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[[Category:The Hidden]]
 
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[[Category:Adventure]]

Latest revision as of 03:48, February 24, 2013

This is the sixth episode of The Hidden. Because she took the time to read this, and because she's an all around great person, I dedicate this to Cinders. Cinderdapple is gonna rock this show! 


As she walked away from the cats, Ivyfleet heard a heartbroken wail sound behind her. She didn't stop to see who it was or what had happened. Nothing could be worse then this. Nothing could hurt anyone more than she had been hurt tonight. 

"Ivyfleet! Where are you going?" Fernheart's head emerged from a nearby pile of rocks. Dried blood clotted the fur around her ear, but she looked relatively unscathed save that. 

The silver tabby flicked her ears to show she had heard, but didn't respond. Instead, she broke into a run, the sobs catching in her throat. The tears came like a sudden deluge, much faster than the wind created by her speed could dry them off. Brambles caught at her fur like hungry claws, spurring her to run faster, now in a state of pure delirious terror. She knew she was running in the opposite direction of the Tunnels, going farther and farther into GreenClan's main territory, and farther and farther away from her friends, but she didn't care. Nothing mattered right now, except getting away.


Wind ruffled through Cinderdapple's silvery-gray and white coat as she peeked out from under her pine tree. There was no sign of the two GreenClan brutes, so she crawled out- and was bulldozed into the ground by a cat. 

"What in StarClan?" exclaimed the she-cat, leaping to her paws in half-shock, half-outrage. Then she looked down at the cat, who hadn't even bothered to get back up, and her heart softened. "Hello there. What's wrong?"

The young she-cat lifted her head, revealing a tear-stained face, and a pair of luminous eyes not diminished in beauty by the scar that ran across one of them. "Sorry," she managed to croak, then painfully got to her paws. There was a hollow look on her face, like something had yanked everything soft and tender out of her, leaving her barren and wounded. Cinderdapple's heart immediately longed to care for this hurt little waif, but first she needed to make sure this wasn't a GreenClan follower. She didn't think she was, but over time, Cinderdapple had learned to be careful. Too many bad experiences.

"What's your name?" she tried again softly.

For a second the she-cat appeared to be bewildered, as if she had literally forgotten her own name. Then she stared at her paws. "Ivyfleet. My name's Ivyfleet."

"That's a gorgeous name. I'm Cinderdapple," she introduced herself. "What are you doing here alone?"

"I don't know," Ivyfleet muttered. "I don't know anything anymore."

"I see," Cinderdapple mewed, unfazed, though sympathizing, with Ivyfleet's apparent despair. Laying her tail across the cat's shoulder, she added, "Are you hungry?"

After a brief moment of surprise, then hesitation, her companion gave a weak nod.

"Good. Just a second." Cinderdapple darted back under the pine tree and dragged out a plump squirrel. Her mouth watered at the thought of eating it, but she pushed away her greed. There were two more perfectly good mice waiting for her(though squirrel was her favorite), and this cat needed food more than she did. However, she had a feeling it would take much more then a good meal to save Ivyfleet.

"Thanks," she mumbled, taking a bite and looking up to observe her with slightly more interest. "For everything."

"No problem," assured Cinderdapple, licking a pale gray paw as she watched the she-cat eat. Then, in a more gentle tone, she repeated, "What's wrong?"

Ivyfleet looked like she was about to clam up, but then she hung her head limply in defeat and said, "Everything."

"That's not good at all. Why don't you come under the pine tree with me? It's a lot more safe then standing out here; we don't want any GreenClan cats to find us." She watched the cat carefully to gauge her reaction to GreenClan's name. She was rewarded by a look of disgust and a hasty scramble to get under the pine tree. Good. It appears she isn't one of Viperstar's minions after all.

Crawling in after her, Cinderdapple sat down on the ground, which was hollowed in a bit, to allow more space. Stretching out comfortably on her nest, she gestured to the pile of moss and dried grass she kept handy. Ivyfleet shook her head and sat down, wrapping her tail daintily around her paws. 

"So. Do you feel like talking?"

Ivyfleet sighed, her eyes shimmering with tears that she was obviously fighting to hold back. "Not really. I'm sorry. Do you understand?"

"Yes, I do, little one," she assured her. "How about... would you like it if I sang you a song?"

"A song?" She looked surprised. "Well... Okay. Sure."

"Great," Cinderdapple beamed. Already the melody and lyrics were beginning to form in her mind. She would form the perfect song to comfort this little cat. She was determined to.

