We were already on Istiklal street.
When all of a sudden my son says to me in a frightened way:
“Some strange guy has been walking behind us all the way for two hours and constantly takes pictures of us, don’t look at him and pretend that you haven’t noticed anything.”
At first it seemed to me absolute nonsense.
But really at a distance of about 7-9 feet in front of us was a young guy in a blue T-shirt and denim breeches, and he looked rather inadequate and behaved strangely.
He had a phone in his hands and constantly, entering the tram tracks of the nostalgic tram, he stopped and took pictures of us.
We stopped, and he stopped too.
He stood in front of us and followed with his eyes our every move.
We went further, he did the same.
We walked a few yards and stopped, and he also stopped and stood a couple of yards away from us, and without taking his eyes off us, unceremoniously and intrusively continued to take pictures of us. It all looked really strange, because the reason for his so active interest in us was incomprehensible.
In the meantime, my son looked even more frightened, he persistently said that the guy’s behavior is incomprehensible and inspires fear, that human trafficking is widespread in many countries and gradually fears began to seize me too.
It was a strange sensation – on the one hand, I felt inner peace, and on the other hand, some strange anxiety, as if outside, continued to grow.
We reached one of the consulates, there are several of them on Istiklal and pressed the bell button. We were answered and advised to contact a policeman, of whom there are always a lot of them on the street.
After this maneuver, the guy left us, and we safely reached the house, where we decided to get distract ourselves and have a snack.
But just as we were about to sit down at the table, a call rang from Emre’s number (a tall, pumped up, pleasant and very responsible and benevolent young man who, together with his brother Erol, rented to us a previous apartment nearby).
Emre’s voice was trembling with emotion and horror. He said that Erol was apparently kidnapped on Istiklal Street an hour ago, he does not know the details.
My son and I looked at each other:
“Could meeting that guy really portend danger?” – we thought.
While we were trying to understand whether this was so, Emre called again and said that he had seen the video recordings on Istiklal Street and there he saw that a guy in denim breeches and a blue T-shirt was walking behind us and talking on the phone, in this conversation he described my son and expressed doubts whether it would be suitable for the customer.
I must add that my son, although tall, is rather thin.
Emre described the guy in detail and the description matched exactly, right down to the red stitching on the guy’s sneakers.
Emre said he saw on the cameras that the guy had already reached out his hand with a syringe to son’s arm, but then he saw Erol (Emre’s brother), apparently a regular at the gym, who was in excellent, much more suitable physical form for the customer, and injecting with a syringe, the guy pushed him into the open door of the driven up, apparently by acall of the guy, car.
We were shocked. Highly.
Brother, brother, hello! Open up please, I have to tell you what happened to me now! “- we heard the trembling voice of Khalil outside the door, very friendly and attentive, but loving to smoke weed, the owner of the apartment.
The son opened the door and saw Khalil, who really didn’t look well at all. His face was pale, his T-shirt was torn at the back, and he himself seemed to be shaking with horror.
“Brother, I went to that big Carefour store, you know, down that street. There, a huge seven-foot security guard, he came up to me, grabbed a T-shirt and said that I had to go to the interior of the store. At the same time, he winked at the muscular man who was cutting the meat with a huge knife and followed us.
“It’s your time to serve as food. Do you think we have meat on the shelves is made from ram? “- asked the guard.
At first I was numb with horror, and then I dashed with all my might, and I managed to escape. I ran to the exit, and the security guard and musclehead slipped on the wet floor with and I managed to get away from them. Brother, be careful, please!”
Now our thoughts were occupied only by these incidents and to distract ourselves, we called our American friend James, who was traveling with his dog and talked with him for an hour and a half. This somewhat distracted us from heavy thoughts about what had happened.
And we were about to rest after a tiring day, but then again we heard the call.
This time called the owner of the apartment Khalil. His voice was interrupting by fear:
“Hi Brother! Be very careful, please, be quiet and don’t go to the window. The area has been taken over by a gang that is engaged in human trafficking,” he said.