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Sooho Novel Chapter 115
Michael’s death was Ahn Soo Ho’s responsibility.
‘I don’t know what to say to his family.’
Michael’s parents and siblings still lived in Arkansas. Among the mercenaries Ahn Soo Ho brought around, Logan was the only one that gained his reputation in a normal way. The rest were all lacking in one way or another. Mercenaries were individualists. But one day after they completed a mission and looked up at the moon, they all talked about their own uninteresting lives.
It was like a competition of who lived a harder life. But then again, if they lived normal lives they wouldn’t have been mercenaries, to begin with. Every person had their own story. Then what was Michael Lee Devon’s story? Before his ancestors moved to Louisiana, they were people from France. After that, they settled down in Arkensaw and started farming.
The reason why Michael decided to hold a gun was largely because of the 911 terror attack. When he entered the Marines, he was outstanding in terms of physique, but he was deemed unfit mentally. In military society, getting worked up over a little bit of blood was fatal. When Michael failed to enter the Marines, he entered a private military company.
“When I first met Michael… he seemed nice. He was so nice, I wasn’t sure if he could ever hold a gun. But once he went in there, he changed completely.”
“Like the Hulk?”
“Yeah, like the Hulk. Just like crazy Dr. Banner, he became brave as soon as he saw real blood. The problem was…”
“He was too brave for his own good.”
No one wanted to trust their own backs with a crazy person. Michael was fired from PMC. And it was 2008 during the Sudan war when he met Ahn Soo Ho. South Sudan had become independent now, but back then, Arabian militia swept the entire nation.
“I was wondering if a white man came to the battlefield to die, but he turned out to be a war mercenary hired by South Sudan.”
Not even the States who had the best police force want to get involved in African civil wars. Same went for private military companies. Mercenaries liked money, but none of them liked to go where they were guaranteed to die. That was how dark the Sudan civil war was. The reason for the severity of African wars was because of the country’s harsh natural conditions, but child soldiers were another major reason.
“Michael was a crazy little bastard, but he didn’t do it to shoot little kids.”
“No one wants to shoot kids.”
“No, some people are crazy enough to do that.”
There was no such thing as a clean and mannerly war.
All wars were messy. Brutal things happened, especially in hidden places. Compared to the African civil war, the Vietnam war, which was considered one of the worst war caused by the States, was nothing. Because of the war correspondents who were trying to expose the truth, the American military controlled themselves, and in Africa where there were no reporters to be found, people couldn’t say a word of protest even when they were being slaughtered like livestock.
“Come to think of it, Michael played well with kids despite not looking like the type.”
“Yes, he also donated to UNICEF every year.”
“It’s ironic, isn’t it?”
Did he die to a kid because he loved them so much? While Ahn Soo Ho thought about Michael and tried to comfort himself, James came back.
“It’s only temporary, but we received a definite answer for a special agent, Soo Ho.”
“The president’s special advisor?”
“That’s the highest rank that can be made out of the blue. But we have priority.”
“By we… do you mean to say you’ve returned?”
“If you’re switching needles, shouldn’t the thread follow it? Haha.”
James laughed loudly.
He saluted as a joke. James Black was a patriot, but seeing how he was being silly while New York was being attacked, he wasn’t a normal man either. Once Ahn Soo Ho got in the main building, he looked for Han Chae Kyung, and Kim Chang Hee followed him with a set menu.
“Did I startle you?”
“No, I’m fine. I’m the one who should be apologizing.”
No matter the reason, Michael stayed behind to protect Han Chae Kyung.
“That was his fate. What can we do? There are no warnings in life. You know that.”
“Yes, I do.”
Han Chae Kyung remembered getting dragged away by the police as a murder suspect. She was more surprised than feeling wronged. She got to experience first hand what it felt like to be so angry that she felt calm. Ahn Soo Ho took a good look at her. Normal women would have been crying like crazy, but she acted like it was just an average day.
She definitely had a problem with emotional expression.
“I want to send you back to Korea, but I can’t do it immediately. Did you contact your family?”
“Yes, Mr. Sam helped me call.”
The New York terrorist attack was probably being live broadcasted all over the world. Since another horrible incident took place in New York after the 911 attack, everyone except those in America were probably jumping in their seats. Ahn Soo Ho also called his family, girlfriend, and friends to tell them that he was okay. At the same time, he told Logan and his underlings about Michael.
Han Chae Kyung hesitated and then started talking.
“I have a proposal for you, Uncle.”
“What is it?”
“Can we make this house a shelter?”
Ahn Soo Ho knitted his brows. Not because he didn’t like the idea, but because he contemplated how to handle the security. He knew he couldn’t talk her out of it, and it was up to the owner of the house whether she wanted the house to become a shelter or not.
“It’ll be uncomfortable though.”
“That’s okay. Everyone’s having a hard time right now.”
He was proud of her, but she probably wasn’t doing it out of pure intention either. If they made their house into a shelter, rumors were bound to spread not only about Han Chae Kyung but about Kim Na Hee too.
“Okay, then. Oh yeah. Are you only going to accept Korean people?”
“No, we can’t do that. We’ll accept whoever comes. Oh, and don’t worry about the supplies. There’s lots of food that’s been stocked up for parties.”
She was the kind of woman who knew how to handle her own work. Ahn Soo Ho nodded and then went outside. He saw Ricky and Samuel.
“You know, right? Don’t fail this time.”
“We’ll do whatever it takes to find that kid, Soo Ho.”
“Okay. I’ll trust you with it then.”
