DAWNCLAN [🌅] & CLOUDCLAN [☁️]

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one-shot #1 | stars | written by rhi

Postby sapphic » Wed Apr 07, 2021 7:46 am

STARS
characters: tansyheart and jayheart
word count: 630 date: 13/03/21

    Stars. They scattered the pitch black night sky as if glitter was sprinkled across it. Perpetual reminders of their ancestors up in StarClan glistened down on the cats of DawnClan, while the moon hung at its highest point to denote moonhigh. Crickets chirping created a peaceful ambience as two cats sat alone in the clearing before the Giant Oak.
                  “So, we believe StarClan once guided our ancestors to this very island many moons ago, when they were in need of it most,” mewed Tansyheart, staring across to Jayheart with deep adoration in her amber eyes.
                  “Go on,” Jayheart purred with content. The black-and-white she-cat huddled into Tansyheart’s thick pelt as a chilly climate settled. “I could listen to this all day,” she mewed. Pale green eyes blinked, watching the medicine cat with intense admiration.
                  Tansyheart glanced up at the stars again. “We have so much to thank our ancestors—and StarClan—for, as they found this safe haven for us after all,” she explained. “Oh—!” The cream tabby almost startled Jayheart. “Can you see those stars up there? It forms a sort of tree.” Still listening, Jayheart subtly nodded with her chin propped within Tansyheart’s fur on her back. “That’s Larchstar—she was the cat who led the Clan to this very island as our new home,” she explained pridefully. As a medicine cat, Tansyheart was naturally and fundamentally connected to her ancestors in StarClan.

    Silence ensued for some time. The humming of the crickets steadily grew louder, and the light wind whistled through the trees. Several rustling noises came from behind them in the woods leading back to camp. All was quiet until Jayheart broke the nighttime quietude.
                  “Tansyheart?” Jayheart mewed softly with a certain melancholy undertone in her voice. She sat up slowly, removing her head from where it rested on Tansyheart’s back. Once she stretched her forelegs out, Jayheart asked, “Do you think my dad’s up there?”
                  “I’m sure he is,” answered Tansyheart with sincere honesty. “He’s in StarClan, isn’t he? He could be any one of those stars. Take your pick—where do you think he is?”
                  Jayheart blinked again, glancing up at the blanket of stars and studying it with intense curiosity and interest. Everything about these tiny balls of dust were truly fascinating, and immensely beautiful. The warrior returned the question after some moments of thought, “Hmmm, Smokefang was always such a caring cat. He had a massive heart and he always loved his kits no matter what,” Jayheart mewed. Her words were weighted down by a distinct amount of pain as she recollected the days when her father was still alive. Steadily, she gestured one paw towards the sky. “That one.” Inches above her paw, Tansyheart could make out a haphazard outline of a heart glittering in the night.
                  “He’s right next to Dawnberry’s,” the medicine cat purred contently, sitting up so she would be directly next to Jayheart. Tansyheart also used her paw to gesture the constellation named after her mother, which was positioned a little to the left of Smokefang’s. It resembled a sort of lily flower, at least in the she-cat’s eyes. “What do you think they’re doing right now?”
                  A beat. Jayheart’s tail instinctively coiled around the base of Tansyheart’s, as a sign of affection. “Watching over us, I suppose,” she mewed. “Keeping an eye on us, making sure we don’t get up to any trouble, and that we’re safe and sound” Jayheart’s eyes fell down to ground level once more, and Tansyheart’s shortly followed. Both cats pressed their foreheads together as an act of comfort, and a shrill chirrup from the medicine cat escaped her lips in surprise.
                  “They have nothing to worry about. I’m at my safest I’ve ever been—right here with you,” Tansyheart mewed, still pressed against her mate’s forehead.
Last edited by sapphic on Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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one-shot #2 | first day out | written by fali

Postby fali. » Wed Apr 07, 2021 8:46 am

FIRST DAY OUT
characters: jaykit (jayheart) and smokefang
word count: 412 date: 14/03/21

