as he rummaged in a cupboard. The room was large, with a row of clone vats up one side, a row of shower stalls on the other side, and recovery couches like the one i was on, in the middle section. The Tech was a young Gallentean, smartly dressed. He looked vaguely familiar to me, but I couldn’t place him.
He made a pleased noise, and came back to me holding a small box. “There you go sir. Showers are over there, and fresh towels inside. Any problems, let me know, my office is over there.” He indicated a door to a windowless office. He left me and went into the office.
I thanked his departing figure, swung my legs over the side, and looked at my thumb. No scar. I felt the back of my head- no implants either. Meh. Curiously, I opened the plain box he had handed me, and shook out the contents. A smart pair of Brutor sunglasses plopped out into my lap. I chuckled- never had those given to me in a clone centre before. Nice touch.