Jenna awoke with a jump.
She lay on her bed, still slightly drunk from the night out with her colleagues having celebrated her friends promotion in the city. For some reason, her heart was beating a bit more rapidly than normal. Maybe, she thought, that she had a nightmare that snapped her from her slumber. Or maybe even someone had slammed a door somewhere down the corridor. The joys of living in an apartment building on a Friday night in the city, it was hard to get a moments peace.
The apartment. Her apartment. She was confused, how the hell did she even get back here? She lived on the 24th floor of this high-towering sky-scraper and she was positive she was far too drunk to make it here herself. She lazily wafted her arm around the bed, but she was definitely alone.
She slowly parted one of her eyelids and glanced at her clock on her bedside table, struggling to focus on the illuminated display.
The the dim LED numbers glared at her in the dark.
"Ugh..." she groaned. The 27 year old woman stretched in her bed and sighed. She could feel the hangover creeping on her already, her head lightly throbbing and her mouth dry, her throat coarse. She hated smoking and she instantly regretted her social smoking, as per usual whenever it was the day after having a night out. Even though the thought of getting out of bed right now was painful but the on-coming storm of a horrible hangover loomed and so Jenna forced herself to stagger from her bed.
As she stood on her hardwood floor, her long oak-brown hair cascaded down her naked back. As she took her first step, she stumbled slightly and just managed to keep her balance. With her next step, Jenna pointed herself in the direction of her en-suite bathroom and walked slowly to the door. It was a pain having such a large bedroom at this state, she just wanted a glass of water in an instant but instead it felt like an Earth-age to get there. But before she knew it, her hand gripped the handle and swung the door open and pulled on the light chord and suddenly she was blinded.
Jenna groaned again from the bright light, squinting and almost blindedly reached for the cabinet above the sink and pulled out her pain killers and a small glass. Shutting the cabinet door, she looked at her face reflecting back at her in the small bathroom. She looked a state, but she was still beautiful nevertheless.
Filling her glass of cold water, she popped a couple of tablets into her mouth and took a swig from her glass and swallowed. Jenna accepted that this wasn't going to be her first tablets for the day and it was a good thing she wasn't working later. She yawned and filled her glass again.
As she turned off her tap, a sharp rumble of thunder in the distance made her jump and theatened her already-throbbing head.
"Great," she muttered to herself. "Just what I need."
The light flickered but Jenna hardly noticed as she pulled on the chord and closed the door, walking back to her bed with the glass of water in hand.
Another rumble, but sounding closer this time.
"Oh go away for fuc-" before Jenna could finish her sentance, an impossible blinding light shone through her big black curtains, which were thick for good reason, and her whole apartment basked for only a moment in this light before fading to darkness. A shattering boom near blew open her head, making her ears shriek with pain and it shook her whole world with Jenna falling face forward with a scream and dropping her glass that smashed as it hit the floor.
"Holy shit! What the fuck was that?!" For a moment, she thought that maybe it had been an earthquake, but she knew full well that earthquake don't produce a bright light and a boom like the one that had nearly sent her completely deaf.
And then there was nothing. Nothing but rain beginning to patter against her windows.
She was shaking in the dark, paralysed on the floor in shock and slight fear. Jenna waited for another rumble from the storm, but nothing came. Nothing but...
"What... What is happening out there?" she thought. She could just hear what she thought like screaming. And car alarms whailing and even horns beeping way below on the city streets. And then there was more commotion, more panicking noises.
She slowly forced herself onto her feet and treaded carefully to her wall-to-wall window, and slowly, she pulled the curtain away. There was nothing there but the city that could be seen from her living space, the countless lights twinkling in the dark night sky, the rain on the window giving it a look of water-painted beauty. Curiously, she opened the curtain more so that she could look down the city on her left and all seemed fine. But what she couldn't really see was that far below, people were running in panic in the direction she was looking.
She frowned, confused as she could still hear the panic below, but as she turned her head to the right and looked at what finally was causing the commotion, her heart was in her throat and she was turning white very quickly, feeling her legs begin to shake...
"No, no it... Can't be...!"
Jenna backed away from her window and in an instant she slammed them shut again. Her heartbeat was booming in her ears now, her throat felt like it was swelling and her breathing became erratic from the shear shock that had just washed over her in an instant from the sight of the...
"How is this possible...?! It.." But no matter how much Jenna tried to re-assure herself, there was no way that she oculd lie to herself of such an impossible truth.
She stood frozen on the spot for moments longer than she knew, balancing herself on the balls of her feet. But if she could see it, and everyone else could see it then surely...
She snapped from her funk and dashed to her TV that was mounted to the wall and quickly turned it on. In the few seconds that it took for the screen to come on, more panic could be heard not only from the city below, but from the rest of the occupants in her building. She could hear her neighbours beginning to scream and run wild along the corridors just outside her own door.
When the screen flicked on, nothing but black and white noise was brightly shining at her. She picked up her remote and tried to flick through the channels, looking for some kind of news but none came. Nothing, but signal noise. In panic, she dashed for her phone on her bedside table, but she quickly found that there was no signal, no way of communicating to and from the outside.
She sat frozen, staring at the animated pond water animated wallpaper on her phone, wondering what to do. What could she do? What could anybody do? She glanced back to her clock that had caught her eye in the light from the TV and quickly fiddled with the knobs and switched the radio on.
A distorted woman's voice that sounded that it had been recorded in the fifties quietly spoke through the mono speaker. "...gency transmission. This is an emergency transmission. This is an-"
"OH FOR FUCKS SAKE!" She screamed at the radio, slowly beginning to weep in sheer fear and panic like nothing she had ever felt before. Holding her hands on her lap, she listened to the repeated message over and over again hoping that another voice would interrupt the woman's recording but after a few minutes, the message was still repeating in the gloom.
This had given time for Jenna to think about what she had seen. Was she going crazy? Had someone drugged her? But it couldn't be drugs, surely, that could make such a vivid reality around her so extreme.
How could something be so gigatnic, how could it be physically possible? As she pondered and pondered, sobbing as she did, she came to wonder why...
Why hadn't it moved yet? Surely she would have felt it, seen it move...
Was she even sure she saw what she saw? Jenna's eyes locked onto the curtains that she had hastily closed. She wanted another look, another reason to doubt her sanity.
Slowly getting back to her feet, she made her way to the window with the laminated floor creaking under her feet. Gripping onto the curtain again, she breathed heavily and slowly with her heart still racing in her throat. She closed her eyes and opened the curtains, and hesitated.
Turning her head, Jenna opened them again and saw what she hoped wasn't still there, lingering in the darkness. She pressed her naked body to the cold glass, pushing the side of her face to see if she could get a better look from her window. This was probably the only time that she damned the fact that her windows didn't open. But still, she did indeed get a better look.
Jenna awoke with a jump.