And we were already going to rest after a tiring day, but then again we heard the call.
This time the landlord Khalil called.
His voice was interrupted by fear.
“Hi Brother! Be very careful, please, be quiet and do not go to the window. The area is occupied by a gang that is engaged in human trafficking. I am staying at a friend’s place, there are many people, safer, I will be back in the morning” – he said.
We were not very inclined to fully trust this message, but the street was somehow very quiet, and when I looked out the window, I saw that there was no one in our, usually noisy in the evening, alley.
Most often, an active life there only began after eleven and these parties, in which Khalil often participated, traditionally dragged on until 6 or 7 in the morning.
And as soon as I went to the bathroom, someone began to knock on the door very persistently. I froze and quietly returned. The knocking continued for several minutes, then it became quiet and the light on the stairwell went out. And I decided to repeat my maneuver. But now, as soon as I reached the bathroom, someone outside began to shake the door with serious force and aggressively shout something in Arabic …
And even below us, in the basement, where the owner of the apartment lived, it could hear someone walking and even moving furniture. But Khalil said that he left. WHO is there then?
“Brother, just be quiet, very quiet and everything will be fine. Friends said they were unlikely to break down the door. But, if they suspect that there is someone in the apartment, they push a flat gas bomb with poisonous gas under the door, which quickly spreads through the apartment and people, so as not to suffocate, run out into the street themselves, and there they are already waiting for them …
But these bombs are quite expensive, so they only use them if they know for sure that someone is in the apartment. So just behave as quietly as possible and everything will be fine. ” – told us in one of the calls for additional information the owner of the apartment.
“So this note on the alarm clock was really a warning? It’s been exactly a week since it all started … What to do now?” – we began to ask each other.
After a while, several more calls followed … from the numbers of Khalil and Emre … with even more not even scary, but simply creepy and the creepiest messages … which I don’t even want to tell.
Their meaning boiled down to the fact that something is happening in Istanbul, without exaggeration, HORRIBLE.
And “fear has big eyes”, gradually we began to feel that we were as if entangled of some kind of sticky dark horror.
We were afraid to talk, we were beware of looking out the window, to move, because someone outside is walking below, and he hears everything, we were afraid to even watch any information on the phone, since the light from the smartphone screen, and we lived on the first floor, could be seen on the street and thus betray our presence in the apartment …
My heart was beating fast …
I turned off the sound on the phone so that it would not suddenly ring … and began to pray that we would safely survive this night …
And when the seemingly endless night ended, I pushed the curtain back a little and saw on the street a small man in a black shirt and a woman talking to him.
I woke up my son, who, unlike me, still managed to fall asleep in the morning, and said to him, “Look, everything is fine, there are people on the street, so everything is over, they are gone.”
The son woke up and reached for the phone to call the owner, just in case.
“Brother, I implore, do not go out, the man on the street is the leader of the group, and the woman is his wife. Friends called me and said that there are 40 shooters on the upper floors. Be careful, please. They will leave soon, only they will get down and take the corpses with them … Hear, they are already leaving … “
And we really heard people coming down the steps from the upper floors and dragging something (or someone?) obviously heavy and this something was pounding noisily on the steps …
They went up and down several times … and each time they got down something pounding on the steps …
Closer to lunchtime, Khalil called us and said that everything was calm, they left, he looked at the cameras, we can go out freely.
But, to be honest, we had already lost the desire to go somewhere and the whole day we were moving away from the strongest shock, having reached only the nearest store.
Next to which we noticed a store called “Erol.”
And it upset and scared us even more.
“What a great and cheerful guy that Erol was. Could this really happen to him? Maybe we should go to Emre and talk to him and find out if this is true?” – I suggested.
“Yes, I think this is the right idea. But not today. Better, let’s come to our senses” – answered the son.
When we returned home, we saw that our little alley was already full of quite expensive cars, and they continued to drive up one after another.
“These are people from our area who come to discuss the dangerous situation and take protective measures” — Khalil explained.
In the evening we thought that we need to get away from all this nightmare, get a good sleep and then calmly analyze the situation.
As soon as we began to carry out this plan, the call rang:
“Brother, they are back. Be careful. They quarreled with another group and at night there may be a showdown between them. Be quiet, pretend that you are not and everything will be fine, they are fighting among themselves, they are not interested in you” ― again stunned us the owner of the apartment.
And for some reason, all night long on the street, every few minutes, cars drove up one after another and their doors were loudly slammed, some aggressive loud male voices were heard (we do not know Turkish) and several times there were screams similar to requests for help. And again we sat in some kind of bubble or web of sticky horror until the morning and again wondered what was happening on the street … and again were afraid to look out the window …
And the next day we saw that Khalil, whose door was next to ours, was brought a large
refrigerator and he examined it inside while standing on the landing.
“Great! Do you want to buy more food now?” ― we asked.
“Brother, I think that if to take the shelves out of it, it can hide in case of danger” ― he replied.
After these two, we were given a whole series of nights with similar, but each time different “performances” and “scary” calls.
And after 7-10 days, the owner of the apartment knocked on our door and said:
“Sorry, brother, I myself don’t know what came over me and I unintentionally scared you. Forgive me please!”
Gradually we began to come to our senses and reasonably comprehend and analyze what was happening.
The man in the black shirt turned out to be surprisingly similar to the guy sitting on the check-in in the hotel opposite, and the woman who was talking to him was the owner of the neighboring guest house “Tulip”.
And when we passed a store called “Erol” as if someone started to stretch our mouths in a smile.
And now these episodes my son and I can no longer remember without laughing.
Now that some time has passed since those events, and we have a little comprehended what happened with us in Istanbul and tried to understand what really happened there.
This is what we want to discuss with you in the next short note-comments to this episode.
To be continued…