In the middle of a raging storm, the waves were slamming his motor boat mercilessly. His drenched body was shivering and his eyes could hardly see anything. He was clutching the wheel with all his strength as his mind was vacillating between the bottom of despair and some remnants of hope that he might be able to pull through to safety somehow. It felt like he was dying slowly with every cruel gust of the wind. In a monumental display of power, Thick low and dark clouds completely obscured the sky pouring down an endless barrage of blinding sheets of water. Frightful claps of thunder mixed with seemingly unstoppable streaks of lightening would melt the most fearless of hearts.
It was not the first time he sailed in this part of the sea. Fact is this was his favorite fishing spot. He knew the area like the back of his hand. Occasionally, the weather got rough. But it never got so ferocious before. He knew there was a lighthouse to the east. But he also knew that the tiny island where it stands is surrounded by sharp jarring rocks and dangerous riptides at the best of times. The question weighing heavy on his mind was, whether he would be able to see the sweeping beam of light? Squinting, he tried to see around him which way was the light house. His compass was not working and eventually his radio went dead as well. Finally, in a huge swell of the sea, his boat was lifted up very high and before he could realize what happened, he found himself under the overturned boat in the tumultuous waves. He struggled to free himself and fought his way to the surface. He was wearing his life jacket, so he stayed afloat, but his strength was waning rapidly. Soon enough he felt the sharp edges of some rocks cutting his flesh. It felt like he was being butchered alive. There was no escaping it until another huge swell of the surf carried him again so high that he was almost certain that once he lands on these rocks, he would be torn to pieces. But the wave instead pushed him past the rocks and onto the dirty rough sands of the island. He lay there for a short while to catch his breath. Then he began to wonder, where is the beam of the lighthouse? He staggered to his feet, and started to look around. There it was, the ghastly silhouette of the tall building at a close distance…no beam was coming through. He stumbled towards it at the hope of at least getting shelter there. When he reached the building, he went around it looking for the entrance. A flight of stone steps led to the small wooden door. Try as he might to open the door to no avail. Knocking was no help either. His wounds aching, his head throbbing and his arms weary, a sudden wind gust tossed him against the wall and down the few stone steps into the mud. He pulled himself up from the ground and then decided to try to find another entrance. He saw a little building near the door. The flimsy door to this one was flung open. He was glad to throw himself inside. It looked like a storage room, with all the contents strewn around in complete disarray. He rested there on the floor for a short while, and then he started to look around. Is there anybody in this place? Where is the keeper? As he strained his eyes in the dim light, he saw another door inside. He figured it might be a closet. He went and opened it easily. To his surprise, it lead to an underground corridor. He walked in, opened the door on the other end, to find himself inside the vast bottom of the light house. He called as loud as he could, “Hey, anybody here? Hello…anybody?”
When there was no answer, he began to climb the spiral staircase slowly holding fast to the railing. The higher he went the more frightening the roaring of the storm outside became.
As he approached the top his eyes seemed to get sharper. He saw a band of ghouls dancing before him. They were shape-shifting constantly. Swaying and syncing their savage screams to the roaring of the wind outside. He almost lost his grip on the railing and was about to tumble down the stairs. After slipping down a few steps, he grabbed the railing defiantly, straightened himself and resumed his climb into the midst of the apparition. It dissipated as abruptly as it appeared. Soon he was at the door of the main room at the top. The door was locked. Despite his bruises, he threw the whole weight of his body against it, and busted it open. He fell inside a tidy big and very well decorated room. It looked like a room in a wealthy mansion. Beautifully furnished and tastefully adorned. The only difference was the flight of stairs at the center leading up to the huge motorized mirror with the light housing and the high glass walls all around. All the switches were off. Nobody was inside. He sat in one of the luxurious arm chairs panting and wondering, “Where is the keeper or keepers of this place? What happened here? Why is this place so well furnished? And above all why are all the switches off? After all, this is…a lighthouse?” there was no answer to any of his questions. As he became rather comfortable, he spoke aloud, “If I keep sitting in this cozy chair I shall not be able to stand up again.” so he pulled himself up, walked to the switches and started to turn them on one by one. The grinding hum of the motor started slowly and the huge mirror began to turn as the light became bright and the great beam streaked into the endless darkness outside in a sweeping circular motion. Now he walked slowly to the comfy chair again and fell into it to rest. He wanted to close his eyes but the powerful light would not go away. So as he opened his eyes again, he saw a very bright figure gradually materialize out of the central light and into the room. He was mesmerized. Before he could ask any questions, the figure moved slowly towards him with a smile and opened his arms in a friendly welcome. Immediately he noticed the clear marks of the pierced palms. He wanted to stand up and say something but he couldn’t. Then, the words fell on his ears in a sweet and comforting voice which subdued all the noise around, “Would you like to come with me? Or would you rather stay here?”
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