Episode Seven, Season Two, of Spy Torture.
This episode is dedicated to Clever, who was a great friend of mine, and made me really happy when she became a fan of many of my series. I hope her cat will appreciate the setting of this episode, in her home Clan :)
A Clan of Stone
“We’re going to do what?” Shard of Ice stared at Stargaze, eyes and mouth wide open in shock, “We can’t do that, they hate us!”
“They hate the Tribe,” Stargaze corrected, “Half of us are Clan cats, Shard, it only makes sense to use the Tribe’s most feared enemies to go fight them.”
Shard sighed, “So you want us to go and recruit all of those fifty or more Clans to fight the Tribe?”
The black she-cat rolled her eyes, “Well, obviously not all the Clans are going to join this war between us and the Tribe, but some will. That’s why we have to try, I mean, some are still being raided by the Tribe!”
The intensity in Stargaze’s voice made Shard rethink, “Alright, I’ll think about it, Stargaze.”
The she-cat dipped her head to Shard, then edged away to have her wounds treated. Cleverpelt had been standing behind Shard, and she softly mewed, “I think I know which Clan we should go to first.”
Glancing back, Shard murmured, “Which Clan then, Cleverpelt?”
The brown tabby she-cat blinked slowly, “The most feared Clan near the Tribe, my home town, and the Clan...that perhaps you hate the most: StoneClan.”
Shard blinked in astonishment, “StoneClan? Do you think they’d really join our cause because of what we did a few moons ago?”
Cleverpelt nodded, “I’m positive, Shard, I’ll go with you if you need me to.” She had wounds from the recent battle, but she had a serious face, and Shard merely gave her a nod.
“Get Stargaze, Tornadostrike, and Brightsong.” Shard mewed, before padding off to see Pathway to Frozen Star.
Her mentor was crouched in her nest, her eyes tightly closed. “Star?” Shard murmured tentatively, “Cleverpelt and Stargaze proposed that I go to the Clans to recruit them. What do you think?”
Star opened one blue eye, “Well, it could be a good idea,” she sighed, “But you must be careful, don’t get into any fights you can’t win, and-”
Shard laughed, “I know, I know, Star, don’t worry.”
“I have to worry though, don’t I?” Star mewed, amused, “Your foster mother made me your mentor, and she expects me to take care of you.”
“Do I need your protection anymore?” Shard challenged.
Pathway to Frozen Star let out a laugh, then mewed, “I guess not,” her eyes softened, “You’ve become more than that fragile she-cat you were.”
Shard shrugged, “I have to become tougher if I want to lead a Rebellion, don’t I?”
Soon, the cats were gathered, and Stargaze shot Shard a questioning look. The white she-cat nodded to Stargaze, and the older she-cat’s eyes narrowed at the gesture. “Why did you call us, Shard?” Brightsong murmured, her eyes focused on something else.
Shard straightened, “I’ve decided, with the help of Stargaze and Cleverpelt, to go to the Clans to ask them to join us in the war against the Tribe.”
Astonished gasps arose from my patrol, and they stared at me, “We’re going to persuade StoneClan first.” Shard added.
She could feel their doubtful gazes as she turned and led the way out.
Cleverpelt slipped in to walk next to Shard. “I’m glad you decided to take my plan into consideration.” The brown tabby she-cat purred, her blue eyes glowing.
“No problem,” Shard mewed easily, “You had a good plan, choosing StoneClan first. They’re formidable enemies of the Tribe, and it would do us much good if they were on our side.”
If only I knew for sure I could persuade them...
Shard pushed the thought aside as Cleverpelt trotted a little way ahead to talk with Stargaze and Tornadostrike. Each one of them looked thrilled to be going back to their Clan.
Even Brightsong’s gaze was wide and bright, as if she was just glad that they were going to be on Clan territory by tonight.
By nightfall, the five of them reached the edge of the wild lands. Off to their right, lay Spy Army territory.
Shard’s paws itched to be back at the main camp, or camp Rushing Fire. But she knew that there was no point in going back until the war was over. But the feeling of peace she had experienced as a kit was irresistible.
