Chapter 47: The Unexpected
Translator: _Min_ Editor: Rundi
“Jiang Chen, get out. IS’ patrol squad already noticed the disturbances on this side, and they are sending backup.” Nick’s voice transmitted from the communication device.
“Understood.” Nick waved at Robert and shouted, “Quick! Start running.”
Before he finished his sentence, Jiang Chen dashed out of the building and fired into the sky. The gunshot dispersed all the confused civilians. At the same time, he called Robert and headed directly into the alley.
“Dam*it! There are heavy machine guns.” Nick cursed as he quickly began to move. His position was already exposed when they cross fired.
The Toyota pickup truck carrying heavy machine guns drove through the streets and headed for the building where the hostage was held. The soldier on the pickup truck called the other soldiers while forcefully opening the switch, preparing to shoot.
The bullets fired like rain drops, quickly suppressing Nick’s position which forced him to get on the floor and crawl to the stairs. He then jumped up and fled downstairs.
The IS soldiers were not to be taken lightly as the ten person patrol team carried their assault rifles and moved towards Nick’s location with the intention of surrounding him. However, as a seasoned veteran, he stepped back and shot with his M27 while moving back to the car.
On the other side, Jiang Chen used his EP to control the drone and avoided the chasing IS soldiers as they passed through the crossfire zone harm free.
“Quick! Get in the car! You drive!” Jiang Chen opened the door and pushed Robert in. He then flew the drone in Nick’s direction.
“I have been surrounded, you guys leave first.” Nick gritted his teeth and glanced at the wound on his left shoulder. He fired a few rounds with one hand and then ran into another alley.
Although he remembered the layout of this place, his knowledge was nowhere comparable to the IS soldiers that regularly patrolled this area. Nick already accepted his fate, or else he should have already died in that small town in Kane.
He would have repaid the favor.
A grimace smile appeared on Nick’s face as he slammed against the dug-outs beside the road.
He decided not to run anymore. He wanted to teach these bloodthirsty hounds who was the real warrior!
“Six o’clock direction, go through that alley, quick!”
The voice from his headphone made him pause for a brief second before he clenched his teeth and followed Jiang Chen’s direction into the alley. Almost at the same time, he caught, with the corner of his eyes, a Toyota pickup truck that just ran across where he was.
A drop of cold sweat rolled down his face as he immediately followed Jiang Chen’s instruction and moved.
“There is a fruit store, go in it, there’s a back door in the room.” Under the guidance of the drone, all of the IS’s movements were exposed.
Although it was the complete opposite direction as the car, Nick chose to trust Jiang Chen’s instruction. He kicked open the wooden door as he disregarded the screaming woman, the frightened man as well as the innocent children. He threateningly held his gun up and then with quick strides he aimed at the back door.
Nick used his right shoulder, slammed open the door and got on another street.
“Cross the street and go into the alley before you make a left turn.”
The sound of IS soldiers’ footsteps and shouting resonated from afar. Nick resisted the pain in his shoulder and carried his assault rifle across the street.
The footsteps were moving away. It looked like they lost him. Nick let out a sigh of relief before he took out the bandage. He wrapped his wound while running. Under Jiang Chen’s direction, he quickly got back to the car.
“We have to hurry, there are more and more IS soldiers coming in this direction.” Jiang Chen helped Nick open the back door as he sat in the front passenger seat.
Robert sat behind the wheel as he started the car. Nick ripped off his shirt and changed into a shirt that he previously prepared to cover his wound.
“Where are we going?” Robert drove the car out of the alley and scanned around.
Jiang Chen reached out of the window to retract the palm-sized drone as he stuffed it back into his pocket.
“Head into the desert, all the roads are blocked off.”
“God… I am still alive, this is unbelievable.” Robert steered the wheel as he exaggeratedly let out a long sigh.
“We haven’t escaped yet.” Jiang Chen said with a bitter smile. He still did underestimate the ability of the terrorists as they responded with such swiftness. The original plan was to follow the road and head back into Baghdad.
“IS is much stronger compared to other extremists. I thought you had plans,” Nick had hesitated for a moment before he spoke.
Jiang Chen heard the words as he smiled with bitterness.
[I really don’t have a plan, looks like I have been too cocky this time.]
He was not worried about getting caught by the IS since he could always hide in the apocalypse. However, he couldn’t bring Robert and Nick over.
“…” Robert sensed the awkwardness on Jiang Chen’s face as he laughed. “Don’t worry, we’ll see as we go. They can’t be chasing us forever.”
He opened the GPS on the car.
“We still have enough fuel. We’ll cross the desert and go from the northern side of the Tharthar Lake to Tikrit. If we are lucky, the government force should be in control of the area.” A smile full of resignation appeared on Robert’s face, but Jiang Chen couldn’t even smile at all.
In other words, if Tikrit is under the control of IS.
They must take the gamble.
If he knew it was so problematic… It’s fine since he was already here and had the opportunity to test the strength of this equipment. Jiang Chen shook his head as he closed his eyes to rest. Surprisingly, he realized that he no longer felt uncomfortable killing people.
It was hard to say if it was a good thing or not.
Perhaps it was because all the people he killed deserved it. Jiang Chen remembered the atrocious acts conducted by the IS as he tried to justify his actions.
Robert looked rather optimistic as he hymned along with the tune on the car. The guy probably has seen too many deaths to be bothered by it.
