Death Rattle

In his mind he could see the Sun burning brightly nearby, his senses protected by the shielding deep within the confines of ship, shield, electronics, fluids and pod.  But he knew, as few humans could, the power of that star.  The deadly radiation spewing forth from its hellish surface.  No effect on the man or the demi-god capsuleer.  

But it played hell with his scanner.

The Enyo was a last -minute choice when he undocked and he wasn't comfortable with the ship.  HIs mind played across the interior, trying to remember why he'd forgone the usual fittings for something more untraditional.  The usual reasons.  His Father had been a tinkerer and Rixx shared that dna, he couldn't stop himself.  Even if it meant moments like this, unsure and fighting to be right.

The scanner dinged in his head.  Static from the surrounding radiation poured through, but the filters held firm.  So far.  The echo was faint, but he was certain the star screams held a Jaguar.  Trying to hide from me.  It won't work.

The nimble little ship turned towards the star and the left side of the ship dropped a few thousand degrees.  He could feel the shaking of the warp engines even within his pod and his fingers virtually hovered over the weapons controls.  In warp he commanded them to reload to more appropriate ammunition.  Ten seconds.  More than enough time.

The scanner had lied and his instincts were wrong by about 50 clicks.  The Jag was there alright, but to far to engage.  It was already aligned and he knew exactly where it was going.  The buzz in his ear meant local flight numbers had just increased and sure enough another pilot had just activated the Gate.  A moment later and the Concord beacon showed it as another neutral, but not just any neutral, this one was someone known to him.  Just yesterday he'd helped this pilot bring down a missioner, not long ago this pilot had thought about joining his Corp.  He parted his mind and concentrated on the target.

This would be his fatal mistake.

The warp trail was clear and sure enough the Jag had warped directly to where he thought they would.  Already aligned his Enyo burped back into warp, this time he'd guessed right, this time he'd catch the damn thing and kill it.

His heart started pounding in his chest and he knew he'd be right.  Bam, right on target.  His fingers virtually danced across the controls and boom, they were dancing.  The Jag had the advantage at first of course, this was expected.  Let me get closer and then we'll see.  The Enyo rattled under the bullets of the enemy ship and already Rixx was cursing himself for his lack of an Armor Repairer, already he was making mental notes to stop trying out new fits, already he was working out the changes he'd make next time, already he was counting on victory.  He always did.

The tide of battle was turning already, just a little closer and the Jag would really start to feel his Blasters.  Already bits and pieces of the damn Minmatar ship were sailing off into space.  The tide turned then, but in unexpected ways.  The Rifter came down out of the sun, the scanner blind to it's arrival, already its guns adding to the already desperate armor damage he was taking.  Rixx smiled in his pod and he knew his little ship was doomed.  Well done he thought, well done indeed.  The little bitch had used our familiarity against me.  He'd remember this moment, but for now he swung his ship around towards the nearest Gate.  He might lose the Enyo, and so what the fitting sucked after all, but he wouldn't give them the benefit of his pod.

He broadcasted good fight over the local channel and jumped back through the Gate.