This is Episode Two, Season One, of I will run forever.
I instantly feel pain searing through my pelt as the cats attack me. My shock suddenly turns into energy; I think I can use this to attack them.
I kick my hind legs up towards the attacker’s belly, and suprisingly, he flew off. He landed with a thud behind me. I shoot up, immediately dropping into a crouch as another cat charges towards me. I try and leap over the cat, but I fail, clumsily crashing on the cat’s back.
The cat (apparently a she-cat) rears up and I fall, smashing into the ground. Pain spreads through my forehead, and when I struggle to lift my head, everything is blurry.
“Just so you know, we are not interested in prisoners!” Another cat spat, digging it’s teeth into the back of my neck. I shudder with pain, screaming.
Then the weight leveled off. I struggle to raise my head again, and I see other cats fighting the attackers. One had a fire-like pelt, the next had a tortishell coat, and the last was a small, golden tabby.
Soon, the attacking cats fled, spitting and growling in their wake. The fire-like cat—a tom—swiftly turned around and helped me up.
I wobbled on my paws and almost fell. He caught me and steadied me.
“You can barely stand,” He noted.
My surroundings were still very blurry, and black spots started forming at the edges of my eyes. How hard did I hit my head?
After what seemed like a very long time—but was probably only a minute—I was standing on my own. Soon, my vision cleared, and I could see the cats clearly. The fire-like tom was still looking at me, concerned, and the two other cats were discussing something.
“Sizzlepaw, this isn’t up for disscusion—” The tortishell said.
“But Jadeshadow, she may be a spy! We can’t trust her!”
I snort quietly. A spy? More like a spy who can’t even defend herself.
The fire-like tom cut them off. “Jadestorm! Sizzlepaw!”
The two cats stopped thier conversation and looked at me. The golden-tabby, a she-cat, bounded up to me.
“Who are are you?” she demanded, sniffing me curiously.
Who are these people?
“Sizzlepaw!” The fire-like tom snapped. “Is that how you talk to another cat? Introduce yourself!”
The golden-tabby bowed her head. “Sorry....” She looked back to me. “I’m Sizzlepaw. Now, who are you?”
Sizzlepaw. What a weird name.
“Sage,” The fire-like tom said thoughtfully. He nodded at me. “I’m Flaredash.”
“And I’m Jadeshadow,” The tortishell cat grunted.
I now realize that the all looked skinnier than usual. The famine is affecting them too.
“Who were those cats attacking me?” I asked.
“We’ll explain everything once we get back to camp,” Flaredash replied.
Camp? Are they taking me with them?
“Sorry, but I can’t go with you to.....wherever you’re going.” I shifted my paws. I need to get back to Tulip and Tanner! “I need to go back home.”
Flaredash looked at Jadeshadow. Jadeshadow just flicked her tail. “Very well then,” she snapped. “Go.”
Even though I was slightly taken aback by her reply, I ignored her. I nodded my head in thanks, turned around, and dashed off. I couldn’t help noticing that Lark’s body was mysteriously gone.
Oh Lark. You didn’t deserve to die, I thought in grief. I hope.
I finally reached the stream where I first entered the forest. This was when I realized that I was bleeding; and extremely tired.
My breath caught in my throat as I spotted ‘our’ den. I trudged over towards the entrance. I braced myself, squeezing my eyes shut, for seeing bloody, dead bodies of Tanner and Tulip.
Something tugged my fur.
I slowly opened my eyes.
“Tulip!” I exclaim.
Relieved and full of joy, I saw Tanner and Tulip right in front of me. They were as good as ever.
“Hey Sage!” Tanner said, bounding up to me.
“You’re okay!” I wrap my tail around them both, embracing them. They both joyfully—and slightly confused—embraced me back.
“You aren’t okay,” Tanner whispered, worried. I looked down. Bloody scratches covered my pelt from ears to tail-tip.
“You’re right. I just need some sleep, though. I’ll recover soon.” I sighed, and basically fell into my nest.
Tulip nodded her head.
“Where’s Lark?” Tanner asked.
But I was to sleepy to tell him. I’ll tell them after, I thought. Relief washed through me as the comfort of sleep engulfed me.
I woke up with a start.
I looked around, frenzied. Was this all a dream? But then I saw the scratches.
Shutting my eyes in pain, I grunted. Nope. Not a dream.
Tulip and Tanner were suddenly sitting beside me.
“So, where’s the prey you found?” Tulip asked, curious.
