In Their Paws
A collab by Brams and Peacey
- 1 Blurb
- 2 Prologue - Brams
- 3 Chapter One - Peacey
- 4 Chapter Two - Brams
- 5 Chapter Three - Peacey
- 6 Chapter Four - Brams
- 7 Chapter Five - Peacey
- 8 Chapter Six - Brams
- 9 Chapter Seven - Peacey
- 10 Chapter Eight - Brams
- 11 Chapter Nine - Peacey
- 12 Chapter Ten - Brams
- 13 Chapter Eleven - Peacey
- 14 Chapter Twelve - Brams
- 15 Chapter Thirteen - Peacey
Dewpetal was always an ordinary she-cat in WingClan - the one who always respects the leader, the one who works endlessly for her Clan. When the medicine cat starts talking about a prophecy, she is frightened about what is going on...
Meanwhile, outside the Clan, Soot is a rogue who is worried by a threat looking on the horizon. As such, he joins WingClan, and tells them of his threat. Only one cat believes him - and that is Dewpetal.
Now Soot and Dewpetal must convince the Clan about what's coming, before it's too late...
Prologue - Brams
Silence echoed in the darkness, nothing but a clearing with a pool could be seen. Trees surrounded it, roots thick and strong. The area seemed dotted with starlight that seemed as if it could blind someone, but its beauty could not be contained in words.
There was a rustling noise, and a reddish-furred she-cat, her fur also dotted with starlight, came into the clearing. A tortoiseshell - another she-cat, yet her fur wasn't covered in starlight like the other one - followed. In graceful movements they sat down by the pool, looking down into its depths.
The tortoiseshell turned to her companion. "Redstar? Do you have a message for WingClan?"
The reddish-furred cat - Redstar - sighed. Her amber eyes were like lights in the darkness. "I wouldn't call it a message." The former WingClan leader dipped one white paw into the water from the pool, which was lapping by the two cats' paws. "I would call it a prophecy."
"A prophecy?" The tortoiseshell she-cat staggered to her paws, almost toppling into the pool with shock. Ruffling her fur, realizing what Redstar had said, she sat down again. "There hasn't been a prophecy in a long time, as far as I've heard."
"There's another one," Redstar whispered, turning her head back to the tortoiseshell. "Sorrelfrost, these two cats have a great destiny ahead of them. You'll see."
Sorrelfrost snorted. "How am I meant to know who they are?" she hissed. "Prophecies are meant to be a mystery!"
"That's the whole point," Redstar pointed out, lowering her head. The red-furred she-cat rose to her paws, and started to pace around the pool. "Part of being a medicine cat is speaking with StarClan. This means speaking with me, as well as the other ancestors of WingClan that reside in these skies. And now, Sorrelfrost, a new challenge awaits you."
"What is it?" Sorrelfrost asked. The tortoiseshell she-cat was trembling.
At once, Redstar stopped pacing, and at the opposite end of the pool to Sorrelfrost, she sat down. The next time she spoke, her voice was different, unlike how she usually spoke: "Danger is looming. Only dew in wings can help you, and soot on the outside. The minority they will stay, but in the darkest time they will shine."
Sorrelfrost's eyes widened in shock. The tortoiseshell jumped to her paws at once. "Redstar? Are you all right?"
"Yes, I'm fine." That was Redstar, who gave a snort to reply indignantly. "What are you talking about?"
At once, Sorrelfrost's mouth opened in shock. "But -" she stammered, staring wildly at Redstar. "You were - were speaking really - weird..."
"I don't know what you're talking about," Redstar huffed at Sorrelfrost. "When was I ever talking funny? Do you have bees in your brain?" After this, Redstar relaxed, and it seemed that all her anger was gone. However, she still stared at Sorrelfrost, and whispered: "Remember, Sorrelfrost. Only the dew and the soot can save WingClan..."
"But -" Sorrelfrost stammered, as she watched Redstar rise to her paws. With a sweep of her white-tipped tail, and a thrumming of paws on the forest floor, the StarClan cat was gone.
"I don't understand..." Sorrelfrost whispered helplessly, when Redstar had gone.
In Sorrelfrost's ears, the prophecy echoed over and over again: Danger is looming. Only dew in wings can help you, and soot on the outside. The minority they will stay, but in the darkest time they will shine...
Dew in wings and soot on the outside...
The ground started slipping from under Sorrelfrost's paws, and she wanted to yowl. Blackness started to cover her vision. The last thing that Sorrelfrost thought before she vanished in it forever was:
What's going to happen to WingClan?
Chapter One - Peacey
"Dewpaw, do you promise to uphold the warrior code even at the cost of your life?" Asked Flamestar. His eyes gleamed as his daughter was becoming a warrior at last. Dewpaw's eyes shone. It was finally the day she had been waiting for!
"I do." On the outside Dewpaw was calm but on the inside she was bouncing around.
"I now give you your warrior name, Dewpetal, and we welcome you as a full warrior of WingClan!" He yowled out. Then he repeated the same ritual to Dewpetal's brother, the newly named, Flarestripe.
"Dewpetal! Flarestripe! Dewpetal! Flarestripe!" Cheered the rest of WingClan. The two littermates touched noses and stepped down from the highrock. Their mother, Silverrain rushed forward to the warriors. Her silver fur looked identical to Dewpetal's.
"I'm so proud of you both! Flamestar picked out real good names for the both of you!" Said Silverrain. She started licking Dewpetal and Flarestripe like they were kits.
"Mom, stop. We are warriors now. You need to treat us like you treat Shrewfang!" Yelled Dewpetal. Shrewfang was their half-brother. Before Silverrain fell in love with the handsome deputy, Flamepelt then, she was in love with Lakeclaw, who died fighting StormClan.
Silverrain looked taken aback. "But you still are my kits!" she protested. The littermates turned and walked away. She sighed and padded away but Dewpetal stopped her.
