Please take the time to read through our Newleaf Announcement for how our five Clans will be merging into three, led by our current active leaders (Silverstar, Owlstar, and Clovermask/star).
We also have a territory contest where we're challenging members to come up with what the Clans' territories will look like after disaster strikes! Prey and badges are among the rewards for participating!
Happy New Year! After the tumultuous year 2020 brought us, staff have decided to extend the December hiatus into January!
High ranks are not required to meet their usual post quota, and you are still free to roleplay, but things may be a little slower around the site!
Staff are recovering from the year as well, so please be patient with us, as it may take some time for us to accept applications and update things. Let's make 2021 a great year for Fate!
** Special Note: Another predator will be spotted in the valley in the coming days. Keep an eye out for the next batch of the Tooth & Claw event!
They'd followed their deputy further and further away from home, climbing steadily into the mountains to escape the rising waters. Several times they had to stop as exhausted apprentices and queens collapsed and were given time to rest before continuing on. Echoshade kept having to pick up kits that fell out of their nests as their mothers' collapsed one after the other on the long trek. When she could she curled up with the ones that lost their energy, and when she couldn't she encouraged them to carry on.
Everyone was tired and soaked with mud and debris from the river, and worse. There weren't near enough heads for everyone to be present. She didn't know what had happened to them, but had to hope they'd just been separated and would return soon. Eventually Lilygleam called for them all to stop, backed in against a sheer cliff where the rain and wind couldn't get to them as much.
"We'll stop here for now, find some prey and get everyone fed. Wait for Silverstar."
Silverstar, who had been behind everyone, was nowhere to be seen. Echoshade went to lie down amongst the queens and their kits, even offering to groom some of the younger apprentices so that their pelts weren't as dirty. Anything to comfort the shell-shocked youngsters and their exhausted families. The elders fared little better, most being pulled along by younger members of the clan to pile along near the queens and kits while those still strong enough to went hunting. This was unfamiliar territory, but everyone had to eat.
Skyteller had received an omen the day before. He wasn't entirely sure what it meant, but he had been crouched by one of the pools, half-dozing as he listened to the rain drip through the opening in the roof. One drop had jerked him back to awareness as it struck him on the nose and he snorted, giving his head a short, sharp shake before glancing down. More drops came, almost deliberately splashing into the pool and creating ripples. Everything else seemed to fade away as vague images flashed: a silver-and-black tabby with piercing blue eyes- his ears ringing with the shrill cries of newborn kits- and a shapeless mass of cats huddled beside a river that churned hungrily.
A sharp gust of wind ruffled his fur as he sat up, and at the same moment a feather drifted down, landing in the water. It was plainly obvious as an eagle's feather, but Skyteller didn't think the bird it had come from had anything to do with the message. Gently he reached out and caught the feather on his claws, nipped it in his teeth, and carried it to his nest.
By morning, while not certain of what exactly the message had meant, he'd reached a decision. He thought it might have something to do with Moonfeather, who he'd taken in just the morning before- perhaps the face he'd seen was one of her family? Maybe they were looking for her. So, he'd informed the Tribe, got together a patrol, and sent them off. Storm, Lizard, Roar and Dark moved quickly, heading toward where Moonfeather had been found. It wasn't Moonfeather's family they found needing help, however, but a different group- RainClan- and Storm was the one to offer the Tribe's cave as shelter for the Clan who had nowhere else to go.
Post by Fawntastic on Sept 15, 2019 10:52:02 GMT -5
Hope when you take that jump
One, two, three, four. Russethawk had obssessively counted each of his kits as they made the arduous trek into the mountains. His paw pads ached, but his back was straight and his eyes were keen, fending off tiredness so long as his family was in danger. He brushed pelts with Ashflight, not for the first time grateful and appreciative of Ashflight's past experiences with the mountains. "This isn't how I pictured introducing our kits to the mountains," he murmured once the group had stopped, flicking water from his left ear. "StarClan, what a day."
The panic sitting in his chest had receded the further they'd gone from RainClan's swollen waters, the sharp, stinging memories of his parents' deaths ebbing with the shift in landscape. His kits would not drown. There had been a couple scares - but no tragedy had happened, not on his watch.
"Everyone got their rumps on the ground?" He spoke with paternal authority to his offspring, "Good. Keep them there until your mother or I say otherwise."
Nearby, Lotuswhisker was grooming Rosekit and Sunkit, Piketooth keeping a weary eye on Splashkit, with Sablekit getting the same treatment from a sodden looking Bitternwing. Ashflight and I can go hunting, he realized, numb with fatigue. But no queen in their right mind would want to be away from her kits in a strange location; he didn't want to be away from them, but as their father, their protector, their provider, he would hunt until his paws bled.
Russethawk brushed his muzzle with his mate's. "I'll see what I can find. Any advi--"
The ragged bunch of RainClan cats stirred, tense and afraid as foreign scents clashed with the smell of river water and fear. The Tribe! The fur along Russethawk's back, raised and prickly as a pike's, slowly lost their stiffness. He was still on guard, even when a cat introducing himself as Storm, the Tribe's lead cave-guard, offered them shelter and food. Russethawk breathed a soft sigh of relief; Lilygleam stepped up to handle this latest development, and Russethawk again consulted with Ashflight.
She was the mother of his kits. His mate. If she wasn't comfortable going with the Tribe - then they'd just have to think of something else.
