|Book 1 of The Shadows Trilogy|
|Surrounded by Shadows||Succeded by: |
Shattered by Shadows
- 1 A/N
- 2 Fans
- 3 Blurb
- 4 Allegiances
- 5 Prologue - Mistheart's P.O.V
- 6 Chapter 1
- 7 Chapter 2
- 8 Chapter 3
- 9 Chapter 4 - The Monster's P.O.V
- 10 Chapter 5
- 11 Chapter 6
- 12 Chapter 7
- 13 Chapter 8 - The Monster's P.O.V
- 14 Chapter 9
- 15 Chapter 10
- 16 Chapter 11
- 17 Chapter 12
- 18 Chapter 13
- 19 Epilogue - The Monster's P.O.V
- Blood and Gore Warning
It has been three days.
Three days since we found out that the other clans had been destroyed.
Three days since the Shadow Wall closed in on us.
Darkness falls over the trees, sealing the way out of Thunderclan territiory. The other clans have fallen; Shadowclan, Windclan, Riverclan, Skyclan. Now it's their turn. Each night, an evil being kills one cat. Each day, they turn into one of the cats. Pinemist can't trust anyone, but knows he has to stop them. Will he be able to find the cat, or will the clans become nothing more than a memory?
Acting Leader: Sunheart - a golden tom with blue eyes
Acting Deputy: Smallflight - a quick dappled she-cat with hazel eyes
Med. Cat: Hollowpaw - a golden tabby she-cat with hazel eyes and a white belly
Warriors: Swanbelly - a white she-cat with amber eyes
Bluestripe - a blue-gray tom with gray eyes
Foxpelt - red tom with dark green eyes
Mousenose - a golden tabby tom with amber eyes
Plumshade - a calico she-cat with dazzling blue eyes
Oakstalk - a mottled brown tom with brown eyes
Iceshadow a white she-cat with black socks and green eyes
Pinemist - a brown tabby tom with darker brown stripes and forest green eyes app: Goldenpaw
Apprentices: Goldenpaw - a small wiry golden she-cat with bright amber eyes
Prologue - Mistheart's P.O.V
The stars have gone silent. They've turned their back on us.
They don't care whether we live or die. We're just pawns to them.
I've seen my four kits. Dead. My mate? We found his belly ripped out of him, lying just by Riverclan's prey pile. His organs had been spread all over camp.
I cried for days.
"Just kill me already!" I screech aloud. I can't take it anymore. You know, this must be fun for that........................... that monster.
Watching a cat lonely slowly go mad at the loss of her family.
Then I see it.
The thing that ensured that we wouldn't escape.
The Shadow Wall.
It stretches all along our territory, and into the sky, trapping us here in eternal darkness until we die. I feel the rage bubble up inside of me. Then, I collapse.
I can't take it anymore. It's driven me mad.
"Would you like to be free from this?"
I hear the voice. It seems to have come from everywhere, yet nowhere.
"Would you like to be free from this?" It repeats.
I realize what it means. "Yes!" I say, without a second thought. I can't bear being alone anymore.
Without my clanmates.
Without my family.
"Okay then." The voice replies. I can hear a hint of amusement in its mew.
I see the shadows swirl around, taking the formation of a cat. The monster.
Instead of running, I stand still as it rakes its shadow claws down my belly. I don't care.
Soon I will be reunited with my family.
I collapse, and drift out of my body. I hear kit mewls. My kits! I think, racing towards the voice.
But just as the shadow, it seems to be coming from everywhere, and yet nowhere. Once I realize this, I collapse again, wishing I could change my mind. But I couldn't.
As I hear the monster laugh so cruelly, I know I will slowly go mad.
It has been three days.
Three days since we figured out that the other clans had been destroyed.
Three days since the Shadow Wall closed in on us.
Two days since we found Brightstar's mangled body up on the Talltree.
One day since we found the body Mintbreeze, her head missing.
And today, we found Lostwhisker's blood spattered on the camp ground. There was no body then.
