EVE Online

EVE Online

In the cold expanse of space 🌌, Seraphina's Vindicator-class battleship pierced the darkness, its battered hull a testament to countless battles. Seeking the elusive "Eve's Embrace," she received an enigmatic message: "Find me in the dark." Following the coordinates, she discovered an ancient, mysterious structure in a desolate system.

The Keeper of Secrets 👻, a being of light, revealed her purpose: to restore cosmic balance disrupted by capsuleer greed. Seraphina's quest unfolded, uncovering lost knowledge and ancient civilizations. The line between ally and adversary blurred as she faced peril and sacrifices, realizing that true power lay in preserving New Eden's equilibrium.

Seraphina's journey continued, a quest transcending her personal ambitions, guided by the Keeper of Secrets and the echoes of the Elders. In the cold depths of space, she forged a path toward the salvation of a universe yearning for balance and harmony. 🚀🌟

The Haunted Hulk

He awoke with a start, the Captain's Quarters still eerily lit in that strange half-day half-night mode it seemed perpetually stuck in. His back creaked as it always did after a night on the couch. When would the restrictions be lifted and a decent bedroom be allowed by the Stations? He rubbed his eyes and thought, probably not soon enough.

She stood on the dais in front of the wall of screens. He didn't see her at first, her presence being outside the normally empty environment of the rented office. She was plain, small and obviously Minmatar. Her hands raised imploringly and then she quickly vanished.

"Huh" he thought as his hand hit the Commlink. His wife answered, she was always up before him no matter how early he awoke. "How did you sleep?", she asked. He smiled. Even though they couldn't share the same apartment, he silently cursed the Station once again, she could still read his mind. "About usual," he replied, "Although this morning I've seen a ghost." "That's interesting," she said in that way that wives have of saying things that make you feel insignificant, "What are your plans for today?"

Before he could make a smart-ass remark that he would be forced to regret for the rest of the day, he was interrupted by several apparitions materializing from the walls. About twelve or so horribly dressed Minmatar citizens shambling across the floor. All with that imploring hand-raised plea that the little girl had perfected earlier. "I've got more of them now, with me here in the office. I may have to call you back." They were getting uncomfortably close. "Don't you dare hang up on me with ghosts in your office." There was still a smile in her voice, but it was edged with concern.

The oldest of the group stopped short and the rest waited, the amount of pleading only worsened in this paused state of affairs. "What are they doing?", his wife asked. But he barely heard her as he watched a Giant Secure Container form in the space before his eyes. It spun there lazily and he could hear crying, scratching and wailing coming from within the cargo container. The container burst into flames before his eyes. The leader, for that was all he could think of him as, looked directly into his eyes...

"They're gone now." His voice must have sounded far away. "Are you ok? Should I try and come over?" He thought about that for a second, knowing how hard it was to make that happen - it would involve a bit of daring do, some scaffolding, a ladder, a few bribes, and a death-defying swing from one gantry platform to another. "Uh, no need.  I have somewhere I need to be. Can you jump into the Impel and meet me at the Rani gate in five? Bring a few dozen med-kits and see if you can scrounge up a medical team or two?" He clicked off the Commlink before she could reply.

He called for one of his Thrashers, he needed something small and cheap. Going into high security space was no easy task, and while his wife could come and go as she pleased, it was a bit more of an issue for him. The dock manager wanted to know if he needed a crew and he waved him off, he'd handle this one alone, no reason to put anyone else at risk.

At the gate he outlined his plan and his thoughts to his wife. Most of the work would fall into her lap, since he'd be shot on sight by the sort-sighted buffoons of Concord. "I still think you're crazy, it's been five days..."  He smiled as he jumped his Thrasher in and she followed, "When have you ever known me to not..."  He became immaterial for a moment and reassembled on the other side, "... be crazy? Warping to the bookmark, follow when you can."

He arrived to an empty belt. He only had a moment, quick d-scan and he saw it, just as Concord started appearing in the belt next to him, he warped off again.  He saw the Impel land as he entered warp.  She'd know what he was up to.

