Disclaimer: I don't own anything that even remotely resembles Supernatural.
Now I'm not a mind reader or anything but I knew why John wanted Dean to keep an eye on me. The guy just flat didn't trust me, not yet. It was not surprising though Due to this gift that Michael had bestowed on me I have always had to earn peoples trust once the found out about me. What really sucked is when I'd known the person for years or even decades and then they accidentally found out. I'd have to earn their trust all over again. It used to bother me a lot, but now it's not nearly as bothersome as it is annoying.
I found the faint trail and followed it. I've got to admit it was nice having someone watch my back for a change, even if they were watching me too. As we slipped through the forest I became more and more impressed with the Winchester men. They were awesome woodsman, something you hardly find anymore unless it's on an Indian reservation. They hardly made a sound as they followed. Several times I thought I'd lost them they were so quiet, but when I looked back they were still there following silently.
We'd been following the wendigo's scent for several hours as it slowly got stronger. I knew we were nearing the creatures' lair so I began to look for a good place to stop and take a break. In the form of the leopard I really didn't need one, but the Winchesters were only human after all. And while neither had said a word I knew they should take a break before the action began. I could smell the sweet scent of their sweat even though they weren't even breathing hard at the minor exertions of the trail.
In retrospect that's probably where I made the biggest mistake on this hunt. Either we should have stopped earlier or we should have kept going. I just didn't realize how close we really were to its lair. I found us a small clearing with a single large tree in the center. The tree provided shade and we had enough open ground around us to be able to see an attack coming. I walked up to the tree and lay down without shifting shapes.
"Guess this means it's time for a break," Dean told his father pulling out a canteen and taking a drink.
"Fifteen minutes," John told his son. The man was nuts, how much freaking rest did he think they was going to get in fifteen minutes? I lifted my head and growled at him. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Dean reach under his jacket. John shook his head at his son and raised his eyebrows at me. "Thirty minutes," he corrected himself.
I lowered my head back down to my paws and watched as John pulled out his own canteen. Then he nodded to his son and Dean sat down next to me and leaned his back against the tree. I watched as he cautiously reached over and put his hand in the fur of my neck. "Wow," he exclaimed quietly.
I leaned my head over and laid it down in his lap allowing him to rub my neck. I'm not sure why, but it really did feel good to have someone petting me. Granted, it was a little embarrassing to think about it, but who the hell cares it felt good. In fact it was distracting and in this instance that was a really bad thing. Between the neck rub he was laying on me and the scent I was inhaling from having my head in his lap I was totally unfocused.
That's how the wendigo was able to get so close without me catching its scent. It wasn't until it I heard the stick snap that I realized something was wrong. I jumped up on my feet growling and was impressed to find Dean standing next to me. John moved up behind us watching the other side of the clearing. Both of them had their flair guns out and ready.
The wendigo moved so fast I almost didn't see it as glided through the woods around us. I could tell from Dean's reaction that he had not seen it move but he knew that it had. It zipped around the woods being careful to stay out of the clearing. Even with the eyes of the leopard I had trouble keeping the creature in sight. It screamed several times as it ran back and forth and occasionally complete a full circle. It was trying to confuse us, but with my leopards abilities I was able to keep track of it even when it wasn't in sight. Then just as suddenly as it appeared, it was gone.
I raised my nose to sniff the air in an attempt to determine where it went but its scent was all around the clearing making it a difficult task. With absolutely no warning the creature leapt from the clearing landing within a few feet of Dean and I. John shoved Dean away from the creature as I jumped at it. The wendigo caught me by the neck with both hands and tossed me away like I was a five pound bag of sugar.
I heard the booming sizzle of a flare gun go off and Dean yelled, "Dad!" Then my head struck the tree and darkness cascaded over me.