A Fortune Missed
The Tower Bar in the Angel Cartel’s Litom outpost was no longer empty. After feeling that our assets were secured, joypunk and I had retired to our separate quarters for some much-needed rest. While capsuleers rarely slept, their brains were as much machine as they were organic material, a shower and a couple of hours of no one trying to kill you could do wonders for the psyche. We had agreed to meet back at the Tower Bar to sample some of the local fare 3 hours after we finished our bottle of Litomerae.
We were surprised to find that the Tower Bar was now filled to capacity with crew members wearing Imperium Technologies colors. “I’ve never seen this many in one place…” joypunk was warily eyeing a Corporal she’d recognized from the ITS Manfred’s Regard, a Falcon class Force Recon cruiser and Wierd Beard’s flag ship. His crews were notoriously raucous during down-time, and notoriously ruthless during a fight. It led to many of us questioning their overall stability but there was no questioning their prowess in both partying and fighting. As one of the best crews in the fleet they were also given more leeway during downtime, almost as much as the capsuleers themselves received. It wouldn’t be surprising to see any of them as capsuleers themselves within the next few years, if they could survive that long.
Making our way to the quietest part of the capsuleer lounge, we found that Jarhead, Daz and Wierd Beard, along with all of their crews and handlers, had joined us in Litom as a waypoint to wherever we were eventually headed next. Unfortunately, as we approached, no pleasantries were exchanged. As odd as it seemed, we soon discovered why.
“I don’t care about your reasons, going to the Angel Cartel was a horribly stupid decision. What, you couldn’t find somewhere more out of the way? Like maybe the ass end of Jovian space?”
Pygon was obviously unhappy, it was hard to tell if it was with his management team, the situation, or something else. Every one of the present management team was trying desperately to figure out which it was before stepping further into the fray. “Did you think we wouldn’t be able to secure safe passage?” “Wouldn’t be the first time, no reflection on you or us, just a reflection on reality.” Wierd Beard could almost always diffuse a situation, as such everyone generally gave him a little wider berth with his comments during a tense moment. Truthfully, what he was saying was well applied, as most of us had been around as long as capsuleer technology had existed, and we’d seen the worst of the worst situations. Unfortunately, in New Eden, the worst has a way of becoming normal and you react to every situation as if the worst is happening. It’s the only way to keep your crew alive.
Pygon sighed, took a deep breath and readdressed his management team. “Fine, you’re right. I’m glad you guys got everything out safely, and that’s what matters. Here’s the thing, we have a place to go, we know how to get there. Unfortunately, apparently someone… likely Benju or his team… emptied the alliance war chest accounts during the confusion over the last few days. So the payout we had been expecting for participating in the war isn’t coming.” “You’re saying we’re walking out of all this with nothing!?” Natron was apparently in Pygon’s quarters back in RNF-YH. “I wouldn’t say ‘nothing’…” Latch strutted confidently into Pygon’s quarters behind them. “You’re crazy if you think we’re going to enter, and leave, a triple coup without walking away with something.” “Is ‘something’ enough to get us moving to wherever the hell we’re going?” Daz wasn’t going to waste a lot of time with pleasantries, he was obviously agitated and had no problem showing the emotion we were all feeling. “Oh, definitely.” Latch grinned.