"We may be your kits but, we are warriors now. We are going to start making our own choices now."
Dewpetal and Flarestripe both sat silent vigil that night. Flarestripe stared into the forest but his sister did the opposite. She stared at the stars, thanking StarClan for everything. She was born, raised, got her apprentice name, trained and finally got her warrior name thanks to StarClan.
Sence they were supposed to be silent, Dewpetal said a silent prayer to StarClan, thanking them for her beautiful warrior name and hoping she would soon get an apprentice.
The next morning The two padded off to get their friends, Flowerstorm and Leafypelt. Both were brown shecats withh beautiful green eyes. Dewpetal knew more than anyone that Flarestripe had a major crush on Leafypelt. Flowerstorm was Sorrelfrost's apprentice.
"Hi Leafypelt, wanna go hunting?" Asked Flarestripe. Leafypelt smiled and said 'bye' to her sister.
"Where to? I think it's wise to hunt by the FrostClan territory. The battle with StormClan is fresh and at the last gathering StoneClan seemed jumpy." She said. The others agreed but Dewpetal felt a teinge of jealousy. Dewpetal hadn't ever been to a gathering before. When she was a young apprentice she was naughty and punished by not being able to go to the gathering until she was a warrior. Leafypelt seemed to read her mind.
"Don't worry Dewpetal. You will go to the next gathering seeing that you are a warrior." Dewpetal felt embarrassed and her brother laughed but was silenced when she gave him the 'death glare'.
Chapter Two - Brams
A scurry of small paws alerted the black cat to attention. Tasting the air, he could scent mouse, wreathing around the tree trunks. Pinpointing its location, he crouched.
Creeping stealthily forward, still eyeing up his prey, he kept his eyes on his prey. He was so close to it now, too good to resist. He brought a paw over it…
“Oh, mouse dung!” hissed a voice in the distance. Recognizing the voice, the cat flinched. In the loss of attention, and in a split second, the mouse found its chance to escape, slithering through the low-hanging branches of the pine tree.
“Mouse dung! You made me lose my prey!” hissed the black cat furiously. He then got up from his crouch, and stormed into the forest.
He knew who had made that noise – it was Spider, his littermate. He could smell her faint scent, and the cat tracked it. It seemed like an age before he emerged, and set his eyes on a lithe black-and-white she-cat, her blue eyes like fire.
“Your yowling made me lose my prey, Spider,” hissed the cat, crouching defensively. “Can you be quieter next time? I had this mouse, and it was so close to being caught…”
Spider turned towards the smoky cat, and snorted. “You sound like you’re exaggerating, Soot,” she mewed smoothly. “You didn’t catch anything, so how can you prove what you were doing?”
For a moment, Soot felt deflated. What was the point in trying to convince Spider – his boisterous, playful sister? Finally, he managed to get out: “I actually did, Spider, I really did. Do you doubt my ability?”
Spider bared her teeth at Soot. “Yes, I do!” she snapped.
Frightened, Soot backed away, and fled back into the forest. Now was not time to argue with Spider. Fleeing back into it, he skidded to a halt when he recognized cat scent.
The WingClan border, Soot realized with a jolt. In the forest, there were four Clans – WingClan, StoneClan, StormClan, and FrostClan. Soot didn’t know much about them – but he had rumours that rogues like him weren’t welcome inside their borders.
Cautiously, he backed away from their scent markers. What if a WingClan cat saw him here? What would he do? Backing away until he was sure he wouldn’t be seen, he stared at the border. At the moment, the Clans seemed more interesting than hunting.
Soot gazed at the scent line, invisible but still there. What was there to life as a Clan cat? His parents – Bird and Pine – had never told him anything. To Soot, they seemed nervous about something.
What’s their problem with the Clans? Soot thought skeptically. They haven’t done anything to us. So why do they seem to have a grudge?
The questions tugged at Soot’s mind, but they were not important enough to answer. Bored, Soot moved away and padded back into the forest.
The silence greeted Soot welcomely – he appreciated the silence when it came. Sometimes, it was hard to escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life in the forest. Walking for a while, appreciating his beauty, Soot could really appreciate in what a place he lived in.
He thought he heard a voice, disturbing him. Pricking his ears, Soot managed to catch some voices:
“Those Clans are a nuisance. Why do they have to be there? Can we see if we can attack them for some territory…?”
“It seems like a plan… which Clan do you think will be more vulnerable? I heard a rumour going between the Clan cats that WingClan and StormClan had a war recently. Should we attack one of them?”
Hearing those words, Soot was surprised. The Clans attacked each other? Shrugging away the thought, he listened to what the cats were saying again:
“What about WingClan? They’re the biggest nuisance of them all. Why can’t they just get out of the place?”
“Deal, my friend. WingClan shall be attacked. Let’s go find some cats to join us.”
Fur bristling, Soot fled. How would WingClan react if they found out? In a split-second moment, Soot vowed to tell them – otherwise there would be an unfair battle.
And what’s the point in that?
Chapter Three - Peacey
"Hang on. I think I smell something." Said Dewpetal as she hunted with her friends. She sniffed the air and shrugged. "I think itss a rouge, but the scent is stale. No big deal, they were probably just crossing by." Leafypelt let out a small giggle of amusement.
"How do you do that? You can smell everything! I just admire your scenting skills. What do you smell right now?" She was just teasing but Dewpetal opened her mouth to taste the air. Her eyes widened and she raced off. The sun shone on her like a spotlight illuminating the young warrior as she ran.
"Dewpetal!" Yelled Flarestripe. The two of them raced off to find the warrior. Dewpetal ran back to them and was clearly surprised that they were so scared. She dropped a limp mouse on the ground, by her paws.
"What?" She asked innocently. Leafypelt and Flarestripe started laughing at their own mistake. "What!? Why are you laughing? At least I brought back prey!" She smiled and shook her head slowly. These Warriors were acting like kits.