Ivyfleet's Song

You said you wouldn't leave me

You said you would stay

You said I'll always be

By your side, come what may

So where is that now?

I want to know

What happened to love?

That used to grow

The stars would shine brighter

When we were together

So where is that now?

Oh where are you now?

My love and my heart

That's what you said

And when we're apart

I might be dead

To shelter from thunder

The storms of sweet May

Yet now I must wonder

If travesties lay

In the depths of your heart

You chose not to uncover

Was I really your lark?

Or was there another

Oh, sweet love on wings you fly

Over hills and over spires

Come on in, don't be shy

Before you said you'd never tire

Ooooh...

So where is that now?

I want to know

What happened to love?

That used to grow

The stars would shine brighter

When we were together

So where is that now?

Oh where are you now?



The last notes echoed on the breeze like glimmers of an unknown world, before fading, leaving only their memory behind. Cinderdapple took a deep breath, wondering if she had been good enough, and turned to Ivyfleet.


Ivyfleet stared speechlessly at the she-cat before her, still enthralled and caught up in the throes of her beautiful voice. She swayed gently back and forth, music still ringing in her ears and in her heart. It had been a soft song, a gentle song, but it had spoken louder then anything ever could.

Cinderdapple glanced at her, and her face fell. "You're crying."

"Am I?" she breathed, raising a paw to her cheeks. Sure enough, it came away wet. "I didn't notice... Oh, Cinderdapple that was beautiful. But how did you know?"

"Know what?" the she-cat asked innocently.

Half-laughing and half-crying, Ivyfleet proceeded to spill out the entire story, starting with her long-lasting crush on Tornadoheart, and ending with the tom's cruel betrayal. Cinderdapple remained silent, nodding here and there, and gasping under her breath at certain parts. Finally she walked over and pressed her pelt against Ivyfleet's. "You poor thing."

Ivyfleet let out a gusty sigh and smiled bravely at her. "I'll learn to live with it. But now I can hardly live with myself. How could I just leave them?"

"It's never too late to put things right," Cinderdapple whispered softly.

"Really? You think so?" A true grin began forming on her mouth. "You're right! My group, my family, needs me." With that, she went racing out from under the pine tree- and stopped short. A sheepish look on her face, she made her way back to Cinderdapple. "Come with me." She said it certainly, without any question. This lonely, kind she-cat needed to join the rebellion, and they needed her.

"Me? I couldn't... I wouldn't be any help."

"Of course you would. Trust me, it's so much better with friends. No one should have to walk alone, even if they do get ditched by a tom named Tornadoheart." Ivyfleet managed to say his name without crying, and mentally gave herself a pat on the back. "You in?"

Cinderdapple put a paw on hers and licked her on the cheek. "If you insist, I guess I'm stuck. Thank you."

"I know this is cheesy, but no, thank you. Now let's go."


"She's still alive?" Strongheart's voice was tinged with disbelief, as if he thought any moment Fallensky might burst out laughing, revealing it was some kind of cruel joke. Silverbreeze's knees felt weak, and she fell against the tom, who seemed pretty unsteady himself.

"How..."

Fallensky's tone was dry. "Do you want to know the specifics, or get her out of here? This cat needs help, or you will lose her."

Reedfur spoke up fearfully. "Okay, okay. What should we do?"

"What can we do?" asked Angelcloud dolefully. "Finchnose was the medicine cat. None of us know much about herbs."

"I might not be as smart as her, but I do know a little bit," Jaywalker offered. "We need a lot of cobwebs, and some large leaves too. If you see any goldenflower or comfrey root, get me that too."

Silverbreeze nodded briskly and took off at a run, not stopping to see who else was following. Sniffing around a rotten log, she gathered a huge wad of cobwebs. Spotting a few familiar golden flowers glowing against the dark of night, she clipped those and dug up some comfrey hurriedly. For once not stopping to shake the mud off her paws and claws, Silverbreeze bounded away, her breath rising in short, desperate gasps. 

"Here. Is this good?" she asked, just as Strongheart deposited a pile of leaves so big she was sure some tree out there had been stripped clean.

Jaywalker nodded hastily and began gathering up the cobwebs from various cats' donations. All eyes were riveted to him as he applied as much pressure as possible to stem the bleeding. Silverbreeze held her breath, watching the tom put ground comfrey root on Finchnose's wounds, then start preparing a bandage.

Suddenly, a cold voice called out from the darkness. "And just what do you think you're doing?" 

