Leader: Sky of the Night (Nightsky)-a pure black she-cat
Deputy: Halfmoon (Half the Moon)-a whitish-grayish tom
Healing Cat: Swiftfoot (Swift on her Feet) –a grayish- bluish and white she-cat
Starynight (Stary Night) –a gray tom
Sunset (Setting of the Sun) –orange tabby tom
Sunrise (Rise of the Sun) –yellow she-cat
Duskpelt (Dusk of the Night)-brown tom
Darkmoon (Darkest Shade of Moon)-black she-cat
Cometblaze (Blazing Comet) –a golden tabby she-cat
Sunstrike (Strike of the Sun) –a golden tabby tom
Cloudwillow (Cloudy Willow) –a fluffy gray she-cat
Skywatch (Watcher of the Sky) –a cream colored she-cat
Wintersky (Sky of Winter)-white-gray tom
Midnightshadow (Midnight’s Shadow)-a ginger tabby tom
Risingspirit (Spirit Rising)-gray tabby she-cat
Asteroidleap (Asteroid’s Leap)-a silver and gray she-cat with black blotches and one blind eye
Breezetail (Tail in the Breeze) –a black and grey tabby she-cat with white markings
Dusttail (Dusty Tail)-a dusty pale brown tom
Duskfur (Dusk Fur)-a dusky dark brown tom
Hitchclaw (Hitch)-black and white tom
Roseheart (Rose)-a brown she-cat
Starflight (Star’s Flight)-an orange tortoiseshell she-cat
Moonshift (Moon’s Shine)-a blue tabby tom with a unique fur pattern
Meteorflare (Meteor’s Flare)-a red tabby tom with two unusual yellow stripes on his forehead
Weatherstorm (Stormy Weather)-a blue and white she-cat
Icywind (Ice of Wind)-a pale yellow tom
Fireeclipse (Fire Eclipse)-a handsome orange tom
Snowpetal (Petal of Snow)-a whitish-reddish she-cat
Dawnflower (Flower at Dawn)-dawn colored she
Shinningnight (Shinning Stars of the Night)-a white she-cat
Skypelt (Pelt of the Sky) -bluish-grayish she-cat (retired early due to failing sight)
Leader: Fur in the Gorse (Gorsefur)-greenish-brownish tabby tom
Deputy: Tallbreeze (Tall Trees in the Breeze) gray tom
Jadestep (Step of Jade)-a white she-cat with black spots
Summerair (Summer in the Air)-an orange-yellow-reddish she-cat
Rainstorm (Storm with Rain)-blue-gray tom
Stormcloud (Stormy Cloud)-blue-gray tabby tom
Windpool (Wind by the Pool)-bluish she-cat
Cracklefur (Crackle of Lightning)-brown tabby tom
Boomingthunder (Booming of Thunder)-grayish tabby tom
Whirlwind (Whirling Wind)-a silver tabby she-cat
Sunshadow (Sun’s Shadow)-a pale yellow she-cat
Lightningshear (The Lightning’s Shear)-a black tabby tom
Sonicboom (Sonic Boom)-grey she-cat
Horizonflash (Flash of Horizon)-a golden brown tabby tom
Graydawn (Dawn of Grey)-grey she-cat with white paws
Floodwater (Flooding Water)-blue-gray she-cat (mother of Rainstorm’s kits; Thunder (black and grey she-cat and Tycoon (a blue and white tom)
Lightningscar (Scar of Lightning)-an orange-yellow tabby tom with a scar running down his eye onto his neck
Leader: Fur of Crystals (Crystalfur)-pure white she-cat
Deputy: Winterair (Air of Winter)-white-blue she-cat
Firefrost (Fire’s Frost)-a red tabby tom
Hawkfrost (Frost of Hawk)-brown-white tabby tom
Frostytrail (Trail of Frost)-a black tom with jet white paws
Icyclaws (Claws of Ice)-a pure white tom
Hailfoot (Sky of Hail)-white-gray tom
Snowstorm (Storm of Snow)-white she-cat
Coldfangs (Fangs of Cold)-pale white tabby tom
Icecloud (Cloud of Ice)-pure white tom
Clearsnow (Clear Snow)-pale gray tabby tom
Icefire (Ice Fire)-a blue tortoiseshell tom
Frostfire (Frosty Fire)-gray she-cat
Frostflower (Frost Flower)-a black she-cat
Jetfrost (Frosty Jet)-black tom with a white tail
Northstar (Northern Star)-black and white tom
Snowfern (Ferns in Snow)-tortoise shell she-cat (Mother of Frosytrail’s kits (Frosted-a grayish-whitish tabby tom and Flake-an unusual black spotted she-cat)
Snowdrop (Drop of Snow)-a bluish and whitish she-cat (mother of Icecloud’s kits; Blizzard-bluish-grayish she-cat and Chill-white tabby tom)
Dewspot (Spots of Dew)-a gray she-cat with one huge white spot on her back
Leader: Tail of Cinder (Cindertail)-brown she-cat
Deputy: Redlight (Light of Red)-red tabby tom
Healing Cats: Bigheart (Big Heart)-a brown tabby tom who is completely blind
Ivyleaf (Ivy’s Leaf)-brown-greenish she-cat
Goldenheart (Heart of Gold)-yellow she-cat
Silverfoot (Foot of Silver)-silver tortoise shell she-cat
Smokynose (Smoky Nose)-a smoky black tabby tom
Ashtail (Ash Tail)-a white-brown tabby
Springshine (Sign of Spring)-white-brown she-cat
Blackheart (Heart of Black)-pale black tom
Pinefur (Fur of Pines)-short haired tabby tom
Waterflow (Water’s Flow)-bluish white tom
Rebelstreak (Rebel)-a light brown tabby tom
Greenpoppy (The Green Poppy)-a reddish-black she-cat
Swiftheart-a blue and white she-cat
Kinkpelt (Pelt of Kink)-gray-brown she-cat
Morninglight (Morning Light)-a tortoiseshell she-cat
Forestleaf (Forest Leaf)-grayish greenish tortoiseshell she-cat (mother of Pinefur’s kits; Blossom-a yellow and red tabby she-cat and Light-a black tom)
Runningrainbow (Running Rainbow)-white tom
Tawnyfur (Tawny Fur)-tortoise shell she-cat
Dustfur (Dusty Fur)-dusky pale brown tabby tom
Ripplepelt (Ripple Water)-dark gray tom
Leader: Weasle Fur (Weaslefur)-brown tabby tom
Deputy: Shrewfern (Shrew in the Fern)-gray tabby tom
Voleear (Vole’s Ear)-pure white she-cat with two brown ears
Birchfall (Falling Birch)-light brown tom
Earthwing (Wings of Earth)-brown tortoise shell she-cat
Rabbitfoot (Rabbit’s Foot)-white she-cat with pale brown paws
Mousewhisker (Whiskers of a Mouse)-a brown tabby tom
Grizzlynose (Grizzly’s Nose)-a black tom with a huge nose
Beetleeyes (Eyes of a Beetle)-greenish-grayish she-cat
Birdtrail (Trail of a Bird)-red-brown she-cat
Harespring (Spring of Hare)-white-brown tabby tom
Toadpelt (Toad’s Pelt)-dark brown tabby tom
Bumblestripes (Stripes of a Bee)-an unusually black stripped tom
Squirreltail (Squirrel’s Tail)-a ginger she-cat with a bushy tail
Starlingfeather (Starling’s Feather)-a reddish she-cat
Wolfclaw (Wolf’s Claw)-a brownish gray tabby tom
Beestripe (Bee’s Stripe)-a pale yellow tabby tom with black stripes
Hawkeye (Hawk)-dark brown tabby tom
Leopardpath (Final Leopard Path)-an orange she-cat with an unusual black spotted fur pattern
Snaketeeth (Snake’s Teeth)-whitish black she-cat with razor sharp teeth
Lionroar (Lion’s Roar)-yellow tabby she-cat
Coyotehowl (Coyote’s Howl)-grey and white tabby tom
Eaglescreech (Screech of an Eagle)-yellow she-cat
Bluebird (Blue Bird)-bluish she-cat
Fishtail (Tail of Fish)-a silver-white she-cat (Mother of Harespring’s kit (Bear-a white tabby she-cat)
Dragonfrost (Dragon’s Frost)-red and black she-cat (mother of Wolfclaw’s kits; Lynx-black and gray tabby she-cat with white and Lynx-a gray and black tabby tom with unusual spots and stripes)
Tigerheart felt surprisingly confident about going to the meeting; he was going to show Sky Tribe that he was the ‘tiger’! You see, tonight was the night that Tigerheart had to go to the meeting at Fern Bush. Tigerheart could smell Swiftfoot outside of the den, as she padded inside. Before she could even open her mouth, Tigerheart pushed past her and out of the den. “I’m not going to let Swiftfoot bring me down tonight.” he muttered enthusiastically. Once it was completely dark, Tigerheart snuck silently out of camp; making sure not to drag attention to himself since not everybody was asleep. Don’t forget to be careful of the night patrol, he reminded himself. As quiet as a mouse, Tigerheart padded over to the Swift Tribe border. He sniffed the air with his black nose. “Swift Tribe cats were just here for their last patrol.” muttered Tigerheart silently crossing the border. As he was halfway through the territory, he felt a heavy blow on his side. Tigerheart looked up to see Leopardpath pinning him down. “What are you doing here Tigerheart?” spat Leopardpath. “I’m going over to Fern Bush to meet my fellow healing cats for a meeting.” lied Tigerheart. All of a sudden Leopardpath released Tigerheart slowly. “You’re not going to Fern Bush to meet healing cats are you?” she asked. “You’re crossing into my territory to meet the cats that were chosen to stop the fires aren’t you?” Tigerheart looked at her in surprise. “Don’t look that way Tigerheart.” snarled Leopardpath. “I’m one of them; one of the chosen ones.” Tigerheart nodded his head. “Fine.” he meowed dryly. “I’m representing Star Tribe’s chosen one.” “Then let’s go.” snapped Leopardpath racing away. “We’re wasting moon light.” Tigerheart raced after her to the Tornado Tribe border of Swift Tribe. As they neared, Tigerheart could sense that every cat was already there. “Who’s there?” growled a familiar voice. “Oh. It’s just the other two chosen ones.” Tigerheart stepped into the clearing; Greenpoppy, Summerair, and Icefire were all waiting. “Hey Tigerheart.” greeted Greenpoppy, one of the members from the last quest. Tigerheart nodded his head in greeting. “Now that we are here, what do we do?” asked Icefire. “Maybe we should go to sleep?” suggested Greenpoppy. “In between two borders?! No way.” snapped Summerair. “How about at the River of our Ancestors?” asked Tigerheart. “Let’s give it a try.” mumbled Leopardpath. “Take the lead Tigerheart and don’t forget to tell us what to do.” Summerair ordered.
