The Cossack Terenty Tolkachev, who was standing beside the gun, commanded by the Ober Fireworks of Sins, joyfully lifted his rifle into the air after a well-aimed shot at one of the leaders of the Kokand racers who had jumped ahead of their dzhigits directly on the gun. He fell backward from his horse, arms spread wide. In the Cossacks it was considered a good shot - it means that the bullet hit right in the head ... A volley of thunder from a unicorn, thundering through the second, into the thick of the enemy, turned the Kokands to flight. Seeing the confusion and confusion among the cavalry of the enemy, rushing back, crushing their own wounded, he shouted: - Eka Vatarba (turmoil) has begun! After a while, the Kokands with a new fury and shouts of “Alla-Illa! ”Again stormed and received an even more crushing blow. To prevent the enemy from determining the true strength of his unit, V.R. Serov ordered to move the unicorn from one front to another. The buckshot fell into the thick of the enemy, inflicting enormous damage. Marked shooting, which the Cossacks are famous for, struck first of all the commanders of the Kokands, and at a considerable distance, causing the Kokand hordes to be disorganized and retreated. Having suffered significant losses and being discouraged by the severity of the Cossacks, Alimkul (then he did not know that there were only a hundred of them) ordered his troops to withdraw and make fires. Combat gun calculations and shooters from the falconet were instructed to bombard the Cossacks all night long, preventing them from improving their fortifications or at least a little rest. On the rest, not to mention the dream, there was no question. A grenade whistled through the air, and the very first explosion killed three horses at once. The cannonade, which continued all night, began, which mainly affected horses and camels huddled in the middle of the beam. Only a few Cossacks who held them were contused. Under the cover of night, the sarbazes repeatedly tried to crawl unnoticed to the location of the detachment and attack the Cossacks. But the natural qualities of the Cossacks: sensitive hearing and keen eyesight, along with military experience (many of the Urals were in the service for more than 15 years, had previously fought with Kokand, night forays of the enemy. Despite the harassing night cannonade and night shooting, without rest and food, no one was discouraged. Clear orders of the commander of the detachment Serov and centurion Abramichev, thanks to which a hundred took the chosen position in advance and successfully repelled the first massive attacks of the enemy - even among the novices they strengthened confidence in their superiority over the enemy, no matter how cruel and numerous. At night, after the eighth shot of a unicorn, his wheel broke. Fireworks Sins showed ingenuity, immediately commanding the rest of the gunners: - Well, guys, let's get the wheels from under the boxes with the shells. The Ural Cossacks Terentiy Tolkachev and Platon Dobrinin, who were singled out to help the gunners, helped the gunners to remove the wheels and fit them to the gun. However, since the hubs of the wheels were larger than the axes of the cannon, the fireworker ordered: “Tie with ropes to the unicorn!” Now the wheels of the gun could not spin while moving, and the centurion Abramichev sent two more Cossacks to Grekhov’s disposal: Vasily Kazantsev and Kuzma Bizyanov. On their strong backs and arms, the Ural Cossacks helped the gunners to move the unicorn. Esaul Serov selected the most intelligent and dashing Cossacks, his favorites, to help the gunners, realizing with bitterness that the most accurate arrows and gunners of the enemy will certainly try to hit it with a weapon and combat crew around it. One of his favorites was Terenty Tolkachev. All the Cossacks respected him for ingenuity, speed and amazing accuracy of shooting. Even from a smooth-bore rifle, he could remove a Kryakovny from a flock at an altitude of 100 meters. weapons - Terenty's joy knew no bounds. - With such a weapon, the Cossack is a hundred times rich! - He came up with an addition while staying in Turkestan, cleaning up a favorite rifle by the fire at the bivouac. The morning brought relief: now the Cossacks saw the enemy in their hands and could keep him at a distance, shattering with well-aimed shots of individual bold jigits, who from time to time tried to jump up to the location of the Ural hundreds from 100. Crowds of these tired riders who did not know their small, lean horses, in the high Malahai, were armed with long peaks and rifles. Some of them were dressed in armor and chain mail of their ancestors and waving curved swords. Along with smooth-bore weapons, those who were richer were British and Belgian rifles, as well as revolvers. From the side of Ikan, more and more new horse and foot units of the Kokand arrived.
