Prophecies and Loss
Warriors doesn't belong to me.
With narrowed eyes Firepaw scanned the fields in front of them. It was almost moon high and they wouldn't need long anymore to reach Dawn. But he was worried. During their little quest, they'd gotten attacked by three dogs. They'd managed to fight them off, but Ravenpaw had an injured paw and Dustpaw had scratched all over his body.
"Firepaw, are you coming?" He looked up and locked eyes with Greypaw. He nodded and together the two brothers made their way to the other ten, who were a bit ahead already. "What's troubling you?", asked Greypaw suddenly. Firepaw sighed. His former deputy could read him far too easy.
"It's just…I'm truly afraid of what Dawn could tell us", explained the former leader finally.
Greypaw nodded and answered: "Yeah, same here, but hey, stay strong, you can do that. After all, you managed it in your last life…lives…" Both toms chuckled amused. "There you managed it too."
"I guess you're right. Thanks Greypaw."
They silently continued their way, taking switches with the cats that helped Ravenpaw and Dustpaw walk and the carried the herbs. Around moon-high, they started to hear how water slashed against rocks and Silverpaw called: "We're closing. Watch out, you don't want to fall from those cliffs."
Firepaw stared straight ahead. In the distance he could see stars reflecting on water. He felt better immediately. StarClan was with them, there was no reason for him to be scared.
When they reached the cliffs, everyone was silent for a while and watched, allowing the spume to hit their bodies. The cool water relaxed their, from their travel, burning muscles and Firepaw heard a few purrs. Then he suddenly heard breathing and looked around.
Behind a few rocks he spotted something black and white.
"Dawn?", asked the ginger tom. At this the thing moved towards them to reveal a badger with warm eyes.
"Waited for you", stated Dawn. "Come, come…"
She walked off and Firepaw followed her immediately.
"Firepaw?" He turned to see Whitepaw. "Are you sure?"
Firepaw nodded and continued his way. He heard how the others started to move too and they slowly followed Dawn. The badger led them into a cave and said: "Sit, I have much to tell, but you have too." Firepaw sat down, the others followed his example and Dawn nodded to him that he should begin.
And for the next while Firepaw told Dawn everything about the ten of them, with occasional comments from Bluepaw and Spottedpaw. Whitepaw and Greypaw had led Silverpaw, Hollypaw and Sandpaw out to hunt while Ravenpaw and Dustpaw rested.
"…that's it", ended Firepaw.
Dawn nodded slowly, then said: "Always knew you were special, but not that special. Now I know why you thought I'm great-great-great grandmother Midnight."
Firepaw nodded in agreement, then asked: "So, why should we come?"
"I have good and bad word from StarClan", began Dawn slowly. "Good word; In deepest grief and danger, strong Oak will help you stand and provide cover for the visiting Jay."
Firepaw's head fell to the side in confusion, then Bluepaw asked: "And the bad Prophecy?"
At this Dawn hesitated, then softly said: "Tiger leads Shadow to Thunder and only sacrifice of blue stone can help."
Firepaw narrowed his eyes and Whitepaw hissed: "We need to return as fast as possible. It could mean Tigerstar is getting ShadowClan to attack ThunderClan."
Firepaw nodded, then dipped his head to Dawn and said: "Thank you Dawn, thank you very much."
"Welcome young fighters. StarClan light you path."
"And yours", called Bluepaw back, then the ten cats dashed out of the badgers home and ran back home.
They took no break. Though they knew they would be utterly exhausted when they came back, they wanted to return as fast as possible. They crossed the Thunderpath all at once while the sun started to rise before them. Soon they'd passed the horse place and dashed along the WindClan border.
"We can't cross WindClan territory around this time of the day", gasped Firepaw. It was almost Sun High.
Bluepaw nodded, then Spottedpaw perked up: "Then let's go over the Moonpool. Maybe our ancestors can give us strength when we drink from the water."
No one argued, so Firepaw took it as silent agreement and led the ten of them towards Moonpool. They slid down to the pool and padded up to it. Firepaw shook his head and dug his claws into the ground to not collapse right there. In his head everything spun around and his paws burned like hell. It remembered him of the time when he'd gotten Bramblestar out of the fire while the tabby had just been a little kit. Spottedpaw padded up to the pool and licked up a bit water.
Then her head shot up and she called: "Everyone come quick. I was right."
