she had been released from the medicine cat's den all but three days, had completed a training session with her mentor, and now she stood before the mossy clearing - a place of relaxation - with the full intention of enjoying her day. it was a rare chance that the five siblings could ever get enough time to just be together, but for the first time in a while they had a chance to settle down and reconnect. with a deep smile, the petite white she-cat could feel her paws press into a gentle layer of moss and snow, her eyes casting up to the gentle snowfall that dropped around her. here, with her family, she felt more at home and knew she could face the world.
they had also known she had, had an accident, to what extent it was, they did not know. she had refrained from talking about it - the episode of the giant newt and the paws grabbing her from the earth still haunted her dreams at night, but for the most part, she was content to keep going. licking her lips, the white she-cat recalled how stoatstar had given them the clear if jasminepetal and hemlockbite kept a firm eye on them. with knotpaw and dawnpaw quietly told where to meet she had slipped through the tunnel of camp to the territory with ease. standing in the mossy clearing, she turned her head in search of her fellow white siblings, and the oddball orange one.
she always thought it funny that dawnpaw was more orange than any of them, and she had quickly defended those who would so much as joke about him, that they were jealous of dawnpaw being kissed by the sun. a bright smile crawled across her face as she lifted onto her hind legs, batting at the snowflakes that fell around her, eyes now fixed on the snowflakes, but her ears on the surrounding area. turning, she spotted one of her siblings and waved them over with her fluffy white tail. "you made it!" she meowed happily, her usual stutter with her mentor no longer there.
- we're walking the wire, so look out down below -
The bulky white tom found a spring in his step this morning. Jasminepetal and himself were taking their younger siblings out for a day of fun and bonding for what felt like the first time in moons. It was easier to visit and play when they were all younger and less busy. Now that he was a warrior, he had extra responsibilities. Now that the kits were apprentices their time consisted of training or taking care of their own newfound responsibilities. Such was the way of clan life, though. It was hard work to keep the clan strong and comfortable. But rewarding all the same, the sense of pride Hemlockbite felt in taking care of his clanmates was something that couldn't be replicated anywhere else. Though, he longed for more time with his loved ones, he was thankful they found time to be together every so often.
It was a short trek from the camp to their chosen meeting place and snow was beginning to fall gently over the clearing as Hemlockbite stepped paw out of the trees. As he padded over the soft layer of snow he could still feel the spongey texture of the moss below it. He began to bounce a bit rhythmically along with it as he made his way toward a smaller, prettier version of himself. Blizzardpaw was waiting, the first one to arrive. It was nice to see her feeling better, finally. He was worried for her health, just as the rest of the siblings were. When one of them was hurt, they all hurt. They were a tight bunch, this family of cats. He was lucky to have them all.
Blizzardpaw waved her tail in greeting and he lifted his own in response. "Of course I made it, mouse-brain," he chuckled good naturedly. "I wouldn't miss this for all the stars in StarClan." As he approached her he reached in to touch noses with his dear sister. "I'm sure the others will be along before we know it. As long as Knotpaw isn't hiding away from the cold in the apprentices' den," he teased with a warm smile.
"Blizzardpaw! You're out!" the eager yowl could only announce Dawnpaw's arrival. He bundled into her and gave her ear an affectionate lick. It had certainly been a while since he got to hang out with his sister. Three days ago, she had mysteriously fallen ill and the medicine cats had insisted on keeping the loud and obnoxious Dawnpaw away from their patient. Whatever happened, Dawnpaw knew little and asked little.
Dawnpaw did not break his smile or his positive attitude, but inside he was so glad to see his family today. The weight of recent events held his heart in a heavy state, and the sight of his loved ones brought both comfort and worry. He feared losing them like Pantherleap and Berrybloom. Blizzardpaw's recent illness scared him to the bone.
The rest of his family looked just gorgeous in the light snowfall. White cats with blue eyes, they matched the terrain so naturally Dawnpaw began to give himself a self-conscious groom. He used to look just like the rest of them, but for some reason when he started his apprenticeship orange markings began to develop in his fur.
"I wonder if Knotpaw decided we're not worth the cold," he joked as he nuzzled Hemlockbite's shoulder. His older siblings had been his idols since day one. They had taken such good care of the sickly Dawnpaw as a kit, and he would never forget that. He began to join Blizzardpaw in batting at the snowflakes. Snow was still a novelty to him.
Nestled in the warmth of the warrior’s den, the young molly began to stir. Her sleep had been sporadic at best, but this time it was not stemming from worrying about her sister or her clan, but from eagerness regarding the day to come. Her bicolored oculars slowly opened, blinking away any drowsiness that lingered as they began to search her surroundings for the familiar pelt of her brother. Mousedung! How did he get up before her again? Her small jowls parted in a silent yawn and she pushed her petite frame onto her paws. Carefully, she picked her way across the den, wary not to tread upon any tails that may have wandered from their nests. She emerged into the camp and paused only for a moment as her gaze darted about the clearing, but still no signs of her kin. No way they all beat her! Without a second thought she bound off in the direction of a camp exit and headed for the mossy clearing.
The snow was falling and that alone was enough to cause a wide smile to plaster itself upon her maw. This was the one time of year that she was able to camouflage herself while out in the territory, plus it was pretty to look at. Her steady pace allowed her to move quickly across the territory, leaving small prints in the fresh snow with her pale pink pads as she went. She could hear the soft murmuring of conversation ahead and a spark of delight danced across her oversized features. The pure alabaster femme rounded a small pile of rocks as she slipped into the clearing. “Hey, at least I’m not last!” She called, her tone bubbling with playful laughter. She had a knack for being late to things, whether it be from oversleeping or getting tangled up in her own daydreams.
