Long story short, once I arrived in zero sector to harvest some asteroids with Malael and Gower the company was soon dissolved. Most of the members had joined the greater alliance and they had little interest in the zero sector mining that we were doing.
After slogging my way through zero sectors astroid hunting with little profit, I was quite tired of unstable the employment. Malael and some of the other miners were able to find some contract work in Gallente space. To make things simpler I liquidized all ship and cargo then set myself up on a pod. It took a bit of organizing but I found a group who was on their way to Gallente space. They charged a relatively small fee to ship me over in their cargo. The price they charged should have tipped me off that something was not right.
And I learned that age old saying: you get what you pay for. I made it to Gallente space, but not in such a timely fashion. I woke up years later, being defrosted by a pair of Gallente enforcers who told me that I was in storage to be sold in a slavery ring! The Gallente government had been tracking a larger ring of slave traders and happened upon the wearhouse where I was stored in my pod pending sale.
Important lesson, kids: even in space, you get what you pay for.
Apparently, they had difficulty selling old Jela because of my known podded status and the small reputation I had made the last time I was flying in the area. So once I was defrosted all the contacts I had made prior had already been completed contracts and had left the sector. And who knows what happened to Malael and Gower. I sent messages out to them as well as Chowder and some other older friends, but no one was in the areas to respond.
Upon checking my banking accounts I found my funds much lower then when I had last seen them. I have a few station apartments and properties in storage here and there in various systems that I travel to frequently. It saves on having to find accommodations when traveling a lot. I pay for these using automatic deduction which apparently dried up the bulk of my savings. This made it impossible for me to purchase a large enough ship to start any contracts anyway.
So there I was, with little cash and without a ship and no contacts. I did the best I could and found a company that was actively hiring, Dros Enterprises.
Sometimes when you make one bad decision it compounds upon itself. Another important lesson.
Dros was advertising employment for genetal security, transport piolets, and science personnel. The pay was listed as reasonable and the company had a good reputation around the station. I was easily hired on as a piolet and started making cargo and personnel transport runs on a company ship. It was strange flying a ship that didn’t belong to me. It just was comforting knowing if I broke it I didn’t have to pay for it.
There were several weeks of these monotonous shipment runs up and down a route Dros was using exclusively. We were asked to stay on route and not to ask questions. My supervisor did not know any details of where all the supplies and people were going. It was a bit difficult to tell what Dros Enterprises actually did. I got curious and couldn’t help myself asking other piolets about the company. I was only able to discover that the other piolets were hired on recently to the company like me and were just as clueless as me.
My route did change slightly each day which made the tasks less monotonous. But it was easy to see that all the shipments were running in one direction into a region of mostly empty space. Eventually I was told to wait for further instructions at a remote station. I was there for a few weeks and learned that the station was packed with Dros employees. There was a mix of support staff and lots of well educated egg heads. No one seemed to know what Dros was doing on this remote system.
I met a security officer who was asking a lot questions in a bar. We all had personal time so many of us spent lots of time in the bars and dance clubs. This guy, Corbin, didn’t find out too much information other than Dros found something out in a remote location. Apparently one of the smaller companies in the alliance is an exploration corp. Dros had been spending a majority of their funds in supporting and suppling a recent find starting around three months ago.
Corbin had a lot of guesses as to what the alliance could have found but it was quite obvious that it was something big and valuable.
Soon after this conversion I was given orders in a general meeting to fly supplies to a newly constructed station. The coordinants were very remote. The supervisor stated that once we left our current location we could not contact others about the actions and work being done by the alliance. We all signed a nondisclosure aggrement with a lot more questions than answers.