"Can you imagine what that feels like?
To be rejected twice?
To be a loner when all you tried to do was love?
I was born as a punishment, wasn't I?
Then why do I feel like the one being punished?
Leader: Fallowstar:Brown she cat with blue eyes
Deputy: Quailwing:Beige she cat with green eyes
Medicine Cat: Dappleheart:Dappled brown she cat with violet eyes
Warriors: Larkstorm:Blue gray tom with amber eyes
Heathershine Hazel:colored she cat with blue eyes
Lightningtail:Ginger tom with yellow eyes
Firewhisker:Orange tom with yellow stripes and green eyes
Reedlight:White she cat with brown paws
Riverpelt:gray tom with blue eyes
Sparrowflight:Brown she cat with green eyes
Mudpelt:Dark tabby tom with amber eyes
Flintstone Orange and white tom (Dappleheart's brother)
Apprentices:Skypaw:White tom with blue eyes
Dawnpaw:Red she cat with blue eyes
Queens: Silverfeather:Silver she cat with blue eyes
Creamfur:Cream furred she cat
Kits: Maplekit:Orange and white she kit (daughter of Silverfeather)
Applekit:Rose cream she cat with violet eyes (daughter of Creamfur)
Elders: Fernstripe:Tan she cat
Daisyfoot:Cream colored she cat with blue eyes
Mosswhisker:Gray tom with yellow eyes
The half-moon shone above the Mothermouth as the medicine cats made their way inside.
Dappleheart, the ThunderClan medicine cat touched her nose to the Moonstone and closed her eyes. When she opened them, she was standing in the middle of Fourtrees. "Hello? Is anyone there?"
A red furred tom stepped out in front of her. "Greetings, Dappleheart."
Dappleheart bowed her head immideately. "Greetings, Redstar. Is all well with you?"
"Yes, but I have to telll you something important." Redstar meowed
"More like...a warning."
"What is it?" Dappleheart asked.
"A shaded maple will bring doom upon the Clan. StarClan is punishing us." Redstar meowed gravely.
"Punishment?" Dappleheart echoed, confusion showing in her violet eyes.
"A shaded maple of orange and white will be the cause of ThunderClan's plight." The old ThunderClan leader said.
"But ThunderClan hasn't done anything wrong!" Dappleheart recalled the past few moons. All the Clans were enjoying a rare time of peace. Not a claw had been raised, nor a cat had been killed.
"When I was leader, we did a great wrong to a Clan. A Clan that was as mighty and powerful as the rest, but had been driven away due to our selfishness. All the other Clans had been a part of this as well, but they hadn't been as heartless as us." Redstar stated and shook his head. "It is too shameful to speak of."
He continued, "Then one night, our previous leader Vinestar came to me in my dream and told me that ThunderClan would be punished one day. That time has come."
"What will happen now?"
"We must wait and watch, Dappleheart."
"Come on Silverfeather, you can do it" Dappleheart encouraged the queen as she struggled to give birth.
Silverfeather had grown very weak. She had caught greencough, the most deadliest infection the Clan had ever known. Few cats ever survived it, and not many of them were expectant queens. Dappleheart knew that Silverfeather had a greater possibility of dying.
"Creamfur I will need your help." Dappleheart meowed to the older queen. Creamfur nodded. "You can count on me, Dappleheart."
Silverfeather was very feverish. She let out a horrible cough, and her whole body twisted in pain. Dappleheart sat down beside her, and gently stroked the she-cat's belly. Dappleheart shook her head. Greencough had weakened Silverfeather, and the medicine cat knew that there was a great chance that neither her or the kits could survive.
A spasm rippled through Silverfeather, as an orange and white she kit was born. Blood pooled around the queen's paws.
"A she-kit." Dappleheart announced.
"Maple...kit" Silverfeather whispered.
"Should I take the kit into my nest?" Creamfur asked.
"Yes. she needs to be away from the infection." Dappleheart replied and gently placed Maplekit next to Creamfur, and the older queen curled her tail around the tiny body.
"Dappleheart?" Flintstone's voice sounded from outside, "How is Silverfeather?" He demanded.
Dappleheart stepped outside. "She gave birth to one she-kit. The kit is fine, but Silverfeather..."