“This is the River of our Ancestors?” exclaimed Greenpoppy. “It looks beautiful.” The water was dazzling in the moon light with the twinkling stars looking down upon the five cats. “Can we go to sleep already and find out why we are here?” snapped Icefire impatiently. “In order to connect with Sky Tribe, we need to lap up the water five times in rhythm and then lay down to sleep.” ordered Tigerheart. “Let’s do this.” meowed Leopardpath. All five cats licked lapped up five mouthfuls of water and curled down; ready to begin their quest.
Tigerheart opened his eyes. All four cats were starting to get up. Out of the undergrowth came Heatherbracken and Spottedsong. “Hello there my warriors and apprentices.” greeted Spottedsong warmly but was cut off as she saw Tigerheart. “What are you doing here Tigerheart?” asked Spottedsong coldly. “I am here for the meeting and you aren’t going to stop me.” spat Tigerheart fixing a fierce gaze on the she-cat as if to challenge him. But Spottedsong just gave him a hopeful, kind and soft look. “Welcome back.” purred Spottedsong. All the other cats stared at them in confusion but Leopardpath broke the silence. “Are we going to start this or not?!” “Oh right.” meowed Heatherbracken. “Why were we all given the same dream?” asked Icefire. “You have been brought here because; as Greenpoppy and Tigerheart know since they were on the other quest before this one. You have all been summoned by Sky Tribe because a great and deadly threat could destroy the five tribes once and for all.” explained Heatherbracken in a wise voice. All cats were silent with fear. “But what is the threat?” asked Summerair breaking the silence. “And why were we chosen? Why us?” “The threat to the tribes has killed many cats; like Cloudysun, Fogwater, and maybe even Willowsleet.” continued Spottedsong. “S-s-s-so you’re saying that the fires are the danger?” stammered Leopardpath. “I’m afraid so Leopardpath.” muttered Tigerheart. “But we don’t really have time to explain everything; as long as two cats know than surely we can start our quest?” “Of course.” meowed Spottedsong. “But why would Sky Tribe choose us to stop the fires?” repeated Summerair. “You five have been chosen because you each have a power that no other cat has. But these powers only exist when we summon you to help us with something.” explained Spottedsong. “I don’t mean to make this question sound like mouse dung but why can’t Sky Tribe cats fight off the fires?” asked Icefire. “Well you see, it’s kind of hard to explain so I’ll just say this; we are spirits of once living cats but they are souls which means spirits are of kind, courageous animals but souls are filled with hatred and the taste for blood which means they can kill, even when they are dead. “That sounds awful.” exclaimed Tigerheart shaking his pelt. “But we need to hurry up.” “Tigerheart’s right Spottedsong.” agreed Heatherbracken. “They need to start their quest.” Spottedsong nodded her head. “But what kind of powers do we have?” asked Tigerheart. “Oh right.” exclaimed Heatherbracken. “Oh!” cried Leopardpath. “Do mine first!!” Heatherbracken sighed. “Your power, Leopardpath, is a great sense of smell. You can smell things that are farther out than the territories!” explained Spottedsong. Leopardpath opened her eyes wide. “Really?!” Leopardpath sniffed the air. “I really can!” she yowled. “Let’s test it out.” suggested Summerair running away. Leopardpath sniffed the air. “She’s cutting corner through Sky Tribe’s territory; now she’s talking to Brightlight and she’s zooming back towards us.” reported Leopardpath as Summerair shot through the undergrowth. “Well,” she panted. “Did it work?” Tigerheart looked at her amazed. “It sure did.”
Tigerheart waited for Icefire to come back after they had just found out that Icefire could run even faster than a Tornado Tribe cat. They also found out that Summerair had excellent hearing and that Greenpoppy could never be detected because she was super sneaky that no one could see her unless she wanted them to. But Sky Tribe hadn’t told Tigerheart about his power. “What is my power?” he asked. All cats went silent, waiting for an answer from Spottedsong or Heatherbracken. Both cats looked at each other. “We don’t exactly know. He is the tiger so we thought he had already found out.” murmured Spottedsong just loud enough for everyone to hear. “Ok enough secrets!” snapped Greenpoppy. “What do you mean by the ‘tiger’?” Murmurs of agreement started to rise. “Fine.” sighed Heatherbracken. “Long ago, before most of you were even born, a prophecy was given to a young healing cat named, Swiftfoot. The prophecy for told that ‘When Night falls, a New Night will Rise and a Moon will be third but only the tiger will know the answer.” All five cats went silent. “What did the prophecy mean?” asked Leopardpath suspiciously. “The prophecy indicated that when Silence of the Night dies, Sky of the Night will become the future leader of Star Tribe and that Sky of the Night shall appoint Halfmoon as her deputy.” explained Spottedsong. “So you forced her to be leader and to choose Halfmoon as the deputy?!” asked Greenpoppy in bewilderment. “No of course not.” replied Spottedsong calmly. “Sky of the Night could’ve backed down if she didn’t want to be deputy or future leader and she choose Halfmoon because she thought he was the perfect fit.” “So I was part of the prophecy?” asked Tigerheart trying not to forget that Tiger was the actual cat in the prophecy. “Sky Tribe doesn’t know everything, Tigerheart.” sighed Spottedsong. By now, Tigerheart’s head was spinning with all new information. But what was he to do if he didn’t even know his own power in Sky Tribe? Icefire broke into his thoughts. “So now that we know the prophecy, can we get going to stop the fires and the Evils?” “Oh right.” exclaimed Heatherbracken shaking her head. “Since Tigerheart and Greenpoppy were on the last quest, they will explain everything and show you the hide out. Good luck.”
Soon after they had settled into their ‘camp’, the five cats started to decide what to do next. “Maybe some of us should guard the border between Sky Tribe and the Eerie Forest.” suggested Leopardpath. “I don’t think that’s a good idea. If one of the Evils sees us then they won’t come onto this side of the border since we can’t go into their territory since we want to look like we’re not a threat.” Summerair pointed out. “But eventually we’ll have to be a threat.” growled Icefire sheathing and unsheathing his claws. “Maybe two of us could hide in the dense undergrowth and spy on the souls when they come into our territory.” exclaimed Tigerheart thoughtfully. “Good idea Tigerheart.” meowed Greenpoppy. “Who should have first watch?” “I’ll go.” meowed Summerair. “After all, I do have very good hearing since that’s my power.” “Well I’ve got a great sense of smell so maybe I should go too.” exclaimed Leopardpath. “I don’t think so.” protested Tigerheart. “We need you to help us sniff around the border; I think Greenpoppy should go instead since she can’t be detected.” Leopardpath nodded. “Fine, I’ll help you with tracking.” As Greenpoppy and Summerair raced off, Tigerheart started to feel more confident then when he first got here as he focused on their mission and not that Midnightshadow and Cometblaze weren’t his real parents. “So what now?” asked Icefire who had been silent the whole time. “Let’s go and look around the border.”