Tiredly Firepaw padded up to her and bent down to drink a bit from the water. He shivered when his tongue came in contact with the cold water, but soon he felt his strength returning. His head cleared a bit and the burning in his paws went down to a dull pain he could easily ignore.
Looking around he found everyone with renewed strength and looked at Bluepaw. She nodded and in unison the two leaped forward, followed by everyone else. They raced directly at ThunderClan camp, when Firepaw crashed into someone.
"You're back", exclaimed the one and Firepaw recognized Reedheart. But he was shocked when he saw bleeding wounds and missing patches of for on the warrior.
"What's happening?", gasped Sandpaw.
"ShadowClan…is attacking", panted the warrior. "I…was sent to get you and then WindClan."
"Us?", asked Dustpaw confused.
"We, Splashwhisker, Sapphirefur and I told Nightstar we ordered you all to spend a few days out of the territory. It would be safe since you all were very good fighters, Spottedpaw a very good medicine cat and you would easily outnumber most rouges…Run to camp…they need help…"
Firepaw nodded and once again they raced on.
"So one part of Dawn's prophecy came true already", growled Hollypaw. "Tigerstar got ShadowClan to attack us."
"But what does the blue stone mean?", asked Silverpaw.
Firepaw gazed left and saw how the fur on Bluepaw's stood straight. "I don't think it means you", soothed the ginger tom. "Also, what do you have to do with a stone?"
Bluepaw smiled at him and answered: "I guess you're right, but I'll still be careful."
"I hope everyone is", argued Firepaw back. They raced on in silence, then already heard the screeching of fighting cats.
"Let's do this", yowled Greypaw and everyone burst into camp.
Firepaw raced forward immediately when he saw a familiar tabby pelt. It wasn't Tigerstar, but he recognized Hawkfrost just as fast. The tabby apprentice pinned Lionclaw down. Especially not her, growled Firepaw mentally and leaped at Hawkpaw. The tabby got pushed away and Lionclaw exclaimed: "Firepaw."
Her son got no chance to answer, since Hawkpaw attacked him.
"Prepare to die kittypet", hissed the tabby.
"Not this time", hissed Firepaw back and scratched over Hawkpaw's stomach while he bit the others shoulder. He felt the tabby's claws on his shoulders and forehead, however didn't let go and after a while Hawkpaw jerked away from him and fled. Firepaw pushed himself up and looked around.
Bluepaw pinned Thistlepaw down, Greypaw was in a fight with Darkpaw, Dustpaw and Ravenpaw battled a tom that reminded him of Brokenstar, he guessed it was him, and he even found Tigerpaw. The tabby was in a battle with Rivertail, together with his mentor and Firepaw was about to jump and help the deputy, when a scream of fear reached his ears.
He spun around and gasped.
A brown tom with many scars pinned Spottedpaw down. Clawface, yowled Firepaw mentally and dashed forward. The brown apprentice raced his claws to kill the medicine cat.
"Not this time", hissed Firepaw once more and pushed Clawpaw away from Spottedpaw. "Run", hissed the ginger tom to the she-cat.
Spottedpaw struggled onto her legs and fled to Splashwhisker, who ushered her into the elders den, not that anyone besides Whisperear and Greeneye were in it. Those two truly were too old to fight, but Scarpath, Kestrelstrike and Stormwing battled with a few warriors nearby.
Firepaw ducked down when Clawpaw tried to swipe his ears off, then got behind the brown tom and dug his fangs into his tail. The other cried out and spun around with such force, that Firepaw got flunk against the nursery. He heard the kits inside screech in fear and surprise and quickly got out of the brambles. Not one second too soon. Clawpaw leaped at him and Firepaw swiftly got away. The brown apprentice landed face-first in the brambles and yowled in pain. He struggled out of the bushes and right into Firepaw's claws. The ginger tom scratched and bit as hard as he could. He wouldn't kill Clawpaw, but that was his revenge for killing Spottedleaf once and for now trying it again. Finally Clawpaw got free and raced off.
Firepaw gasped hard, then scanned the camp for Tigerpaw. He wasn't with Speltleaf, who just fled from Rivertail's claws to leap at Bonetail. The grey she-cat had recovered from her injuries and furiously attack the ShadowClan she-cat.
Where is he?, thought Firepaw in panic. Where?
He scanned the whole camp, then saw it. And what he saw, scared the living daylights out of him. Tigerpaw stood atop the cliff and just one warrior had realised it.
