"Damn, Dean, you gotta cut down on those peanut M&Ms," Sam muttered, trying to balance both his brother and the duffel bag as he walked.
He'd made it about fifteen paces when he heard a Fooger screeching. "Crap." Sam eased Dean down to the ground, adjusted the duffel, and pulled Dean up and over his shoulder into a fireman's carry. He did his best to ignore the painful moan Dean released as his wounds were grabbed and stretched. Grunting as he stood, Sam's Glock once again became an extension of his hand as he held it out in front of him, turning a quick circle to check for the Fooger.
"If I have to see one of these things in daylight, Dean, you're so not gonna hear the end of it," Sam threatened his unconscious brother as he picked up his step and headed down the trail.
Luckily for Sam, no more Foogers appeared, let alone screeched anymore. He took it as the beast's parting warning to the brothers. Twenty minutes after they left the clearing, Sam caught sight of the Impala and sighed in relief.
He eased Dean down onto the ground and dropped the duffel bag next to him. Grabbing the keys, he opened the passenger side door, reached in and unlocked the rear door and opened it up.
Putting a hand to Dean's cheek, Sam tried to rouse his brother. "Dean? Hey, Dean, you with me?"
Seeing Dean in the daylight, Sam cringed. His brother looked horribly pale –or at least what parts weren't covered in blood, dirt or Fooger slime. He wiped gobs of it off Dean's neck and chest and flicked them onto the ground, away from them. He quickly checked the bandages on Dean's leg and shoulder – retying the one on his leg – before manhandling him into the back seat of the car.
After locking all their weapons in the trunk, Sam unlocked the driver's door and got in. He started the car and flipped on his cell phone at the same time and cursed at the continued lack of cell service. "You're in the frickin' mountains, in the middle of nowhere, of course there's no service," he swore, dropping the phone back into his jacket pocket.
Not knowing where the nearest hospital was, he did the next best thing – he drove to the sheriff's office. If Dean were anywhere near coherent, he'd have just brought him back to the motel they'd been staying at. But the speed in which the infection spread, when added to the blood loss and dehydration, were all working against Dean and he needed more care than Sam could provide.
It was a fifteen-minute drive – about ten miles from where they'd entered, and left, the forest – to the Sheriff's office. Sam left the car running with the heat blasting as he ran inside the office.
"I need some help!" he called, getting the desk officer's attention. "My brother's hurt. I need to find the nearest hospital."
The deputy at the desk took a quick look at Sam – seeing his blood, mud and slime covered clothing – and asked, "Your brother look worse off than you?"
"He was attacked by a wolf or something, in the woods. He's lost a lot of blood," Sam replied. "Please."
"Nearest hospital is sixty five miles away. But there's a clinic in town – we can wake up Doctor Honnick."
"Where? I'll drive there now," Sam quickly agreed, impatient with the deputy, even though she was doing and saying all the right things.
"Down two blocks on the right – Silver Street – you can't miss it," she told Sam, pointing in the direction of the clinic.
Sam was out the door before she finished. He took a quick look at Dean, making sure he was as he left him, and headed toward the clinic. Shortly after Sam parked the Impala, the same deputy pulled up next to him in a patrol car. She rifled through a set of keys she'd taken off her duty belt, picked out one and unlocked the clinic's front door.
"Doctor Honnick says to bring your brother into the first room on the right. She'll be here in about ten minutes," she told Sam. Then she stood back and held the door as Sam carried Dean into the building and toward the aforementioned treatment room. When she got a good look at Dean after Sam laid him on the exam table, she couldn't help but remark, "Damn! What the hell did you say he got attacked by?"
"I don't know for sure, it happened so quick," Sam lied. "I know there're bear, wolf and mountain lions up here, but we honestly don't know. We were just out hiking."
Sam looked around the room and found some sterile water, alcohol and gauze dressings and began cleaning Dean up some more. The deputy wanted to say something to Sam, about waiting for the doctor or not touching her supplies, but Sam seemed to know what he was doing and Dean seemed to need the treatment as soon as possible.
When Sam began cutting away the rest of Dean's clothing, the deputy excused herself, saying, "I'll go meet Doctor Honnick." If Sam heard her he didn't acknowledge the fact.
