"Metamorphosis”
--Robin's Rambles by Robin Vogel
 
With Ruby at his side, Sam works his mind-mojo to exorcise a demon, but the man taunts him about being a hero and "all the things you and this slut do in the dark." Sam successfully kills the demon, making Ruby smile, but he has no idea Dean is watching outside the window.

Sam tests the working pulse of the host body and reports to Ruby, “I feel good--no more headaches.” He's helping the man walk out when Dean enters, furious, demanding to know who SHE is. "Good to see you again, Dean," says Ruby. Dean immediately attacks her, all set to murder her with the demon-killing knife. Ruby and Dean battle it out until Ruby has Dean in a choke-hold. Sam intervenes, orders her to stop. She does. "Aren't you an obedient little bitch," gasps Dean. Sam sends Ruby to the emergency room with the victim. "Dean!" calls Sam, but his brother walks away from him.


Motel room - Sam sits alone, reading a book. Dean enters and begins packing; he and Ruby can fight demons, they don't need him. Dean punches Sam, hard. "Satisfied?" asks Sam. Dean punches him again. "I guess not," says Sam, his lip bleeding. "Do you even know how far off the reservation you've gone?" demands Dean. "How far from normal, from human?" "I'm just exorcising demons," insists Sam. "WITH YOUR MIND!" shouts Dean. "What else can you do?" "I can send them back to hell," says Sam. "It only works with demons, that's it." Dean doesn't believe that's all. "I'm pulling demons out of innocent people," Sam reminds him, "the knife kills the host!--I've saved more people in the last five months than we've saved in a year!" "Is that what Ruby wants you to think?" asks Dean--”the way she tricked you into using your powers? Slippery slope, brother, because it's going to get darker and darker and God knows where it ends. It's already gone too far. . .if I didn't know you, I would wanna hunt you--and so would other hunters." (oh, God, that hurt me!) Sam, tearing up, says, "You were gone. I was here. I had to keep on fighting without you. And what I'm doing--it works." "Tell me," says Dean, "if it's so terrific, why did you lie about it to me? Why did an angel tell me to stop you? Cas said that if I don't stop you, he will. That means that GOD doesn't want you doing this. So are you just going to stand there telling me that everything is all good?" Sam looks miserable. The phone rings. It's Travis, a fellow hunter, with a case. Although Sam says it's a bad time, he takes the details: Carthage, Missouri, looking for Jack Montgomery.

Carthage, MO - Montgomery house - Jack Montgomery is eating, making a pig out of himself. His wife, watching him devour dinner, asks if he's stoned. Just starving, he says. He asks for dessert, polishes off the mashed potatoes, takes what's left of her steak, even though he's already eaten two. She suggests he has tapeworm. "I've never felt better," he chortles. Later, brushing his teeth, Jack feels sudden agony when his spine appears to pulse painfully inside his body, going into frightening contortions.

Montgomery house - Dean and Sam sit outside in the Impala, observing Jack through the kitchen window. At first, Dean complains there's no evidence of the "weird" Travis asked them to look for. Learning he won't be eating dinner for 45 minutes, Jack helps himself to a beer. He also eats some leftover chicken, peeling off meat like an animal and stuffing it into his mouth. Next, he dives into some raw chopped meat, shoving it into his mouth with ravenous delight, letting the blood pour down his chin and onto his white shirt. (gross!) He acts as if in a trance until his wife calls his name, then he comes out of it, looking guilty. Sam remarks, "I'd say THAT qualifies as weird."

