The lake was beautiful, he observed as he sat in order to clear his mind. The stars in the sky let their light rain down to the rippling water, blessing it and making it shine. Waves lapped with a peaceful crashing along the shore, and he thought that the night could get no better. Suddenly, his ears flicked back as the faint cracking of leaves underpaw came from behind. He let his fur prickle and his muscles tense as he rose and faced the undergrowth, claws sliding out in preparation to attack. After all, he was close to the WindClan border, and he was upwind.
"Lionblaze? Lionblaze?" Came a whisper. He cursed the voice. Bubbles of anger started to rise in his stomach and he did nothing to swallow the feelings as a hiss escape his jaws. Out from the bushes came a sleek brown tabby she-cat, eyes a frighteningly vibrant blue to the dark landscape. "Please, don't attack me, Lionblaze!" She pleaded and snuck out further.
Lionblaze felt like he was on a very fine string. He could attack her; kill her if he wanted to! What was she, Heathertail, doing on his territory? The she-cat deserved to fall in a pool of her own blood. He still hadn't and never would forgive her for telling about the tunnels, for dragging him into something that took moons to forget about. For making him love her.
"What in StarClan's name are you doing here?" He barked harshly, not even minding to keep his voice down.
Heathertail flinched, but also dared to take a delicate step forward. It was a brave, bold and stupid move. "I just needed to see you, Lionblaze, to explain that I didn't tell about the tunnels-" But before she could finish, Lionblaze had launched off of the ground and pelted towards her, slamming her to the side and pinning her painfully to the ground. His claws dug into her skin and she screeched in pain, writing under the bigger cat's weight, but to no avail.
"You'd come here for something like that? I have every right to kill you on the spot!" He spat. Heathertail yelped and managed to push up on his stomach with her hind legs, which from living on the moor, did a great deal of damage. Lionblaze was pushed off balance and she managed to scratch at his face and twist away, rocketing back through the undergrowth.
Stumbling slightly from the unexpected move, Lionblaze shook his head and yowled into the night, streaking after her and catching up easily on his own, well-known terrain. He could smell her, feel the fear reverberating from her pelt, and he caught a glimpse of her tail, before coming to a sudden halt.
The WindClan border.
"Come back, Heathertail! Let me finish you off!" He howled in rage across the stream. He saw the glint of her eyes, peering cautiously at him through her Clan's own territory.
"Lionblaze! Listen! I didn't tell anyone. I love you. Please…believe me!" She mewled across the water, voice sounding pitiful and desperate.
The words hit him like a hammer. The words 'I love you'. He had seen her with Breezepelt, felt the jealousy in his stomach that he refused to admit was there. He shook his head again, more violently this time. "Don't say that! You lied to me! You told about the tunnels!" He tried to push this torrent of feelings away as they made tears cloud his vision and his muscles go weak.
"Why would I tell, Lionblaze, if I feel this way? If I've felt this way since we first met? How can I convince you I didn't tell anyone? That DarkClan and all our adventures were moments between you and me and no one else? That even after you and Tigerstar and how you attacked Crowfeather that I still wanted to be with you? That nothing can keep us apart?" Her voice cracked as she sobbed. She just wanted him to believe her. She couldn't stand it anymore. Not at all. Not how she loved him and was expected to be with Breezepelt when she was just friends with the tom. She wanted Lionblaze. That was the only thing she ever asked for.
His heart flipping, his mind slowing, he bit his lower lip and cut into the ground with his claws. He wanted to believe her, but…what evidence, proof could he find without knowing for sure? How could he trust these words she said to him? "I…" He started, and was about to finish, when he heard cats running and approaching from either direction. The first thing that came to mind was to run, but he was paralyzed as Onestar appeared with a small patrol around him. They smelled Heathertail's blood and prepared to launch across the border, before Brambleclaw and his own ensemble came stalking through, standing evenly on either side of Lionblaze.
"What happened?" Onestar demanded angrily and harshly. Heathertail cast one last, longing glance towards Lionblaze before limping back to the group.
"I…she…I thought she had crossed the border, but I was wrong…and attacked her without reason." Lionblaze stammered, utterly confused as to why he was protecting her. At the news, Onestar turned to Heathertail with a questioning look. She just lowered her head and licked a wound on her paw.
"Well, make sure they're actually doing something against the code next time, or I will come over there and claw you to shreds!" Onestar forced out awkwardly and turned, starting off with the group following at the flick of his tail. Heathertail got up and followed instinctively, wondering and hoping that her voice had gotten across, that somehow she had convinced him.
"This will be dealt with." Brambleclaw called to their disappearing shapes, before turning to Lionblaze with a fatherly look in his eyes, though both knew the truth of exactly who they were in one another's lives. "Are you hurt?" The deputy asked, not even about to question the events of the night. It was as if he knew already. Knew what she had said to him.
"Not physically." Lionblaze answered simply, and stalked off, wondering if he was angry, sad, or in love all over again with a forbidden she-cat. Brambleclaw hesitated, but finally followed after him.