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autumnbreeze*one

~two moons later~

things have now gone way too far

i don't know what to think anymore

for i took our promised oath

right down to the core

~

"Alright, Autumnbreeze, it's just me and you today." I look up from my meal to see Owlmoon sit down beside me, sighing unhappily. 

"What are we doing?" I ask curiously. She shoots me that look again. It's like that whenever I speak to her. She gives me a look that I can easily decipher: Why are you even saying that, no one even cares. That's how I end up not talking at all to my best friends - Skymist, Roseblossom, Swanheart, and especially Owlmoon.

Because what's the point of talking at all if you're not even acknowledged, and you're told to shut up with every sound you make? That's why I'm miserable all the time. That's why I don't really acknowledge myself. No one does. I'm a part of something, but I'm not very important or relevent to anything.

Owlmoon sighs. "We're on Repair Duty. Come on, Autumnbreeze. I want to finish this quick so I can go finish my game with Roseblossom and Skymist." I roll my eyes and follow her to the edge of the clearing where an unfinished den is being repaired by two other cats - Windrunner and Duskshimmer.

Windrunner waves his tail and nods a hello. I smile - the first real, genuine smile I've smiled in a long time. I've gotten to know him on the few hunting trips that we've done, thanks to the fact that we both like to work alone. It's funny how fast I can become friends with someone - after all, the only cats I've actually been friends with - Snake doesn't count, because he's my only surviving littermate - are Pipes, Swanheart, Roseblossom, Skymist, and ... Owlmoon. All my happiness drains at the thought of Owlmoon.

What happened? Why is she scting this way? What in the name of StarClan did I do? And are we even friends?

"Hey Autumnbreeze!" I'm brought back to reality when I hear Windrunner's voice. I look up and smile before I remember what I'm supposed to do. A pile of leaves sits near Duskshimmer and Owlmoon, while a pile of twigs sits by Windrunner and I.

"Can you replace the worn twigs with newer one? I can go get the leaves put them in in the gaps." Windrunner nods wordlessly, and I make my way torwards the pile of leaves, trying not to focus on the fact that Owlmoon is there.

I walk towards them, keeping my focus only on the pile. I try to pretend that Duskshimmer and Owlmoon aren't there. Taking a bunch of tangy leaves in my mouth, I smile inside, knwoing that I was successful. Until the tap on my shoulder.

I turn to see owlmoon. Her eyes look pleading. I look at her with confusion. She mouths the words Help me. I smile and shake my head, walking back to Windrunner.

I work in silence after that. Windrunner seems to sense my mood, and he doesn't pry anything out of me. What is Owlmoon really like? What has she become? What am I to her?

~

things have changed from before

i can tell that when i wake

but what in the world did i ever do

what was my big mistake?

~

When the four of us are done, the den is half-way done and seemingly brand new. The walls are sturdy, and every little crack is filled with pawfuls of oak leaves. Sighing, I make my way to the fresh-kill pile, too hungry and too tired to speak.

Rummaging through the heaping pile of prey, I finally settle on a water vole. I walk across the clearing where small groups of cats sit together and talk. Roseblossom, Swanheart, Owlmoon, and Skymist are sitting together, and I see that they left a spot open - for me. I feel happiness seep through me, and all my worries about Owlmoon just seem to wash away. I feel like I used to before.

Skymist hears me coming, and she breaks out into a smile. "Come on, Autumnbreeze! We saved you a spot." She moves over a bit, just to prove her point. I walk up to them, my eyes sweeping the clearing. I spot Windrunner sitting alone, and something in me tells me to go over to him. I shake my head and signal to Windrunner. Thank StarClan that Skymist seems to understand me. I run to Windrunner and set my vole in front of me.

"Hey Windrunner!" I say enthusiastically.

"Oh!" Windrunner looks at me, and his amber eyes seem to light up instantly. "Hi Autumnbreeze!"

"Do you mind if I sit here?" I ask, knowing the answer.

"Of course." he smiles at me, and I feel relaxed for some reason.

We eat in silence, each of us not knowing what to say. I want to ask him so many things, but nothing seems right. I don't want to break the link and lose one of the fastest friendships I've ever made.  But thankfully, he broke the silence, and everything automatically became a little less awkward.

"Remember the rabbit?" he asks, his eyes shining.

"What rabbit...? Ohhh, yeah! I remember!" I say, a smile taking over my face. We both start laughing at the same time, and I feel like a whole ton of worries just lifted of me. I feel free somehow... I can't even explain it.

The rabbit story: Windrunner and I were on one of our hunts, and I was chasing a rabbit. I eventually got it, and it was limp when I dragged it back. I forgot to actually kill it, and when I did, it smacked me in the face and ran away. It's a pretty sad story - and my face hurt then too, but just remembering something so stupid makes me feel really happy inside. 

"And I remember when you caught the next one? You nearly trampled it." I crack up again, for who-knows reason why, but it felt good. It felt good to be like the cat I was when I was with Snake, Owl, and Pipes. Not Owlmoon. Just Owl. Because Owl was nice, and funny, and sarcastic, and she didn't hate me for no apparent reason.