It finally became clear that this was Alimkul's army, which, together with the Sadiq gangs, numbered from 10 to 12 thousands of people. Only later, Lieutenant Colonel Zhemchuzhnikov will be informed of the data received from the residents of Ikan: that the total number of troops of Mullah Alimkul, tied up on December 5 to the environs of Ikan was about 20 thousands. Serov ordered not to waste cartridges and shoot only mainly according to the artillery calculations of the enemy and the military commanders, who stood out among the rest of the equestrians with rich clothing, painted turban, expensive harness and horse saddles. In the morning the enemy shelling (Alimkul had 3 guns and around 10 falcons) intensified. And if at night among the Cossacks there were only four contused, then by noon, the fifth of December several people died from shotguns and bullets. The first of the Cossacks was Prokofy Romanov (early December 5 morning).
Most of the horses and camels were killed and the Cossacks under the constant fire of the enemy dragged them to the sides of the beam to protect the others from nuclear fragments and grenades. Meanwhile, from a distance across the steppe, the movement of enemy cavalry to the north became noticeable. The Cossacks began to look in the direction of the Turkestan road hopefully, hoping that this movement was probably connected with the approach of aid from Turkestan. Despite the fact that the night attack by Alimkul’s troops surrounding the hundreds of Serov was unexpected and swift, the есаsahul managed to send the postman to Turkestan with the news that the hundred took the battle with the superior forces of the enemy. Only later it turned out that the messenger had not reached the garrison. The experienced acesul Serov did not send the second postman, on the assumption that the strong sound of the night cannonade was to be heard in the city, and Lieutenant-Colonel Pearl was already surely taken steps to rescue the Cossacks from the environment. Will the detachment, which came to the aid of the Urals with hordes that moved towards him, go to Turkestan?
Soon a distant drone of artillery was heard. The Cossacks, even for a while, stopped firing, trying to hear any sound through the rattling of the rifle gun of the Sarbaz to hear any sound carried by the breeze from the north. The centurion Abramichev raised his hand, urging all the fighters to stand still for a minute. In the ensuing brief silence from Turkestan, several more shots were heard. Their sounds were so barely distinguishable that it was possible to assume that the battle was going somewhere on the outskirts of Turkestan. Maybe this is already Kokand attack the small garrison? From this thought alone, the icy cold enveloped the soul ... But here the Cossack Bartholomew Konovalov, famous for his sensitive hearing, whispered in a whisper:
- Chu, quiet! , - and Pavel Mizinov coughed up a deep pulmonary cough. He went to the other side of the beam and lay on the bedclothes next to Nikon Loskutov, who let him take a few puffs from his pipe. Religion (they observed the old rite) did not allow the Ural Cossacks to smoke, so they allowed themselves only during the hikes. Approaching their native lands, they got rid of the remnants of tobacco and broke pipes ... From the direction of the Turkestan direction, new distant sounds of gunfire were heard. - Hey, brothers, firing something closer! By God closer! “This is a detachment coming!”, His constable Panfil Zarschikov, a veteran of the Crimean War, authoritatively supported him. “Your nobility,” the constable sent out to Cries to Abramichev, “from the direction of Turkestan the sounds of an approaching battle are heard ...” “I hear, I hear!” Joy swept the Cossacks, many began to be baptized: indeed, glory to the saints - after all, the next day - December 6 was to mark the feast of St. Nicholas! Nicholas the saint ... The Ural Cossacks were Old Believers and firmly believed in the Lord ... From the time of the Battle of Poltava, in which the Ural Cossack regiment participated, Peter the Great complained about the Yaik Cossacks “with a cross and a beard for ever and ever” - allowed them to preserve old rituals and wear beards . He bestowed it on them for the victory of the daring Ural Cossack Ryzhechka, who had put the Swedish duel of two meters tall in a steel armor in a duel before the battle ...
