It's been 10 days since my last entry. And it has been a crazy ten days. When I first started out, I didn't want to get ahead of myself and invite dangerous problems. Well, it didn't work out so great. For a while I was good. Hustling in the Sidewinder, having a good time. I was banging out courier and SRV scan missions and making some money. Slowly, but surely. Even put myself in a new Diamondback Scout. Pinard took me along to some Haz-Res's to tag bounties. Made a good few hundred thousand credits doing this. I had some close calls but it was good practice. I do not trust myself, or 1 medium hardpoint to score bounties by myself right now, but there's fun to be had with the homie in an Anaconda.
Once the Thargoids attacked those stations in the Witch Head and Pleiades systems, Commanders were being paid pretty well for helping with the evacuations and repairs. We convinced ourselves that I could make it out to the Witch Head Nebula with an 18LY jump range. The Pleiades system was closer, but but I wanted to begin my Federal Navy service. It's a long road to Rear Admiral, and to 190 million credits, so I wanted to begin sooner rather than later.
Long story short - I didn't fucking make it to Witch Head. I should've known when I wasn't able to plot a course there. Pinard told me it was the range, that the map couldn't plot routes more than 500 or so LY away. It made sense at the time. 40 jumps I must have taken, and I was nearly there. Once I was within 200LY from the Nebula, I was still unable to plot a course for the remainder of the trip. Then it dawned on me. I was ONE system away from the Witch Head Nebula, but I was blocked by a massive cluster of systems under the umbrella "Col 70". Completely inaccessible. If my jump range had been just a little better, I could have jumped right past them and been on my way. But I couldn't do it. I easily spent the better part of an hour scouring the galaxy map, looking for any way in. I would have traveled twice the distance. But there was absolutely no way around, only past. FML.
I was exhausted and discouraged at this point. I made my way over to the Pleiades as soon as possible so I could still get in on the rescues, sans Federation reputation. These were Alliance systems. Not that I have anything against them, but I could give a damn about increasing my rep with them. But credits are credits. I got in a day or two's work before the critical repairs were done and the evacuations weren't necessary. I managed to scrape together a million or so with these missions. I now had enough to upgrade. I traded in the Scout for an Explorer on Pinard's recommendation, fitted it light to increase the range. By this point, I had gotten wind of a Federation rank hotspot. They needed a lot of courier and cargo jobs done within about a 1-2 jump distance between each other. It was based out of Ochosi, which was a hell of a trip, but I made it no problem and got well paid for that map data.
They really did need some work done. I started doing some couriers runs between Ochosi and Chapka and earning reputation. Not a lot of money in most of the jobs, but the service was well recognized by the Federation. It didn't take me long to be recruited and promoted to Cadet. After a while they offered me a cargo mission, go and find some Gallite and bring it back. I had the space for what they needed, I just hoped it was nearby. Well, I was lucky. I did some research and found some Gallite at the same station I had been getting most of these jobs from. I headed over there and then realized some of the materials in this station were selling for double the price back where I was going. Including the Gallite. So I bought everything I could hold, enough for the Federation job and the rest to sell on my own at 100% profit. After a hard days work, I had earned the rank of Midshipman and was worth about 7.x million.
Finally, things are picking up a bit. For now, I'm perfectly content to do this work for the Federation and get closer to my Corvette. Now that I'm a Midshipman, I can buy a Dropship once I have the money. I might just, and start bounty hunting to mix things up.