|The power of four series|
|Preceded by: |
A forbidden friendship
|A warriors promise||Succeded by: |
The new blood
Birdwing sat in the middle of the clearing. The moon glittered brightly in the sky. She looked around and saw her friends Rushfoot, Goldheart and Spiketail, who got held back by his fierce mentor, Ashwhisker.
Then there were her two brothers, Iceclaw and Treeclaw, who were looking at the sky. She saw Squirrelflight sleeping in the warriors den.
Birdwing's mother had acted differently since Brambleclaw died, and Birdwing knew some cat killed him, not a fox, but she could not remember the scent that hung on Brambleclaw.
The fox scent was a diversion so they would all think that a fox did it. Goldheart looked at her and then looked at the sky.
Firestar padded out and nodded "You can speak now."
Rushfoot sighed and went into the den with Spiketail following her and Birdwing stood up and was about to follow her when she was cut off by Goldheart "Do you want to come hunting with me?"
Birdwing tipped her head to one side and mewed "Ok...."
Goldheart smiled and mewed "Let's go!"
He led the way out and they were heading toward the lake, Birdwing hunted in the undergrowth and Goldheart was hunting by the lake.
She heard a yowl and headed toward the lake. Goldheart had a she-cat pinned and was growling in her face and the she-cat spat and tried to wriggle out.
Then she heard another yowl "Waterwing!" a tabby tom had jumped out of the bushes and was attacking Goldheart and Goldheart was battering with his paws but the tom would not move.
Birdwing was about to jump in when she realized who the tom was, It was Crookedpaw. "Crookedpaw, stop!" Birdwing begged
"Its Crookedjaw, and I can't let him go or he will attack Waterwing again." Crookedjaw mewed with a snarl
Birdwing looked at him "So you became a warrior, eh?"
Crookedjaw nodded and Goldheart growled "If you let me go I won't attack Waterwing."
Crookedjaw growled "You better not." he let him go and stood beside Waterwing
Birdwing introduced herself "Hello Waterwing, I'm Birdwing," Waterwing who still had her ears back was becoming more relaxed when Goldheart said "We should get more warriors and Firestar."
Birdwing spun to face him "Why? They have not done anything!" Goldheart stammered but he then bowed and mewed in defeat "Okay Birdwing," she turned to face Waterwing again "So, What are you two doing here?"
Waterwing and Crookedjaw looked at each other and Crookedjaw mewed "Um, I'm worried about Waveheart."
Birdwing asked "Why?"
Crookedjaw looked at her territory and continued "Because he's been heading toward the lake a lot."
Waterwing cut in and mewed "And I smelled his scent with two other scents and we followed the two scents here. But one was not your's Birdwing."
Goldheart had a sheer look of horror on his face. Birdwing asked him "Whats biting you?" Goldheart shook his head and mewed "I'm going back to camp!"
Birdwing flicked her tail at him as he trotted away, Birdwing asked Crookedjaw "Are Darkpaw and Windpaw warriors?"
Crookedjaw nodded "Their names are Darkfoot and Windflight."
Birdwing looked at Shadowclan's territory and sighed. She loved Darkfoot, but she had a guess Goldheart liked her too but she does not like him.
Crookedjaw asked "Do you think that the leaders will cause a war?"
Birdwing shrugged and mewed "I don't know, I guess we will have to wait....See you later Crookedjaw...Waterwing." they nodded and ran back to their own territory.
Birdwing padded into the den and yawned. She settled beside Rushfoot who was in deep sleep with Spiketail on her other side.
Birdwing closed her eyes and went to sleep. She dreamt that she was in a large clearing with no moon but lush prey and a river. It was beautiful, but there was something about this place that gave her the creeps.
She heard a sound and jumped to see she was face to face with her reflecton. The reflection mewed calmly "Don't act all surprised, Birdwing. You should know who I am."
Birdwing tipped her head to one side and said "You must be Scourge."
Scourge nodded "Yes, Birdwing, and do you know what this place is?"
Birdwing shook her head and he mewed "This is Twilight falls, where cats that are not evil but not good or do not believe in Starclan go when they die."
Birdwing shuddered and mewed "It's nice, but creepy at the same time"
He laughed "That's kind of the point," Birdwing started to say something but was cut off by him saying "We walk paths alone and if we do meet it usually always ends ok."
Birdwing asked "Does that mean I'm going to come here when I die?"
Scourge glared at her and mewed "No.. But this is also a place where the Warriors before us go."
Birdwing asked "As in forgotten spirits?"
Scourge nodded "That and something else..Follow me."
Birdwing hesitated before following him and saw him go into a deep dark cave she froze at the entrance and she heard Scourge mew "Don't be scared Birdwing."
She nodded and padded in. She saw him place some crystals in order and he said "Cats were not warriors before," he continued "They were ruled by a different kind of warrior."
He sighed and said "Look on the wall," she looked up and gasped. There were a lot of paintings drawn by stars like constellations and there were prints that were too big too be a cats
She put her paw on one that was bigger then hers. Scourge mewed "Look behind you." she turned around and saw a huge animal.
She wanted to scream but she could not it was not a dog. Lionblaze told her a story when he went into the mountians a tribe cat told him about wolves. And one was standing right in front of her. It said in a mystical voice "Hello Birdwing. I am Rainspirit, One of the last Warrior wolves."
The wolf howled and she felt the ground shake and she woke up to see Goldheart saying "Come on, wake up, Birdwing. We have to go on patrol."
She mewed "Ok." and followed Goldheart out of the den. Ashwhisker mewed "Birdwing, Rushfoot, Spiketail and Goldheart will check the Shadowclan border."
He continued "Me, Sandstorm, Millie and Ivypool will check the Windclan border," he looked around and mewed "As for hunting patrols you can all figure that out."
He nodded and flicked his tail toward his cats on his patrols and they ran out of the camp. Birdwing just nodded to the cats on her patrol and they bound out as well.
They walked toward the Shadowclan border and soon it got all foggy and unwelcoming.
