Kiev, Ukraine; Sometime before the passing of former Prime Minister Nikantor

"Target spotted."

"Affirmative. Insertion in ten seconds."

The occupants of a Rolls-Royce Ghost tightened up their jackets and readied their pistols. The weapons were of Russian design, all of them Makarov PMM service pistols. They exited the car in unision and followed a man down the street. Their footsteps were almost silent, but at least quieter than the ones of the man they were following.

The man stopped at a bus stop and his four shadows reached out and dragged him into the darkness. A silenced pistol shot to the skull instantly killed him and the only things that were taken was a small USB drive and several other papers in his pocket.

They entered their car again, speeding off to another destination.


Three days earlier...

"Yellow Group, begin making your way into the Secondary Briefing Room," the speaker sounded.

Footsteps shuffled as four soldiers in orange uniforms stepped into the dark information center. One by one, the constituents of Yellow Group filed into it. Caid Bashar Mathias "Levy" Morrick was first, in a confident stride. The tall sniper, Victor "Longbow" Kryzkarek sighed as he knew he was going to see action again. Richard "King" Sherman crouched through the already-large double doorway as Juka "Breacher" Ogadawa slammed both doors shut, securely locking them and soundproofing the briefing room. A large projector was the only light, firing a massive view of the Ukraine region on a large screen. A tall officer, who many of the servicemen recognised as High Commander Alexander Baker, greeted them as he stood by the screen, waiting for the Phantoms to settle down.

    “Men, the situation is of dire circumstances,” Baker disclosed. “I will not have much time to brief you. 

    “Approximately thirty minutes ago, we have learned of a Phantom threat emerging in Ukraine. Our counter-intelligence forces uncovered an entire pro-Phantom political power that has gripped the country for many years. Only now have the sleepers in the Ukrainian government started to awaken. From first-glance intelligence results, we have concluded that the Phantoms have an extensive clandestine operations network dedicated to taking control of nations and installing them as puppet powers for their own gain. Urgent response is necessary, otherwise we may have another front to fight in Eastern Europe. Work your way up from the lower rungs of this Phantom machine to eventually find the head of this leviathan. Do not be afraid to cut it off.

    "You are dismissed," Commander Baker finished. "Any additional questions?"

    "Sir, will we receive any additional assistance?" called Longbow at the back.

    "On the subject of reinforcements," the High Commander answered, "a team of four Vympel operators from the Spetsnaz will provide any needed firepower. They are stationed at a close location to keep a watch for you, and will be deployed automatically when we observe that things are going badly. Another four-man team of handpicked Ghost clandestine operations personnel will also passively collect intel. They will contact you in an indirect manner, so be attentive. Any other questions?"

    "That will be all, sir." Longbow replied.

    Two days later...

    "Secure the container, don't let any fucking drones get near us!" yelled a masked insurgent. He wore blue uniform and commanded his team to reinforce their building. Anyone that wants to take us out will have to fight hard, he thought.

    His subordinates planted defensive shields and set up reinforcements on weaker walls. Barbed wire was laid out and doorways were barricaded. Not even a fly could get in without being shot by the five terrorists guarding the information container.

    A drone rolled from under one of the door barricades.

    "The location of the container is compromised, they'll come in at any second!" the leader's earpiece yelled.

    The insurgents ran around shooting at the drone. It hopped and hid in corners before one of the terrorists shot one of his comrades in the foot.

    "Watch where you're shooting, fucker!" he screamed as he clutched his foot. Another insurgent helped him up and patched up the bleeding as the terrorist who was shot in the foot limped and sat down in the corner, clutching his AR-15.

    A rumble shook from above them as the all the terrorists looked up. A blaze cut through the roof and sprayed sparks down the floor. The thermite reaction ate through the steel reinforcements of a panel they had fortified.

    "FUCKING DUCK!" cried an insurgent with the M249. The roof exploded, showering the room with debris. Muffled shouts can be heard as gunshots came through the new opening. Luckily, they had shields to hide behind and many rounds bounced off the armored plating.

    There was a shout from the other side of the wall.

    "Planting cluster charge!" a muffled call sounded.

    Poof! Poof! Poof! Poof! Poof!

    Five miniature grenades were fired from a small opening drilled by the device. The sound quickly resulted in:

    Boom! Boom! Boom! Boom! Boom!

    The room was a bloody mess, but the reinforced container that held the files remained intact but a bit charred. A sledgehammer was used by the orange-uniformed attackers to barge their way in as they secured the information.