112 The Information Agency 2
Eriksson also realized the disadvantageous circumstance, he had experienced this kind of organizations before. From the point where their bodies were not searched, his body became stiff. However, looking at Youngho and Jongil giving looks at each other, he was regaining his calmness, being a bright guy, he was quick-witted as well.
After a moment, out of mere formality, a young man welcomed them. He introduced himself as the rebel's young leader. However, the young leader did not seem nervous to speak to them. Realizing that the situation was not turning out to his advantage, Eriksson tried to save his face.
"My organization knows every single detail about your group. The reason I'm here today is to find out the date of your planned terror attack, the location you told us does not have any meaning without the time. If you inform us about the time, we'll send you five million dollars immediately."
"I'd like to let you know in advance, that if I don't contact my agency within the next thirty minutes, this place will be razed to the ground."
"My location is live-streamed through a satellite. If I don't move from a single spot, my agency will consider that something terrible happened to me. Well, let's see, we don't have much time now. Since you brought me here, it should mean that you want to have a deal with us, is that right?"
After hearing Eriksson's words, the young leader of the rebels, got frightened out of his senses and ran out the door and started yelling in Chechen. He must be yelling to other rebels around to retreat. Eriksson had earned only a moment of time but it was more than enough for Youngho and Jongil to prepare.
They could hear steps of several guys running toward the room where the company was. They must be trying to move the group to another location to take them as their hostage. They were going to get a ransom from Eriksson's agency for his life. The two guys rushing in the door soon fell down to the floor from Youngho and Jongil's strokes. As other following guys were trying to aim the group with guns, Youngho and Jongil threw their flip knives to their enemies, there was no time them to go easy on them.
The two guys who were struck by Youngho and Jongil would not be able to move for a while and the other two who were stabbed by the thrown knives would go into the shock if they could not stop the bleeding. Now, the A.K. rifles that the guys brought were in Youngho and Jongil's hands.
The two fired the rifles at random. The place was in the middle of a city and gun fires would naturally attract police or army soldiers. They would suspect a terrorist attack and surround the house in no time. Youngho was aiming for that.
The people who blindly fired the guns, after they were out of ammunition, they opened the door and left the room. The rebels were not spotted as if they all fled their base. Although their comrades were shot and injured, no one came around to help them.
Jongil carried one of the passed out rebels on his shoulders like a load. Youngho gestured Eriksson to climb on his back, he looked at him in absurdity but Youngho did not care. Carrying Eriksson on his back, he ran outside at a proper speed. They needed to get out of the place as soon as possible since their appearance in the base of the rebels would be suspicious to the local police or army.
The rebel that Jongil brought seemed to hold a high position in his group. Youngho let him feel agonizing pain by pushing some acupuncture points on his body. As he interrogated him and asked him to let out the date of the terror attack, he told them that the date was October 10th. Eriksson, who had been watching the rebel speak, stopped Youngho and asked to let him go. It seemed that Eriksson was assured that the rebel was speaking the truth.
'Does he also have a mystical relic just like me? Or did he learn how to read people's minds?'
Thinking that, Youngho decided to ask Eriksson about it later.
"Mr. Lee, what types of physical training have you gone through? How could you run like an athlete while carrying me on your back?"
"I've gone through daily training of exhaustion for more than a year. You can only finish the training when you can carry fifty kilograms of weight while running a distance of 40 kilometers in three hours and swimming for ten more kilometers."
This was what Kim Ilkwon had said about his training in North Korea. Youngho edited some parts and told Eriksson, so he would not suspect his strength. Eriksson had keen insights than most people, so in order to deceive him, Youngho needed to make an intricate lie. After hearing Youngho, his jaw dropped. Truly the training was not any normal person could go through.
"Even though I already trusted your strengths but it's just amazing to see with my own eyes. Why don't you help us when you're retired?"
Youngho and Jongil were just offered a job after their retirement.
"Well, I'm not sure if Michael will let me go easily."
While mentioning Michael, Youngho negotiated his value.
"Looking at the rebels today, they seemed they could launch the terror attack even on a different date. Thank you for your help, because of your help, I fulfilled my purpose for coming here."
Eriksson was confident. He seemed to have captured something from the rebels' actions.
"Well, it looks like a disorganized group like that will be going to stir the world with their reckless behaviors."
Youngho also felt that the rebels were so different from the last generation.
"They are just a mere terrorist group. Chechnya's independence is not their priority; they are just power hungry terrorists."
Eriksson was right. The terrorists had already lost their purpose, all there was left in them was a sense of heroism to be a world-famous terror group. As those rebels get extreme, Russia would gain more justification to get rid of them, and Chechnya would go further away from independence.
"We should get out of Chechnya now. They might come for us for payback."