Ashflight was not the strongest swimmer. She could manage better than most non-RainClan cats, sure, but within her Clan she couldn’t hope to compete. The flood, therefore, had taken an immense toll on her, not only having to keep herself afloat, but panicking over her four kits who absolutely could not brave the rushing waters at the same time. But she was a survivor, and she would not lose any more of her family. Adrenaline still ran rampant through her, keeping her alert and the worst of the exhaustion that was soon to set in at bay. Sunkit had had a very close call and she was keeping an even closer eye on him. Of all her kits to try swimming the flood on their own, he had not been the one she’d expected to try. A wary eye was cast over Sablekit, her little warrior with everything to prove.
At least she felt safe enough, traveling in such a large group, and with the weather what it was, that she didn’t feel it was necessary to keep too close an eye on the sky. It was unlikely even the largest eagles would try to attack a group this large, even if there were vulnerable kits in the open. Russethawk brushed against her and she sighed at his half joking words, “No, me neither.” And when for once her mate spoke sternly rather than playfully with their kits, it came as a half amusing surprise to Ashflight. She flicked his flank with her tail, an attempt at humor that only he seemed to ever bring out in her, “I wonder if they’ll take you seriously. I suppose the flood will have put fear enough in them to make up for it, though.”
Splashkit was certainly content enough to stay where he was; tired, wet, cold, and hungry. He took what shelter from the rain he could under Piketooth’s forelegs, staring out at his siblings with a fearful, tired gaze. She went to each of them and bent to lick them between the ears in turn, “You’ll all be safe now. The water can’t reach us up here.”
Splashkit’s ears flattened, replying grumpily, “The rain’s reaching us just fine.”
She nosed his cheek gently, “You’ll survive. And that’s what matters.” She returned to Russethawk’s side and he brushed his cheek against hers, prepared to heed Lilygleam’s orders to hunt, when a strange scent washed over them. Immediately Ashflight’s claws extended, her sodden fur bushing as she ensured her kits were well behind her and protected. She still stared warily at the group even after they introduced themselves and offered their aid, tail flicking anxiously at the proximity of strangers to her kits, but she forced her claws sheathed. Turning her attention back to Russethawk, she sighed, “It would be good to let them help… they know how to survive in the mountains. In this weather, it’s not likely any of us are going to catch much in the way of prey. I would have a hard time myself. Usually when the weather was this bad I’d just find shelter and wait it out rather than waste my energy coming up with nothing. No cat will die of hunger in a day.”
Everyone was on edge, soaked and exhausted and looking for family and friends. Cats were still struggling to rejoin the clan, dragging themselves along one after the other. But it wasn't everyone. It wasn't enough cats coming back, and that caused pain in her heart. Echoshade counted the heads of her grown offspring once again, then started counting friends one after the other. Still no Silverstar, and where were Willowbreeze's kits? Too many cats hadn't shown up yet, and she was starting to believe that they'd been lost. She prayed hard to StarClan, if they lived please send them back to their families, and if they had passed guide them on to the happiness they deserved. Guard the ones left behind. She curled up tighter with the pile of queens and kits, of those too exhausted to go on just now. Had her best friend lost a life? And those precious kits new to the clan lost their lives before they'd truly began?
And then an unfamiliar scent, cats coming from the mountains through the pouring rain to the bedraggled RainClan cats. Offering a place to stay, a place to recover, somewhere out of the rain and the cold. She saw Lilygleam approach them ahead of all others, serving as their deputy and having to speak for the clan while Silverstar was missing as he was now.
"We accept the offer. RainClan will not forget this kindness towards us." The deputy was trying to rally them, despite everything. They would have to find the strength to make it a little further, and Echoshade was prepared to have to carry exhausted kits or pull along a nest as needed. Though she was tired and cold from the swim in the river she wasn't going to give up yet.
"Gorgeleap, Brookfall, go find your brother. Bring him back." Echoshade had to quietly laugh at the aged she-cat's order to her sons. She couldn't blame her though, she would have demanded someone go look for her offspring too if one of them were missing.
-- So close. He was almost there. His paws were bleeding from StarClan only knew what, and the kits were mewling in the makeshift nest he'd made for them. They were hungry, they needed their mother. He'd cleaned them, kept them warm, fussed endlessly over them. He just wanted to rest now. He hurt all over, and he didn't even want to think about the fact that he'd lost a life. He was following the scent of his clan, the familiar scent and distinct pawprints left in the wet ground.
"Hang on little ones, we're almost there." He told them, keeping his tone as soothing as possible given how panicked he felt inside. He just wanted to curl up and go to sleep for awhile, but knew he couldn't. The clan needed him, and right now his kits needed him too. He might not be able to claim them in a effort to keep them and their mother safe, but they were his. He had a duty to protect the kits of his clan, and to get these especially back to their mother. Willowbreeze must have been frantic by now, if not outright in mourning. They had been on the river side, alone and their nest destroyed. He shuddered. If he hadn't come up when he had they would have died of the cold, helpless and alone. So in a way, had StarClan forfeited one of his lives in order to bring him to the kits? He liked to think so, and it was well worth it.
As he got closer he heard voices, some familiar and some not so much. But his focus was on the barking tone of his mother, ordering his brothers to go and find him. "No need, mother, I'm here." He recognized Skyteller as well, and pulled the nest along behind him before plopping down on top of it to rewarm the kits. "Forgive me for not greeting you properly, but the kits have to be warmed." He lifted his head and looked around for the mother of said kits. "Willowbreeze! I've brought you presents."