A Long Short StoryEdit
Firestar rose with a groan. His head swam with the ominous omen and warning that he had received. “Are you alright? You aren’t looking to good, are you sure you don’t want to see Jayfeather?” Sandstorm mewed, worry written across her face.
He shook his head, too shocked to say anything. You would act the sa— ahhh! He sank to the ground in agony, pain lancing through his head. When the pain subsided, he looked up to see Tigerstar sneering down at him with blood on his paws. Sandstorm lay not too far away, unmoving.
“Firestar? Are you alright?” He shook his head as to clear the image of Tigerstar. He stood up slowly, waiting for the pain. “Firestar, you will be going to Jayfeather. Come on.”
Sandstorm, my beloved Sandstorm…
Sandstorm nudged Firestar forward. Stumbling, he came out of his den and looked around. Lionblaze stood beside the den entrance, his tail lashing and a snarl on his face. Dovewing stood not too far away from her former master, pacing. Jayfeather rushed up, wanting to ask Firestar if he was okay. “Sandstorm,” Firestar rasped, “I’ll go with Jayfeather now.” He stepped away from her and had Jayfeather guide him to the den.
“So, you got an omen, woke up, got one again and saw Sandstorm dead and then what?” Jayfeather let his temper run wild. Pacing and grumbling, he thought over what Firestar had said. He had also seen StarClan that night, but was told to wait until he saw his leader.
“Um, Jayfeather,” Lionblaze meowed, cautious, “we don’t know what his second one meant. It could be that Tigerstar has it in for him…”His voice trailed off and he muttered something like ‘or something else’.
“Lionblaze, is there something you want to tell us?” Firestar asked; surprised Lionblaze would act this way.
“I kind of, well, Tigerstar was training me in the Dark Forest for a time. I told him I wouldn’t anymore, but that’s why I would wake up covered with scratches; otherwise I never get injured in battle.” He hissed quickly, as if afraid that Tigerstar himself would come and kill him for telling Firestar. “Ivypool is training also. Jayfeather, Dovewing and I told her to spy, but we… Well, yeah.”
“This…This is interesting news, Lionblaze. If I had known before though, this might have worked to planning a way around the now inevitable.”
“Are we ready, warriors of the Dark Forest?” Tigerstar encouraged. Their answer was a scattered ‘yes’ and so he asked again, “I said, are we READY; you ignorant flea bags!”
This time a roar of “YES!” swept through the onlookers.
“We attack tomorrow, at dawn!” He watched from the tree he was perched on as a roar of agreement met his ears. “Then sharpen your claws my warriors, and prepare for battle!” they dispersed and began training. “I’m coming Firestar, and when I do, you won’t be able to stop me.” Tigerstar hissed. And back in the living world, Firestar blacked out, unable to bear the pain and Tigerstar’s whisper, “I’m coming Firestar, and when I do, you won’t be able to stop me…”
“Firestar, Firestar! Wake up!” Lionblaze nudged his leader with his paw. Firestar stirred and raised his head a fraction.
“Tigerstar is coming. We must–prepare.” Firestar croaked, unable to eliminate the trace of fear in his mew. He wasn’t sure he was strong enough to fight Tigerstar this time.
“Hey, you guys–what happened?” Dovewing skidded to a halt, breathless. “What happened to Firestar?”
“He blacked out and is recovering from it, of course,” growled Jayfeather.
Firestar looked up at Dovewing, “Why were you hurrying over here? I saw that much.”
“I, well, I had a vision from StarClan,” mumbled Dovewing.
“We’ve had a lot of those lately,” hissed Jayfeather, “It must be urgent.”
Dovewing looked angrily at Jayfeather. “I saw a lot of cats fighting, Firestar, I also saw a large brown tabby tom standing in a pool of blood, looking triumphant. A-and,” her voice broke as she looked away, “He was standing over you, Firestar.” She regained her composure and said, “StarClan also said something like this, ‘Moonpool will guide you to your destiny’ or something like that.”
“I knew this day was coming. We and StarClan must battle the cats of the Dark Forest. Lionblaze, gather our strongest warriors together, and you Dovewing, go to the other two clans, RiverClan and WindClan and tell them of this, they must know. For now, I do not trust ShadowClan.” Lionblaze and Dovewing nodded and bounded off. Firestar turned to Jayfeather, Make some bundles of strengthening herbs, will you? We’ll need them.
“No, absolutely not. If you think for one moment I’m going to help Firestar, you’re wrong. I’m not sending any of WindClan, not one. And if you think that I don’t mean–wha..?”
Onestar looked past Dovewing, startled. “RiverClan’s already agreed Onestar; will you pay at least one whisker of…”
“Peace Dovewing. You need not push him further. I have come to settle the matter, for I agree with Firestar entirely.” Dovewing spun around to see a shimmering Tallstar gazing at her with his amber eyes, so full of tenderness.
