Thursday, 30 June 2011

Journal: YC113.06.30

I'm a religious man myself, but there are times when it strikes me just how strange and totally alien to my own faith the Amarrian religion is.

In Uskyounto, for example, we wouldn't keep the skeleton of a holy man on display for four hundred years as a holy relic.

Saint Shemek the Reclaimer, a man who purportedly converted the population of a whole world to Amarr with one divinely powerful speech. His body - or at least, some of it - is on display in a chapel reliquary in Dam-Torsad, for the faithful to visit and be inspired by.

Except that some of the faithful were inspired to steal the skeleton and take it with them on pilgrimages of Reclamation, the better to grant some divine spark to aid in their cause or... whatever. Zealot thinking.

His left hand is on my desk right now. The Theology Council has issued a one million ISK bounty per bone on this holy man's remains, and I have a whole twenty-six of them. The third distal phalanx turns out to be a very convincing fake - When I mentioned this to the cleric at the reliquary chapel she told me that Shemek was a spaceshipyard worker before he became a preacher, lost the tip of his left ring finger in a workplace accident, and that he wore a prosthetic for the rest of his life. When they came to display the skeleton, a replica bone was made because people were so used to seeing him with an apparently full complement of intact fingertips. Still, the bounty's valid for the fake fingertip too, to keep up appearances. In fact, they take the news that the bone is a replica to be evidence that I really do have Shemek's hand.

The simple wooden box that carries this artefact was wedged behind a cold air duct under the deck plating of my hangar, right underneath the drone docking and charging platform, the one part of the whole hangar not able to be reconfigured or have cargo stacked on it.

All because mine is hangar twenty-seven, and they have twenty-seven (or so they think) of the saint's bones with them. bones which I have confiscated and intend to return to the Empire's keeping. My pilgrims didn't take the news well. In fact, they're having to be guarded every second of the day because the moment they think they're not being watched, they attempt to take their lives.

They're insane, clearly. I've contacted a religious institution in the Empire that specialises in rehabilitating the suicidally faithful.

Doesn't feel right taking the money for this thing, though. So there's going to be a series of anonymous (and very large) donations to charities in the Republic looking to help new immigrants out of poverty.

Seems only fair that the Saint of Reclaimers should contribute something to the well-being of the emancipated. I like the irony of that.

Still need to figure out which of my staff were dumb enough to let them in and fire them though. So, mystery not quite fully resolved yet.

Save. End.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Journal: YC113.06.28

The report on the incident involving my Amarrian "guests" has raised more questions than it answers.

item one:  psych profiling and hiring standards mean that none of the people in a position to grant them admittance to the hangar would do so with intent to cause them harm. Some of the staff are former slaves and as such thoroughly opposed to Amarr (the religion), but all of them are level-headed enough not to go throwing somebody into a meat grinder just for their beliefs.

Item two: No exploitable security hole has been found by the investigation team. And if the investigators didn't find one, then there almost certainly isn't one and even if there were, something evading the ability of a team of security consultants to detect would be leagues beyond anything a random batch of civilians could take advantage of.

Item three: the incident took place during a scheduled five-day inspection of the tri-skin bulkhead welds, the only occasion when the hangar is pressurised, as scheduled by station engineering and liaised with my quartermaster and executive officer. all above board and correct.

In light of the above, therefore, it is the considered opinion of the report that the pilgrims were allowed access to the hangar without intent to cause them harm, and that a minimum of four security personnel were involved in granting said permission. This despite the training all the guards receive to highlight the exact lethal dangers of the hangar facility and why letting anybody in while it's in use is a Bad Idea.

None of which makes any sense.

It makes even less sense when I came to deposit three hundred and fifty thousand cubic meters of freighter cargo this evening, and was promptly stopped from doing so by the newly-installed safety overrides.

Turns out the twelve pilgrims who were sufficiently well to leave medical today went straight back there. They became violent when I had them removed. Spast, it's almost like they WANT to get killed.

Or like there's something in there they value more than their own lives.


Save. End.

Sunday, 26 June 2011

Journal: YC113.06.27

They're Amarrian. Pilgrims, in the Republic on a religious mission of Reclamation. Not a good way to make yourself popular in Minmatar territory.

Which immediately makes me suspicious that there's more going on here than simple negligence. I employ a lot of Minmatar personnel, many of them former slaves.

I can just imagine being too far from home, surrounded by people who are at best cold, and at worst openly hostile. Being turned away from every hotel and apartment block in every station, probably turfed off every station in short order. And then somebody offers a glimmer of light among all the unrelenting cruelty. "I know somewhere secure you can sleep the night. Our little secret."

It's a miracle none of them are dead. All of them have been exposed to chemical, radiological and xenobacterial hazards and are suffering for it. One of them is going to need weeks of cell regen and months of rehabilitation and physiotherapy before he can walk again.

And frankly, all of them look malnourished, dehydrated and unhealthy, like they've not seen a doctor in years. Which is why they're being treated by medical staff off my ships.

Maybe I can be their real glimmer of light.


A Capsuleer.

I'd laugh, if it was funny.

Save. End.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Journal: YC113.06.26

Somebody turned up in my Gulfonodi hangar. Crushed by one of the cargo drones. From what I understand station medical have given up on the victim's legs, and think they have a 50% shot of saving the damaged arm. I've already informed them that I'll be picking up all medical expenses incurred up to and including full cellular regeneration and limb cloning.