This time he landed in an inferno, way closer to the sun than he liked. The Thrasher sealed up even though he was safe in his pod, automatic protection for the crew that would normally be onboard. Where was his wife? Already the police were landing, he only had a few moments. And then he saw her and the black ship emerge right on top of the can. He smiled as his board lit up and he was in his pod, without a ship around him.

The little girl was with him and she smiled this time. "I've got thirty or forty survivors, they're in bad shape but the meds say it's mostly dehydration and hunger... they should be ok with some medical attention." His wife's voice always in control. He knew the answer before he asked, "What about children?"  This hiss from space wailed in his ears, the little girl kissed him on the cheek, "The story we're getting is the bastards kept the children in another container... I'm sorry, but that one... didn't make it."

Her name was Ran, smiled again and vanished - like all good apparitions should. He didn't smile. He'd killed them when he ganked that Hulk last week. No indication the Hulk was smuggling slaves to Amarr, none at all. Goddamn nasty business.

He watched the police still circling his pod. Not a single one of them would stop and help. They punished but they rarely showed the first sign of human caring. Certainly Concord's hospitals would be better than the ones in Ouelleta, but no help would come from that side. As usual. These were the self-same bastards that allowed slavery in the first place.

He watched the Impel enter warp and he followed it back to the gate.  "It's a goddamn hard universe Ran, honestly... you're probably better off dead."

But he knew better.

Excellent story. Thanks for sharing it and congratulations: 1st place is yours!

Thanks Alex. The original story was published on my blog back in 2011, updated and revised slightly for this bounty. I did consider updating the captain's quarters references and some other slightly out-dated information, but ultimately I thought it all added to the story.

Title: Nobody heard the screaming

Words: 769


Somewhere in a forgotten system

Unknown Date

The ship was quiet but for a few lights as it sat on the fringes of that lonely star system; the system's primary shone in the distance, a spot not much brighter than others dotting the otherwise dark endless sky.

"I don't know why we have to sit out here and do routine check-ups." Second Technician Doroty Lesset spoke into the com as she walked down one of the many corridors crisscrossing the ship and leading into its bowels.

"You know how capsuleers are." came the reply from First Technician Tyler Vandof, sitting at the main technical station a few decks above "Sometimes their reasoning is unfathomable."

She made a tsk tsk sound as she reached the maintenance panel highlighted in her overview "Here we are." She grunted as the panel proved to be harder than expected to open: a good pull had the metal panel detach itself from its housing.

"Now..." She observed the electronics housed into the panel: cables came in and out, a few lights stared in silence. Without a diagram, it would be kind of impossible to find the problem. She checked her work order and the associated diagram and then she got to work.

A few minutes passed by and then a few more as the ship kept on sitting quietly in the darkness. "How is it going Dorothy?" Tyler asked as he checked the remote diagnostic: the panel was open and highlighted in red, as it should "Dorothy?"

He turned to another technician "Do we have com problems?” “Nothing to my knowledge.” Came the dry reply. He shrugged at first, but then, time passed and no feedback came, the remote diagnostic reported no change: the panel was still open for maintenance. Then and only then, Dorothy's online status light flickered off.

"I guess I'll go take a look. Looks like Dorothy is no more online but the panel is still open." His main guess was some kind of technical problems, it could happen that certain ship systems interfered with internal wireless communication, or maybe her com gear had died, which was also possible.

He knew the ship pretty well, like most of the crew, and he didn't have trouble making his way through corridors and access ladders. Only... he felt chill, an unreasonable feeling for a ship with an environmental control holding the temperature stable and constant. Also did it all feel kind of… darker? Another unreasonable assumption as the lights were once again set at a standard power and they were not in idle or emergency status.

He came into the corridor where Dorothy had opened the panel... And there was nothing but the open panel "Dorothy?" He called out but there was no answer; in fact, it felt too silent, even the ever present vibration of the ship was barely audible. "If it's a game it's no fun." He warned, taking a look around, feeling a growing uneasiness.