Until then, she had to settle with the territory in front of them, the scent of the borders hitting Shard in waves.
“StoneClan territory...” Tornadostrike breathed in excitement.
Shard glanced at the tom. He normally didn’t talk, and kept silent when the others discussed plans. But he was exuberant; eager to return to the Clan he was raised in. “Let’s make camp,” the aforementioned tom mewed, “The StoneClan camp is too far for us to reach by tonight.”
The white she-cat nodded her agreement, and the others spread out to search for moss and feathers.
What they didn’t notice, was that a cat was spying on them from the trees.
Ice of the Melting Rock was loving the breeze. She was scooted up a tree, for the it was still green-leaf, and her pelt didn’t blend well anywhere.
She sighed. Life as a spy for Snarl was utterly boring, but she loved her task. Just the fact that she was deemed more important than the assassins Rush of the Howling Wind and Ananta really helped her self esteem.
But Snarl was a bore. She had heard the Rebellion planning on invading Fort Sutter, or Camp B, but instead, they had veered away from there. Snarl hadn’t been pleased.
Ice of the Melting Rock wished that Snarl would die. She wanted a new leader that would do things fairly.
She didn’t entirely agree with Shard of Ice, but perhaps the young she-cat would be better than a mess of a cat like Snarl.
“Fetch her out of the tree, Snarl wants to see her.”
The white she-cat was aware of a gruff voice, then claws scrambling up the tree. Ice glared balefully down at Moon that Shines on Water, who glared back.
“Get out, Ice of the Melting Rock,” she snapped, “Snarl is very disappointed in you.”
Sighing, Ice dangled her tail and purred, “I’m spying and doing my job,” she muttered, “I supposed you finished your job in tracking and killing the two runaways?”
Moon snarled softly, then growled, “If you don’t get down, I’m reporting your disobedience to Snarl.”
“I don’t care,” laughed Ice, “He doesn’t scare me, plus, aren’t I in enough trouble?” Her intelligent blue eyes glared down at the white she-cat below her.
Moon narrowed her eyes, “Don’t play with me, Ice of the Melting Rock, Snarl will punish you when he hears this.”
“Only if you can get me down first, I’m getting important information for Snarl right now.” The haughty she-cat purred.
“Really,” Moon muttered, “And what might that be? We get more information for our spy in the Rebellion group than from you.”
“They’re going to recruit the Clans.”
Moon’s eyes widened, “Where’d you get that baloney?”
Ice snorted, “I’ll tell that to the leader, not some low faction leader who can’t finish her job.”
Growling again, Moon finally ushered Ice of the Melting Rock off the tree, and the faction led the spy away.
Maybe not today, Shard of Ice, but tomorrow I’ll be back for more information, maybe not for Snarl, but for me.
Sun that Shines on Water was nursing her wounds from the raid on the Rebellion camp. “We need to somehow inform Shard of Ice that we’re on her side,” muttered the golden she-cat, “At this rate, we’ll die being loyal Spy Army warriors.”
Silver Mine that’s Underground glared at her, “I keep telling you we should tell her now, while she’s out instead of near that spy Snarl implanted in there.”
“Yeah, that him we’re all worried about.”
Only a few days ago, had they met Moon that Glows in Water, who they then exchanged information that they were both going to spy for the Rebellion.
“Don’t forget, we have to tell her about Moon too.”
Sun sighed, “Yeah, yeah, let’s go then, are you sure nobody else will hear us?”
Silver nodded, “Positive, come on.”
Leaf that Changes Color’s emerald green eyes widened as she stared at the two trackers that slipped away after the Rebellion patrol; she couldn’t believe what she had just heard.
She knew she should tell Snarl, or maybe even Raina right away about the two factions’ betrayals. But she couldn’t bring herself to do so.
Leaf knew what her mother would say.
“You’re always quick to tell your father about traitors, but you’re just being overly cautious! Snarl has much better things to do than listen about what you have to say. Now come on and stop whining.” Raina chastised, “I’m sick of our complaining, you need to be a good role model for all the other peasants who don’t follow directions.”