“Nothing.” snarled Icefire as they came back into camp. “Not even you, Leopardpath could pick up a single scent of the Evils.” Tigerheart started to panic, what if the dog souls had no scent? How would they be able to be ready for them? Tigerheart struggled to remain calm. “Maybe we should see if Greenpoppy and Summerair have seen anything.” suggested Tigerheart hoping to lift everyone’s spirits. “It’s worth a shot.” mumbled Leopardpath.
“We saw some of the dog souls.” reported Summerair as they padded into camp.” “Really?” asked Icefire. Greenpoppy nodded her head. “Yes, they walked into Sky Tribe’s territory and stole some of our prey.” “Did you attack it?” asked Leopardpath. “What?” meowed Summerair. “You never told us we had to attack it!” “So you let it escape with some of Sky Tribe’s prey?!” shrieked Leopardpath, her fur bristling in rage. Greenpoppy’s ears flattened as she drew her lips back into a snarl. “You told us to watch them, not to attack them.” she spat defensively. “That’s enough.” snapped Tigerheart lashing his tail for silence.
Tigerheart went into the hunter’s crouch but his tail hit a pile of leaves giving away his position to the mouse he was trying to catch. Tigerheart chased after it but the mouse went into its hole before he could pounce on it. “Fox dung!” he spat as we padded fustratedly back to camp with no fresh kill to eat for himself. Tigerheart sighed and started to groom his tangled fur as everyone at their catch hungrily. “No luck?” asked a voice unexpectedly. Tigerheart looked up to see Greenpoppy’s green eyes stare at him as she prodded a silver fish towards him. Tigerheart nodded his head in thanks a he gulped down the unusual prey in hunger.
Tigerheart wondered if it would ever be sun down in Sky Tribe. They had patrolled the Eerie Forest border five times and there was still no moon to be seen in the sky above them. “What do we do now?” asked Summerair drowsily. “I feel like I could sleep for two seasons.” Murmurs of agreement rose from them. “Let’s go to sleep.” meowed Icefire racing back to camp. As all the cats raced off, Tigerheart stayed behind, he wanted to explore Sky Tribe’s territory. “Are you coming?” asked Leopardpath impatiently. “I’ll come in a bit.” he cried after her. Tigerheart raced off; he had no idea where he was going. All of a sudden a flash of orange and white fur stopped him in his tracks. “Now just where do you think you are going?” snapped a very familiar voice that sounded more young than old. “Cloudysun!” purred Tigerheart. Cloudysun’s orange eyes went wide with grief. “Tigerheart!” se meowed in a surprisingly healthy voice. “I feel like I haven’t seen you for ages! How’s Star Tribe doing?” Tigerheart wanted to reassure her but he couldn’t. “Well,” he meowed steadily but was interrupted by another familiar voice. “Greetings Tigerheart. I didn’t expect you to be here to early.” purred a black tom. Tigerheart’s green eyes opened wide in amazement. “Silence of the Night!” “Why are you here?” asked Silence of the Night curiously. “I’m here for a quest.” explained Tigerheart. Silence of the Night narrowed his eyes but didn’t question any further. “So how is Skypelt?” asked Silence of the Night. “Skypelt is retiring to the elders den early because one of Rainbow Tribe’s warriors clawed her right in the eyes.” explained Tigerheart. The black tom went silent as grief overwhelmed him. Tigerheart tried to get his mind off of Skypelt. “Anyway, Breezetail kits, Dusttail and Duskfur are now warriors.” Silence of the Night swelled up in pride. “That’s great; more healthy, strong, short tempered warriors for Star Tribe.” he purred in amusement. All of a sudden a gray she-cat padded up to them. “You must be Tigerheart?” asked the she-cat. The tom nodded his head. “Aren’t you Risingmoon?” Risingmoon nodded her head. “Yes but I died before you were born.” explained Risingmoon. “That’s why you didn’t recognize me at first.” Tigerheart felt like grief was going to overwhelm him. “But you said you were on a mission right?” asked Silence of the Night. “Then I think you should get some rest.” Tigerheart nodded and flicked his tail in farewell to his former tribe mates as he raced back to the Eerie Forest border.
Tigerheart woke up and stretched his back. The tabby tom blinked in surprise as he looked around, he wasn’t in Sky Tribe’s territory. Tigerheart looked around and started to have a feeling that he knew where he was. Am I inside the Eerie Forest, he asked himself. All of a sudden he heard a rustling noise. Panic flared in his green eyes as he ducked into the thick, dark, mossy trees. The vines in his face blocked Tigerheart view. All of a sudden one of the monsters was right in front of him as it spoke these bone-chilling words. “Nothing can stop us. You die like everyone else and then we will rule the forest.”
Summerair gasped as they saw another one of the Evils cross into Sky Tribe’s territory. After Tigerheart had told them about his dream, Summerair decided that all five of them should watch the dog souls to try and find a strategy to stop them. Tigerheart shivered as he saw the soul pad back into its own territory. “We have to attack soon.” spat Leopardpath racking her claws across the ground. “Then let’s do it.” growled Tigerheart. “What?” snapped Icefire. “Are you mouse brained, Tigerheart? We need to find out their strategy.” “They don’t have a strategy.” explained Tigerheart. “They don’t have one since Sky Tribe cats can’t fight them off so they don’t even have a plan to attack them with.””But then why didn’t they attack and take over Sky Tribe’s territory yet?” asked Summerair sounding a bit convinced by Tigerheart’s theory. “They want to make Sky Tribe suffer.” answered Tigerheart. “He’s right.” growled Greenpoppy. “We need to act now.” All of a sudden, Heatherbracken and Spottedsong were racing towards them in horror. “No.” panted Spottedsong. “You will not attack them. Not yet. You don’t know how to us your powers properly.” “But then what have we been doing the entire time?” objected Tigerheart crossly. “You have been trying to figure out their strategy which they didn’t have.” explained Heatherbracken. “And now that you think you are ready, you must, each night, go to The River of our Ancestors to train with Shudderpelt and Mistypool.” All the cats looked at each other in dismay, but nodded their heads in agreement, after all, how could they defeat the Evils without some proper training?
Tigerheart gasped and woke up beside The River of our Anscestors. Greenpoppy, Summerair, Icefire, and Leopardpath started to stir from the cold breeze that ruffled their fur. “I’ll see you guys tonight.” murmured Summerair in farewell as she padded back into her own territory along with Icefire as he went through Tornado Tribe’s territory to get to Winter Tribe. Tigerheart sighed and padded into Swift Tribe’s territory with Greenpoppy and Leopardpath. “Also,” Leopardpath started before going back to camp. “Just because we are fighting the danger together, doesn’t mean you are welcome in Swift Tribe territory.” she spat threateningly before bolting off. Greenpoppy looked at him in amusement. “What ruffled her pelt?” teased Greenpoppy.
Tigerheart flicked his tail in farewell as he dashed back to camp. He skidded to a stop at the entrance. He sniffed the air; no cat was awake yet. Tigerheart raced silently all the way to the healing den, making sure not to wake anyone up. “Tigerheart?” hissed a voice as he came in the healing den. “What are you doing out there?” Tigerheart met a pair of pale blue eyes that stared at him in suspicion. “Nothing.” meowed the tabby tom calmly. Swiftfoot stood up and stretched. “Well,” meowed Swiftfoot as she yawned. “We should collect some herbs.” Tigerheart nodded.
The pale brown tom arched his back for a giant stretch. His pale blue eyes searched the warriors den for any sign of Duskfur. Dusttail spotted Duskfur still sleeping. It had been one season since Duskfur had gotten his dream telling them that Halfmoon was Tigerheart’s father. Maybe he’s having another dream, thought Dusttail. Then I better not disturb him. All of a sudden a white and brown head popped up from the back of the den. “Dusttail?” hissed Asteroidleap. “What are you doing?” “I-I-I was just going to go for a little walk.” stammered Dusttail. “Oh, ok. Can I join you?” she asked standing up and shaking her mossy pelt. Dusttail nodded his head in the tiniest bit of delight. He needed someone to take things off of his mind.
As the two young warriors padded out of camp, the sky started to lighten in a beautiful show of colors. Dusttail sighed. “Is there something bothering you, Dusttail?” asked Asteroidleap in concern. As much as Dusttail wanted to tell her about the dreams and quests, he couldn’t betray Tigerheart’s and Sky Tribe’s trust. “Nothing.” lied Dusttail shaking his head. “It’s just, I’m worried about Weatherstorm, and how she’s doing.” Asteroidleap looked at him in surprise. “What do you mean? Weatherstorm is doing great!” “I know it’s just, maybe we should take her out?” The she-cat nodded. “Let’s go.”