"Sapphirefur", whispered Firepaw when he realised it was his mentor.
He bounded forward and up the path to the cliff. Sapphirefur knew this was Tigerstar and Firepaw knew she wouldn't be able to fight him and come out alive. When he reached the top of the cliff. Tigerpaw dodged and attack of Sapphirefur, getting the she-cat dangerously close to the cliff. He crashed against her and with a yowl Sapphirefur dug her claws into the ground when her back-paws lost ground.
Firepaw raced forward when Tigerpaw made a move to take away Sapphirefur's last hold and pushed the tabby away with all his might.
Ignoring his life-long enemy, he raced to Sapphirefur and dug his fangs into her scruff, trying to pull her up again. Sapphirefur tried to help him and they almost managed to get her back up, when Tigerpaw ran his claws down Firepaw's side. He screamed in pain and had to let go of his mentor. Sapphirefur slid down again and Firepaw dug his fore-claws into her paws and his back-claws into the ground to hold her where she was. She hung too far down to reach her scruff now.
He crouched down as low as possible to not give Tigerpaw any chance to get to his throat while he held onto his mentor. Tigerpaw still attacked his side and he knew he would most likely look like Kestrelstrike after this, but he didn't care. He couldn't let Sapphirefur die.
His eyes snapped open and he stared down at him mentor, who smiled up at him.
"Let go and fight."
"NO!", shouted the ginger tom in panic and he saw that finally some cats realised that he was desperately trying to save his mentor while a ShadowClan apprentice slashed his flank again and again. Nightstar, Hawkpath and Eagleflight tried to get on top of the cliff to help him, when it happened.
Sapphirefur used her back-legs to get a, more-the-less, stand on the cliff and smiled softly at him.
"No", whispered Firepaw.
She continued to smile and whispered: "Never give up Firepaw…no warrior…could've wished for a better apprentice then you."
With that she pushed herself away from the cliff. Firepaw yowled in pain while he stared after her. With a heavy thud and crack the she-cat's body hit the ground and now rage rushed through the ginger tom. He shoved Tigerpaw away and leaped at him. The tabby would pay for what he got Sapphirefur to do. Dawn's voice echoed in his ears while he dug his fangs into Tigerpaw's tail.
Tiger leads Shadow to Thunder and only sacrifice of blue stone can help. Blue stone. Sapphires. Sapphirefur, of course. How could I've been so stupid?
Suddenly Tigerpaw threw him off and pinned him down. Firepaw struggled under his enemy, but it had no avail. Tigerpaw went to sink his fangs into the ginger tom's throat, when he was pushed away and pinned down by Nightstar.
Suddenly they all hard a female voice call: "Retreat ShadowClan! Retreat!"
The ShadowClan cats backed off, then ran off. Nightstar let go of Tigerpaw and the tabby ran off. "That's only the beginning kittypet!", hissed he to Firepaw, who struggled to get up. He'd lost much blood through the wounds on his flank. Nightstar was next to him and helped to walk down into the hollow.
The moment they reached flat ground, he broke away from his father and ran up to Sapphirefur's body. Tears streamed down his face already when he reached her and he pushed his nose into her fur. No cat stopped him, not even Splashwhisker bothered him with having to take care of his flank. They all knew that he needed time, since they'd all seen how he'd struggled to keep her on the cliff.
Suddenly he scented Sandpaw next to him and out of instinct pressed himself against her. She licked the wounds on his forehead gently and he muttered: "Dawn's prophecy came true."
"I know", whispered Sandpaw back. "The blue stone she talked about was a sapphire, so Sapphirefur. You did your best. It was her decision."
"I know", repeated Firepaw her words. "But still…I feel guilty. I know it was her decision and I know StarClan felt it was her time to die, but it's still not fair."
"Haven't you once said: When is life fair?"
He smiled against his tears and whispered: "I guess you're right."
Suddenly something touched his injured flank and Splashwhisker meowed: "I gave you time with her, but that needs to be taken care off. When I'm done you can come back."
Firepaw nodded and got, although shakily, onto his paws. He glanced around and his heart was clenched with fear. Greypaw lay almost move less next to Lionclaw. His flanks rose and sunk fast and blood drenched the cobwebs on his shoulder and forehead. At the entrance of the medicine cats den, he saw Whitepaw and Hollypaw, The white tom had cobwebs around his head to cover also his ears and Hollypaw seemed almost like a white cat. T
his was a useless attack, realised Firepaw while he settled down in Splashwhisker's den. It was just to weaken us. Physically and Mentally.
