This is the last chapter. Like I always say, I suck at endings so I hope no one is too disappointed. Also I'd like to thank everyone for the reviews throughout the story. I really appreciated them, thanks.
Dean gathered firewood from the storage area then took it outside and made a large circle with it in the snow. He then took several bottles of lighter fluid and poured them over the firewood letting it soak into each log. Now all he had to do was lure the creature into the circle, light the logs, and shoot it in the heart. When he was finished he came in and sat next to Sam.
"Well that should do it. I have a bunch of roasts defrosting and as soon as they do I'll take them out back and toss the blood around."
"What if it doesn't come? What if we leave tomorrow and that thing is still out there?"
"That thing is dying tonight Sam; I'm going to make sure of it."
"But what if it doesn't show up?"
"Then we'll keep coming back until we do get it."
"You know things can go wrong Dean…you be careful out there."
"Hey don't worry Sammy; I'll be back in time to tuck you in for the night."
"That's not funny Dean. I should be out there with you."
"You just stay in here and rest your leg." Dean ordered. "You don't want that infection to come back. Just stay right here by the fire and keep your leg elevated and dry. I can handle this."
"I don't like it Dean, you're hurt too. Why don't we wait till we're both one hundred percent and then go after it? We can always come back next week; I can back you up then."
"Sam we got to get rid of this thing tonight before it kills again." Dean stood up. "Look, I got to go get ready." He gave Sam a reassuring smile when he saw the worried look on his face. "Sam, I'll be back before you know it."
Sam waited till Dean left then got up and hopped into the back room to watch even though he knew there was little he could do if Dean ran into trouble. He watched as Dean poured the blood from the roasts over the ground inside the circle then threw down the roasts. Dean then sat on a chair in the middle of the circle, pulled a blanket around himself, and waited with his gun on his lap.
Four hours later
Nothing had happened in over four hours and Sam found it impossible to keep his eyes open. He had been fighting sleep for over two hours and finally succumbed to it. When he finally woke up he was horrified by what he saw. Dean too had fallen asleep in the chair, his head hanging down on his chest. Sam knew Dean had been exhausted from pulling him down the mountain and was mad at himself for not insisting that he wait till he had a little rest before attempting to kill the thing. Now Dean sat helpless as the creature stood next to him blood dripping from its mouth from the roast he had picked up and consumed. Sam thought about pounding on the window but was scared Dean would wake up suddenly and startle the thing which would then turn on him. So he hopped back into the lounge and grabbed a poker from the fireplace then hurried back and went outside using it as a crutch. He slowly approached the creature hoping to draw its attention away from his brother long enough for Dean to light the fire and shoot it. The creature saw him and growled slightly as it started walking slowly toward him. Sam decided he would wait till the creature was far enough away from his brother before attempting to wake Dean but Dean had heard the low growl and jumped out of his chair. Seeing what was happening he pulled out the lighter but the creature spun around and knocked it out of his hand before he could use it. Beyond the circle Dean could see Sam standing on one foot using the poker as a crutch.
"Damn it Sammy get back inside!" Dean knew if he didn't get the logs lit he was probably going to die and he didn't want his brother to watch.
Instead of going inside Sam began to swing the poker in the air trying to attract the creature
"Hey you big ugly son of a bitch come over here!" Sam shouted trying to draw the creature's attention away from his brother. The creature glanced back at Sam but kept advancing on Dean and with one swipe of its paw knocked him to the ground. He quickly rolled away from it before it could step on him. But before he could stand up the thing stood over him and began to reach for him.
Sam not knowing what else to do used the end of the poker to slice open his wounded leg hoping the smell of the fresh blood would cause the creature to turn on him giving Dean time to find the lighter. It worked; the creature turned from Dean and began slowly walking toward Sam as it sniffed the fresh blood in the air.
"Sam get out of here!" Dean shouted as he looked for the lighter. "Damn it, where the hell is it!"
Sam's eyes widened as the thing got closer.
"Anytime soon would be okay Dean." He said as he hopped backward. "Hurry Dean…hurry …" He kept repeating, he knew if Dean didn't find the lighter soon the creature would be on him and there was nothing he could do.
"Sam go, get out of here!"
