The sicko hillbilly pulled me into Johnny’s view by my hair. I tried to struggle out of his grip, but the three days of no food had effectively weakened me. The bastard drove a fist into my gut and laughed as I crumpled to the floor. He still had my hair in his clutches and I painfully hung by my scalp as I tried to breathe.

Johnny dropped the man in his claws and spat out a mouthful of blood and flesh. The hillbilly stared at the remains of his brother’s dead body, and the monster that stood covered in the gore. From the whimpering that reached my ears, I guessed that the crazy cook mother and the scary little girl with the ice pick were still alive. “You fucking animal, take her instead!” the hillbilly roared and threw me at Johnny. I landed painfully on my side, at Johnny’s feet. Through a mess of hair, I looked up at him.

He towered over me, despite being hunched in his bestial form. Blood dripped down his jaw. He looked down at me with terrifying translucent eyes. I couldn’t tell if there was any slivers of recognition in his expression at all. He dropped low to look at me closer, sniffing a little. He reached out a bloody clawed hand and pushed the hair out of my face, leaning smears of blood on my cheek. The claw running across my skin was sharp¬†and without a doubt would tear my face open with just a little more pressure. “Johnny?” I called out. His face came close to mine. It reeked of blood and death. I think he wasn’t aware, but he was growling under his breath. “Oi. Untie me,” I practically growled. He huffed. A laugh? I glared right into his eyes, refusing to show any signs of exhaustion, of fear.

Three days. Three long days of a psycho cannibalistic family tormenting me in a locked shed; threatening me with disembowelment, dismemberment and rape. Fuck that. “Now,” I said sharply, my gaze unwavering. The corners of Johnny’s mouth drew back, flashing rows of sharp bloody canine teeth. With a powerful, immediate yank, he broke the thin chains binding my arms together behind my back with both of his hands. He hauled me to my feet a bit roughly, gripping my shoulders with those sharp clawed hands of his. His eyes shone differently now. Amusement? He loosened his grip for a bit after determining that I was angry enough to stand on my own two feet.

Damn it! My knees wobbled and I sank down. He caught me and hauled me over his shoulder. Looks like he still retained some human sense. “Let’s get out of here,” he mumbled and turned to leave. I was about to protest, but his trembling shoulders made me halt. Why was he shaking so much? At that moment, all my anger dissipated. Was he holding himself back from full Hulk mode?¬†“Put me down,” I mumbled. He ignored me and continued walking.

The whimpers behind us turned to anguished screams as the women crowded over the body of the dead guy. I lifted my head to look at them, to see what they looked like in grief, but my eye caught a glint from behind them. “Johnny!” I screamed and swung myself off his shoulder. The momentum carried him down with me and moments later a shotgun shell exploded into the pillar right next to where we were standing. We both tumbled painfully to the ground, but Johnny somehow managed to cradle my head protectively. He looked up to snarl at the other hillbilly brother who was pointing a shotgun at us.

Johnny dropped me to the floor. The glint in his eyes became ferocious again. Faster than I could flip myself right side up, he pounced over the crying women and onto the man. He went down screaming, his blood gushing out from his neck like his brother. The mother and the girl got to their feet, horrified beyond words. “You…” the mother turned to look at me. “You brought that demon into our house. You!!” she screamed and lunged towards me. I scrambled to my feet, away from her and grabbed a sickle nearby. The woman stopped forming words and instead was shrieking at me, trying to claw my eyes out. In the scuffle, I swung the sickle blindly. She stopped flailing around and stared down at the farming tool sticking out from her abdomen. Silently, she collapsed to her knees and never moved again. I heard an even higher pitched scream and turned to see the little girl running towards me with the ice pick. I readied myself to tackle her, but a shadow passed behind her and bear-hugged her. Johnny’s strength pinned her into an unmovable state, no matter how much she struggled and screamed.

I approached the girl, nothing but revenge on my mind. “Ey, remember this?” I held out my wounded hand, the one she bit viciously as a joke when her brothers first kidnapped me. The girl tired to recoil, but Johnny’s arms were like steel bars. I don’t think even Johnny could comprehend what I did next.

I sank my blunt human teeth into the girls arm and gnashed my teeth together. The scream she made was identical to mine when she bit me. Surprised, Johnny dropped the girl and took a step back. Completely devoid of any human empathy, I dropped the girl from my jaws and backhanded her full force before she could swing the ice pick at me. The girl collapsed to the floor soundlessly.

Gasping, I spat out the chunk of her small arm and collapsed to the ground too. Johnny bent over me, his features returning to its human qualities. His eyes regarded me with a strange expression and I felt sick. But he didn’t say anything. Wordlessly, he slipped his arms under my legs and torso and carried me out, away from that sick place.