This is a fanfiction writen by Cinderstar for IcewratchXFeaterswirlXCraneheart's contest! :)
Berrypaw: black she-cat with green eyes, secretly has a crush on the deputy of the Clan
Swiftwhisker: Black tom with blue eyes. Deputy.
Spiderstar: Gray tabby tom with long legs and amber eyes. Leader.
Darkshine: glossy furred smokey gray tabby tom with dark blue eyes. Berrypaw's father.
Petalpaw: Tortiseshell and white she-cat with green eyes. Berrypaw's sister.
Brackenpaw: Golden brown tabby tom with white paws and a ginger tailtip and amber eyes. Berrypaw's brother.
Birdsky: Blue gray she-cat with blue eyes. Medicine cat.
Watersplash: Blue gray tabby she-cat with white patechs and blue eyes. Formerly of RiverClan.
Owlpaw: tawny brown tom with huge amber eyes, very observant, is very quick and silent.
Rosepaw: Ginger she-cat with blue eyes.
Skycloud: White she-cat with blue eyes.
Brownhare: Dusy brown tabby tom with amber eyes.
Hawkstar: Gray she-cat with darker gray flecks and amber eyes.
Sagestar: White tom with gray tabby patches and amber eyes.
Sunflare: golden tabby she-cat with ginger stripes and amber eyes.
Spottedbird: Ginger she-cat with white patches and blue eyes.
Rabbitkit: Brown and white tom with green eyes.
Chapter 1 - Berrypaw
Berrypaw padded beside her mentor, Swiftwhisker. The black tom was a young cat, but was made a warrior early due to how quickly he had learned. Not long after that, Spiderstar had decided to give him an apprentice. Berrypaw was that apprentice. Swiftwhisker had been made deputy when the previous deputy, Sunflare, had died of greencough two sunrises ago. Swiftwhisker was only four seasons old.
Berrypaw's mouth was watering due to the plump rabbit that was in her jaws. She glowed with happiness when she remembered just how her mentor had praised her for catching it. She found Swiftwhisker the most handsome and kindest cat in the whole clan, and praise meant for from him to her then from any other cat.
"You'll be a warrior before you know it!" Swiftwhisker meowed. "The clan is lucky to have you. You're the best hunter in the clan since Sunflare died."
Barrypaw felt a prick of grief at the thought of the gentle warrior, but it was overpowered by the joy she felt at Swiftwhisker's words. It soon melted away when she entered the camp. Every warrior looked distraught. Sunflare hadn't been the only cat with greencough, over half the clan was still ill with it. A wave of dispair seemed to be washing over the camp. They had lost four cats in the last moon.
Berrypaw added her catch onto the small fresh-kill pile. Although her belly growled with hunger, she wanted to make sure all the sick cats could eat first.
Berrypaw's sister, Petalpaw, raced up to her. "Two more cat fell ill while you were out hunting." Petalpaw announced sadly. "Darkshine and Spiderstar."
Berrypaw's mouth opened in shock. Not only was their leader sick, but her father was as well. That made two family memebers ill, Darkshine, and their brother, Brackenpaw.
"Haw's Brackenpaw?" She asked.
"Worse." Petalpaw meowed sadly.
"Has Birdsky had any luck finding camint?" Berrypaw asked.
Petalpaw shook her head. "Not even a root. We'll have to wait for leaf-bare to end before we find anything growing."
"Why is the leaf-bare so long?" Berrypaw hissed. "According to Birdsky, it should already be newleaf!"
Petalpaw shook her head. "I don't know. I'm just as frustrated as you."
"Can't Birdsky ask the other medicine cats for catmint? Sagestar wasted no time at the last gathering boasting how much herbs RiverClan had managed to find during this harsh season." Berrypaw asked, but she already knew the answer.
"Tension is high between all the clans. WindClan, RiverClan and ShadowClan are upset with us already. If they knew we were as weak as we are, they'd waste no time in attacking." Petalpaw meowed. Berrypaw knew she was right. The clans had been unhappy at ThunderClan for sheltering a cat they considered to be a traitor. Watersplash had been driven out of RiverClan, accused of killing a clanmate. Watersplash, knowing how sympithetic ThunderClan was had come to plead for their help. She had not done what RiverClan had accused her of, and shared her explination, and ThunderClan took her in and made her a warrior.
Unfortunately, WindClan and ShadowClan had also found cats dead, and Sagestar had wasted no time in telling them it was Watersplash's fault. It wasn't long before a WindClan patrol had discovered Watersplash's new home. Soon all the other clans found out, and they considered ThunderClan a traitor for sheltering a "murderer".
"All we can do is pray to StarClan." Berrypaw sighed.
Chapter 2 - Owlpaw
Owlpaw smiled as he raced Rosepaw back to the camp. He was fast, even for a WindClan cat. And he had never lost a race.
