The gift

Scientists say that this night we will be able to see one of the самая большая moon of the year; I mean, not of the year but of the next two decades.
This night while I am writing this, but before, just a few minutes after the sunset, I stared to the skies, looking for that big moon everyone was talking about. It was not difficult to find it, to found her; as she was the biggest body in the sky, showing herself with her classic, but gorgeous silver dress. She was round as the perfection, and bright as de the wisdom. I stayed there, in front of her, astonished because of her beauty. I forgot all my pain, all my sadness. I even forgot my loneliness. In this cold night, I feel warm due her light.
All this mixture of feelings reminded me an old story, or more precisely, a woman.

Not so far ago, but in the lands of акмолинск, a young and smart woman lived. Her name was, well, I don’t remember it at all. But what I truly remember was the big moon from that dark night. I had lost my path, and I was following the stars in order to return to the old city of Constantinople. During that night, I started talking to the moon. I did not know if she answer me or what I listened to were my own thoughts. I was so thirsty and hungry, my I was raving with craziness. I was just about to die. I fell down, lying over the dry and cold earth, looking to the stars, what a beautiful sky! I started listening to a thousand of voices. I thought those voices came from the stars, and were telling me that my time had come. I accepted what they said, and I wait until my soul decided to leave this body.
However, this never happened, and soon a group of men came of the blue, and helped me. They carried me and introduced me into a hut, where they called a person. I understood almost nothing, their language was new for me. I thought about Turkish, but then a lot of odd vocabulary appeared in their conversation. Later, I thought something like Azerbaijan of Armenian language, but my knowledge in geography made me think twice. A young woman show herself after a long wait. She said something, and then she took care of me. She asked something, I did not answer. Then she tried with another question, I understood barely, and I said no in Turkish, then she asked Откуда вы? I answered with so difficulties that I came from the south of Mongolia. Then she replied –Your Russian is really bad, but at least we can understand each other- I asked her name. “Aida” was the only word I heard before I felt asleep.

It was a short night for me, I had ache in my whole body, and I felt very tired. However, this girl called Aida, came to the hut and yelled at me “You have slept for almost one day!” That was truly amazing for me, I felt as if had slept only four hours. She did not stop yelling, and her mood was not pleased, she said just before getting out of the hut “Well, wake up! We have to keep moving”. All the people were unsettled the camp. I woke up as far as I could, and looked for Aida. She was mad at me, she was arguing that because of me, they had delayed one day. I defended myself saying that I did not asked for any help. She then replied “Then, next time we will let you die”. I accepted and continue the journey to the north with them.
It was a short caravan, maybe three hundreds of people, all speaking in Russian and another language I have never heard before. Their clothes were a mixture of Mongolian and Russian style, also there were group of old men with some Indian style. I tried to catch up the most common words, but it was almost impossible. Just before midnight, and after the dinner, I tried to talk with some of the people in order to improve my Russian, unfortunately no one wanted to talk with me. I was like the odd guy who nobody wanted. We camped somewhere near a river. The moon was quite big like the last night. After all the loneliness of the day, I felt accompanied again. “Pardon me, I’ve been a fool this day, and maybe ereyesterday I was even more thoughtless. I hast gain so many enemies in one day, or even less, in one night! I do not feel ill because of loneliness, as thee know, but I feel uneasy because I know those gents odium me in some way. I beg thee, cover me and sleep with me this night, as tomorrow I will set on to Turkey” Those were my words to the moon, and next morning, before sunrise, while the moon still over me, I leave the camp and continue my journey to the west.

I decided to omit what happened in the next two months, as nothing happened. But after two months and a half, I arrived to a place called Fort Alexandrovsky with a majority of Russian people, but also Iran nomads, which were in fight with Russians. I waited there, before a fort, for almost three weeks, trying to figure out how to enter to the port and take a ship which takes me to Baku. The fight did not ceased and dozens of soldiers were patrolling the entrance of the fort. They had strict orders to keep all non-Russians away from the port. I remember drinking a salt water and eating what soldiers throw to the dessert. I share my nights with other Iran and Turkmequistan people who were expelled from that area. They wanted to reunite with their families in Azerbaijan and Georgia, but the easiest and shortest way to get there, was through Caspian Sea. Some of the Iran people told me that a conflict started near the border of Turkmequistan, which forced to some people to go to the north or south. I continue my plan to get into the fort and then into the port. It was a suicide, but that was the only way to get back with my friends and family. I have to say, that during those nights, I started to think in Aida, she was elegant and dazzling, she surely did not think about me and, of course, she did not think if I was dead or not. This thoughts came, after I reunite a hundred of people, just to defeat the Russian patrol and then take a ship. That night, we wait until 2 or 3 A.M. when most of the soldiers and people are sleeping. We enter from the main entrance and a massacre started, dozens of families died, but they knew the risks of this attack. Some men and I, manage to enter to the port and take a ship. We fought against the officers, we were having the advantage, until a canyon was fired to the ship. Only one man and I survived. We swam to the cost, and there a group of soldiers arrested us. We were tired because of the fight and the swimming that we surrounded. They cover our heads, and took us to a cabin or little house, where we stayed until the next morning.60810.jpg
After the first rays of the sun enter to the window where we were, the first official entered to the station “You caused a lot of deaths tonight, and even, you sunk a ship” he said “Death, will not be your punishment, but the torture will be” he concluded. They took us to ship and send us to Petrovskoye, where we were forced to work day and night with other slaves. The first night we could sleep, I checked the pockets of my coat, and there I found an envelope, and inside it a Lapis lazuli rock in it. I thought “Who could put it here”. I had threw the envelope and immediately I picked it up. The envelope was made of an interesting material, maybe papyrus or with another plant, it was soft as the silk but beige as the papyrus. I smelled it, and then through a candle I have near me, I found that there were written these words “Подарок жить”, (a gift to live) it was a strange phrase, and after that, a poem was written. I will not write it down in this story as I do not know the complete meaning of it.