“Wake up Weatherstorm.” hissed Dusttail gently as he prodded his apprentice. Weatherstorm hissed in annoyance but didn’t wake up. “Wake up!” growled Dusttail. “Otherwise you can’t become a warrior!” Weatherstorm jumped out of her nest like a scared mouse. “But I want to become a warrior!” wailed Weatherstorm. “Keep your voice down.” snapped Dusttail. “We’re going to be battle training with Asteroidleap. Follow me.”
“Good job Weatherstorm!” meowed Asteroidleap as the young apprentice caught a squirrel. Her blue eyes gleamed in the glistening sun as she looked at her mentor in pride at Asteroidleap’s praise. Dusttail nodded her head. “Yes. Good job Weatherstorm but I think we should head back to camp…” All of a sudden they heard a blood curling shriek. Dusttail raced towards the sound with Asteroidleap and Weatherstorm behind him. At the exact same moment, Tigerheart and Swiftfoot raced towards a pile of orange fur. “Icywind!” wailed Weatherstorm racing up to her brother. “What happened?” asked Asteroidleap rushing up to Icywind. Swiftfoot gasped. “He ate a deathberry!” she shrieked as she pointed at a bush with scarlet red berries. “Go get me some yarrow now!” ordered Swiftfoot as Tigerheart raced off. “Is there anything we can do?” asked Dusttail in panic. Swiftfoot nodded her head. “Yes. You and Weatherstorm fetch me some moss for Icywind.” Dusttail raced off with his apprentice. “Do you know where lots of moss it located?” asked Dusttail impatiently. The she-cat nodded and raced off. Dusttail followed behind her. I hope we’re not too late, he thought.
Dusttail and Weatherstorm quickly surrounded Icywind with moss. “Is he going to survive?” asked Sky of the Night racing down the slope with Tigerheart.
Yarrow leaves fell beside Swiftfoot as Tigerheart gently placed them down. Tigerheart knew that there was one question on every cat’s mind; would Icywind survive? Tigerheart had a sickening feeling that the young apprentice wouldn’t survive. But Tigerheart didn’t give up. “Tigerheart, since you’ve never expelled poisons from a body, you will be starting it. You have enough experience.” explained Swiftfoot calmly. Tigerheart nodded and sat beside Icywind who was letting out a silent yowl of panic and pain. Tigerheart quickly chewed up some yarrow and put it in the apprentice’s mouth. When Icywind didn’t swallow it, Tigerheart pushed it gently down the apprentice’s throat. When he didn’t see the apprentice vomit, Tigerheart started to panic as he felt the apprentice’s heart beat. Icywind had stopped breathing. Tigerheart stepped away, his mouth in a silent shriek of agony. Swiftfoot padded over to Icywind and put her ear against his chest. Swiftfoot stopped away and bowed her head in respect. “We’ve lost him.” she addressed the cats around her. Weatherstorm looked at her brother’s lifeless body and ran away. “Let her be.” whispered Sky of the Night to Dusttail as he got ready to race after her. “Dusttail, Asteroidleap, bring his body back to camp.” Tigerheart padded behind his mentor; it was all his fault that Icywind was dead. “It’s not your fault.” murmured Swiftfoot as if she could read his mind. “Icywind must’ve been laying out there for a while till he could actually make a sound. I don’t think any cat could’ve rescued him.” Tigerheart sighed. “But how will Snowpetal and Wintersky react to this? They’ll think it’s all my fault.” Swiftfoot put her tail on his shoulder. As they padded into camp, a terrifying shriek sounded from the nursery. “What happened?” meowed Wintersky in panic as he saw his son. “Will he survive?” “No Wintersky, Icywind is already dead.” whispered Swiftfoot so everyone could hear. Snowpetal flung herself through the crowd. “Icywind is dead?!” she shrieked. “Who did this? I’ll tear their eyes out.” “It wasn’t anyone.” meowed Swiftfoot calmly. “Then how did he die?” asked Breezetail looking at Duskfur and Dusttail. “He ate a deathberry.” replied Tigerheart. “What?” meowed all the cats together. “I know Icywind can do stupid things but he’d never eat a deathberry on purpose.” meowed Meteorflare. “That’s because he didn’t.” meowed Tigerheart. “If you look at him closely, he looks as skinny as a mouse in winter.” Swiftfoot looked over the dead apprentice. “By Sky Tribe! Tigerheart’s right! It looks like he must’ve been so hungry that he would’ve ate anything.” “Then who let my precious kit starve?!” snarled Snowpetal furiously. For the first couple heart beats, no cat moved. Then, a basically muffled voice spoke up. “It was me.” All the cats turned around as Risingspirit lowered her head. “You let my kit die of hunger?!” screamed Snowpetal. Wintersky held his mate back as she was about to hurl herself at the warrior. “Now hold on Snowpetal!” growled Sky of the Night. “Let her tell us her half of the story.” “Well, it all began this morning, I saw Icywind heading over the kill pile but I knew that yesterday, Icywind and I had been on the last patrol of the day and I let him eat his second meal of the night since he said he was hungry. Then I told him that meant he wasn’t allowed to have any kill in the morning until he had hunted for the tribe but he must’ve been super hungry because the next thing I knew…” Risingspirit stopped as she looked at his body. “I’ll never have kits again.” wailed Snowpetal racing into the to-be-mothers den. Wintersky sighed and bowed his head. “Hey, where’s Weatherstorm?” asked Wintersky anxiously. “She ran away, s-s-she was one of the cats to witness Icywind’s death.” explained Tigerheart. “But I’ll get her if you want me to.” interrupted Dusttail. Wintersky gave him a cold stare. “No. She’s witnessed enough horrors today.”
Chamomile, Feverfew and Dandelion leaves went flying everywhere as Tigerheart tripped over a rock. “Mouse dung!” Tigerheart cursed under his breath. All afternoon, Swiftfoot and Tigerheart had been giving Snowpetal herbs to make her calm down but nothing could stop Snowpetal’s heartache. “We can’t do anything to calm her.” meowed Swiftfoot coming in the den to help Tigerheart with the herbs. “Has Weatherstorm returned yet?” asked Tigerheart as Swiftfoot handed him Feverfew. Swiftfoot shook her head. “No.” The experienced healing cat apprentice let out a sigh. All of a sudden his ears perked up. “Hey,” exclaimed Tigerheart. “Isn’t it tonight that all the healing cats go to The River of our Ancestors?” Swiftfoot immediately dropped all her herbs that were in her mouth. “Oh by Sky Tribe it is! Mouse dung! I was so busy that I forgot and it’s almost time to go!” “But tonight we must sit vigil for Icywind?” protested Tigerheart. “Mouse dung! Ok, first we’ll clean up all these herbs and then we’ll sit vigil with Icywind till it’s time to go.” muttered Swiftfoot half to herself. Tigerheart nodded his head as he started to sort.
“Tigerheart, it’s time to go.” whispered Swiftfoot as she looked at the darkening sky. Tigerheart stretched his stiff legs as he stood up from his short vigil of Icywind’s death. “Where are you guys going?” asked Sky of the Night coming up. “We’re going to The River of our Ancestors.” explained Swiftfoot. “Oh mouse dung!” whispered Sky of the Night. “I totally forgot after Icywind’s death and everything that has been going on lately.” “So have we but we must be going now.” meowed Swiftfoot racing away.
“Sorry we’re late.” meowed Swiftfoot as they raced up the hill to where all the healing cats we waiting.” “Finally.” growled Bigheart. “What took you so long?” “We had to sit vigil a bit for Icywind.” explained Tigerheart quietly. All the healing cats bowed their heads in respect. “I’m sorry Tigerheart. That must be hard for you.” whispered Sonicboom as they walked up the hill. “Believe me, Sonicboom it was harder for Weatherstorm, Icywind’s sister especially after she had to witness his head in front of her very own eyes.” muttered Tigerheart. Tigerheart looked back to see that all the other healing cats had slowed down. Swiftfoot shot him a curious stare. As they reached the river, Swiftfoot sat down and so did all the other healing cats. “Tigerheart,” started Swiftfoot excitedly. “You are a loyal, yet wise healing cat. It is time for you to carry on that wisdom for another generation.” Tigerheart’s fur tingled with excitement as he stepped up to face his mentor. “Tiger’s Heart, I now call upon our Ancestors to look down on this young healing cat and to protect him until his time comes to go and join you. Tigerheart, do you wish to uphold the healing cat and the code till you die?” “I do.” replied Tigerheart happily. “Then in Sky Tribe’s honor, you are now a full healing cat of Star Tribe!”