She sniffed the air and smelled the Shadowclan markers. She mewed to her patrol "You guys look down there." they nodded and she paced the border and stopped by a tree and marked it.
But she felt as if she was being watched. She looked around and stopped when she saw a pair of green eyes looking towards her, she glared at the eyes and they blinked and disappeared.
She paced back a couple steps and saw blue eyes. She sniffed the air and mewed "Darkfoot, don't scare me like that" he mewed in amusement and asked "Why are you afraid of this territory Birdwing?"
She shuddered and answered "Because of all the fog around here!"
Darkfoot looked on and mewed "Looks can trick you, Birdwing."
She looked at him and asked "Did you know the cat that was staring at me from another bush?"
Darkfoot answered her question with another question "Didn't you?"
She gazed at him for a second and shrugged "I could not tell cause of the fog"
He mewed "I think you should be getting back to your clanmates, Birdwing." she nodded and bounded away from him to meet up with her clanmates.
Birdwing yawned slowly and saw Fogkit and Sunkit tackling each other and Fogkit growled "Take this, Shadowclan warrior!" Sunkit giggled and yelled "You will never beat me, Fogstar!"
Birdwing watched in amusement and Fogkit saw her and sneaked up to her. She put her head on her paws and watched him carefully. He then let out a battle squeak and jumped on her.
She felt a heavy weight land on her head and she pawed him off carefully and mewed with mock annoyance "Hey, can't you leave a warrior to rest?"
Fogkit mewed excitedly "I'm going to be an apprentice soon!" he bounced around until she put her paw on his head and he mewed "Hey!"
Birdwing growled playfully and asked "Can't you cause trouble somewhere else?"
Fogkit mewed "Where's the fun in that?"
Birdwing sighed and mewed "I guess you have a point."
Fogkit started to brag "Hah! I'm right you're wrong! A warrior is wrong!"
"Go wait for the apprentice ceremony before I attack you." She growled playfully.
Fogkit mewed in mock distress "Oh no, a warrior is after me!"
He ran out the den and into his sister and Moonkit. She watched them and Firestar called her "Birdwing, Can I talk to you?"
Birdwing nodded "Of course Firestar. What is it?"
Firestar twitched his tail, indicating for her to follow him into the leader's den and she sat down on the soft ground and said "What is it Firestar?"
Firestar mewed "Birdwing, I am about to trust you with a job," Birdwing perked her ears up but stayed silent. Firestar continued "I am giving you an apprentice."
Birdwing looked at him and asked "Who?"
He mewed "Fogkit..I'm giving you Fogkit."
Birdwing bowed "Yes Firestar." she padded out the den and went into the warriors den and sat down, waiting for Firestar to call the ceremony to a start.
She heard him yowl "Let all those cats old enough to catch their own prey join here beneath the highrock for a clan meeting!" she padded out and sat beside Cloudtail and Rushfoot.
Everyone slowly came out and sat down. Fogkit, Sunkit and Moonkit were last. They sat down in front of Firestar and he yowled "It is time to make new apprentices. Fogkit, Sunkit and Moonkit, from this moment on until you recieve your warrior names you will be Fogpaw, Sunpaw and Moonpaw!"
Everyone cheered and Firestar said "Moonpaw, your mentor will be Iceclaw!" Moonpaw headed over to Iceclaw and touched noses with him.
Firestar continued "Sunpaw, your mentor will be Rushfoot!" Sunpaw also padded up to her mentor and touched noses.
And finally Firestar mewed "Fogpaw, your mentor will be Birdwing!" Fogpaw ran toward her and automatically touched noses with her and Firestar jumped off the high rock and went to talk to Ashwhisker.
She just stared at Ashwhisker, wondering how far would he go to get what he wanted. She was broken out of her staring by Fogpaw, who poked her mewing "Come on. I want to learn the territory!"
Birdwing sighed and said "Let's go," she bounded out of the camp with Fogpaw behind her. She froze at the Shadowclan border and sniffed the air and Fogpaw mewed "It's creepy."
Birdwing looked at him and stared into the territory and thought, What does Darkfoot see in his territory? She looked at the lake and mewed "Come on," she heard a "Psst." but it was not Fogpaw, she knew who it was.
She looked back and nodded and continued down the lake. Fogpaw was staring at the lake and his reflection and he sqeuaked "Cool!"
She stared across the lake to Riverclan territory. She said "Come on, Fogpaw." and she led him toward Windclan territory and stopped. Fogpaw stopped beside her and stared into the moorland.
Birdwing heard a noise and said "Fogpaw get behind me now!" Fogpaw nodded and 4 warriors leaped out of the heather and Birdwing did not have time to see who was who.
A brown she cat leaped on her and hissed "What do you want, Thunderclan?!" Birdwing saw Fogpaw watch with a look of horror on his face.
Birdwing pushed her legs on the she cat then the rest of the warriors joined the brown she cat and surrounded her and she looked at all of the patrol.
One of them was Heartshine, the fierce Windclan warrior. Another was Breezepelt who she did not know very well. The other one was Onestar. The last one is what made her stop dead cold. It was Windflight, who seemed more stronger and lithe from the last time Birdwing saw her.
Birdwing mewed cooly "I was showing my apprentice the territory."
Windflight got a flash of horror on her face when she realized who was talking but Onestar mewed "Thunderclan can't be trusted."
Breezepelt added "Isn't that right? I mean you can't be trusted even more than Rogues!"
Birdwing bristled and Windflight looked behind the patrol then winked at Birdwing and Windflight unsheathed her claws and nodded.
Birdwing smelled Riverclan and Shadowclan mixed together she ducked when she saw two pelts jump into the patrol and start attacking the Windclan warriors
Windflight whispered "Attack me..."
Birdwing asked "Why?
But she leaped onto Windflight and scratched her. Windflight winked at her and let out a yowl and Onestar yowled under Crookedjaw's heavy weight
"Windclan retreat!" and Crookedjaw let him go and Darkfoot let go of Breezepelt and the Windclan warriors ran off.