He took a look into the open maintenance panel but all was as it should... but for Dorothy's power tool, inserted into a valve’s calibration socket. Why would she leave it there...?

At the technical station nobody worried, in fact someone even went as far as guessing that the First and Second Technician had disappeared for some... ah, in depth technical review. They did not worry, at least until the power run out and communications died, then they did worry.

“Ah! Everyone is dead." He chuckled powering off the screen on which he had read the little horror tale. It was just as he expected: people disappearing, and dying, in a lone ship deep in space. In fact, nobody truly knew what could lurk out there and that was perfect for these little horror stories. He didn’t really believe in cosmic darkness or alien entities crawling up into a ship or into his station, he had lived too long in dangerous and often remote stations to really be fooled. Whatever happened it was due to either a human touch or a physical process and nothing else.

He stretched as he got up from his chair, it was time for a routine walk around. He grabbed his jacket and headed out into the bowels of the lone, and mostly automated, mining installation; the cluster of asteroids and prefabricated structures sat in the furthest asteroid belt from the dim, primary star. Far away from prying eyes and noisy interruptions.

The pad’s screen flickered “Nobody heard the screaming.” it appeared as it was written on the last page of the tale.

Someone screamed down below but nobody heard it.

The Day Physics Broke: The Strange Story of the Raitaru

In a hurried structure removal operation, we were taking down a complex of 7 Raitarus, with a 5-minute margin between each one. We were ready to collect the stations and their respective equipment, however, we never anticipated witnessing a quantum error that would break the laws of physics.

Upon completion of the process, the station seemed ready and in order to be transported. However, the pilot noticed something strange: the container with the equipment had not been generated. Furthermore, in a very curious manner, the Raitaru was not packaged. Although strange, it seemed possible to transport it... or so we thought.

With the cargo in the hangar, we proceeded to transport it to its destination. It was a relatively quiet journey and good spirits filled the air. The escort fleet traveled peacefully, ensuring the integrity of the transport ship that had also gathered the rest of its cargo, a not insignificant sum of 40 billion.

There were 3 jumps left to reach the destination when, without warning, the cargo hold suffered a collapse upon detecting that the faulty Raitaru had occupied a greater volume than allowed by the ship, causing its capsule to notify of the error and preventing it from jumping, moving, or taking any gates.

Amazement quickly turned into panic when one of their escorts detected a hostile ship approaching the system where the freighter was stranded. Quickly, the escort took up defensive positions, hoping to stop the hostile before it spotted the stranded freighter 10 km from the nearest gate.

Meanwhile, the freighter pilot couldn't get his ship to function. The pressure mounted, worried about the value of his cargo and being unable to jump for no apparent reason. In an effort to save as much as possible, he chose to jettison all the cargo into space and start slowly taking what his ship allowed him.

As he selected his cargo, another freighter was on its way to examine and try to recover the faulty Raitaru. The escort closely followed the movements of the hostile, only one jump away. However, the hunter was unaware of the ongoing operation.

After 20 minutes of tension and hard work, the faulty station was successfully reintroduced into a freighter. For safety, it was decided to leave it isolated in the hangar of the nearest station, awaiting Upwell technicians to identify the reason for its malfunction or for its mass to increase enough to endanger the hangar that currently contains it.

all of this is based on a real bug that to this date remains unresolved

Warning - Graphic content ⚠

Cloned Bodies

A tormenting scream echoed through his mind and shook him awake. There was cold sweat on his body. He blinked disoriented. A single weak source of light flickering above him stung into his eyes. The thin, dirty blanket was neatly placed above his naked body. He felt shivering cold, but his body seemed ignorant of it. Why can't I move? His breath became heavy. Fighting the rising panic that goes along with a feeling of helplessness. He tried again. His muscles didn't obey. Exhausted, he gave up. Only his eyes seemed under his control.

