Mercenary Black Mamba - Chapter 240
“It’s the Third Airborne Brigade known as the elites. As Assad’s bodyguards, they’re well-trained and equipped with tanks and helicopters. If the situation was reported in time, they must be ready to move out.”
“Hm, if only I had some explosives…”
Black Mamba went inside the storage room. The Ruman plan, which he’d thought would end quickly, entered a new phase. The plan had developed into one of a larger scale.
Who do I toll the bell for?
Suddenly, he questioned why he made the difficult choice. It was a question that had remained since the Sahel. What was the reason behind his reaction towards the biological and chemical weapons? It was as though a thorn got stuck in his throat. He’d completed his job. All he had to do was return and take a long rest.
Was it his caring nature? Well, he did care too much. He couldn’t overlook a problem once it lingered in his mind. He had felt compassionate on a whim. He wasn’t a philanthropist, and neither was he a devoted Greenpeace member.
The biological and chemical weapons were a completely different problem from Wael in Gobelaka Village. It was not his concern whether Assad had missiles, biological, or chemical weapons. If it was used against the citizens of Syria, it came at the expense of electing the wrong leader. If Israel was accused, it would be akin to declaring war between the two countries. If it was launched in Turkey, it would symbolize the deep-rooted hatred between ethnicities. Whatever happened, it would be considered political. In the first place, it was not even his problem.
Was it for the money?
Of course, money was important, but he’d already earned enough to last him a lifetime. The gold and dollars buried underneath those rocks added up to almost 10,000,000,000 won. He could buy 50 of his uncle’s Good Heart Lodgings with 10,000,000,000 won. It wasn’t about the money.
Was it about the land?
He preferred land over money, but that wasn’t it either. Frankly, what could he do with a land the size of Gyeonggi-do in the northern regions of Chad? It was nothing but a bag of gold that would give him all kinds of troubles. Then why did he want that treasure?
Suddenly, the back of his head rang as though it had been shot. Did he have any ambition? He couldn’t think of any apart from his personal wishes. He hoped to find his mother, build a large house, and invite Mina and Ha Dong’s family to live happily with him.
He wanted more people to be happy. He wanted to leave a mark in the world. That was ambition. His wishes had evolved into ambitions. The small seeds had grown into a watermelon. If he didn’t have any ambition, he would have retired immediately after his return from Chad. He wouldn’t have to send Ombuti and Edel to Chad’s northern regions. That had all been a sign of greed, to leave a mark of his existence in the world. In philosophical and pedantic terms, it was greed, a desire for self-actualization.
“Ah, this is why teacher said I lacked the foundations of Buddhism! Ambition is also a condition of being human!” An exclamation escaped him.
His father had birthed him, and his mother had raised him. His teacher had humanized him. His teacher was aware of his student’s ambitions and didn’t prepare him for a Buddhist initiation ritual.
His wish to live with his mother had also extended to Ha Dong Daek’s family and Mina. There were a lot of Ha Dong Daek, Mina, and mothers in the world. There were a lot of Jang, Kim Dal Su, and Bae too. He wanted them to remain hopeful and be an exemplar of how working hard could improve their lives. He wanted his family to sit around the dining table in peace. Everything would happen as his heart desired if he gave everything he had. There was no reason to forcibly stop his determination.
“Oooooo! I’m Dong-bang-bull-pae, Mu Ssang!”
A grand howling echoed around Kaparja’s cliffs amidst the heavy rain. His frustrated mind cleared instantly.
Jamal, who had been dozing off against a pile of concrete, woke up in a startle. Jamal suffered mental and physical shocks all night, unable to rest. He was about to lose his mind. He desperately needed rest.
“Jamal, let’s take a break and look at the situation. Is there a good location?”
“Yes, there is. There are a few caves on the slopes of the cliffs inside the valley that people can access. Master, you’d be able to climb easily.”
Jamal widened his eyes as if to say he hadn’t gotten enough rest. Black Mamba nodded. There were caves on the cliff face above the missile storage rooms.
“Let’s go. My nose will spoil if I stay here any longer.”
Dark clouds gathered. Syria’s north-western region was within the Fertile Crescent region. The yearly precipitation in Damascus was around 200 millimeters and around 800 millimeters in the Kaparja region. Under the influence of the Mediterranean climate, regional torrential rains were unusually common in August and September.
Suddenly, it started pouring. The burning flames died down instantly.
Lightning flashed between the dark clouds, followed by thunder. Was it Allah’s wrath? Was it the resentment of the countless people who had lost their bodies? 100s of lightning bolts hit the ground.