The treacherous and quirky Sultan Sadik was in a state of confusion: it was impossible to stop the advancement of the “Uruses” detachment, who stubbornly went to the rescue of the Urals. Their reunification and the appearance of fresh cavalry among the Cossacks would have led to the final demoralization of Alimkul's troops. And it is only one detachment of the Kokands to take flight - the Cossacks will drive them day and night. This experienced enemy knew how to follow the Ural Cossacks in the steppe. They will neither eat nor sleep, but constantly pursue the enemy, because they know the law of the steppes well - on the shoulders of the enemy it is easier to drive ten times more.
If you give him only a couple of hours of respite, he will regroup and “rest”. Then the whole thing down the drain! And here Sadyk came up with another insidious trick: he walked around the Russian squadron, moreover, in the immediate vicinity of him - at a distance of a gun shot (so that they could see his cavalry) and moved to Turkestan. Then he sent a messenger to Alimkul and asked to send another five thousand horsemen for the same maneuver in the direction of Turkestan. This maneuver, according to his plan, was supposed to make the Russian detachment think that the Kokands had already smashed a hundred Serov and moved to the capture of the city. Indeed, the Russians turned back and followed him to Turkestan, not having reached any three or four miles to their comrades surrounded by the enemy. So, the trick of Sultan Sadyk was a success: the detachment of Second Lieutenant Sukorko hurried to the defense of Turkestan, before reaching the hundreds of Ural Cossacks who were surrounded. The sounds of shots began to move away and subsided altogether. A spark of hope, which was ignited in the souls of the Urals, began to fade. What happened to the detachment who came to the rescue? Is it broken? The sound of gunfire coming from Turkestan was not heard at all. The shelling of hundreds of Serov by the Kokands stopped for some time. In the steppe, at full speed, right on the position of the Ural residents, a jigit rushed with a white rag in his hand.
Having reached the improvised parapet built by the Cossacks, the messenger handed the centurion Abramichev a note in Tatar with the seal of Mulla-Alimkul. Scout Akhmet, in syllables, began to translate the text of the note to Esaul V.R. Serov, however, he said loudly: - Read aloud, let all the Cossacks hear! The message of Mullah-Alimkul (then this note was given to the commandant of the city of Turkestan) read: “Where are you leaving now? The detachment deported from Azret (as Kokandis called Turkestan) was defeated and driven back. Out of a thousand (this once again confirms that Alimkul was not sure about the exact number of Cossacks who opposed him — auth.), Your squadron will not have one! Surrender and accept our faith! I will not hurt anyone ... ”Esaul was silent, slightly bowing his gray head. On the high forehead, reddened by tension, a pulsating artery was clearly visible. It became clear that there was nowhere to wait for help. It remained to fight to the end. Each of the Cossacks, who were standing around Ahmet, who was reading the letter, suddenly realized that death was inevitable. Death became as tangible and inevitable as it was a firm and unshakable choice: death for Faith, Tsar and Fatherland! The short silence that reigned after Ahmet’s reading of the last sentence of Alimkul’s message was broken by the cold of Pavel Mizinov, who reloaded his rifle and exhaled decisively:
- Do not like! Oh, not love, brothers! “Uzhho to the bassurmans will cost our heads dearly,” said the constable Alexander Zheleznov, the most authoritative of the Cossacks with his remarkable strength and military prowess, “Oh, they will pay dearly! - Eh, let's set Karachun (let's massacre) Alimkulu! All the Cossacks enthusiastically boomed, loading their guns and preparing to respond to the shameful proposals of the enemy with fire. Esaul Serov rose from his seat, and everyone for a moment quieted down: - Thank you, Cossacks! I did not expect any other answer from you! You see how Alimkul you scared: instead of a hundred, he sees a thousand! The Cossacks laughed. Nervous tension was relieved. Vasily Rodionovich took off his cap and, repeatedly overshadowing himself with the sign of the cross, began to read “Our Father ...”. He was echoed by the voices of his comrades, merging into a single chorus of low baritones and basses, rolling in a quiet echo through the surrounding mounds and hills, rising in trickles of steam to the frosty sky sparkling from myriads of small snowflakes. The military people, from generation to generation, passing along the sharp edge of their fate between life and death, the Cossacks, like no one else, were perhaps religious. Ask anyone who has walked at least once in a similar way - and they will confirm to you: nothing develops religious feelings like war ...