Crookedjaw and Darkfoot just looked at her before running off to their own territories. Birdwing heard a squeak and realised Fogpaw was still there.
She padded back to the camp and Fogpaw asked "Can we learn battle training tomorrow?" Birdwing nodded and mewed "Good idea Fogpaw. Go get some rest."
Fogpaw nodded and ran toward the apprentices den. She saw Iceclaw with Sunpaw, showing her a hunting crouch and Birdwing tipped her head thinking, Iceclaw's apprentice is Moonpaw. But why is Iceclaw teaching Sunpaw something that she should learn from her mentor?
She shook her head and padded into the warriors den and curled up. She dreamed she was in a clearing and she saw a mouse. She pounced on it and ate it but she smelled a sour tang that made her uncomfortable.
The clearing was soon filled with blood she ran away but she heard a voice. Danger is closer then you think, Birdwing, Beware.
She woke up with everyone sleeping and she stood up and walked out of the camp toward the Shadowclan border. She froze at the edge and saw Darkfoot and he crept toward her and he said "You seem worried about something."
She nodded and said "I had a dream," Darkfoot listened and she continued "A voice said "Danger is closer then you think, Birdwing, Beware." What do you think it means?"
She asked and Darkfoot mewed "I don't know, but follow me." she nodded and they headed into his territory. He flicked his tail over her eyes and led her to an open space and he took his tail off her eyes and she was shocked at what she saw.
She always thought that Shadowclan territory was uncomforting but this clearing she was in had sparkling mist and glowing mushrooms and fireflies.
She gasped and thought Wow, I did not know Shadowclan territory could be so beautiful! she stared in awe at the clearing and Darkfoot said "I usually come here when I don't feel right about something."
He hesitated and continued "Shadowclan don't usually use this place and Blackstar told me if he finds a Thunderclan cat on it he does not care."
Birdwing looked at him and asked "So its neutral territory between our clans?"
Darkfoot nodded "Yes. Firestar was talking to Blackstar about it and they both agreed that their cats can come here." Birdwing smelled the clearing.
It was pleasant smell like prey. She looked at the moon to see it was going down and she said "Sorry Darkfoot, but I have to go/"
He just bowed his head and Birdwing ran to her territory. She jumped over a fallen log and ran into something she got back her sense and realized who it was.
It was Goldheart. She bristled and asked "Did you follow me?!"
Goldheart mewed flatly "Yes, because I saw that you were not in the warriors den so I tracked you."
Birdwing looked at him and growled "You don't have to worry about me, you know."
Goldheart ignored her and said "I saw you with that Shadowclan cat," he had a glint in his eyes "You know the warrior code, Birdwing."
Birdwing flicked her tail and said "Yeah, I do," Goldheart got an angry look in his eyes and was about to continue when Birdwing cut him off "Listen, Goldheart. I know you like me, but I don't like you, ok? I just want to be friends."
Goldheart stayed silent so she continued "Promise me that you won't tell anyone?"
She heard a very faint "I promise" from a bush but Goldheart mewed "Ok, I will uphold your Warriors promise" he flicked his tail and headed off toward camp.
She followed him slowly and realized there was another cat there but she did not know who. She went into the warriors den and slept the rest off the night. When she woke up she saw Fogpaw a little ways from the den talking to Sunpaw and she padded out towards Fogpaw and said "Come on. I'm going to teach you some moves!"
He nodded to Sunpaw and followed her. She froze in the training hollow and turned.
Fogpaw seemed distracted by something so Birdwing took the chance to teach him Lesson number 1. Never turn your back on your enemy.
She jumped towards him and bowled him over and he squeaked and ypwled "Hey!" but she said "Do I have your attention now?" he nodded and attacked her clumsily.
She dodged the attack easily and pushed him and mewed "Come on Fogpaw. Use something I don't expect!" Fogpaw stared at her and looked up and down and braced himself.
He jumped. So did Birdwing. To her surprise he landed under her and when she landed he pushed his legs up and she slid to the other end of the clearing.
She panted and said "Well done...But now it's my turn!" Fogpaw nodded and stared at her she made her move and he ducked but she jumped and did a twist over him and pinned him down saying "Watch where your enemy is going Fogpaw!"
Fogpaw nodded and watched as she attacked him. He dodged and stopped. Birdwing nodded and her and Fogpaw went back to camp.
Birdwing shuddered in the cold night as she led the evening patrol. She yawned slowly and continued on. Rushfoot mewed "It's too quiet."
Birdwing looked at her and mewed "Yeah. Somethings not right.." she sniffed the air but nothing hit her and she asked Spiketail "Do you smell anything?"
Spiketail sniffed and mewed "No, but something is not right." Birdwing stared into the darkness, waiting for something to jump out at them.
Ashwhisker mewed "Hmm, I smell faint Shadowclan scent, but that's because we are by the border."
Rushfoot looked at him and mewed suspiciously "You seem calm."
Ashwhisker retorted "Why wouldn't I be? This is our territory."
Birdwing whispered to him "That does not exactly mean it's safe."
Ashwhisker growled as he sniffed the air. He yowled "Attack!" Strange cats came hopping out of the bushes and a heavy built tom leaped on her.
To his surprise she flopped on her belly and kicked him with her hind legs and she heard Rushfoot mew to her "Get out of here, Birdwing!"
Birdwing ran toward the lake but she was pursued by the tom. He leaped on her but she was too tired to fight. She flailed her paws and managed to score her claws on his muzzle.
But soon the world was starting to disappear. She saw familier shapes jump out of the bushes. The world went black for Birdwing.
She dreamed she was in a small clearing and she saw Brambleclaw. She jumped up and asked "Am I dead?" Brambleclaw let out a laugh and mewed "No Birdwing, Starclan has decided to heal you while Darkfoot and Waterwing hold the attackers off."
Birdwing mewed surprised "But Waterwing never leaves Crookedjaw alone!" Brambleclaw didn't answer Birdwing's question but said "Time to wake up, Birdwing."
She heard another voice and opened her eyes. She was not in Thunderclan since their was no scents. She looked up and saw Waterwing staring down at her.
