Warning: this story contains Stranger Things spoilers for Season 4 Volume 1. Stranger Things 4 ends with a two-episode finale July 1 on Netflix — and fans fear a major death could turn Hawkins upside down. Volume 1 unleashed vengeful villain Vecna (Jamie Campbell Bower), a.k.a. One, who warns Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) in the Stranger Things 4 Volume 2 trailer: "It's over. Your friends have lost." Those friends include Steve Harrington (Joe Keery) and Nancy Wheeler (Natalia Dyer), who went through an underwater gate into the Upside Down with Robin (Maya Hawke) and Eddie Munson (Joseph Quinn).
As the party searched for Vecna's lair in the Upside Down version of Hawkins, Steve was bitten by swarming demobats. "Do you guys think these bats have, like, rabies?" asked Robin in "Chapter Seven: The Massacre at Hawkins Lab." In what may be foreshadowing, she advised Steve, "We should get you to a doctor soon because once symptoms set in, it's too late. You're already dead."
After realizing the Upside Down is frozen in time — November 6, 1983, the day Will Byers (Noah Schnapp) disappeared in the first season — Nancy fell victim to Vecna's curse, the spell that nearly killed Max (Sadie Sink) before she escaped Vecna's Mind Lair in "Chapter Four: Dear Billy."
With help from a Lite Brite-wielding Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) in the real Hawkins, Robin and Eddie escaped from the Upside Down and crossover into Eddie's trailer, where Vecna violently killed cheerleader Chrissy Cunningham (Grace Van Dien) in "Chapter One: The Hellfire Club." Volume 1 ended with exes Steve and Nancy stuck in the Upside Down, Nancy spellbound by Vecna's curse capable of being broken with a victim's favorite song.
While Volume 1 left off with Nancy under Vecna's spell, it's Steve's fate that saw Netflix erect a billboard with a worrying message ahead of the penultimate season's two-part finale: "Protect Steve." Should Robin's worst fears come true, her demobat-bitten BFF could succumb to supernatural rabies, leaving Dustin and friends without their beloved "babysitter."
Group newcomer Eddie "The Freak" Munson, who quickly became a fan favorite as the death metal and Dungeons & Dragons game master of the Hellfire Club, could suffer the same fate as one-off characters like Barb (Shannon Purser) and Bob (Sean Astin), both horrifically killed by Demogorgons. "There's no shame in running," Eddie said earlier in Season 4, suggesting he might finally stop running and sacrifice himself to save his newfound group of friends outside the "loser" Hellfire Club.
Consisting of two super-sized episodes, Stranger Things 4: Volume 2 is streaming Friday, July 1 on Netflix.
Stranger Things 4 stars Winona Ryder (Joyce Byers), David Harbour (Jim Hopper), Millie Bobby Brown (Eleven/Jane), Finn Wolfhard (Mike Wheeler), Gaten Matarazzo (Dustin Henderson), Caleb McLaughlin (Lucas Sinclair), Noah Schnapp (Will Byers), Sadie Sink (Max Mayfield), Natalia Dyer (Nancy Wheeler), Charlie Heaton (Jonathan Byers), Joe Keery (Steve Harrington), Maya Hawke (Robin Buckley), Priah Ferguson (Erica Sinclair), Brett Gelman (Murray), Matthew Modine (Dr. Brenner), Robert Englund (Victor Creel), and Jamie Campbell Bower (Vecna).