"We - we thought something - something was - wrong!" Meowed Leafypelt betwenn laughter. Dewpetal started laughing too. It felt good to act like a kit again.
The three were hunting all day and brought back lots of prey. The freshkill pile was full and it would be a good Greenleaf for WingClan. The dutys were done and Dewpetal was happy at the day's success.
Graypaw was off hunting so Dewpetal decided to help the young tom. She nipped a vole and a mouse from the pile and took it over to Brambleheart, the kind, but at times grumpy elder who was telling the older kits about some battle she fought in. After sharing a piece of freshkill with Flarestripe she realized that there was nothing better to do than what she did next.
"Hi Dawnfoot!" She yelled as she walked into the nursery. Dawnfoot was Shrewfang's mate, expecting kits any day soon. The dark gray queen smiled at the young warrior and said with a chuckle,
"No need to yell, I can hear you!" The two shecat were closer than most. When Dewpetal was a kit, Dawnfoot would tell her stories that the elders didnt tell her because those elders passed on. Dawnfoot is nice to all kits so having her own would be great for her. She thought.
"Whatss new? Is the hunting good?" Asked the queen. Dewpetal froze for a moment. She was supposed to feed the queens! Her mentor would be very angry at her! Then she remembered. Imm a warrior now - duh! She said to herself. She realized her friend was waiting for an answer
"The apprentices are learning a lot and the pile is bigger than mountains!" She exclaimed.
"What are you going to name your kits?" Dewpetal asked. Her friend thought for a small moment.
"I was thinking Duskkit, Mousekit, and Swiftkit."
Then a strange, yet familliar scent washed over Dewpetal. A rouge! The clan, with their weak noses didn't scent the rouge. She looked around for where it was coming from but then a scrawny black cat ran into the camp.
"Rouges are targeting your clan!"
Chapter Four - Brams
Soot started cursing in his mind. Why had he decided to run right into the WingClan camp for? It wasn't the wisest idea, now that Soot could think clearly.
All the cats in the clearing had fierce gazes locked on him. Soot wanted to look away, but he kept his gaze on them. It was best to keep his look confident in a time like this.
"Now, what are you doing in our camp?" A bright ginger tom with blazing amber eyes padded to the front of the crowd of cats. The amber pits of fire were starting at him, burning into Soot's pelt. Soot had to work up the courage to speak:
"I said, rogues are targeting your Clan," Soot repeated, barely managing to keep his gaze steady.
After this, a wave of murmuring broke out. The cats of WingClan started to talk between one another in soft voices. Soot managed to overhear some of their conversations:
"Should we believe him? He's not a Clan cat. I doubt he's telling the truth."
"Send him away - he's trespassing! I don't really care what he says about anything."
"Not being in a Clan doesn't necessarily mean he's not telling the truth. StormClan lied to us, remember? That's how that battle broke out."
Soot was furious as to what some of the cats said, and he felt his smoky black fur bristle. Was there really a point in being with the Clans? Was that why they trusted their warriors so much.
"Leave." The bright ginger cat spoke again, silencing everyone else. He looked furious with Soot. "Leave now, or I will send my warriors to find you."
At once, Soot turned in fear, and hared out of the WingClan camp. The words that some of their cats had said rang in his mind, and it made him wonder if being in a Clan was the best place to be.
Let me think this over...
Five sunrises had passed since Soot had wandered onto WingClan territory. In that time, he had thought over his decisions, and decided what was best for him to do. He knew that the rogues were going to attack WingClan, so the final idea was going to involve them.
I hope this will be alright, Soot thought, as he padded through the forest. I hope their tensions aren't that high from that incident a few sunrises ago. I'll just have to hope for the best...
As Soot approached the WingClan border, he sat down and waited. He must be seen, for his plan to work. Trespass was not an option today.
Finally, as the sun got to the highest points, some cats appeared. Soot noticed a dark tom leading the patrol, with a long-furred gray she-cat, a young gray tom that was younger than the others, and a mottled tortoiseshell completed the group.
The dark tom tasted the air. "Rogue," he hissed. "It's that one that was in the camp."
"Can I attack him?" asked the younger cat, almost seeming to bounce on his paws.
Obviously they haven't noticed me, Soot thought scathingly, crouching into the undergrowth. He didn't need to be seen yet.
"No, Graypaw!" hissed the mottled tortoiseshell. She moved over to block the younger cat's way before he could move again. "As your mentor, I have decided you are not going to fight today."
Graypaw looked crestfallen; Soot could see that. Fighting the urge not to do anything, he stepped out from the undergrowth.
At once, the dark cat hissed. "You're not allowed to be here! Flamestar has forbidden you from doing so!"
"No! I want to speak with you now!" Soot hissed at the dark cat.
"I'm not letting you speak," the dark cat retorted, green eyes full of fire. "You're not allowed here!"
"Let him speak, Shrewfang." The long-furred gray she-cat spoke. Her eyes were as blue as the sky. "You have no right to judge cats before they have had their say - whether Clan or not."
For a moment, Shrewfang was silent, then he nodded curtly. "Fine, Dewpetal," he hissed. "Fine." Then he turned back to Soot, who was now trembling in fear. "You got what you wanted now, right? Speak."
It took Soot an effort to speak, after what all the WingClan cats had said. Finally he brought up the courage that he needed, and mewed:
"I want to join your Clan."
Chapter Five - Peacey
"You want to join WingClan?" Asked Flamestar. Murmurs spread through the clan. The rouge looked around nervously.
"I think it's a good idea! We need more warriors, and rouges know how to hunt and fight!" Dewpetal immeadiaely wished she hadn't said that. They're going to think i'm disloyal!
"You heard me. I want to join WingClan." Said the dark rouge. A flame colored cat, and a brown shecat joined Dewpetal's yowls.