Ahn Soo Ho shook his hands and then left the house. As soon as he got onto the helicopter, James Black handed him a headset.
“Some of the communication networks have been restored.”
“What about electricity?”
“Just some of it.”
The areas that the terrorists targeted were lower Manhattan and midtown Manhattan. In the end, the entire city was affected, but the center areas of Manhattan were a lot more concentrated. The biggest difficulty of street battles was finding the enemy. If they did the best they could at hiding, they had no choice but initiate a large-scale siege attack.
“Apparently, New York’s police went in but all got killed. Their firepower is like…”
“How could they bring military equipment to the streets of New York? They not only have automatic weapons, but they have stinger missiles, too. The ATFs don’t stand a chance.”
“Stingers, too? How did they get their hands on missiles as well?”
“They might have gotten them from the Black Market. But the way I see it, they probably took them from the discarded pile.”
There were expiry dates to weapons, so the American military discarded large amounts of weapons. People might wonder why they throw them all away, but if they hadn’t, it would have affected the production numbers. The biggest buyer of weapons was definitely the American forces.
“I have a friend at DOD Inspection, and apparently, there’s been a lot of weapons going missing at the disposal site.”
“I bet the hearing had something to do with that.”
“A lot of necks are on the line because of this.”
As soon as the helicopter took off, they were able to see New York on fire. The situation got worse as the night drew on. And it wasn’t just the terrorists that caused a fuss in New York.
“Apparently, President Davis just proclaimed martial law.”
The time had come.
“The national guard will be dispatched first.”
“What about Homeland Security?”
“The national security aide doesn’t trust the relationship between organizations. They think of NSA and CIA as their enemies. That just makes it difficult for NIS who’s stuck in the middle.”
The conflict between America’s intelligence agency and the other investigation organizations weren’t going to change for 100s and 1000s of years unless the country went under.
“There are three areas that are suspected to be hosting our enemies. They dispatched the most police on Wall Street, so it’s stable there, and there was an explosion at the UN office, but it hasn’t been occupied. Lastly… Macy’s is left.”
“The department store?”
The northeast corridor that connected the major cities of the East Coast was one of the busiest railways, so it was naturally very populated as well. And Macy’s was a department store that was located right in front of it.
“A street battle is taking place at Macy’s and Pennsylvania Station. But there’s an even bigger problem.”
James pulled out a laptop that was very thick. There were men wearing Jihad warrior uniforms and talking about something.
“They’re not just any old hostages. They’re famous people who were invited from various countries.”
“Why were they at a department store? Did they come to shop as a group?”
“Apparently, Macy’s and Victoria’s Secret spend quite a bit of money this time.”
“That happens during Christmas time.”
“Oh, how did you know that? You’re right. But they pulled it back around the time when the advertising festival was happening.”
Of course, he knew. There were actually many mercenaries who were obsessed with lingerie fashion shows.
“So it was intentional.”
“I’m going to investigate everything that seems suspicious even though it’s not my job.”
The fact that those famous people weren’t brought to shelters despite knowing that a big attack in New York was going to happen proved that those famous people didn’t have much power despite being well-known to the public. In other words, they were cheap. But no matter how cheap they were, they were still famous people, and their deaths were going to be as impactful as a Tsunami.
The helicopter dropped Ahn Soo Ho off at Times Square. At central park was a shelter made for those who managed to escape the endangered areas, and the inside of the building that stopped James’ steps was no different from a battlefield despite it being quiet. As soon as he was about to get grabbed by the throat, he pulled out his gun and shot it.
Those around him either crouched over or put up their guns as well. He didn’t care and just put his gun back on his belt. James looked at the people around him and smiled.
“I’m sure you all know who I am!”
Special operations that required the military couldn’t leave out James Black.
“Homeland Security? NSA? DEA? DIA? NYPD? Lastly, that damned FBI and CIA!”
James called out each organization and then stuck up his middle finger at those from the CIA and FBI. Despite it being a serious situation, some people laughed.
“Old men will probably join us soon but until then, I’m in charge here! So please!”
Since martial law was put forward, many men were going to be dispatched soon. But for now, James Black was the one in charge.
“Shut the fuck up!”
He once again stuck up his middle finger at those from the FBI and CIA. As soon as it became quiet, James was satisfied. At that very moment, a report came in.
“There’s a signal!”
It was footage from someone’s body cam.
“As a former government official, I’ll warn you! Please listen carefully!”
James Black liked to stress the word “former”.
“We’re capable of resolving our own problems. However, it’s highly likely that you were called to the Senate hearing or was fired. Why, you ask? Because that’s our system. What can you do?”
He looked at Adam Laroche’s frowning face and continued.
“So if a problem arises that you don’t think you can solve, please look for that person who’s filming that footage. Then your problems will be solved. I guarantee that. I’m sure it’s not just one or two necks that are on the line. Am I right?”
The people’s gazes immediately turned to the body cam footage, and someone mumbled.
“Code name, Wizard.”
That name had been banned in American intelligence agencies.
James put on his headset as soon as he heard Ahn Soo Ho’s voice over the speaker.
“Hey, friend! We’re all set!”
The body cam footage moved in between buildings. The horrible sight made one person cover their eyes and another shriek. The surrounding areas of Macy’s were as tense as it could ever be. The police, who gave up on entering the department store because of the hostages, put up a wall and confronted the terrorists.
Ahn Soo Ho then said, “Let’s begin.”
< Protect – Episode 114 – Code Name Wizard  > The end.