Suddenly, a bright winter sun emerged from behind the clouds and illuminated the surrounding hills, giving the Orthodox a good sign. Despair or doubt had no place in their souls. Everyone made this choice for himself a long time ago ... Having created a prayer and hoisted his cap on his head, the centurion Abramichev adjusted his belt and commented in a commanding voice: “Hundred, in places!” Coming to battle! At the command of Abramichev, a hundred gave a friendly volley toward the enemy. Many of the most remote jigits of Alimkul, who were driving at a distance of a shot, fell from their horses. Mullah-Alimkul, having received a refusal from the Urals to surrender, and seeing that they were continuing to resist, went berserk. On the advice of Sultan Sadyk, he ordered to weave shields of reeds and brushwood and, tying them to two-wheeled arbas, “go tackle” to strengthen the Cossacks. Behind each of these shields, up to a hundred sarbaz could go in single file, avoiding well-aimed shots of the Urals. Approaching at a distance of one hundred sazhen to a beam in which hundreds of Serov sat down, they rushed to the attack, but invariably met volley fire from the Urals and turned to flight.
The fast twilight was on hand to the Kokands. Looking hard at the dank darkness of the night, the Cossacks waited for the assault on the part of the enemy, encouraged by the dayly success of the cunning maneuver of Sultan Sadyk. If the Alimkul gatherings had decided on such an assault, they would undoubtedly crush a handful of Ural brave men with numbers ... The frost grew stronger and the snow that fell late in the evening somewhat improved visibility at night twilight: the enemy’s movements were distinguishable at a distance more than a mile and a half the Cossacks could determine the direction the next strike of the enemy.
For two days, the Urals have not eaten or slept, and the cartridges have already come to an end. It was necessary to do something, to sit still and wait for the ammunition to completely run out - it was equal to suicide. Esaul Serov made the only correct decision, which the experienced Cossacks insisted on - to send messengers to Turkestan in order to find out the situation there and call a new detachment to help it, and in the morning itself - to make a breakthrough from the environment towards the Turkestan unit. Cavalier (a native of the nobility) Andrei Borisov himself expressed this idea to Abramichev and volunteered to volunteer to deliver the despatch of Esaula Serov to Turkestan. Having military experience for more than 11 years (and against the Kokands, and in the Crimea, he already had the Order of St. George of the first degree), he volunteered to go first to the garrison alone on foot. Paying tribute to his courage, esaul Serov, nevertheless, decided to send him astride, accompanied by two or three more people, in order to act for sure and without fail to deliver the dispatch to Turkestan. Borisov, together with Pavel Mizinov, Varfolomey Konovalov and Kirghiz Akhmet, appeared before the captain and captain Abramichev. Vasily Rodionovich looked at their equipment and stopped his eyes on Mizinov’s pale and thin face:
- You, the brother is more necessary here, and besides, not healthy. Do not seek, darling, - he refused to send him to the people of Borisov. Serov was happy for this courageous Cossack, who, after assigning him the rank of centurion, was then demoted for his self-righteousness and revelry. Now, he proved himself well in the campaign, encouraged the Cossacks with words and skillful actions in battle, cemented his presence with a hundred. He really, was needed here, and not in the desperate sortie of brave souls who volunteered to break through to Turkestan ... After all, Andrei Borisov and his people were almost to certain death ...