He slowed to let Rosepaw catch up to him. The ginger she-cat was one moon older than him, and they were best friends. Rosepaw and Owlpaw had been the only two kits in the nursery for most of their kithood, seeing as Rosepaw had no littermates and Owlpaw's littermates had all died of greencough before he could remember them.
"You're so fast!" Rosepaw meowed, completely out of breath. Owlpaw smiled.
"Hey, wait up for us!" Skycloud, Rosepaw's mentor called. Skycloud's mate, and Owlpaw's mentor, Brownhare, was padding beside her.
"You're too slow!" Rosepaw teased back.
"Oh really?" Brownhare meowed, narrowing his eyes. "Let's race then, me and Skycloud against you and Owlpaw."
"You're on!" Rosepaw meowed.
Owlpaw raced ahead, running just slow enough that Rosepaw could keep up, but not so slow that their mentors would pass them.
"See? What did Rosepaw tell you?" Owlpaw called to Brownhare and Skycloud."
"All right, we admit it, you're faster than us." Skycloud called.
Owlpaw purred in amusement.
"Any signs of ThunderClan? Or Watersplash?" Hawkstar meowed, padding up to the two apprentices and their mentors.
"Nothing out of the ordinary." Brownhare reported. "Their keeping up their defences well."
Hawkstar dipped her head. "We will attack as soon as newleaf arrives." She meowed.
Owlpaw felt uneasy at Hawkstar's words. They only had he word of Sagestar that Watersplash and ThunderClan were traitors. And he felt the old RiverClan leader wasn't as sane as he used to be. He had heard elders tales of the great things he had done for all the clans, but some of the things he said didn't make sense. ThunderClan had always been a noble clan, well as noble as a rival clan could get. Also, he had heard his mother comment on hoe great a warrior Watersplash was, before her supposed betrayal. And there were no clan scent detectble when they found Spottedbird's body bleeding to death on the moor. There was no proof to any of Sagestar's accusations. Oh, and there was the fact that Sagestar had also claimed that Hawkstar had cought some disease, Bloodcough, he had called it. Owlpaw had overheard the two leaders talking at the last gethering.
His thoughts were inturupted by Rosepaw's voice. "Come on, lazybones, let's go get dinner." She meowed, flicking her tail at the rabbit-stocked fresh killpile. Owlpaw smiled and chose out a plump black rabbit for them to share.
As the last of the rabbit was polished off, and they began sharing tounges, Owlpaw's thoughts drifted into a peaceful, happy part of his mind. He thought of his friendship with Rosepaw. Somehow, it felt stronger than when they had started their apprenticeships, and he felt his heart feel all warm, like a sun-warmed rock, when he was near her. Did he feel something more than friendship for her? Rosepaw was his only friend, so there was no way to tell. It didn't matter at the moment anyways. Newleaf would be here soon, and he was nearing the end of his apprenticeship. Life was better than it ever had been before, and like many times before, Owlpaw felt proud to be a member of WindClan.
Chapter 3 - Berrypaw
Berrypaw padded along the WindClan border, hunting. It was her final assessment, and she was determined to pass it. She was sniffing the air for prey, when she suddenly smelled a catscent. She recongnized it belonged to a WindClan apprentice she had met once at a gathering. She couldn't remember his name though. Another cat, whose scent she didn't recongnized, was with him. Judging by the scents, they were in her territory, and nearby to.
She stalking silently through the undergrowth, following the scent trail. Then, peeking through the ferns, she saw a tawny brown tom and a ginger she-cat.
"Caught it!" The she-cat meowed. "Owlpaw, let's go now before any ThunderClan sees us."
"We shouldn't be here in the first place." Owlpaw meowed, glancing warily over his shoulder, but not seeing Berrypaw. She could tell by his tone of voice he didn't want to tell the ginger she-cat off.
"No cat saw us." The ginger she-cat meowed.
"Oh really." Berrypaw meowed, stepping out of the undergrowth, and facing the WindClan apprentices.
"Rosepaw, head back home, I'll deal with this." Owlpaw meowed, not taking his eyes of Berrypaw. Rosepaw listened and raced off.
"Prey stealers!" Berrypaw hissed.
"I'm sorry, Rosepaw chased a rabbit over the border and was intent on following it. I couldn't persuade her not to or let her go alone." Owlpaw meowed.
"How do I know you're not trying to provoke us and start a war. WindClan aren't exactly happy with us right now." None of the clans are. Berrypaw thought with a sigh.
"I promise, I'm not." Owlpaw meowed, and Berrypaw could catch the seriousness in his gaze.
"You still stole prey." Berrypaw meowed. "Prey I was tracking down. I'm doing my assessment you know."
"Sorry." Owlpaw meowed. "It won't happen again."