This needs to stop.
Shadowclan is gone. Windclan is gone. Skyclan is gone.
And three days ago, Riverclan was gone too.
We need to stop the monster.
I know it's posing as one of us. To it, this is just a game. Now, I can't trust anybody.
I hate it.
I hate knowing that each night, one of my friends will be found dead in the morning, and there's nothing I can do to save them. I hate knowing that one of my friends might be the monster. I hate knowing that I might be next.
My stomach rumbles. I need to hunt something. If there is anything left to hunt, anyways. All of the prey here is gone or almost about to be. I sigh, and try to find some food anyways. Please Starclan, if you're listening, help me find something! I plead silently. Then I smell something. Squirrel! I faintly se a figure nibbling on what looks to be acorns. I crouch, then pounce, my claws unsheathed. I slam my head into the tree, but feel my claws on something soft. I sink my teeth into the squirrel, and give Starclan thanks. I look down. It is a big juicy squirrel, large enough to feed three cats. I think I'll share this with Plumshade and Goldenpaw. I think. There was no elders or kits, so we could eat whatever we caught. I chose to share my prey with my sister and apprentice.
I walk back, seeing Plumshade and Goldenpaw already in a corner. I walk over. They both look depressed, Goldenpaw's fur tangled. "Want to share?" I ask them, and suddenly their eyes brighten. I sit down, and we start devouring it.
Once we finish, I can tell that it's night. The shadows seem more alive than ever. The monster is coming. I see Goldenpaw shivering. "Will you protect me?" She squeaks. "Of course," I mew softly. We head to the warriors den, and I lay down, anxiety worming in my belly of what was to come.
I wake up with a mixture of dread and relief. I am alive! But the I realize something.
Now we will know who died.
Now we will know who will live with the grief.
I trudge out as Sunheart, our acting leader, call out, "All cats meet under the Talltree!"
In the darkness, I see cats filing out from all dens; Smallflight, our acting deputy, Hollowpaw, who wasn't old enough to even get her medicine cat name before Mintbreeze died. I see Goldenpaw follow Plumshade out of our den with a sigh of relief. They were alive!
"Cats of Thunderclan," I hear Sunheart say as we sit down. "It is with great sadness that I must announce who has died."
Oh no. Now we will know.
"Swanbelly was found last night." Sunheart confirmed, and he pointed his tail to a devastating sight. A bloody mound of white fur was laying at the entrance of camp. I race over and see that it is Swanbelly's body. Her eyes were a beady black, staring into oblivion.
But where were her legs?
I regretted asking that question as soon as I saw four bloody sticks hanging over the entrance. I look away, not wanting to witness anymore.
Why did Starclan let this happen to us?
All of us grieved. Iceshadow had it the hardest, though. They were sisters. And it was so soon after losing Brightstar and Mintbreeze. All day she cried in grief.
My head starts throbbing. It must be from the spectacular crash I made when catching the squirrel. I head my way over to the medicine den, where Hollowpaw is anxiously sorting herbs.
"Marigold, Dock," she muttered to herself. "No, that's not right, because that's Dock. Then what is this? Argggh!" She scratched the dirt floor in frustration, then noticed me. "Oh! Sorry, didn't see you, Pinemist. I was just sorting herbs. What do you need?" She walked over to me.
"My head is just hurting," I explain. "Nothing bad."
Hollowpaw sniffed at my head, trying to find what was wrong. Soon, she said, "There's nothing wrong, but if it hurts, have some poppy seeds." She slid some red berries towards me, then quickly swiped them back. "Wait, those are Deathberries! At least, I think. Here are the poppy seeds." She then gave me some small seeds. I lapped them up, and the pain eased. "You should probably go rest."
I nod, then walk out.
I need to find the monster.
No more excuses.
Tonight, I'll stay up and see who transforms. Transforms into shadows to kill someone. Like Swanbelly.
But for now, I'd better rest.
I can tell it is night again.
