New York, Three years ago.
Alan enters his apartment and hears Alice call out to him, she’s done some cover shots for his next novel that she wants him to check out, but when he gets to his office the lights go out. She begins to panic, so Alan checks the fuse box, but it seems its a proper power outage so he grabs a flashlight and heads to her office to calm her down, now in the lounge, he tells her a story about how he was scared of the dark as a kid and his Mum helped him get over it by giving him a clicker, which he presents to Alice, she then basically accuses him of taking the piss, but they both laugh it off.
Back in the present day, a Doctor examines Alan and deems him to not have a concussion, the Sheriff wishes to talk to him too, so Alan heads there but acts cagey to her questioning. Their conversation is cut short by Alan getting a phone call, the man on the other end claims to have Alice and tells Alan he has proof, Alan just has to look at the old Junker in the yard outside the Police Station. The kidnapper tells him to meet him in Elderwood National Park at a spot called Lover’s Peak at midnight.
On his way through the cells to the yard, Alan speaks to a drunk that’s been brought in for getting in a fight. He seems scared that its dark, a recurring theme: First Alice, then the odd woman in the diner (who’s also checking the light switches in the Police Station now) and now this drunk, and asks Alan to switch the lights on. He starts rambling about “needing” it to be bright. Outside Alan finds the junker, Alice’s driver’s license is on the front passenger seat. His phone rings, but it’s not the kidnapper, it’s his agent, Barry, he’s been trying to get hold of both Alan and Alice all week and this is the first time either has answered (the battery life on Alan’s phone is excellent I might add, a whole week without a charge? anyway…), he’s arrived in Bright Falls, so Alan tells him to come to collect him from the Police Station.
At the reception desk, another man has come in, he’s here to see the drunk, though he also introduces himself as the local psychiatrist and offers Alan somewhere to sleep at his lodge, Alan remembers this is the man Alice wanted him to see and things begin to get hostile, Alan has quite the temper. Thankfully Barry arrives and threatens to get lawyers involved if the locals don’t leave Alan alone. The pair then make for a different lodge whilst Alan fills Barry in on what’s happening, though Barry thinks Alan is going insane, he agrees to help him find Alice, though he also thinks they should get the Police involved. At the cabin, they meet Rusty, who gives them the keys.
As midnight approaches, Alan and Barry plot what to do. Barry still thinks Alan should involve the authorities, maybe even the FBI, but Alan genuinely believes the kidnapper will kill Alice if he does. He tells Barry that he’ll go alone, but that if he’s not back by morning, then to alert the Sheriff, Alan leaves the cabin and heads for Lover’s Peak. En route there’s a variety of other cabins that he checks, one of which has a TV that he switches on, it plays another episode of Night Springs, in which a man is being interrogated for beating another to death, leaving the victim so badly assaulted that no one can identify him by his facial features. The victim and the suspect happen to be wearing the same clothes though and as the detective is going through what evidence they do have, they discover both have the same fingerprints, when the cop states he’s confused, the suspect tells him he’ll be going to jail anyway, but that the cop will see him again “maybe in the mirror”. then the episode ends.
As Alan passes a sign for the visitors centre, he has a vision of Alice screaming, there’s the image of a typewriter too. In the distance he hears gunshots and Rusty screaming, so he rushes in the direction of the noise and finds a trail of blood leading to a barely conscious Randy propped up against the wall of the Visitors Centre, he’s muttering that “it happened just like it did on the page” and asks Alan to turn on the lights in the Rangers Office. Following his instructions, that’s where Alan heads, but the fuse box won’t be operable, it has an axe planted in it. A load of banging noises and more screams from Randy come from the direction of the Visitors Centre, Alan rushes there but is attacked by Taken, there’s an oily substance on the floor too, shining the torch on it makes it smoke and ultimately dissipate. Once he eventually gets back inside the Visitors Centre Randy has vanished and one of the walls has a huge hole in it that wasn’t there before. Alan heads through it and into the woods beyond.
His phone rings, its Barry again, he’s panicking, sounds like some stuff has begun to happen back at the Cabin and he now believes what Alan was telling him, Alan tells him to stay put, lock the door and switch the lights on. Then continues making his way to Lover’s Peak, seeing off waves of Taken as he progresses further through the trail.
He finds a cable car that takes him across a gorge but is attacked by a large number of Taken as he gets to the other side. A man comes to his rescue and once they escape the Taken Alan realises he’s dropped his gun. The man will only give him flares to see any more Taken off, even when he begins removing the planks at the entrance to a wooden staircase, he just outright refuses to give Alan a gun. He wonders if he’s the kidnapper and his suspicions are proved to be true once they reach Lover’s Peak, where they are again attacked by Taken, and again, Alan can only throw down flares whilst the man shoots at them (he’s an awful shot too, I might add). However, there’s no sign of Alice and so Alan asks where his wife is.
“I knew you were gonna say that. I read it all before. you’re a hell of a writer. Congratulations. you’re gonna bring about something glorious and terrible once you get some… proper editorial control.
I want the entire manuscript… Or she’s gonna suffer bad”
Alan punches him, sending them through the safety barrier. They fall, the man drops his gun, Alan gets to it first, so the kidnapper flees. There’s nothing else Alan can do, he hasn’t finished the manuscript (hasn’t even started writing it, technically speaking), so he decides to head back to the Cabin to help Barry. He eventually finds his way to a car park, there’s a pickup truck there with its lights on, though it’s locked up behind a gate. He finds the keys and gets in the car after receiving a call from Barry, the cabin is being attacked by swarms of crows. the pick-up allows him to get most of the way back fairly quickly, although there’s a short section he has to take on foot, and sure enough, as he approaches the cabin he’s attacked by what must be hundreds of crows, in a few different swarms, the only tools that are any use are his torch and the flares the kidnapper gave him, eventually he fights them off and tells Barry its safe.
The next morning he sends Barry to town to ask about the kidnapper whilst he attempts to write the rest of his manuscript, though his writers’ block is still an issue. Rose (the young girl from the Diner) rings Barry, she tells him she has the info he’s looking for, however, it’s not really Rose, its the veiled-lady.