Illuminated by the flashing lights from police cars and ambulances in front of the Hackett's quarry lodge, with officers and counselors scurrying around and trying to make sense of the night that had just passed, Kaitlyn felt Dylan tug on her hoodie with his good hand.
"Hey, you made it!" Dylan said to someone.
Kaitlyn followed his gaze and her mood instantly soured.
Ryan was leaning against the hood of the minivan, his expression neutral even in the face of Dylan's bright smile.
"If we're stating the obvious: you're alive too," Ryan remarked dryly.
And Kaitlyn had had enough.
"Yeah, no thanks to you," she huffed.
"O… kay?" Ryan said.
"Seriously!” she continued. “Me and Dylan barely made it out alive after you abandoned us."
"Well, we – it wasn't that bad," Dylan tried.
"We survived by the skin of our teeth and you know it," Kaitlyn said. "Especially since Romeo here decided to just up and leave his friends to go with some random chick on the off chance he might be able to save the camp leader –"
"You were doing just fine," Ryan said. He still wasn't raising his voice, which pissed Kaitlyn off even more.
"Dylan’s missing a fucking hand!" she screeched.
Dylan flinched and rubbed at his wrist self-consciously. The medics had checked him over and properly disinfected the wound before giving him the proper meds, but Kaitlyn would make sure that he was taken to a hospital as soon as they were out of here.
"It's a miracle he didn't go into shock or pass out from the blood loss!” she relayed the paramedics’ comments to a way too indifferent Ryan. “You fucking knew that and you still ditched us. And for what!? To stop the only person in this fucking camp who had a clue what was going on from putting a stop to this whole thing!?"
"To be fair," Laura piped up from nearby. She was sitting on the ground, filling out the same hush-hush form they'd all been forced to sign in exchange for no charges pressed against them. "Ryan was the one who shot Chris since I had already turned. Without him there, we'd all probably be dead."
"Or," Kaitlyn said. "You would've made it to Chris on time if you didn't have to carry this dead weight with you. I doubt he just agreed to kill Chris without a good half an hour of whining and slowing you down."
Laura looked to consider for a bit, before she shrugged and turned back to the paperwork.
"Hey, I saved Nick and Jacob in the basement," Ryan protested.
"I mean," Dylan started, "Jacob said he almost got mauled on his way back to the lodge because you guys just left him in his undies to fend for himself."
"Yeah, about that," Kaitlyn said. "After you killed Chris oh-so-heroically, why the fuck didn't you come back to the lodge? It never crossed your mind that your goddamn friends needed you? That we needed you!? You just went off on some crazy cop's wild goose chase!"
"That’s not fair,” Laura said. “If we didn't end the curse at its source, even more people would have been hurt.”
"Quit riding his dick! Don't you have a fucking boyfriend?" Kaitlyn spat.
Dylan snickered behind Kaitlyn and Laura gave them a sharp look. Eventually, she seemed to decide it wasn't worth the argument and stood up to leave for where the paramedics were still talking to her boyfriend.
"You left us to die, Ryan," Kaitlyn said, giving the asshole her best glare. "We survived because of pure, dumb luck."
"Hey, I rocked that crane at the scrapyard!" Dylan grinned.
"What were you doing in a scrapyard?" Ryan said.
Kaitlyn angrily gestured to the still non-functioning minivan behind him. "Looking for the rotor arm! To get us and our friends out of here – you know, the exact opposite of what you were doing!"
Ryan scoffed. "That was dumb. You should have just stayed at the lodge."
"Oh no, we almost got killed at the lodge too!" Dylan sing-songed. "Kaitlyn really saved my ass."
"Just paying you back for the scrapyard,” Kaitlyn grinned. "Wow, it's nice to have friends looking out for each other, huh?"
"Subtle," Ryan deadpanned. Like he ever did anything else.
"I can't believe I had a fucking crush on you," Kaitlyn said. "I can't believe we both had a crush on you."
Finally, Ryan looked uncertain. "Had?"
"Oh yeah, no, had," Dylan said. "You really made your stance painfully obvious. Get it? Because after the chainsaw –?"
Kaitlyn raised her eyebrow at his floundering.