She brushed up along Hemlockbite in greeting before rasping her tongue across Dawnpaw’s cheek. “Mornin’ boys.” She paused as her focus shifted to Blizzardpaw. Her jade and cerulean eyes inspected the young apprentice before she stepped forward to press her nose with her sister. “Glad to see you out and about, little one.” Her voice was hushed and her smile was soft as she did her best to conceal any concerns she still had for her sister. She had lost one to illness and she certainly did not want that to happen again.
[attr="class","banditttttttt2"]As they all knew, Knotpaw despised the cold. Were it possible for him to bundle himself in pelts of squirrel and rabbit to keep himself warm without being ridiculed, he might have considered it. His nest was lined with extra moss and feathers along the bottom, doing their best to insulate against the cold ground - something he was increasingly thankful for this morning as he curled himself tighter into a ball. He'd heard Dawnpaw disappear from the den and the thought of having to leave his warm nest pained his heart. He'd dozed off again when the realization of what day it was shot him up to his paws, pelt directed every which way thanks to his restless sleeping habits.
The apprentice darted from the den and from camp, his footfalls anything but quiet as he crashed through the undergrowth, tenderly prancing in through the snow. He heard their voices just up ahead and skidded sharply to a hault just as he reached the clearing. The stop was anything but graceful as he hit a small patch of ice and tumbled right for Dawnpaw, letting out a yelp of surprise when he landed into a small drift of snow that covered him up to his chest. Looking from his eldest brother and sister, to Dawnpaw, then finally to Blizzardpaw, he piped up quickly, "I'm here, I'm here!" Though he gingerly rose to his paws and shook the snow that clumped around his legs off, shivering as he went. "Couldn't we choose somewhere warmer to spend time together, though?" He grumbled, not caring to lower his volume.
But all the same, he padded closer to his siblings and ran himself against each of them in greeting, pausing to give Blizzardpaw a swift nudge against her cheek too. "I'm glad you're feeling better, Mousebrain." He said affectionately, teasing her slightly all the same.
she never would admit it, but the time spent with her brothers and sister always seemed to calm her. her whiskers twitched happily, and the usual shy and timid she-cat purred happily. it was rare that they all got to be together, and she was sure once they would all be warriors and perhaps then they would be together more. her brother was commenting on knotpaw's distaste for the cold and blizzardpaw giggled softly, her vibrant blue eyes flicking to where the others should be coming. "you think he'd be use to it by now." she meowed softly, but never letting her voice raise above the soft tone.
she was barreled into almost immediately by her other brother, the orange and white tom. a smile burst into her face as she returned the lick affectionately and purred loudly. almost louder then she had when hemlockbite had showed up. "i am!" she meowed in a soft excited tone. when her brother added that they wondered if knotpaw would emerge from the den, she giggled again. of course she couldnt help but feel overwhelmed with the affection her family had, but it made her feel safe for the first time in days. the soft voice of her sister made her turn rapidly to stare at jasminepetal. the she-cat smiled brightly at her sister.
"thank you jasminepetal... it's good to be out with you all." she meowed softly and shook her pelt in embarrassment. she was not one to accept the amount of worry she had evoked. but looking from each of her siblings she felt an overwhelming sense of safety. it was than that she heard the loud, but lovely, knotpaw. she smiled gently towards her brother who grumbled about the location and the young she-cat giggled once more softly. she too nudged her brother back with his own nudge and felt content with them all together.
"thanks minnow." she teased back, raising a paw to bat him. turning her eyes to hemlockbite and jasminepetal, she wondered if they would take them to do some more exploring the of the territory or even practice some of their hunting. a soft smile graced her lips as she once more turned to look at each siblings. "i really miss it-it just being us."
♚ a loud yowl and a sudden flash of orange announced the arrival of Dawnpaw. His heart felt full as he watched the littermates greet each other. "easy, now, dawnpaw. We wouldn't want to send her back to flickerfrost so soon," the snowy warrior teased. "although," he added with a glimmer of mischief in his eye, "after spending so much time in the medicine cat den she might need to be whipped back into shape.." he winked at the oddball pair and leaned into dawnpaw's nuzzle lovingly, offering a chuckle at his own echoed comment about their brother.
His reply was cut off by a new arrival and his icey orbs found his littermate, Jasminepetal, slipping into the clearing. Her pure pelt matching his own, though not quite as thick as hemlockbite's and her eyes were mismatched; a rare quality that Hemlockbite admired about her. He purred in acknowledgment as she brushed against him and observed as she greeted their two present younger siblings, allowing her to have her moment with blizzardpaw before mewing, "how are you, jasminepetal? Has stoatstar been keeping you busy, too?"
Suddenly a rustle came from the edge of the clearing and Hemlockbite turned his attention to the unsteady form of Knotpaw emerging. He watched in careful amusement as the young tom tumbled into a patch of snow, and then quickly resurface in an attempt to escape the icy prison he found himself in. With a warm smile Hemlockbite gave his brother a quick forehead lick as he brushed past him. "do you have any better suggestions to meet, Knotpaw?" he quizzed with a sly smile.
Now that everyone was present, hemlockbite glanced from cat to cat. Reminded of how lucky he was to have each of them to call family, he felt a purr rise in his chest. "I have been missing you all, as well," he admitted. "let's enjoy the time we have today, then." he looked up at the sky, filling with light with the rising sun. The territory would be starting to bustle with prey looking for their own breakfast and he felt a soft pang in his belly. He looked in the direction toward the stunning rocks and asked, "anyone hungry for breakfast? I'm interested to see those hunting skills you three have been working so hard on."