Journey to Istanbul

  Watch the trailer, and explore the story of Afet below.

 

 Afet walked swiftly through the sun soaked streets, the air was sticky with the rising heat of the day and tangled with calls of the sellers and hagglers in the nearby baazar. Heedless to the world about her, even the vibrant silks clashing violet, viridian, and umber torrents over the traders stall to her right Afet continued on her way, her mind roiling and her heart ill at ease.

 

The paths she walked were hallowed ground she knew, Romans, Byzantians and Ottomans had clashed and bled in the city. 'I'm walking on blood and bones' she thought, the idea throwing her out of her body for a moment. Istanbul, or Constantinople as the Greeks still called it, was a rich jewel in the crown of any empire. At the convergence of trade routes of land and sea, wealth and people had poured into the city for generations. The riches gained in conquest were clear to see in the old city but the battles had not been without their scars. 

 

Afet was feeling the pains from her own wounds today, although in her fight, the battle ground was her heart and the fatigue was draining her already. Exhausted from a night distinguished by lack of sleep and thoughts that chased their own tails all night long Afet stumbled from the curb and fell into the road.

 

A sharp pain in her left knee jarred her into sudden awareness. The troubles of the night receded from her thoughts as the bright welling of blood and the copper-sweet taste on her tongue forced her attention to her injuries. Help was nowhere at hand, and grumbling, she pulled herself up from the dusty, crowded thouroughfair and sought sanctuary.

 

It would have to be nearby Afet soon realised, her knee was injured more badly than she had first thought, it would not bear her weight and the blood streamed unstintingly, staining her the leg of white salavar garish crimson and collecting tackily in her gold sandals.

 

 

Hobbling among the crowds Afet spied an open door way in the cool stone walls on the shady side of the street. Hurrying towards it as best she could, she passed through and the noise from the bazaar was left behind. All was quiet here.

Stone walls worn to smoothness by the passing of years, the touch of thousands of hands and bleached white by the sun were cool now, in the shade. The walls were set with traditional painted Turkish tiles, their designs a multitude of blues - sacred intricate patterns and never ending hues. 

  

Afet became aware of her own heart beat in the silence.  The court yard she found herself in was shaded by tall trees, with a marble fountain along one wall. She found herself craving the water like a need for salvation. Everything else seemed to fall away as she moved towards the shimmering blue and gold edifice.

 

Looking down, she felt like she was falling into a well of secrets. Images from her life rose up to her, seeming to float on the surface before sinking beneath again. Watching, reflecting, Afet felt the tangles in her heart begin to unsnarl. Images connected, happenings made sense, forgiveness welled up in her like a wave, overflowing through her body like a benediction.

 

 Gradually Afet's awareness expanded and she greeted the woman sitting next to her, the woman's face was a celebration of a life spent laughing, her eyes shone and she took Afet's hand in her own calloused fingers. Cupping water in her other hand, she washed a swathe of the cooling liquid over Afet's injured knee and the immediate relief brought tears to the younger woman's eyes.


 

Reaching into the pocket of her sky blue skirt, the smiling woman withdrew something curled in her palm - a delicate treasure. Reaching for Afet's hand, she passed over the gift and in receiving it, Afet knew her heart began to heal. She experienced the growth of her soul's wings and the sparks of hope spoke of love again. Opening her hand, she gazed on the two bright turquoises.

 

Shaped into tear drops, from the legendary turquoise city of Isfahan, and as blue as the ocean, they seemed to her in that moment two bright pieces of eternity. She closed her eyes and wished that she could love again, could grow old, and live to be a woman with a face full of laughter and a sharer of secrets.

 

Hooking the turquoises in her ears, she felt her potential unfold before her. She looked at her reflection in the cool pool beneath and then up to the bright sky above. Knowing her heart to be free Afet laughed with delight, she could go anywhere, do anything, and she treasured that potential joyously. 

 

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