She mewed "About time. Before we found you Crookedjaw was worried about something then he fainted right in front of us!"
Birdwing leaped up but sat down again and asked "Is he alright?"
Waterwing nodded "Yes, he is now."
Birdwing nodded and mewed "Ok, I need to go back."
Waterwing looked at her sadly and said "Willowshine says you need to rest."
Birdwing mewed desperatly "What about my friends?" Waterwing sat down and said "They are alive. I know that much, but those rogues were big enough to be a group."
Birdwing remembered that Ashwhisker yowled attack and that's when the rogues came out and she gasped and asked Waterwing "Can I go? Ashwhisker is a traitor. He wants to kill Firestar"
Waterwing widened her eyes and said "Just like Tigerstar......Of course me and Crookedjaw will go with you," Crookedjaw padded in and sat beside Waterwing and asked "Do you want to go now?"
Birdwing nodded and said "We can't wait. Thunderclan is in danger!"
Mistystar came in and said "Birdwing, if you go back there and Ashwhisker succeeds it won't be your clan anymore," Birdwing bent her head as Mistystar continued "If you fail either Riverclan or Shadowclan will welcome you."
Birdwing pricked her ears and asked "Shadowclan?"
Mistystar nodded and mewed "I was talking to Blackstar, he said that Ashwhisker was seen talking to some of his cats."
Birdwing nodded and mewed "Okay, let's go then."
She rushed out of the den with Crookedjaw and Waterwing beside her and she heard Mistystar yell after them, "May Starclan light your path!"
Birdwing kept within two fox lengths of the lake. She stopped at the edge of her territory when a voice said behind them "What are you doing?" They turned to see Windflight
Birdwing explained what was going on and Windflight gasped "Oh dear! Firestar is in trouble. I will come with you!"
As they continued they heard a wail and they snuck toward the hollow. Birdwing looked down and saw Firestar dead and Ashwhisker fighting off one of the rogues. It ran away and the clan gathered. Birdwing looked at her friends and said "Wait here!"
They nod and continue to stare at the scene. Birdwing headed toward the entrance of the camp she padded in and Rushfoot exclaimed "Birdwing's back!"
Cats crowded around her and Fogpaw smiled at her and asked "Can we continue training?"
Birdwing yowled "Please let me speak!"
Everyone quieted down and stared at Birdwing and she mewed "I know who killed Brambleclaw!"
Goldheart mewed in a flat voice "Yeah, the foxes."
Birdwing spat at him "Yeah, but foxes don't randomly appear!" Goldheart looked down at his paws and she looked at Ashwhisker and snarled "Traitor!"
Cats gasped and Goldheart mewed "You aren't thinking Birdwing! Ashwhisker saved us," Birdwing growled and said "That's what you think, But he will starve you. Just watch."
Rushfoot asked "Where are you going to go?"
Birdwing looked at her and mewed "I don't know... But this is not going to be Thunderclan anymore."
She padded out of the den and heard "Wait, Birdwing!"
She turned to see Fogpaw and she mewed "Fogpaw, if you leave Thunderclan, Sunpaw will be upset."
Fogpaw shook his head and mewed firmly "I'm coming with you Birdwing, your my mentor and no one else can be you." She nodded, defeated and met up with her friends and they headed home.
Birdwing woke up in the Riverclan warriors den.
Waterwing was beside her sleeping. She padded out of the den and sat in the middle of the clearing and stared up at the stars.
She thought This is weird having no trees, but it's so comforting to see the stars she heard a voice "Can't sleep Birdwing?"
She saw Mistystar pad up to her and sit beside her and Birdwing asked "Will Riverclan ever accept me and Fogpaw? We are from a different clan you know, And I was supposed to be destined to lead Thunderclan."
Mistystar mewed softly "Birdwing, my father Oakheart told me something before he died," Birdwing asked "What was the that?" Mistystar looked at the stars and said "He told me a strong cat looks after himself but a stronger cat looks out for others."
Birdwing looked at the stars thinking, Will I ever go home to the True Thunderclan? She bowed to Mistystar and went back into the warriors den.
She woke up to very pale sunlight and she heard Reedwhisker say "Everyone get up!" she yawned and rose to her paws Reedwhisker gathered the cats who were mentors.
She saw Crookedjaw and an apprentice with Reedwhisker also and Reedwhisker looked at her and asked "Crookedjaw and Birchpaw. Will you show Birdwing and Fogpaw the territory? They will be staying with us" Birchpaw nodded, enthusastic, and mewed excitedly to Fogpaw "Come on, let's go"
Birchpaw and Fogpaw ran away from their mentors and Crookedjaw shouted after them, "Hey, wait!" Birdwing let out a laugh before padding after her apprentice with Crookedjaw trying to catch up to them.
She stopped at the Windclan border and saw a patrol made of Heathertail, Windflight and Haretail. Windflight said "Oh, thank Starclan I found you Birdwing! There's trouble in Thunderclan!"
Birdwing widened her eyes and asked "What's wrong?"
Windflight looked at her "Ashstar is starving Thunderclan!"
Birdwing stared at her friend and mewed "Well, I will see them at the gathering tonight." Mistystar's words stuck with her. A strong cat looks after themselves but a stronger cat looks after others.
Birdwing nodded to Windflight and Crookedjaw said "Come on. We need to tell Mistystar."
Birdwing nodded and followed after him she went into camp and saw Mistystar, she asked "Well?"
Crookedjaw mewed "We met a Windclan patrol and Windflight said something interesting."
Mistystar looked at him "What did she say?"
Crookedjaw looked around then mewed "Windflight said that Thunderclan was being starved to death."
Mistystar mewed questioningly "But she's a Windclan cat why would she-"
Crookedjaw interuppted her "Mistystar, Windflight is Birdwing's friend. She would not lie."
Mistystar dipped her head and Waveheart growled "Well, what are we waiting for?"
Birdwing looked at Waveheart and mewed "You all need to stay out of this until I'm sure I can't do it alone." Waveheart turned his back pointedly on Birdwing.