                   Leaves fell into the clearing and Jaykit found herself counting every one of them. Heatherkit had already rushed out of the nursery, but Jaykit wanted to see what she was running into. Fallowhaze had already retired to her nest, happy for the peace for a few hours. Looking out, Jaykit could see Specklepaw and Pouncethroat coming back from their training. She could see Dewpool taking some herbs to the medicine cat den. She could even see Heatherkit playing with Mistbelly. Just a little bit of courage--that’s all she needed.
                   “You okay, Jaykit?”
                   Jaykit poked her head further out of the thicket to come face to face with her father. Smokefang blinked at his kit before sitting next to the entrance.
                   “... There’s a lot out there,” Jaykit mewed, looking at her paws. Smokefang’s ear twitched in amusement as he leaned down to match his kit’s height.
                   “You know, I remember being scared to come out from behind the hay,” Smokefang purred. He ignored the confused glance his kit gave him. “But my father coaxed me out by letting me climb on his back. He took me all around the barn and introduced me to every cat that lived there. Then, when I was feeling tired, he took me back.”
                   “Was it scary?” Jaykit squeaked. She couldn’t help but look out at the vast clearing once again. The nursery itself was spacious, but it wasn’t dominated by the blue sky. It felt safer in there. But she also couldn’t imagine Smokefang being as nervous as she felt. He was so big and strong and respected!
                   “Very. But, I got used to it and well, now, look at me.” Smokefang ruffled his fur. “Your clanmates are waiting to greet you! And I’m sure Heatherkit is looking for her littermate.”
                   Upon looking at Jaykit’s nervous demeanour, Smokefang leaned down so that his belly pressed against the ground. He motioned his tail to flick to his back. Jaykit nervously took a few steps out of the nursery and looked at Smokefang with confusion. “Climb on,” he instructed.
                   Immediately, Jaykit clambered onto his back, claws grasping at his fur as Smokefang heaved himself up. Feeling the claws of his kit digging into him made him flinch for a moment before turning his head. “Are you on tight?”
                   “Yeah! You can see the whole camp from up here!”
                   Smokefang purred in amusement as he trotted his first steps away from the entrance. “Well then, you better hold on tight.”
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one-shot #3 | belonging | written by rhi

Postby sapphic » Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:24 am

BELONGING
characters: brackenpaw and troutsplash
word count: 802 date: 21/03/21

    The rising sun through the trees in the east side of the island denoted morning; it was the beginning of a brand-new day in DawnClan. Fresh green leaves forming a canopy over the forest suggested newleaf was fast approaching. A group of newly-made young apprentices gathered in front of the camp, circled around two senior warriors on the grassy bank. Excited mews babbled around the area. It was going to be their first patrol, and their first time outside of the DawnClan camp boundaries. For the first six moons of their lives, most kits wait in anticipation for this moment to finally come.
                   Yet there was one apprentice who hadn’t joined the group. Brackenpaw quietly sat, alone, at the entrance to the warrior den. Her fluffy tail curled around her body and gently settled across her paws. With an uncertain look in her amber eyes, Brackenpaw observed the group preparing for patrol from afar, unsure whether or not she should join them. Compared to the apprentices by the river, she couldn’t help but feel isolated and different.
                   Brackenpaw’s ears instinctively turned backwards as she heard a noise coming from behind her. A deep voice filtered through, and she turned her head to see a magnificent dark grey tabby emerge from the leaders’ den. “I’m surprised to see you here,” Troutsplash meowed solemnly. He padded across to where Brackenpaw sat. “I expected to see you right at the front of the patrol—you’ve been excited to go for moons now.”
                   “I was!” Brackenpaw mewed defensively, feeling the fur along her spine prick up. She stared down at her paws as she sheepishly corrected herself, “I still am! It’s just—I don’t know. I want to go, but looking at the other apprentices, I don’t know if I really belong here.”
                   “You belong here just like any other cat,” Troutsplash attempted to reassure the downbeat apprentice. “It doesn’t matter if you weren’t born—”
                   “I wasn’t born here, not like the rest of them,” Brackenpaw continued with apparent disregard for what the tom was trying to say. Then, with a sad glisten in her eyes, “we don’t even know if I even have warrior blood.”
                   Troutsplash purred in thought. “You and I both know the warrior blood is an old cat’s tale,” he mewed, perching himself beside Brackenpaw, who merely glanced over at him with sadness in her eyes. “Warriors are trained, not born, that’s what DawnClan has believed for moons. And you, my dear apprentice, can definitely make a fine warrior.”
    The she-cat’s eyes lit up. “Really?”
                   “Really,” Troutsplash repeated earnestly. “I’ve watched you playing in the clearing with your brothers. You’re fierce and brave; you’re determined to keep up with them, despite your small size back then. That’s what should be valued in a warrior, not whether you were born into the Clan.”
                   Brackenpaw’s eyes shimmered with pride. “And then I caught up to them eventually! I’m almost as big as Larkpaw!” With a content purr, Brackenpaw proudly stood up on the spot, boasting her thick, acorn-brown pelt. She wasn’t quite the same size as her largest brother, but she wasn’t far off. It was as though Troutsplash instantly changed Brackenpaw’s tune with a few words of praise. Troutsplash was the next best thing to a father, and to him, she was the next best thing to a daughter.
                   “That’s the Brackenpaw I was trying to coax out,” Troutsplash mewed cheerfully, content as he watched the young apprentice confidently bask in his praise. “If you ask me, you belong in DawnClan as much as any other cat does. No matter where you came from, you’re a DawnClan cat now, and I have all the faith that you’ll become a great DawnClan warrior.”
                   The handsome tom didn’t expect to feel a small, soft head suddenly crashing into his chest, and as he glanced down, Brackenpaw was purring loudly into his fur. He couldn’t help but feel a sense of glee as the she-cat appeared all the more content compared to a few moments ago. Out the corner of his eye, he caught sight of the two senior warriors beginning to set off with the apprentices. “I see they’re about to go—it’s not too late if you still wish to join them.”
                   Brackenpaw backed away and glanced around at the patrol for herself. “Of course I do! Well, now I do, thanks to you,” she mewed. With a flick of her tail, Brackenpaw hastily padded out of the camp towards the riverbank. Confidence from Troutsplash’s honest words held her posture high as she quickened her pace. He was right: DawnClan was Brackenpaw’s home and no matter where she came from originally, she was raised in DawnClan. She belonged here. And she was going to become the great warrior Troutsplash talked about. Brackenpaw wanted to make him proud.
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one-shot #4 | near miss | written by rhi