Kaparja Valley was an area frequently visited by lightning. Buildings crumbled, and lightning bolts disappeared. Metal weapons worth 200,000 pyungs were scattered amongst Aloadin’s ruins.
Suddenly, a thick lightning bolt split and was absorbed into the ground.
A strange explosion was heard. A secondary electricity loss occurred. High-voltage electricity traveled through the rainwater. Ruman illuminated in white.
Jamal fell to his knees. The land of honor, Ruman, which the Old Man of the Mountain—Aloadin—had created, garnered God’s wrath. He raised both of his arms into the air and shouted.
“Oh, Allah! The cursed land of blood that was blessed by Sir Ddu-bai-buru-pa, Allah welcomes the baptism of blood. With this, it is proven that Sir Ddu-bai-buru-pa is Allah’s apostle! Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar!”
“Jeez, these humans live and die by Allah.”
Black Mamba, who was momentarily distracted by the grand sight of rain and lightning, grabbed the back of Jamal’s collar and ran. They would’ve turned into roast had he been a moment late.
The Kaparja Valley was part of the Great Rift Valley, which continued from Syria’s plains to Mozambique at 4,800 kilometers on a moving fault zone. As if it had been cut out with an ax, it was located on a highland 500 meters above sea level. There were many caves along the fault zone filled with metamorphic and limestone rocks.
It was 100 kilometers south of the Euphrates River, and there weren’t many water sources around, but the water flowing out from the fault zones had created torrents. The valley’s water increased rapidly due to the rain. When faced with snow and rain during outdoor missions, one’s body temperature would fall, and the body’s metabolism would slow down. He had to avoid the rain.
Black Mamba stopped in front of a cliff, which was impossible to climb without the appropriate climbing gears. The cave above the 80 meters overhang was his target.
Jamal’s face darkened. It was already a difficult cliff to climb, but the rain had to pour too. He didn’t dare dream of climbing up the slippery cliff.
“Ma…master, this place won’t do,” Jamal said in a fearful manner.
He had been completely subdued by the vertically steep cliff. It was a cliff that even Aloadin’s warriors hadn’t dared to climb. The 150 meters vertical cliff had no gaps for finger or foot placement. On top of that, it was raining heavily. His master had amazing abilities, but this wasn’t it.
“Jamal, get on my back.”
“How could I?” Jamal stepped back in surprise.
“There’s not enough time. If we stay around, the guards will detect us on their radar.”
“Uck!” Jamal shouted.
He was lifted and thrown over Black Mamba’s backpack like a dance.
Metamorphic rocks endured extreme heat during its formation. Even if the cliff looked smooth, the surface was rocky in close view. It wasn’t easy for an average human to climb with bare hands, but it was effortless for Black Mamba.
He could support his entire weight with one finger and shove it through a slot as small as a toothpick. The alternating wall around wall skill, which copied the movements of a lizard, did not require any cliff-climbing equipment like xiles, slings, harnesses, or plugs. The large lizard attached itself to the slippery cliff. Soon, his left and right limbs started moving rhythmically as he climbed up the cliff without hesitation.
Jamal, who was on top of his backpack, clung onto the gracious Sir Ddu-bai-buru-pa’s neck to avoid his death. He was on the verge of peeing. He didn’t have the leisure to think about anything else. He wanted to slap his own mouth for recommending a cave as their resting place. Black Mamba, who climbed 80 meters instantly with his bare hands, wrapped the Gorgon around the overhang and rode on its rebound.
“Kuuugh!” Jamal shouted as he held his breath.
His soul left his body as they sprang into the sky from far up the cliff. Black Mamba, who instantly landed on the overhang, jumped into the dark entrance of the cave. Although Black Mamba did all the work, Jamal was the one frothing at the mouth by the cave’s floor.
It was a limestone cave large enough for people to stand and move in. He hadn’t seen the cave from below as it was covered by the overhang.
The sound of flowing water came from within the cave. The cave was damp. When he rubbed his palm against the cave’s surface, water came off. The dampness wasn’t comfortable, but anyone who left home suffered anyway.
It wasn’t the sound of rain coming from outside the cave, but the sound of bats flapping their wings. The owner of the cave was displeased with its intruders. Its flight was silent, but it had to flap its wings in small spaces like caves.
He’d sensed countless life forces the moment he jumped into the cave, but he wanted to remain as peaceful as possible. The owner of the cave wasn’t receptive to the idea at all.
“The owner’s not welcoming its guests.”