Birdwing shook her head and said "Listen, I'm coming to the gathering," Mistystar bowed her head and Fogpaw asked "Can I come, Birdwing?"
Birdwing looked at her apprentice and mewed "Ok, but stay close to me!" Fogpaw nodded and Mistystar gathered the chosen the cats. She saw Crookedjaw and his eyes were a very eerie pale blue.
Birdwing froze then asked "Crookedjaw?" Crookedjaw looked like he was receiving a Starclan omen. Birdwing looked around and saw that everyone looked like that.
She said "I must be day dreaming," She closed her eyes and opened them and saw everyone staring at her.
She saw Crookedjaw sitting down and staring at his paws.
Birdwing mewed to everyone "What are we waiting for?"
Everyone nodded and ran toward the island she leaped on to the log and ran across and ran into a very scrawny apprentice and the she cat squeaked.
She grumbled "Sorry." but realized Hey, that's Moonpaw. Birdwing said "I'm sorry Moonpaw. Are you ok?" Moonpaw stood up and Birdwing stared at her and said "Have you been eating?"
Moonpaw hissed "It's none of your business!" Moonpaw stalked away and the Riverclan cats stared after the apprentice and continued into the middle.
Mistystar jumped up with the other three leaders and mewed "Let the gathering begin!"
Birdwing sat beside Crookedjaw and stared up at Ashstar and growled. She hissed "He does not deserve to be up there."
Crookedjaw looked at her and said "I know he killed Firestar, but the clan does not know that," Birdwing looked at her friend gratefully and saw Onestar stand up and start his news "All is well in Windclan."
Waterwing twitched her whiskers and whispered to them "That was quick. Something tells me he is not telling everything."
Waveheart slapped his tail onto her back and whispered back "You think he would he wants to show he is strong." Birdwing saw Onestar back up for Blackstar to anounce his news.
Birdwing stared up at him as he said "Shadowclan has no important news," Birdwing saw him glance in Ashstar's direction and he continued "We have plenty of prey."
This time it was Waveheart's turn to be surprised and he whispered "Woah. It's not like Blackstar to not complain!"
Waterwing looked at Blackstar and whispered again "Listen, something's drawing the clans apart. I mean Birdwing was practically left alone."
Waveheart looked at Birdwing and shrugged "I guess." Birdwing ignored the glare Waveheart gave her and watched Ashstar intently as he started on his report "Thunderclan has smelled Riverclan near the lake border."
Riverclan cats started to hiss and she saw them shuffle toward her.
Ashstar ignored the hisses and continued "They also took one of our warriors." Birdwing heard Crookedjaw growl and she laid her tail on him to calm him down.
Ashstar twitched his whiskers and Birdwing thought, This is all part of your plan. Ashstar soon yowled "If Riverclan don't bring Birdwing back they will feel our claws!"
His gaze rested on Crookedjaw and Crookedjaw snarled. Mistystar mewed calmly but fiercely "She left because she thought you were not the true Thunderclan leader." Ashstar hissed in rage as his eyes met Birdwing's.
She started to back up as Ashstar crept off the tree and toward her, hissing as he went. Birdwing heard him say "Is this true? Do you doubt my leadership?"
Birdwing met his gaze and said "Yes. It's true Ashstar. You don't deserve your leadership," she was aware she had every cats attention and she continued "You killed cats of your own clan, hoping Firestar would choose you as deputy. You killed Brambleclaw....kind of like Tigerstar."
Ashstar unsheathed his claws as she continued "Then you killed Firestar as soon you sent most of the warriors were out of camp.....Again kind of like Tigerstar."
Ashstar yowled "I have had enough of this. You're finished, Birdwing!"
He leapt into the air, aiming for Birdwing's neck, teeth ready and claws unsheathed. Birdwing then saw a flash of pale tabby fur taking the hit that was supposed to be for her.
She saw Ashstar jump back in surprise and said "This is not over Birdwing....Come Thunderclan!" Moonpaw and the rest of Thunderclan were staring at the heap of fur that was scarcly breathing and Birdwing saw who saved her life.
Waterwing whispered "No...."
Waveheart looked surprised and mewed shocked "I can't believe it."
Birdwing saw Ashstar twitch his whiskers before turning around. Birdwing looked at the tabby fur and looked up again and Waterwing growled and leaped at Ashstar.
Ashstar jumped out of her way but she turned like a speeding monster and attacked Ashstar. He was caught off guard as Waterwing bit into his throat.
Before she could go any deeper Mistystar and Birdwing pulled her off of him. Ashstar stood up and mewed to Mistystar "Learn to control your warrior." he sped off the island with Thunderclan behind him.
Blackstar said to Mistystar "What are you going to do now?"
Mistystar looked at him and mewed "I don't know."
Blackstar and Onestar looked at each other and slowly got off the island. Birdwing heard Waterwing mew worried "Crookedjaw, are you alright?"
When he didn't answer Birdwing didn't feel so good and she mewed "Waterwing?" she turned around and Birdwing slipped into uncounciousness.
She dreamed she was in a small cavern and Birdwing asked "Where am I?"
She heard Firestar "A cave, Birdwing."
Birdwing twitched her whiskers and mewed "I can see that." she saw a shape and she mewed questionaly "Crookedjaw?" he looked up and nodded and mewed "I have been sitting here for a while."
Birdwing looked around the cave and asked "Do you remember anything?" Crookedjaw got a distant look in his eyes and mewed "I remember Ashstar leaping at you," he hesitated before continuing "I leaped in front of you. That's it."
Birdwing nodded and asked "Are you alright?"
Crookedjaw nodded "Yes, I am."
Birdwing asked "Should we wake up?"
Crookedjaw looked at her and said "Well, unless you want cats to stare at you then no."
Birdwing asked "Why would they stare at us?"
Crookedjaw flicked his tail toward a crystal pool and Birdwing saw herself being carried to the Riverclan camp.
A sudden feeling of rush came over and mewed playfully "To bad! We are going anyways!" She pushed Crookedjaw into the pool and she jumped in.