- Well, what, the Cossacks, - he turned to the others, including Ahmet, who already many times proved dedication with blood and blood, - you know what you are going on, you also know our customs - we only assign hunters with such errands ... your nobility, everyone volunteered for his own hunt, ”answered Andrei Borisov, looking around at the rest of his comrades. “So your task will be to ride around the enemy on the right side and up the mountains — to get into Turkestan.” Deliver the dispatch and this note (the message of Mulla-Alimkul) to the commandant and call for reinforcement to our detachment. If we do not wait for help in the morning, in any case we will break out of the encirclement along the Turkestan road. So pass it on! - Yes, your nobility! - the cavalier Borisov answered him and took under a peak. Wearing rifles over coats, he and Konovalov were about to jump into the saddles, when the еса sul and the centurion took out their holsters and handed them their revolvers: - It will not hurt! With God! - Serov said firmly and patted Andrei Borisov on the shoulder. In one fell swoop, the messengers jumped into their saddles and disappeared into the darkness of the night - after Ahmet. Less than half an hour, as from the side where the Cossacks galloped, shots rang out ... after a while they returned. As it turned out, a mile and a half they stumbled upon an enemy picket (fortunately, Ahmet galloped ahead) and, having shot at him, turned back to a hundred. Despite the setback, Andrei Borisov again began to insist to go alone on foot, but Serov listened to Ahmet’s advice and ordered him to go tops to the left of the enemy’s position. So did. Instead of Bartholomew Konovalov with Borisov and Akhmet, the dashing Cossack Akim Chernov galloped, the best horseman in a hundred, who distinguished himself many times in night raids and the capture of tongues. The newly started snowfall was most welcome. The scouts again embraced their comrades, crossed themselves and dissolved in the snowy haze. In the early morning dawn break of the next day, the Cossacks saw that the enemy was already prepared about 20 mantelets (piles) and shields of reeds and brushwood, connected overnight. They were placed hundreds from different sides of the position, which indicated that the enemy finally decided to simultaneously attack the strengthening of the Urals.
The situation was more than critical. Desiring to prolong the time as much as possible, Esaul Serov decided to begin negotiations with the enemy. Having warned the Cossacks, he stepped forward a few steps and waved his hand to the enemy, indicating that he wanted to enter into negotiations. The Kokandets with a gun came out from the enemy side. To the surprise of Serov, he spoke in pure Russian, even without much emphasis. For a long time he did not agree to put the weapon on the ground, referring to the fact that it does not prevent him. Nevertheless, the ésaul convinced him that it was not customary to negotiate this way. At the desire expressed by Serov to talk personally with Mulla-Alimkul, the parliamentarian said that “he is a sovereign and cannot move far from his line ...”. At the same time, the Kokandets offered the есsaula himself to go to the location of Alimkul’s troops and advised him to surrender to his mercy, giving the most flattering promises. Meanwhile, manteletas and shields began to roll toward the strengthening of the Urals, and the ésaul rebuked the Kokandtsa that the offensive was never done during negotiations. Cossacks, having prepared to shoot at the enemy, shouted to Esaula Serov: - Your honor, leave soon, we will shoot now! After that, he returned to the position. It was won about two hours of time. Only later, Vasily Rodionovich will understand that it was these two hours that saved the lives of those Cossacks from the Urals hundred who survived after a three-day Ikan battle.
Ural Cossacks met with heavy fire approaching enemy shields to their positions. In response, the enemy led incessant and fairly well-aimed shooting, not allowing the gunners to move the unicorn gun from front to front. Four times Kokands rushed to the attack from behind the manthels, but the Cossack volley fire again and again forced them to retreat to their shelters. All the horses of the Cossacks were finally killed by artillery fire and enemy shots. The victims grew exponentially: by noon, the 3 conscript, the 33 Cossack and the 1 stand were killed, the 4 gunner was wounded, and several Cossacks were wounded. Death was everywhere. She was in the eyes of plaintively wheezing horses, she was on the foreheads of gravely wounded Cossacks writhing in pain at the bottom of the beam. Despite the merciless fire of the enemy, as well as a large number of dead and wounded, the heroic actions of several Cossacks: the constable Alexander Zheleznov, Vasily Ryazanov and Pavel Mizinov — supported the fighting spirit of the fighters. Being a marksman, Vasily Ryazanov "shot" one after another of the leaders of groups of Kokands who tried to storm the fortifications of the Urals. Yes, he did it with jokes and arguing with his comrades: now on Shmat lard, then on the bottle of the first bag. Pavel Mizinov, under shelling, dug out bags of ammunition from the rubble and carried them around, encouraging his comrades with a cheerful song and joke. Having dragged the seriously wounded fireworks: Grekhova and Ognivov from the gun, and seeing that other gunners were also wounded, Terenty Tolkachev, who had learned with his mind how to load the gun and aim, began to conduct gunfire with the help of his comrades: Cossacks of Plato Dobrinin, Vasyantsentyans, and the people who had gone to work. . The very first shot, caught in the midst of the advancing enemy, smashed the nearest mantellet to the closest ones and injured the crowd of the enemy, who was hiding behind an improvised cover from the brushwood. At the same time, the mantelet caught fire, and all the attackers and those who had taken shelter turned to flight. Ognivov's fireworker who did not believe his eyes, hastily tied up with gunners, climbed up on the parapet and, rising to his full height, swinging his cap, shouted: -Ura-aaa! Kick them! Well, Terenty, naddai more! Ah, well done!
