Author's Note: Ok, I've broken this one chapter into three cause I thought it was a little long. Enjoy.
The bullet whistled through the night air. Small, invisible shockwaves were left behind as the atmosphere got pushed aside to make room for the tiny, speeding piece of deadly lead. It traveled at speeds only the heavy machine gun that fired it could have given it. The gunpowder that had propelled the bullet now spread out through the air in a grayish puff of smoke barely visible in the moonlight. The flame that had preceded the smoke cloud had already faded into nothingness, the flash of heat leaving almost as quickly. But that deadly bullet still flew through the air. If it had been able to see and if it had a brain to comprehend what it saw, the bullet would have known it was heading towards the wall of a mud hut, a hut identical to every single other hut in the village.
The Village was a rebel village in the mountains of old Russia. The rebels in the village had fled to the mountains after Putin had issued orders for all rebels to be shot on sight. The rebels had brought their families along with them, in fear that upon knowing the identities of the rebels, their families would be harmed in retaliation. Unfortunately, they were all about to die.
The bullet finished its deadly flight, smashing into the mud wall, collapsing the entire rickety hut, trapping the people inside. The dozens of bullets that followed the first one began to pierce the trapped people's bodies, spraying blood over the ruins of the tiny hut. All around the original machine gun that had fired, nearly a dozen more opened up on the other huts. The trio of tanks this small army unit had brought with them opened fire on the main hall that the rebels had laboriously constructed, decimating it with their first volley.
It took less then a minute for the entire hamlet to be annihilated underneath the relentless onslaught of the Russian military unit. The rebels had never had a chance. Not a single one had even gotten a shot off in resistance. The Russian military commander looked around the sight, searching for any signs of remaining life. After a bit, he lowered his machine gun and motioned for the others in the unit to do likewise. Hitting the power on his radio, the Commander switched frequencies to that of his Battalion headquarters.
"God, this is Shadow. The rebel village has been eliminated. No casualties were sustained. Requesting permission to return to base."
"Shadow, this is God. We read you loud and clear. Congratulations on the kills. Come on home."
"Thanks God. We'll be back in a couple of hours."
Quickly, the Commander switched frequencies back to his unit. "Alright people, we are clear to base. Let's move out!"
The leaves and twigs crumpled under the bare feet of the runner. The jungle all around him came to life, as if the animals could sense the danger the boy ran from. Birds squawked and vacated the jungle's canopy with an unprecedented speed. The boy kept running, seemingly oblivious to everything going on around him, only concentrating on escaping the terror that was slowly gaining behind him.
The boy stopped. Through all the noise in the jungle, the boy listened for his pursuit. At first, he did not proceed, as he failed to hear anything behind him. Then, suddenly and without warning, the dense foliage was shoved aside to make way for an armored personnel carrier. Turning, the boy sprinted as fast as he could, praying that his friends were waiting to ambush the armored vehicle. He prayed without success.
The gunner manning the machine gun on top of the vehicle opened fire. I trio of bullets leapt forth through the short lived burst of flame. One after another, the three shots pierced the boys back, knocking him to the ground, struggling for life. It took him just a few seconds to die from his mortal wounds. The armored personnel carrier rolled to a halt mere meters from the boy's corpse.
The driver of the armored personnel carrier hopped out. He walked the short distance to the boy's corpse and stared at it for a moment. Then he bent down, checked for a pulse, and, finding none, kicked the corpse over. Staring up at him was the face of the small boy, eyes open wide in horror, as if realizing in his last moments that he was dying and he couldn't do a thing about it.
A small smile of satisfaction crept across the driver's face. Turning his back to the boy, the driver hopped back into his vehicle. Addressing the Sergeant sitting next to him, the driver started to speak in perfect Korean. "When we get back to base in Seoul, we need to get a box of cigars for the platoon. Once we kill a hundred rebels, we'll have a victory smoke."
The Sergeant smiled. "Yes, Lieutenant Hyachi."
Through the streets of Xiamen ran the rebel sympathizer. Having been discovered by his military unit to have been passing information onto the rebels, the man had been forced to flee. If he could get enough of a head start, he could lose himself in Xiamen's one and a quarter million residents. He kept running, passing hundreds of pedestrians and seeing the blurred images of speeding cars rushing through the mostly empty streets of the city.
The rebel had a friend at Xiamen's University. Taking out his cell phone, the sympathizer quickly called his friend, the last man in Xiamen he could still turn to for help.
"Chi Wang, I need your help. They have discovered me. I do not know how, but I must ask that you shelter me from the search parties until I can find a way out of the city. Can I count on you?" When the man on the other end said yes, the sympathizer hung up and resumed running, this time with a purpose.
The man ran in the direction of Xiamen's main University, situated right on the Sea of China. It took him no more than five minutes of hard running to get there. He didn't see a single soldier the whole way. Rushing into campus and up a flight of stairs, the sympathizer slowed down enough to slip quietly into the main library. He needed a little time to catch his breath and collect his thoughts before searching for his friend's room.
He found a back corner with a chair and desk situated to look out the window onto the glistening blue surface of the endless Sea. Sitting down, the man took a moment to catch his breath and take in the beauty, momentarily forgetting all about his many troubles. He sat there for many minutes, just watching as a handful of small boats made their ways across the serene surface of the water.
Suddenly and without warning, he felt a small tap on his shoulder. He jumped out of his seat and whirled around to face the man behind him. Quickly taking control of himself, the sympathizer realized it was only a college student. The student spoke to him in Mandarin.
"Excuse me good sir. I noticed that you are not using your desk, and only the chair. I have some work to do for Astrology and all the other desks are being used. May I please use yours? There are some chairs without desks that are still empty."
The sympathizer nodded, not trusting himself to speak. He was still shaken up from being startled like that, even though he knew there was no immediate danger. He walked away, not really paying attention to the student as he took the now vacant seat and desk. Instead of going to one of the seats without desks as the student had suggested, the sympathizer moved out of the library, hoping to find the dorm of his friend.
The sympathizer found a small map of the campus at a nearby kiosk. On the map he saw what looked like the biggest of all the dorm rooms. He decided to check out that one first, as it was most likely to have his friend in it. He started running, hoping to be outside as little as possible to avoid snipers. He hoped that the presence of a large crowd would deter his pursuers from making a scene. However, unfortunately for him, as he turned the corner of one of the buildings, he came face to face with the wrong end of a pistol.
Xiamen's college was huge, and the sympathizer found it difficult to believe they could have found him so easily. It was all explained by the man next to the gun holder. It was his University friend, and he was holding up a cell phone. Not only did how they track him become clear, but so did how he was discover to be a rebel sympathizer. His friend had betrayed him, and the soldiers had tracked him using his phone. So much for having true friends.
He was left with nothing to think as the bullet shattered his skull besides the treacherous act of his friend that had spelled his downfall.
The shooter lowered his gun, seemingly oblivious to the screams of the pedestrians and university students. All his attention was focused on the corpse of his former comrade. After a long moment of reflection, he turned to the dead sympathizer's friend.
"Thank you, Chi Wang." Without another word, he raised the gun again and put a bullet between Wang's eyes. No loose ends could be left untied. He raised his communicator to his mouth. "Base, the traitor is dead. The package is wrapped. I'm heading back to base."