HPL ended up sitting in high sec for a year with NOVA alliance. Tried to jump start the alliance, but at the time I was still trying to run the show as almost a single man operation. Commander Vice was running T2 Production, HPL had expanded its Tower Status up to One Medium and One Large, and there was some small growth going on. Life wasn’t sucked out of the corp, but other than mining and mission running, it was pretty quiet. This was the longest stagnate time before we ended up joining another Null Sec alliance.
Mordus Angels was not anything close to what had been promised to us. When we decided to go out there, there was hopes of them actually owning space of their own. Granted at that point in time, NEXE decided they were going to blow through that piece of space and hang out for a while. There is a constellation in Pure Blind region, U-7RBK, that is known as Mordus’ Angels Legion that is NPC Null Space. During that time, it wasn’t a bad place to hang out and MOA pretty much had the run of the constellation. Also Sister’s of Eve – NPC Null Space – was just a few jumps away from the station we operated out of. After seven months we were seeing some growth and people wanted a change. I especially wanted to see HPL jump back up into life again. Since promises weren’t fulfilled, I wanted more for HPL, people had fire again and we left.
Wasn’t long and we joined Quantum Forge just a month after our time with Mordus Angels. This was actually setup before we were in position to move out into the space they were renting. I would have to say this was one of our most prosperous times and biggest time of growth in the corps history to this point. As well as the start of some lessons that the leadership of the corporation needed to learn the hard way. During our five months in Detorid, 1-PGSG, we had extensive moon mining operations going on with a total of 28 POS’s running at the time. Commander Vice headed this up, with me running the fuel the majority of the time. Corporation at this point built at least 3 Jump Freighters, one of which is the Anshar – Jumping Spider – and don’t remember if we actually built Dave’s that he donated to the corp.
Quite a few of our current leadership and older members were picked up during this time as well. Lesson one, was that I can’t do it all alone when it comes to running a corporation. We now have more Jump Freighter pilots than we have ships that they can fly. Also learning the moon mining side of Eve was something that should have been a priority long before it became one. With moon mining there is a side story that the older guys know that I think is a part of the history because it leads to why we ended up leaving.
One of HPL’s members approached me about one of his friends joining the corporation. The member was a guy who was an asset to the corp and so, despite my gut instinct, I conceded to let this player in. This was also after a discussion where he didn’t want to give up his API key when it came to joining up with the corporation. PromisedOne tried to pick apart what we were doing when it came to moon mining. Was causing a bigger rift in the corporation and others were complaining as well. He left and brought his corp into Quantum Forge despite my objections. HPL was the second biggest corp in the alliance and trailing the largest by only 10 or so members at the time. I would say up till that point, Balcor Mirage – Head of QF, would actually stop and listen to what I had to say on things. Not to mention there were numerous times that HPL was coming to his rescue when his own members wouldn’t lift a finger to help him. This is not counting the time as well, that HPL stopped the system from being lost when the other residents decided to bail on our Carrier pilot, Commander Vice, when he was taking out a Blockade Unit. PromisedOne was preaching to the others behind the scenes that if he had the moons, he could make it where the rent was covered without anyone having to pay rent. Why moon mining was working for us, was we would take what was out there, make other T2 ships with it, to then by the moon materials we needed to finish up a jump freighter. In PromisedOne’s infinite Eve wisdom, declared that it couldn’t be done after he laid out how it could have been done. Not to mention that two moons got taken out from under us, thinking we were helping another corporation when they handed it over to PromisedOne since he knew we wouldn’t. During an alliance head meeting, there was a proposal placed out to tax the moons that were being mined. Proposal didn’t take a lot of things into account and basically the way it was laid out and the amount of moons we were mining, instead of paying a third of the rent (rent was based on member count) it would put us to pay eight-five percent of the rent.
Commander Vice had found another alliance willing to take us, so within three days time we had all our POS’s taken down and moved out before QF had any idea as to what we were doing. (If there is a picture of the old members POS, this would be a good place to link it, because without seeing it, you have no idea how much work that actually took to pull off) Within a week after our departure from QF, the alliance had pulled out of there and back into high sec. Wasn’t until I was telling Balcor that we were moving on, that he was telling me it was only proposed tax. Problem with the QF leadership, was it was a majority wins vote. I told him that HPL stood no chance of winning when there were about ten other small corps that would vote in favor of it. Balcor couldn’t deny the math, the vote situation or at that point give me a good reason to stay. I am surprised that PromisedOne stuck with them for a year before joining another alliance. Eclipse Industrials – Balcor’s Corp – is now less than half of what it was if not closer to a third, from when we left the alliance. They are now in another alliance themselves. I still say that HPL’s leaving of QF was the downfall of that alliance.