I hope I can find the monster tonight.
I hope I can kill it.
I hope I can save my clanmates tonight.
I hope I can free them.
I'm standing guard in the center of camp.
No one knows.
They would say it's too dangerous.
I hope they're wrong.
The shadow start swirling around. This isn't normal. That always means something bad.
One of the the shadows twists into a jagged point.
It shoots straight at me, piercing my chest.
Then the nightmares come.
Chapter 4 - The Monster's P.O.V
I slink out of my nest, ready to kill another cat.
I walk out of the den, fur rippling as I morph into darkness. Into shadows.
I stop as I see a brown cat laying outside, surrounded by my shadows.
Someone tried to catch me again. Well, they know the consequences.
Who should I choose this time? I wonder. Hmm, how about the red cat. And maybe..... that ginger cat. No, how about the black and white cat.
I smirk as I order my shadows to seep into the dens.
Don't make it too bad this time, I think. My shadows stop, as if listening to me. Just make sure they know the brown cat was the cause of this.
The darkness continues to seep into the dens. I walk over to the brown cat. His markings have shifted to a black color, and he seemed to be shivering. A side effect to my nightmares.
With the job done, I stalk back into my nest, my fur changing back to the golden color I've taken on.
I'm almost done.
I wake up shivering. I am by the prey stump, in the middle of camp.
I have no idea how I got here.
I remember those horrible nightmares. They- no. I'm not going to think about them.
Or else they'll come back.
I look around, and see everyone is out of their nests. Goldenpaw, Sunheart, Smallflight-
"Where is Plumshade?" I call out frantically. No. She can't be.
She can't have been killed.
I look to the Talltree.
But she was. The words slip into my brain as I see her body laying next to Foxpelt's on the roots of the tree. I race over. Her throat has been slashed, and her eyes the same black as Swanbelly.
As all the others.
As I'm about to crumple with grief, I see something move. I look.
Her mouth has moved slightly.
I immediately start furiously licking her.
But won't be for long if I leave her here.
"I need to carry you to Hollowpaw." I tell her. She keeps staring into nothingness, then slowly moves her head towards me. Her face is contorted with pain.
"It's............ to........ late," She whispers, her voice rattling with every word.
"No it's not-" I say, but she cuts me off.
"I will always....................... love you.............. brother." She tells me. I see a fire light in her eyes as she says, "Beware......................... the golden.............. cat." Her head falls back. Her chest moves one last time, then is still.
And there he is, Oakstalk, staring at me, shaking with fury.
"You killed them."
"Wait, what?" I ask, confused. I would never kill my own sister!
I feel tears forming in my eyes.
"What I mean," Oakstalk glares at me. I can see the grief in his eyes. We both lost siblings. "Is last night, Starclan came to me. They said, 'The pine must fall.' You have the word pine in your name."
Everyone gasped. Starclan? No, I couldn't believe this. They left us to the shadows.
Why would they help us now?
"I am not the monster," I say. "Th-The shadows messed with you're head. All I did was stay up last-"
"Wait." I can see Sunheart pad into the clearing, eyes narrowed at me. "You stayed up last night?"
I keep hating this more and more.
"Y-Yes. I wanted to catch the monster." I say.
Sunheart sucked in a breath. "Oh no,"
"'Oh no' what?" I ask curiously, knowing I won't like the answer.
"When a cat stays up all night, the shadows get irritated," he mewed solemly. "And when it gets irritated, bad things happen. Like how two cats died here instead of one."
So this was my fault. I'm so sorry Plumshade! I silently cry out.
Something isn't adding up.
I glare at Sunheart. "And how exactly do you know this?" I say accusingly.
Sunheart seemed at a loss for words. "I-I, well, I-" he stopped, and taking a deep breath, said, "Because I've witnessed it myself."
Note: The way the cats can see each other in the dark is because they have a limited amount of night vision.
I don't believe him.
"You're lying!" I shriek, leaping on him. I bare my teeth. "You are the monster. You killed Plumshade!" I am about to claw him when I see Goldenpaw in the corner of my eye.