It was always the same. Raina never believed what Leaf had to say anymore. Sure, she cares about her, but the kind and sweet cat she is around Snarl isn’t there when she faces her daughter nowadays.
Leaf hated her life here in the main camp.
The camp Rushing Fire was boring, and rarely did she get chances like this to slip out anymore.
Her faction had been sent on some other mission without her, so Leaf had been told to stay in camp.
She definitely didn’t approve of that decision by Raina.
She also didn’t like how Raina was Snarl’s deputy.
She also didn’t like how everyone seemed to avoid her these days.
Life wasn’t going too well for Leaf, and all she wanted to do was meet that brown tom again and stay with him.
Shard sighed as they trekked across the arid land of StoneClan. They had met up with Sun that Shines on Water and Silver Mine that’s Underground-or they had bumped into them-and learned that the two of them and Moon that Glows in Water were now spies for the Rebellion.
She also learned that there was a spy amongst the Rebellion, and they had to be more careful.
Sighing once again as sudden yowls of alarm sounded somewhere ahead of her, Shard sat down with her patrol and waited for the StoneClan patrol to arrive.
Stonestar was at the head of the patrol, the same Stonestar that Shard knew when she was just an apprentice.
“What is the Tribe doing so far into our territory?” He growled, his gaze raking over the tired cats.
One of the warriors piped up, “That’s Stargaze, Cleverpelt, and Tornadostrike!”
“Yeah, and an IceClan warrior and a Tribe cat is on our territory.” Another growled.
Stonestar surveyed us, “I remember you,” he snarled as his gaze rested on Shard of Ice, “You slaughtered the patrol that stopped you when you and your ‘faction’ returned from killing BlizzardClan.”
Shard nodded briskly, “Can we discuss this in your camp? We’re not here to kill you or anything, we’re not part of the Spy Army anyways.”
“The what?” One of the younger cats, and apprentice probably, asked curiously, “What’s a ‘Spy Army’? Is it a Clan?”
“Shush, Breezepaw,” one of the warriors snapped, “These cats are our enemies.”
Stargaze ignored the older warrior and shouldered her way to the apprentice and quietly explained to the joyous little cat.
Stonestar obviously didn’t look pleased as he led them to the camp and growled, “If you’re not part of the Tribe, then why are you here?” His gaze glared at his three former warriors, “And why are three of my warriors with you?”
Cleverpelt stared back, “Stonestar,” she began, “We were captured when your patrol first intercepted Shard’s patrol when they were returning from a mission. We were then rescued by the aforementioned party, and we joined a Rebellion to destroy this brutal life in the Spy Army and save the Tribe from their cruel leader.”
“You did what?”
The brown tabby she-cat didn’t flinch. “I know you don’t like the sound of this, Stonestar, but we’re not going to return until our mission is over.”
Shard stepped up, “We’re here to ask for your help, Stonestar. The Rebellion is not strong enough by itself to destroy Snarl and his killing machine. We need the help from the Clans. It is in my knowledge that you and StrikeClan are one of the strongest Clans. Please, I’m begging that you help us.”
His deputy, Grayflecks, hissed, “Why should we help you, when you could just be tricking us?”
Stonestar hushed his deputy, “You don’t seem the same as you were before, Shard of Ice. I’ve heard about this ‘Rebellion’ that has taken up Snarl’s time. The Clans are no longer being raided as often, but this doesn’t give me a reason to join your war.”
Shard dipped her head, “I’m truly sorry for what happened all those moons ago, I was naïve.” She blinked, “You must understand that I don’t want the Rebellion to lose, and for all the Clans to fall.”
The brown tom blinked. “You must know how malevolent Snarl can be. He won’t stop until all these lands are his.” Shard continued, “And because of this, I hope that you will join our cause.”
Stonestar finally sighed, “Alright, but,” he gazed at the three warriors standing at Shard’s side, “I wish that you three will return to StoneClan after you’ve completed what you set out to do.”
“Of course.” The three chorused.
Shard purred to Brightsong, “I think it’s safe to say that we’re on our way to victory?”
The ginger and white she-cat rolled her eyes, “Not quite, Shard, we have a long way to go.”