Pat cursed as machine gun fire rattled his vehicle.

It was the third time that night and they had only been in Syria a matter of hours.  Tartus had been an obvious no-go to make port in so they had to come in at a much smaller port to the north.  The logistics themselves were an absolute nightmare.  With such a time crunch there was no way he was going to be able to get Samruk International’s gun trucks into country.  That alone put them at a major disadvantage.  They had to use their operational funds to buy four two and half ton trucks in Egypt and travel with them by boat to Cyprus and then on to Syria.  He didn’t even like to think about how much he had to bribe the ship’s captain to run a Han Solo style pirate run on the Syrian coast to drop them off.

They were gunning it through their third ambush.  In addition, they had bribed their way through one checkpoint on the road and shot through another.  This was the fight to get to the fight.  The only good news was that he had a platoon of trained and battle-hardened Kazakh mercenaries.  From the beds of the transport trucks, they returned fire on enemy positions up in the cliffs to their side.  Led by Western advisers like Kurt Jager of Germany’s GSG-9 and Leszek of Polish GROM, Samruk International definitely had their shit wired tighter than the regime thugs or the rabble that passed for a rebellion that they had encountered thus far.

The problem was that they could still be nickled and dimed until they were a bloody mess by the time they rolled into Homs in the morning.  Out here they had no support, no back up, no resupply.

Another thing they didn’t have was an update from Deckard.  The last text he had gotten from the cell phone Aghassi had left for him was that the mission had the green light and they would be jumping in tonight on a drop zone near Homs.

By daylight, they would need to have something from him.  Driving into Homs blind was a death sentence with the city divided down the middle by rebels and regime forces who were slugging it out block by block.  The pictures that had emerged from the war torn city looked like Stalingrad in World War Two.

The only thing they had going in their favor, and it wasn’t much, was a local fixer named Ali.  Pat had called a friend in the intelligence community to get a recommendation for someone local.  They picked Ali up on the side of the road in Tartus after wiring him half of his fee.  He lived just outside Homs and could help guide them into their targets.  So far, he hadn’t been much good at helping them avoid ambushes and checkpoints.

All they needed was to cross the rest of the war-torn landscape to Homs, get comms with Deckard, and then shoot their way in to secure two chemicals weapons, destroy them, and then shoot their way out.