“No, no, n-n-no, there’s no way you’re going to make me–”
“I will not force you, Onestar, but the Clans of the lake, all of them, are in danger. Firestar needs your assistance, or will you be known as the leader too afraid to challenge evil? It’s your choice.”
“Tallstar, I–fine, Dovewing, tell Firestar that WindClan will assist him.”
“Hurry Dovewing, time grows short.” Whispered Tallstar as his figure faded away. Dovewing bounded out of the camp and back into ThunderClan territory.
“Lionblaze what are you doing out here, and, Jayfeather? What’s this?”
“Firestar told us to come and get you, he was afraid you would be attacked by the traitors in RiverClan and WindClan.” Lionblaze mewed, dazed.
“Ivypool told us of one, at least, in WindClan. He’s our, well, Lionblaze and I’s father’s son, Breezepelt.” Jayfeather spat, hatred dripping off of ‘father’ and ‘Breezepelt’.
“So, he’s your half-brother?” Dovewing questioned.
“Yes,” hissed Jayfeather through clenched teeth. Turning away, the blind medicine cat led them back into camp.
“Let all cats old enough to catch their own prey join here beneath Highledge for a clan meeting,” yowled the deputy, Brambleclaw, “Firestar has received a vision, and so has Jayfeather, showing him that soon we will be called to battle the warriors…” Brambleclaw shook his head sadly, “of the Dark Forest. The warriors he will bring are, Graystripe, Dustpelt, Sandstorm, Brackenfur, Sorreltail, Cloudtail, Millie, Thornclaw, Squirrelflight, Spiderleg, Birchfall, Whitewing, Berrynose, Hazeltail, Mousewhisker, Cinderheart, Lionblaze, Foxleap, Icecloud, Toadstep, Rosepetal, Blossomfall, Bumblestripe, Dovewing, and myself. Jayfeather will come along as well.” He gazed around at the Clan, his eyes picking out the ones coming with Firestar. “Tomorrow at dawn, Firestar will bring every cat listed with him to Moonpool.” Brambleclaw bounded off the ledge and went to the fresh-kill pile.
“Dovewing, why aren’t I coming too, I’m a loyal warrior, right?” Ivypool inquired of her sister.
“I have no idea,” replied Dovewing.
Dawn came, and the warriors of ThunderClan woke to an unhindered sun. Trotting out of the den, Lionblaze saw Brambleclaw and Firestar at the camp entrance, making sure everyone was ready. “We will go to the Island first,” Firestar was telling the warriors, “Mistystar and Onestar will meet us there. Let’s go.” He bounded out of the camp with the large mass of warriors behind him. StarClan, please give him strength, thought Lionblaze as he saw his leader slow to a limping trot.
Reaching the Island, Firestar saw Onestar and Mistystar already waiting with their Clans. He jumped up onto the tree where leaders usually sit and announced, “Warriors of the Clans, today we must rid ourselves of the evil building. The Dark Forest has gained power, and so we, along with StarClan, must join together in this battle for freedom.” Pausing, he turned his head towards the rustling sound coming from the brush.
“Leafstar! Why have you come?” Sandstorm mewed excitedly.
“Not just I, SkyClan came, and we have come because StarClan wished us here,” she paused to look up at Firestar, “We came to help rid ourselves of this evil around us.”
“Well, we must continue, now that SkyClan here has joined us. As I was saying, we will head for Moonpool, where we will receive further instructions.” With that, Firestar led his Clan off of the Island and towards Moonpool.
Upon reaching their destination, Firestar spotted Bluestar, Crookedstar, Tallstar, and Skywatcher sitting there, waiting. Seeing Firestar, Bluestar rose and padded towards him. “Here the leaders of the Clans must drink of the pool, and we will create a path for the warriors to follow.” She whispered. He repeated her message to the others and drank from the pool along with the other leaders.
Waking, he noticed everyone with him, seeing this as odd; he started forward, only to see Tigerstar step out of the trees.
“You have come, dear Firestar. I am surprised these cats came on the word off of your tongue.” He sneered and waited for a reply; and to his surprise, it came from Onestar.
“It seems to me, and I hope the other leaders as well, that his word was true. I believe that you, Tigerclaw must leave now or face the wrath of StarClan.”
Stung by what the WindClan leader had said, Tigerstar retorted, “Tigerclaw, am I? Well, see who came to fight on whose side. Come out Breezepelt, Come meet your family.” Sneering, Tigerstar turned away and let Breezepelt pass.
“Breezepelt, no! Don’t do this!” Cried Crowfeather, appalled by what his son had done.
“Sorry,” chuckled Breezepelt. Then, his eyes alight with malice, he said, “Sorry, Crowfood. It’s too late. In fact, three kits too late.”
“No! Lionblaze, he’s dishonoring us!” Hissed a frantic Jayfeather.
“It is time for this to be finished Tigerstar, this battle one must win,” Firestar ended the argument and turned the warriors minds to the battle, “For Loyalty, Bravery, and StarClan!” With his ringing yowl, the ThunderClan leader leapt into the enemy’s midst.