“Roseheart, where are we?” asked a familiar voice. Tigerheart woke up instantly and looked around. He was in Sky Tribe and just a distance away he could see Hitchclaw and Roseheart looking around frantically. “What are you two doing in Sky Tribe?” hissed Tigerheart coming up to them. Hitchclaw whipped around. “Oh hey Tigerheart. We don’t know how we got here. We went back to our twolegs and we went to sleep and then we found ourselves here.” “Well, since you are here, this is Sky Tribe. This is where all dead cats go to watch over their own tribe.” explained Tigerheart telling them to follow him. “So that means Icywind is up here?” asked Hitchclaw disbelievingly. “Does that mean Halfheart is here?” asked Roseheart excitedly. All of a sudden there was a rustling noise. “Hitch? Rose? Is that you?” asked a voice. All of a sudden a bundle of white fur leaped out of the shadows and onto Hitchclaw and Roseheart. “It really is you!” purred Halfheart letting her friends up. “Our names aren’t Rose and Hitch anymore. It’s Roseheart and Hitchclaw. We’re daylight warriors of Star Tribe.” purred Roseheart proudly. “That’s great!” exclaimed Halfheart before noticing Tigerheart. Halfheart dipped her head in greeting.
As Roseheart and Hitchclaw chatted with Halfheart, Tigerheart wandered around Sky Tribe’s territory, even though he was still angry at Sky Tribe for lying to him about his parents, Tigerheart was happy to see Spottedsong. “Greetings Tigerheart.” meowed the she-cat awkwardly. “Why aren’t you training with the other cats for the battle?” Tigerheart looked at her in confusion, but then it hit him, he was supposed to train with Greenpoppy, Leopardpath, Summerair, and Icefire! “I totally forgot!” exclaimed Tigerheart. “It’s alright. Oh and congratulations on becoming a full healing cat of Star Tribe.” purred Spottedsong. The tabby dipped his head in thanks. “Actually, I bumped into Roseheart and Hitchclaw; they’re in Sky Tribe and chatting with Halfheart.” explained Tigerheart. “What?” growled Spottedsong. “They were never meant to see Halfheart until they have to go to Sky Tribe themselves! We must stop them!” “B-b-b-but why?” stammered Tigerheart. Spottedsong sighed. “Look, if we don’t stop them in time, Roseheart and Hitchclaw might want to ‘take’ their own lives to come up here.” “But why would any cat do that?” asked Tigerheart. “You see,” started Spottedsong. “You know what? It’s too complicated for you to understand. Let’s go.” Tigerheart silently followed as they heard the voices of laughter. “Halfheart!” growled Spottedsong. Halfheart turned her green and blue gaze on Spottedsong. “Get out of here. Now.” Halfheart silently obeyed, as if she understood what she had done wrong already. “Bye Halfheart!” called Roseheart. “See you soon.” “Hello Roseheart, hello Hitchclaw.” greeted Spottedsong warmly. “Do you know anything about Halfheart’s past? Anything about Blood Tribe and where their dead ancestors go?” Tigerheart had almost forgotten about that! “Yes.” Tigerheart chimed in. “Do you know anything about Soul Tribe and the Death Ring?” Hitchclaw’s fur started to bristle. “Why do you need to know?” spat Hitchclaw defensively. Spottedsong sighed in irritation. “We need it to save the destruction of the five tribes.” Roseheart looked at the she-cat curiously. “You smell of Star Tribe.” she exclaimed. “Yes that’s right. I’m Duskpelt’s mother.” explained Spottedsong losing her patients. “Now can you tell us about Blood Tribe please?” “Fine. Soul Tribe is the place where dead cats go and Death Ring is something like a protective barrier; it keeps the dead Blood Tribe warriors from getting out since they want to spread fear everywhere they go.” finished Hitchclaw. Spottedsong thought for a moment in silence. “Thank you for telling me this. Now I know who the Evils are. They are dead Blood Tribe warrior trying to bring war!” exclaimed Spottedsong. “Thank you for your help but now I must tell the other four cats. Goodbye Tigerheart see you soon.”
Dusttail stretched his aching legs as he sniffed the air. Tigerheart and Swiftfoot had just entered camp. “Duskfur!” hissed Dusttail into his brother’s ear. “Duskfur!” Duskfur sat up and shook his pelt. “What?” he snapped. “Tigerheart is back from The River of our Ancestors.” explained Dusttail. “I think it’s time we told him.” “What?!” spat Duskfur. “Are you mouse-brained?! I’m pretty sure Tigerheart was just made a full healing cat! We don’t spoil his good times.” “Well we’ll have to tell him eventually and what better is to do it then now.” hissed Dusttail racing out of the den. Duskfur reluctantly followed. Dusttail was actually kind of nervous to talk to Tigerheart; the three friends haven’t spoken to each other in moons! “H-h-h-h-hey Tigerheart.” stammered Dusttail. “Oh hey Duskfur and Dusttail. Guess what? I’m a full healing cat now!” greeted Tigerheart awkwardly. “That’s great.” exclaimed Dusttail. “Look, Tigerheart, we have to talk.” interrupted Duskfur. “About what?” asked Tigerheart as the three friends trotted out of camp. “A couple seasons ago, Duskfur had a dream.” started Dusttail. “Brightlight came to me in the dream. There was a half moon. Brightlight told me to think of something about the half moon. I said it reminded me of Halfmoon, our deputy. Then she told me to look closer at the moon. And what I saw beside I thought I’d never see, it was you, Tigerheart.” finished Duskfur. Dusttail looked at Tigerheart who was staring at them in horror. “S-s-s-so you mean Halfmoon is my father?” stammered Tigerheart disbelievingly. “Yes. Brightlight even told me.” meowed Duskfur softly. “And you guys never told?!” he shrieked. “How could you? I thought we were friends!” “We are your friends!” protested Dusttail surprised by Tigerheart’s rage. “Then why didn’t you tell me after you had the dream?” Tigerheart spat. “Because you were already miserable!” hissed Duskfur. “And we are your friends Tigerheart. Maybe we should work together to find out who your mother is.” Tigerheart shook his head. “This is too much.” he growled. “You can figure it out yourselves I don’t care!” Dusttail watched in shock as Tigerheart ran off. “I told you he wasn’t ready.” sighed Duskfur. “Come on let’s go.” “But I thought he would be.” whispered Dusttail. “Now what?” hissed Dusttail. “We told Tigerheart but that wasn’t the reaction we were looking for.” “I don’t know.” replied Duskfur with a sigh. “Hi Dusttail, hi Duskfur.” greeted a voice from behind. “Why hello there Moonshift. Can we help you with something?” greeted Dusttail. “Yes; I was wondering, since tonight before Peace Night, Sky of the Night is going to make Starflight, Meteorflare, and I warriors, I thought that I could hunt with Weatherstorm before my ceremony?” asked Moonshift a bit embarrassed to be telling someone that he liked the young she-cat a lot. Dusttail sighed, he knew that his apprentice wouldn’t like to contribute but this was Moonshift’s last night as an apprentice. “Of course you can. I’ll go get her.” Dusttail trotted off towards the elder’s den; maybe Weatherstorm was inside there. Even though it had almost been three moons since Icywind’s death, Weatherstorm was hit the hardest by her brother’s lose. Dusttail looked inside the elders den; no Weatherstorm. “Have you seen Weatherstorm, Shinningnight?” asked Dusttail. Shinningnight shook her head. “I haven’t seen her ever since Icywind’s death.” exclaimed Skypelt. “Do you think she’s still out in the forest?” Dusttail had a sickening feeling that she would be so he raced off without a moment’s hesitation.
Dusttail yowled the young apprentice’s name. “Weatherstorm!” But there was no reply. Dusttail had only been searching for a heartbeat but he was already worried; where could she be? “Dusttail?” rasped a voice. “Weatherstorm?” meowed Dusttail in relief. “Where have you…” Before him lay a pile of bones. Weatherstorm was so skinny and she looked as frail as an elder. “What happened?” whispered Dusttail. “I sat here for the past two moons. That’s what happened.” “Why didn’t you come back to camp and sit vigil for him?” asked Dusttail. “Don’t you get it Dusttail, I can’t live without my brother.” she whispered walking up to scarlet red berries on a bush. Deathberries. “W-w-w-what do you mean?” meowed Dusttail his voice quavering. Weatherstorm took one of the berries off the bush with her claw. “I can’t go on without my brother by my side.” whispered Weatherstorm. “Weatherstorm no.” hissed a voice behind Dusttail; it was Duskfur and he had a terrified look in his eye. “You have so much to live for. Don’t you want to be a warrior?” “How can I be a warrior without Icywind by my side?” wailed Weatherstorm slumping on the ground with the deathberry by her side. “Come on Weatherstorm you can’t do this.” pleaded Dusttail. “Your brother wouldn’t want this to happen to you.” whispered Duskfur. Dusttail was surprised by a tiny note of affection in his voice. Weatherstorm had seemed to notice it too. “I know but I need my brother. He was always there for me.” explained Weatherstorm. “But think of everyone in Star Tribe. What would they do if they found out? What would your parents think?” hissed Dusttail. Weatherstorm looked at them blankly. “Please Weatherstorm.” pleaded Duskfur. “Your tribe needs you.” Weatherstorm let out a silent wail of despair. “What has Star Tribe ever done to help me?” she whispered. “How can you say that Weatherstorm?!” spat Dusttail furiously. “Star Tribe has been hunting for your mother to keep you alive! They have been fighting for you! They kept you safe! They made you an apprentice and I’m your mentor! So how could you say something like that?!” Duskfur silenced him. “What Dusttail is trying to say is, don’t look at everything negatively; look at life as positive. I think being a warrior is much better than being a kittypet right?”asked Duskfur. “Of course.” answered Weatherstorm in a stronger voice. “Exactly!”yowled Duskfur. “Living in a tribe is the best thing you could ever wish for so why not embrace it?!” “You know what? You’re right.” meowed Weatherstorm as she squished the berry beneath her paw. “I’ll come with her to clean it off while you go tell Swiftfoot and Sky of the Night.” whispered Duskfur rushing off with Weatherstorm to the river.