The brothers enter their hotel room to find Travis drinking their beer. He hugs Dean, then Sam, remarking on how tall the latter has gotten. "Are you still a Mathlete?" Travis asks. Sam says no, Dean, teasingly, Sure is!" "John would have been damn proud of you, sticking together like this," says Travis, who has a broken arm. "Nothin' more important than family," agrees Dean. (Why is there always someone to rub it in?) Travis thanks them for their help--did they track down Montgomery? Yes, but all Jack has is a serious case of the munchies and a tendency to eat raw hamburger meat. Travis explains that Jack Montgomery is turning from human to rugaru--nasty suckers. As Travis narrates, we get a glimpse at what's happening at the Montgomery house--Jack's wife cuts herself making dinner, he turns his attention from the fridge to her bleeding finger. Travis explains that first, the rugaru is hungry for everything, then. . .the longpig. Dean needs a translation of what that is; Sam supplies it: "Human flesh." Hunger grows for human flesh until the rugaru can't take it anymore and must enjoy that first juicy chunk. Jack watches his wife wash the blood from her finger, his eyes wide with hunger. "Then it happens," says Travis, "they transform completely and fast." Jack's wife tells him she needs stitches, but he mutters, "I gotta go, I gotta get outta here." She calls after him, but he leaves the house. "One bite is all it takes," says Travis, "eyes, teeth, skin, it all turns; there's no going back, either--they feed once, they're a monster forever, and our man Jack's headed there on a bullet train." Travis explains he killed Jack's father in 1978, creature killed eight people before he took him down--the guy was a dentist who had a pregnant wife. The child was put up for adoption, and by the time Travis found out, he was long gone, lost in the system--he didn't have the heart to track down the child, but he has tracked down the man now.


Bar - Jack inhales booze and gobbles peanuts. He thinks about his wife's bloody cut and blood running through veins in general. He catches sight of his haggard face in the mirror behind the bar. He orders another drink and more peanuts. He overhears a chunky guy trying to pick up a pretty brunette sitting at the bar and orders the "Fat, sweaty dick" to leave her alone. Jack, more than eager to get into a fight, breaks his opponent's hand (or so it appears) and the girl runs away in terror

Dean and Travis work on making super flamethrowers, because deep-frying is the only way to kill rugarus. That's how Travis offed Jack's father. Sam returns and reports he's been checking out the lore on rugarus--Jack's doesn't necessarily have to "hulk out." Travis is miffed that his 30 years of experience isn't enough for Sam, but Dean assures him that Sam loves research, he keeps it under his mattress next to his K-Y (LMAO!) "Those with the rugaru gene," explains Sam, "if they never eat human flesh, they never transform. Eat a lot of raw meat, just not longpig." "Fairytales," says Travis," every rugaru I ever saw or heard of took that first bite." "That doesn't mean Jack will," insists Sam. "We talk to him, that way he can fight it." "We're meat on legs to him now," says Travis, "he's hungry! I'm sure he's a stand-up guy, but this is pure, base instinct." Sam insists they aren't going to kill him unless he does something to get killed for. Sam leaves. "What's up with your brother?" asks Travis. "Don't get me started," warns Dean.

Montgomery house - Jack's wife is pissed at him for forcing her to drive herself to the hospital; she was there until 2 AM. He saw the blood and got dizzy, he explains, he had to get out. But he didn't even call, she complains, she left him a dozen messages. His phone died, he couldn't find a pay phone--"But I AM sorry," he says sincerely, "and I promise it will never happen again, and certainly, not to a wife as STUNNING as you." He gets all affectionate and smoochy. She remarks it had better not, blood never bothered him before, As he begins kissing her with more fervor, she advises him to "think diamonds, Kobe-sized." He lifts her onto the counter and kisses her behind her ears, her neck; she asks, "What has gotten into you?" He doesn't know. Then his actions are harder, harsher, more like rape than passion, and she orders him to stop. When he doesn't, she escapes his grasp. "You son of a bitch!" she cries. "I'm sorry," he whispers. "What the hell is wrong with you?" she demands. "I don't know," he replies, and leaves.

Sam is annoyed with Dean, who keeps referring to Jack as "that guy." He has a name and a wife, Sam reminds him. Who they are probably going to be making a widow, says Dean, by burning him alive. They argue--maybe Jack can fight off the urge to turn, says Sam. And maybe he can't, counters Dean, who suggests that Sam's emotions are getting in the way here--nice dude, but he's got something evil inside him, something in his blood-- maybe you can relate. "Stop the car!" orders Sam. Dean pulls over and both get out of the car. "You wanna know why I've been lying to you, Dean? Because of crap like this! The way you talk to me, the way you look at me, like I'm a freak, or even worse, like I'm an idiot and don't know the difference between right and wrong." "DO you know the difference?"asks Dean--"you've been kind of strolling a dark road lately!" "You have no idea what I'm going through--none," says Sam passionately--I'VE GOT DEMON BLOOD RUNNING THROUGH ME, DEAN, THIS DISEASE PUMPING THROUGH MY VEINS, AND I CAN'T EVER RUB IT OUT OR SCRUB IT CLEAN! I'M A WHOLE NEW LEVEL OF FREAK! And I'm just trying to take this. . .curse and make something GOOD out of it. . .because I have to." Dean, guilty, sad and sorry, says, "Let's just go talk to the guy." Sam snorts. "I mean Jack," adds Dean.

