A woman, hands tied behind her back, a cloth around her eyes and mouth, sits in the back of a semi-truck with five other people who seem to be in the same position as her. There are 4 men with them; they all have weapons. The only source of light in the gigantic cargo trailer is a small red light, making the men’s faces glow with a dim red. A loud siren can be heard from outside the cargo trailer, probably from the building the truck seems to be heading to. A man next to the girl is muffling through the cloth that has been placed around his mouth, struggling to get the attention of one of the men. After a few more muffles later, a man finally notices and walks up to him. The man then quickly yanked the guy’s cloth down and yelled, “What is it?”
“Ple-please sir, tell me why I’m here?” the man desperately asks in Russian.
“I’m sorry, I don’t speak your language,” the man said in English as he put the cloth back on the guy’s mouth. The truck suddenly stopped as voices could be heard outside, the woman put her ear against the cargo wall and could make out a few words.
“Hey, how’s it going today?” the driver of the truck asked in Russian.
“Fine, is this the delivery for the parts that were meant to be here an hour ago?” another man outside of the truck asked in Russian.
“Yes, my apologies we were running a little late due to traffic; my buddy here also dropped food on himself so we had to stop and get him a change of clothes.”
“Interesting,” the man said in a skeptical voice while trying to hold back a chuckle, “so do you mind if my friend and I check the back of your truck?”
“Do you have to?” the driver asked as he gripped tighter on the stirring wheel. The man outside of the truck looked at the driver, he stood there in silence before his laugh began to break the cold and intense atmosphere, “That was a hilarious joke, Dmitri, check the back of their truck will you?”
“Yes sir, Nazar,” Dmitri said in Russian as he walked to the back of the truck and proceeded to remove the latch to the cargo trailer. The 4 men looked at each other before looking back and aiming their guns.
“You know why they’re sounding an alarm, right?” Nazar asked the driver.
“No, I don’t,” he responded.
“Ah, well to be honest it’s not that exciting; they’re testing their alarms and seeing if they work properly, you know the standard stuff.”
“Ah, that seems uh... interesting,” he said while squeezing his steering wheel even tighter and giving out a nervous chuckle, one that was out of fear and anticipation.
“I knew there were going to be a lot of parts but I wasn’t expecting 3 semi-trucks worths,” Nazar stated as he lit up a cigarette.
“Well, tanks are pretty big weapons.”
Nazar then paused and looked up at the driver, he squinted his eyes, as if he was trying to examine him. “Hey, you look familiar; I didn’t get your name again, what was it?” Nazar asked. Within seconds multiple gunshots could be heard, the men inside the cargo fired off their guns and killed Dmitri. Nazar quickly looked over and saw Dmitri’s body fall. “Well, many people have called me different names, but you... you can call me, Death.” Nazar’s cigarette fell out of his mouth as he focused his gaze back on the driver, he reached for his holster in an attempt to pull out his gun. Death then quickly grabbed his weapon from under his seat and shot Nazar in between his eyes.
The truck suddenly started driving again, this time much faster, Death was unaware that a group of Russian none-government-contracted guards had witnessed this. 3 cars quickly pulled up in front of the semi-trucks and multiple Russian officers came out. They used their doors as cover and leaned their weapons on the top of them. “Shit! Get the hostages!” Death screamed as he got out of his vehicle and aimed his assault rifle at the cops. Death’s crew quickly followed along and proceeded to aim their guns at the officers.
“Put your weapons down or we will fire!” one of the cops yelled in Russian. After a few moments went by, a man walked up to Death and handed him a hostage. It was a woman that looked to be of Asian descent, she was crying, most likely due to the gun that was resting on her temple.
“We got hostages! If you don’t do what we say we’ll start offing them! Starting with this pretty little Asian right here,” Death said as he pushed the gun harder into her head. “Listen, we don’t want to hurt anyone! And we sure as hell don’t want to kill no cops, this is a war you’re not apart of so just back the fuck off!”
The officers silently spoke to each other from a distance, most likely debating on what they should do. Suddenly, a storm of bullets started flying in their direction. One of the guys had assumed the officers were about to open fire and decided to shoot off the machine gun that was mounted to the semi-truck. The cops then began to open fire; within moments of the initial shooting, the crew, and the officers found themselves to be in a shoot out. After about 20 seconds of gunshots later, all of the officers were dead.
“Why the fuck did you do that!” Death screamed in English.
“I’m sorry sir, I thought they were going to fire,” Thomas replied in English.