"With the whole kiss-amputate-ditch thing. Not exactly how I imagine most one night stands go, but – yeah," Dylan said. His tone was jovial but he held his missing hand behind his back, maybe unconsciously.
God, Kaitlyn would get that boy some therapy once this was all over.
"I'm sorry about what happened to your hand," Ryan said. "But none of that was my fault."
Dylan averted his eyes. "I know."
Kaitlyn, however, wasn't having any of it. "You had the gun and were supposed to be watching his back, so…"
"Kaitlyn," Dylan said. "It's okay. It wasn't anyone's fault."
And that was all it took for her to drop the subject. Damn; she had really come to care for this nerd over the course of the night.
"Fine," Kaitlyn said. "It still doesn't change the fact that he led you on the whole night, until conveniently ditching you the first chance he got right after what happened at the radio shack. Not even Emma was that cruel."
"For fuck's sake, me leaving had nothing to do with his hand," Ryan argued.
"Oh, right!" Kaitlyn said with fake cheer, clapping her hands together. "It just had to do with you choosing to go with a chick you hated, to save the one person who fucking put us into danger in the first place–"
"This wasn't Chris' fault!" Ryan exclaimed with much more heat than Kaitlyn had anticipated.
"I dunno man, having a full camp of kids around when you're gonna turn into a werewolf every full moon? Doesn't seem very safe to me," Dylan said.
"He made precautions to keep everyone safe," Ryan said.
"You mean with the sex dungeon?" Dylan interjected.
Ryan made a disgusted face. "Stop calling it that."
"Even if Chris was chained up somewhere, they still knew there was this crazy wolf boy running around! No amount of trail cameras would’ve helped with that," Kaitlyn said. At least Laura had filled them in on the details of Silas. "Chris may have been a good dad, but he was not a good man."
Ryan stood up. "You take that back!"
"Oh, now you finally show emotion!?" Kaitlyn snapped. "Not when Dylan got his goddamn hand chopped off, or when Nick exploded into a monster!? But when your precious Chris is spoken ill of!?"
"Hey!" the cop, Travis, called out to them. "That's enough. Keep it down."
Kaitlyn saw him standing near where Abi was hovering over Nick, the Aussie looking to be sleeping. He must have been exhausted after running around munching on people all night.
"Will do, Sir," Dylan said, offering a mock salute. He probably still hadn't connected the dots that the cop was Chris' brother, bless him.
"Whatever," Ryan said, picking up his things from the hood of the car. "Fuck this shit."
Ryan walked away and Kaitlyn bit her cheek to stop herself from calling out after him. She had said her piece, and now neither her nor Dylan would hopefully have to deal with him again.
"Well, there he goes," Dylan sighed. "I assume this means no steamy reunion kiss."
Kaitlyn snorted at the dry humor. "Tell me again why it took us this long to become friends?"
"Uh, because you're cool as hell and thought I was a loser?" Dylan said.
"I never thought that," Kaitlyn said. "I just thought you were unfunny and tried way too hard."
"Oh, because that's so much better," Dylan grinned and nudged her. "Maybe I played it up because you needed to lighten up, Ms. Resting Bitch Face."
Kaitlyn smiled and bumped him with her hip. "Yeah, well, you really grew on this bitch.”
"Like a tumor," Dylan winked. "Shame it didn't work on Ryan."
"Fuck Ryan! You deserve so much better," Kaitlyn said. "We both do."
"Yeah," Dylan said. He turned to look over at the other counselors. "I actually believe you."
Silence passed between them as they watched the others finish up their business. Kaitlyn gave a disgusted scoff when she noticed Ryan had already made his way back to Laura. But she smiled when she saw Jacob excitedly recounting his “heroic escape” to some unimpressed police officer, and at the way Emma had joined Abi and Nick and was comforting the redhead with a hug.
And Kaitlyn knew they'd all be okay. Even if this night had left both mental and physical scars – along with a sour taste in her mouth regarding some of her fellow counselors – she firmly wanted to believe that it had, in true Hackett's summer camp fashion, also made them stronger.
"So…" Dylan broke the silence and gave her a mischievous smirk. "How about Jacob in those speedos?"
Kaitlyn laughed. "See? This is why we're friends."