Those were the good times. The times when I was happy all the time.

Windrunner and I talk like old friends, and it feels like no time has passed when someone tapped my shoulder. Windrunner looks at her, confusion glinting in his eyes. "Owlmoon?"

I whip around to see her. She looked like she used to - without the hate. "Hey Owlmoon." I greet her casually. 

"Autumnbreeze, can you come with me for a second?" I glance at Windrunner who nods his reassuringly, as if to say It's alright, you can go.

"Sure." I walk with her to the edge of camp.

"Autumn." she says, taking a deep breath. "I just wanted to say ... that, I, uh... really appreciate yo-" 

"Autumnbreeze! Owlmoon! You guys coming for a walk?" Skymist runs up to us, flanked by Roseblossom and Swanheart.

"Sure!" Owlmoon automatically goes, muttering a "Tell you later" when she realizes I'm there.

"Autumnbreeze?" Skymist looks at me, and it's as if she sends a silent plead to me. I shake my head sadly. I want to figure out what's happening to Owlmoon.

"Not today, Skymist. Sorry." I say, flattening my ears and looking away.

"You sure, Autumnbreeze?" Skymist asks.

"Yes, Skymist. I'm sure." I say warily.

"Oh, Alright. But come and join us if you change your mind, Autumnbreeze!" she waves her tail, and the four of them walk out of camp together.

I find myself walking back towards Windrunner.

"Why didn't you go?" he asks softly, confusion flickering in his eyes.

I shrug. "I don't feel like it. Sometimes we need a break, you get what I mean?" Windrunner smiles and nods his head.

"So... you want to come hunting?" He asks nervously.

"Sure!" I say, a smile breaking out on my face.

We walk out of camp together, and into the forest. The trees filter the light that comes through, and the light dances across the million falling leaves that will soon be crunch under our paws. "Where do you want to go?" I ask him.

"Can we go to the river?"

"Sure!" I say, a smiling mischeviously. "Then I'll be able to push ou into the river!"

"Who says I won't push you in first?"

"Race you!" I start running, giving myself a headstart. I know that Windrunner will pass me sooner or later - hence his name. But I manage to beat him to the river, and I laugh as he comes up right behind me, surprised to see me beat him.

"Ha. I beat you." I say, waving my tail.

"But you got a headstart! That's not fair!"

"But you have longer legs!" I say, mimicking him. "That's not fair!"

And then we both start laughing. I look into the river to see so many types of fish.

"Contest, or nah?" I ask him.

He raises his eyesbrows. Swiping his paw into the river, he gives the tiny silver minnow the killing bite.

"One - nil." he says, sticking his tongue out.

"Oh, it's on." I say laughing.

He has the lead, so I start swiping with both paws instead of only one. Soon there's a pile of fish sitting behind us.

"I won!" Windrunner proclaims.

"What?" I say, perplexed. "Of course not! I was catching two fish at once!"

"Then where's our seperate piles?"

I hang my head, feeling like an idiot "We both put it in the same pile."

"Whoops." Windrunner mutters, smiling.

We pick up our fish and head back to camp. We walk silently, our mouths filled with the tangy taste of fish. Walking through the thorn barrier, I end up crashing into a cat, spewing fish all over. Sighing unhappily, I brought all the fish into a file and tried to carry it in my mouth again.

"Autumnbreeze." I tunr around to see her, and I nearly drop my prey again. Her eyes look like they're on fire, and I'm about to get blasted into ashes. 

"H-Hi, Owlmoon." I stutter nervously. And then the fire dies away, and her eyes are just their regular, beautiful hazel color again.

"Let's go for a walk." she beckons me with her tail. I look around and realize that Windrunner has already gone, and I nod my head. Dropping off my prey in the pile, I run back over to Owlmoon, who waits patiently.

"Come," she beckons, and I follow her nervously.

"So... why are we doing this?"

"Because I want to talk to you."

"Okay..." I mutter.

She finally stops abruptly. Turning to me, she searches my eyes, confusion glinting in her expression.

"Autumnbreeze, is something wrong? You've been acting so weird lately."

Well of course nothing's right. You're staring at me like you're some psycho firecat who wants to burn me. So no, I'm not okay. I want to say it so badly, but I force myself to keep my mouth shut. Who knows what Owlmoon would take from that? Instead, I try to make myself seem calm.

"Yeah... I'm alright..."

"Then why are you acting so weird."

That's all it took. I felt the tears threatening to spill over, andI take a step away. "It's none of your business." I whisper. And with that, I run deeper into the forest, not looking back.

"Autumnbreeze!" Owlmoon calls, seeming desperate. I don't respond.

When I'm far away, I let the tears spill over. It's all over. No cat will see me. I'll just stay hidden, again...

... and nobody will ever care.

That's when I realize I'm not alone.

"Autumnbreeze?"

I whirl around, panic filling me. It's Duskshimmer.

~

you think that everything's my fault

you stand around and mope

that's why i've become what i am

i've lost all my hope

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