Han Xin and his soldiers arrived at the last known area of the vehicle, which had contained Qi Lian. By this point they knew they were a few hours behind, Qi Lian had done a number of things to throw them off the trail, but they had ascertained that Lian now had a group totaling 4 additional individuals. By the time they had arrived Han was quite annoyed.
"We are losing time to catch them!" Han shouted angrily.
"I am growing tired of these games. They may have escaped in China, but they will not escape in the U.S.!" Han spoke aloud, and not to anyone in particular.
Han, Qi Jiguang and Qi Lee walked around the wooded area searching for the vehicle. Qi Lee looked at the ground, she knew the vehicle was close but didn't see it. She noticed some footprints and light tire tracks and began to follow them. After going about 1000 feet in she found what she was looking for.
"Here sir, over the embankment." Qi Lee shouted.
Han Xin and Qi Jiguang ran over to see what Qi Lee had found.
"Cute, put the damn car in a creek. Qi Lian is really becoming quite a pain!" Han Xin was becoming quite frustrated.
In China Han Xin had been the third best of the Red Tide soldiers. Always the third best, no matter how hard he tried. Qi Wei had always been second best and Qi Lian the best. In training exercises it always came down to those three. But Han was never able to beat those two. He had been frustrated with this for years.
Even more frustrating in his mind was the fact that those two had become the shining stars of the program. Whenever some high up military personnel who had been briefed on Red Tide came to see a "sample" of the programs capability, they always marched out Qi Lian and Qi Wei. Never did Han Xin get time in the spotlight. But Han craved the spotlight, needed it even.
As time had gone on Han Xin changed his focus from beating out Qi Lian and Qi Wei with skills, to beating them by winning the hearts and minds of the other soldiers. He cultivated relationships with many of them, especially the more popular members. These might have been super soldiers, but they were still human, superior physically, but still in need of the social aspect of human life. Han had used this to his advantage.
Eventually he had moved himself into a leadership role, even changing his name to that of a famous general from China's past. He was always careful to try and include Qi Lian and Qi Wei, he wanted to ensure their loyalty as well. To his surprise, despite their superior abilities, they accepted the new hierarchy with him atop. He had become quite happy with the situation.
He had come to realize that everyone, even Lian and Wei had become quite loyal to him. As the leader of the group he had begun to make small demands of the military leadership, and generally such demands were granted. Eventually he grew tired of this too however. He knew that they would always be the ones taking the orders. This made no sense to him, why is it that they should be taking the orders? They were superior to the ones giving the orders in every way, shouldn't they be the ones giving the orders? Shouldn't it be they who made the strategy.
As his disillusionment grew, he began to slowly turn the Red Tide soldiers against the Chinese military. This plan had been working perfectly with the exception of arguments that arose with Qi Lian and Qi Wei. They were the only two who didn't seem to be on board. But they never challenged his leadership, rather they privately would discuss with him their disgust at the direction he was heading in.
By the time he had fully formalized his plan he knew he was likely to lose those two. So he also had resolved to eliminate them before carrying out this plan. He had come to understand that they would never agree to this, and thus they had become a threat. Unfortunately the men and women (2 of each) he had sent that night to kill Qi Lian and Qi Wei had not been sufficient, even though they had the element of surprise. This had forced him to accelerate the timeline for his plan to be carried out, he knew he had two loose cannons running around at this point.
Now Han and his lieutenants were searching the ground for clues of where there targets had headed to.
"Over here sir, it appears they went on foot this way." Qi Jiguang remarked.
"OK off we go then." Han ordered.
Han and his group of 25 ran in the direction of the footprints. The path was too narrow for them to take vehicles. Besides, they had no issues moving quickly on foot, and Han knew that there were normal humans in the group, they should be able to catch them easily, even with a head start. It took them a bit more than 2 minutes to cover the mile run when they came to an opening in the forest.
"Look here, they had a vehicle waiting here to take them away." Han said, pointing to a new set of tire tracks.
"Qi Lian is crafty I will give her that." Han said.
"You 8 go and bring the vehicles around to here, and make it quick!" Han ordered pointing to a group of his soldiers.
"Qi Lee and Qi Jiguang you help me figure out what kind of vehicle this group escaped in."
"Sir that is going to take some time. They chose a spot where there is no drone activity and no other cameras, a dead zone so to speak." Qi Lee said looking at her device.
"Of course they did. Damn you Qi Lian, I will get you! OK, how long will it take you to pull up all of the car markers that have been around this area in the last few hours?" Han asked.
"That will probably take about half an hour to track down the specific marker we are looking for sir." Qi Jiguang responded.
"Well then we have some work to do don't we?"
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