“No, they weren’t you fucking imbecile! Ahh fuck it we don’t have the time, don’t think I’m forgetting this though, we’re gonna speak later you hear?”
“Yes sir!” Everyone got back into their trucks and drove closer to the building. Death stopped and so did the rest of the vehicles; he examined the front entrance, waiting to see if anyone would come out.
“Maybe they didn’t hear the shots, this alarm is awfully loud,” the passenger proposed to Death.
“Yeah, maybe. You got the explosives right?”
“Yes sir! Would you like me to gather up the bomb crew from truck C?”
“Yeah, make sure you’re cautious, I don’t know what these fuckers could be scheming,” Death said while examining the bulletproof glass of the building. The passenger named Dominick Levitt got out of the truck and began signaling to the bomb squad. As the bomb squad grabbed their equipment and started heading to the door, one of the men looked above and spotted a glare on the roof. Seconds after, a bullet went right through his head. Dominick froze in fear as he watched the man’s body fall to the floor, and then another bullet came flying in his direction.
Followed by hundreds of other bullets that started piercing through the trucks, a man was operating a heavy machine gun on top of the building. The men inside the cargo trailers were getting torn open by projectiles, including some of the hostages. Dominick finally snapped himself out of the panic state he was in and ran as fast as he could back to the vehicle as Death quickly radioed everyone to follow him. He then pressed his feet as hard as possible on the gas and made his way to the other side of the building, free from gunfire. The driver and passenger in truck B were killed, as truck C follows truck A, one of the last survivors of truck B was able to crawl out of the cargo trailer where he then shot and killed the machine gunner. He began rushing to catch up with the crew on foot. Death finally came to a stop and asked, “Are you alright, Dominick?”
“Yeah, I’m fine, just a bit shocked.”
“Alright, go check up on the rest of the crew, count our losses.”
Dominick looked at the rearview mirror and saw a man running towards them.
“Hey Death, we got a man running on us to our right!” Dominick said while gripping his gun. Death jumped out and aimed his weapon at the man, he was about to fire until he saw who it was.
“Hold your fire! Hold your fire! It’s me!” the man from truck B yelled. “I killed them, sir, I killed the gunner.”
Both Death and Dominick were shocked by this news, Death looked to Dominick and said, “Check our losses, but fast, and let everyone know we’re going to try and blow up the doors again.”
“Yes sir!” Dominick replied. He quickly finished up, he calculated the losses to be 3 hostages and 5 men; they both decided they had enough guys to go in for another attack. The only problem is they won’t have enough manpower as they originally did.
“Alright, men! On foot, go, go, go!” Death yelled while running to the front entrance, the other men soon followed. “Pass the explosives quick! We don’t have much time.”
Dominick snatched the explosives from one of the crew members and passed them onto Death, he then grabbed them and stuck them on the doors. “Get back!” Death yelled. He grabbed the detonator and got behind a vehicle for cover. Death and Dominick looked at each other before Dominick gave a nod, Death then looked down at the detonator and pressed the button, he held his ears and waited for the explosion. Seconds later a loud boom that shook the ground beneath the men occurred, followed by the sounds of glass shattering onto the floor. “Alright men, go go go!” Death yelled as he proceeded to sprint to the newly opened hole.
Death ran inside the building and witnessed 2 men running in his direction, he raised his gun and fired, killing both the men. The crew followed behind Death; as a Russian soldier came running with a knife, he was able to firmly grip one of the men. The soldier then pushed him against the wall and tried to stab him; another 3 soldiers burst into the room and began firing at the crew.
Thomas shot the soldier that was holding the crew member to the wall; another soldier ran up behind him and jumped on his back. Thomas flipped the soldier over his head and shot him 4 times, instantly killing him. Death and the others started firing upon the 3 other soldiers. One of them ran up to Death with another knife in an attempt to stab them but Death grabbed the knife and threw it out of his hands. He grabbed him and twirled the soldier around, using his body as a shield to finish off the remaining Russians.
“Please don’t kill me I’m a dad!” the soldier in Death’s arms cried out. Death looked at the soldier and felt sympathy, “you’re lucky I’m a nice guy,” he said before knocking him out with the butt of his gun. Another soldier popped out from behind a flipped-over table and shot one of Death’s crewmates, Grover. Death quickly shot and killed the guy and ran over to his crew member.
“Are you alright!” Death yelled as he observed his body on the floor.