She woke up in the medicine cat den with Willowshine staring at her.
Birdwing grumbled "That's creepy. Can you please not do that?"
Willowshine blinked and murmured "Sorry!" Birdwing looked at her and asked "What's wrong Willowshine?" Willowshine did not answer, so Birdwing asked again "What's wrong?"
Willowshine blinked and mewed "I recieved a eerie omen and it's about your brother."
Birdwing looked at her and asked "Which one?"
Willowshine mewed flatly "How am I supposed to know? I don't know them."
Birdwing opened her mouth but Willowshine said "A Starclan cat came to me, He looked like Brambleclaw, and he said "The Ice will fall for the moon's mist but joins the Stars"
Birdwing flicked her ear and whispered "Ice...." she jumped up and yelled "I know who he's talking about!"
Willowshine asked "What?"
Birdwing mewed "Iceclaw is falling in love with Moonpaw."
Willowshine looked over at Crookedjaw and mewed in a worried voice "He has not woken up yet."
Birdwing looked at her friend and mewed to Willowshine "I know what I need to do."
Willowshines eyes twinkled and mewed "Your going to face Ashstar."
Birdwing nodded and mewed "Tell Mistystar that I have left to save my clan."
Willowshine nodded as Birdwing creeped out of the camp and toward Shadowclan territory. She stopped on the edge and sighed.
She stepped into Shadowclan territory and padded through the dense undergrowth. She heard Blackstar "Well, hello, Birdwing."
Birdwing saw him step out with a whole throng of cats and Birdwing flicked her tail uneasily. Birdwing stammered but Blackstar mewed calmly "Don't worry. You want to attack Ashstar, yes?"
Birdwing nodded and Blackstar flicked his tail toward Darkfoot and mewed "Ashstar has killed Rowanclaw and Onestar."
Blackstar continued "Darkfoot is the new deputy of Shadowclan." the Shadowclan cats cheered.
Blackstar mewed "Watch your step, Birdwing, because Ashstar has become more dangerous when you last saw him."
Birdwing tipped her head and mewed "No doubt when I go back he's going to do something."
Blackstar nodded and let Birdwing through and she heard Darkfoot whisper "Be careful, Birdwing."
Birdwing looked at him and then continued on to her territory. She sniffed and sickness overcome her. She shuddered and peeked into the camp.
Cats were going around putting prey on the pile and going to their dens. Birdwing saw Iceclaw and whispered "Iceclaw.."
Iceclaw jumped at the tiny sound and looked in her direction. He saw her and headed over. Birdiwng asked "Are you okay?"
Iceclaw snapped "No, I'm not ok! No one's ok! Since you left cats have grown hungry!"
Birdwing sniffed and asked "How? It's in the middle of Greenleaf."
Iceclaw sighed "Ashstar has been taking all the prey. I know he has, even though he let's the queens and the strong warriors take some prey."
Iceclaw looked down "Treeclaw has disappeared."
Birdwing sniffed "Oh no!"
Iceclaw slapped his tail over her mouth and he mewed "Ashstar said if you come back you can stay."
Iceclaw nodded and flicked his tail and Birdwing followed him. Ashstar waited for her and said "Welcome back, Birdwing!" he said calmly but other cats were staring at her with shock. Ashstar said "I made you my deputy a few days ago cause I believed you would come back."
Birdwing nodded at Ashstar and he mewed "But I have been having a problem with a rogue."
Birdwing rolled her eyes and mewed "And you want me to take care of it."
Ashstar nodded and mewed "You better go now!"
Birdwing nodded and left the camp. She ran away from the camp in a hurry when she bumped into a tom and he mewed, and his pelt was very familiar.
"What are you doing here?"
Birdwing jumped at the harsh tone and growled "Who are you?"
He mewed in cold amusement "I am Finsternes young cat!"
Birdwing tipped her head "Finsternes?"
Finsternes drew an intake of breath and mewed "Where are my manners! I will repeat that in a cat speak you will understand."
He repeated "I am Eclipse young cat."
Birdwing mewed "Oh."
She froze and asked "What type of cat speak do you speak?"
He laughed again "Well I speak somewhat normal cat speak."
Birdwing mewed with amusement "I can see that." Eclipse twitched his ear,
He mewed "I learned some words from cats that came from a distant land, they took care of me."
Birdwing tipped her head and Eclipse let out a frustrated meow "It means I know words you don't!"
When Birdwing did not answer he mewed flatly "My speach my change from time to time."
Birdwing nodded slowly "Ok but can you please leave my clan-"
He cut her off "Wait, wait you haven't told me your name yet!"
Birdwing grew silent then mewed "My name is Birdwing."
Eclipse looked confused "Birdwing?"
Birdwing nodded and he asked "You are a Kreiger Katze?"
Birdwing let out a groan and Eclipse looked upset and Birdwing quickly mewed "Sorry, I dont understand!"
Eclipse growled "No cats understand!" he continued "I said, you are a warrior cat?"
Birdwing nodded "Sorry, Eclipse."
Eclipse then snarled "I have had enough torture from my House folk I dont need more from you!" he stalked off and Birdwing mewed "Wait!"
But he kept walking but stopped "Fine I will stay, Sorry for my cat-speak changing, I got that living from the distant cats."
Birdwing nodded and listened as he looked at the sky and mewed "Actually it's getting late, see." he flicked his tail toward the sky and mewed "Go home for now Birdwing and I would practice that ok?"
Birdwing nodded and ran off back to report to Ashstar. She froze for a secend and brought down a magpie then picked it up and went back to Eclipse she mewed "Take this, I sense dark times ahead for both of us."
Eclispe nodded slowly and grabbed the Magpie then disappeared into the bushes. She turned away and went back to camp. She froze at Ashstars den and asked "Ashstar?"
She heard Ashstar "Yes Birdwing? Did you find the rogue?"
Birdwing sniffed and thought What would happen if I told Ashstar about Eclipse?
She decided not to tell him and mewed "No, the scent was not fresh, it must have been a passer by."
