RNTS Fair Lady -> 2km from LZ, Hesperius
8/5/2145 - +0007 Hrs after Drop
While he hadn't been in the muster station at the time, he was still close enough to heard the drop call. He fell in to the first platoon as they walked, quickly piecing together what he had missed from the briefings. He wasted no time in embarking in his pod, quickly running through his pre-drop checks and checking his loadout before the lights turned ready and his settled in for the jarring sensation of launch.
Of the three groups of pods; the dead, the damaged and the lucky, James fell into the second. As soon as the platoon entered firing range, The pod to his immediate left was torn apart by alien weaponry and the re-entry package within detonated, the concussive blast sending debris into the guidance systems of James' pod and shorting out the auto-nav. "Shit, Fuck!"
He couldn't help but swear loudly, unfortunately into open comms, before being prompted with the automatic activation of the manual guidance controls as the pod began to pitch and veer off course.
Thick black smoke poured from the left-side control surfaces as he fought against the damaged controls, all too aware of the rapidly approaching ground, until he broke the tops of the trees and mentally resigned himself to fate. The pod impacted the ground with ballistic force and everything went black...
When James came to, he felt the straps of his seat digging uncomfortably into his shoulders as he tried to blink away his blurry vision, groaning as the pain struck him all at once. "Ah, my fucking head... what the hell happened?"
He felt liked he'd been clocked over the head by a masonry hammer or crowbar. He fumbled at the straps before punching the manual release of his pod's door, stumbling out and falling onto his hands and knees in a daze, pulling off his helmet as he did so. His head was killing him, he couldn't focus... He crawled back into the pod to grab at the emergency medkit, fishing out a couple of pills and knocking them back without much thought. It was a gamble, but it luckily paid off as his vision cleared and the pain mostly faded from his head. A palm to his forehead, he took a deep breath of the swampy jungle air, feeling slightly sickened by the warm, humid air but slightly glad to still be alive, before picking up his helmet and inspecting it for damage. It was mostly superficial, a bit of lost paint and a few hair-width cracks, but the integrity was alright. He pulled it back on before looking around. "No-one around... I need find the rest of Easy and regroup with First Platoon."
He hopped back into the pod and retrieved the rifle and sidearm from within, but the SMG seemed to be a lost cause. The receiver, barrel and mag-well were FUBAR, so he grabbed the spare magazines but left the ruined weapon behind. A flickering on one of the readouts drew his attention and he looked to see a mission clock as well as a geographical read-out. The crash had thrown him way off course, and he'd blacked out for just over 5 minutes. The revelation drew an agitated hiss from him as he pushed off of his position in the doorway to the pod, stepping back to properly survey the area around the crash site. The falling pod had evidently smashed through multiple trees and even a small rockface, coming to rest at the bottom and surrounded by metallic and stone debris. The external damage was still sparking and lightly smoking, but no open fires seemed to have started, he didn't have to worry about an imminent explosion but still..."Fuuuuuuck..."
He cursed under his breath. With all the drops he'd seen, it wasn't often that people walked away from ones like that
, not without serious wounds at least. James still had all of his limbs in working order and he wasn't vomited blood, so if he believed in a god he'd be thanking the fuck out of them. He shook his head, stopped as a stabbing headache returned, before putting his hand to his radio."This is Specialist James Graves of 1st Platoon, Easy Company. Does anyone read me? Over."
Nothing. He was only met with static."I repeat, this is Specialist Graves. Does anyone Copy? Over."
Again, static. Either busted or out of range. Cursing softly for the nth time in the past few minutes, he unslung the SR20-D from his shoulder and begun the arduous journey to Easy Company's last known location.