The inside of the weather station is as derelict as the outside and John has to step over scientific paraphernalia lying on the dusty floor. He catalogues every piece of discarded graph paper, compass, pencil and metal ruler as he steps confidently forward, wondering how he could use these items to help him and Sam get out of here.
But the opportunity doesn't arise. As soon as they're through the first door, Watts slides his arm up around Sam's neck and clears his throat dramatically.
"Take a seat, John," he invites, nodding towards a rickety wooden chair sitting by the wall. "It's stronger than it looks."
John hesitates, looking from the chair, to Watts, to Sam and back to Watts again. Who recognises the hesitation for what it is.
"Delaying won't help," he reassures the hunter, and to drive his point home, he tightens his hold on Sam. "I've got your boy here and I can snap his neck as soon as look at him. I'm going to get the other one too." He tilts his head and raises his eyebrows. "Clock's a'ticking John," he smiles.
John scowls, eyes darkening with hatred and Sam's a little scared by it, but he sits in the chair, wound in his shoulder gently weeping blood and his fingers numb with the exertion of holding on to his gun. He grabs the chair and scrapes it towards him. He makes a great showing of sitting heavily in it, glaring at Watts, eyes softening with reassurance when they flicker over to Sam.
Watts lets his hold on Sam slacken slightly and Sam wonders if he's fast enough, strong enough, to pull free but then he catches his father's eye and John shakes his head so subtly Sam isn't sure it even happened. So instead he watches John shift uncomfortably in the chair, trying not to look at the sluggish trail of blood soaking through his father's jacket.
Watts must be watching too because he suddenly releases Sam and is across the room to where John is beginning to sweat – not from fear but from where the knife is still protruding angrily from his shoulder. Watts bends over him and rests his hand on the hilt of the weapon and Sam knows he should be using this opportunity to get away, make a run for it, but all he can do is watch, fascinated and terrified in equal measures.
"This must hurt, John," Watts comments, casually. "You'd be more comfortable if you dropped your gun."
John grunts as the added pressure on the knife sends shooting pains through his arm and although he really, really doesn't want to relinquish his hold on their only hope, he can't help but let the gun slip through his fingers, landing with an ominous thud on the floor.
Sam watches Watts give a satisfied little nod as he kicks the gun to the side of the room. He knows he really should be doing something right now. His father's trying to glare at their captor who has moved behind him, casually securing John's wrists with plastic ties. Sam feels forgotten and a little voice in the back of his head is telling him this is his chance, probably his only one, to run, to get the hell out of there but he's part of a family which doesn't abandon anyone.
Watts lifts his head up and casts a sideways look at the boy, smiling in a way that Sam's not totally comfortable with.
"How you doing there, Sammy?" he smirks. "Looking a bit twitchy, son. Maybe you should sit down too." He waves to another, equally rickety chair opposite his father.
Sam hesitates, looking from Watts to his father, unsure whether to do what he's told or seek an alternative option from John. John nods once and as Sam turns to the chair, he hears Watts laughing.
"You've trained him well, John. Have you done as good a job with the other one though? That's what I want to know." He straightens up and reaches into his pocket, pulling out a cell phone. "Let's give him a call, shall we? After all, it's not really a party till we're all here." He flips the phone open and Sam watches, fascinated, as his fingers fly across the number pad. Part of him wants to know how Watts knows his brother's number but mostly he just wants Dean not to pick up.
He's not prepared when Watts thrusts the phone at him. He really doesn't want to talk to Dean because he knows that whatever he says, Dean will know, Dean will come regardless. Watts, he thinks, is clever. He obviously realises that Dean would go through hell and high water to protect his family.
Watts raises his eyebrows and pushes the phone closer to Sam's face. "Talk to your brother, Sam," he orders. "Get him up here. He needs to be here."
Sam shakes his head. "No," he says, proud that he's managed to keep the tremble out of his voice. "You want him, you speak to him."
Watts laughs and turns briefly to John. "Not quite the pushover after all, is he?" and Sam wonders what his father has been saying about him. He doesn't have long to think about it though as Watts turns back to him, all humour and good nature gone. "This isn't a request," he growls, "and you don't have a choice. I will get your brother here, one way or another, and trust me, this is going to go much better if you talk to him. For his sake."
Sam throws a frantic look at his father but there's no reassurance to be had there. John looks as sick at the idea as Sam feels.
"Dad?" he asks, voice as small as he feels right now. "What do I do?"
"Talk to your brother, Sam. He'll know what to do." John hesitates, looks at Watts and takes a breath. "Tell Dean what he," and he nods at Watts, "tells you to."
Watts grins and Sam reluctantly takes the phone out of his hand. He glares at Watts and his father. Part of him knows there must be a reason for John to be acquiescing so readily but another part of him is silently fuming that his dad is going to willing put Dean into harm's way.
But John must have picked up on his son's internal struggle because he offers Sam a tiny smile that doesn't quite reach his eyes. "It'll be okay, Sam. Dean will know what to do. He'll be fine."
The phone by the couch rings at least five or six times before Dean reaches it. He's not sure how long he's been asleep but he feels more alive than when he sat down to watch whatever trash was on TV. Looking at the caller display he frowns. It's not a number he recognises which is unusual – he doesn't give this number out very often, it's what he calls his bat phone, emergencies and family only.
He flips it open but says nothing, waiting for the caller to make the first move.
"Sam? You okay?" Dean's instantly on full alert. Sam never calls him Dee any more. Hasn't since he was seven years old and recovering from a particularly nasty bout of tonsillitis.
"Um, yeah," and Sam's voice trails off into an uncertain silence.
Dean waits, heart pounding against his ribcage so hard he thinks it might jump out at any minute. He can hear the fear in his little brother's voice and he knows something is seriously wrong.
"We ran into a little trouble," Sam continues after a slight pause. Dean's only half listening to Sammy though, the blood pulsating through his head is making it hard to hear much other than his own heartbeat pounding in his chest. "Dad's hurt."
Dean's vision frays round the edges briefly as his imagination goes into overdrive. He pictures Dad lying, bleeding out on some dirty floor or suffering in silent agony on the wet forest ground. But as soon as his vision blurs, it snaps back into focus with the next words.
"There's a real party going on here, Dean," Watts taunts down the phone as he smirks at John, resting a proprietary hand on Sam's head. "We'd hate for you to miss the highlight." He pauses for dramatic effect. "You know where we are. Half an hour, Dean, then the fireworks start," and he snaps the phone shut.
"Do you really think my boy is stupid enough to come?" John snarls.
Watts smiles, amusement creeping into his voice. "Oh no, John," he agrees. "That boy's not stupid. But I'll tell you what he is." He lets his hand drop from Sam's head, pulling the young hunter's arms round the back of the chair until his position mirrors that of his father. "He's loyal, John. God knows why but he loves you enough to risk his own life." Watts tests the bonds around Sam's wrists then drops till his mouth is level with Sam's ear.
"What do you think, Sam?" he whispers. "Do you think he'll come?" He straightens up and takes a step back, watching Sam's face, amused by the conflicting emotions running across his captive's face – fear, fury and teenage contempt.
"I know he'll come," Sam snaps. "And I think you'll regret it."