Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copy left
You can read our best books
the wolf would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Rising Tides

By the wolf

Mystery / Action

First Excerpt


Cats milled about a stony hollow, shades of white and grey and black, chatting idly over choice prey. Suddenly the thorn barrier shook violently, sending a flock of dark birds skyward. Agitated whispers and shuffled fur made the gathering crowd buzz.

Opposite the disturbance, two toms emerged from a recess of cliff and looked over the scene, one pale silver, the other black-and-white. Terse silence reigned until a haggard form burst from the tunnel.

The monotone crowd rippled backward. A wide circle opened round a small she-cat, eyes wide and breaths labored. Her fur was rich brown, zigzagged with stripes, and seemed to hang from her frame. Three vibrant ginger bundles swung from her flat muzzle.

With utmost care, she deposited her luggage at her paws. She swept her gaze over her spectators, then focused on the dark toms still on the ledge. "I beg you," she called hoarsely. "I beg you, help my kits. They die if not healed!" At that moment, her three kittens began to wail, and she ceased her begging to cover them in gentle licks. As their cries subsided, a path opened through the middle of the crowd.

Two she-cats padded elegantly through the bunched cats, all eyes fixed on the haggard mother and her litter. The brown stranger watched the duo closely, eyes flicking back and forth, and curled closer around her fiery bundles. "Who be you?" she croaked finally, stopping them at the inner edge of the crowd.

The older of the two, grey fur shadowed with tabby stripes, blinked, caught off guard by the peculiar vernacular. "My name is Leaf," she offered. "I am FireClan's senior healer. And this is Maple, my apprentice," she added, sweeping her tail over said she-cat's spotted muzzle.

"My kits will be of FireClan, then," the brown tabby mumbled to herself, then looked at Leaf. "They are afflicted each by what you call greencough. They be those with no call, and they are of three moon cycles. I beg you, let them heal and rear with your group."

She looked contemplative for a moment, then added, "Let them know not who their mother be. I be she who carries much shame." With that, she nosed her kits toward Leaf. Slowly the healer pulled them close, keeping her eye on their brown mother.

"They will be cared for," Leaf said, "but I would like to know your name." She watched as the ragged tabby flicked her tail against the ground in thought.

"I be she who is called Runa," the stranger admitted after a moment. Leaf nodded, committing the odd name to memory. Runa smiled faintly. Her striped head dropped to her paws and her eyelids collided, tense muscles relaxing. A brief phrase fell from her mouth, too breathy and faint to be heard, and then she fell silent.

In one movement, Leaf and Maple scooped up the ginger kits and rushed them to their den. The silver and black-and-white toms leaped down from their ledge and padded forward slowly. "Return to your dens," one ordered hoarsely. Within a few heartbeats, the clearing was deserted, the toms staring all the while at Runa's lifeless form.

"So her name is - was - Runa," the silver tabby said. His voice sounded distant, rumbling like oncoming thunder, and his eyes were glazed. "What a peculiar name."

"Peculiar indeed," his compatriot replied, equally detached.

For a beat, they were silent. "Brightstar, do you think..." the tabby began, his stormy eyes fixating on her slack face.

"Yes I do, Moonstar," Brightstar answered. "A grim prospect."

"Indeed."

After another beat of stiff silence, Moonstar straightened imperceptibly, saying, "Well Runa, you seem to have brought great misfortune upon our Clan. Just as I would expect from a Shadowlander. In any case, I hope that you can forgive us for how we treat your sons."

The Clan leaders exchanged a dark, knowing look. Brightstar swallowed, then hunched forward to pay final respects. He touched his nose to the lifeless tabby's forehead, only to freeze when he heard an odd crack.

He watched with Moonstar, stunned, as she crumbled to ash before their eyes. Another glance passed between them. The tabby leader cleared his throat. "I think that's quite enough excitement for today," he said quickly, words falling over one another.

Brightstar nodded. The dual leaders started toward their den, then reconsidered. They changed course, heading instead for the healers' den, and conversed rapidly under their breath. Snow shivered as they passed into the shady enclosure.

Stillness settled over the clearing. Snow fell in errant swirls as a biting wind picked up, pushing the naked tree branches together in an eerie melody. The shadows lurking at the fringes of the hollow swelled as clouds choked away the sunlight. Distantly, a lone crow called to the wintry air.


Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

mrh: This interesting take on the Harry Potter series fascinated me from line one on. I am in love with this tale and its characters and cannot wait to read the next chapter. I look forward to more soon.When can I expect the next chapter? I am so excited to read it!

Jordan Young: *ALERT FOR POSSIBLE SPOILERS* Where to start? I don't know how to sum up this review, this story was absolutely sensational. Brilliant. Flawless. I loved every single bit of this story, it is truly amazing. I read this story in fifteen hours, it is magnificent. I loved everything about it, the p...

Felisa Yoder Osburn: I really enjoyed the story. Civil War stories are some of my favorites and the intertwining of the past with current times was wonderful. I look forward to reading the next stories.

263Adder: Okay so I adore this story. I only knocked one star off plot for historical inaccuracies because I'm a bit of a stickler for that. The ending broke my heart though, considering you already changed history couldn't you (SPOILER) change it a bit more and have them together!!!! I want an alternative...

Darren Powell: Very nice read. Lots of surprising treats from: Schrodinger’s cat and dervish dance forms; to sensei masters and brownian motion. I wasn't expecting this, so it was a pleasant discovery.Also liked the 'cross-over' events connecting one character's/or group's journey to another. I like how that wa...

Atractivo Sumit: The story is an amazing blend of what we call natural, plain romance along with subtle emotions and interesting twists. The plot is so beautifully interwoven.

Someone: This was a fun, entertaining read. Although the novel wasn’t stylistically polished, and although the first couple of chapters struggled to hold my attention, the rest of the novel was engaging and beautifully done. You had me fooled until the end. The rest of this review will contain spoilers fo...

Warchief: The biggest problem with the Harry Potter series is that it's all from his point of view. So we never really get to see or understand events from other peoples perspective. I think that they would be more than a few people that want to know what happened at Hogwarts during that last year.As far a...

M.L. Bull: Hello, Aalia!Your story compelled the emotional pain and struggle of a teenage girl very well.. The imagery was also convincing and well-written, showing the different personalities of your characters and their actions. However, I do think that many of your sentences are too lengthy and could use...

More Recommendations

JanThompson: This book gives a beautiful description of a country which one rarely gets to see. The contrast between rich and poor is very evident too.The storyline actually sheds a compelling light on why women in certain countries sell themselves just to help their families or even to survive themselves. I ...

thePeeJ: aced it boiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii...

Leah Brown: This was an amazing read! I was hooked from the very first chapter, holding my breadth to see what would happen next. The characters are rich and vibrant, and the world Danielle has created is fascinating. If you love YA, you MUST read this book. Such a smart, brilliant debut novel. I loved it!

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral stories!
King's Lament

FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"

The Cyneweard

Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral story!
Spectra

Ro-Ange Olson: "Loved it and couldn't put it down. I really hope there is a sequel. Well written and the plot really moves forward."