Weatherstorm walked slowly behind Duskfur after she had washed her paws in the river. Weatherstorm was still weak since she hadn’t eaten for two moons. Duskfur slowed down and let her lean on his side. “You ok?” whispered Duskfur. The apprentice looked up with dull eyes. “Sure.” she mumbled. She’s still in shock, thought Duskfur as he saw Tigerheart and Sky of the Night waiting for them at the entrance. “She looks awful.” whispered Sky of the Night. “Dusttail told Tigerheart and I what happened; he’s telling Snowpetal and Wintersky right now so I’m going to get Asteroidleap and Fireeclipse to guard the entrance so Snowpetal and Wintersky don’t disturb Weatherstorm or Tigerheart.” “Bring her into the den.” ordered Tigerheart as Sky of the Night raced off. “Where’s Swiftfoot?” asked Duskfur. “She’s out looking for herbs.” explained Tigerheart. “You can stay if you like Duskfur; she’ll need company.” Duskfur nodded his head. “That means you’ll have to stay with her till I get back from Peace Night though.” Tigerheart pointed out. “Of course.” meowed Duskfur. The brown tom would’ve loved to go to Peace Night. “Hmm.” meowed Tigerheart examining the apprentice. “I brought her some kill.” whispered Sky of the Night stepping in the den as Asteroidleap and Fireeclipse took their places. She gently placed a giant, plump rabbit next to the weak apprentice. “Eat up while I go get some herbs.” instructed Tigerheart looking through the pile. “Once you’re finished eating the rabbit, eat these herbs.” ordered Tigerheart dropping them beside the apprentice. “Is she going to be ok?” asked Sky of the Night in a hushed voice.” “She’ll be fine; she’s just in a state of shock for now so she’ll have to stay here for a few moons before she can go back to apprentice duty.” explained Tigerheart. “What did you give her?” asked Duskfur. “I gave her thyme, dandelion leaves, and poppy seeds but that’s all I can do till Swiftfoot’s back.” replied Tigerheart. “But you might want to get some rest.” meowed Tigerheart to Duskfur. “I sent your brother to sleep too.” Duskfur reluctantly agreed and headed for the warriors den as he pushed past Asteroidleap and Fireeclipse. “Where’s Weatherstorm?” asked Moonshift racing towards Duskfur. “She’s in the healing den right now. She’s had a rough day and Tigerheart doesn’t want anyone disturbing her.” explained Duskfur padding over to the den where Dusttail was already snoring. “Cut it out!!” hissed Midnightshadow. Duskfur curled into his nest and fell asleep.
Swiftfoot quickly examined Weatherstorm as she slept. “And what herbs did you give her?” she asked. “I gave her thyme and dandelion leaves to calm her down, and poppy seeds to help her sleep.” explained Tigerheart as he put some thyme and poppy seeds in a bundle. “Looks like I’ll have to skip another Peace Night.” she sighed. “I’m getting Duskfur to stay behind; he’ll be looking after Weatherstorm.” Tigerheart explained quickly picking up the bundle of herbs. “Thank you Tigerheart. Where are you going with those?” commented Swiftfoot. “I’m going to go see how the effects of Weatherstorm’s actions have taken on Wintersky and Snowpetal.” mumbled Tigerheart. “Be very calm with Snowpetal!” Swiftfoot cried after the tom. Tigerheart sighed as he padded into the to-be-mothers den. Snowpetal was lying in her nest; staring blankly at the stone wall behind her. Tigerheart flicked his tail in greeting. “Here,” he meowed softly. “Eat these; they’ll help you strengthen.” Tigerheart waited for the she-cat to yell at him but she just took them and very slowly started to gulp them down. Tigerheart slowly retreated out of the den just as Sky of the Night called a meeting. “Fellow tribe mates,” started Sky of the Night. “Tonight, before Peace Night, we have a few new warriors to welcome to Star Tribe.”
After the warrior ceremony was over, Sky of the Night was calling out the names of cats chosen to come with her. “Where is Weatherstorm?” interrupted Shinningnight before Sky of the Night could speak.” “Weatherstorm is inside the healing den due to almost starving.” yowled Swiftfoot. “But she will get better; she just needs to stay in the healing den for a few moons.” Mutters of uncertainty were rising amongst them. “Anyway,” cried the black she-cat. “Moonshift, Starflight, Meteorflare, Breezetail, Swiftfoot, Tigerheart, Halfmoon, Sunset, Duskpelt, Sunrise, and Fireeclipse will all come to the gathering tonight. No cat is to speak about Weatherstorm or of how Icywind died. Understand?” prompted Sky of the Night. “Let’s go! Starynight will be in charge till I get back.”
Sky of the Night lead the way to Peace Night as all the cats scattered into the clearing. Tigerheart and Swiftfoot made their way to the other healing cats. “Greetings.” murmured Ivyleaf; her green eyes looking at Tigerheart curiously. “Hello.” replied Tigerheart dipping his head. “Is this the first time we’ve actually talked to one another?” she asked. Tigerheart thought for a moment; he then realized the she-cat was right. “I think so.” muttered Tigerheart as she came closer. “Well then, my name is Ivyleaf.” explained Ivyleaf. “I-I-I-I’m Tigerheart.” stammered Tigerheart. “Hey Tigerheart.” interrupted Sonicboom looking at Ivyleaf. “Excuse us for a moment.” murmured Sonicboom signaling Ivyleaf to follow. Tigerheart watched as the two she-cats talked secretly. All of a sudden Ivyleaf looked at Sonicboom in anger and trotted away. Sonicboom came back to him with a sigh. “What was that all about?” he asked. “Oh nothing.” replied Sonicboom looking after the she-cat as she glared at Sonicboom angrily. All of a sudden Weasle Fur yowled for Peace Night to begin.
Midnightshadow and Cometblaze limped towards the healing den as Tigerheart sat and waited. “What do they want now?” he grumbled. “What can I do for you?” asked Tigerheart as they came over. “Midnightshadow’s leg hasn’t healed yet.” explained Cometblaze. “Bring him into my den so I can examine the wound.” ordered Tigerheart. Midnightshadow plopped himself down with a groan as Cometblaze stood by the entrance. Tigerheart examined it to see that it was perfectly fine; as if he’d been faking. “What are you up to?” growled Tigerheart as Midnightshadow stood up and sat beside Cometblaze; blocking the entrance. “We need to talk.” she meowed calmly. Tigerheart lashed his tail furiously. “We don’t need to talk.” he spat. “B-b-b-but we’re here to tell you who your real parents are! Even if they won’t allow it. We want you to be happy.” stammered Midnightshadow. “I’ll never be happy; not after what I’ve had to experience. Plus, I already know who my father is.” snapped Tigerheart as pain broke into his heart. “What?” hissed Cometblaze. “You do? How?” “It doesn’t matter how I know.” meowed Tigerheart calming down. “I just want you to get out. Now.” Cometblaze and Midnightshadow looked taken aback by Tigerheart. “Now!” spat Tigerheart. “Only come to see me if you are injured.”
“Hey Tigerheart!” greeted Swiftfoot padding in the den. “I was thinking we could go out and look for herbs since we haven’t done that since you were an apprentice…” Swiftfoot looked at Tigerheart sympathetically. “Midnightshadow pretended to be injured didn’t he?” she asked. Tigerheart looked at her in surprise. “I heard them talking about it this morning; I guess they needed to talk to you badly.” meowed Swiftfoot. “They wanted to tell me who my real parents are.” explained Tigerheart. Swiftfoot’s fur started to bristle but she quickly forced them down. “Did they tell you?” she asked. “I didn’t let them. I didn’t want to know who my traitorous mother is.” replied Tigerheart almost snarling. “S-s-so they told you who the father was?” she asked. “No. I already knew.” snapped Tigerheart in annoyance. Swiftfoot sat beside him in silence. “Well, maybe you should rest for a bit.” instructed Swiftfoot. “It is getting dark anyway and you’ve been away all morning.” The tom nodded his head; realizing how tired he actually was.