Berrypaw narrowed her eyes, not sure whether to believe him or not. "Leave." She hissed.
Owlpaw nodded and turned around. Before he dashed back to his territory, he whispered. "I don't blame ThunderClan. I don't think Watersplash is guilty."
Berrypaw stared in amazement at Owlpaw's retreating back. There was more she wanted to ask him, but she knew Swiftwhisker was probably watching them, seeing as she was doing her assessment. I hope I can go to the gathering tomorrow night, and I hope he's there.
"From this moment on you will be known as Berrysong. StarClan honours your loyalty and determination." Spiderstar announced. He was only just well enough to perform the ceremony.
Berrysong smiled as the clan cheered her name and Petalflower's. Brackenpaw had been too ill to be made a warrior. She felt a pang of disappointment that he couldn't be well enough to share the moment, and become a warrior with her and theri sister.
As the cheering died down, Swiftwhisker padded to over her. "You'll be coming to the gathering tomorrow too." He told her. "You and Petalflower."
"Thanks!" Berrysong meowed. She only hoped that Owlpaw would be there too.
Chapter 4 - Owlpaw
Newleaf had arrived. Throughout the afternoon the snow had melted, and it had gotten warmer. It was the evening of the same day Owlpaw and Rosepaw had crossed the ThunderClan border.
Owlpaw swallowed the last bite of rabbit and looked around for Rosepaw. He saw her sitting at the top of a ridge, a short ways from camp. He could tell by the shape of her body and the faint ginger colour he could see that it was her. He raced as fast as he could towards her.
When he reached her, she was staring up at the stars.
"Do you think Spottedbird is up there?" She asked sadly. Spottedbird had been her mother, and her death had shaken her up.
"She would never stop looking after you, she loved you." Owlpaw replied. He put his tail on her flank. "Rabbitkit is probably up there too." Though he hadn't known his brother long enough to get to know him, Owlpaw still felt disappointed he hadn't had the chance to get to know him.
"I believe you." Rosepaw meowed. "You know, there's something I have to tell you."
Owlpaw's eyes lit up with curiousity.
"You're my best friend, you always have been." Rosepaw meowed. "You were there for me, no matter what. When we were kits, and I scratched your ear, when we snuck out of the camp and I fel down a rabbit hole, and you refused to leave me alone, even if it was to get help, when Spottedbird was killed..."
Owlpaw nodded, wondering where this was heading. "You're my best friend too."
Rosepaw dipped her head, then went on. "I'm starting to wonder, if through all those times, we've started to become something more than friends."
Owlpaw felt a jolt, a pleasent jolt, as he realized her words followed exactly where his thoughts had been in the past moon or so. And he realized where his heart lay, and that he wanted no other cat to spend the rest of his life as mates with. "I love you." Owlpaw meowed.
"I love you too." Rosepaw purred. "I'm glad you feel the same way."
"Shall we run?" Owlpaw asked, wanting to stretch his legs but unwilling to go back to camp quite yet.
"Wake up sleepyhead!" Rosepaw purred. nudging Owlpaw.
Owlpaw blinked open his eyes and looked into her playful eyes. The previous night they hadn't returned to camp. They had run and played until they were too tired to put one paw in front of the other. They had curled up on the soft grass and fallen asleep.
"Brownhare and Skycloud will be wondering where we are." Rosepaw purred. "I enjoyed last night though."
"Me too." Owlpaw purred. He sat up and shook out his tawny pelt. "Let's go."
As they padded along the moor, Owlpaw caught scent of a fox. "Fox!" He hissed at Rosepaw.
"We should get out of this area before..." Rosepaw began but was trailed off when the two apprentices came face to face with a young fox, eyeing them hungrily.
The fox lunged at Rosepaw. "No!" Owlpaw hissed, and leapt at the fox and swiped it acoss the face. The fox winced and sent a splash of blood on the moorland. It lunged and bit down on Owlpaw's shouler, or at least attempted to. Owlpaw dodged out of reach of the russet jaws just in time. Rospaw joined in the fight.
This continued on for a while, until Owlpaw and Rosepaw began to getting tired. The fox was gaining the upper hand.
Then Owlpaw saw a flash of white and another of duty brown. Skycloud and Brownhare had come to their rescue, with a whole patrol of warriors behind them.
"Go back to camp!" Skycloud yowled at the apprentices. They didn't protest, and raced back to camp.
"You two did a good job fighting the fox." Hawkstar commented. "It's time you were made warriors." She summoned the clan.
"It's time for Rosepaw and Owlpaw to become warriors. I spoke to Skycloud and Brownhare, and they both agree." Hawkstar meowed. "Rosepaw, Owlpaw, do you proise to uphold the warrior code and defend it, even at the cost of your life?"