"Let him join!" Shouted Flarestripe. Dewpetal smiled at her brother. Thank you for seeing the truth brother. "We need more warriors and he might be good enough." Dewpetal looked at her brother in surprise.
"But what about what he said a few sunrises ago? What if he's right and rouges are going to attack us?" We might be wiped out! WingClan could be destroyed!
"Why do you even want to join us? And whatss your name?" Asked Flamestar. The dark tom kept his gaze up on the leader. He seemed braver than last time he came. He took a deep breath and spoke once more.
"My name is Soot. I fear routes are targeting your clan. I realized that you are weak after the battle with StormClan so I-" He was cut off by Shrewfang, who seemed very angry.
"Are you calling WingClan weak? Because if you are im going to shred you to bits!" Soot seemed a bit scared but stood his ground.
"No, that's not what I'm doing. I'm saying that, like your warriors said, I would be a good addition to your clan." Flamestar nodded and frowned a bit.
"I'll need time to think. I will give you my answer by moonhigh. You are not allowed to eat any freshkill if you dontt hunt for the rest of the clan." Then he walked into his den. Dewpetal saw it as a chance to meet the rouge.
"Um, hi. I'm Dewpetal. I can show you around and teach you about the rules of the warrior code if you like." She said to Soot who seemed a bit taken aback by Flamestar's statement. He didn't speak for a while until Deepetal urged him to with a nudge and a smile.
"Sure. What's the warrior code?" He asked looking at Dewpetal with curiosity. She smiled and got to her paws.
"Come on. We can hunt when we're gone. It will help me explain it a bit better. Just don't wander off. Other clans aren't exactly what you would call friendly. Nor are we though."
"The first rule is 'Lay down your life for your clanmates; you may have friendships with other clans but remain loyal to your own, for one day you may meet them in battle.' Or something like that. It means you can have other friends but you may have to kill them to be loyal to your clan." Said Dewpetal as they wandered through the forest. Dewpetal saw him cringe as she said that but she said no more.
"So, if the rouges attack us and Spider attacks your leader, I might have to hurt her for WinClan. Right?" Who's Spider? Wondered Dewpetal.
"Yes. That's right. Next, don't tresspass on others' territory..."
Chapter Six - Brams
All this stuff that Dewpetal was talking about was making Soot’s head spin. To him, it was a bit too much to take in. First the Clan, then this warrior code…
“…and, the last code is when trouble threatens all of us, each Clan should forget their boundaries to protect the four.” Dewpetal finished. Her blue eyes sparkled with interest as she gazed at Soot. He thought that the long-furred she-cat was thinking of Sider – he had mentioned her early on in her talk.
But I have no loyalty to Spider anymore, Soot thought, shooting a glare at the forest around him – WingClan territory. I’ve made my choice. She’s a rogue, my loyalties are to WingClan.
“Let’s go take this back to camp.” Dewpetal’s mew jolted Soot out of his thoughts, and then he remembered that they had been hunting while Dewpetal had explained the latter. Looking down at the small heap of prey, Soot took a few mousetails in his jaws. Dewpetal picked up a small squirrel and a shrew. Dewpetal flicked her tail at Soot to follow, and he obeyed, keeping the mousetails firmly in his jaws.
The walk to the WingClan camp seemed to calm down Soot, and at the same time, he felt as if time itself had slowed down to walk alongside him. It felt so surreal. By the time that he arrived back at the WingClan camp, however, he was jolted out of his thoughts by all the cats that were there. They were all staring at him silently as he came through, staring at him with beady eyes.
There was a moment of silence, and then a cat spoke: “Hey, look, it’s the rogue! Should we scare him off so he can live by himself?”
Soot turned to what had sourced the noise. A large, thickset gray tabby tom was staring at Soot with narrowed green eyes. A group of cats – mainly toms – was standing around him, and they all started to purr with amusement.
Soot stayed silent, and beside him, he felt Dewpetal’s fur bristle. Without looking at the thickset tabby, he turned to put his mice on the pile of fresh-kill. But before he could do so, one of the gray tabby’s friends – a muscular, dark brown tabby tom – caught him.
“What are you doing with those mice?” the brown cat hissed. His amber eyes were full of malice, and it scared Soot just to look at them.
Soot didn’t reply with words, only staring back at him. After a while, the brown cat repeated: “Tell me, rogue scum. What are you doing with those mice?” He bared his teeth at Soot, and he flinched when he heard the tabby’s claws unsheathe.
Once again, Soot didn’t reply with words. The mice still in his teeth, he tried to veer away from the tabby to get to the pile, but the warrior caught him off guard. Pain overtook Soot as he felt claws digging into his flesh, and he felt himself fall on the ground. The mousetails dropped out of his mouth, and got caked with dust on the camp floor.
The brown tabby now loomed over Soot. In the background, he heard cackling from the cat’s group of mates. “You just wasted Clan prey,” he mewed mockingly. “That’s breaking the warrior code.”
In the corner of his vision, Soot saw Dewpetal move over. The gray she-cat’s blue eyes were narrowed as she spoke to the tabby: “I have a correction to make, Thornflame. You’re the one that’s breaking the code. You just wasted prey.”
Thornflame turned his broad head towards Dewpetal, his amber eyes narrowed. “Shut up,” he hissed. Then he turned back to Soot, and growled: “Flamestar won’t let you be a part of WingClan. We have been pure-bred all the way through, and we’re not going to stop that now.”
“Actually, Thornflame, I have a correction to make,” mewed a deep voice.
At once, Soot felt a weight lift from him as Thornflame got off him, and at once Soot staggered to his paws. Blood dripped from the scratch that Thornflame had inflicted, and he wanted to claw the brown tom back. But now, his attention was on the bright ginger tom that was standing in the middle of the clearing.
The tom’s words rang in his mind: Actually, Thornflame, I have a correction to make. Did that mean that Flamestar had approved his request?