Eriksson looked confident that he fulfilled the goal of the mission although Youngho and Jongil had no idea. The only information they attained was some unreliable date of the terror attack but Eriksson seemed to have guessed more than that from the encounter with the rebels.
On the train back to Baku, the three guys were again immersed at playing cards. At last, Eriksson had won all of Youngho and Jongil's money in their pockets. Although they had begun the game under the condition of five hundred dollar limit, Jongil was still pretty upset for his loss. They had lost the keen battle of wits.
Youngho, again, wondered about the information agency since it was an organization where elites like Eriksson were gathered. Winning a card game could look like it was out of pure luck but it actually was a mind game. That was why 'poker face' was needed. Jongil insisted to play again but Youngho knew that the result would be the same no matter how many times they challenged Eriksson.
"Jongil, why don't you just ask to have a race? We're way behind in the card games."
"I'm confident that I can win now."
"Your face shows whenever you get great cards."
Eriksson laughed hard at Youngho's remark.
"That's true. Mr. Park, you should never play cards. You'll lose to anybody. It's not easy to maintain a poker face."
"Phew. I'm saying I'm a good actor."
Jongil's nagging did not work since Youngho and Eriksson was already in their beds, ready to sleep.
Youngho was at the Baku airport to say goodbye to Eriksson.
"Mr. Lee, you'll receive what you deserve for helping me this time. Personally, I'm so grateful that I got to escape from a terrible situation because of you two."
"There's no need to thank me. I also wanted to investigate the rebels for the CIA's purpose. I didn't want any payment for this, so you don't have to mind me."
"No. This is what I proposed first, so you should absolutely get paid. I also want to tell you that I achieved what I needed from this mission."
Youngho wanted to re-confirm with Eriksson, if it was okay for the CIA to act upon the information individually.
"Mr. Eriksson, the information was not completely reliable but would it be okay if I share this within the CIA or to other relatable countries?"
"I can't say that we won't absolutely be affected by that but I guess I should leave the decision to the organizations who receive this information. Nothing will change except for the fact that there will be more organizations watching for the Black Widows."
"The CIA will try to stop the terrorists but isn't your business more successful when there is a terror attack?"
"This is what only the insiders of our agency know but I'll tell you this. We have both clients who would be making profits out of a terror attack and who would end up in the complete opposite side. We deal with both sides at the same time. Apart from the success of the terror attack, isn't it true that there will be an attack?"
Eriksson sounded like that his agency valued the truth of a piece of information but his remark was too ambiguous for Youngho.
After sending Eriksson, Youngho pondered about what he could do with the information. He did not worry about the CIA informing the Russian authorities but he was worried about the oil price fluctuation. Knowing about the potential terror attack would have a psychological effect on oil-producing countries and it would eventually cause a temporary rise in the oil price.
He wanted to notify the Korean government but the problem was not only they would not act upon the information but also he could not say where the information was from. The government would not change their policy because of a mere farm owner. Last time, they did not even believe the information from a major Korean ambassador who lived in an oil-producing country.
The only way to deliver the message to the Korean government was telling the Korean secret agent that Youngho was acquainted with. But how would he explain the source of the information? Also, if the terror attack was prevented in advance, the oil price might not change at all. Then, there was no way Youngho could explain the situation. Looking at Youngho deep in thoughts, Jongil realized what he was worried about.
"Man, are you thinking about a way to inform the Korean government?"
"Whoa, dude. You now point out random things."
"Don't do it. They'd never listen. Terrorists had been targeting oil pipelines for a long time. I don't think they'll do anything about it."
"It'd kill me if I don't let them know."
"Why don't you just report it to the European chapter already? They're the one to stop the terrorists, you know."
Jongil was speaking the truth. Youngho reached his phone without wasting a moment.
Youngho explained the situation to Michael and informed him about the appearance of the young rebel leader. It was a loss that he could not take a picture of the leader but there was no such time. Because of the ring's power, he could easily recall once he saw something. With his description of the rebel leader, the CIA could draw a montage of the leader. Now the rebel leader would be on the blacklist and he could soon be arrested with the montage.
Youngho also slipped the information to Yaniv, so that he could deliver the message to Putin. Although it might be difficult to cover the whole surround of Chechen pipeline, since it was hundreds of kilometers long, the Russian government would also try their best to protect the pipeline. Pipelines frequently became a terrorist target but since they knew the approximate date, his information would be very helpful to reduce the damage.
Youngho also informed the Korean agent of the Korean embassy in Azerbaijan, that there would be a terror attack on the Chechen pipeline around October 10th. Now there was no other job left for Youngho to do. The Korean government would decide whether to believe the information from the Korean secret agent. Youngho decided to sit back and watch since the Korean economy would not be shaken because of a little oil price fluctuation.
The Korean agent seemed to be surprised by Youngho's intelligence capabilities that could collect the information about a future terrorist attack. He only believed that Youngho was just that close with the Azerbaijani government.
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