Postby sapphic » Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:34 am

NEAR MISS
characters: finchsong and honeyclaw
word count: 901 date: 06/04/21

    The first signs of leaf-fall hung in the atmosphere as leaves fell to the forest floor, a mixture of oranges and yellows before a she-cat’s eyes. Stalking through a clump of brambles, remaining crouched, pale green eyes fixed on a small vole scuttering beneath the undergrowth. With all determination and anticipation rushing to her paws, the she-cat continued to creep out of the brambles and into the open, refusing to take her eyes off the unsuspecting rodent.
                   She wasn’t hunting to satisfy her own hunger, but rather to compete with Honeyclaw from CloudClan. They decided to hold today’s hunt over on DawnClan’s island for a change of scenery.
                   The cool leaf-fall breeze ruffled Finchsong’s long, mottled-and-white coat as she proceeded to follow the vole. It signalled sunhigh was approaching, which only made the she-cat even more tenacious; her and Honeyclaw’s hunting patrols always ended when the sun reached the highest point in the sky. Suddenly excitement coursed through Finchsong’s blood as she steadied her position two rabbit-leaps away from the vole. This was it, she thought. Just one more, and I’ll show Honeyclaw just who’s the better hunter. Her mind flashed back to the piles of fresh-kill she left buried beneath the fallen leaves. Surely Honeyclaw’s amount of fresh-kill wasn’t going to come close.
                   A couple more noiseless pawsteps and Finchsong was within pouncing distance of the rodent. At her fullest alertness, swaying on her haunches, the she-cat prepared to finally jump and make the kill. This was it. She was going to win. Blood pulsed through her ears in anticipation until . . .
                   Honeyclaw!
                   Staring straight ahead, Finchsong caught sight of the short-haired she-cat, crouching within a fox-length of a small creature. This must have been its first leaf-fall out; it was still reasonably small and very vibrant red in colour, its bushy tail poking up as it foraged for nuts ready for leaf-bare. It was a red squirrel! Honeyclaw observed the creature as it scampered across the clearing with unwavering, hungry eyes, ready to make her pounce. Finchsong had moments to choose: the tantalizing prey before her, or her Clan’s code.
                   Within moments, Finchsong made her decision. “Honeyclaw! No!” Finchsong yowled from the edge of the clearing. Hackles raised along her spine, she leaped across to Honeyclaw, leaves kicking up behind her in her wake. From the sudden moments, the vole scuttled away at an instant. When Finchsong collided with Honeyclaw’s blindside, she caught her off-guard, causing the two she-cats to tumble over and over as they rolled along the forest floor. They finally lost momentum, with Finchsong landing on top, instinctively pinning Honeyclaw to the ground.
                   But a glint of surprise flashed upon Finchsong’s eyes as she stared down at the CloudClan cat, taken aback by how close they were. The two cats’ noses were less than a mouse-length’s apart. Their eyes remained locked in the moment, utterly speechless.
    It was Honeyclaw who twisted and writhed free from underneath Finchsong’s grip, and immediately shaking the leaves that had become tangled in her pelt. Finchsong felt too stunned by their encounter to even playfully fight back; she merely stood there, panting.
                   “You mouse-brained fool! I almost had it!” growled Honeyclaw. Strangely enough there was no sense of shock. At least, as far as the she-cat was letting on.
                   Finchsong shook her head as if to clear her thoughts. “You know the rules!” she meowed, ignoring Honeyclaw’s puzzled look. “Red squirrels are off-limits while we’re in DawnClan territory! We don’t hunt let alone eat them here!” In DawnClan, red squirrels have always been viewed as sacred creatures—for as long as they were rife around the Giant Oak, the ancient tree with connections to StarClan. Finchsong was lucky she caught sight of Honeyclaw in time.
                   Honeyclaw drew forelegs up to a sitting position, folding her white tail comfortably over her paws. “Oh . . . Oh, yes. I am sorry about that,” she mewed solemnly, though her face wasn’t giving away anything else that might hint at what she was thinking.
                   “You’re not used to it, I suppose.” With a flick of her tail Finchsong narrowed her eyes playfully then slowly blinked across to Honeyclaw. Oddly enough, Finchsong didn’t even feel angry with the other she-cat in the slightest. After all, it was probably her own fault for not making it clear at the beginning of their hunting patrol.. “Anyway—” she took a quick glance through the treetops and noticed the position of the sun “—it’s sunhigh already.” A brief pause ensured as Finchsong decided what to do next. “Let’s meet back at camp, gather our fresh-kill along the way and compare.”
                   As Finchsong started to leave, Honeyclaw instantly sprung to her feet at the idea. “Okay,” Honeyclaw answered simply as she darted off at these words. “We’ll see who the real winner is after all!” she called back, with a kind of charming glint in their eyes.
                   Finchsong held back for a few moments, gathering her thoughts about the minor incident that happened. There was something about being that close to Honeyclaw that made her heart . . . but Finchsong vigorously shook her head, as if to clear her thoughts, and she bounded after Honeyclaw to follow the trail fresh-kill she had buried.
                   “Wait for me!” Finchsong called out. Confidence held her high as she chases Honeyclaw back to the DawnClan camp. “We all know I have won!” she mewed playfully.
                   “We’ll see about that!” Honeyclaw called back.
Last edited by sapphic on Sat Apr 10, 2021 10:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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one-shot #5 | rabbitfoot's betrayal | written by fali