Sam knew even if he wanted to run he couldn't, not with his bad leg. He raised the poker defensively over his head as he fell backward into the snow. The creature now stood directly over him, drool dripping from its fangs onto his chest.
Dean dug frantically through the deep snow he knew Sam was going to die if he didn't find the lighter. He fired the gun into the air in an attempt to distract the thing. It glanced back at him but didn't back off. He fired once more and the creature turned back toward him. Dean let out the breath he didn't realize he was holding when his hand closed in around the lighter. He picked it up, lit it, and held it to one of the logs. Nothing happened. He looked over his shoulder and could see the thing coming up behind him. Finally the log lit and the fire immediately spread to the other logs. He now had the creature exactly where he wanted it, surrounded by flames. But before he could turn to fire the gun the creature grabbed him and tossed him across the circle causing the gun to fly from his hand. It was on him in a second and all Dean could do was throw his arms up over his head defensively as the thing reached down towards him. It was just about to grab him when a single gunshot rang out. The creature turned slightly as another gun shot rang out and began walking toward Sam who had crawled through the flames and now knelt just inside the circle. Sam focused on its heart and pulled the trigger one more time. This time the creature stopped in its tracks, an ever growing patch of blood staining its chest. The creature roared in pain and rage as it staggered toward Sam then collapsed on top of him.
"Sam!" Dean screamed as he ran over and tried unsuccessfully to pull his brother out from under the thing. He could see Sam gasping for air as the weight of the thing began crushing him and stopping him from getting a decent breath. "Sammy!" Dean grabbed Sam's arm which was sticking out from underneath the massive creature and pulled as hard as he could but couldn't budge him. Sam's eyes were just beginning to roll back in his head when the creature's body began to dissolve and appeared to melt back into the snow. Soon there was nothing left, as if the thing never existed. Dean grabbed Sam and pulled him into his arms.
"Sammy you okay?"
"I'm fine." Dean reached down and touched Sam's bleeding leg. "Damn it Sammy. We got to get you inside and cleaned up." Dean said as he stood up then pulled his brother up and put Sam's arm over his shoulder and helped him back to the lodge.
Dean cleaned Sam's leg and smothered the wound in antibiotic cream which he found in the lodge's health center. He then wrapped it tightly with gauze. Then he settled in a chair next to Sam and they both soon fell into an exhausted sleep.
"You guys okay?" A voice woke them both from their sleep. A man in an orange rescue uniform stood over them.
Dean looked over at Sam who smiled at him and nodded.
"Yeah, we're both fine." Dean was relieved to see that Sam looked fine with no evidence of another fever starting.
"You hurt bad?" The man asked Sam when he noticed his gauze covered ankle.
"No I'm fine; my brother took care of it."
"What happened? Hurt it skiing?"
"No, actually I stepped in a bear trap up on the mountain."
"Oh so that's what held you guys up. They thought maybe you wandered off the trail and got lost."
"No, nothing as exciting as that." Dean grinned over at Sam who smiled back.
"Well then let's get you guys out of here." The man began reaching for Sam to help him up but Dean stopped him.
"I'll get him." Dean knew he and Sam had been through a lot the last few days and wasn't about to turn his brother over to anyone else, he wanted to see this through till the end. He helped Sam up then once more put his brother's arm around his neck as he helped him to the helicopter.
Sam looked up at the mountain.
"I wonder if that creature was the only one out there." He said softly to Dean as he climbed into the helicopter.
"Let's hope so." Dean took one last glance at the mountain before climbing in next to Sam. He wasn't too keen on flying but he wasn't about to leave his brother's side. But he knew as well as Sam knew that if there was one, more then likely there were more out there, hopefully living deeper in the woods far from any humans. As far as Taylor was concerned, they decided to keep their mouths shut about him not wanting to get involved in a police investigation. Besides the creature was gone and they had no proof he ever even existed. They felt bad for the families because they would never know what really happened to their family member but maybe it was better that way. At least they wouldn't have to live with the knowledge that their son or daughter had been used as bait for a sick man's get rich scheme. They both looked down at the mountain as they flew overhead. The only sign that something strange had happened there was the circle of burnt logs behind the lodge, other then that the mountain once more looked peaceful and inviting.