“Sir, they shot me in my chest and stomach, I don’t think I’m going to make it.” He responded. Death looked over to the other guy’s, he then looked back at the dying man. “Alright look, we got to clear out that room before they ambush us again.” Death said as he gripped Grover’s hand, “John, you stay here and look after Grover, I and the rest will continue forward.”
“You’re going to be okay Grover, I’m gonna patch you up and we’re gonna get you home, you got that?” John said. Grover laughed and coughed up a little blood, “Sounds like a plan mate.”
“Hey Grover, I just want you to know that whatever happens, I’ll always remember you, alright?” Death said to Grover. Grover let out a tear and gave a smile before saying, “Gay,” and laughing. Death also laughed, but his laughs were cut short when George grabbed his shoulder.
“We oughta get going,” George stated. Death stood up and walked over to the doors as John pulled Grover off to the side.
“3, 2, 1!” Death kicks open the doors, the crewmates point their guns; they immediately open fire on the 2 men inside. They both get gunned down by the crew, leaving there to be one last door to open. “Alright men, the guy we’re after should be in there, you know what he looks like, do not kill him, is that understood?” Death whispered to the crew.
“Yes sir,” they whispered back.
Death kicked down the door with all of his force and all the men quickly ran inside, there at his desk, was the man they were looking for. The crew aimed their weapons at him and Death asked, “Are you Grigory Matveev?”
“I do not know of this ‘Grigory Matveev’ you speak of, but I’d be more than happy to refer you to our companies customer support if you have any questions,” Grigory sarcastically remarked in English as a smirk grew on his face.
“Well at least we won’t have to translate your shitty language, they call me Death, do you know why we’re here Grigory?”
Grigory laughed, “I know who you are... Dwayne Hodson, I like the nickname, Death, it suits you well for a Brit.”
“I see you do know me then.” Death said with a smirk.
“I know all of you, most of the Russian government does, we knew after we went under a dictatorship your country would be scared of us manufacturing nuclear weapons. We were 10 steps ahead, what we didn’t predict was you guys being stupid enough to attack such an informationless place, I have never once ratted on anyone and I do not plan to,” Grigory said as he smirked, even more, knowing he’s already won.
“Congratulations, you know our names, so what?” Death said in a more stern tone as his smirk quickly faded.
Grigory glanced out his window, somehow making his smile wider than the original, “I know that each one of those trucks contains 4 guys, making the number of your crew about 12”
“You think you can win this don’t you, Grigory?”
“Indeed I do, Dwayne.”
Death smirked again, he slammed his hands on Grigory’s desk as he began to tell a joke, “An American is visiting the Soviet Union. He’s taking a train from Leningrad to Kiev and listening to his handheld radio when a Soviet man leans over to talk to him. ‘You know, we make those better and more efficiently here in the Soviet Union,’ he says. ‘Oh?’ Says the American. ‘Yes,’ the Soviet man responds. ‘What is it?’ ”
Grigory laughed, “Such shitty jokes you Brits tell.”
“Alright, I’ve had enough of this,” Death says as he looks over to Thomas, “get the hostages.”
“The what?” Grigory asks. A few minutes later, Thomas, comes back with the 3 hostages and puts them on their knees. Grigory takes a minute to process what’s going on, once he does, he immediately breaks out into a louder and more hysterical laugh than before. “And just when I thought you Brits were shit at jokes, you pull a fast one on me!”
Death aims the gun at one of the hostage’s and says, “If you don’t start talking they die, this girl right here, she’s a mother of 2, does she really deserve to die because you’re too petty to give any information? Do her kids really deserve to go motherless?”
Grigory ponders for a moment, he looks into one of their eyes, he can see the tears rolling down their cheek. “You’re right, they don’t deserve to die, doesn’t mean they won’t though, you really wanna see how much I care about these hostages ya filthy fucking Brit!” Grigory responds as his face goes from a smirk to a more annoyed and irritated face. Grigory pulled a gun from under his desk as he aims and fires at one of the hostages, the bullet pierced their brain. One of the men quickly shot their gun off out of reaction, blowing a shotgun shell through the man’s chest.
“Goddammit, Thomas, what did you just do!” Death yelled out of anger. He quickly ran up to Grigory and got on his knees. “Tell me what you know! Don’t die on me you fucking coward and tell me what you know! Where is the dictator’s, second-hand man!” Death yell’s in desperation, “he was here, we know he was! He did his routine check-up on this area not too long ago! We know he gave you information on his whereabouts, just fucking tell us where he is!”