About ten minutes later, an older woman with a long, gray ponytail rushed into the room, the braid swooshing around her. "What've we got?" she asked as she pulled some latex gloves out of a box on the counter next to the door.
"Animal attack," Sam replied. "Deep gashes on his thigh and shoulder. The leg's already infected."
Doctor Honnick approached the exam bed and took a quick look at her patient. She nodded her head, turned to the deputy and said, "Okay, Bonnie, we got this covered. I'll call you if we need anything else," summarily dismissing the woman.
"Cool. Thanks for coming in so quick, Doc," she replied and left the office.
The doctor returned her attention to Dean and put the back of her hand to his forehead. She nodded her head and then looked at the wound on Dean's thigh, that Sam had just unwrapped. She gently probed the deep gash, eliciting a slight moan and some movement from Dean.
"Let's see the shoulder, now," she instructed, and helped Sam roll Dean onto his side. She pulled the bandage off that wound and winced at the sight of it. "Damn," she whispered. "Okay, young man," she said, looking at Sam, her eyes asking his name.
"Sam," he supplied. "And this is my brother, Dean."
"Okay, Sam," she began again. "You finish cleaning him up. Get as much of that mud and green shit off him as you can. I'll be right back. Gonna get some antibiotics."
Sam looked up at her and met her gaze. The fact that she didn't even ask what that "green shit" was, that maybe she'd seen it before, came through loud and clear. Sam nodded his head and continued cleaning off the mud, blood and slime.
When Doctor Honnick returned a few minutes later, she had several IV bags in her hands. "Couple rounds of this and he'll be right as rain, as far as the infection goes. Then we can stitch him up."
"You've seen this before?" Sam asked.
"Not in a while, but yeah," she replied, cleaning off the backs of Dean's hands, prepping them for the IVs. "Heard about them cattle kills. Had hoped no one would be stupid enough to go after the varmints this time."
"Would it help to know we gave more than we got?" Sam asked in return.
"I'll let you know when we kill this infection in your brother," she replied, starting one IV.
Several hours later had Dean waking up in a strange bed. The last thing he'd remembered was being in the dark woods talking to Sam about a statue made of butter. He moved his head to the side, groaning as a headache made itself known.
"Glad you're awake, man."
"Where the hell are we?"
Dean moved to sit up, to get a better look at his surroundings, but found himself being pushed back down onto the pillow by his brother's hands, as well as the overall ache his body currently was.
"The clinic in town," Sam answered, then, added, "It's around noon," in anticipation of Dean's next question.
Dean closed his eyes and willed the room to stop spinning. When he opened them next, a woman in her sixties, with the longest braid he'd ever seen, was standing next to his bed and sticking a thermometer into his ear.
"I'm Doctor Honnick," she said in greeting. When the thermometer beeped, she pulled it away and looked at the reading. "Down to ninety-nine. Gotta love modern medicine, huh, boys?"
She proceeded to check the wound on Dean's leg, causing Dean to squirm.
"Hey, Doc, at least buy me a drink, first," he joked.
The doctor laughed and winked at him, causing Sam to roll his eyes at their antics.
She injected some pain medicine into one of Dean's IVs and pronounced, "You'll be good as new in no time, Dean," and added, "Just stay away from those damn Dacks," before leaving the room.
"Dacks?" Dean questioned.
"Local speak for Foogers," Sam told him. "Doctor Honnick told me all about them. They've been around the Adirondacks for years. The people that have lived here for a while know not to mess with them. They only come out when they're desperate for food or when someone attacks them first. Those farmers just moved up here this season; hadn't gotten the message yet."
"So, what about the cops?"
"New sheriff in town. Fired all the old deputies, brought in new ones."
Dean nodded his head as he tried to stop a yawn.
"Go to sleep, Dean," Sam told him, a contagious yawn catching him as well. "It was a long night. We could both use some shut eye."
Dean nodded again and closed his eyes, whispering, "Thanks, Sammy."
A/N: Thanks to November's Guest for beta reading this. And for the Peanut M&Ms! I did not intend this Long Night to become the longest time writing a story. You'd think I'd have more than 16 pages after all this time… Oh well. Thanks to all who have hung in this long and reviewed.