Jane took off her socks and put them on top of the heating. She had no idea the lighthouse had radiators in all its rooms but it really came in handy that that was the case. She also took off her pants and shirt and decided to stay only in her underwear, lying on top of her jacket. The storm outside did not seem to subside, if anything it was getting worse by the minute. The rain was so strong that almost nothing could be seen, except when the light from the tower passed over it and revealed. But even then, it was just the pissed off sea and the razor sharp rocks that had been the whole reason to built a lighthouse there.
For many years, the tower had been managed by a human, a man that stayed there several months and then was replaced and had to come back again later on that year and so on. But rather recently, that had ended with the modernization of the tower and the installation of an automated system. That was the reason why Jane had been forced to kick the door several times until the old cement caved in to her efforts and the door flung open.
The machines and computers that controlled the tower now occupied most of the space but there were still spaces to be used by people, possibly for tourism or by the person that had to come and fix the system in the case of any failure or something like that. It all looked so new and clean, except for the ground level that was slowly flooding due to the storm. Jane had found an old folding chair and had used it to prevent the door from opening as she had broken it when entering.
She had been walking for days along the national park that surrounded the lighthouse so Jane knew exactly where she was or at least she had realized it when she found the tower when the rain started to get really dangerous. All the time she had been walking in that place, she had thought that animals were the ones to be careful about but it wasn’t the case. The storm had scared them all off and she was the only living being stupid enough not to take shelter when in had been obvious for many hours than the storm was going to arrive to the coast.
Deciding to check for food, Jane realized she didn’t really have much food on her backpack. At first, she had a lot of provisions she had brought from home like dried fruit and things like that but now her rations were very low and had nothing to calm her stomach, which was growling like a wounded wolf. She decided to go down to the middle level of the tower and check out a kind of deposit there was there. No idea why, but the door was opened so she had free reign to check everything out. There were cleaning products, paper, some tools to fix things, a big bag of sand (for some reason) and, finally, a survival kit that she opened in haste.
The kit was a very complete and Jane made a mental note to thank the people that managed the lighthouses when arriving to society. It had flares, a flashlight, more tools but also some beef jerky and juices in bags and candy. It wasn’t the most nutritious meal ever but Jane guessed it had been put there in the case of an accident or something. It wasn’t really to survive on for more than a week so Jane knew it was perfect for her as she believed she was only staying for one night.
She went back to the top floor with the whole kit and started to eat as she sat down again on her jacket. But realizing the floor was too cold, she decided to stand by the heating and look outside, in order no to get bored and maybe getting sleepy. She ate the beef jerky slowly: it was very hard to chew on it and had to yank pieces of one by one, so it took time to finish a single portion, which was good in order no to ran out of it.
Then she gasped and almost dropped her meal. She raised her head and looked outside, sure she had seen something when the light of the tower had hit it. But there was nothing, only water falling from the sky and the water from the ocean that was very violent. Aside from that, only the rocks and none of them had the shape of what she had seen.
Jane sat down again and realized it was impossible that a person would be outside the tower as the storm was very violent. And who she had seen did not seem like a normal person, it was like a very pale person, almost like the way people have painted ghosts over the centuries. The more she analyzed it all; she realized it was really silly. She had been silly to think about someone been out there and it had possibly being the light playing ticks on her tired mind.
She decided to look in the kit again and she found one of those blankets that keeps you warm without electricity (the one use by paramedics). She just used that as her blanket lying on her jacket and used her hands as a pillow. Before that, she had turned off the light on the top floor of the tower and everything was now in darkness.
Her eyes closed and then open and then closed only to open again a few seconds later. The light of the tower annoyed her but that really wasn’t the reason why she couldn’t sleep. Jane was, for the first time since she had begun her adventure, very scared. She didn’t mind the heat outside or sleeping in a tent or even the bugs. But there was something deep inside her telling her than there was something weird about that tower and, furthermore, that what she saw had not been an optical illusion of some kind.
Then, she heard knocking. The sound was weak but it was clear it was coming from below. Jane’s mind raced, thinking if maybe there really was someone in need out there or if there was really such a thing as ghosts or spirits. But for that last one, she had to punish herself in her mind: it was ridiculous that a grown woman than had learned a few things in life was now thinking there could be a ghost outside her door. It was preposterous and simply stupid.
So she closed her eyes but the sound coming from the ground floor didn’t really help her relax in order to sleep. Trying to be logical, she concluded that the sound had to be because she hadn’t put the chair in the perfect angle to really close the door. So the wind was banging on it and everything was shaky and moving. So she decided to stand up and go down the stairs in the dark, with the flashlight, in order to fix that sound that could make her crazy if she didn’t do something about it.
Barefoot as she was, she realized the ground floor was flood when she put her feet on the cold water. It reached ankles. She walked to the door and realized she had been correct in her conclusion. The door kept getting opened and closed and it was all because the fair was not good enough to keep it shut and the water out. So she tried to find something she could put on the handle of the door in order to close it for good.
She had started walking towards the stairs in order to go up again and look for something or at least some told to help her, when the door flung open and the wind entered messing her hair and everything. Water also came in, making her fall to the ground, hurting her knee. She reached for the door and tried to close it but the door wouldn’t move and the wind was too strong for her. She pushed and pulled and did everything she could, but everything coming in from the storm was making her weaker and weaker by the second.
It was then when, once again, she saw it outside. But this time she was sure she had seen it because it hadn’t been for a fraction of a second. This time, she had felt time get frozen and her eyes been able to detail every single part of the creature’s complexion. It was taller than her, very pale and with a larger mouth than any human she knew. Its feet and hands were very large and it watched her, very attentively. She noticed it had no pupils and that its eyes were very white too.
But that lasted a minute or so. In the next moment, the wind subsided for a second, which Jane used to push harder and close the door with a loud sound. There was no need to look for something to lock it with because the door had closed so violently it had become jammed in its place. Nevertheless, Jane stayed there for a long while, only breathing.
The next day, the storm disappeared. The weather outside was perfect, with bird singing and everything. After the door had closed, she had remained there for a while but she eventually found her way to the top and had some sleep. It took her a long while to open the door again and she did it fell of its hinges and into the flooded floor. Jane just went out and started walking along the coast, looking at the sea and how the storm was now there, again.
And she thought of the creature but even now she doubted its existence. Maybe the monster was inside her and she had just seen it in a dire moment.