The years were far so long, the winter was a nightmare, every night I though we will never wake up again. Now I like cold, but in those days, I really hated it. We were obliged to work even if there was snowing, raining, or below a stunning sun. I tried to make friends, but most of them knew only one language: Arab, Turkish, Kazakh, Russian and even German. I tried to pick up some words, but I never used them. Many people avoided any kind of conversation, so I accepted that the days of silence will just start. I kept my mind working while writing my adventures across the world, or remembering my early ages in my homeland. After five or six years, we were about to finish a railway to Baku; although this railway was mainly constructed by Russians, but we helped in some tasks. The first official, who was a well-educated man with knowledge in four languages, congratulated us. Just for the record, the name of the official was Vitaly Kanturev. This man, gave us a long time vacation of six days. I stayed in the house where all lived and continue my writings. During that summer, the official Kanturev entered to the house and asked me what I was writing, I was really nervous, afraid of him. I had no words. Then he replied “I asked you a question” I barely said “Writing some stories of my past”. The official took a seat and read some of them. After thirty minutes he finally said “You have a virtue with the pen, maybe, if you get free, you might have a good future with your writings”. I was very pleased after hearing that. Then he said “But, as I can see, you are writing in your unofficial mother tongue. I have watched you, and you do not look like the other slaves, where do you came from?”
“I have forgotten my origins, but as far as I know, I came from the south of Mongolia, I had a letter, in which says that my family and friends are waiting from me in Constantinople” I show him the letter and he replied with amusement “This letter was given to you almost eleven years ago! How did you manage to be with all the slaves?”
“It is a long story, you can read in this pages, I had had long time to think about my mistake”
“Oh, I can see, I remember. So, you get help from a young woman call Aida, what a славный and beautiful name, and so interesting. Many people say that Aida means “the helper”. I will set you free tomorrow night, before the first train to Baku depart.”
“Thank you, my master”
“You are not my slave anymore, enjoy your last days here in Petrovskoye”

That night, I was invited to have a drink with the official and the commanders. We enjoy a great time, talking about the world. I could not follow all the conversation, as they started to talk in Russian. But a good dinner and drink, was enough for me.

Next night, before the first train to Baku departed, I asked to the official to send a letter from me to Aida in Pavlodar. The official and I say goodbye. I entered to the train and Vitaly Vitalievich asked me “If you remember your origins, send me a letter, I would be very pleased to read it, have a nice trip and find your family and friends” The train started to move and the noise produce by it, made me impossible to heard his last words. I only wave my hand as a sign of goodbye.

Finally, I seat and try to rest, a long trip awaits me and a new adventure was about to start. I slept a few hours, but in the middle of the night, the train stopped. I was sleepy, but this event was unnatural, from my point of view. I stood up and walked through the aisle and then look through the window. Nothing was outside to be seen nor sound to be heard. I returned to me seat. There, I see a strange dark blue light coming from the window of the door which links the wagons. All the people in my wagon seems to have a very hard sleep, no one woke up, so I decided, with great fear, to see what that dark blue light means. I walked slowly to it. When I was in front of the door, something in my coat started to heat, it was the lapis lazuli, I took off the envelope, and read it again, my vocabulary had increased and the poem ended with this phrase Открой дверь, what a strange poem I thought, but I open the door with no hesitate. The dark blue light turned into a violet light which blinded me. I crossed the door.

1-train-test-1-hotlink.jpgI get out from the door of a train, a different train from the one I entered in Russia. This train was all black, a very dark black which seems to be like a whole in the nowhere. A train with no sound, no people inside, no smoke, no railway and no windows. It made me feel uneasy. That dark train, which seems to have no end, move from nowhere to nowhere. It increased its speed, until it vanished in the middle of nothing. Rethinking about the no sound, I have to admit that I do heard something, a thousand voices whispering, that was all the sound heard from the train. Those were unpleasant whispering, some of joy and some of pain. After I calmed down, I see a large beach and some woods around me, where am I? I asked. I walked to the north, hoping to find something. An after one or two hours, then sun set, it was marvelous. All the tones of red, yellow and orange were coloring the sky; followed then by pinks and purples, and finally violets and dark blues. The stars show above me, and the moon, again, as big as before, shine upon me, lighting my way to somewhere.

“Oh! Bright moon, you, who have seen all the life and all the death. You, who have learned all what is meant to be learn. You, who light with the foresight. You, who have accompanied me along the time. Answered me, where am I?”

I felt on the sand, and fall asleep. A cold wind from the west made me shiver, but then, a warm hands covered me. At the next day, I awake with a letter in my hands, this is what was written on it.Gulf_of_Riga-Beach.JPG

“Dear man, we received a letter from you which was signed in Vladikavkaz a couple of days ago. It was meant to be for my sister, Aida, who says and I believe her, that she does not know you. You write your name and surname, then you explain that you did not tell her ever your name or surname. You also say thank you for her help, which type of help? We asked. Then you say that thanks to her you manage to survive. She have never helped anyone in those conditions. Finally, you also mention a lapis lazuli rock, which she (or I) have never had.
Sincerely, Aidana”


Second Part -> The dark train


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