Ravenfrost sat in front of the warrior’s den, meticulously grooming herself before going on the day’s dawn patrol. The sleek black she-cat often participated in the dawn patrol, not so much because she was eager to start the day, but because she was awake anyways, grooming herself. Her nest, although comfortable, left flecks of grass dust and threads of wool on her pelt. Sure that was fine for some cats, like her sister, who could get away with a certain amount of litter in their fur, but Ravenfrost had no such luck. If she wanted to keep her fur looking healthy and smooth then she had to get up early to groom; it was the price of being beautiful, after all.
She lifted a delicate paw to nibble down her nails which, much to her distress, had splintered slightly during yesterday’s hunt. “Stupid rabbits,” Ravenfrost growled as she tugged at a bothersome shard, peeling it away from the rest of her nail, “had to go running on the stones, made me chip my nails.” She spat the shard out on the grass. At least she had caught the rabbit in the end and that almost made up for it. Almost.
Ravenfrost looked up from her last claw to check the time—the sun had finally peeked over the horizon, meaning it was time to patrol. The dark warrior stood and stretched her legs and spine, tail tip quivering, then shook herself to fluff out her pelt against the sharp leaf-fall wind. The moors always felt the chill first. Some day, she promised herself, she would take the evening patrol instead and stay cozied up in her den for a few hours of extra sleep.
Dawn patrol had been decided the evening prior, before every-cat bedded down, so she knew exactly who she was patrolling with. Ravenfrost nosed her way into the Warriors den once more to collect Shadeheart and Windspirit, the other warriors joining her on patrol. The other, Thunderpaw, was still an apprentice—might as well let him sleep just a little bit longer. “Shadeheart? Windspirit? It's time to get up! Patrol time!” Ravenfrost whispered cheerfully. She gave the she-cat's a gentle nudge with her paw for good measure. “Wake up sleepy whiskers!”
The nudge of a paw and the voice whispering in her ear dragged Shadeheart from sleep; her eyes peeled open and she gave a reluctant groan that stretched into a yawn. "I was dreaming," she complained, rubbing a paw over her face. "Mmm, rabbit. I could go for one for breakfast."
But duty called, and though she might be allowed a small meal, it was only fair to save the choice pieces for the kits and their mothers. Maybe she could sidetrack and get something on the way back, after the patrol. That sounded ideal.
Now all she had to do was get through the patrol. Rising to her paws, Shadeheart arched her back in a stretch before stepping from her nest and padding toward the entrance. The top of the opening brushed the tips of her ears, and the cold dawn greeted her. Bushing her pelt against the chill, Shadeheart shook out her fur in case anything was clinging to it and then turned her head toward the camp's entrance.
"Gonna be a cold walk," she muttered- loud enough for the two warriors to hear if they were close enough. Then her head turned the other way, toward the apprentices' den. "Is Thunderpaw awake yet, Ravenfrost? I'll go get him if not."
Post by Ghost the Undead Goddess on Dec 13, 2019 5:26:27 GMT -5
18 Moons, LightningClan
I hear the wind across the plain, A sound so strong, that calls my name
Her dreams were so pleasant.
Racing happily across the moors as the Greenleaf sun beat down brightly though not too unbearably hot just yet. The wind, her constant companion as her paws tore through the coarse grasses of the open meadow.
That familiar, woodsy scent reached her nose as the young tabby paused upon a hilled junction in the ground, turning her head to spot the handsome Bengal tom trailing her ever so slightly, happiness and warmth comfortable upon his face.
A purr rose within her chest as the young tom made his way to her side, only moments before she pressed her face against his neck, dipping her head beneath his chin. She could feel his own purr, vibrating within his throat, it was all so seemingly real.... “Shadeheart? Windspirit? It's time to get up! Patrol time!”
Everything around her grew blurry, fuzzy around the edges as a voice broke through her consciousness, pulling her from the delightful scene within her sleep deep mind. Almost immediately, Windspirit felt the familiar ping of sadness that Leopardheart wasn't curled up by her side within the Warrior's Den.
