Barbara Jagger was a long-time resident of Bright Falls. She died on July 10, 1970, at 25 years old. It was said she drowned in Cauldron Lake. Since her death, her body was used by the Dark Presence as a vessel to entice Thomas Zane.
Barbara had no immediate family in the area, but survived with her lover, Thomas Zane. Jagger was a renowned beauty and the three-time winner of the Miss Deerfest pageant. "She was such a pretty girl", said Joy Miller, a friend and classmate since elementary school. "But she never used it to her advantage. She was humble and kind to everyone". Part of the mystery of her death is that she was a very capable swimmer. There was no evidence of foul play, however and no investigation of the death was planned by local law enforcement. Friends in Bright Falls remember Jagger as a warm, maternal presence, though she was a relatively young woman and never had children of her own. Her home-baked muffins at community events were famous. "She didn't have bake sales, she had bake giveaways", one friend noted. "Her generosity was amazing. She just warmed everyone around her. Wherever Barbara was, you felt at home."
Little is known about this mysterious character in the Alan Wake franchise but it is known that she has a very strong relationship with Thomas Zane because it is mentioned throughout the game. It is said in July 1970 she was diving into Cauldron Lake with Zane when she apparently drowned. That was when the Dark Presence consumed her and she became old and disfigured and known as a local legend. When the Dark Presence offered Zane a chance to bring her back he took it after Hartman convinced him. After the story was completed Zane realized he had sent the Dark Presence into the world enveloping it and devouring the world. Realizing what he had done he wrote everything he created out of the story and made it right including his love Jagger. Then that resulted in the earthquake that destroyed Bird Leg Cabin and Zane himself. Now it is 2010 and Jagger has returned using Wake as her pawn in a much bigger game but Wake suffers the same fate as Zane but he is not dead only proclaiming that the lake is "not a lake, its an ocean" Then again vanquishing the Dark Presence from the world and freeing Alice Wake.
"The Poet and the Muse", is a song based on the events on how Barbara died and how she was brought back. Following the song, it tells of how Thomas Zane and Barbara Jagger were a perfect couple and lived very happily. Tom told Barbara about a treasure at the bottom of the lake. She became curious and went to try and find it, but accidentally drowned. Tom went into the lake with a diver's suit (hence the way he looks) to try and find her, but could not. He returned to the surface before night fell. Emil Hartman must have known the power of the lake, as he tried to convince Tom to write her back through poems. He did so one night and as he slept during the same night, Barbara came back, but she was not herself as she was possessed by the Dark Presence, using her corpse as a vessel onto the surface world. Overjoyed at the return of his love, he took her in, however soon realized his mistake. Tom tried to kill her. He tied her to a chair and cut out her heart but she did not die. He decided he would return her to the bottom of the lake, killing himself in the process, so they could both be together. In the end, Thomas died and the Dark Presence was kept at bay until Alan Wake arrived at Bright Falls.
Alan Wake (Season 1)
Barbara Jagger is seen various times throughout the game, tormenting the townsfolk and rallying the darkness to overtake Bright Falls. She has armies of Taken prowling the woods at night and sends flocks of them in an attempt to stop Wake from reaching his goal. Alan Wake, Cynthia Weaver and Thomas Zane fight against her and the Dark Presence. As the events of the game progress, she "touches" Rose Marigold, sending the waitress into a catatonic state of madness. It is revealed around the ending she was the one who tricked a distraught Wake to write her a story in which she takes over the town. Jagger told Wake that if he wrote her this story, he would get his lost Alice Wake back. Wake complied, but before he could write the ending, he realized she was lying and wrote Thomas Zane in the story to save him from her.
Jagger, infuriated that she's been defeated, tells Wake that the Darkness will just "find another face to wear". Wake, armed with the Clicker, charges at her and thrusts his arm into the hole in her heart and activates the Clicker. Light shines out of Jagger's eyes and mouth and she evaporates into nothingness.
This House of Dreams
The Alan Wake 2 ARG blog "This House of Dreams" offered deeper insight into the fates of both Jagger and Zane. In the final blog entry, Zane explains to Samantha in a dream that after Barbara's possession by the Dark Presence, he wrote both of them out of existence, and the respective Dark and Light Presences took control of their bodies as avatars. Zane then tells that he wrote into existence a "baby universe" in the Dark Place where the spirits or souls of himself and Jagger lived on peacefully, while the Presences surged to the surface to continue their timeless war, using Thomas and Barbara as their faces in the real world.
This would also explain why, in The Writer, Zane was unable to explain to Alan the page "he" wrote about Alan's childhood which was left in the shoe box in the Well-Lit Room; the Zane that Alan spoke to was the Light Presence, while the real Thomas Zane lived on with the real Barbara Jagger in his new universe.
Alan Wake: Jagger makes many appearances to Wake during the game. She appears in Alan's mind at random moments in the game and gives him hallucinations and minor migraines.
Rose Marigold: The only time Jagger appears to Rose is when she takes over her mind to order her to invite Wake over to drug him and take his weapons and pages Wake then later escapes the trailer leaving a scared and confused Rose behind.
Cynthia Weaver: Back in the 70's Weaver had a deep love for Zane and she knew that Jagger had already been dating him for sometime know so she needed a way to get to him but it failed and Jagger and Zane had died in the process of planning.
Alice Wake: Jagger appears to Alice Wake only once kidnapping her and imprisoning her in the dark depths of Cauldron Lake only to be set free to a lonely deserted shoreline
- What really happened with her after the Dark Presence possessed her body?
- What happened to Thomas Zane after Alan uses the clicker to release Barbara from the darkness?
- Her age would have been 68 if she was still alive, but this is the age the Dark Presence portrays her.
- The name Barbara Jagger is a reference to the old Russian folk legend of a witch called Baba Yaga, who in the legends lived in a hut that stood upon chicken legs. This latter part is also referenced, as Barbara Jagger and Thomas Zane's cabin, where the Wakes were set to stay, is called Bird Leg Cabin. The Anderson Brothers also make reference to this in Episode 4, when you talk to them in the Cauldron Lake Lodge.
- In Episode 6, when you must locate the clicker in the dream scape of your house, you can hear Barbara Jagger's voice as she calls out Thomas Zane.
- She is referred to as "The Scratching Hag" and "Granny Claws" due to the myths around her.
- In the Alan Wake novel, it is said that underneath the veil, her face is really just a skull.