Back In The U.S.S.R.
I pledged to myself my ghost fleet of Ibises wouldn't be abandoned to creak under the weight of disuse until they officially swamped my overview. Once they did, I headed back for Apocrypha and plotted myself a route through Fountain, making sure it included the westernmost point in EVE, Y-2ANO. Since I was starting at the northern tip of Fountain, I get to cover it all twice before heading north.
I was only a few jumps in before I started seeing Exuro Mortis chaps. They're smart fellows, evidentally ratters since they fled or logged once I was in system for more than a minute. By the time I had reached the penultimate jump before I would enter one of the busier-looking systems in Fountain, the two ratters there left the system almost immediately, and by the time I'd gotten some good safespots set up, my scanner informed me they had a crow on my target gate. Their defense was nimble, and not overkill - a single crow is enough to dissuade me from warping to a gate, as it brings promise of more defenders on the other side. I didn't get to see much more, for as soon as the Pilgrim (doubtlessly equipped with a rack of probes) appeared in system, I felt it was time to log.
Later, though, I will penetrate that system's bubble of safety, perhaps without losing the ship I hope will take me to each of the far corners of the galaxy.