Monday, 15 June 2015

The Sisters of EVE Missions Part 4: Drone Hive

OK now this is where it got a bit weird. I signed up for these missions with the Sisters of EVE in the Tristan on the premise that being in a Gallente ship in Gallente territory would afford some anonymity, which was fine and working really well up until Delphine Xarasier asked me to go to the Caldari Border Zone and meet an ally of hers - Imuri Asaka - about following up the Rogue Drone Swarm theory.

So this time I would be an Amarrian - a Caldari ally - but I'm showing up at a 100%-Caldari station in Caldari space, in a Gallente ship.

Hassle from pod tech grunts was virtually guaranteed over this...

The trip over to Hatakani in The Citadel was enjoyable. I found another capsuleer corpse out there so I scooped it up and added it to my growing collection of biomass. What I'm going to do with it, I have absolutely no idea:

When I got to Hatakani I'm sure there was a delay while my docking request was processed...

Things got very interesting and finally got violent in this 'chapter'. I investigated reports of a Drone Hive right here in the Hatakani system. I saw one of these very early on in my capsuleer career back in Kor-Azor, but the significance of it was lost on me. Not this time. The Hive I found here was enormous. Disturbing even.

I flew across the face of it, just a few hundred metres away, like I was taunting it to awaken and do something about me. At this distance there was an EM interference going on which manifested over the audio channel as a dissonant sonic mashup that was haunting, hypnotic and terrifying - addictive even. I lingered and orbited the structure several times, just listening to this thing 'speak' of its unfocused anger, rage, misunderstanding and resentment. The chaos of the structure itself: built by machine minds (that were originally spawned by Gallente researchers) but seemingly at random with no clear design: organic even. From a distance it looks exactly like a gigantic virus or a tumour - a representation of the chaos of the Rogue Drone mind itself.

Do the drones really just want to be left alone? Do they really want to eradicate humanity? Is their aggression merely a pre-emptive response to ours?
The Caldari Navy were present, but preferred to keep a distance. Typical...

This thing (below) was the most disturbing structure of all. A small rock, designated on Overview as 'Infested' and sprouting cables as if its interior has been cyber-terraformed and given sentience, surrounded by segmented and free-floating drone structures that gave this rock the appearance of being an altar, a sacred artefact; perhaps this was the true heart of the Drone Hive.

I flew right through the centre of the massive Hive structure and it completely ignored me, even though I'd just killed every Rogue Drone in the vicinity with my own pet swarm of Hobgoblins.

The Amarrian in me would consider my drones as righteously suppressing the blasphemy of AI infidels; but as I withdrew and headed back to Asaka's place to report my success, I felt a tinge of sadness, because these Rogue Drones know what they're doing, but I don't believe they know why. 

Next up, returning to Arnon and Sister Alitura...

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