The world seemed determined to make Erkan switch to a daytime schedule. That was clearly why he was getting hospitalized so much. Erkan could think of no other reason, because he hadn’t offended anyone.
Apparently Justin had, though. Erkan had some time to piece things together. Justin hadn’t been willing to pay off the mafia, thus his windows were broken. That was easy to understand. Apparently, his continued refusal was enough to have them shoot up a random customer of his. That was the part that didn’t make sense. Some smashed windows weren’t a big deal in the grand scheme of things- expensive and frustrating, yes, but not the sort of thing that got heavy police involvement. Erkan had assumed the mafia wanted to stay away from that sort of thing, especially not when it didn’t matter. There was no way they really needed a bit of cash from a deli.
There was clearly more going on than was visible on the surface… with many things. Erkan had a lot of time to look into it, since only his parents came to visit. That was probably a good thing, because he wasn’t in a great mood and getting upset with a police officer or his girlfriend for something that wasn’t their fault wouldn’t be great.
Erkan stepped back to think about the big picture. First, there was supernatural stuff. It seemed crazy to think about it, but he had some evidence for that… such as not being dead. He had definitely felt the magic that Savina used to pull his blood back into his body, and magic meant supernatural. There had also been some conversation indicating that the man who kidnapped Erkan had been shot a handful of times and leaped off a balcony. Savina’s uncle worked with some weird division of the police department. By themselves, each little piece didn’t mean anything… except for the magic. Magic which had surprised Detective Simmons- though he wasn’t very vocal about it- and which had not surprised Savina’s uncle.
If he accepted that magic of some sort and thus some amount of supernatural stuff was real, he could fit a few more pieces together. It was speculation… but he didn’t have anything better to do with his time. First, there were the murders. There were always a few of those, but two in particular came to mind. Some guy got his throat ripped out by a wild animal or something- the investigation hadn’t released any more information. However, Erkan managed to find some pictures. Then there was the murder he had witnessed. There had been a scream, and a few seconds later he had seen a body with a crushed head. Erkan wasn’t a medical doctor, but he knew enough about anatomy to say that sort of thing didn’t happen easily. At least, not without heavy machinery around. Furthermore, whatever had done it had left quickly- enough to get out of sight within that same few seconds.
It was only when he finally found pictures of the third death that he remembered. The pictures themselves told him nothing- it was just body parts strewn all over the place. It was the fact that the third person was the one who had shot him. That was when he put the pieces together, though he wasn’t quite sure if they fit. Maybe they weren’t from the same puzzle, but used the same stamp. Regardless, he came up with a theory.
The first two were the two thugs that had smashed up the deli. Justin had said he would like to strangle them if he could get away with it- and maybe he thought he could get away with tearing them to pieces. That idea was of course predicated on the supposition that Justin could tear people to pieces. Erkan had no direct evidence for that… but he didn’t have none at all. If that was the case, perhaps the one who had shot Erkan had been killed precisely because of that, instead of in an unrelated incident. Justin knew about it happening, certainly.
Then, of course… was Justin actually supernatural in some way? A werewolf or vampire or something? Erkan pieced together the evidence, starting with circumstantial. First, Justin always wore butcher’s gauntlets. Were those to protect his hands from being cut… or to hide claws? Probably the first. But there was more. Justin smiled, but he never showed his teeth. Was he hiding fangs… or was he just not the sort of person who smiled that way? Justin also was open at night… and even got his best business then. That certainly meant something. Of course, all of that was starting with the conclusion and working backwards to what he wanted to think.
There had to be some other kind of connection. There was one that Erkan hadn’t even thought about until he pored over his memories carefully. There was Rosa, Justin’s girlfriend. She’d used magic on him. It felt different and he hadn’t recognized it at the time… but she’d had him think about Savina to the point he couldn’t help but ask her out. That was about half his reason for being in a daze at that time. He couldn’t prove it to anyone else, but he knew in his heart it was true. Which honestly meant nothing because the week before he would have sworn that magic didn’t exist.
The final connection was Savina herself. Sure, she could have gone to George’s for the same reason Erkan did- it was open at night and a good deli- but it could have also been the supernatural connection.
So with all that decided, what did it mean? Did it mean Justin was responsible for Erkan being captured and tortured? Well, yes… but only indirectly. He had certainly not meant for it to happen, and if he’d killed someone for shooting Erkan… well, Erkan wasn’t sure if that was the correct solution, but it was for his sake. Probably. Erkan would have preferred to stay out of the whole mess entirely, but he could understand Justin’s motivations in the half-imaginary scenario he’d put together.
All that meant… what? Erkan wasn’t sure. He could also be wrong. However, he knew someone he could ask. Maybe he should have already… but Savina hadn’t even texted all week. It was just sort of awkward. Still, he made up his mind.
I have tons of questions
about what happened last week
You there? Too early?
Sorry, who is this?
What? It’s Erkan.
Or at least… a guy you went on a few dates with.
It’s about the… magic thing.
You… remember that?
Yeah? I mean I was conscious the whole time
The whole point of that was to put/keep blood in me, right?
It’s not like you didn’t see me looking up at you
You even sorta-introduced me to your uncle. Kinda.
Erkan didn’t receive a response even after waiting for several minutes. That made him feel like he’d messed up somehow. Maybe he’d been too direct. Maybe she just didn’t want to talk to him anymore anyway. Then after about ten minutes, he actually got a reply.
we need to talk