My engines screaming, the interface with my Rifter frigate filled my senses with complaint as I pushed and pushed them. Fourty-four Warp jumps, long ones, forming and collapsing warp bubbles, draining on both the ship and the pilot within.
The ship had reason to complain, I was being jumpy and skittish, as much as I've proven a capable pilot, I've never allowed myself to dive headfirst into nullsec before, not without an escort, or atleast a friend waiting for me.
As soon as I crossed into low security space I became frantic, and it might have saved my life. Out here you don't need a corporate sanctioned war target for a straight out fight, everyone will try with you. I constantly willed my ship into warp with tracking warnings flashing through my neural interface.
Pirates, corporate enemies, and some people who simply want to brag about killing an immortal. I dodged them all. This was not my element, and people who were used to this space always forgot to mention things that they assumed were common knowledge. I don't know if it's conceit or a sick joke, but they will mock you a thousand times before they will give you the golden rules of survival.
I almost head straight into a warp disruption bubble, I have no Idea how they work. I quickly change direction as yet more target alerts pulse in my head. I'm pretty sure I'm going to dock with a migraine if I make it to my destination at all. But I'm in null-sec now.
The frontier of the known world. Where the fingers of the major empires haven't the resources to stretch, but the infinite lifespan and opportunism of the Capsuleers do.
The Rifter complains less now, as each jump is a long silent glide at warp, and my sensors find fewer and fewer people in local. After all the horror stories I'd found that one of the truths was right, low-sec space is far far scarier than null-secs quiet tranquility. I just became more nervous, one thing I've learned is that complacency wins you a capsule flight home.
But now I was almost to my destination, and in welcome my sensors picked up contact after contact, all the blue of a friend and even in my interfaced state I felt my near lifeless bodies shoulders sag with relief.
Then there it was, a silver monolith shooting up, a homage to the skyscrapers planetside who tried to pierce the skies. It filled the view of my cam drones and towered like a spear into the void above my Rifter, filling me with awe as I emerged out of my capsule to gaze upon it from my cockpit. My human eyes could see it with less clarity, but this just made the sight more humbling.
I sent the docking signal to the neon blue and silver monument. And it welcomed my small craft in, a new home from which I could learn to fight. Not just other pilots but the true foes, the uncontrolled and unlimited Capsuleers of the free stars...