"I almost thought you'd refuse to wake up again."

A cold shower ran down his neck. The speaker was to his right, just beyond his field of view. There was anger and disapproval within the cold voice.

"We are far from done with you."

We? He tried to speak. What was this place? Why was he here? But instead of words, only stinking air escaped his mouth, rattling. Another wave of fear washed over him as he tried to get a feeling for his mouth. There was only a sore emptiness where his memory said his tongue should be. My god...

A slender figure emerged from the darkness to his left. The cold light cast hard shadows over a featureless face. They were looking down through a pair of rugged welding goggles. The reflection within them looked disturbingly unfamiliar to him.

This... This isn't my body!

While the figure put on an apron, covered in ugly stains of unknown origin the voice from the darkness continued.

"You have some very disgusting bodies in your clone bay. Suits degenerated scum like you."

With his limited options, he tried to spot who was speaking.

"Let's begin. And start with this atrociousness on his Gallentean head."

With a slapping sound, the slender figure beside him put on a pair of rubber gloves. The gloves' look matched the apron. From a pocket, they pulled a scalpel with a curved blade. It hardly reflected any light through the rust. Or was it dried blood?

Begin with what?

The slender figure stepped closer. No! He tried to move with all his might. Get away from me!

"You might have noticed you are missing a tongue today." There was movement to his right. The speaker stepped into view. Their face was a terrifying grimace of anger and hate. "I was sick of your pathetic whining."

The goggles grabbed something on his head with one hand and placed the scalpel with the other. The blade wasn't exactly sharp and ripped more than it cut through his hair and flesh. He closed his eyes and held his breath for as long as he could. These people were here for pain. His pain. Why? What did he do? Blood started to flow down his head.

The ripping skin made a disgusting sound and a flash of pain forced the air out of his lungs. FUCK! The speaker placed a metal tablet on his chest and the other one dropped a hairy, blood-soaked triangle on it.

Was that... a cat ear?

"You know. I really get to like this Serpentis station. You can get almost any kind of drug here." The speaker held a syringe in his field of view. "From the ones that paralyze people by full consciousness to this one: It increases the brain's sensitivity for nerve signals." He flipped his finger against it.

"Some take it to improve their sexual pleasures. But it works just as well to increase pain."

With a sadistic smile, he lowered the syringe into his face. Why?! Hyperventilating he did the only thing he could do and shut his eyes. A second later the nerve of his right eye burst into flames followed by the pressure of the liquid drug entering his body in a place where no needle should ever go. Immediately the cut on his head burned like pulsing fire with every beat of his panicking heart.

"Let's keep going with the skin on the feet," the torturer said. "Did you restock on the acid?"

He felt a sicking pull on his eye as the syringe was pulled out. It felt like there was suddenly sandpaper on the thin metal tube. He heard someone scream in agony before he realized it was him.

Bob, help me!

"Just to make sure you don't forget, egger: You took twelve lives when you destroyed that Venture. There are nine more we need to torture out of your cloned bodies until we have settled that score."

Thanks for the nightmares greybill. Appreciate it.

P.S. I really enjoyed the cat ears reference.

I docked my Jump Freighter in Jita 4-4. I went to the kitchen searching for something edible. And if you just want to eat because your mouth feels lonely you tend to be picky. Questioning my life choice… today it will be deep frozen fried fries, laziness. Unpacking the “oil thingi, heating it up… by putting the fries in it hits me.

Emergency Drugs? Yes! Pulse Up,all of it. Fastest man in the universe heading back to the PC Room.

Like when the car dies all lights in the Tachometer signs are blinking. beside heavy breathing… It's docked as it was the last time and the time before and before this and also that time which i said will never happen and the time before that where i thought to write about it or was that the one after.. Tabs to eve ah docked.. pewh.

Don´t lie, you may had it differently but you had it!

Communities

There’s more to love

Help shape the future of our platform as we build the best place to express and enjoy your passions, whatever they may be.

Emoji

© Just About Community Ltd. 2024