Wingpaw: Hey, Icy…
Icy: What's up, Wingpaw?
Wingpaw: Where have you been for the last month and a half?
Flarepaw: Oh, come on, Wingpaw. Don't act surprised. We know she doesn't update very often.
Mistypaw: Come on, we've got more important stuff to do. We can either talk about not updating or we can actually update. Which one do you want?
Wingpaw: The update…
Flarepaw: Then shut up and let Icy get this chapter on the road.
Icy: Thank you, Flarepaw, Mistypaw. Without further ado, here's the next chapter!
"Spottedpaw, I need deathberries!"
Mosspaw shook her head, pulling herself out of her memories. She was standing at the WindClan border, waiting for the patrol to come. Thistleclaw had organized a meet with the WindClan Alliance members, but Thistleclaw wasn't there. He was back at camp putting finishing touches on the repairs from the battle.
These repairs sure are taking a while, Mosspaw couldn't help but think to herself. Do repairs really take this long? Mosspaw shrugged to herself, realizing she couldn't say anything considering that she hadn't actually helped with any of the repairs herself. She kept hunting so the cats doing the repairs would have something to eat at the end of the day.
Thunder boomed in the distance. Mosspaw flicked her ears as raindrops began to fall. She narrowed her eyes to see through the fog. It had already been raining some earlier in the morning, but it had stopped for a while. Now another storm was about to begin.
Another thunderstorm… Great…
A pale gold tabby she-cat appeared, her creamy stripes barely visible in the fog. A white she-cat with a basically tortoiseshell tail and two smaller tortoiseshell she-cats appeared next to her. Mosspaw waited for them to come up to the border before introducing herself.
Dawnstripe, Spottedtail, Applepaw, and Morningpaw, Mosspaw reminded herself of their names. Thistleclaw had done more than just tell her their names; he had set up this patrol for her. He thinks I'm helping him take down the Alliance, but really he's helping me, Mosspaw thought to herself. He's making it easier for me to end his nonsense. How does he not realize it? He's more of a mousebrain than I thought.
Mosspaw shook her head to clear it as the four WindClan she-cats arrived at the border.
"You're not Thistleclaw," Dawnstripe meowed.
"I'm his apprentice, Mosspaw," Mosspaw replied, introducing herself.
"Thistleclaw said he would be meeting us," Spottedtail meowed. "How do we know we can trust you?"
"Thistleclaw is stuck in camp doing repairs, so he sent me on his behalf," Mosspaw lied smoothly. Thistlelcaw had set up the meet, but told her it was up to her to make up the story on his absence. Mosspaw had it more than covered.
"Still, how do we know if we can trust you or not?" Dawnstripe asked.
"Thistleclaw told me WindClan has been low on prey lately," Mosspaw meowed. "I caught some prey and brought it here for you."
Mosspaw turned to look at the pile of mice and voles behind her. She had caught it all near the border. I sure have been doing a lot of hunting lately… If nothing else, I've become quite the good hunter I guess…
"You brought us prey?" Spottedtail exclaimed.
"We can't accept this," Dawnstripe meowed. "Heatherstar would never…"
"You don't have to take it back," Mosspaw meowed. "I brought this prey for you four. Eat it here and now. No one will notice if you have one extra meal."
"I don't know…" Spottedtail was more than suspicious.
"Why have you done this?" Dawnstripe asked.
"Members of the Alliance should always help each other," Mosspaw meowed. "I brought this as a gift. Eat the fresh-kill. Stay healthy so we can have many more moons of working together for the sake of the Clans," Mosspaw added.
"I still don't think…" Spottedtail began, but Dawnstripe interrupted her.
"You've brought us fresh-kill. That is more than enough sign that we can trust you, Mosspaw," Dawnstripe meowed. "You are Thistleclaw's apprentice, right? I'm sure you'll be a warrior in no time. Thank you for bringing us this prey. Spottedtail, Applepaw, Morningpaw, let's dig in."
Mosspaw curled her tail around her paws and sat still as each of the four WindClan Alliance members picked a piece of prey to eat. Dawnstripe and Applepaw chose a couple mice while Spottedtail and Morningpaw got a couple voles.
"Aren't you going to eat some?" Dawnstripe asked.
Mosspaw shook her head. "It's all for you. I'm not hungry. I ate before I left camp," Mosspaw lied.
Dawnstripe shrugged. "More for us."
You're so hungry you can't even see straight, Mosspaw wanted to retort. She could clearly see outlines of some of the gold tabby's bones. WindClan was obviously starving, which is exactly why Mosspaw had brought some of them prey.
The excuse fit perfectly. The four WindClan Alliance members had completely fallen for her plan.
Dawnstripe and Applepaw had completely finished their mice while Spottedtail and Morningpaw were taking their last few bites of their voles. Applepaw was the first one to be victim. She began coughing.
"Applepaw? Applepaw, are you okay?" Dawnstripe asked. Applepaw continued to cough. Dawnstripe opened her jaws to ask what was wrong, but she started coughing too. As her own coughing fit worsened, Applepaw fell over onto her side, gasping for air.
"Dawnstripe? Applepaw? What's wrong?" Spottedtail asked. She tried to run over to them, but soon she started coughing too. Morningpaw did the same.
Mosspaw stayed back and simply watched them as they all began to panic.
"Moss…paw?" Dawnstripe asked between coughs. "What's…happen…ing?"
Mosspaw lifted a paw and began washing it, ignoring Spottedtail and Morningpaw begging her for help. Applepaw took her last breath. Dawnstripe's panic only increased as she realized Applepaw was dead.
"What have… you done?" Spottedtail asked between coughs.