Ashstar looked on "Strange, I swear the scent was fresh."
Birdwing shrugged "Whoever it was the cats gone now."
Ashstar shrugged "Well we should still be cautious, Tell all patrols to look out for a yellow golden tom will you?"
She bowed "Yes Ashstar." she stepped out of the den and went to the warriors den where her apprentice Fogheart was.
He was asleep beside Sunwing and Moonmist. She froze as some other warriors came into the den and ignored her. She thought I'm deputy they have to listen to me right?
She shrugged and thought about Crookedjaw.
Is he going to be alright? She saw Rushfoot and Spikeclaw slowly come toward her and lay down on either sides of her.
She heard Rushfoot whisper "Don't worry Birdwing! Me and Spiketail are your friends! And you leaving for a while wont change anything."
Birdwing nodded and slowly went to sleep. She dreamed she was on the ground bleeding her life out. She groaned as she saw Brambleclaw and asked "What does this mean?"
Brambleclaw looked at his daughter sadly and mewed "I'm about to show you a vision of your passing." Birdwing nodded as she was obviously in a clearing with cats looking at her as a battle raged.
She saw two cats crowded beside each other as the ginger she act started to wail and the White tom comforted her.
She saw the other three staring at her with shock and worry. She then heard all of them say in union "Good bye Birdstar." Soon she woke up panting and ran out of the den.
She froze right in the Medicine cat den then let out a retch. Cherryflower backed up and said "Birdwing what?" Birdwing gasped for air and said "Cherryflower...I just saw my death/"
Cherryflower twitched her ear and said "Birdwing lately I have recieved dreams of you defeating Ashstar and becoming leader."
Birdwing thought for a moment "That makes sense cause my friends mewed "Bye Birdstar.""
Cherryflower shrugged "Oh well... Now leave me in peace I need to clean up your mess!"
Birdwing bowed and left the den. It was Sun high and Fogheart padded up too her "Hi deputy!"
Birdwing was surprised to hear no scorn in her old apprentices mew as he continued "What would you like me to do?"
Birdwing twitched and mewed "Fogheart, Can you take Rushfoot and Iceclaw on a border patrol?" Fogheart nodded then bounded off to find Rushfoot and Iceclaw.
She saw Moonmist and mewed "Moonmist take a hunting patrol of whoever you wish." Moonmist nodded then bounded toward the warriors den.
Birdwing twitched her whiskers and mewed "I could get used to this."
As Birdwing waited for the evening patrol she saw Ashstar come up to her "Birdwing, I am having a meeting with my senior warriors, You come too."
Birdwing nodded and slowly followed Ashstar to his den. Moleheart, Goldheart, and Iceclaw were there whispering urgently and quickly.
Birdwing sat beside them and they stopped. Iceclaw asked Ashstar "What is this about, Ashstar?"
Ashstar flicked his tail "That rogue."
Birdwing twitched her ears as Ashstar continued "He threatens us by taking our food, so you three are going out to kill him."
Birdwing thought I can't let Ashstar get to Eclispe, Because for some reason he will be important later. Birdwing piped up "I don't know, Ashstar. Maybe we should leave this for another day?"
Ashstar twitched "Birdwing, do as your told. Now go!" Birdwing led Iceclaw and Goldheart out of the den and out to the forest. She froze at the patch where she met Eclipse.
She smelled the air but detected no scent. But Iceclaw had found his scent and he said, "Hey, he has been here recently."
Birdwing saw blue eyes glint from the trees above then wink. She looked at Goldheart and Iceclaw who were sniffing around.
She winked back and went to sit on the edge of the clearing. She licked her paw casually as the two toms talked.
Then Iceclaw said "Hey, you!" She looked up and Eclipse was standing a few fox lengths across from Iceclaw and Goldheart.
He mewed cooly "Well hello. Who are you?"
Goldheart snarled "I am Goldheart and this is Iceclaw. Ashstar wants you to leave our territory!"
Eclipse was about to answer when Iceclaw charged.
Birdwing flinched expecting Eclipse to be stunned, but her fear turned into surprise when Eclipse ran, jumped, and twisted over Iceclaw.
He landed softly onto the dust while Iceclaw ran into the bush. Goldheart growled but slowly stalked toward Eclipse weaving in and out.
Birdwing saw Iceclaw creep toward him and then pounce. Eclipse ducked and Iceclaw ended up landing on Goldheart.
The two toms let out screeches of fury towards each other and started attacking each other. Eclipse slowly headed towards Birdwing.
He nodded and disappeared into the bushes. Birdwing could not help but laugh and mew "Wow, I can't even leave you two alone!"
Iceclaw and Goldheart stopped and stammered but Birdwing held up her tail "We might as well leave!" They both nodded and headed towards camp.
As they went to report to Ashstar, Birdwing went toward Fogheart and said, "Hey!" He flicked his tail and munched on the vole quietly. Birdwing flicked her ears as Ashstar called a clan meeting.
Ashstar yowled "Let all cats old enough to catch their own prey join here beneath the Highledge for a clan meeting!" Birdwing was at the foot of the highrock as the other warriors made a semi circle around the Highledge.
She froze when he said "I have great news!" his whiskers twitching.
Birdwing knew that can't be good.
He yowled "After Birdwing's patrol I sent out another to flank the rogue."
Goldheart, shocked, asked "Did they get him?" Ashstar was silent for a second then twitched his tail and then Moonmist and Moleheart came out with the rogue.
Birdwing realized it was Eclipse. She was about to yowl and pounce on her brother but Fogheart slapped his tail to her mouth and twitched his whiskers.
She relaxed and thought How bad could it be? It's not like he's going to kill him. He's not that ruthless. Birdwing thought Is he?
She watched intently as Ashstar continued "Yes, We have finally caught the rogue!"
He mewed "Rogue, do you have anything to say?"
When Eclipse just looked at him and hissed he flicked his tail and hissed "You don't scare me, rogue." Birdwing looked at him suspicous and realized there was a tiny spark of fear.