Flintstone rushed inside. "Silverfeather?"
"Flint...stone" The queen's voice was barely a sigh. Her body was hot with fever and her eyes were streaming. Her pelt, once beautiful was now smeared with blood. She was dying.
"Isn't...our daughter..beautiful?" Silverfeather meowed, her breaths slowing down with each word, "I'd like to name....her Maplekit."
"Save your energy, Silverfeather. You have to get better." Flintstone tried to keep his voice steady, "Please."
"I'm sorry we won't...raise..her together." Silverfeather mewed sadly.
"Don't say that. You're going to be okay, my love." Flintstone whispered, his voice dangerously wobbling. "What will I do without you..."
"I'm so sorry....my dear. StarClan...needs me now." Silverfeather mewed weakly and her flanks heaved with each breath. Her breathing got slower and slower.
"Silverfeather, no! You can't leave me!" Flintstone yowled with anguish and threw himself on her. But it was too late. Silverfeather's whole body stilled forever, with the departure of her spirit.
"No...it-it can't be true..." Flintstone's voice cracked. Dappleheart laid her tail tip across his shoulders. "I'm so sorry, Flintstone." She meowed. "Everything will be okay, dear brother."
He shook her tail away. "No! Nothing will be okay ever again! Silverfeather's dead, and my life has lost all of it's meaning." He turned to storm outside, but Dappleheart stopped him.
"Flintstone, what about Maplekit? She needs a father. Don't let her lose both of her parents."
"She's the one responsible for Silverfeather's death. If it weren't for her, she'd still be alive." He spat.
"Flintstone, listen to me. Greencough has taken Silverfeather's life, not this helpless sweet little kit. You can't blame her for Silverfeather's death."
Flintstone just snarled and headed out of the nursery, without even glancing at Maplekit.
Maplekit scurried out of the nursery with Applekit at her side. "I'm so glad Creamfur let us out of the nursery!" She meowed cheerfully, "I was so bored in there."
Applekit nodded agreement. "Let's play 'First Hunt'!" She said.
"Okay!" Maplekit nodded. The two kits dropped into a crouch and pretended to stalk their prey.
Maplekit sniffed the air. "I smell vole! It smells plump and fresh."
"I smell a nice juicy mouse!" Applekit mewed. They approached a pile of pinecones, and swiftly pounced on two of them.
Maplekit gripped a pinecone in her mouth and Applekit did the same. "Our first hunt was successful!" Maplekit said, her voice muffled by the 'prey'. The kits placed their pinecones in a neat pile. "The kits and elders will have a wonderful meal!" Maplekit meowed.
She turned around to see Flintstone return from border patrol. "Let's show my dad our prey!" She purred.
The two approached Flintstone with their pinecones back in their mouths. "Daddy! Look! We caught a vole and a mouse!" She mewed.
Flintstone just grumbled. "Can't you see that I've just come back from border patrol?" He said, his voice as cold as ice.
"But look at the vole! Applekit and I-"
"I don't have time for your little games. I'm a busy warrior. Don't bother me again." With that, he turned and entered the warrior den.
"I don't know why Daddy doesn't like me...." Maplekit's shoulders drooped. Applekit pressed against her. "It's okay. Don't worry about it too much. " She laid her tail across Maplekit's flank. "Come, lets go eat. I'm starving!"
"Come on you two. Time to get some sleep." Creamfur meowed. "Let me groom your pelts." Maplekit and Applekit obeyed, and were soon ready for their night. Creamfur tucked her tail around them.
Just then Mudpelt, Applekit's father came in. He licked Creamfur's cheek and nuzzled Applekit lovingly.
"Daddy, that tickles!" Applekit mewed. She batted her soft paws at his chest. "See? I'm going to be a great warrior. This is called the double paw battling move!" She beamed proudly.
"A great warrior? No, my sweet kit, you are going to be the best warrior!" Mudpelt purred.
Maplekit's heart sank as she watched them. She then thought about her father. Flintstone never came to check on her or tuck her in. He never told her that she would be the best warrior. No, he barely even talked to her. Whenever he did it was usually out of anger.
I'll make Flintstone proud someday. Maplekit vowed as she closed her eyes.