Black Mamba drew out his Gorgon. Bats weren’t aggressive, but some species attacked when its area was invaded. There was no reason to touch them if they didn’t attack, but if they did, he didn’t have a choice.
A swarm of bats flew out. Countless red eyes flashed in the air. He wouldn’t die from being bitten by a bat, but its bacteria could contaminate his body. If he was unlucky, he could get rabies.
The Gorgon shook once in the air. He was planning to scare them away, but the bats took it differently.
When a person rushed in, 100s of them followed.
The cave was filled with the sound of bats flapping its wings.
The Gorgon drew circles in the air. A funnel-shaped formation appeared before Black Mamba.
Splat splat splat—
A whirlwind of blood appeared in the air. The bats’ broken wings and body parts fell to the ground like rain.
When half of its kind was sacrificed, the remaining bats simultaneously retreated into the cave.
The Gorgon raised another whirlwind. The bats’ corpses were blown into the deeper parts of the cave. Jamal could only watch with his mouth agape. What couldn’t his master do? He couldn’t help but be surprised every time he saw something unimaginable.
The guest, who chased the owner away, pulled out a tarp from his backpack and threw it at Jamal.
“It’s a nice place. The reinforcements will have a difficult time getting through the rain. Meanwhile, take a good nap.”
Black Mamba opened his sleeping bag and climbed in. Exactly three seconds later, the sound of snoring was heard.
Jamal gathered his remaining energy to resist his heavy eyelids from closing. He didn’t know if the bats would disturb his master’s sleep or if the situation would change outside. He was a servant who had to protect his master.
In the end, Jamal was defeated by the devil of sleep after struggling with his eyelids for a long time. For someone who didn’t know about Black Mamba’s sensitive senses, Jamal had misplaced his confidence by trying to stay awake.
The explosion of the 4,000 kilograms high-explosive bombs shook the active fault zone. The pouring rain leaked into the cracks.
An unusual movement occurred in the deep underground. No one knew what happened. The Asian enjoyed his sleep with his wings spread open while the Arab enjoyed his sleep crouched in a corner.
On August 20th, 15:00, the sixth day of the Ruman Plan.
Black Mamba’s eyes flashed open. The sound of rotors echoed through the heavy rain. Syria’s north-western regions had a rough terrain. Although there was no famous mountain, the terrain had developed flatlands between the highland mountains and rocky mountains.
For a tank to approach Kaparja, it had to travel through the flatlands and mountains, which were now muddy. Although it was barely 75 kilometers away, it took at least a day to reach Kaparja. The helicopter was for surveillance.
The sound of its rotor rang as though it was splitting through the air and rain. It was the unique rotor sound of the Hind, called Satan’s Carriage. The Mi-24 Hind attack helicopter could withstand 7.62 millimeters bullets, and its lower fuselage equipped with titanium plate boasted durability against 12.7 millimeters mortars. It had a range of 450 kilometers, but it could fly up to 800 kilometers with lesser equipment and fuel tanks.
Black Mamba raised his binoculars. At a distance of four kilometers, the Hind attack model with its tandem-style piloting and first-generation Side-by-Side Hind was flying. The Mi-24P attack model was equipped with a strong four-turn Gatling gun and two 30 millimeters GSh-30K machine guns. It was a formidable opponent.
“It seems like there’s a chance for me to use that stupid heavy gun.”
Black Mamba looked down and smiled at Jamal, who was hugging the Barrett in his sleep.
“Jamal, there’s a guest.”
At the silent warning, Jamal opened his eyes and flung his body down. It was a response befitting of a prior terrorist.
“There are two Satan Carriages.”
“It seems like the helicopters only came because of the rain, sir. I’m looking forward to future sightings.” Jamal smiled as he attached a magazine to the Barrett and handed it forward with both hands.
He looked amused despite the appearance of the two attack helicopters, which were considered devils to the ground soldiers.
It was difficult for a Dragunov to pierce a heavily armed Hind. It was said that the Barrett could pierce a 34 millimeters iron plate at a distance of 500 meters and a 23 millimeters plate at a distance of 1,200 meters. Now was a good opportunity to test out the power of the Barrett, which he’d only heard about.
Black Mamba leaned against the cave wall and shifted into a sniping position. He turned the scope to test out the focus.
“Woah, the scope’s amazing.”
When he aligned the focus on his target, the distance was automatically marked on its lower right. It was a remarkable piece of technology. At this rate, it seemed like a dog or cow could become snipers too.
Destroy the Muslim Brotherhood who attacked Kaparja valley.
Upon receiving such an order, Hassan headed to Kaparja valley in the mood for a picnic.