"What you were too stupid to notice," Mosspaw replied. She flashed back to earlier that morning.
"Spottedpaw, I need deathberries!" Mosspaw meowed.
"Why?" Spottedpaw exclaimed.
"It's all part of my plan to end the Alliance," Mosspaw meowed.
"By killing the members?" Spottedpaw asked. "Are you sure that's…"
"How else am I going to make sure they're not going to take over after Thistleclaw is gone? The Alliance cannot exist at all," Mosspaw added.
Spottedpaw sighed. "We don't have any, but I'll tell you where to get them…"
The flashback moved forward. Mosspaw had collected her deathberries and her prey. She carefully opened the vole's stomach with her claws to give just enough room to slide a deathberry in. Then she carefully closed it back up. After making sure it would stay, she gave it an approving nod and moved on to doing to the rest to the rest of the prey she had caught.
A loud boom brought Mosspaw back to her senses and out of her flashback. Thunder was booming more often now.
Dawnstripe fell over and took her last breath. Spottedtail tried to gasp in shock, but it took too much effort. Spottedtail fell over and received the same fate as Dawnstripe and Applepaw. Morningpaw quickly met the same fate.
Mosspaw sighed in relief when it was all over. The four WindClan Alliance members were dead. The Alliance was over. Now Thistleclaw was all that remained.
First things first, of course, I've got to clean this mess up… Mosspaw reminded herself. She couldn't just leave four dead WindClan she-cats at the border.
The rain suddenly started falling down harder. Thunder boomed again. Lightning struck off in the distance. Mosspaw had to narrow her eyes to see. She scooped up the bones from the fresh-kill and pushed them into the river, but only after making sure there was nothing left of the tiny red berries she had put in the fresh-kill. She didn't want the water to become contaminated. No one else needed to die, just the four cats that did. She watched as the bones floated down the stream. The pounding rain kept them moving. Their existence was not going to be a problem.
Mosspaw turned back to the four dead bodies. Allowing the rain to block out her scent, she jumped over the border into WindClan territory. She opened her jaws and grabbed Dawnstripe's body by the scruff. She pulled it deeper into the territory, just far enough away from the border that it wouldn't be suspicious. She did the same with the other three bodies. Mosspaw was worried about the openness of WindClan territory, but between the fog and the pounding rain it wasn't a problem. The WindClan cats, all starving as they were, weren't dumb enough to be out in this storm. They weren't as dumb as Mosspaw was.
Mosspaw ran back to the border and happily leaped over. She sighed in relief when she was back on the ThunderClan side. She was done cleaning up and now it was time to go back to camp and act like nothing had happened.
I should probably catch some more prey first, though… Mosspaw thought to herself, remembering her excuse to get out of camp was hunting for everyone working on the repairs.
Mosspaw shook her head to clear it as the rain continued pounding down against her fur. Her pelt was soaked from the storm. A cold leaf-bare gust of wind sent a chill down her spine. She wondered whether she should hurry up and get back to camp or not. Surely they would understand if she couldn't find any prey? It was leaf-bare after all and prey was scarce…
Mosspaw lowered her head and sighed. The Clan recognized her hunting abilities. Knowing how long she had been out for, they would expect her to have prey. Mosspaw admitted that she needed to stay out longer and catch at least a couple more pieces of prey. Pushing the storm and cold winds aside, Mosspaw slowly padded into the thick of the forest and began hunting for more prey.
Mosspaw dropped a couple mice onto the fresh-kill pile and sighed when she did. She was extremely tired and wanted nothing more than to go to her nest and sleep for the rest of the day. She wasn't even sure what time it was, thanks to clouds blocking her view of the sun, but she didn't even care. The sooner she got to her nest the better.
"Mosspaw!" Mosspaw slowly lifted her head from the fresh-kill pile to see Thistleclaw running over to her.
"Mosspaw, you're soaked!" Thistleclaw exclaimed.
"It is raining…" Mosspaw retorted.
"You've been hunting this long out in that storm?" Thistleclaw asked loud enough for others to hear them. A few of the warriors were still working on the repairs, but most of the cats had gone into their dens to avoid the rain.
"I took care of business," Mosspaw replied. "It's done."
Thistleclaw nodded in approval. "Good, now go get some rest. You deserve it." Softer, so no one else could hear, he added, "Thank you."
"I'm done," Mosspaw whispered back. "The Alliance is over, and so is me working with you."
"You know I'm still your mentor, right?" Thistleclaw asked. "We have the same goals, to make you a warrior and to make ThunderClan a great Clan."
"Then we can work together in training sessions and patrols, but that's it," Mosspaw meowed. Thistleclaw tried to keep the conversation going, but Mosspaw padded away from him and into the apprentices' den. She barely got to her nest before falling over from exhaustion. She didn't shake her pelt to get it dry. She barely had enough energy to curl up in her nest and lay her head down on her paw before falling asleep.
Icy: Thus we reach the end of the chapter.
Wingpaw: Well Mosspaw has certainly become quite the murderer, hasn't she?
Flarepaw: The Alliance is over. It's going to take four more chapters for her to kill Thistleclaw…?
Icy: Originally, it was going to be a bunch of boring anticipation, but don't worry, I've got a better plan now on how all of this is going to play out. This chapter Mosspaw did what she needed to. She finished off the Alliance, but at what cost? She was out in a heck of a thunderstorm and it's leaf-bare, so it's really cold outside. Mosspaw has nothing but dark days ahead, but that's all I'm saying for now.
Wingpaw: Aww… Icy, tell us more!
Icy: Nope. That's all you get for now. Just look forward to the next chapter.
Icy: See you next time!
~Icy and the crew