فصل 15

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فصل 15

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متن انگلیسی فصل

CHAPTER FIFTEEN

Topkapi

‘Gail!’ I said. ‘How do you know my room number? I’m called Alan Davies here.’

‘Rik told me about his plan, Lenny,’ Gail replied. ‘I’m so happy that you’re working on the movie again.’

‘Wait until you see me,’ I said.

‘I want to see you now,’ Gail said. ‘I want to show you this message. It was waiting for me here, at the hotel.’

I thought carefully. This was the time to find out what Gail thought about my new self.

‘I’m going down to reception for a few minutes,’ I said. ‘If you don’t find me there, come up to my room in fifteen minutes.’

‘OK, Lenny. I’ll see you,’ Gail said, and she hung up. I took the elevator down to reception and I sat in a corner seat. I picked up a newspaper. Gail soon appeared and she took a seat by one of the tall windows. I put down my newspaper and walked across to her. She looked at me in surprise. Then she smiled.

‘Brent, my dear, are you feeling better?’ she asked.

I smiled back, and nodded my head.

‘I’m so pleased,’ Gail went on. ‘You had such a terrible headache on the plane.’

I smiled again, waved and walked over to the elevator.

The make-up was great! I now looked so much like Brent that his co-star couldn’t see that I was really Lenny Samuel!

I went back to my room. After ten minutes, there was a knock at the door.

‘Come in!’ I shouted. I tried to sound like Brent.

Gail came into the room, then stopped.

‘What are you doing here?’ she said. ‘I thought this was Lenny’s - I mean Alan Davies’ room.’

I smiled, stood up and kissed her cheek.

‘Hi, Gail,’ I said in my own voice.

‘Lenny!’ Gail said. ‘That make-up is fantastic! I saw Brent ten minutes ago in reception, you look just like him.’

‘That was me in reception,’ I replied with a smile. ‘Please sit down, Gail.’

She immediately became serious again. ‘This was waiting for me when I arrived,’ she said, and she handed me a small white envelope. The Swissotel address was printed on the envelope and the message inside it was written on Swissotel notepaper.

‘It’s just like the message in Buenos Aires,’ I thought. ‘That was on Alvear Palace notepaper.’

Welcome to Istanbul, Miss Lane, I read. You waited at the Cafe Pernambuco in Buenos Aires. That showed that you could be trusted. You can have the photos on your return to California. But you will have to pay $250 000 for them. I will contact you again in L.A.

I gave the message back to Gail.

‘I’m very worried,’ she said. ‘I’m not worried about the money. I can afford to pay. But if I pay for these photos now, how will I know there are no more copies of them?’

‘You won’t! And I’m sure there are,’ I said. ‘But this is one problem that can wait until we get back to L.A. When this person contacts you again, I’ll be around to find out who the blackmailer is.’

‘You’re wonderful, Lenny,’ Gail said with a little smile.

I didn’t say anything. Gail went to her room to get some rest.

Soon, my phone rang again. This time, it was Rik. He said he was on his way up to see me.

‘Wow!’ Rik said, a few minutes later. ‘Julie and Steve did a great job. You too, Len! You look and sound just like Brent! Now, let me tell you what’s going to happen tomorrow. We’re shooting at the Topkapi Palace. It would be good if you visited the area by yourself today. Look around the outside of the palace, and explore the streets which lead to it.

‘You’re going to be Brent’s double. Tomorrow, you’ll have no problems getting onto the set. I’ve arranged a pass for you in the name of Alan Davies. All you’ve got to do tomorrow is to sit and watch the shooting. Then, very early the next day, we’ll shoot the last outdoor scenes here in Turkey. First, we’ll shoot the scene in which you’ll be Brent’s double. In that scene, Brent and Gail are together, and Brent drives Gail away from the palace in a Ford Mustang.’

‘Not many people know this,’ Rik went on. ‘But Brent can’t drive a car. He’s frightened of cars! So you’ll act in the first part of the car chase instead of Brent.’

‘What do you mean by “car chase”, Rik?’ I asked.

‘Yeah, well - when Brent drives Gail away in the Mustang, another car follows it down the hill, towards the Golden Horn. Later on, we’ll shoot a real car chase through Istanbul - we don’t need the stars to be involved in that. We’ll use stunt-doubles dressed like the movie actors. But the first part - the escape from Topkapi - has to be shot in close-up. It has to look real,’ Rik explained. ‘So you and Gail will be in the car. All you have to do is to drive quite quickly down the hill. The Mercedes containing the bad guys will follow you.’

‘That sounds easy,’ I replied.

Then I asked Rik about the last couple of days of shooting in B.A.

‘No problems,’ Rik said. ‘There was one strange thing, though. At Ezeiza Airport, an Argentine police captain called Garcia spoke to me. He said that he had been keeping an eye on Gail too. Do you know anything about that, Len? Who’s Garcia?’

‘A friend of mine,’ I said with a smile. ‘I’m glad to hear that nothing bad happened.’

‘Arabella and Annie still believe that you were involved in the attack at the Recoleta Cemetery,’ Rik added. ‘I hope they don’t recognize you in this makeup. They will make a lot of trouble if they do! Gail is the only other person who knows that Alan Davies is really Lenny Samuel.’

Soon, Rik said goodbye and went off to get some sleep. I took a cab to the Topkapi Palace. I had my guidebook with me, but I didn’t read it. I looked out of the window of the cab at the fascinating city of Istanbul. I had read enough to know that the Topkapi Palace was over five hundred years old. When I got there, I discovered that the palace was much, much bigger than I had thought it was. The guidebook said that the four magnificent courtyards and the surrounding buildings had once been the home of more than five thousand people. It was going to be difficult to protect Gail in such a large area.

I spent an hour walking around the outside of the palace. There was no time to go into any of the beautiful buildings that day. I tried to remember which streets led away from the gateway, down to the Golden Horn. Standing outside the palace entrance, I looked out over the Bosphorus and the Sea of Marmara, and then down the hill to Sultanahmet Square and Aya Sofia.

I walked down to Aya Sofia and looked at that magnificent building, which was more than fifteen hundred years old. First it had been a church, and then a mosque, but now it was a museum. It was stunning.

I walked for a while among the crowds of people in the streets. I liked Istanbul, though it was as different from L.A. as anything could be! At last, I waved for a cab and rode back to the hotel. I was excited about the next couple of days. Pretending to be a movie star was going to be fun!

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