She's looking at us.
She's looking at me. Horrified.
Why can't things ever be easy?
I step off of Sunheart, sheathing my claws. He stands up, glaring at me.
"What I was trying to say," he continued. "Was that I've witnessed it myself, because I did the exact same thing. When Mintbreeze died, I was afraid that I might be targeted. So I stayed up, wanting to catch the monster before it did any more damage. It was the worst mistake of my life." He twisted his front leg so I could see; a long scar, infested with dark shadows. His eyes were full of pain as he said, "It has been slowly taking control of me, turning me into the same thing that monster is. I don't want to." he drew closer to me. "Kill me."
I look at him, shocked.
"Kill you?" I ask.
"Please!" he pleads. "I don't want to turn into one of the shadows. Please!"
The monster has done many horrible things.
But this is by far the worst.
I watch as Goldenpaw turns away. Good. I don't want her to witness this.
Shakily, I raise my paw up, unsheathed. Trying to inflict as little damage as possible, I bring it down onto his throat.
I fall, crying.
I can't take this anymore.
Beware the golden cat.
I remember what Plumshade told me. I look around. There are three golden cats; Hollowpaw, Goldenpaw, and Mousenose. Goldenpaw and Hollowpaw just became apprentices, so surely it couldn't be them!
So that only leaves....
Chapter 8 - The Monster's P.O.V
That brown cat.
He's onto me.
That way I can mess with him even further.
I sigh. This has been fun, but I'd better end it soon.
That means I'd better speed it up.
Soon, the clans will be nothing more than a memory.
This time, I have a different plan.
I've moved my nest to the front of the den. I'm gonna watch from there.
Maybe I'll succeed.
I'm in my nest, keeping one eye open.
Soon after, a golden-furred cat sneaks out of what used to be the apprentice's den.
I was right!
He's always been a quiet one.
I watch as he shakes his fur out. As he does, shadows seep out of his fur and surround him, covering his whole body. His warm amber eyes slowly morph into pure white, emotionless eyes. I shiver. This was not what I was expecting.
Mousen- The monster gazes around the clearing, then steps into the center. As it does, more shadows begin to surround him, turning into sharp points. He whispers something that I can't hear.
Then the shadows shoot into the dens. They then bring out three cats, so surrounded by darkness that I can't see them. The shadows then start tearing the cats limb from limb, the very flesh off their body. After a while of painful observing, the shadows stop.
They drop something.
Three piles of pure white bones.
Their shrieks still ring in my ears.
The monster watches, looking satisfied. It slinks back to the den, but stops.
It stares at me.
I stay as still as I can. I feel anxiety and fear worming in my belly.
After a while, it continues back to the den. I feel joy and pride bubbling up inside of me.
Now I know who to stop.
I immediately race out and leap on Mousenose, snarling. He looks up at me fearfully.
"What are you doing?" he asks, frightened. "What did I do?"
"I saw you last night," I hiss. "You walked out and turned into the shadows. Your eyes went completely white."
"What? No!" Mousenose tries to push me off, but I'm too strong. He looks at me and says, "I was in my nest the whole night. Maybe you're the monster!"
I stare at him, wanting to make an angry retort. Instead, I slash at his muzzle.
Then I heard a twig crack.
I look around. Bluestripe, Oakstalk, and Goldenpaw have come out of the dens. They were now watching us.
"What are you doing?" Bluestripe narrowed her eyes. Goldenpaw had her eyes widened at me. "What are you doing Pinemist?" She looks shocked.
"He is the monster!" I snarl angrily, all of my grief flooding my mind. "I saw him last night. He turned into the shadows, and then......" I trail off and look around again. Bluestripe. Goldenpaw. Oakstalk. No others.
"He killed Hollowpaw, Iceshadow and Smallflight." I finish, practically choking it out. They gasped. I could see Goldenpaw on the verge of tears. She was the foster sister of Hollowpaw and Skypaw, except Skypaw had died a moon ago.
