The sun is setting, the sky is darkening. The forest is eerily silent; each crackle of the leaves under your paws rebounds through the trees. Your breath clouds in the air. Leaf-bare is coming. You can feel it. Inclining your head, you are startled to see that it is dusk already. Weariness gnaws at your core -all you want to do is sleep.
Just as you are settling down in a patch of leaf-mould in the alcove between the gnarled roots of a giant tree, you hear a noise. A snapping. Your eyes, which had been drooping shut, fly open.
What was that?
Your gaze darts through the trees, muscles tensing. Your breathing quickens; ready for a fight. Something is watching you. Ears flat against your head, teeth bared, you hiss, "Who's there? Show yourself!"
Your wish is granted. The bushes rustle and part, revealing a cat like yourself -and completely different. His body is muscular, tense, and criss-crossed with scars. Lines of pink, marring the bright orange of his pelt. It sends a shiver up your spine. His regal green gaze locks with your own, and the cat meows, "I am Hollowstar, leader of DuskClan. Who are you, and what brings you onto our territory?" He bears himself proudly, confident of his strength. Part of you envies the orange tom.
You recount your tale, and the orange tom -Hollowstar- nods. "You have come a long way," he notes, "What is it you are searching for?"
This question takes you by surprise. This cat was perspicacious. Not once, in your entire tale, had you spoken of looking for something. Now that you think of it... you hadn't known it yourself. Yet, as soon as the query had passed his lips, an answer sprung to the forefront of your mind.
"A home," you answer, holding his gaze.
Hollowstar's face splits into a smile. "Welcome to DuskClan."