He continued "I will try this once more, Do you have anything to say?"
Eclipse looked up again and mewed "Oh, I have stuff to say, just not to you!"
Ashstar growled and asked "You do realize you are messing with a clan leader here?"
Eclipse unsheathed his claws and said "You are no leader!"
Ashstar bristled and mewed "Explain how I am leading a clan then!"
Eclispe was silent for a few seconds than mewed "You lied to get your way up to power!"
Ashstar narrowed his eyes and hissed "I don't lie!" Eclispe was about to say something but Ashstar spat "For that it will cost you your life!"
Ashstar jumped of the ledge and with Eclispe being held down, Birdwing knew there was no way that Eclipse could get away from Ashstar.
She did something very risky. She jumped in front of Ashstar and clawed his muzzle he snarled and said "About time, Birdwing. I was starting to wonder when you would save him!"
Birdwing growled and stood protectively infront of Eclipse while Iceclaw and Moleheart backed away slowly. She saw Eclipse fall to the ground. She thought, He is really weak.
She continued to growl at Ashstar and said "No, you are the traitor here!" everyone looked at Ashstar then back. Birdwing snarled "Tell them everything!"
Ashstar shrugged and mewed "What difference is it going to make? It's not going to change anything."
Birdwing saw Eclipse stand up and growl "If you have to face her....you have to face me too!"
Birdwing looked at Eclipse with admiration and was shocked when Fogheart came up and said "Me too. You want to face Birdwing, it's like a threat to me."
Iceclaw stood to the other side of Birdwing "You attack my sister and I'll kill you!" he growled, his claws unsheathing.
Rushfoot and Spiketail stood behind Birdwing, yowling in their agreement, and the rest of the clan started to yowl Birdwings name, padding behind her, glaring at Ashstar.
He was bristling as Ashstar let out a laugh and said "Oh, I'm not alone, am I?" He yowled and strange cats came through the barrier and Thunderclan backed up slowly to let the front 4 cats take care of the rogues.
Eclipse looked at the crowd and gasped "Amanda?" A she-cat that looked like Eclipse was staring at him with shock and ran up to him and licked him.
Ashstar sneered "So who's side are you on?"
Amanda mewed "I don't know anymore. Come on Hannah!" a pretty pale yellow she-cat strode out and mewed "Hmm, You know what? This was wrong."
She strode over to stand beside Birdwing and growled "Do you really want to fight a united force?"
Ashstar did not answer instead he yowled "Attack!"
The rogues started to pile on the Thunderclan cats Ashstar pinned Birdwing and started slashing her. She yowled in her mind, Crookedjaw, HELP! She hoped he heard her cause more rogues were coming.
Crookedjaw jerked awake after Birdwings piercing scream. Waterwing was awake beside him and asked "Are you ok?" Crookedjaw mewed "She-she's in trouble!"
Waterwing purred "Go tell Mistystar. She will believe you." Crookedjaw nodded and stood up. He padded out of the den and he could still hear Birdwing's piercing scream.
He stopped at Mistystar's den and asked, "Mistystar?"
Mistystar's blue eyes shone through the darkness and asked "Yes, Crookedjaw?"
He sighed and mewed "I think Thunderclan is in trouble!"
Mistystar nodded "I share your concern. I heard a high pitched wail."
Crookedjaw widened his eyes and asked, "So are you going to send me with some warriors?"
Mistystar nodded and mewed "Even better than some warriors, I'm coming with you!"
Crookedjaw shook his head "But, Mistystar, You are on your last life!"
Mistystar mewed bravely "Then I would rather lose it saving Thunderclan/"
Crookedjaw only nodded as Mistystar lept out of the den and yowled "Let all cats old enough to catch their own prey join here beneath High stump for a clan meeting!"
Many cats came out at her call. Crookedjaw sat beside her as she said "Thunderclan is in trouble...I have heard their wails!"
Waveheart asked "Really?"
Mistystar nodded and mewed "That's why I want warriors that are fit to come on this mission to save Thunderclan."
The warriors meowed in agreement as she said "Let's go help Thunderclan!" She charged out of the den with most of the warriors and Crookedjaw after her.
Birdwing fought a tough tabby tom while Eclipse was being shaken by a built tom bigger then him. He mewed and said "Geroff!"
He flipped on his belly and kicked his legs out. Birdwing did not notice Ashstar when he sneaked up on her. She was about to call out to Eclipse when he yowled "Watch out!"
Birdwing turned to see Ashstar and when he stood up a lighter tabby came out of no where and began a battle cry, and Birdwing realized that it was Riverclan's battle cry. She yowled "Thank Starclan!"
Crookedjaw twitched his whiskers and lept into battle. Ashstar shook off the shock and said "Birdwing, you are mine, and mine alone!"
Birdwing flicked her tail from side to side and said "Bring it, Ashstar!" she lept at Ashstar but Ashstar jumped over her...right on Mistystar.
He bit down hard and Mistystar fell to the ground, never to wake up again. Crookedjaw froze and unsheathed his claws and yowled "Shadowclan!"
Darkfoot ran into the camp with Windclan and said "Need a hand?!"
More cats were coming and the rogues attacked the leaders..including Crookedjaw. He screeched and Eclipse lept up to help him but the other leaders fell.
Birdwing leaped onto Ashstar while he was yowling victory. She realized what move she would have to pull, it was a legendary, and a killer move. she flipped him onto his belly and scratched it.
She drove her claws downward as far as they could go. And Ashstar let out a gurgling cry. He stopped breathing. Ashstar was dead.
The rogues stopped fighting at once and yowled "Retreat!" All the rogues ran out of camp.
The clan cats, especially the elders, were staring at Birdwing, and Mousefur murmured "Scrouge...." Birdwing stared down at the water, and she could almost see the reflection of Scourge.
The new leaders nodded at each other before Crookedjaw asked "Will you be ok, Birdwing?"
She nodded and the other three left the camp. She sighed as Cherryflower came up to her and said "Ready to get your lives, Birdstar?"
Birdwing followed Cherryflower out of camp.