Once the explosive song played, the car lifted the dust up on the sandy ground and drove into the endless desert.
Every single piece of sand here was covered by the smell of chaos.
Xia Shiyu sat on the sofa with her head wrapped in a towel. Under the bathrobe, her smooth and silky legs could be faintly seen covered by droplets of water. It was in the midst of summer as the room was air conditioned. She didn’t change into clothes yet as she enjoyed the light breeze.
Although she had a face more attractive than celebrities, even in her free time, it was still expressionless.
She leaned against the sofa as she casually lifted her legs. She turned on the TV with the remote.
“Now we’ll continue with the next piece of news. This morning, IS initiated an attack on Tikrit. The president of Iraq stated that they will do anything to defend Tikrit.”
Xia Shiyu didn’t really care about international news. Like most of the modern professionals, she was more interested in comedy shows, especially the ones that made people laugh.
Surprising, for someone who didn’t like to smile enjoyed humor.
[There are no news today?]
Xia Shiyu let out a breath for reasons she couldn’t explain.
[No news probably means he is safe.]
At least the news didn’t say that a Han man was abducted and taken hostage. The ministry of foreign affairs strongly advises citizens… and related news.
[Hmm? Why am I worried about him?]
Xia Shiyu was suddenly shocked as she subconsciously touched her lips as confusion flashed across her eyes.
She shook her head and pushed out the always grinning face from her head as she began to change the channel.
[It must be because I have been too tired lately.]
With the comedians on the screen as well as the waves of laughter from the audience, Xia Shiyu temporarily forgot about what troubled her.
Her breathing returned to normal as her emotion returned to normal.
As the night fell, Jiang Chen leaned against the chair with a cigarette in his mouth.
To prevent being spotted, the headlight must remain off. It would be too dangerous to keep going without any light, so Robert stopped the car.
“If you can’t fall asleep, why don’t you keep an eye out for now?” Robert smiled bitterly as he pressed against the steering wheel. Nick in the back was already snoring up a storm.
“How far away?” Jiang Chen blew a smoke ring out as he sighed.
“Probably two more days. There is enough water and food, you don’t have to be too nervous.” Robert shrugged.
Jiang Chen rolled his eyes. [Who is saving who?]
“I am doing a lot to get rid of the ten tons of gold.” Jiang Chen curled his lips.
“Ten tons!?” Robert suddenly stood up, but then a banging sound ensued. He hit his head against the roof, but he resisted the pain as he stared at Jiang Chen, full concentrated.
“… Fu*k, don’t look at me like that.” Jiang Chen was getting goosebumps as he moved back into contempt.
“Hehe.” Robert touched his greasy blond hair and moved back. “I know there is a one hundred million USD deal. But why would I do firearms? I’ll just help you sell gold.”
“Nope, I only stored this much gold over the years. I am starting to transition into other industries as well.” Jiang Chen let out a sigh.
“Transitioning? Is there something else that’s easier to sell?” Robert couldn’t fall asleep anymore as he also lit a cigarette.
“Technology? Buffet didn’t even dare to touch that.” Robert contumaciously sneered, “I tried to open my own firearm company before but gave up soon after. The risk of development is too high, so I only sell the finished product. It is easier to make money this way.”
“It is also more dangerous.” Jiang Chen didn’t disagree.
“Of course, but I love the adventure.” Robert awkwardly laughed as he avoided the topic.
The desert night was quiet and peaceful without a soul to be seen. As they got further away from Hadithah, the occasional explosions started to fade as well. But within the quiet night sky, a short burst of homing noise could be heard once in awhile.
“F-22, it’s probably the UA doing scouting missions. Maybe we are already on the heat map.” Robert lifted his head.
“Oh? Would the UA soldiers jump out and save you?” Jiang Chen smiled.
“No way. We are only a white dot on the heat map. There are plenty of refugees in the desert. The good thing is that there is no weapon on the back of the car or some bullets may have flown down.” Robert laughed at the remark.
Jiang Chen gazed at the distant sky. The clouds were thin, and the moon was bright. But even in the moonlight, he couldn’t see anything.
“I don’t understand. I feel the IS soldiers are not that strong. With the airstrikes of so many nations, why would they not eradicate this problem already?” Jiang Chen did not have the slightest positive feeling about this group.
It has nothing to do with politics nor nationality. From a purely human perspective, any group that killed civilians and raped women are hideous and hated. For whatever reason, it cannot justify the crime against humanity.
He wanted to laugh at the crazy group that said so many laughable claims, but he couldn’t.
“It’s normal.” Robert shrugged, “IS is not simply just a terrorist group. It’s a frightening army combined with an ambitious government. A lot of them even received higher education and elite training which taught them how to avoid airstrike and scouting. Also, their opponents have their own personal agendas. Take Turkey, for example, their stance on IS was never clear.”
At that moment, Robert also smiled dubiously.
“Also, if the war ended this quickly, how would we feed ourselves? How would the unemployment rate go down?”
Jiang Chen thought about it as he laughed.
He was right.
Who cared, the Middle East was far from Hua.
But for some reason, he constantly remembered the world that had fallen apart because of the nuclear war.
The world where even the sun in the middle of a summer day could not cast its ray through the thick radiation cloud. The world where not a single piece of grain grew, and a world where millions of twisted faces instinctively practiced violence.
Jiang Chen suddenly felt a chillness, he tried to wrap himself tighter with his clothes.
The desert night was a bit too chill.