"Maplekit, from this moment on, you will be known as Maplepaw. Reedlight, the whole Clan knows your great skills in battle and your courage. Do your best to pass on these qualities on to Maplepaw."
"Maplepaw! Applepaw!" The two newly named apprentices fluffed out their chest fur in pride, as their Clanmates roared their names.
Maplepaw scanned the crowd for Flintstone. He was sitting in the corner, his mouth in a straight line. He didn't meet her eyes. She felt hurt, but suddenly a pelt pressed against hers, and she forgot about Flintstone. "Oh Maplepaw, I'm so proud of you. Your mother would have loved to see this." Creamfur meowed. Maplepaw glanced up at her foster mother's eyes, and she saw love and pride shine in them.
Reedlight came forward. "Maplepaw, are you ready for your first day of training?" She said in a voice that made Maplepaw like her instantly.
The young orange and white she cat nodded. "I'm so excited!"
"We'll go on a tour of the territory today. Tomorrow I will be giving you your first hunting lesson." Reedlight meowed. She led Maplepaw out of camp.
"We'll start with Sunningrocks. Follow me!" Reedlight guided her apprentice along the way.
When they reached, Maplepaw's eyes widened. "Wow..." She watched as a bee buzzed into a flower gracefully. Colorful butterflies painted the leaves with their wings. The river sparkled in the sunlight, as it cascaded over the stones. "It's...it's like a paradise!" She meowed.
Reedlight purred. "I know. Out of all of the ThunderClan territory, this is my favorite spot."
"Yeah, enjoy it while you have it, Thundercats!" A voice meowed and a small scent of fish hit Maplepaw.
The two turned around to see a pair of RiverClan cats. A slim, pale tabby she cat and her apprentice, a handsome dappled gray tom with stunning blue eyes. He looked at her, making Maplepaw's heart jump. What am I doing? He's not from my Clan!
Reedlight faced the pale tabby. "Greetings, Paleflight." She meowed respectfully, although Maplepaw sensed an air of sarcasm in her mentor's voice as Reedlight continued, "What brings you so close to our territory?"
Paleflight smirked, "It's not going to be your territory for long."
"Well, it's not your territory right now, so I suggest that you stop interrupting our training session." Reedlight snapped.
"Temper, temper..." Paleflight said, shaking her head. She turned to her apprentice. "Come Darkpaw. Let me show you another part of RiverClan territory." As they turned to leave, Maplepaw noticed that they both were looking very thin.
Maybe the prey isn't running as smoothly in RiverClan, now that the river is almost frozen. She couldn't help feeling a pang of pity for them.
Reedlight's voice broke into her thought. "We still have a lot of the territory to see. I'll show you Tallpines next." Maplepaw began following her mentor, reluctance in her pawsteps.
Maplepaw flopped into her nest. Reedlight had shown her the entire territory, that day, and had even taught some battle moves. They had been practicing for what seemed like a moon, and Maplepaw was relieved to be in her warm nest.
Applepaw came in a few minutes later, Skypaw at her side. The two of them were talking and giggling.
"Hey Applepaw. Hey Skypaw." Maplepaw meowed.
"Hey Maplepaw!" Applepaw meowed cheerfully, "Do you want to hear about my day?"
"Sure." Maplepaw was glad Applepaw hadn't asked about her day. She didn't have the energy to tell the whole story.
So Applepaw began narrating her first day of training.
"...and Skypaw saved me! If it weren't for him, I'd be lying in the medicine cat den right now." Applepaw finished, twining her tail with Skypaw's.
"Wow..." Maplepaw smiled. "That's great."
The two didn't seem to notice her comment. They had already walked to Applepaw's nest, tails still intertwined.
A while later, all the apprentices were settled down in their nests. Applepaw and Skypaw were chatting with each other.
Maplepaw was only half listening to their conversation. She was still thinking about that handsome gray apprentice. The way he had looked at her...how thin he and his mentor were...
She snapped out of her thoughts suddenly. He's in a different Clan! Don't think about him! So what if RiverClan is short of prey? It's none of my buisness!
But the more she tried to force that thought out of her mind, the more she concentrated on it.
And finally, the inevitable feeling washed over Maplepaw.
l wish I could help them...
Coming Soon :D