Postby fali. » Thu Apr 08, 2021 9:49 pm

RABBITFOOT'S BETRAYAL
characters: specklepelt and rabbitfoot (rabbit)
word count: 1117 date: 07/04/21


    Specklepelt made her way down the hill. Her eyes blinked with sleep as the sun began to rise above them. Her best friend, Rabbitfoot, raced ahead, waiting for Specklepelt at the bottom of the hill. Her stumpy tail waved Specklepelt forward as Specklepelt rushed forward. The two walked flank on flank as they made their way into the dense forest below.
                  The forest was very dangerous if a cat went on their own. CloudClan cats were taught from the nursery to never leave the camp alone. With the level of exposure CloudClan faced, threats from the sky and threats from the ground were a consistent problem. Two cats were better than one. At least Rabbitfoot seemed eager to hunt with me this early, Specklepelt thought, it seemed like she didn’t want to talk to me for moons. Ever since Robinstar appointed Specklepelt as her deputy, Rabbitfoot seemed to act distant and cold. At least things seem to be different now.
                  “Come on,” Rabbitfoot urged as they padded through the path. She lifted her head and sniffed the air for any scent of prey.               “We have to go further.”
                  Specklepelt glanced warily. “What if there are badgers on a morning hunt? We’d be in danger.”
                  “And we’re two of the best warriors. Robinstar didn’t appoint you deputy for no reason!”
                  Specklepelt glanced away sheepishly as her ears flattened. She was still surprised about the trust Robinstar placed in her. She could still remember the days where she tried and failed to pass her warriors assessment--and now, she had the potential to someday lead CloudClan. Yet Specklepelt couldn’t help but feel bad for Rabbitfoot. Ever since they were barely weaned onto fresh-kill, Rabbitfoot had her sights set on someday becoming leader. I couldn’t imagine coming so close to my dream and being overshadowed.
                  “I suppose you’re right,” said Specklepelt, a deep purr rumbling from her throat. She couldn’t help but feel pride for her position. Being deputy did have challenges but Specklepelt had faced them head on. She was the best deputy she could be! How could her promotion have been a mistake?
                  The stones of the path prickled Specklepelt’s paws as they padded deeper into the forest. She sniffed the air. Her ears pricked up at the scent of a blackbird that pecked at the ground beneath a large oak. She raised her tail to alert Rabbitfoot to the hunt as she dropped into a hunter’s crouch. After a few steps forward, she launched herself at the blackbird, swiftly biting into the neck after trying to avoid the attacks from the wings. “Thank you StarClan for this prey,” Specklepelt murmured under her breath.
    Dropping the blackbird to bury, the breath flew from Specklepelt’s lungs as she felt something heavy lunge into her back.
                  Specklepelt screeched for Rabbitfoot to help her before she managed to shake the body off. Her eyes widened in horror. Rabbitfoot? The she-cat’s face contorted into fury as she bared her teeth. Specklepelt’s blood ran cold as Rabbitfoot’s claws unsheathed for another attack. Specklepelt found herself frozen as she allowed Rabbitfoot to tackle her to the ground. Was Rabbitfoot aiming to kill me?
                  “What in StarClan’s name has gotten into you?” Specklepelt growled as Rabbitfoot pinned her down. She hissed in pain as Rabbitfoot’s paw glided down Specklepelt’s underbelly, blood trickling from the wounds. Her mind raced with potential motives Rabbitfoot could have. She heard about trouble from Crow, an exiled warrior of DawnClan. Had Crow set her up to this? Surely not.