In the swirling tide of fighting warriors, Lionblaze spotted a clear circle, stained with blood, where Tigerstar and Firestar fought. He watched as Tigerstar bit down on Firestar’s scruff and hurl him into a dark tree. And as his weakened leader struggled to his feet, he saw the swipe of Tigerstar’s claws, sealing Firestar’s fate.
“No, you can’t!” he howled as he blindly charged towards Firestar’s killer.
“Lionblaze, we meet again. Though you couldn’t kill me the fir–” His words were cut short as Lionblaze bowled him over.
“I didn’t kill you because you were dead, but because you killed Firestar, you deserve to die again.” Tigerstar struggled vainly against Lionblaze’s paw. He managed to slip out from under it, and in the process of flipping onto his belly, Lionblaze’s claws struck the soft flesh and with the same blow that had killed him in life, he died again.
“You… Can’t kill m-me,” he struggled, his blood flowing like a river from him.
“You deserved to die, and so you will.” Lionblaze meowed calmly.
“N-no, I–” The light left his eyes and his head hit the ground with a thud. Tigerstar, killer of Firestar was dead.
Almost as soon as Tigerstars spirit left them, several cats stopped fighting. Dovewing bounded up to Lionblaze’s side, panting. “Sandstorm, Greystripe, and Brambleclaw all saw what happened. Is it true that Firestars d-dead?"
"Yes, Firestar's... Dead." It Still didn't seem right, Firestar being dead. It felt like he should rise back up and continue to lead them, but...
"Do not mourn, Lionblaze. My spirit will always be in the Clans." Firestar padded up to him, stars in his pelt and knowledge burning in his eyes. "But remember this, Near comes a time when the cat will catch his tail, and will look for it again. This Prophecy I give you, to see it fulfilled, Lionblaze. Find Brambleclaw, and tell him, peace, though I am dead, life goes on and the war is won." With that, Firestar faded into the darkness.
"Firestar. My Leader and kin, may StarClan treat you well." Lionblaze turned and bounded off in search for Brambleclaw, but as he watched, a dark mass of fury came at him and pinned him down.
"You! You killed Tigerstar! You are my kin though you shouldn't be, and you will die!" Breezepelt was standing over him, one paw on Lionblazes throat.
Looking around wildly, Lionblaze spotted a dark tabby fighting a cat nearby."Br-brambleclaw! Help me!" Brambleclaw, who heard the cries, turned and watched Breezepelts claws sink into his nephew's neck.
"Too bad your powers don't work here half-brother" Breezepelt sneered.
"But family does!" Brambleclaw lept from the limp body of his previous battle and knocked Breezepelt over. With a quick blow to his muzzle Brambleclaw let him up. "Never touch my nephew again," he looked at Lionblaze, winked, and turned back to Breezepelt, "Or you'll have another thorn in your side to worry about."
As Lionblaze got up, Jayfeather bounded over. "Now what was that all about?" he asked, incredulous.
"Forgive and forget. I fogive Squirrelflight, and you two. Life moves on, and so must I. Jayfeather, patch up Lionblaze will you?" Bramble claw waved his tail and started to bound off.
"Wait! I have a message for you, from Firestar." Lionblaze called after him.
"What is that, Lionblaze?" Brambleclaw asked, turning.
"Firestar wanted to tell you to feel peace though he is dead, life goes on and the war is won."
"Thank you, Fire- Lionblaze. I will lead the clan out of here before the sun rises." He looked up at a distant hill and yowled, "The battle is won, Bluestar, lead us, victorious, back to our home."
"As you wish." Bluestar emerged from the trees and touched noses with Brambleclaw. "Leave, and be happy Brambleclaw." her voice fadded as mist surrounded them and they woke, safe around moonpool.
"Let all those old enough to catch their own prey gather aroung Highledge for a Clan meeting." Bramblestar yowled. He watched as his clan filltered out of their dens and sat below him. "I say these words before StarClan, that the spirits of our warrior ancestors may hear and approve of my choice. The new deputy of ThunderClan is, Lionblaze!" He watched in satisfaction as his mate, Squirrelflight congratulated him, and as the Clan cheered their approval for his choice. It's been twelve moons since the battle. I have led them well. He looked over at his mate, who was getting bigger by the day. Soon I will have kits of my own. Bramblestar smiled to himself, wondering what his sons and daughters names would be.
"Get Jayfeather, and Leafpool. I think I'm kitting!" exclamed a pained Squirrelflight. She watched as her mate raced away, going to get the Medicine Cat and Ex- Medicine Cat. Soon her nephew and sister were at the enterance to the den, breathless.
"I'll go get some willow bark for the pain, maybe some raspberry leaves, too." Leafpool bounded away to get the herbs, and when she cape back, she dropped them near Squirrelflight to chew. As soon as sqirrelflight had lapped up the herbs, her pained face relaxed some, just before a contraction sent a ripple through her belly.