After departing Whateley (soon to be renamed Doubleday) on good terms with everyone but the mine owner, the party (plus Maria) travels down out of the mountains to the town of Defiance, railhead for the Bee Line. Upon learning that all firearms must be turned in to the Sheriff upon entering the town, most of the party elects to remain outside while Argent and his longsword head into town to buy ingredients for the spell to banish the Hateful Thing.
While in town, Argent witness the execution of the bandit known as the Mad Arab. Curiously, the body is hauled out into the desert for burial under heavy guard by Sheriff’s Deputies. Argent also learns from Sheriff Roark that there is a railroad workers’ strike going on. The railroad sent down its enforcer Mr. Schmidt to crush the strike, but the Sheriff has prevented him from using strikebreakers. Instead, bodies have been turning up in the strikers’ camp and now in town. Roark suspects Schmidt released a chupacabra, but so far he’s seen no sign of whatever is causing the deaths.
Argent returns with the news from town and that night the heroes set up in the cemetery overlooking the town. Inside its wrought iron fence they plan to force the Hateful Thing to manifest so it can be destroyed. The creature raises skeletons from the graves to attack them, but their silver bullets prove too much and it is destroyed.
The next day, the heroes head over to the strikers’ camp to investigate the situation. Another body has turned up, drained of its blood like all the others, with no sign of the killer. Jack determines that it could not be a chupacabra, but there are several other blood-drinking beings it could be. Argent learns that Schmidt is a deadly fencer prickly enough to accept any challenge—but then, he’s killed every man he’s faced.
Argent proves his match, however, dodging Schmidt’s attack and then skewering him like a sausage. The celebrations are short lived, however, as the heroes learn that a terrifying creature has broken out of Schmidt’s room in the Golden Spike Hotel downtown and is going on a killing spree.
The party races to confront the beast, which turns out to be a Nosferatu. The monster proves resilient to gunfire and when Argent thrusts the Cross of Coronado at it, the creature is disturbed but does not recoil. Vincent’s Burninator only manages to set the hotel on fire. Finally, Hightower manages to kill the vampire with multiple shots to the heart.