I stood with my mates after watching Mike leave. I still could not believe it. He had the same face, the same eyes, the same everything. But at the same he was someone else, someone different that was almost unrecognizable by how he acted. This boy, Mike Olivares, had a strong personality that no one could bend to their will. He seemed strong, confident, sure of himself in a way that Mehmet was not. Mehmet was more laid back, shy, vulnerable, and more like a little boy that needed to be protected from bad influences.
“I can’t believe the resemblance to Mehmet” said Louis.
“I can definitely agree to that” added Liam.
“But if it’s not Mehmet, then how is it that he looks exactly like him?” asked Niall. “How do we know they’re not related?”
“He has a different last name than Mehmet did. His last name is Olivares, whereas Mehmet’s was Narvaéz” said Harry.
“Surnames are irrelevant” said Liam. “People have different last names, and they’re still related.”
That was true, but I wasn’t so sure if that was the case here. I just couldn’t get him out of my head. So alike and yet so different at the same time. It’s like this: Mike is more refined and more confident. Mehmet was shy and vulnerable.
These were two very different personalities that didn’t match one another.
“Zayn, you’ve been awfully quiet” said Harry. “What’s on your mind?”
I looked at my mates. “I feel the need to get to know him. But at the same time I need to find Mehmet.”
“Why would you need to find that loser?” said Louis, expressing the same dislike he always felt for him.
“He’s not a loser.”
“He’s a thief and a liar who wanted to get close so he could share in our fame!” said Louis.
“He was not that kind of person. And when we first met him, we weren’t even famous or anything close” I said. “And as far as him being a thief. I’m not so sure he was one ever.”
“What?” asked Louis in disbelief. “Now you’re defending that nutter?”
“Why would he steal from us?” I asked.
“The money was in his bag. That’s the evidence and that’s how it was!” insisted Louis.
Yeah, the money was in Mehmet’s bag. It was and yes I could not deny that. Still something in my gut told me that perhaps what seemed like evidence, was perhaps not the real evidence that we all believed to be credible. Something told me that boy was innocent, and if that was the case, then we committed an injustice against an innocent child who was blameless and innocent of such a crime. It meant that I’d let him down, and that was guilt that I was going to have to live with for the rest of my life.
I just hoped that I could find Mehmet, and apologize to him for how I treated him, for how I told him angrily to bugger off and to never come back. I remember the sad expression on his innocent looking face. I’d hurt him and now I felt bad.
“Look, I’m hungry. Let’s get going” demanded Louis.
The rest of us followed him and headed to a restaurant here at the mall. Harry followed Louis, while Liam and Niall walked beside me.
“What’s on your mind mate?” asked Liam.
I shook my head lightly. “I’m not sure. Maybe that Mehmet might have been innocent the whole time and that maybe he didn’t steal that money.”
“You’re sure about how you feel?” asked Niall.
I nodded. “Yes, I feel that he didn’t do it. I have no idea how it is that I feel sure, but I do.”
“But what about when we found the money in his bag?” asked Liam.
“What if it was planted?” I asked.
“You think Louis would be capable of doing something like that?” asked Niall.
I really wasn’t sure of what Louis was capable of doing.
“I don’t know. But he never liked Mehmet for nothing. He always picked on him and said hurtful things to him every chance he got. And then suddenly the money shows up on his bag coincidentally?”
Neither of them said anything. It was like they too were pondering on the possibility.
“Louis’s not capable of doing such a thing. I can’t believe it. I won’t believe it” said Liam.
“Well I’m choosing to do what I should have done a long time ago, give Mehmet the benefit of the doubt. He deserved that much from us. He deserved better” I said.
“Well what if you’re wrong?” asked Liam. “What if he did take the money?”
“My instincts and guts tell me something different. And call me crazy if you want, but every time I’ve trusted my instincts, they’ve usually almost always been right. I have to trust that they are right.”
Liam who seemed resistant to the idea that Louis could have perhaps planted that money on Mehmet’s backpack, didn’t argue. Still, I knew he probably preferred it if Mehmet had taken the money than to believe that one of our best mates would do such a thing.
“I think Zayn’s right” said Niall. “Maybe we should give that boy the benefit of the doubt.”
“We need to find Mehmet wherever he is” I said.
“But where can he be?” asked Niall.
Yeah, where was the boy at? Another odd thing was that Mike looked to be about seventeen years old, and Mehmet for sure was about that age at this point.
It was just an odd situation.