Aziz is back with Salih for his second “lesson” with the Satranc-I Urefa board which is a precious reminiscence from his grandfather, Mehmet Sefik Korkmazer.
Number 4 is spun and takes Aziz to “Betrayal”. With a wry smile he comments that his first “Stop” was Hate, now Betrayal. Salih agrees that they have ended up in the mud of the world. Aziz comments that while he is a beginner with Satranc-I -Urefa, Betrayal is no stranger to him. Salih has to convince Aziz that it is OK for him to share his stories of betrayal, even though Aziz fears ”…overstepping the mark”. The older man’s role is to listen and guide.
Aziz tells a story from his childhood, where he used to get under the table rather than go to his bedroom as instructed when deals were being made. He learned a lot from the sincerity or otherwise of the adults concerned. Most of those people, who betrayed others have become, in Aziz words “…wasted” in later years. Salih recognizes the younger man’s wisdom from the story that began under the table. In describing how these people undermined each other, Aziz wonders how they can cause such harm to themselves and others, Salih puts it in a nutshell. He says that it is easy to betray others when you betray yourself first. The opposite of betrayal can be distilled into loyalty, to oneself and to others.
The theme of this episode could be “Betrayal and “Loyalty”” and this session with Salih could well serve as a warning to Aziz to be vigilant as the time for the art auction approaches.
We’re given a hint when Salih reminds Aziz of the song they discovered in the old vinyl, “I will never turn my back on you’, the gift of loyalty from a loving wife. Aziz has heard these words already from Feride to him personally and they will be very important soon as the story plays out. Salih sums up
“Don’t ever forget this, betrayal is turning your back, to god, to people to a lover, to a friend.”
Abdullah makes one of his mysterious visits, his attention focused on one of the clocks on Salih’s wall, the import of this not yet obvious.
He picks up an old sand timer. The significance of this move we will see later. There is a sense that Abdulla is preparing for something out of the ordinary.
Others are getting ready for a very important day. The auction for the miniature which so many people want is due to start at 4.00pm Altan is looking expectant as we see him standing in a café. He’s waiting for Aziz who lets us know that Altan has been preparing for the upcoming auction. Aziz tells him that a hard day is ahead of them, that time, that pervasive element in “Vuslat”, is of the essence and there is none to be wasted. They are meeting up with their bank director who is already awaiting them at a table.
Bulent is engaged in one of his bookish tasks – why do I always feel this intellectualism of Bulent’s is an affectation and that he is a pretentious snob? He’s meeting Tahsin, who bounces in, looking to be in great form.
But time is also ticking by for these two, says Bulent. Tahsin believes he has it all sorted out, Bulent reminding him not to take Aziz for granted.
Tahsin is full of himself. He has taken precautionary measures, stopping anyone in the Holding’s management from being able to access funds and Bulent challenges him, reminding him that he has overlooked a key factor.
Aziz gave up fighting his father over the precautionary order very easily. It sems Tahsin has not remembered the personal funds which Aziz has saved into a special locked box and which he will be able to use. Tahsin is dismayed. His political and business naivete, as opposed to his misplaced self-confidence, are emphasized when we are shown a close-up of the volume which Bulent has been repairing as he has conversed with Tahsin. It looks to be an old copy of “The Prince”, by Niccolo Machiavelli, the Renaissance textbook on self-serving leadership and control of others through the principle of the ends justifying the means, and by meticulous attention to detail. His copy looks to have been very well used, to the point of needing to be glued back together again.
Whilst, back in the café, Aziz is finding out about the precautionary measure blocking the five million lira withdrawal which he believes will be necessary to purchase the miniature, someone is searching his office for the key to his personal box. It is found embedded in the pages of a book on his shelf and removed. By whom? Is it an inside job?
A phone call to Mr Enes confirms that the blocking move o has been carried out by Tahsin and the bank manager can’t offer an alternative. Aziz is left with only the option of his personal money, put aside for his future with Feride.
We are left in no doubt that Bulent is responsible for the removal of Aziz’s key as he “lectures” Tahsin on Machiavelli. Tahsin still doesn’t get it.
Can is helping Feride in the new atelier. Yalcin has called in to visit for the first time and is happy both for her and for Emine in their new ventures. There’s clearly a warm relationship between him and young Can.
There is more to the visit, however. Feride has called Yalcin to hand over the gun that Can found and gave her. Yalcin comments that it’s a very old gun and wonders about its origins and ownership. Feride tells him that Hasibe has been searching for it at home. Feride is clearly nervous and worried that it might be connected with her aunt’s murder. Yalcin agrees to investigate,
Aziz has decided that precautions are no longer called for. To gain the miniature and his future with Feride, he must use any and all resources. There are now only a couple of hours left before the auction. He and Altan must access the funds in the box.
Tekin and Uncle Necmi have been waiting anxiously for Aneta , who has been out joyriding with Kerem and who is late returning She advises her grandson that he could well mode himself on Mr Necmi, “…a merciful gentleman.” Kerem expresses his gratitude, Necmi is self-effacing and embarrassed.
They have come to visit Alice. Sadly, there is little warmth from Aneta towards her daughter, because her memory problems create a barrier. Alice is desperate for her mother’s love and touch. Aneta* struggles to recall,
“Your eyes make me remember someone but I can’t understand.”
