A quick scramble call is made, there's a Rifter in a belt! With lots of laughs and shouts of "I'm going to get there first!" We all quickly undock and race to the belt, to try and tackle this unlucky pilot.
I'm in a Battleship, and I warp in 150km away from the Rifter, while everyone else is warping right on top of the poor fellow. I figure he is either already entering warp, or is about to. I lock, sensor boosters blaring. Guns active, everyone laughing on vent challenging everyone else to tackle him first. Poor bloke never saw it coming. One second, he's ratting in low sec space in a Frigate, the next second, a volley from eight 1400mm artillery cannons comes screaming at him, destroying his ship instantly.
A quick witty comment saves me from the groans of everyone else who wasn't able to get a lock, which was everyone, and the pod is on it's way to wherever the pilot had more ships waiting.
Later on in the day, things have quieted down, and most everyone is away for dinner, or just enjoying a quiet evening of chatting with each other.
I undock as I notice a few known macro haulers in system, and fly to one of my sniper spots. As I start popping the first few haulers that come through the gate, a few more decide to join me, either in sniper battleships or in something close range that can tank the gate guns.
Laughter fills the air as nearly everything that comes through the gate explodes, and we chide each other on the friendly competition. My lock times become legendary for the moment, and we all groan when someone else instantly pops whatever it was that they got their lock on.
The same Rifter pilot as earlier, flies through system, and is unlucky enough to find himself at our gate party. I lock, and he pops. He then spends the next half hour or so, repeatedly coming back in a noob ship, at different distances from the gate, dieing in a hail of weapon fire and laughter from our side.
After we lost count how many times we sent him back for another noob ship, I begin to wonder just why they are doing this. Are they having fun? Did we blow up everything they had and reduced them to nothing? Are they just crazy?
I open up a conversation, and try to start with some small talk.
Unfortunately, the pilot speaks next to no english, but I do find out that he is Russian and poor. For a six day old pilot, ratting in low sec... some call it ballsy, some call it stupid. Either way, I felt a little bad for the guy, and I transfer him 2 million isk, send him a friendly wave, and close convo.
He didn't come back to the gate in a noob ship after that.
Over the last few days, I had noticed another young pilot, albeit a few weeks old, running missions in our low sec home. Generally, these people are probed out and ransomed the first time they are seen. A bit preoccupied with other events, I don't think anyone really was up for probing out a frigate and wasting ammo.
Unfortunate for this pilot, they found themself landing on a gate when I was killing time, sniping haulers. A quick lock, and my guns let loose a mighty roar through space, careening into their craft, destroying it instantly. Another unlucky move for this pilot, they don't warp their pod out instantly, either a bit of disorientation (lag) from their ship exploding, or shock from the loss... this results in them back to the clone vat bay, regaining concious inside of a new body.
A short while later, I notice the pilot in system again. I strike up a conversation, asking if they had implants in their pod, and just general small talk. I also notice that they are in a noob ship, and are staying away from this gate.
I learn that they had implants, but were only cheap +1 attribute implants, and therefore not really an issue. We get to talk about running missions, and skill training, and just general direction as a pilot. Talk turns back around to getting blown up by me, and I make a referrence to the pass that we offer, which allows pilots to run missions in our systems without fear of attack from my corporation.
It isn't very common that we find someone young running lvl 1 missions out in this area, and our standard rates are geared more for the battlecruiser and battleship pilots, not those flying a fully t1 fit frigate. I offer them a substantial discount, and hash out a quick scale to increase as their ship size increases. The next day, they take me up on the offer, and are now able to run missions in the area knowing that there will be no Bastards waiting for them.
Sometimes, you look at a situation, and laugh at the stereotype. I'm a low sec pirate, I'm supposed to be the scum of eve, praying on hapless carebears who find themselves wandering into low sec in search of a mission or some rats that are fabled to be better than highsec. Why do I find myself chatting it up and being friendly with a 3 week old mission runner? Why do I find myself giving away isk, which was hard fought for, to a few day old pilot, who can't speak english?
Every now and then, you find yourself, looking back on a recent kill, and sighing in discontent, at how it was too easy... the pilot had a horrible fitting choice for their ship, and obviously didn't know what they were doing. You strike up a conversation, and give them some pointers on what to train for and what better stuff they could put on their ships.
Every now and then, you find yourself ransoming a young pilot, and then giving the ransom back after you watch the mission rats destroy their ship as you are warping away.
Most people don't understand why. They wonder, how you can be blood thirsty, cold, heartless, and ruthless on a daily basis, and almost randomly turn around and do something like this. Most people just don't understand why.
Sometimes you just do.