I'm launching a review. There shouldn't have been anyone in there, it's full of ammunition and hazardous industrial materials, not to mention ten-ton cargo drones moving stuff around without any safety systems in place. The whole thing should be locked down and empty.

But the first impressions I'm getting suggest that our victim wasn't alone in there. Which means that somebody on my staff is going to be standing in front of my desk very soon, facing a lot of very cutting questions.

Questions like "Why the bloody hell weren't you doing your damn job?"

Save. End.

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Journal: YC113.06.23

"I really just want him to ... not come near me. Near the twins. Ever again." Cia said.

It's a simple request. But acceding to it means that Byre wins. If I let this go, I'm beaten, and I'm an oathbreaker.

So. A beaten oathbreaker I have become.

It seems like that should feel more wrong, somehow.

Save. End.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Journal: YC113.06.21

My face, my hand, my voice, threatening the babies.

Not me. Not my actions. But my fault. My failure.

Death's too good for him.

Byre will THANK me when I finally let him die.

Save. End.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Journal: 113.06.14

"Once burned twice shy"?

Hardly. Seems like some people can't resist sticking their hand in the fire again, see if it hurts as much the second time round.

Save. End.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Journal: 113.06.12

Maybe we look at so-called "Capsuleer Dementia" all wrong. Maybe we have it pretty much backwards.

It's true, a lot - I daresay all - pod pilots are a little wrong upstairs. Sociopathic disregard for human life, emotional detachment, emotional dependency, a cavalier attitude towards life and limb. I love Cia like a sister but bless her she's not right in the head. 

And me, of course. Me with that evil black demon in my head just waiting for the moment when my guard's down, where something takes me back, where it can make me remember.

"Survivor's guilt". Hah! now there's a term made up by somebody who didn't have any experience of it, who don't know what it's like from the inside. The entire point is that you DIDN'T survive. People die a little bit when the souls around them are put out like candles drowning under the tide, that's normal. But I had half of my soul taken from me.

What do you call it when the other half of you, the person who made you a complete and single being with two bodies, is killed and you're not there to die with her? "Survivor's guilt"? Taisaanat kafurui siirtiuuliku!

I call it the wound that I don't think will ever really heal, even if I live for a thousand years.

even if they give you a nice helpful doctor who's there to try and help and who's understanding and just want to help you get through this, Verin. For them, for yourself, and for the corporation."


 ...I know that it's not a symptom of pod use to be that way. I think... maybe it's a prerequisite.

Save. End.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Journal: 113.06.10

Further to my last... there are also occasions where I do something routine - some utterly mundane part of my day-to-day - and then sit back awestruck by the magnitude of it.

Today, I took receipt of one hundred tech two large shield extenders from the manufacturing array, and installed another hundred.

A comfortably well-off middle-class family in any of the four empires will earn, either in Megacorp Scrip, Federal Sterling, Republic Dollars or Imperial Monarchs, only a handful of ISK a year. double figures, maybe triple towards the top end of the scale. Some of the poorest people in the world won't even manage double figures in a year.

A Large Shield Extender II is worth six hundred and fifty thousand at current market price. six figures. three orders of magnitude more money per module than most people will earn in a hard-working year.

I just built a hundred of them. So that's sixty-five million. eight figures. Five orders of magnitude.

I already had a hundred and fifty in storage ready for the next sell batch. so we're up to one hundred and sixty-two million five hundred thousand Interstellar Kredits. Nine figures. six orders of magnitude.

I have three hundred and eighty still to build. four hundred and nine million five hundred thousand ISK gross profit. about 55% of which is net profit. So, two hundred and twenty five million two-twenty-five thousand-ish. with a margin of error of about... five percent or so.

Per week.

I acquired all of this staggering wealth by... pressing a few buttons. Took me about five minutes for each batch, if that. Plus the trade run to buy the component parts and to sell the previous batch. maybe comes to an hour's work total to make several million times what a hard-working dirtsider might earn in a year.

And several hundred times what I myself was earning this time five years ago, when I was just starting out.

Save. End.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Journal: 113.06.02

Some days - infrequently - the sheer incredible scale of... of... of everything hits me in the face.

It's humbling, every time. How the hell did I make this happen?

Save. End.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Journal: 113.06.01

I'd previously thought of the "loyalty points" in-house credit offered by most corporations as something to hoard and save up until you can get something big and imposing like a navy-issue Raven blueprint.

Turns out that actually, you can make much more money by redeeming the ostensibly lower-value offers, like hardwires and enhanced ammunition. sixty thousand navy - issue cruise missiles and twelve of the new Inherent Implants 'Squire' PG3 range from CONCORD works out to about three hundred and fifteen million ISK gross profit, and about two hundred fifty million net, and that's with a fraction of the loyalty points. If I redeemed a navy battleship's worth of points in smaller stuff, the resulting profit would be far, FAR bigger.

And the nice thing is that, while the market's pretty well populated with navy cruise missiles, I didn't find a single other person selling those PG3s anywhere in highsec Republic, Federation or State space.   Not even in Jita.

It's not all going to shift overnight, but I'm going to be a damn sight richer when it has.

Save. End.