Kerem and the others watching this sad struggle to remember are deeply affected by the need for connection between mother and daughter. Aneta remembers a much younger Alice, and still confuses Sultan with her real
daughter. Necmi and Kerem resolve to keep the women hidden and safe, as in the past and not to tackle the Sultan/Alice confusion just yet.
Bulent plays himself at chess as assuredly as he plays with others’ lives. He looks intent, but angry, as he waits for the next moves in the wider chess match he believes he is directing.
A troubled looking Firat lurks around the door of the antique shop. Salih is in spring cleaning mode. Perceptively, he makes the young man welcome by asking him in to help. Firat is made to feel both welcomed and valued. In the back of the shop, Abdullah is settled in with his timer at the ready. Is he waiting for 4.00 pm also?
As Firat and Salih work together to clean the clocks, Firat tells the older man that he has come to learn about matters of justice from the older man. Salih acknowledges Firat’ s struggle but tells him that he must bring his feelings with him if he is to be helped. He needs foresight to understand how things work. Firat says he is trying to understand, Salih comments that the younger man is trying to sort out the mess he has made.
Salih’s advice is practical and sensible. If Firat wants to take charge of his life he should stop eating haram food. Good nutrition helps, as does trying to find a balance, sorting out the middle ground. Self-care is important.
As the auction draws near, others are dealing with their own difficulties. Hasibe still can’t find the gun. Yagmur is still chasing evidence in her father’s killing and Yalcin warns her off Kerem.
Firat finds his father working the sahlep concession and worried about his dad’s health, pays off his father’s long overdue debt with his ill-gotten gains. He’s also realizing that Sultan is rather more interested in Ahmet than in him
Altan and Emine are still dealing with unresolved proposal issues and daily practicalities like washing dishes…. The restaurant is doing well, so far.
Back at the Holding, the new design team is failing and interpersonal relationships are at an all time low. Mr Enes’ role is confusing…We are soon to find out that he is the “mole” used by Bulent to get information and probably to steal the key. Aziz has been to visit Feride to bolster his emotions before heading into the difficulties of the rest of the day. Arriving in the middle of the fraught staff discussions, he has suddenly had enough, sends everyone except Nehir away and promptly sacks her as a director, commenting that it’s a move long overdue. Not revenge, as she accuses, but merely cutting off a sick branch.
Salih has yet another young visitor. Feride has been struggling to repair the entrustment given to her by Aziz and she is seeking help from the local go-to man. As is his way, he gives her a story and a line from Mevlana’s poetry to reassure her that her love is directing her questions. He will come and help her to cover the hat correctly, now that she has understood the true meaning of the task.
Both turn and see that Uncle Abdullah is already counting down what will be an eventful afternoon.
Aziz is about to discover that the key to his personal savings box is missing with only a very limited time till the auction. He is aware that he has been betrayed. The rules of the auction state that a sizable deposit must be made an hour before bidding starts and that has been done by Kerem who has laid out 1 million. Aziz is willing to spend all the five million in his box but is in a race to get the box open and take it to the venue on time. He just makes it on time by commandeering a passing motorcycle.
Not only is he faced with the betrayal from within his company, but the locksmith he has called to open the box pulls a gun on him and tries to
steal the contents. Luckily, Altan is there with his gun and rescues the day ahead of Yalcin and his police squad.
There have been meetings and dealings between Kerem, who tells his grandfather that he knows that he is the “kelebek” and that he has been double dealing. Bulent is working hard to pull his grandson to his side. How this will play out we are left until the end of the episode to discover.
Fast forward to the auction, which quickly settles into a three-way contest, Bulent is smugly assured that he has the necessary edge as he and Aziz trade bids, with a third phone bidder who serves only as a distraction. This is the hapless Tahsin who still does not really understand the game he is in. The bidding is unprecedented, reaching six million and Aziz has no more to offer. Abdullah, back at the antique shop is still watching his timer.
Has Bulent truly won.? His six million may be enough, but the three young people are not out of the running yet. There is a twist in the tail of this auction. The former owner has left a condition that must be met before the successful bidder can take ownership of the miniature. That person
must be able to answer a question which the owner has left. If they can’t then the second bidder has the chance to do so.
Bulent is devastated when he realizes that he has no idea of the answer and is very angry. By, contrast, Feride smiles quietly. She knows both the question and the answer. Aziz knows she knows. Enraged at Aziz’s mockery Bulent warns him that his triumph will be short-lived and we are alerted to the ultimate betrayal to come, Feride does know. Kerem stops his joking and mockery, handing over to Feride and her woman’s wisdom. She does not need the question. The answer is the title of the song which the artist wrote to go with her miniature. Aziz and Feride are transported back to the first time they heard the song, “I won’t turn my back on you.”
Kerem collects the miniature, now the possession of the trio. Feride and Aziz arrange to meet him outside. By the time the couple leave the building, Kerem has joined his grandfather and womenfolk and is speeding off, miniature on board. Feride and Aziz are left stunned at this ultimate treachery.
I think a lot of us were well aware such a dirty trick was on the cards!
What hold does Bulent have over Mr Enes?
Can Mr Enes be redeemed?
Is Kerem serious about betraying Aziz and Feride?
What about Tahsin now?
What does Bulent really want?
Who’s pulling his strings?
Where to for Aziz and Feride?