I won the bid on the wormhole, of course (Murphy's Law would have it no other way). With no desire to get into some kind of bidding war (I'm not much of a haggler offline, either), I'd simply opened with the amount I thought the system was worth, and apparently shut down any other interested parties who'd started low and planned to work their way up.
I still had options -- the most EvE-like being a quick email to the broker saying "LOL just kidding" and carry on as if nothing had happened -- but backing out of the bid rubbed me the wrong way, and frankly it was a pretty good system, depending on what we did with it.
I decided to get some input from Em and Shan and let them know of my special brand of recklessness.
"You bought a wormhole?" Em asked.
"I won the bid," I corrected. "The deal's not done yet."
"What... so..." He seemed to be seesawing between head-shaking amusement and incredulity. "Are you not going to do the C6 thing?"
"Well, first of all, I can always just back out of it."
"But... no. I'm still planning on the c6 thing, but this seemed like a really good backup plan and maybe something we could sort of do on the side."
"On the side?" Em repeated. "A second wormhole?"
"What system is it?" Shan asked (quietly, as he does most things).
I gave him the system signature. "I figure there's pretty much perfect Planetary Interaction, and it's got a persistent connection to high sec, so it's easy to get to, and we have plenty of alts who aren't going to be doing anything in the c6, so they can handle day to day stuff and basic defenses. We can keep it kind of pruned down by running a few sleeper sites when nothing else is going on, and the other static connection is into class 4 wormholes, so even if the c6 doesn't work, we can switch to the c2 and still be able to find harder sites to run and some better PvPers."
"Huh," murmured Shan. "It'll let us make silicone." He and Em had been using P.I. products in the last wormhole to make nanite repair paste, but the system hadn't had everything they'd needed -- I'd heard them mentioning the need to haul in multiple loads of silicone in the past.
"It lets you make anything," I said. "I mean, the PI alone would pay for the system in a month or less, right?"
"Yeah..." said Shan. He's quite adept with Planetary Interaction set ups, and based on what he's told me, it's possible (with about 10 days of pilot skill training) to set up planetary colonies that will net as much as 300 million isk in passive income, per character, per month. I'm personally terrible at setting such things up, but it sure sounds like something worth getting better at, and anyway I just really like the idea of being able to do something that will let all the guys make some easy money. I've got more than enough operating capitol, but some of the newer pilots aren't as well-off -- for them, the passive income from setting up PI on their main and even one alt on the same account would make a huge difference in the kinds of options they have. Teach a man to fish, as they say...
"So... you're saying buy the system. Set up a tower, and mostly just run P.I. in it?" asks Em.
"And keep it as a backup," I say, "or a place for some guys who aren't ready for the c6 to hang out and do their thing."
"Okay," says Em. "I thought you were crazy, but that actually sounds pretty cool."
"So you think I should do it?"
"And set up the Custom's Offices for some really high tax rate until you make back all the money you paid for it," he adds. "We can all make money after that, and you'll be paid off in case someone comes in and blows it all up."