The Cossacks took heart, and in the meantime, Terentiy Tolkachev, aiming a little higher, sent a second charge in pursuit of the fleeing Kokands. So the brave handful of the Ural Cossacks lasted about another hour. At about one o'clock in the afternoon it became clear that with such a strong fire of the enemy artillery — by evening there would be no one left from the detachment. Esaul Serov ordered to rivet a unicorn cannon, break down the guns left after the killed Cossacks, and prepare for a breakthrough along the Turkestan road. “Brothers, Cossacks!”, He turned before the breakthrough to the remnants of his hundred (about sixty people remained under arms, including wounded men), “we will not disgrace the glory of Russian weapons!” On Nicola - today - Nicholas the Wonderworker with us! Having created a prayer, the Ural Cossacks prepared for an attack. The mighty voice of the centurion Abramichev, as if nothing had happened, famously rang in the frosty air: - Hundred-and-a, and on the first or second calculate! Column by two-ee build! Esaul ordered to shoot only from the knee, sighting. Moving in short dashes ... The first numbers are shooting, the second numbers are running over a hundred sazhen, on the knee, and loading guns. Then, the first numbers under their cover make a dash ... The only surviving non-commissioned officer Alexander Zheleznov, a bogatyr physique with a thick, smoky mustache and a beard, threw off his coat and, putting a bayonet to the rifle barrel, raised it high above his head, shouting: - C god orthodox Two deaths do not happen, but one can not escape! Let us set Karachun (massacre) to the infidels! With a cry: “Hurray!”, The Ural Cossacks unanimously rushed to the attack ... The retreat lasted until 4 hours of the evening.
Hundreds immediately came under enemy cross-gun fire. However, the coordinated actions of the Cossacks, who covered the movement of each other with marksmanship, still left the hope that some of the fighters could get to their own. In any case, they came out from under the disastrous artillery fire. Here, in the open, they could somehow take advantage of their rifled weapons, keeping the enemy at a respectful distance. It turned out that the individual horsemen of Alimkul were also armed with rifles, and soon, after targeting, they began to strike down one by one the Cossacks, who were moving in an alluvial column along the road. To the last, the Urals helped wounded their comrades to move along the road, supporting them and firing right and left. No one left or betrayed his comrades. The tacit ancient law, concerning the responsibility of all for the cowardice or betrayal of one of the warriors, adopted at one time without any changes by the Cossacks from the Golden Horde, said: “If only one out of ten runs, or two, then everyone is killed. If all ten run, and the other do not run, the hundred are all killed ... On the contrary, if one or two courageously engage, and ten do not follow them, then they are also killed ... And finally, if one out of ten is captured alone, and the other comrades do not release him, they are also killed ... ”
In the eyes of the Cossacks, their comrades who had fallen on the road and who were dead on the road, were dead and seriously wounded, and were subjected to inhuman abuse by a cruel enemy. Kokandians chopped them up with swords, stabbed them with pikes and cut off their heads. Among the relatively cowardly tribe of Kokands, it was considered the highest military prowess to bring the head of the Urus, for which a generous reward was paid from the treasury of Mullah Alimkul. For the head of the Cossack - it was supposed to be five times more than usual! And each time the mercenary possessor of such an ominous trophy was awarded the mark by a bullet of other Cossacks, tightly clutching a rifle, saying goodbye to their deceased friend: - Goodbye, comrade! Having abandoned their outer clothing, the Cossacks marched under enemy fire almost 8 versts. Cavalry raids from behind the hills on both sides of the road alternated with repeated attempts by Alimkul to put a barrier in the path of the Urals column. Then the mighty Zheleznov, the apt Tolkachev, Mizinov, Ryazanov and others who covered the retreat of the main group (with the wounded) moved forward and, having scattered the chain, made a sharp accurate fire at the enemy’s barrier, forcing him to lose dozens of corpses and retreat.