Flamestar’s attention first turned to Thornflame, and the dark tabby cowered below his leader. “Thornflame, I saw what you did,” Flamestar boomed. “You will be punished. You will tend to the elders for the next moon.”
“But I –” Thornflame stammered, and then he fell silent. Soot guessed that he had stopped protesting against his leader, because Flamestar had more power than he had.
Next, Flamestar’s attention turned to Soot. He felt himself starting to tremble in apprehension. What would Flamestar say to him about his proposal?
“Soot,” Flamestar began, “I have thought about your proposal. I have decided that I will allow you to join WingClan. I will tell the Clan that we will gather at moonhigh.”
At once, relief swept over Soot. Behind him, he heard Thornflame giving a disgruntled hiss, as the brown tom stalked away.
“I’d be honored to join you,” Soot gasped out. “I really am.”
Chapter Seven - Peacey
"Do you promise to uphold the- Dewpetal! Did you tech him the warrior code?" Said Flamestar as he gave Soot his warrior name. Dewpetal nodded. The ginger leader turned back to the former rouge and continued.
"Do you promise to uphold the warrior code even at the cost of your life?" Soot stared into his eyes with a gaze like ice.
"I do." He replied, his voice as cold as his gaze. Dewpetal thought she saw something more than just wanting to join WingClan. He wanted to join for a reason.
"Then, by the powers of StarClan, I give you your warrior name, Sootfang! Sootfang, we welcome you as a full warrior of WingClan!"
"Sootfang! Sootfang!" Cheered the clan. As Sootfang jumped down Dewpetal nodded for him to come with her. Once they were deep in the forest the gray shecat stopped.
"So? Why us? Why now?" Sootfang stared at Dewpetal as if she were not speaking cat.
"I don't know what you mean." He stammered. Dewpetal rolled her eyes and sat down.
"Why did you join? Why did you join us now? You joined for a reason." Sootfang sighed and gestured with his tail for Dewpetal to follow him. Dewpetal reconized the scent of rouges. A dark gray shecat was hunting in WingClan territory.
"Hey! Get off ofourr territory!" Yelled Dewpetal. She was about to leap forward but Sootfangg raised his tail to stop her. He took a ster forward.
"Spider! Itss me, Soot!" He called out to the dark shecat. She padded over to Dewpetal and Sootfang. Dewpetal looked at him suspiciously.
"Who's that?" She spat. Spider licked her paw and ran it over her ear.
"Spider, thatss my friend, Dewpetal. Dewpetal, Spider. She's my sister. Spider, tell Dewpetal about what Cloud is planning." Dewpetal nodded to Spider and she nodded back.
"Well, clan cat, Cloud is our uncle. He is planning to attack WingClan in a few moons or something." She said. Spider grabbed her prey and walked off. Dewpetal's fur started to bristle.
"Thatss our prey! It was on our territory! Drop it and leave!" She yelled after Spider. Sootfang looked at Dewpetal.
"Who cares about one piece of prey? We have bigger problems, like, I dont know, the rouges threatening to attack your clan." Dewpetal snarled and sat down.
"Yes. If she were attacking my father, you should attack her." Sootfang frowned.
"Spider would never hurt Flamestar. She is a good cat that wouldntt harm a mouse! Let alone a leader!" Dewpetal cocked an eyebrow at Sootfang.
"Really? Then what was she hunting, cause it looked a lot like a mouse to me." The dark tom rolled his eyes and they walked back to the camp, together but not talking.
When they got back to the camp, a thin wail came from the nursery. Sorrelfrost ran in with herbs and stuff. Shrewfang walked over to Dewpetal and Sootfang.
"Dawnfoot is kitting!" He said with a big smile. The good mood spread over to Dewpetal.
"Congratulations!" She exclaimed. Soot gave a friendly nod. They heard an exclamation from the medicine cat.
"The first kit is out, Shrewfang! Itss a she kit." Shrewfang went into the nursey and then Dawnfot let put another wail. Dewpetal managed to hear the conversation.
"And itss a tom!"
"I think something's wrong."
"You might have to raise the kits alone, but I will try to do my best." Dewpetal gasped. Her kits litter and friend might die! There was a long silence than seemed to last forever. A last wail from the queen came out and then nothing.
"The good news is that all three kits are healthy. The bad news, Dawnfoot is dead."
Chapter Eight - Brams
Sootfang was silent as the rest of WingClan sat vigil for Dawnfoot.
He was tasked to guard the camp, a 'warrior's vigil', the Clan deputy - Mottlefrost, the mottled tortoiseshell that had told off Graypaw for thinking of attacking him. She had set down tough rules, as well.
"Now, Sootfang," she had told him, "each warrior that is accepted into WingClan has to do this. You are not allowed to talk, as StarClan is watching you. If there is intruders, however, yell out and we'll come." Her amber eyes had flashed after this - a sign to Sootfang that Mottleheart didn't entirely trust him. "Do you understand?"
Sootfang had nodded, and now he was out here, the leaf-fall breeze tugging at his black pelt. Looking back again, he could see the dark tom - Shrewfang - touch his nose to his mate's pelt. He then muttered something inaudible to Dawnfoot.
How is she meant to hear him? Sootfang thought scathingly, turning away from Shrewfang. Then he remembered: Oh, right... they have their 'StarClan'. Maybe Dawnfoot can hear Shrewfang from there?
He didn't bother to open his mouth, however - he feared the worst if Mottlefrost heard him talking. Would she send him away from WingClan, to be a rogue once more? What would happen to them, when the rogues attacked?
He turned his head away from the vigil, and looked out onto the camp. This was his life now. He was a WingClan warrior, and he had to stay that way.
This is my home now. Nothing can change that.
When dawn broke along the horizon, Sootfang could barely keep his eyes open as the light shone into his eyes. Shutting them, he almost fell over as a wave of tiredness hit him. Opening his eyes again reluctantly, he saw Mottlefrost padding towards him, her tail high.
