Fourth in the Fairytail series!
Allegiances: ThunderClan- before
Leader: Redstar- pure white she-cat with a red face.
Deputy: Hawkflight- black tom
Medicine Cat: Pinebird- light brown she-cat with blue eyes. Apprentice, Dawnpaw.
Bluetail- light grey tom with a white-tipped tail, blue eyes.
Sunwhisker- golden brown tabby tom with amber eyes
Mouseclaw- dark brown tabby tom with white paws
Mistfur- pale blue-grey she-cat with amber eyes
Whitemoon- cream-colored tom with a white underbelly
Briarfur- black she-cat with grey patches, yellow eyes
Leafstorm- brown-and-white tom
Brackenstripe- ginger-and-grey tom
Skystorm- dark grey she-cat
Tigerfur- brown tabby tom with dark eyes
Dawnpaw- pale ginger she-cat with blue eyes
Silvermoon- silver she-cat, excpecting Hawkflight's kits
Oaktail- black tom
Vinewhisker- tortoiseshell she-cat with amber eyes
Medicine Cat: Pinebird- light brown she-cat with blue eyes
Sunwhisker: Golden brown tabby tom with amber eyes
Whitemoon- cream-colored tom with a white underbelly and only one ear
Leafstorm: brown-and-white tom with no tail
Mistfur- pale blue-grey she-cat with amber eyes ( Mother to Poppykit- ginger she-cat with amber eyes, and Frostkit- dark grey tom with amber eyes)
Vinewhisker- old tortoiseshell she-cat with amber eyes
Blue- light grey tom with a white-tipped tail, blue eyes.
Briar- black she-cat with grey patches, yellow eyes.
Redstar held back and watched her warriors stream for the entrance. The night smelled of flowers and crickets chirped in the shadows. So peaceful… She closed her eyes, enjoying the moment while it lasted.
" Redstar?" a deep meow came from behind her. The leader swung around and saw her deputy, Hawkflight, nodding to her. " Are you coming?"
" Yes," she replied, shaking out her white pelt. Hawkflight had been her deputy for countless seasons. He's the best deputy any cats could wish for. ThunderClan is lucky to have him. She ducked under the thorn entrance, leaving a few tufts of ginger fur on it. Her most distinguishing feature was her face, that was strangely colored red.
" Rosestar!" Hawkflight's sharp meow jolted her out of her thoughts. I'm becoming old. My thoughts wander. She narrowed her eyes at her deputy. He gestured impatiently to the waiting warriors. " They're ready. Should we cross now?"
" Wait," Redstar squeezed through the crowd and ran her gaze over all her warriors. A pitiful sight. If ShadowClan knew what was coming to attack them, they'd laugh. Her Clan was failing. Nine warriors, of which six were toms and three were she-cats. Silvermoon, another she-cat, was still in camp. Her kits were due soon. Even Pinenose and Dawnpaw are fighting. The two medicine cats were whispering, casting dark looks aorund them. My Clan. If we do not survive the night, I have tried hard. StarClan, hear my prayer. Help us. Through these troubles time I have never given up my faith in you. She titled her head back to look at the bright stars. Redstar sighed. She flicked her tail, and all her warriors streaked across the Thunderpath. They were headed for ShadowClan territory, which they would claim. Redstar watched her once-proud warriors head into battle. Weariness dragged at her pelt, Redstar barely knew how she managed to run after them. We will win! The paw steps of her warriors pounded on the earth. Suddenly, a howl sliced through the air. It was followed by the musty scent ShadowClan that rolled in from the marshes. Redstar halted in astonishment. How did ShadowClan knew we were here already? Redstar warriors had barely crossed the Thunderpath. She spotted one dark-furred tom grappling with Brackenstripe. The grey-and-ginger tom was fighting bravely. Redstar was about to haul the ShadowClan warrior off, but not before he leapt and bit Brackenstripe's throat. Redstar howled in rage as Brackenstripe fell dead. No, no no! She raced over to his dead body and glared at his killer. The tom bared his teeth mockingly.
