Monday, March 22, 2010

My Private War, Part I

I feel the embrace of the Universe Entire as a pitch-black swaddling shroud. It's a feeling of incredible power, as if all time and space were one great cynosural field, calling out to me to reach out and go to any point I care to choose in its infinite expanse. A host of long-forgotten names pass through my awareness as potential destinations: Soekheviti, Athra, Epsilon Eridani, the Great Attractor.

There is an infernal paradox to this awareness of omnipresence: In a cosmos in which I can travel anywhere, infinite though it may be, I can go nowhere. To see all that is or can be, as I am now,  is to know that choice and action are pointless. There must be more than this, but this strange awareness tells me there is not!

Just before it seems this Holy Boredom will destroy me utterly, it begins to pass. I reach out with my awareness, once again returned to the here and now, to take stock of things. Where am I?

I am presently coasting from stargate to stargate through the Great Wildlands region in Asher, a Pilgrim-class force recon vessel. The covert ops cloaking device is engaged, masking my presence to all observers in the solar system, yet there is no one else in system to see me. In fact, as I become more lucid and some of my memories return, I realize that I haven't seen another soul in many, many jumps.

My Neocom shows eight new messages. Seven of them are from Amber Macx and are permutations of "Where the hell are you?" and "What on earth are you doing?" The eighth is a killmail, recording a recent engagement with a capsuleer-piloted Vagabond. The kill seems somehow familiar, but I have no specific memory of it. Was it a dream? No. Cargo manifests show that the loot from this kill is in my possession.

I'm disturbed that I could have been in a trance during a combat engagement, but I can't say that I'm displeased by the results. From the looks of it, Asher once again proved the two Laws of the Pilgrim: 1) If a Pilgrim uncloaks, its mark will die (now, if the Pilgrim is uncloaked, that's another matter); 2) one-on-one, the Pilgrim can roast virtually any turreted ship in the cluster.

So much for my ship; what's wrong with me? How did I come to be out here, roaming southern New Eden from Querious to Catch to Great Wildlands? I need to retrace my steps, but first, I need to make my way through nullsec back home to Gamis, Derelik. When I'm home, I'll have a check-up with an autodoc.

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