"Your vigil is over," the tortoiseshell deputy mewed, as she flicked her furry tail. "Go have a rest in the warriors' den." Sootfang noticed that Mottlefrost's tail was pointing to a large den, where he saw a ginger warrior - Flarestripe, Sootfang thought his name was - yawning. "If you're lucky enough, someone would've made you a nest, but I doubt it."
Sootfang gave a weary nod, as he traced his pawsteps towards the den. He was almost stumbling over his paws with tiredness when he came in - he'd never stayed up this late before...
Sootfang turned to the cat who had spoken, and he recognized Dewpetal. The long-furred gray she-cat had risen to her paws, avoiding a sleeping Thornflame as she padded over to him. "What do you want?" Sootfang mewed, as Dewpetal approached.
Dewpetal flicked her tail around Sootfang, and she beckoned him in a direction. "You need to sleep," she mewed. "Come on, I've made you a nest. You'd better hurry up, before Thornflame sees you so close to him."
At that moment, Sootfang wished to be by Mottlefrost, and to tease her. Mottlfrost, you got it wrong! Someone did make me a nest!
"It's next to mine," Dewpetal continued, snapping Sootfang out of his trance. She led him over to a nest near the edge of the den, which had no cats' scent in it. "Here. Have a rest. Mottlefrost might require you for a patrol later on, so you'd better recuperate while you can."
Sootfang nodded. "Thanks," he mewed to Dewpetal, and then broke off to yawn. He stretched, and then he got into his new nest, and curled up. As he closed his eyes, and gave way into sleep, the last thought he had was:
The rogues... Oh, StarClan, I fear for this Clan!
Chapter Nine - Peacey
"Wake up!" Yelled a voice. Dewpetal slowly opened her eyes to see a figure standing over her. It had blazing red fur and had a tom's voice.
"Flarestripe! Why did you wake me up. I don't have an apprentice to train, and I don't need to hunt until sunhigh. Dewpetal yawned.
"Correction! You didn't have an apprentice. Frostedbreeze's kits are old enough to become apprentices and Flamestar told me last night. We're going to be mentors!" He exclaimed. The gray SheCat blew fur out of her face.
"That's great! But there are three kits! Emberkit, Snowkit, and Oakkit. I totally want Emberkit as an apprentice and we all know you want Oakkit. Who will be a mentor to Snowkit?" She asked. Flarestripe sighed.
"I don't exactly know. It doesn't matter unless if it's someone stupid like that rouge. I hope it is Thornflame. He would be a good mentor unlike him." Dewpetal saw the dark gray shape stir beside her and hoped Sootfang wasn't awake.
"Sootfang is a warrior of WingClan and he deserves as much respect as us. Besides, Thornflame is already a mentor to Ashpaw. Who cares who her mentor will be. Like it or not, we'll have to train with them." Dewpetal sleepily padded out of the Warriors den, the crisp leavs crunching under her paws.
Leafbare is coming soon. We can't afford to lose our warriors to a battle. She thought grimly, thinking back to what Sootfang said. She sighed and frowned. Shaking the thought off Dewpetal walked over to where Silverrain and Flarestripe were comforting Shrewfang. It seemed like the only good news was the new apprentices.
"Hi guys." She said to the three. "Hey, Shrewfang, what did you name your kits?" Shrewfang smiled a bit at the arrival of Dewpetal.
"I thought you guys would never ask. I'll take you to see them if you want." He said. With a nod to his head he walked to the nursery. Entering Dewpetal saw the beauty of it. Snowkit, Oakkit, and Emberkit were play fighting, and Frostedbreeze was taking care of Shrewfang's three. The nursey had flowers laying around here and there and an empty nest where Dawnfoot should've been. It had flower petals scattered around it.
"I forgot how beautiful this place was." She whispered. "I miss the good old times." Shrewfang looked down to the ground and sighed.
"So do I." He padded over to where the three kits were resting his tail on their heads as he told his family their names. "Anyways... The dark gray shecat is Dawnkit, after her mother. The brown tom is Mousekit. I'm still deciding the one for the silver shekit."
"How about Echokit?" Suggested Flarestripe. Shrewfang nodded happily as if the death of his loving mate had never happened and she were standing next to him.
"Well, there we have it. Dawnkit, Echokit, and Mousekit. Dawnfoot would be proud of them, wherever she is." He said, smiling. Dewpetal thought back to the times where she was a young apprentice, running through the forest trying to find Leafypaw to show her her first catch.
"She is proud of them, and you too. So is your father." Said Silverrain. "We should cherish life. Even with the most tragic death of the best person, we must remember, death is a part of life. It will happen to everyone sooner or later. Celebrate life as it is. Today is the only today we will ever know."
Chapter Ten - Brams
Sootfang grimaced as he gazed out into the rogue territory that bordered WingClan.
His past still seemed to haunted him. Even though only a quarter-moon had passed since he had joined the Clan, it seemed that he had lived most of his life so far inside of it. He couldn't imagine living life outside of it any more - but that was partially because of the fears that he knew was outside of the Clan.
Licking one smoky black paw, and bringing it over his ear, Sootfang sighed. There was more to life than just looking out onto the horizon. Rising himself to his paws, he tasted the air.
There was no rogue scent in the air, but there was a strong, herby, WingClan scent nearby. He turned to see a tortoiseshell pelt flicker in the distance.
Sorrelfrost. Sootfang wanted to moan as he thought of the she-cat's name, but he resisted the temptatiom. He didn't particularly like Sorrelfrost - due to the fact that half the time, she seemed to act shifty against him and Dewpetal. The whole Clan had noticed her shiftiness - even her apprentice, Flowerstorm, who eyed up her mentor warily every time she started to stare at another cat.
Sorrelfrost stopped in the distance, and then started to move in Sootfang's direction. Sootfang felt his fur starting to bristle in annoyance. Oh, Sorrelfrost, just go away...