My heart sank. The promise. I forgot all about it.
“And where’s Lark?” Tanner demanded. “He went out yesterday saying he had to make some dirt, but never came back.”
“Also, who attacked you?” Tulip had a worried look on her face.
I sighed. “Okay, it’s a long story. Are you ready to hear it?”
So I told them everything. Not leaving any part out, because they had a right to know what happened to Lark. They seemed to understand why I wasn’t able to bring back prey for them, which was relieving for me. Tulip also told me that Lark fed them a mouse. Poor Lark.
Tulip’s eyes widened in shock. “He’s......dead?”
“Yes.” I hurt me to see my two siblings so upset. Tanner bowed his head in grief.
“Whoever did this to Lark,” Tanner growled, “is going to pay. I’ll take them down with my epic battle skills!” He rolled over, batting his paws in the air; he got back up, panting.
“Sure, lets go with that,” Tulip swatted Tanner with her tail, amusement edging her voice.
I laughed. I was so happy my siblings could make the best out of every situation.
“We will all miss him,” I said, bittersweetness in my tone. Tanner and Tulip nod their head.
“Sage, will you get better?” Tanner asked.
“I told you I will,” I say, smiling.
After some time, Tulip nestles beside me, and I could feel the grief and shock in her pelt. Sleepily, Tanner lays down in his nest, shutting his eyes.
My poor siblings.
A sudden shiver passes through me, and I realize Tulip and Tanner felt it too.
I gasped. The snow!
“S-Sage,” Tulip whispered, quivering, “What’s going on?”
“I’m gonna find out,” I murmured, racing towards the entrance.
My jaw dropped when I saw outside; it was covered with snow cascading roughly from the skies.
“Not now...” I just stood there, shocked.
So many questions ran through my head. How did I not notice this? Is it me or did this snow come early? How am I going to survive? How are my siblings going to survive?
“I-it’s s-so c-c-cold,” Tanner suddenly appeared beside me.“W-what’s g-g-going o-on?” He was shaking with cold.
“It’s a snowstorm.” I look at Tanner with a worried glance.
“Let’s go inside, Tanner.”
As we walk inside, Tulip walks towards me.
“It’s a snowstorm, isn’t it,” She spoke quietly.
“Yes,” I nod grimly. “No-leaf came early.”
I lay down in my nest. Tulip plops down right next to me, burying her face into my fur, desperate for warmth. Tanner hunkers down close to Tulip, falling asleep almost instantly. I curl my tail around both of them, making sure they are warm. I smile sadly at both of them.
Tulip looks up at me.
“Sage, are we going to survive?”
Pain stabs my heart but I shake it away. I will protect Tulip and Tanner no matter what; although it will take many battles to do it.
“Yes,” I say, although I was sadly uncertain. “I will do whatever it takes to protect you. My love for you will run forever.” And I meant that.
Tulip nodded her head, satisfied. She slowly fell asleep.
My thoughts then drifted to my parents. A long time ago, when I was only eight moons old, my mom and dad seemingly disappeared, with my mom rumored to be murdered, and my dad....well....I actually don’t know what happened to him. They left me and my one-moon-old siblings with Lark, who raised me until I was able to hunt and fight. I barely have any memories of them.
Mom, Dad, are you up there in the skies?
As I thought about my parents, I fell into a comfortable sleep.
I sat up, blinking groggily in suprise. My scratches were starting to heal, but you could still see the crusty dry blood covering most of them; also, they still stung.
“Sage!” Tulip skittered towards me, and the terror in her eyes seemed tangible. My stomach tightened.
“Huh? What?” Tanner suddenly awakened, looking around in a confused and oblivious manner.
“What’s going on?” I ask distressfully.
“There are ca—”
Before Tulip could finish, four or five cats step through the entrance of our den.
I shot out of my nest and in front of Tanner and Tulip, my fur bristling.
“Stay behind me!” I growled at Tulip and Tanner, and they seem even more frightened. I soften. “Please.”
Tulip and Tanner nod frantically.
The cats approach. As soon as they do, I growl at them. I’m honestly afraid of them, but I must stay strong. For my siblings.
They seem taken aback by my hostility, but I still don’t care.
“Who are you?! What do you want?!” I snapped, hoping and praying that they weren’t the cats that attacked me two or three days ago.
The cat at the front of the group, a silver she-cat, steps closer toward me.
“I am Skystar, one of the leaders of LionClan,” She spoke calmly. “And we are here to take you to LionClan camp.”