" How did you know?" Redstar growled. The tom shrugged, eyes glinting.
" You don't want to find out," with that, he plunged back into the mass of writhing pelts. Stunned, Redstar bent her head down to bury her muzzle in Brackenstripe's fur. You will not be forgotten, I promise. Yowling in rage, Redstar grabbed the nearest ShadowClan tom and shook him viciously. He shrieked, swiping at her face. As she ducked, he delivered a blow to her head with his other paw. Redstar stumbled in surprise. That's a ThunderClan move! Then, she found herself staring into the face of Hawkflight.
"You!" Redstar snarled, kicking him away in disgust. Hawkflight recovered, eyes alight with triumph.
"Me," he agreed, jumping onto her back. Redstar bucked wildly, but she couldn't throw him off. Hot pain burned up her shoulders as blood welled from his claws. Redstar threw herself onto her back, but Hawkflight jumped free. He placed a paw on her exposed belly. Holing the other up into the moonlight, he unsheathed his stygian claws. Redstar gulped.
" Help! Skystorm! Tigerfur! Mouseclaw!" she yowled out the names of her finest warriors.
" They're all dead," Hawkflight snarled, baring his fangs to reveal bloodstained teeth.
" You killed them?" Redstar whispered hoarsely. Hawkflight let out a horrible purr.
" Right as always, Redstar," his face twisted wryly. Another warrior came by his head and whispered in his ear. Hawkflight nodded eagerly and the cat left.
" No survivors!" Hawkflight yowled after him. Redstar writhed between Hawkflight's claw, but could not break free.
" What do you mean?" she gasped.
" They're attacking the camp. You're going to die, so I might as well explain everything," Hawkflight rasped.
" You're mate is in the camp! Silvermoon!" Redstar choked. Hawkflight shrugged.
" Nothing can stand in the way of me and power." Bile rose into Redstar's throat.
" You can kill your own mate, your own kits, for leadership," Redstar whispered. Rage erupted inside of her. " You won't have my Clan!" she lunged forwards, teeth snapping at his throat. Redstar had caught him by surprise. Using a few well-aimed blows, she managed to drive him backwards. But Hawkflight was fast. He spun around, hooked Redstar's legs out from under her, then poised to strike her throat.
" Redstar!" a desperate cry came from across the marshes. Dawnpaw, the little medicine cat apprentice, threw herself at Hawkflight in an attempt to save her leader. Hardly moving a whisker, Hawkflight killed her with a single blow to the neck. Horror and grief rose up inside of Redstar.
" I conspired with Brightfrost of ShadowClan. Of course, she doesn't know I'm killing cats. But I convinced her to help me," Hawkflight snarled. " Now I will be leader of ThunderClan!"
" You monster. You. Sick. Monster. I will kill you, and send you where you truly belong," Redstar snarled.
" You can't kill me, old cat," Hawkflight whispered dangerously.
" Then I'll die trying!" Redstar howled, leaping for his throat. His own paw flashed out for hers. In that one moment, time seemed to slow down. Redstar saw his fur ruffle in the breeze, his claw extend, his eyes narrow. She saw her own paw move towards her throat, saw a gash open where she hit it. Then Redstar fell back. Hawkflight tumbled to his side, thumping onto the ground so her eyes met his. He struggled to stand up, but didn't succeed. Redstar felt feeling seep from her body.
" I'm …not dead ...yet," Hawkflight choked.
" I …. stopped you," Rosestar managed to say. " The cats… you killed… have been avenged tonight."
" Not for long!" Hawkflight's eyes blazed. " I will be back, believe me." With that, Hawkflight's eyes dimmed and his head fell back. Rosestar rolled onto her side, facing the pine forest. I want to die facing my home. Her eyes began to close. I tried, but I destroyed ThunderClan. StarClan, all I want, all I want, is another chance...
