Chapter 3

When the sun started to rise, the cats looked at Claw expectantly.

“Stone, Storm, and Ash, go straight to Bonetree and see if any made it,” Claw ordered. “Nettle, Strike, Blaze, and Adder, go indirectly to Bonetree near the CloudClan border.”

Claw kept giving orders, but Blaze didn’t hear them because he was running into the woods with his best friend and the other two cats. Nettle was a formidable she-cat, and Strike was one of the most dangerous toms in the Clan.

They ran through the forest, stopping every now and then to scent the air. As they neared the CloudClan border, Strike hissed and stopped. Blaze scented the air. He smelled LeafClan! And it wasn’t very stale.

Blaze silently padded after Nettle and Strike. Then, Blaze heard the crunch of paws on leaves and the patrol raced toward it. He could smell the fear-scent of the tom as it ran for its life. Blaze saw the tom, and hissed with delight as the distance between him and the BloodClan cats shortened.

Nettle clawed at the tom’s tail, but missed. Strike signaled with his tail, and the BloodClan cats spread out around the tom. He yowled in fear. Strike leaped at the tom and succeeded in tripping him. Both the toms rolled over. Blaze leaped at the tom and raked his claws down his back. The tom yowled, and brought his paw back, but Adder bit his tail. Nettle and Strike joined the fight, and it was not long before the tom gave a hiss of defeat and fell to the ground. Strike bit his throat.

The BloodClan cats silently panted for a few moments, enjoying the smell of blood and the feel of victory.

“You fought well, Blaze and Adder,” Strike meowed.

Blaze dipped his head to the senior warrior. It was an honor to be complimented by Strike. He was a legend among BloodClan cats.

Blaze and Adder exchanged a triumphant look. They had done it!

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