Having received a through wound to the shoulder and a concussion in the hand, Cossack Plato Dobrinin (from those who helped the gunners) walked the whole way, leaning on the shoulder of the Esaula while simultaneously covering him from enemy bullets on the right side. And the rakish master and shooter Terenty Tolkachev, despite several wounds, covered the captain on the left, aptly and deftly striking every rider who approached them from the surrounding hills closer than two hundred fathoms. Vasily Ryazanov, who was wounded in the leg during the march, fell, but, having hurriedly bandaged a fragmented leg with the help of his comrades, he jumped up again, and walked the rest of the way to the end, shooting back from the enemy’s raids. When breaking through another barrier on the road to Turkestan in the distance, Mulla-Alimkul himself appeared on a hill on a white suit of argamak. Vasily Ryazanov contrived and from the knee, carefully aiming, knocked the horse under Alimkul. Meanwhile, the column of the Urals, initially built by the centurion Abramichev, was noticeably thinning out, and soon they were stretched by a chain (lava) several hundred meters long. Occasionally, individual latniks and kolkazchniki of the Kokand cavalry could fly into the middle of the chain, where the есаsoul and other Cossacks walked under the arms of their wounded comrades. However, each time Kokands paid dearly for such attacks - being shot at close range by the Cossacks. Sometimes it came to melee, in which the Cossacks threw horsemen from their horses, deftly clutching at their peaks and harnesses, or cutting their limbs with sharp swords. In one of these raids, Pavel Mizinov bent down to pick up a fallen ramrod, and thrown at the peak, piercing his left shoulder, nailed it to the ground. Overcoming the pain, he still jumped to his feet and ran up to his comrades, who helped pull the peak out of his shoulder. They walked, overcoming wounds and fatigue. Everyone was aware that as long as he was with his comrades, they would support and cover him with fire. But as soon as he fell or separated from his own - inevitable death awaited him immediately.
Kokand riders chose a new destructive tactic: behind their back they brought sarbazov with guns and dropped them in close proximity along the chain of the Urals. Those who settled down in the snow, shot the Cossacks almost at close range. The bloody trail, stretching along the Cossack hundreds, was getting wider ... The brave centurion Abramichev, who did not want to remove the officer's overcoat and hats, was wounded first in the temple, but continued to walk in the front ranks of the Cossacks with Zheleznov. After that, the bullet hit him in the side, but he, dragging the whipped blood with his torn shirt, continued to go. When the bullets struck both his legs at once, he fell to the ground and shouted to the Cossacks: “Chop rather your head, I can’t go!” He raised himself on his elbows, but was hit by the last bullets and fell from his powerless face into the snow. Not able to help him, esaul Serov and other Cossacks forgave him as if he were dead, saying: “Forgive us, for Christ’s sake ... It was already getting dark. All Cossacks in the blood, wounded two, three times, continued to walk, overcoming all limits of human capabilities. They walked more and more slowly: a large number of wounded, who could still be dragged on themselves and numerous wounds to the legs, made it impossible to go faster. Those who could hold weapons, picked up bags of ammunition and broke the guns of their fallen comrades, continuously firing from the enemy's cavalry. Until Turkestan, there was still more 8 versts. Still hoping that help from the garrison would still come, the esaul Serov, nevertheless, was already considering the possibility of fixing in the half-ruined Tynashak fortress, which is half way to Turkestan. Lieutenant Colonel Zhemchuzhnikov, giving him orders to speak in reconnaissance, mentioned this fortress as a possible refuge in case a hundred stumble upon considerable enemy forces ... Suddenly, from the side of Turkestan, shots were heard. The Cossacks stopped and calmed down, listening to the twilight silence of the night, interrupted by the crackling guns of the Kokand cavalry. The whistling of bullets over the heads of the Urals became less frequent, and because of the height in the direction of Turkestan, the booming shots of the Russian detachment, which had broken through to help them, resumed. Soon the crowd of Kokands from the city side drained away and soldiers running towards them appeared on the hill. Above the surrounding hills spread native: -Ura-ah!