Montgomery backyard - Jack stands watering his garden, his thoughts miles away. Sam introduces himself and Dean to Jack. When he sees Sam unable to begin saying what needs to be said, Dean says, "You've probably noticed your bones moving under your skin, and your appetite reaching Hungry Hungry Hippo levels." "Who the hell are you guys?" asks Jack. "We're people here to help," answers Sam compassionately, "please, hear us out." After they explain about the rugaru, Jack can't accept it, even after Sam tells him his real father was one, and passed it on to him. Dean lays it on the line, "You're hungry and you're only going to get hungrier, for longpig, or Manburger Helper--hasn't it crossed your mind already?" "No," lies Jack. "You can fight this off," says Sam, "others have." "It won't be easy," says Dean, "you'll feel like an alcoholic swimming around in whiskey." "You feed once and it's all over," says Sam, "and then we'll have to stop you." "My dad, did somebody 'stop' him?" asks Jack. "Yes," replies Sam. Jack orders them off his property; he sees them again, he's calling the cops. Sam reminds him everyone Jack knows, including his wife, is in danger. "NOW" shouts Jack, overheard by his next-door neighbor. As the brothers leave, Dean says to Sam, "Good talk." Jack, distressed, watches them go.

Jack sits on a bench, listening to a message on his cell phone from his wife: "Please come home, we have to talk." He hangs up, staring up at the window of the woman he rescued in the bar. She's opened her blouse, revealing her bra. Jack stares up at her, hungry. He stands and walks across the street, heading for her apartment. From the Impala, the Winchesters watch him. "Damn it, Jack, no!" says Sam. The brothers each take hold of a flame thrower from the back seat. Jack is already ascending the fire escape to the woman's apartment. The brothers enter through the front door. Jack stares through the sheer black curtain; the woman slides off her bra and puts on a night shirt. Jack's face looks terrible, feral, the whites of his eyes going red. No! he whispers to himself, and his eyes return to normal. Sam and Dean burst through the woman's front door. "We're here to save you, I guess," says Dean lamely, realizing the woman is alone. She screams that she's going to call the police. "We should go," says Sam. Dean agrees, and closes the door behind them, smiling. Jack returns home, looking a lot more human than the last time we saw him. "Michelle," he calls. "I'm home. Hey babe, you here?" He enters the living room and sees his wife tied to a chair, gagged and struggling. Travis appears behind him, covering his mouth with a Chloroform-treated cloth.

 
Jack awakens, handcuffed to a chair. Travis apologizes--"This isn't the way I wanted it to go." He removes Michelle's gag. Travis urges Jack to tell his wife the truth; she deserves to know. Jack begs Travis to let her go, she isn't part of this. Oh, she is, says Travis, tell your husband what you told me when I got here. "I'm pregnant," reveals Michelle, crying. "See the mess we're in?" asks Travis. "I can't make this mistake all over again. I won't be around in 30 years, this has got to end now." To Michelle and Jack's horror, Travis takes out a gas can and spreads the fluid around, saying he has no choice. Unfortunately, Jack's love/lust for his wife gives him the strength to free himself from the handcuffs and attack Travis. Jack re-breaks Travis' arm, then gets his first taste of longpig, homing in on Travis' succulent jugular. Travis screams and twitches as Jack begins to hungrily, greedily feed on him, a piece of flesh hanging from his lips. Michelle watches her husband in disgust and horror. (And may I say, ewwwww!) Jack, his face covered with blood, frees Michelle. "Stay away from me!" she screams, and runs from the house and into her car, driving away as fast as she can. Jack gazes at Travis, around whom a huge pool of blood has now formed.

Dean and Sam pull up in front of the Montgomery house. They see Travis' car--"That stupid SOB," says Dean. They notice the giant blood stain and follow it to what's left of Travis. "I guess you were right about Jack," admits Sam reluctantly. Jack leaps on top of Dean, knocking him unconscious, then Sam, felling him with his own flamethrower.