Tigerheart sprang to his paws as he heard a giant bang! “Are you ok, Icefire? You hit the tree pretty hard!” exclaimed Greenpoppy looking at the warrior with amusement in her green eyes. “I’m fine.” mumbled Icefire in a dazed voice. “You should sit down for a bit.” commanded Shudderpelt. “Why hello Tigerheart!” greeted Heatherbracken. Tigerheart dipped his head in greeting. “There you are!” growled Summerair. “Where have you been? We’ve been training for only two moons and you still haven’t showed up until now! How do you think we can defeat Evils without training?!” “That’s enough, Summerair.” meowed Shudderpelt sternly. “At least he’s here now so he can start training to control his own power.” “But I don’t know what my power is yet!” objected Tigerheart miserably. “Well then at least train with Greenpoppy and Leopardpath to teach you some basic battle techniques. Let’s hope you’ll figure out your power while you train, Tigerheart.” explained Heatherbracken. Tigerheart sighed as he padded over to the two apprentices as they fought each other in a training session. All of a sudden, Greenpoppy disappeared. Leopardpath sniffed the air super hard. “I have her scent.” she whispered to Tigerheart. “But I thought Greenpoppy could never be detected?” asked Tigerheart. “Tigerheart, I have the most powerful nose ever! Of course I can scent her and almost anything that I wish!” Leopardpath shot towards bushes as a mrrow of surprise came from the bush. “Got you!” hissed Leopardpath. “What! That’s unfair!” wailed Greenpoppy. “I’m supposed to never be detected!” “I have the best nose in the world! Of course I can detect you or anything!” meowed Leopardpath. “Whatever.” snorted Greenpoppy.
“Good job everyone!” praised Heatherbracken. “I’ll see you tomorrow night again! And Tigerheart, don’t forget to meet the other cats at The River of our Ancestors.” Tigerheart nodded his head as he closed his eyes.
The stinging smell of ashes hit Duskfur’s nose. He opened his eyes; fire was everywhere! “Fire!” shrieked Duskfur at the top of his lungs. “A fire has burst in camp!” Dusttail, Meteorflare, Asteroidleap, Starflight, and all the other warriors got up immediately. “I’ll warn Sky of the Night.” meowed Halfmoon racing out of the den yowling fire. Duskfur raced into the healing den. “Tigerheart, Swiftfoot! Wake up!” yowled Duskfur. It was still dark outside but Duskfur could make out the outline of the healing cats.” Both healing cats woke up and looked around terrified. “Go get out of camp! Weatherstorm wake up!” shrieked Duskfur as the apprentice didn’t move. Weatherstorm looked up at him with terrified eyes. “Come on! Follow me!” commanded Duskfur. Duskfur ran into the elders den as Skypelt struggled frantically to find her way out of the den as Shinningnight panicked. “Come on Skypelt!” hissed Shinningnight pushing the blind she-cat to her paws. “You go! I’ll find my way out!” yowled Skypelt. “I’m not leaving you!” snapped Shinningnight before she saw Duskfur and Weatherstorm. “Go Shinningnight! We’ve got Skypelt!” commanded Duskfur as the smoke got thicker. Duskfur struggled as the she-cat collapsed again. Weatherstorm helped Skypelt up and lead her out of the den as Cometblaze came to help her mother. Duskfur looked around panting; since the barrier of the camp was made out of boulders, the camps out line hadn’t been burned away but the healing den had started on fire and so had the warriors and apprentice den. What a nightmare, thought Duskfur ready to race out of camp.
Dusttail panted hard as the smoke came into his lungs as he raced down to Rainbow Tribe’s border like everyone else. “Is everyone out?” yowled Sky of the Night. All of a sudden an ear piercing shriek sounded from the camp. “Someone’s still in there!” yowled Wintersky. Dusttail raced back to camp without a moment’s hesitation. “Who’s there!” cried Dusttail as he stepped into the camp. All of a sudden a giant splitting sound from behind him. “Weatherstorm watch out!” shrieked Duskfur as he lunged forward and shoved Weatherstorm out of the way as the tree landed on Duskfur’s hind legs with a huge ear splitting crack. Duskfur shrieked in pain. “Duskfur!” wailed Weatherstorm as the apprentice came to his side. “Weatherstorm! Get back!” screamed Dusttail as a smaller tree landed on the ground beside her. All of a sudden thunder sounded over Dusttail’s head as rain poured down. All of a sudden Sky of the Night, Breezetail, Wintersky, and Swiftfoot raced into camp just as the last flame got put out by the rain. “Dusttail!” yowled Breezetail. “Oh thank Sky Tribe your safe! Where’s Duskfur?” “Where’s Weatherstorm?!” demanded Wintersky in panic. “Father!” wailed Weatherstorm jumping over the small tree. “Weatherstorm!” purred Wintersky wrapping his tail around his daughter. “Thank Sky Tribe your ok.” Swiftfoot gasped in terror as she saw a brown body with its legs underneath a tree. “Is that Duskfur?” meowed Swiftfoot racing up to his unmoving body. “I-I-I saw him risk his life for Weatherstorm.” stammered Dusttail. “Will he live?” wailed Breezetail. “Thankfully, it only hit his back legs so he shouldn’t die but that might take away his abilities to hunt, fight, or even walk.” explained Swiftfoot. Breezetail looked on in silence. “It’s a risk we are willing to take.” growled Dusttail. “Dusttail, go get some stronger warriors to help lift the tree but leave Halfmoon down there.” instructed Sky of the Night. “The rest of you will try and help.” Dusttail raced down to the border. “What’s happening up there?” asked Halfmoon. “There’s no time to explain!” he meowed. “I need Starynight, Risingspirit, Asteroidleap, Fireeclipse, and Moonshift to come with me.” All five cats bolted towards came with Dusttail in the lead. “Help us get the tree off!” instructed Wintersky as they raced in. All ten cats shoved the huge tree as much as they could. “It’s working!” yowled Weatherstorm. “Now kick at the tree with your hind legs!” Dusttail kicked as hard as he could in sync with all the other cats. All of a sudden the tree let out a moan and tumbled to the entrance of the camp, blocking the entrance. “How do we get out now?!” wailed Weatherstorm. Moonshift came to her side but Weatherstorm refused to be comforted by him. “Don’t worry, the tree has a giant crack right in the middle so one piece of it will roll down into the lake so we can get out.” explained Wintersky as he showed everyone the crack. And just as he finished explaining, the tree let out a moan and it split in half, sending the other half rolling through the forest. “Do you think we should get everyone back to camp?” asked Wintersky. “No.” replied Sky of the Night. “It’s too dangerous and too high of a risk to lose another warrior. Tonight we must shelter somewhere else.” “But what about Duskfur?” objected Dusttail. “We’ll drag him gently.” explained Swiftfoot. “But where would we go?” objected Weatherstorm. “I honestly don’t know but we can’t stay in camp tonight.” replied Sky of the Night shaking her head. “Risingspirit, Weatherstorm, Fireeclipse, Wintersky; help me drag him to the Rainbow Tribe border.” ordered Swiftfoot.
Howls of shock sounded as they saw Duskfur being dragged along the ground. “What happened?” asked Duskpelt rushing up to Breezetail. “A-a-a-a-a tree landed on his legs while he saved Weatherstorm from getting crushed.” stammered Breezetail. “Will he survive?” asked Midnightshadow. “Of course he will! If it only hit his legs then he’ll be…fine.” answered Tigerheart. All of a sudden a rustling noise sounded behind them. Halfmoon signaled everyone to get ready to attack. “It’s ok, Sky of the Night.” meowed a voice. “I come in peace.” “Greetings Tail of Cinder.” acknowledged Sky of the Night as the leader stepped out of the bushes along with Goldenheart, Silverfoot, and Redlight. “I saw the smoke, assuming it came from your camp.” explained the leader. “Yes. It came from our camp and now we must find a different place to spend the night.” explained Sky of the Night secretively. “If you wish, you could stay in our camp but that would mean you would still have to hunt in your own territory.” exclaimed Tail of Cinder. The black she-cat eyed the Rainbow Tribe leader suspiciously.