He spaced out when Splashwhisker started to patch him up. He wondered if Dustpaw and Greypaw had felt like this when Redtail and Lionheart had died. He was pretty sure of it. After a while Splashwhisker gently meowed that he was done and Firepaw stood up.
He padded out to the centre of the camp again and straight to Sapphirefur. The next morning he would most likely get a new mentor and he promised to himself that he would stay the whole night with the grey she-cat. Settling down next to Rockheart, he glanced at Bluepaw, Spottedpaw and Silverpaw shortly, before he pushed his nose into the cold fur of his mentor.
He scented Bluepaw before she was next to him and then the she-cat whispered: "We've all been apprentices once already and lost our mentors, but it always hurts none-the-less."
Firepaw nodded numbly and whispered: "I know I felt similar when you died." A half-hearted laugh came from him. "Though I was your deputy when it happened."
Bluepaw nodded and whispered back: "I never wanted to pain you so much but…"
"No one ever wants this", argued Firepaw and gazed to the Silverpelt. "But when the time comes, it happens."
Bluepaw meowed in agreement, then both fell silent. During the night many cats retreated into their nests. A few stayed out on the clearing, but the only ones who stayed directly next to Sapphirefur the whole night were Firepaw, Bluepaw, Silverpaw, Spottedpaw, Rockheart and, to Firepaw's surprise, Hawkpath. The white and silver tom was crying for a while as well and Firepaw thought; It seems he also has feelings for you.
He knew Sapphirefur had heard him. Somewhere in camp was her Spirit. She watched them this night before she would join StarClan.
When the sun started to rise, Nightstar, who hadn't stayed next to Sapphirefur all the time, but awake the whole night as well, leaped onto the Highledge and called for a clan-meeting. Everywhere cats appeared out of their dens to listen what the leader had to say.
"Cats of ThunderClan. I know Sapphirefur did the right thing, since she saved Firepaw's life with her doings. If she hadn't both would've most likely died. Still is it always hard to lose a clan-mate. But, Sapphirefur wasn't just a warrior, but a mentor. That's why I need to give Firepaw a new mentor. Rockheart…"
Sapphirefur's sister looked up.
"You are a loyal warrior and clever fighter. I trust that you finish Firepaw's apprenticeship for you sister."
Rockheart padded up to Firepaw and the two touched noses, then Nightstar continued: "Farther…I want to welcome a new warrior. Songpaw should've been made warrior together with, Fangtail and Applepelt, however a fall from a tree kept her from it. But now it's finally time."
Firepaw looked at Songpaw and smiled. The ginger furred, blue eyed she-cat limped up to the Nightstar next to her mentor Dawnfire, Splashwhisker's brother.
"I, Nightstar, leader of ThunderClan, call upon my warrior ancestors to look down on this apprentice. She has trained hard to understand the ways of your noble code, and I commend her to you as a warrior. Songpaw, do you promise to uphold the warrior code and to protect and defend your Clan, even at the cost of your life?"
Firepaw saw how Songpaw's eyes sparkled when she answered: "I do."
Nightstar nodded and continued: "Then by the powers of StarClan, I give you your warrior name. Songpaw, from this moment you will be known as Songheart. StarClan honours your patience and courage, and we welcome you as a full warrior of ThunderClan."
Nightstar touched his nose to Songheart's forehead and she licked his shoulder. Then both stepped back.
"Songheart! Songheart! Songheart!", cheered the clan for the she-cat, who seemed to glow with pride.
Nightstar called the meeting to an end and the clan moved to stand in two rows in front of the Thorn tunnel. Kestrelstrike and Stormwing picked Sapphirefur up and carried, followed by the other three elders, the she-cat out of camp. Firepaw sighed deeply and then Rockheart said: "Rest for today Firepaw. You stayed awake the whole night and fought much yesterday."
She licked his forehead, then made her way to the warrior den. Firepaw went to the apprentice den. There he met Sandpaw, who just got ready for hunting practice.
"Hey", whispered the pale ginger she-cat.
"Hey", meowed Firepaw back.
"How are you?"
He looked at her and answered: "Could be better."
The two nuzzled each other, then she said: "Relax for today. I'm going to catch the juiciest prey in our territory for us, okay?"