Sam comes to consciousness and finds himself locked in a closet, blood dripping from his nose, a bad bruise on his forehead. "Dean?" he calls. "Dean can't come to the phone right now," mocks Jack, who now truly looks like a monster, blood covering his face. "Jack! If you hurt him, I swear to God!" warns Sam. "Calm down!" says Jack. "Your brother's alive." Dean is lying on the coffee table, Jack hovering over him. Sam rests his head against the door, panting. "But not if you don't calm down," vows Jack. "Open the door," urges Sam, "we can figure this out, okay?" Jack, close to tears, says, "After what you did?" "What are you talking about?" asks Sam. "You send your friend here," accuses Jack, "he tried to burn my wife alive!" "What? Why?" demands Sam. "He didn't say," lies Jack. Sam grabs a metal hanger and starts working on the lock. "I guess psychopaths don't have to explain themselves," says Jack. He gazes at Dean and begins to longingly check out his body. "Listen to me," begs Sam, "you gotta believe me--my brother and I, we never would have hurt her, okay?" Jack comes up to Dean's face and, with a shaking hand, reaches out and tastes Dean's blood. Wanting more, he begins to rock back and forth. "Oh, God. I'm so hungry!" cries Jack. Sam is working feverishly on the lock. "Jack, don't do this," he pleads. "I can't ever see my family again," cries Jack, turning back to Dean. "You two. . .your friend. You made me into this!" "No one's making you kill us," points out Sam. "You got this dark pit inside you. I know. Believe me, I know. But that doesn't mean you have to fall into it. You don't have to be a monster." "Have you seen me lately?" asks Jack bitterly. "It doesn't matter what you are." says Sam, "It only matters what you do. It's your choice." Jack sits still for a moment, then grunts in pain. He begins to move up to Dean's head again, mouth open, about to devour Dean. Dean begins to awaken. Jack puts a hand on his shoulder, eyes completely fixed on him. "Jack," calls Sam, now standing right behind him, flame thrower and lighter in his hands. Jack lunges for Sam. Dean slowly lifts his head and turns around; over his shoulder we hear Sam flip the lighter and the flamethrower goes off. Dean turns his head back around, shielding it. He watches as Sam burns Jack alive. Jack falls to the floor, in flames. Dean looks at Sam, who's depressed and unhappy that things turned out this way for Jack.

Impala - Dean assures Sam, "You did the right thing--the guy was a monster, there was no going back. I'm sorry, Sam, I've been kinda hard on you lately." "Don't worry about it, Dean," says Sam softly. "It's just. . .your psychic thing scares the crap out of me," admits Dean. "I'd rather not talk about it," says Sam. "You don't wanna talk--YOU?" asks Dean. "There's nothing more to say," Sam says, "I can't keep explaining myself to you, I can't make you understand." "Why don't you try," says Dean. "I can't," insists Sam, "this demon blood, it isn't in you the way it's in me. It's just something I've gotta deal with." "Not alone," Dean assures him. "Anyway, it doesn't matter," says Sam, staring at his reflection in the passenger window. "These powers--it's playin' with fire. I'm done with them--I'm done with everything." "Really?" says Dean. "That's a relief. Thank you." "Don't thank me," says Sam, "I'm not doing it for you, or for the angels or for anybody--this is my choice."

1. Choice – a big theme in SUPERNATURAL. Travis insisted Jack couldn't make a choice, yet he did, when he went to the woman's apartment, to not go in there and do anything bad to her. However, when his pregnant wife was threatened, all bets were off. How do choice and family fare as a pair in SUPERNATURAL, now that we've seen the endgame?

2. It really hurt Sam—and me—when Dean said watching Sam do what he was doing made him something he would want to hunt. Didn't the fact that Sam was saving the host make it better than killing it? Would Dean have been less harsh if he hadn't found Ruby with Sam?

3. Jack and his wife seemed like a nice, ordinary couple. Didn't it break your heart to watch what happened to them? There are so many people who lose their lives and selves on this show. Name someone whose death or loss affected you most. For me it was Pamela Barnes.

4. Do you think Jack's wife was really pregnant or only said so in the hope Travis wouldn't harm her? Another generation of hunter is going to have to hunt down another rugaru in the future, damn it, if she is!

5. When you heard Sam assure Dean he wouldn't use his powers in this episode, did you say to yourself, “Sure, Sam, until you HAVE to”? I did!