Poppykit peered over the edge of her rock. The Thunderpath lay ahead of her, silent and forbidding. She blinked once, then darted back to report to her brother. He was crouched in the shadow of a dark holly bush, watching her out of slitted amber eyes. Poppykit gulped. She'd only agreed to cross the Thunderpath to please her brother. " All clear," she squeaked. Frostkit's eyes gleamed. He trotted out of the shadows, shaking out his thick pelt. He seems to like shadows, Poppykit observed, noticing how he pressed close to the rock as if to hide in it. Poppykit approached him warily. Sometimes Frostkit would snap, but sometimes he'd welcome her with a purr. Frostkit jerked his head towards the Thunderpath.
" You go first."
" What?" Poppykit yelped. " No way!"
" I'll push you over," Frostkit threatened. Anything but that. Muttering naughty curses under her breath, Poppykit picked her way through the long grass and crouched by the Thunderpath. It smelled foul. Poppykit gagged as she spotted a dead frog squashed flat in the middle. Monsters don't even bother to eat their prey. How silly! Poppykit crouched down, looking at her ginger paws. They were small compared to the rest of her body. But Mama says they'll grow. I wish I could be half as pretty as her. Poppykit mused. "Poppykit!" Frostkit yowled in impatience. " Cross already!" Poppykit shook her head. I daydream too much. She narrowed her amber eyes and focused on the distant horizon. There was nothing. Taking a massive breath, Poppykit launched herself across the surface. She winced as her soft kit-paws hit the hard surface. Suddenly, a foul stench filled the air, accompanied by a ferocious howl. Poppykit halted in shock, her paw pads ripping and bleeding. A massive yellow monster was speeding towards her. It's bright. The random thought popped into her head and Poppykit nearly purred in amusement. " Poppykit! Run!" Frostkit howled. She jerked back to the present. Poppykit fled, tail streaming out behind her. She tumbled onto the grass on the other side, wincing as her shoulder hit the hard surface. The monster sped past while throwing up filthy water that splattered onto her fur. Poppykit spat in disgust, the thrill of adventure running through her. She called out to Frostkit's small white shape on the other side.
" You try now!"
" No thanks! Mistfur won't thank you for getting dirty. See you!" Frostkit waved his tail, then disappeared. Poppykit halted in outrage. The mouse-heart! He was such a coward! Trembling with indignation, Poppykit craned her neck to see her brother. He was nowhere to be seen. Poppykit peered into the Thunderpath, ducking back as another monster sped past. A black one came past, then another, then another. I'd be trampled! Groaning in dismay, Poppykit looked around her at the surroundings. She was in the legendary forest of ThunderClan, their home before ShadowClan had driven them out. Her mother, Mistfur, had told her about the legendary battle. Redstar had led her warriors to ShadowClan, but they had been betrayed. Redstar and her deputy were found dead beside the Thunderpath. I've never seen their graves. No one knew who the traitor was, either. Poppykit looked at the forest around her again. It's pretty nice. The tall pines rose up so high they seemed to touch the clouds. Tiny flowers blossomed in the untamed, long grass. Poppykit's whiskers twitched at the strange scents around her. Who says I can't explore? Tail-tip twitching, Poppykit pushed her muzzle into the grass. It bent and crackled beneath her paws. A ladybug zipped across her path, so Poppykit thumped down her paws to squish it. She missed. Frustrated, Poppykit pursued it. But she quickly lost it in the long stems and sat back on her haunches, snout wrinkled in dismay. A loud hiss startled her. Poppykit jumped, hearing her claws hit hard stone. The stone was ashen-colored, dotted with numerous holes and cracks. From one of them slid a long brown adder. The adder narrowed its flat eyes and flicked out a long tongue. So this is a snake. It's not that scary. In fact, it's kind of cute. Curious, Poppykit flicked a stone towards it. The snake reeled back, then vanished back into its cave. Snakerocks. The name flashed into her head. This most host a lot of snakes. I'm not going to pry. Poppykit vanished back into the grass. She thought she was milling around aimlessly, but somehow her paws took her to a small dip in the land. What's this? She scampered down, ducking into a tangle of thorn bushes. A kind of wild excitement puled through her. Poppykit looked around her and spotted a large clearing full of debris. She shuddered, spotting crowfood scattered all around the place. There was a clump of brambles that might have been a den. A sharp rocked jutted out from the earth, like a giant snout pointing at the sky. Camp! The word exploded in her head. It's possible. Was this the ThunderClan camp? Frostkit will be so jealous! Poppykit held her tail high in excitement. She spotted a groove in the ground that led to a cave. Curiosity getting the better of her, Poppykit darted inside. She wrinkled her snout. It stinks! Mold crept along the walls. Poppykit's legs brushed something soft. It was a nest. Suddenly feeling tired, Poppykit curled up inside of it and fell asleep.