Firepaw nodded with a smile and watched how Sandpaw bounded up to Reedheart. The two left and the ginger tom slid into the apprentice den. Silverpaw slept already and Bluepaw tiredly gazed up at him. She smirked and teasingly meowed: "Don't make losing mentors to your hobby. That's my mother you're with now."
He purred amused, then curled up in his nest and soon fell asleep.
Nightstar – small black tom with green eyes and a torn ear
Rivertail – slender light-grey tom with dark grey paws and blue eyes – Mentor of Nettlepaw
Splashwhisker – thick-furred, dark grey tom with orange eyes – Mentor of Spottedpaw
Reedheart – red-black spotted tom with green eyes – Mentor of Sandpaw
Bonetail – dark-grey she-cat with blue eyes and white tail
Boulderpelt – light-grey she-cat
Brighteye – white she-cat with light-yellow eyes
Leopardclaw – dark and light-brown spotted she-cat with yellow eyes – Mentor of Greypaw
Spiritheart – black tom with one white spot on the shoulder – Mentor of Hollypaw
Iceclaw – small black tom with ice-blue eyes and one white paw
Mountainfang – long furred spotted tom with dark-green eyes and huge fangs – Mentor of Hailpaw
Lynxfur – dark-yellow and brown spotted she-cat with only half of her tail – Mentor of Whitepaw
Tearfur – washy light-grey she-cat with dark-blue eyes
Eagleflight – brown tabby tom with white ears and fur around the nose – Mentor of Ravenpaw
Snowfall – white tom with dark blue, almost black eyes
Dawnfire – dark-grey tom with orange eyes – Mentor of Songpaw
Weaselflight – white tom with brown stripes – Mentor of Dustpaw
Hawkpath – white tom with greyish-silver stripes and blue eyes – Mentor of Frostpaw
Hopewing – golden she-cat with icy-blue eyes – Mentor of Silverpaw
Wolfheart – light grey she-cat with white, belly, throat and leg – Mentor of Bluepaw
Fangtail – brown tom with long fangs, scarred tail and green eyes
Applepelt – reddish-brown tom with green eyes
Lionclaw – golden she-cat with yellow eyes
Rockheart – dark grey she-cat with dark-blue eyes– Mentor of Firepaw
Raincloud – white she-cat with grey spots
Darkpetal – black she-cat with yellowish-green eyes
Songheart – ginger she-cat with blue eyes and an injured paw
Spottedpaw – tortoiseshell and white she-cat with a dappled coat, small white paws, chest and muzzle
Nettlepaw – silver-white tabby tom with blue eyes
Frostpaw – white she-cat with blue eyes
Hailpaw – grey tabby tom with white fur around his muzzle
Firepaw – scarred ginger tom with green eyes
Greypaw – long furred grey tom wit darker stripe over his back and yellow eyes, long scar on his shoulder and forhead
Ravenpaw – black tom with white spot on his chest and tail, amber eyes
Sandpaw – small pale ginger she-cat with green eyes
Dustpaw – dark-brown tabby-tom with amber eyes
Bluepaw – blue-grey she cat with silver fur around her nose and icy-blue eyes
Silverpaw - pale silver-grey tabby she-cat with a finely shaped head and bright blue eyes
Whitepaw - thick-furred, broad-shouldered, long-bodied, white tom with yellow eyes with torn ears and a scar from his forehead behind his ear till his shoulder
Hollypaw – black she-cat with green eyes with scars all over her body
Mudheart – dark-brown she-cat with light-brown ears (no kits)
Fierceclaw – tortoiseshell spotted she-cat (mother of Leafkit, Stripekit and Cloudkit, mate of Dawnfire)
Morningcloud – golden she-cat with pale-blue eyes (mother of Petalkit, Rosekit and Lilykit, mate of Reedheart)
Leafkit – tortoiseshell she-cat
Stripekit – grey and tortoiseshell tabby tom
Cloudkit – grey spotted tom with orange eyes
Petalkit – golden she-cat with pale-blue eyes
Rosekit – black, red and golden spotted she-cat
Lilykit – red-golden tabby she-cat
Whisperear – oldest she-cat in ThunderClan, white fur with grey ears
Greeneye – oldest tom in ThunderClan, light-brown tabby-tom with green eyes
Stormwing – dark-brown tabby-tom
Kestrelstrike – dark-golden she-cat with scars over her flank
Scarpath – dark-grey tom with white stripe over his shoulder