I hit the ground in cloud of dust and regolith. My partner suit was to the right, and the drone-only pair were nearly six kilometres distant.
Communications to the ship and friendly units were good, but not excellent; combat conditions required the use of infra-red lasers in line-of-sight-only encrypted transmission. The frigate herself, normally tracking shuttles and other similarly-sized vehicles, struggled to lock its lasers onto the four tiny suits and was being assisted by a handful of hardened comsats.
“Kurzweil to Big Bird, your rooks are in play.”
“Copy, Kurzweil Actual. Operation state is green, repeat green, until enemy contact. Guns cold, stay hidden.”
“Message received, Big Bird. Advise, suspended dust and ground tracks indicate movement of heavy machinery recently.”
“Proceed with mission, Kurzweil. Go black only if necessary.”
I picked up the pace, heading for a ridgeline with a view to the spaceport defences.