Unfortunately, his silent plea didn't work. Sorrelfrost approached Sootfang until she was face-to-face with him, and it made Sootfang himself feel nervous. He wanted to move away from Sorrelfrost, but he knew he was frozen to the spot. He knew that Sorrelfrost wanted something from the way she was staring at him - but why? He hadn't done anything against her...
What are you doing? Sootfang wanted to scream at her, but he held his tongue.
"Sootfang," Sorrelfrost hissed, as she approached him. Sootfang took a step back in frist, but just as quickly, Sorrelfrost took a step forward, so that she was just as close again. "You know you're on the minority of the Clan's side, aren't you? They don't believe you, about those rogues."
Shocked, Sootfang nodded, unaware as to what was going on around him. How does Sorrelfrost know? he thought, as he unsheathed his claws, and dug them into the soft ground. I never told her anything! Has she spied?
"It will come when the Clan least expects it," Sorrelfrost went on. The medicine cat then moved away from Sootfang - which gave him a chance to relax - and started to pace atound him, shooting him suspicious glares every so often. "You must convince them!"
Once again, the same thought came into Sootfang's mind. How does she know? He was now confident - surely she had done it - that she had been spying on him and Dewpetal! How else would she know that much about the battle? He had continued to discuss it with Dewpetal - the only cat who actually believed him - but the rest of the Clan was unconvinced, including Sorrelfrost herself. Why was she interested, all of a sudden?
Sorrelfrost stopped pacing, and she turned to face Sootfang again. She stared into his amber eyes, and Sootfang stared back. The next time that Sorrelfrost spoke, her voice was much deeper than it should've been, and she sounded much different than usual.
"Danger is looming. Only dew in wings can help you, and soot on the outside. The minority they will stay, but in the darkest time they will shine," Sorrelfrost told Sootfang, her eyes dark. Sootfang, frightened, backed away.
"What are you doing, Sorrelfrost?" he hissed at the medicine cat. "What was that for?" He felt the words slip out of him before he had the time to think, and he stepped forward again.
However, Sorrelfrost just stared at Sootfang curiously. "Sootfang, what are you doing?' she asked brusquely, her eyes narrowed. "Your fur is all bristled... why is it like that?"
Sootfang felt his mouth drop open. Has she forgotten what she just said...? "But-" he stammered. "What you said - dew in wings -"
Sorrelfrost stared at Sootfang coldly. "I have no idea what you are talking about," she hissed, before she turned away from him, her tail flicking rapidly. Sootfang heard Sorrelfrost mutter something under her breath, but he could not tell exactly what she had said.
Sootfang watched Sorrelfrost go, his eyes narrowed. Why didn't Sorrelfrost know? He sighed, and turned to look at the border again.
That thing that she said... what does that all mean?
Chapter Eleven - Peacey
"Dewpetal. We need to talk." Said a voice. It was Sootfang. Dewpetal took one huge last bite of her mouse and padded over to him, rolling her eyes.
"What?" She asked as she swallowed her mouse. The dark tom looked aroind nervously at all of the other cats just padding around. "If Thornflame is being a jerk again, just stand up to him. Claw him back." Now could I please go back and finish eating? She thought.
"No! It's. Not that, it's just I think we should discuss this with Sorrelfrost." The two padded off to the medicine den together. Sorrelfrost was arranging herbs and trying to get the cobwebs off of her paws.
"What is it? Torn claw? Thorn in your pad? Fight with StormClan? What ever it is I'm kind of busy, and since you aren't slreaming 'Oh Sorrelfrost! Help me!' I can tell its no big deal."
"No. We're not hurt. It's about the prophecy." Said Sootfang clearly and boldly. Dewpetal stared at him in surprise with her jaw open.
"Prophecy? Sootfang, you could've told me if it was a prophecy!" She exclaimed. Sorrelfrost walked to the entrance of her den.
"Sootfang, what prophecy? I never told anyone about a prophecy. There must be a mistake. I told nobody at all. And I don't even understand it myself. So go away.''
"You said something, like 'Darkness is looming. Only dew in wings and soot on the outside can help you. The minority's will stay but they will shine.' Or something like that. Just help us! You know what I'm talking about." Dewpetal was stuck in the middle of the conversation. She had no idea what the two were talking about. She realized Flowerstorm walked in.
"Guys! I think I understand your prophecy! Well Sort of Anyway... She is Dewpetal of WingClan, or otherwise dew in wings. Sootfang was a rouge, so he's soot on the outside. He joined to save us from the rouge attack. And that's the darkness!"
"My apprentice may be right. I got that prophecy from a former leader, Redstar. After telling it to me, she forgot everything and was confused when i asked her what was wrong." Said Sorrelfrost.
"The same thing when you told me the prophecy!" Exclaimed Sootfang.
"I beleive you, Sootfang, about the rouges. It might be hard to convince the clan about it.Anyways, Dewpetal, it's nearly sun high. Frostedbreeze's kits won't wait forever to get a mentor, and, Sootfang, you might be surprised who mentors Snowkit." And as if by signal, a voice ran through the clan.
"All cats old enough to catch prey gather under the Starrock for a clan meeting!" Called out the strong voice of Flamestar.
"You two warriors better get going. And good luck with the apprentices. I swear, apprentices are Impossible." Flowerstorm looked over at her mentor playful angrily.
"Heyyy!" She whined and gently pushed her mentor. Dewpetal and Sootfang walked out of the medicine cat den.
"Snowkit, Emberkit, and Oakkit, please climb up the Starrock. Same for Flarestripe, Dewpetal, and... Sootfang." The three warriors padded up the Starrock, proudly, waiting as eager as their apprentices to be mentors.
"Oakkit, you have reached your sixth moon and will hold the name Oakpaw until you have became a warrior. Your mentor will be Sootfang. Sootfang, you have not been in WingClan for long, but I trust you to be a good warrior and that you'll pass down all of your skills to Oakpaw." Dewpetal held her breath. Flarestripe wanted Oakpaw as his own apprentice and he already hated Sootfang as it was.