On our exit from QF, we joined an alliance call Imperial Legi0n. When we joined them, they were about 300 or so member alliance and our 85 members added a good deal to them. At the time of our joining we were one of their more active PVP corporations and at this point that was kind of a sad thing to say since we were mainly industrial. I would have to say this is probably one of the more interesting 2 months of my time as a CEO in dealing with DRDNOUGHT their alliance exec. We were promised a system of our own, which was one of the reasons we went there, and on the day of our arrival…. lets just say there was nothing. We stationed for the month out of the hub of our little section. Thing is, Geminate region isn’t exactly space people fight over for its great systems, it is actually fought over for its Tech Moons. One of the few benefits was it also actually had easy high sec access when it came to moving things around that we needed. I know this is corporate history, but since it is also a good deal of my story too, I am going to side note something here. During this time too, I was active in Eve, but it was during my works busy time as well as trying to manage a girlfriend in the mix. So my time was kind of at a premium when I was in Eve and generally working to put out fires. I was in the process of learning the lessons of how to really setup a leadership group, because two days away and it seemed at times like everything halted.
First clue should have been that when Imperial Legi0n started expanding their reach, they still hadn’t offered us a system yet. Wasn’t until I put their feet to the fire on it the subject that all of a sudden we could choose the system we wanted. I picked the best system out of our options, but lets be serious here. When you are picking from a handful of systems that suck already, all you are going to get is something that is a piece of crap. -.39 was the best system out there and designated as the one everyone could rat in because of it being the highest. System we got was -.13 and I will say that for what it was, people still treated it like home. HPL went to work on upgrading the system and people busted their butts to get the system levels up so we could have mediocre ratting going on. Also we were the only ones with a cyno beacon up in our system if my memory serves me right, which actually came to save one of Imperial Legi0ns fleets. It was an Op that we weren’t invited on and another clue that we should have picked up on that things weren’t exactly quite right. Also there was a rule that there was no moon mining till it was determined by the alliance what was going to be done with moon material. I had scanned down the area that we were in and actually pissed a few people off who saw my probes. It caused more issues when we were having a meeting, DRDNOUGHT said that he didn’t have the area scanned but would be getting on it as soon as he could. I told him I had it scanned and not only that, but people were moon mining when he told me we couldn’t. Yes, I know this makes me sound like a dick even as I type it and read it, but when it comes to HPL I am going to do what is in our best interest. If moon mining would help us make more isk as a corporation, I wasn’t going to break the rules, but don’t tell me I can’t when everyone else already is.
One of my fondest memories, was that we had our annual gathering while we were in their space. It was 11:00 at night, we were sitting on my back porch, couple of people smoking, most of us drinking and I am wanting to say it was Revid who came out to tell us that the area was being roamed. It surprised our alliance as well as those who were roaming us, because of the time, they were used to no one being around. Now all of a sudden eight or so people are logging into Eve to kick some butt. I don’t remember how the roam turned out though, so one of the others still around would need to fill in on that if they remember. Too many of the bad roams with those guys fill my head. One of the Falcon pilots on a roam started jamming their own logistics ship, because he had auto-lock on.
The final two pieces that brought about us leaving Imperial Legi0n. There is nothing like catching the leader in the act of conspiring with the enemy. At least two of HPL’s members caught DRDNOUGHT talking with “Reds” about flying fleets with them, helping them out, and basically carrying on a old friend conversation with them. Can you say conflict of interest? Especially when you do something like this in the local channel and not pay attention that others are witnessing the conversation. It wasn’t long after he was caught a second time, that we were getting our system pulled out from underneath us. Something about how they weren’t supposed to take it, it was promised to someone else, and that they are going to be coming for it. If we didn’t vacate, then there would be political fallout and we would lose what assets were still in position. HPL did get reimbursed for the upgrades to the system and all that, but when that happened, we were out of there. It wasn’t a surprise when less than a year later we were hearing of a major scandal happening in the alliance. Their numbers had grown significantly after we had left and they changed space. Scandal was that this corp had a spy or multiple spies in it, so they were booting them out. That corp turned around and were firing back that the spy in Imperial Legi0n was DRDNOUGHT himself. Me personally, coincidence? I think not.