Exhaustion dragged at the silver tabby's paws as she shook out her fur, attempting to cast it aside despite the yawn that broke past her jaws. She wasn't often one to sleep in, usually awake just as the sun was but last night she had been out rather late.
The warrior tom from her dream was from Treeclan, Lightningclan's neighbor. The two had met several times as apprentices but only for short occasions as youngters were generally allowed by themselves without a fully named cat.
But now they had the full freedom that came with being a warrior, and there were some nights they were spend with each other under the light of the moon, secertly away from their clanmates. It was technically against the code, but Windspirit didn't see the problem with having a friend from Treeclan.
She couldn't help it, she missed him constantly. The way her heart skipped or her skin glowed beneath her pelt whenever he was around. Those handsome yellow pools upon his face, and that warm smile that cause her stomach to flip.
She wished more than anything that Leopardheart was apart of Lightningclan.
Giving another shake to wake herself, the young warrioress bounced to her feet. Pale green pools were suddenly bright with life, ready to race her paws across the moors once more. She could practically hear her namesake calling for her beyond the walls of the den.
Making her way past Ravenfrost and Shadeheart, the younger of the three gave a loud purr of greeting, as she wasn't one for much talking. Though, despite that Windspirit had a unique way of communication through her ever readable facial expressions.
Brushing her tail against the blind she-cat beside her, the silver tabby gave a small bounce on her paws in almost an excited kit-like manner before giving a small trilling noise. Eyes bright, the silent excitement that went through her head easy to read upon her face.
I'll go wake him!
Thunderpaw was her brother after all, and she was very pleased to be spending the morning patrol with him. He was currently the only one of the four siblings that had left to earn his name. Windspirit and Sleetnose had earned theirs together, and Lightningstripe earned hers not long after.
Without giving the other two another second to respond, the leggy feline slipped through the entrance to the warrior's den and happily trotted towards the den she once slept in to rouse the young tomcat from his own sleep.
Poking her head in, Windpspirit immediately found her brother's similar pale tabby form snoozing happily, chest rising and falling with each slow breath. Parting her jaws in a smile, nothing fell in the form of a call but she did slip forwards to press against him in her own way of greeting.
She continuously nudged him as that purr grew within her chest until he begin to stir, a smile wrapping around her muzzle, pleased with the fact she was able to wake him up. Her tail waved happily behind her.
Mornings were no fun – especially almost-leaf-bare mornings that felt like they would freeze his paws off the minute he stepped from the den – but early mornings were the absolute worst. His brain had a tendency to churn late into the night, keeping him awake with those creeping thoughts that he’d rather ignore, so it was with bleary eyes and a general unhappiness that he was roused from a deep slumber by his sister. “One more minute,” He complained, shifting away from the purring she-cat to throw a paw over his face. As the nudging continued, he opened one yellow eye to peer at her with measured displeasure.
It didn’t take a genius to figure out what she wanted given that he’d had all night to dread the early morning that awaited him, but the knowledge of that particular obligation did not make him any more inclined to move. The tabby tom weighed his options. In the past, he had discovered that if he simply stalled long enough, the exasperated patrol would eventually leave without him, letting the stubbornness for which he was known earn him a few more wonderful hours of sleep in his warm nest. That particular strategy was to be used sparingly, however, lest the warrior in question find someone who he could not so easily ignore – Blazefang, for one, and Cloudyfeather, for another. Even Mudpelt had his moments, though those were few and far between and usually accompanied by so much eye-rolling that he was sometimes surprised that his eyes didn’t roll right out of his head.
As he eyed the tabby she-cat, however, his desire to out-stubborn the patrol faded to a dull roar. Though he was closest with Lightningstripe, Windspirit and Sleetnose still held special places in his heart, and he did make somewhat of an effort to not annoy them as much as he did the rest of the clan. The yellow eye closed. Letting out a massive sigh, he enjoyed a few final peaceful moments in the warmth of his nest before gathering his fortitude and pushing himself to his paws with the gravity of one marching to his death. “D’you think we could all just say we went on patrol and go back to sleep?” he asked the she-cat, not really expecting an answer. “I think that sounds like an amazing idea, myself. ‘Yes, Owlmind, everything was all peaceful and quiet. It’s almost as if the rest of the world decided that sleeping in when it’s cold is a good idea – I vote we try that next time.’” He scoffed. Like that would go over well.