That night, she had a strange dream. Watching from the den, she saw a white cat with a red face jump up onto the snout-rock and call out. Lots of cats came to sit in front of it, so Poppykit joined them. To her astonishment, all the cats looked up at her and she found herself on the snout-rock beside the white she-cat. The cat's eyes twinkled and she vanished. " Come back!" Poppykit called, but not one listened. The cats swarmed up the rock and clustered around her, chanting out something that sounded like ' Poppy-Star-Poppy-Star'. Something hard hit Poppykit's face and she was jolted out of her dream.
" Wake up Poppykit! You are in so much trouble!"
" But I was only exploring! It was Frostkit that left me on the other side of the Thunderpath!" Poppykit complained as her mother dragged her across the camp by her scruff. Mistfur threw her onto the grass in front and scowled.
" Frostkit was the only one with responsibility! I suggest you be quiet and come with me," she hissed, eyes flashing. Poppykit put on her most sullen face and met her mother's amber gaze.
" I don't want to! I want to stay here," Poppykit demanded, stomping her foot on the grass. Mistfur growled and cuffed Poppykit's ear. She gasped at the unfamiliar ring and pawed at it frantically.
" You will come with me!" Mistfur hissed again.
"It's nicer here," Poppykit begged " why can't we just come back? What's there to drive us away?"
" It's complicated Poppykit," Mistfur dropped her gaze. Poppykit darted in front of her and nudged Mistfur's muzzle.
" Why?" she asked. Mistfur sighed and turned to lap at her flank.
" Many reasons. ShadowClan drove us out, for one, and our honorable leader ande deputy both died. We have no leader," Mistfur explained. Oh… Poppykit had heard the legend of the famous Redstar and her deputy Hawkflight. They tried to stop ShadowClan, but failed. A sudden grief rose up in Poppykit's heart, but she puhsed it away. Mistfur got up and padded away, jerking her head to Poppykit to follow. She joined her mother, whiskers twitching warily. Is she still mad? " I am still mad," Mistfur said suddenly, swinging her head to look at Poppykit. " Your father will decide a suitable punishment for you when we reach camp." Whitemoon? Oh no. Her father was a strict and rigid as a rock. He'll make me listen to Vinewhisker's stories. Or at the worst, he'll make me miss my apprentice ceremony! Panicking, she trotted close to Mistfur and gazed at her out of wide eyes.
" Please-" Poppykit began, but Mistfur cut her off.
" Save your woe for later, Poppykit. It's not fooling me," Mistfur grumbled. She crouched by the Thunderpath, watching intently for monsters. Soon, she flicked her tail and raced across. Poppykit followed, but her paws were heavy with dread at what awaited her in camp. My father hates me. Whitemoon was always scolding her. Feeling sullen, Poppykit sulked behind her mother as they headed into camp. It was in an abandoned Twoleg nest. The stone was smooth and slippery. Towering walls boxed in the room. A series of jagged ledges led upwards, but they were to high for Poppykit to climb. There were some odd bits and pieces that had served as great games when she was younger. Or before Frostkit started thinking he was too good for me. Poppykit thought bitterly.