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What Lives in the Lake Recap

At a lake in the mountains, a man named Steve is fishing when something snags his line. It first pulls the boat along and then pulls Steve into the water where he quickly goes under.

Late one night, Kim and Eric pull over on the lake shore to kiss. Something briefly brushes Kim's pants and she tells Eric to stop. He assures her that he isn't doing anything and they see something moving in the woods. A large creature with glowing red eyes surges up out of the forest and the couple scream in terror.

The Impala breaks down outside of the town near the lake and Dean reluctantly turns it over to a nearby mechanic to fix. They check into a motel and then go to the local saloon for the drinks. The redheaded waitress, Linda, flirts with Dean and admits that she's also from out of town. She is working as a waitress to make enough money to move on. Dean offers her a ride and Linda says that she'll think about it. Once Linda leaves, Sam reminds his brother that they have more important things to worry about. Dean tells him to relax because they're stuck in the small town until they get the Impala repaired.

Three out-of-towners are at a nearby table discussing hunting down the lake creature and the Winchesters overhear them. The bartender, Ed, comes over and gets the brothers free drinks, and tells them that a lot of out-of-towners have shown up to hunt the monster. It's attacked several times and the reports are all over the Internet. The Winchesters return to their motel room and Sam checks the Internet reports. There have been sightings of a giant scaled creature, but Dean dismisses it as an overgrown fish. However, the town has recently suffered through a drought, a swarm of bees have turned up dead simultaneously, and there have been reports of radio interference. Sam figures that it all adds up to demon signs and Dean reluctantly admits that they should look into it.

First the Winchesters go to the hospital to talk to Steve. The doctor refuses to let the brothers see the fisherman, but is called away on an emergency before he can explain why. Sam and Dean then talk to Kim and Eric, who explain that after they drove away, they realized that the creature was in the car with them. They went off the road and when they woke up, it was morning.

The brothers go to the crash site and scan for any unusual EM readings but find nothing. Dean irritably figures that they're wasting their time just as they hear something moving in the woods. The brothers draw their guns and charge into the brush, and find the three monster-hunters from the saloon on the other side. The men are frightened, figuring the Winchesters were the monster. Sam and Dean go back to their motel room and Dean is ready to give up. Sam figures that they're missing something... just as the music on the motel clock radio is overwhelmed by static.

In the forest, the monster-hunters have set up camp for the night. Their radio jams and they hear something moving in their tent. They grab a camera and go in, filming, only to discover that something has gotten into their food supply. As they worry about what they're going to do for breakfast, a shadow appears on the side of the tent. The three men run outside just as lightning hits the tent, setting it on fire.

The next day Sam and Dean hear about the incident and go to investigate. The monster-hunters lost their camera in the fire and have no evidence to back up their story. However, Sam finds a large fish scale in the charred remains. He takes it back to the saloon and checks the Internet, and tells Dean that it belongs to a Yam. A Yam is an Asian water demon that feeds on humans. Linda hears them talking and asks what they have, and Dean claims that they're screenwriters discussing a new movie plot. A local man, Bruce, stops in to get supplies and tells Linda that he and two friends, Willy and Chuck, are going out to kill the creature before it hurts anyone else. Dean immediately offers to go along to lend a hand and volunteers Sam as well.

That night, Sam and Dean stand out in the storm with Bruce and his friends. Dean figures that the three locals will need their help, but Sam points out that they don't have any idea how to kill a Yam either. Despite Sam's objections, Dean points out that their father would tell them to help if he was there. Chuck and Willy head off into the woods and something grabs Willy. Chuck comes running back and the creature grabs him and drags him into the brush. Sam, Dean, and Bruce go after the man... and the cliff face collapses behind them due to the pouring rain.

When the sun comes up and the rain clears, the three men search the woods and find Chuck's discarded rifle. They follow a trail of spent shell casings further into the woods and find Chuck and Willy's bodies lying at the base of a tree. However, Bruce is surprised when he discovers that his friends are alive and unharmed. Sam begins to suspect what is really going on and tells Dean that he needs to check something out.

Sam goes back to the hospital with his brother and talks to Steve. The fisherman explains that he was fine after he fell into the water. He has a bad heart and only checked into the hospital as a precaution. Fortunately for him, because the doctors found a hidden condition. Upon hearing Steve's story, Sam tells Dean that they're not dealing with a Yam.

Later, Sam gathers everyone at the saloon and explains what has been happening. The creature was actually saving lives. It dragged Chuck and Willy away so that Sam, Dean, and Bruce would follow... and they all escaped the landslide. If the monster-hunters hadn't run, they would have been in the tent when the lighting hit. The creature drove Kim and Eric off the road, but only to keep them from being caught in a major truck crash a short distance down the road.

Sam explains that the helpful creature is a Japanese water specter, a Kappa. It helps humans and only brushed against Kim to take the stick of gum in her back pocket. It took the monster-hunters' food from their tent as payment for its services. Ed speaks up, telling everyone about how he was a boy, he fell in the water when he was fishing. When he woke up, he was lying on the shore and missing the candy from his pocket. The bartender figures that Sam is right and tells everyone that they should let the Kappa alone.

Once the Impala is fixed, Sam and Dean pack up to leave. Dean wonders about all the demon signs that Sam identified, and his brother points out a nearby chemical factory truck. The local factory has been interfering with the town's radio reception, and rumor has it that it's dumping toxic waste, accounting for the drought. As for the dead bees, Sam figures that the Kappa is responsible: it went after the bees for their honey because it has a sweet tooth. Linda comes over and thanks the Winchesters for everything, but says that she has enough money to leave town. When Dean invites her to come with them, Linda says that she already has a ride and gets in the SUV with the three monster-hunters. Disgusted, Dean gets in the Impala and drives off with Sam.

Later, Linda kills the three monster-hunters, cutting their throats. She then uses the blood for a ritual to contact Azazel, and informs him that the Winchesters don't have the Colt. Azazel tells her to keep an eye on Sam and Dean. Once he breaks the connection, "Linda" removes her redheaded wig, revealing that she's Meg.

Written by Gadfly on May 22, 2016

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