Post by Fawntastic on Jul 12, 2021 10:51:10 GMT -5
They made for Demon's Den at first light. It didn't feel like enough. Brackenstride paced outside the wide entrance of the dead lynx's lair, collecting grit and dirt between the pads on his feet from all the repeated movement. Nearby, Pumastar was talking to his deputy, Mossheart. The mild-mannered tom always yielded to Pumastar's more intense decisive nature - even when the dream Falconstorm and Sagepaw conveyed sent ripples of fear through just about every cat old enough to make sense of it.
Brackenstride could take it no longer. As the ground rumbled beneath him again, the sleek tom whirled on the dark pelted Clan leader, inserting himself in the conversation without warning. "We're wasting time! What makes you think we're going to be safe here? We need to get higher up."
Pumastar fixed him with a poisonous stare. "Ah, yes, so we can all be wiped out by a landslide. Very good advice."
Brackenstride glared at him. "So you think waiting around for the worst to happen is better? At least we'd be doing something. Getting the elders and the kits to safety."
He watched as the dark pelt began to spike along the ridge of Pumastar's spine, and their nearby Clanmates - all clustered in and out of the massive lynx's den - began to sense the building tension. With the valley holding its breath already, the dislike between Brackenstride and Pumastar felt palpable.
"We will wait and see. To blindly go into the mountains will be the end of this Clan your beloved father loved so much. To reach the Tribe is to cross the valley." Pumastar noticed the dozens of eyes upon him, and raised his voice so that all might hear their leader's words. "We will stay here until it is safe again to travel."
A surge of anger made Brackenstride unsheathe his claws, but instead of trying to get his point through Pumastar's stupid thick skull, Brackenstride too added his voice to the throng. "Or we can leave now, and make it to the Tribe in time."
An insidious hiss came from the mouths of a few of his Clanmates, many shocked, displeased, at his blunt steamrolling of the cat chosen by StarClan to lead them. Pumastar's voice was low, and full of warning, speaking so close to his ear, it felt like the words would burrow in like parasites. "Watch. your. tongue."
He refused to give Pumastar the satisfaction of knowing he had rattled him. Brackenstride lurched away from the dark brown tom, even as Mossheart tried to calm everyone's nerves with soft, rational words. Idiots. Both of them. We can't stay here. The ground...
"I'm going to the mountains to find the Tribe. Any cat who thinks that's the best course of action, follow me." Brackenstride glanced at Timberfrost, Minktoes, and Foxfur. If we survive this... There was going to be trouble later.
The rumbling intensified, shooting up through their paws and into their bones until it was almost too painful to stand. The rocky exterior of Demon's Den seemed to quake, pebbles and dirt and debris falling loose as the rumbling got even worse. Brackenstride's whole body felt electrified, fear pushing adrenaline through his veins at record speed. Any semblance of order in TreeClan crumbled, just as the earth split open beneath them and the valley pulled itself a part.
"To me! TreeClan! To me!"[/b] He shouted hoarsely above the deafening noise, and the resounding snap of falling timbers sent his stomach into a fearful heave. No!
"Get to higher ground, now!" Pumastar was shouting also, broad shoulders sending Clanmates scurrying towards the treeline, trying to funnel the chaos in a direction that wouldn't spell immediate death. Brackenstride saw Ivyclaw in the confusion, clawing her way over a fallen limb towards Demon's Den. They shared a look. Get Lilybreeze out of here.
StarClan help them.
45 Moons TreeClan Tom