Grigory looked up at Death and said, “Fuck...th...the Brits,” before giving off a small chuckle and taking his last breath. Death stood there looking down at Grigory’s dead body; he began slowly standing back up, he made his way to the window, looking out onto the land. As he stood there staring, he examined the new war-torn Russia and all the smoke and planes about a mile away from where they were.
“Sir, I thought he was gonna shoot one of us I didn’t kn-”
Thomas was cut off as Death put his hand out to silence him; a minute went by of total silence as he remained to stare out the window. Suddenly, a crackling sound could be heard, it was someone’s radio; a man spoke out from the radio and said, “This is general Nate Dane, calling from the U.N.K special marines base on behalf of the dictator; we want a mission status, the code is ‘C7395G69JL741G U.N.K’ ”
The man picked up his radio and said, “This is marine George Tailor, code ‘694GI0H U.N.K’, mission status, unsuccessful, Grigory Matveev was shot dead after he pulled a gun on a hostage and shot them, we now presume he was trying to make a point about how he didn’t care about their life’s, but at the time we thought he was going to shoot one of us, so one of our men fired their gun in a proper response to the situation, and that’s when Grigory Matveev died. In all fairness sir, we don’t think he was going to give us any information anyway.”
“Well, shit, is Dwayne there?” Nate asked.
“Alright, pass the radio on to him for me will ya?”
“Yes sir,” George said as he looked to Death, “Hey, it’s the general, he wants to talk to you.”
George passed the radio to Death, “Hello, this is marine Dwayne Hodson.”
“This is general Nate Dane, we’ve reported that the mission was unsuccessful, is this true?”
“Yes sir,” Death responded, sounding disappointed. Nate took a minute to respond, “Well that is truly unfortunate, he had a lot of information.”
“Sir there’s something you should know, apparently half the Russian government knows of our presence, they also know our names, the reason this place was so undefended was that they weren’t expecting us to attack a tank production site. We have 5 dead men and one severely wounded, including 4 dead hostages.”
“How is this possible! Aren’t y’all supposed to be the best of the best! You’ve nearly lost half your crew in a mission that wasn’t even complicated!” Nate yelled.
Nate took a minute to calm down, “Alright, we have another mission for you guys, seeing how you’ve all absolutely fucked up this one, I’d be surprised if anyone survived this next one. It requires crossing through the battlefield; this guy, goes by the name of Andrey Voronin, he’s really close friends with the Russian dictator and happens to be a very high-ranked general.”
Death’s attention was immediately drawn to every last word Nate was saying. “We’ve had men report back to us saying they’ve spotted him and multiple other high-ranking officers being escorted through Tver just a few hours before your arrival. They were heading in the same direction as the city Nizhny Novgorod, we suspect the general and his buddies are heading there to plan an assault and possibly push our army back immensely. Also, he’s been working with a major scientist, we don’t know what they’ve discovered but we must find out.” Nate paused for a moment before continuing, “The amount they’ve gone into protecting the information the scientist has discovered is very suspicious. Listen, if you capture this general and make him talk, not only would you get more information on the Russian dictator’s whereabouts but it would allow us to push into Moscow and possibly win this war; you and your team would be rewarded heavily.”
Death stood there for a moment and then looked back at his crew
The crew looked at each other, a silence filled the room, one guy stepped forward and did the U.N.K salute. “Sir, I joined the marines knowing that one day the impossible would come, and I told myself, that it’s not impossible unless it’s impossible, and this mission might seem near to impossible, but that’s all it is, it’s near. I work for the U.N.K and I support our motto, ‘Fight for the living, for even in death we pay honor, my life is worth the millions I will save with it!’”
Slowly the rest of the crew started following along, Death picked up the radio and smirked before saying, “Yeah, we’ll do it.”
“That’s great news!” general Nate responded, “I’ll check on the mission status in about a day, Goodluck marines!”
Death put the radio in his pocket, “Alright men, let’s head out!”
Death walked out of the room and saw John sitting on a nearby bench, “Hey John, where’s Grover?”
“He’s over there...” John pointed to Grover’s body. Death looked at him for a minute before taking in a deep breath. “Well we can’t just leave him here, he deserves a burial.”
“Agreed,” John responded. The rest of the crew noticed Grover’s body, and at that very moment, a certain chill was felt by everyone in the room. The atmosphere felt gloomy and sad as the marines finally had enough time to actually process the deaths of their crewmates, including the death of Grover.
“All of our men deserve a burial, including our enemies; get some sleep men, we have a long day tomorrow,” Death firmly stated as he walked into the other room to get some rest.