                  “Robinstar appointed you as deputy?” Rabbitfoot spat. Specklepelt grimaced as she felt the claws dig into her belly. “It took you moons longer than me to even become a warrior. Even Dovetuft became a warrior before you. It’s clear that in everything I’m better than you. Why are you deputy?”
                  “Robinstar trusts me. StarClan approved her decision, if any cat has a problem with it, at least they aren’t trying to kill me over it!” Specklepelt hissed as the claws dug deeper.
                  “Well, maybe you can ask StarClan why they approved it!” With a screech, Rabbitfoot raised a paw up to slash Specklepelt’s muzzle. Taking this as her moment, Specklepelt pushed her hind legs up and threw Rabbitfoot off. Specklepelt scrambled to her feet, hackles raised as her eyes glared at Rabbitfoot. The other she-cat didn’t seem alarmed as her hisses filled the air.
                  “What is killing me going to achieve? Won’t they suspect you?”
                  “Look around,” Rabbitfoot hissed. “We’re in a forest known for badger and fox attacks. Many cats have died here. You’d just be another one!” As she finished her explanation, she lunged for Specklepelt, Specklepelt barely dodging. Specklepelt leapt for Rabbitfoot’s back, biting into the scruff of Rabbitfoot’s neck. Rabbitfoot screeched as she flung her body around, Specklepelt releasing her grip.
                  “And what? You’re going to say you found my body?” Specklepelt rose to her feet, baring her teeth.
                  “And I’ll be known as the bravest warrior in the clan. Robinstar would have no choice but to choose me as her next deputy.” Rabbitfoot lunged for Specklepelt’s throat, the she-cat barely ducking out of the way. While Rabbitfoot struggled to get up, Specklepelt leapt on top of her, pinning her down.
                  “I’m not going to let you get back to camp,” Specklepelt growled. Her claws unsheathed, digging into Rabbitfoot’s belly. Her tail lashed from side to side as her ears pulled back, hisses escaping her. Her claws sank into the flesh until she drew blood, feeling it clump under her paws. “You’re going to run. No cat of CloudClan would try to kill a clanmate. Especially their best friend.” Her breath hitched in her throat before she yowled again. “I trusted you!”
                  “Maybe you should’ve stepped down as deputy. You knew that was my dream!”
                  Specklepelt lashed her claws over Rabbitfoot’s face. Rabbitfoot howled in pain as blood trickled from the claw marks. “I earned that position! I worked harder than any apprentice, any warrior! Robinstar trusts me! Why couldn’t you settle with that?” Specklepelt sighed, claws remaining unsheathed as Rabbitfoot scrambled up. Rabbitfoot’s eyes glistened in a newfound fear, paw rubbing against the face wounds. Specklepelt hissed. “Get out of here! And StarClan help you if you ever set foot on clan territory ever again.”
                  Rabbitfoot’s eyes remained in fear before darkening to anger. “StarClan help you when I get you alone again.” With the threat, she stumbled into the forest.
                  Specklepelt’s eyes glittered in grief as she felt the blood dripping from her belly. She was exhausted—she had to get back to camp. How was she going to explain this to Robinstar? To Dovetuft? And from Rabbitfoot’s threat, her life would never fully be safe again.
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