Insignia on hats "For the cause of Icane 4, 5 and 6 December 1864 of the year"
The Cossacks, who supported each other, began to be baptized and embraced. Tears streamed down their cheeks ... Help arrived just in time. The Cossacks were so weak that, reunited with the detachment of lieutenants Sukorko and Stepanov, they could not go on their own. A day later, on December 8, Mullah Alimkul withdrew from the camp in Ikan and with his army left for Syr-Darya. Taking with him the Ikan aksakal and all residents with property, he set fire to their sakli. Local residents who survived in the village (including the father of the Ikansk aksakal and his wife) said that the number of Alimkul's troops was over 20 000 people and that in the battle with hundreds of Esaula Serov, the Kokand lost their main commanders killed by 90 and more than 2 and 000 people lost by the killed XNUMX people. How many were wounded among the enemy of the Urals is unknown. The thin plan of Mulla-Alimkul: secretly make his way to Turkestan and, capturing it, cut off the forward detachments of the Russians who were in Chemkent - was crossed out by the steadfastness of the Ural hundred that got in its way. He silently rode on a bay horse, bitterly recalling his favorite white argamak, left in Icahn, and did not listen to the flattering words of Sultan Sadyk about the strength of the incalculable troops of Mulla-Alimkul and about new fraudulent plans to attack the "Uruses." Lies and deception, robbery and bribery, cruelty and violence littered his way. And despite all this, and the presence of a large army, he did not feel safe. He was afraid of death. Two days ago, he felt her ice breath so perceptibly when his favorite horse collapsed under him from a bullet of a Russian Cossack. He, the ruler of the Kokand Khanate, surrounded by a huge retinue of selected riders, could have been killed, like an ordinary sarbaz or a jigit, whose corpses littered the steppe under Ikan? Who are these Russian Cossacks? The fiend of shaitan! What is their strength? From childhood, he was brought up on the indisputable truth that Kokand rulers and sages whispered to him: who has strength and wealth - he has power! And how to understand the words of the captive Urus, who, by his order, did not begin to kill, but were taken to Mulla Alimkul for questioning ... The whole wounded Cossack could not stand, but he hung on the arms of the Sarbaz with difficulty holding him. On the offer to surrender and accept the Mohammedan faith, he spat a blood clot on the horse’s trampled snow of the Turkestan road. And then, involuntarily filled with respect for the bleeding "Urus", Mulla-Alimkul dismounted, came closer to him and asked:
“Why do you believe in your god?” After all, is God one? What is your strength? The translator leaned over the already losing Cossack who whispered: “God is not strong, but in truth!” Mullah Alimkul continued thoughtfully to ride on the boundless steppe, which began to plunge into a golden-pink sunset, reflecting on the words “Urus”. He thought that if thousands of his soldiers could not defeat a hundred “Russian Cossacks,” what would happen if thousands of Russians come?
* * *
On the fourth day, a detachment was sent to collect the corpses of the Ural Cossacks. They were all decapitated and mutilated. The corpses of the disfigured Kokands were taken to Turkestan, where they were buried in the cemetery. And only after 34, in 1898, there was a man who put diligence and effort to perpetuate the memory of the heroes of the Ican case by building on the mass grave of a brick-brick chapel monument