"I do." Rosepaw promised.
"I do." Owlpaw mewed.
"Then by the powers of StarClan, Rosepaw, you will now be known as Rosewing. StarClan honours your intelligence and courage. Owlpaw, you will now be known as Owlgaze. StarClan honours your speed and bravery." Hawkstar meowed.
"Rosewing! Owlgaze! Rosewing! Owlgaze!" The clan cheered. After last night, Owlgaze felt like the happiest cat in the world.
Chapter 5 - Berrysong
Berrysong glanced aroud the island. It was her first gathering as a warrior, and she was excited. Only one shadow dampened the mood. Brackenpaw had gotten worse, and no cat, not even Birdsky expected him to make it through, not unless they could get a hold of catmint. After loosing a life, Spiderstar seemed to have recovered a lot, and performed the ceremony of giving a dying apprentice a warrior name, because he more than deserved it. He was Brackenthorn now.
Berrysong had just caught sight of Owlpaw and was about to make her way towards him when she felt Petalflower brush against her.
"Isn't this exciting?" Petalflower meowed excitedly. "We're warriors now! We're equal to almost every cat here! Who are you going to talk to first."
Berrysong shifted her paws uncomfortably. She didn't want her sister do overhear their conversation.
"Oh look, there's Blackpaw, from ShadowClan. I wonder if he's been made a warrior, he was apprenticed about the same time as us." Petalflower meowed. "I'm going to go talk to him, want to come?"
"There's something I need to do first." Berrysong meowed. "Go ahead, I"ll join you later."
"Okay." Petalflower meowed and walked over to Blackpaw. Mow Berrysong was free to go talk to Owlpaw. She padded over to him.
"Hi Owlpaw!" She meowed.
"Actually, I'm not Owlpaw anymore, I'm Owlgaze." Owlgaze said calmly, though Berrysong could see the excitement and pride in his eyes.
"Congratulations! I'm a warrior now too, I'm Berrysong now." She announced proudly.
"Congrats." Owlgaze meowed.
"So, do you really believe Watersplash isn't guilty?" Berrysong whispered.
Owlgaze nodded. "Sagestar is turning into a crazy old badger, any cat can see that. And there's nothing to suggest Spottedbird was killed by Watersplash, same goes for the other murdered cats."
Berrysong nodded in agreement. "Do the rest of WindClan agree with you."
Owlgaze shook his head. He looked upset and as if he was hiding something. Dread filled Berrysong.
"They're not going to attack, are they?" Berrysong whispered, unable to keep the fear out of her mew.
Chapter 6 - Owlgaze
Owlgaze stiffened. What would he do now? He couldn't betray his clan, but could he lie? She seemed so afraid.
Berrysong narrowed her eyes. "You are." She whispered.
"Please, don't tell any cat!" Owlgaze meowed desprately. "I'll be in big trouble with my clan. I don't want to fight!"
Berrysong dipped her head. "I understand."
Owlgaze blinked gratefully at her. "Thanks." The moon was shining down on her black fur, giving it a pretty shine. He admired her spirit, and the way she was willing to keep this a secret.
"So how did Watersplash get in all this trouble?" He asked.
Berrysong opened her mouth to reply, but before she could, Swiftwhisker padded up to her. "COme on, the gathering's about to start."
"Okay, bye Owlgaze!" She meowed, than glanced at Swiftwhisker with a look full of love.
Owlgaze felt a jolt of a strong emotion go through him. Was it jelousy? He watched her and the ThunderClan deputy pad away.
Just then Rosewing padded up to him. "Were you just talking to that ThunderClan furball?" She meowed. "I can't wait to show them the true meaning of revenge! Especially Watersplash!" She began to delve into one of her rants.
Owlgaze looked at her. "Doesn't matter, she didn' say much." Rosewing hated the other clans, and felt a strong loyalty to WindClan. She hated RiverClan for not getting rid of Watersplash properly, ThunderClan for sheltering her, and ShadowClan for "not getting of their lazy tails and forming an alliance with WindClan to get revenge".
Yet Owlgaze loved her. And he realized he loved Berrysong too. How could he love two she-cats at once? And which oone wouldhe choose? Rosewing was the obvious choice. They'd already had a great start to their relationship, thanks to the previous night, and it wouldn't be breaking the warrior code to be with her. Berrysong was already in love with a ThunderClan cat, and it'd be a big risk to be with her.
But if Leafpool and Crowfeather hadn't broken the warrior code, where would the clans be now? He pushed the thought away. If StarClan really havesome need for a special cats, they can easily come up with another way to help them come into being. Besides, what if one of us gets punished like Mapleshade did...
Rosewing broke out of her rant. "You okay, Owlgaze?" She asked.
"Yup." Owlgaze meowed. He was saved from any more conversation from the call to start the gathering.