Tigerheart’s ears pricked as he heard nothing but silence; not like a camp should be. Sky of the Night had decided that they would spend the night in Rainbow Tribe’s camp. Tigerheart still didn’t trust Tail of Cinder; especially after the hostile reaction she gave Star Tribe when Star Tribe beat the battle only five seasons ago. His eyes opened in a flash as he heard light paw steps swishing leaves around. Tigerheart sniffed the air; he was in Sky Tribe. All of a sudden the swishing of leaves got louder. Tigerheart jumped into the undergrowth as a she-cat appeared. “Sonicboom!” gasped Tigerheart silently. Before he could jump out and greet his friend, she zoomed away. Tigerheart swiftly and silently followed her into a small clearing where another she-cat was waiting. “Mistypool?” he muttered. “Why does she want to see Mistypool?” “So,” greeted Mistypool. “How are you doing?” “I was doing fine till…” Sonicboom trailed off in thought. Tigerheart listened harder. “You were doing fine till what?” urged Mistypool. “Until Ivyleaf came along during the last Peace Night.” replied Sonicboom. “Bigheart’s apprentice?” repeated Mistypool in surprise. “How Ivyleaf?” What are they talking about, though Tigerheart in frustration. “Well, she came up to Tigerheart and greeted him.” explained Sonicboom. “But it wasn’t like you would usually greet a cat so I asked if I could talk to her alone. B-b-b-but I totally lost it and I made Ivyleaf feel hurt.” wailed Sonicboom. “Sonicboom, this needs to stop.” meowed Mistypool sternly. What is she talking about, thought Tigerheart. “But how?” demanded Sonicboom. “I-I-I-I love Tigerheart even more than I did before.” Tigerheart’s mouth opened in shock. He had always thought of Sonicboom as a friend; but not until she had brought the idea into his mind that he felt weird. Did I always like Sonicboom but hide it in my heart since we can’t be, thought Tigerheart. I need to talk with her. Tigerheart stepped out of his hiding place. “Sonicboom,” he started. “We need to talk. Alone.” Sonicboom looked at him in shock and embarrassment. Mistypool just dipped her head in sympathy and quickly left the clearing. Tigerheart padded over to his friend and awkwardly sat down. “Tigerheart! I…” Sonicboom was cut off by the tabby tom. “So is it true that you like me?” he asked. Sonicboom nodded her head; not looking at him. “Have you always loved me?” he asked. “Yes.” answered Sonicboom in a faint voice. “Ever since I first met you." “Sonicboom, I love you too. I’ve just never known it.” whispered Tigerheart. Sonicboom looked at him. “R-r-r-really?!” she asked. “I’m so glad you understand!” Tigerheart shook his head. He couldn’t let his emotions get to his head. It was against the healing cat code. He had to stay loyal to his tribe; even if it could mean sacrificing a great friend. “Tigerheart…? Are you ok?” asked Sonicboom. Tigerheart stepped back. “I’m sorry Sonicboom.” whispered Tigerheart shaking his head. “W-w-w-what do you mean?” stammered Sonicboom. “We can’t be together.” Sonicboom’s fur started to bristle. “Y-y-you’d rather be alone instead of stay with me?!” she shrieked. “How could you?!” “I-I-I-I’m sorry, Sonicboom but we must stay loyal to our tribes.” muttered Tigerheart. “You’re just throwing my emotions out as if they’re a pile of fox dung! As if they mean nothing to you!” yowled Sonicboom. “I love you Tigerheart! Don’t you love me?” “I do!” protested Tigerheart. “But we are healing cats! We’d be breaking the code! We must stay loyal!” A claw struck his ear. Sonicboom’s eyes were filled with tears as a piece of his ear fell down. “Sonicboom, wait!” yowled Tigerheart blood dripping down his face as the she-cat ran away. “What have I done!? I hurt Sonicboom even more than she hurt me! What have I done!?”
Dusttail woke up in alarm. This wasn’t Star Tribe’s camp! All of a sudden Dusttail remembered that Star Tribe had to abandon their home because of a fire. “Anything to report?” asked Sky of the Night as a patrol came back from Star Tribe’s camp. “Nothing bad.” reported Halfmoon and then in a lower voice he added. “I think we should return to our territory; this could be a way for Rainbow Tribe to take advantage of us if we stay any longer; plus, everyone is fit to head back, except for Duskfur.” Sky of the Night nodded her head. “Get everyone up. We’re leaving.” whispered Sky of the Night. “I’ll go talk to Tail of Cinder.” Dusttail sighed as spotted his brother who had still not woken up from yesterday’s incident. “He’ll be fine, I promise.” whispered Tigerheart as the tabby tom came up to him. Dusttail sighed. “I hope so because I think there is someone who would miss him except for me, and the rest of the tribe.” Tigerheart purred in amusement. “I know who you mean.” he whispered back. “Well, I have to go say good bye to Bigheart and Ivyleaf since we’re leaving. We’ll have to rebuild so much of the camp.” Tigerheart sighed and padded away. Dusttail looked at Tigerheart in surprise, his friend seemed very sad tired but from what? “Well then I guess this is farewell; for now.” Duskfur overheard Tail of Cinder say as all of Star Tribe made their way out of camp. “We are grateful for your service.” replied Sky of the Night signaling for all of Star Tribe to stop moving to let her take the lead.
“Oh my goodness!” exclaimed Risingspirit looking around camp. “What a mess!” “Everyone old enough to hunt and fight please come over here for a tribe meeting.” yowled Sky of the Night. “Now, as you have all noticed, most of the camp is destroyed, luckily, the barrier of the camp is made out of boulders so nothing of it could burn away. Anyway, the healing den, warriors den, and apprentice den has all been destroyed and the nursery. So most cats will have to shelter in the elders den but right now we will start on building the apprentice and healing den.” Every cat nodded their head in agreement. “Star Tribe’s warriors, you go and grab sticks, leaves, anything you can find to make a roof for the apprentice den. The elders and queens will collect and take out all the dead things that have been burned by the fire. Then, the apprentices will work on the healing den along with the healing cats but since the den is half underground, be careful. Let’s get to work.” Yowls of determination rang around camp. Dusttail came back to camp with the gigantic leaves that were bigger than him. “Whoa Dusttail! Those are huge! Where did you find them?” asked Duskpelt. “I found them upwind of our camp.” replied Dusttail dragging the leaves over to the apprentice den. “Those are huge!” exclaimed Midnightshadow as he picked one up. “This’ll cover the roof even faster, plus, they’re very sturdy too!” Dusttail looked around the camp once more; the healing den was completely finished, all they needed to do was collect some herbs; the apprentice den was halfway done and so was the to-be-mothers den. This is cool, he thought; seeing everyone work together.
“Good work everyone!” congratulated Sky of the Night at the end of the day. “The healing den and to-be-mothers den has been finished!” Yowls of satisfaction rang around camp. “Tomorrow we will work on the apprentice and warrior den. But right now, we need a hunting party; Duskpelt, Fireeclipse, Meteorflare, Weatherstorm, and Starynight.” concluded Sky of the Night.
Tigerheart’s heart ached to see Sonicboom again; he wanted to apologize for the way he talked to her in the dream. Tigerheart looked at his ear in the reflection of a puddle; one piece was still missing. “Tigerheart, come on.” meowed Swiftfoot sternly. All of a sudden the healing cat stopped in her tracks. “Have you been meeting Sonicboom?” she asked unexpectedly. “What?” meowed Tigerheart. “No!” “Well, you’ve been acting very secretive lately and you and Sonicboom always touch pelts at Peace Night.” “There is nothing going on between Sonicboom and I!” snapped Tigerheart infuriated. How could his mentor think such a thing?! “Don’t lie to me Tigerheart.” growled Swiftfoot. “You and Sonicboom are very close all the time, even at The River of our Anscestors.” “Why would you think that I would break the healing cat code?” Tigerheart snapped back. “Because the same thing happened to a young apprentice in Star Tribe when her mentor was still alive!” Swiftfoot stopped herself in her tracks. Tigerheart gasped. “Y-y-y-you?” he stammered. Swiftfoot sighed. “Me and my big mouth. Yes it was me.” she whispered. “With who?” asked Tigerheart. All of a sudden the world around him started to spin. Tigerheart looked around. There were pale blue eyes looking at him. “I’ll always love you Swiftfoot. If you ever need me I’ll always be there!” he whispered gently. Tigerheart looked at the warrior closely; it was Blackheart from Rainbow Tribe! No wonder Blackheart had been asking about Swiftfoot when they were on the quest! All of a sudden the vision was gone and Tigerheart was left staring in shock at Swiftfoot. “Y-y-y-you and Blackheart.” he managed to say. “What?” protested Swiftfoot. “How did you know that?” “It doesn’t matter.” meowed Tigerheart shaking his head. All of a sudden something popped in his head. “Swiftheart!” he meowed just loud enough for Swiftfoot to hear. “What do you mean?” asked Swiftfoot in a scared voice. “Blackheart named his daughter after you!” exclaimed Tigerheart bitterly. “Well I’m not going to make the same mistake as you did Swiftfoot, ever. I’m going out to look for herbs.”
Heatherbracken dipped her head in sympathy to everyone. Greenpoppy, Icefire, Leopardpath, Summerair, and Tigerheart all stopped what they were doing and padded over. “Fellow cats,” started Shudderpelt. “The time has come to take out the Evils.” All of the five cats gasped. Was it really time; he thought; are we ready? “As some of you have already experienced, the fires have gotten much bigger and worse but now they will stop for good.” explained Heatherbracken looking at Tigerheart. “You have had enough training and we think you are ready. Even if we do not know what Tigerheart’s power is, he too will be ready for the great battle ahead of us!” Yowls of agreement rang around the forest. This is it, thought Tigerheart, the time has come!
To Be Continued...