"Why are we here?" Darkstripe snarled as he faced three other cats. Mapleshade and Thistleclaw were beside him, standing their ground with harsh scowls on their faces.
"Because we're giving you a chance. A chance to redeam yourselves," Snowfur answered calmly but her eyes bore into Thistleclaw's. She still loved him with all her heart and it took a lot of strength to not run to him immediately; it was obvious that he felt the same.
"Why would we want to redeam ourselves?" Thistleclaw asked evenly. "We made the choices we did for a reason and what would make you think that we would want to take them back?
"Do you really want to spend the rest of your time in the Dark Forest?" Crookedstar retorted. Nobody spoke, not even Mapleshade who almost always had an opinion about something.
To be honest, they all knew that if they had a chance to join StarClan, they were going to take it. Just the thought of the Place of No Stars sent shivers down their spines.
"Fine. We'll do it," Thistleclaw answered the three StarClan warriors sitting ahead of them stood up. He glanced at Darkstripe and Mapleshade to confirm this was the right decision and they both gave brief nods.
The StarClan cats took a step forward and each touched the noses of the other three Dark Forest warriors.
Firestar to Darkstripe, because the kittypet leader was the one thing Darkstripe failed to overcome in his short life.
Snowfur to Thistleclaw, because the loss of his mate is what made him turn evil in the first place.
And Crookedstar to Mapleshade, because the two shared a bond Mapleshade had with no one else. A bittersweet bond that made them both feel hatred to the core but they still cared for the other.
It was a startling pain that rippled through the three dead cats bodies as they felt themsleves shrinking.
"What have you done?" Mapleshade snarled as she fell to the ground and tried to unsheath her claws. Firestar didn't answer but instead turned and walked away, Crookedstar did the same but Snowfur remained where she was.
"I love you. No matter what you did, I will always love you," the white StarClan member whispered to her mate, Thistleclaw, as he let out a shrill scream.
She flinched at the sheer agony in his voice but all she did was turn away like the other two cats.
Finally, Snowfur as well walked away from the three warriors as they endured the pain.
Everything seemed to go black but they could hear voices.
There was a young she-cats voice.
"What will you name them?" the she-cat asked. Even though it sounded distant, they could still sense the kindness that filled her voice.
Another she-cat answered but her voice was much deeper and more mature. "This one, the dark brown tabby is Darkkit."
Darkstripe felt someone nudge him lightly as a male started speaking. He mewled in protest but the second the sound left his mouth, he realized something was wrong.
"I think the she-cat should be Maplekit and the last one is Thistlekit," the tom said nudging Mapleshade and Thistleclaw.
Mapleshade let out an indignant meow, but it sounded young and kitlike. Just like Darkstripe, she tensed up when the truth started to sink in.
Suddenly, realization dawned on the three cats. They were kits!
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