Ravenfrost and Shadeheart waited for them in the middle of camp, and as they approached, Thunderpaw fell into place beside his sister. His warrior sister. One of three warrior sisters, to be precise. He was the only one of their litter who still called the apprentice’s den home, and it bothered him more than he would ever admit. So what if he bent the rules just a tiny bit every now and then? It wasn’t his fault that he was somehow otherwise busy every time someone decided to lecture. He was multiple seasons beyond the due date for his warrior ceremony now, and it was getting more than a little bit ridiculous. He knew how to hunt. He knew how to fight. He knew everything there was to being a warrior.
He was ready.
No he wasn’t, they said. They wanted maturity. They were as boring as Mudpelt. His brain stuttered to a halt for a moment. Mudpelt as leader – wasn’t that a horrifying thought. If his uncle were leader, he’d likely be an elder before he’d be deemed mature enough to be granted the responsibilities of warriorhood.
The apprentice hid a yawn, already regretting the decision to forsake his comfortable nest for the unforgiving cold of the pre-dawn morning, before putting on his usual impish grin. If he was good at one thing, it was putting on a show (though he was, in fact, good at many other things as well, thank you very much). He looked around at the assembled cats and saw no sign of movement. “Are we all standing around waiting to see how long it takes for a cat to turn into a block of ice?” His tail flicked as he made a motion back toward the apprentice's den. “Well, I, for one, am not particularly interested in that endeavor, so if that’s case, I will be seeing you all later.” He had a warm nest with his name on it.
Ravenfrost was fond of Shadeheart, and of Windspirit, but Thunderpaw annoyed her. He was one of those 'paws that just got right under her pelt. The worst part about it was that she felt sorry for the young tom having to watch his sisters become warriors without him. She supposed that any apprentice would be a bit grouchy if that were the case, but what annoyed Ravenfrost the most was that Thunderpaw seemed to have a knack for getting out of his duties. She was glad when Shadeheart offered to wake him up, and even happier that Windspirit ended up doing it. If Ravenfrost had to do it she might lose her temper, and if she ever wanted an apprentice she would need to avoid a reputation for cuffing them about the ears in their own nests.
"Gonna be a cold walk."
Ravenfrost waited until Windspirit went to fetch Thunderpaw to reply.
"Yeah. It's gotten colder every morning. I'm going to have to start grooming inside the den if it gets any colder, or else my fur will start to freeze." Ravenfrost's whiskers twitched at the thought of her fur standing on end in cold icy spikes. "Jokes aside, I think it'll be a cold leaf-bear this season."
Windspirit and Thunderpaw soon emerged and the patrol was complete. Not soon enough, either, as Ravenfrost's paws were beginning to ache with the cold. She could see that Thunderpaw had been reluctant getting out of his nest, and the impish look on his face made her spine crawl with distaste.
“Are we all standing around waiting to see how long it takes for a cat to turn into a block of ice? Well, I, for one, am not particularly interested in that endeavor, so if that’s case, I will be seeing you all later.”
Of course Thunderpaw was going to start the morning off this way. Ravenfrost's tail flicked, "No, we were just waiting to see who would die of old age first before you got out of your nest." she growled, "For your information, we're going to check on the borders this morning, and keep a special eye out for foxes or badgers. With leaf-bare coming, they're going to start getting desperate."
Ravenfrost got to her paws and shook out her pelt. "All ready?" Of course they were ready. Ravenfrost led the way out of camp and towards the border with Stoneclan. The temperature was stubbornly cold all the way, but Ravenfrost was glad that it wasn't raining or else she would be cold and her fur would be messed up.
Once they approached the border with Stoneclan Ravenfrost began renewing the scent markers, checking that Stoneclan had been doing the same. "All clear over here. Reeks of Stoneclan though, yeesh, I'll need to wash for moons to get that scent off me...they must have already been by." She nodded towards Shadeheart, even though the she-cat couldn't see her, "All good over there, Shadeheart?"