Now is not the time to think about that. I need to destroy the shadows.
"Wait! I swear I'm not evil!" Mousenose pleads.
He sounds so genuine.
But I know it's a trick.
I rake my claws down his face and belly. He screeches in pain, his fur being stained red. I claw at his tail and his ears,
Then, I finally rip his throat out.
I look up, expectantly. Then I see it.
A small glimmer in the sky.
I race through the trees, leaving the others to stare at Mousenose's body. I finally did it!
I stop at the edge of our territory, staring at the Shadow Wall. I stop, feeling defeated for a second. Then I see a small opening. Through it, I see rolling hills, where rabbits are racing. Windclan territory. Or what used to be.
I step back, determined to get through. I ram into the Shadow Wall with all my might.
I am thrown backwards, crashing into a tree. I look, and swiftly the opening closes, leaving me in darkness again.
It was all a trick.
I killed an innocent cat.
I immediately race back, wanting to see if the others are okay. I run into the clearing, hoping to see them alright.
Oakstalk, Bluestripe, and Goldenpaw are being dangled in the air by some shadows, desperately trying to get away. I start to run over to help them but then I hear it. The voice that comes from nowhere, yet everywhere.
"Who will you save?"
I am confused.
Then I understand.
I choose one cat to save, and the shadows kill the others. It's horrible.
I will cause of the death of two of my clanmates.
But I have to choose.
I stand there, staring up at them as I think. The are looking at me desperately. They don't want to die.
I see Oakstalk, who has always hated me. I see Bluestripe, who has always been nice enough. And then I look at Goldenpaw, my apprentice. She's always been like a daughter to me. I couldn't bear to lose her.
"Goldenpaw!" I yowl. The shadows seem to nod, dropping Goldenpaw. Then two other shadows shoot through Bluestripe's and Oakstalk's hearts, and they fall to the ground.
I race over to Goldenpaw, who is lying down in pain.
"Are you okay?" I ask frantically. She turns her head to face me and smiles. I gasp.
"Wh-What? It's you?" I ask, leaping back. Goldenpaw. She's been the monster this whole time. I feel betrayed.
Goldenpaw, or the monster, stands up. Their fur is staying the same; Goldenpaw's long golden pelt. And yet the empty, cold white eyes are still there. They walk towards me, and the shadows pin me to the ground. I struggle.
"Honestly, I thought you would catch on a lot sooner." Their voice is cold and cruel. "I mean, did you ever think it was weird that an abandoned newborn kit was found just two days before Windclan started to fall? Weren't you ever suspicious that Skypaw had gone looking for me when I disappeared for a short amount of time, then later was found dead? She had seen me transform, so naturally I had to kill her."
"You are worse than a monster," I hiss at her. "How can you find pleasure in seeing other cats die?"
The shadow looks at me, then smirks. Shadows then begin to wrap around my throat. I can't talk. I can barely breathe.
"Because," It answers, and I see it shift around; the shadow looks like Bluestripe, then Mousenose, then me! I realize this was all a trick. I never saw Mousenose. It only shape-shifted so I would think I saw him.
Everything was a trick.
"I am pure darkness."
The shadows engulf me. Then all I can see is black.
Epilogue - The Monster's P.O.V
I smile as I make the shadows leave, seeing the brown cat's broken, mangled body.
My job is complete.
I walk around the clearing, my shadows swirling around in delight. I remember what I did to the clans;
For Shadowclan, I took away their night vision.
For Skyclan, I took away their trees.
For Riverclan, I took away their river.
For Windclan, I took away their moor.
And for Thunderclan....
I took away their hope.
I walk away, planning to turn into pure shadows, but then I stop.
I look at you.
You think this is all a fanfic, don't you? That this is all make-believe?
Well guess what. It's not.
It never was.
And it never will be.
I smirk as you shiver and say, "Your next."
Soon, you will be the one surrounded by shadows.