Looking up, Silverbreeze's heart stopped. Beside her, Violentclaw tensed and gritted his teeth. A familiar white tom, the one who had taken Tornadoheart away, was standing there, flanked by about a dozen other GreenClan warriors. Under any other circumstances, she wouldn't have been too afraid, but right now, she was terrified. At least Tornadoheart isn't with them. Ivyfleet won't have to- With a painful jolt she remembered that the little silver-and-white tabby was gone. How many more would they have to lose?

"What do you want?" hissed Reedfur defiantly.

Aristo arched an eyebrow. "To arrest you. You all are so dead. If Viperstar is merciful that is. He sometimes prefers torture." 

Just then a spooky voice, reminding Silverbreeze exactly of Viperstar's own lifeless tone, rang out. "Aristo! Get out! I, Viperstar, leader and ruler of GreenClan, will deal with this." Aristo's eyes widened, and he looked around.

"My lord? Where are you?"

The voice held thinly-concealed fury. "That is none of your business, low one. Get out, unless you want to meet the same fate as they. Run and run, till you reach Blood Claw River, and take your troops with you."

Aristo's face was pale with fear as he flicked his tail and led his patrol out of the clearing. Strongheart's eyes widened, but he threw back his head, stood tall, and called in what appeared to be a fearless tone, "Come out, scum of the viper. We're not afraid of you." Though it was a bold-faced lie, Silverbreeze couldn't help feeling impressed that he seemed so determined to stand up to the tom who had caused them so much pain, and her heart gave a faint flutter.

A singsong laugh came floating back to them, and seconds later, two she-cats stepped out of the woods. Silverbreeze gasped as she recognized the smaller of the two. "Ivyfleet?"

Ivyfleet was laughing. "Wow, you really are a good impersonator. You have the gift of the voice." Her eyes turned serious as she faced them though. "I'm sorry guys, but I'm back. Tornadoheart isn't reason enough to give you guys up. And this is Cinderdapple. She helped me realize it, and she wants to join the rebellion."

"Really?" Strongheart said, looking as shocked as Silverbreeze felt. 

"Yeah," Cinderdapple said. "I want to do something against GreenClan, and your friend offered me a way to do so."

"That's great," Silverbreeze said. She rubbed her cheek against Ivyfleet's. "Glad to have you back."

"It's good to be back." Ivyfleet's face was shining. She twined her tail with Silverbreeze's briefly, then gasped and pushed past her. "Finchnose!"

Jaywalker moved back just then, his eyes wide with shock. Blue light was emanating from the small brown she-cat. As they watched in awe, her body lifted slightly into the air and righted itself. Cobalt sparks flew like bits of icy fire, and when her eyes opened, they gleamed a brilliant gold instead of hazel. A deep, rich voice that certainly did not belong to Finchnose, nor even voice-changing Cinderdapple, radiated through her and each one of them. 

"Rest assured that your mission is worthy, as are your hearts. You will accomplish what you set out to accomplish. Now go and meet the clover that grows by the River of Stars."

Finchnose's body dropped limply to the ground, and the light disappeared. Silverbreeze was about to let out a wail, when her friend's head lifted, and she blinked a pair of endearing hazel eyes. "Guys? What happened?"

The answer was a mad stampede, followed by a chorus of whoops and yells, squeezes and hollers, and a bone-jarring group hug. "Don't break her!" exclaimed Silverbreeze, tears of joy running down her cheeks. "Oh, Finchnose, you're alive. They healed you. Thank StarClan."

"And Jaywalker," Snowdrift purred. The tom ducked his head modestly.

"What did they mean by the clover growing by the River of Stars?" asked Reedfur confusedly, his pelt still pressed against Finchnose.

"I don't know about the first part," said Cinderdapple softly. "But the River of Stars is what Blood Claw River used to be called."

"That's the place we told Aristo to go," moaned Aquatail.

"Maybe they'll fall in," Violentclaw offered helpfully. Birdsong cuffed him on the ear.

"Well, that's where they told us to go, so that's where we're going," Silverbreeze decided. Linking her tail with Finchnose's, she said, "Let's go."


Ivyfleet padded at the back of the group, side by side with Cinderdapple. "That was amazing," she whispered. "And thank you so much for coming with me, and all your help."

The she-cat's one green eye and one amber eye were filled with kindness. "Don't worry about it. And remember dear, sometimes the world gets so twisted, and everything gets to spinning so you don't hardly know where you're going. You run away from everything, and keep running, but then you find that everything's all turned around. And before you know it, you're where you belong. You've run away home." 

The End

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