"Touch noses with Oakpaw." She whispered. Sootfang gave her a confused look but did as she told him.
"Emberkit, you are six moons old now, making you an apprentice with the name Emberpaw. Your mentor shall be Flarestripe. Flarestripe, you are a young, strong warrior. I hope you pass down that strength to Emberpaw." The orange warrior bent down and touched noses with his apprentice. "Snowkit, you've reached yoursixth moon, making you old enought to be an apprentice with the name Snowpaw. Your mentor will be Dewpetal. Dewpetal, you are a great tracker and have a skill with hunting. Please pass down your skills to Snowpaw."
Chapter Twelve - Brams
Sootfang shivered slightly as his nose touched Oakpaw's. It was slightly cold, and it only stayed that way for a moment, before the young cat pulled away in excitement. He looked to the side to see Dewpetal and Flarestripe pulling away from their apprentices as well, before the Clan started to cheer:
"Oakpaw! Emberpaw! Snowpaw!" they cheered, their voices loud. Sootfang noticed at once that their voices were obviously louder from when they had cheered for him at his warrior ceremony.
Maybe being Clanborn does make a difference, the black warrior thought bitterly as he padded over to Dewpetal and Snowpaw, who were discussing about stuff.
"What are we doing, Dewpetal?" Snowpaw mewed excitedly as she bounded around her mentor. The white tabby she-cat's ears were pricked up, her green eyes alight as she stared at her mentor. "Hello? Are you there?"
Dewpetal, who had seemed to have been in some sort of trance when Snowpaw had first spoken to her, snapped out of it at once. "What is it...?" she mewed sleepily, blinking. "Oh, it's you... we'll tour the territory first today, okay?"
Snowpaw didn't seem to think this was boring, and she mewed, "Okay!" as once again started to jump around Dewpetal. Sootfang rolled his eyes at Snowpaw for a moment, before turning to the camp entrance - to where Flarestripe was taking Emberpaw out of camp - before switching back to Dewpetal.
"Oh, hello Sootfang." Dewpetal noticed that he was looking in her direction. Blinking, she mewed: "You and Oakpaw can come with me and Snowpaw: I think it would be better, and we need the company, don't we? Oh, and where's Flarestripe? I was -"
"He already took Emberpaw out of camp," interrupted Oakpaw. The dark reddish-brown tom stared at Dewpetal with his pine-green eyes. "Flarestripe wanted to spend some time alone with his apprentice."
Dewpetal looked disappointed. "I wonder why..." The long-furred gray she-cat then got to her paws, and Sootfang followed. "Come on you two, let's get started." She flicked her tail at Oakpaw and Snowpaw.
Dewpetal took the lead, and Sootfang joined her, the two apprentices following in behind. They set out of camp at a steady rhythm, padding through the forest as Dewpetal pointed out certain things to Snowpaw and Oakpaw. Meanwhile, Sootfang listened, still not knowing WingClan enough to really be a great help.
They went to the Training Hollow to start, and then went past a few important landmarks in WingClan territory, which Snowpaw and Oakpaw looked very excited to see as they looked at them.
"Wow, this tree is massive," mewed Oakpaw in awe as they reached one of these landmarks: the Largetree. It was the largest, biggest tree in whole of WingClan forest: long, twisting roots stretched between multiple trees, and it was very tall too. "I didn't believe Frostedbreeze when she first told us about these!"
"Well, now you do," Dewpetal mewed brusquely in rely to his comment. "Come on, we stoill haven't got to the border's yet."
"Oh, that's the part I'm really looking forward to!" Snowpaw squealed at the mention of borders, before charging ahead of the patrol for a while until Dewpetal called her back to the rest of the group.
I could enjoy this, Sootfang thought, as he tasted the familiar scent on his tongue that he knew was the border. Maybe it's not as bad as my first thoughts of this...
They then approached the rogue border - a doubtful choice that Dewpetal had made, especially at this point in time - and she padded up to the border.
"This is a border," Dewpetal mewed formally to the apprentices. "This border, specifically, is one of our rogue borders."
At this, Oakpaw looked fairly interested, while Snowpaw looked disappointed. "I thought we were going to a Clan border! she whined. "I want to -"
"We're going to a Clan border after this," Dewpetal mewed firmly, causing Snowpaw to fall silent.
Those words, however, were not the thing Sootfang was focusing on. A shadow loomed nearby, and Sootfang saw dark ears behind a bush, which were creeping in Dewpetal's direction. Some other cat was there, and spying.
He opened his moth, to call a warning - but it was too late.
A dark shape sprung out at Dewpetal, and the she-cat was caught of guard. As the cat pushed her side, Dewpetal fell over as the intruder started to swipe at her. Nearby, Snowpaw and Oakpaw started to back away, obviously frightened.
Sootfang knew that something had to be done. Bracing himself, he leapt at the intruder, skrieking loudly:
Chapter Thirteen - Peacey
Dewpetal did nothing, paralyzed for a few seconds. The attack cought her off guard and her small injuries stung. Then she snapped out of it and leapt up, ready to fight back but Sootfang was already clawing at the rouge.
"Snowpaw! Oakpaw! Trace our scent trail back to camp tell them that our clan is being threatened by rouges, but don't send help. It's just one rouge!" Yelled Sootfang as he swiped at the rouge. Dewpetal joined him in an attempt to get rid of the rouge. Eventually, after some time, the rouge backed away and fled the warrior's territory.
"Sootfang, you haven't done anything wrong but I need to ask you, do you know this rouge?" Asked Flamestar. Dewpetal leaned in, nervous about what her friend would say. Half of her wanted him to say yes, that he'd know who cought them both off guard in a sudden attack. But the other half wanted him to say no. She didn't want him to feel betrayed by someone he once knew.