AvatarCat11: I'm finally going to update Book 2 of the Nightfang series! Now I'm gonna update the first chapter. But I don't know about posting up the new chapter sometime soon because FanFiction hasn't been letting me update my stories or even edit them.
Harry: I'm gonna hate this year since the incident of being Slytherin's heir. But it was really...
Ron: (Clamps his hand over his mouth) Don't spoil the story! But I'm sure that your fans will know who it is.
Hermione: Can we get this started soon? And can we let Harry say the disclaimer and the summary for the story?
Harry: Thank you.
Disclaimer: Everyone should already know that AvatarCat11 doesn't own my own series or Warrior Cats.
Summary: After a horrible greenleaf with the Dursley cats, Nightpaw Potter wants to desperately get back to the Forest, School of Warriorism. But when he's ready to leave, a small strange animal named Bobby had come to warn him that disaster will strike if he goes back to the Forest.
And disaster does strike. In Nightpaw's second year, he has to come face-to-face with a self-centered cat named Gloryhound Lockhart, a depressed ghost named Moaning Turtleneck, and the unwanted attention towards Redpaw's little sister, Leafpaw.
But the real danger comes when cats are starting to turn to stone, and someone is behind this. Can it be Icepaw Malfoy, who is a more menacing opponent than ever? Can it be Badgerstripe Hagrid, whose past is finally revealed? Or is it the cat that everyone least expects...Nightpaw himself?
Updating date: March 31, 2011
Everyone in the room: Enjoy Nightfang and the Cavern of Secrets! (They sit in their chairs with refreshments as they look at the screen.)
The Worst Birthday Ever
In a medium-sized house in southern Alaska, a young black cat was sitting on the windowsill of his room as he looked into a photo album with moving pictures. This cat was Nightpaw Potter, a young orphaned cat, and he was looking at a picture that he got last year. One picture was of him as a kitten, his ginger-furred mother Lilypelt, and his black-pelted father Darkfire; the other was of him with his two best friends: American Shorthair Redpaw and Angora mix Fawnpaw.
A loud screech behind him made him turn around to see his Barn Owl/Snowy Owl mix, Katara, frantically beat her wings against the bars of her cage.
"I'm sorry, Katara, but I can't let you out right now. You know that's locked."
Katara gave an offended screech and beat her wings against the cage bars again.
The young tomcat sighed and tried to explain. "Look, I can't even use magic outside of school. So if Uncle Bristle hears you..."
Nightpaw shut his photo album, leaped down from the windowsill, and glared at Katara. "Now you've done it," he snapped before padding downstairs.
When he got downstairs and to the kitchen, the first creature that greeted him was Daniel, his Twoleg owner, as he patted him on the head before setting down a bowl of cat food onto the floor in front of him. Nightpaw realized that kittypet food didn't taste that good now because he had a chance to eat some prey; despite that, the kittypet food was okay.
But the next creature that greeted him was even less welcoming to him than Daniel: Bristle, his British Shorthair uncle. The fat gray tom was leering at him through narrowed eyes as he ate his kittypet food.
"I'm warning you now, boy," he growled at his nephew. "If you can't control that crazy bird, it'll have to go."
"But Katara's bored," Nightpaw sighed as he tried yet again to explain. "I haven't had any letters from my friends. Not one. If I just let her out once since she's used to flying around..."
"Who'd want to be friends with you?" his fat gray cousin, Tubby, sneered as he waddled over to them. He roughly pushed Nightpaw aside, went up to a stool, filched some bacon from the frying pan, and started eating like a pig.
But Bristle ignored him and sneered at him (with some cat food stuck to his face), "You think I'm that stupid? I should think you would be a little more thankful. We've raised you since you were a kitten, given you our food from the cat bowls...even let you have Tubby's second room, just out of the goodness of our hearts."
Nightpaw snorted. Not likely, he thought.
"Besides, I think I'll know what will happen to that bird if it's let out and wakes us up again!" At this, he turned around to exchange a dark look with Tulip, his skinny gray mate.
Nightpaw was about to complain some more, but he never got the chance because he was rudely interrupted by a loud rude burp from Tubby. The gray kittypet was busy stealing extra slices of bacon from the frying pan, but Nightpaw thought that his parents were stealing it from Daniel for him.
"I want more bacon!"
Why? He's gonna turn into a cannibal if he eats more, the fat cat's cousin sneered to himself.
Tulip turned her yellow eyes to her overweight son and purred, "There's some more in Daniel's frying pan if you want more. We must feed you up while we have the chance. I don't like the idea about giving that trash food from the obedience school."
"Nonsense, Tulip," Bristle purred to her heartily. "I haven't starved one bit while I myself was at Meltings. Tubby get enough food all right. Right, son?"
Tubby, who was so fat that the stool beneath him was fixing to break since he was eating at the table, gave his parents a smirk before turning to face Nightpaw. "Pass the bacon."
"You forgot the magic word," Nightpaw snapped back sharply. He had been infuriated at Bristle insisting on keeping Katara locked in her cage.
The effect of this simple sentence on the rest of the family was incredible: Tubby yelped and fell off his stool with a crash that shook the cats' food bowls, Daniel just gave him a weird look as if he threw up, Tulip gave a small shriek and lashed her tail around frantically, and Bristle jumped to his feet, veins throbbing in his temples and his yellow eyes filled with rage.
Gee... it was just a word.
"I didn't mean that! I meant to say 'please'!" Nightpaw meowed quickly. "I didn't mean..."
But Bristle was already screeching at him while he foamed at the mouth, "WHAT HAVE I TOLD YOU, BOY, ABOUT SAYING THAT 'M' WORD IN OUR HOUSE?"
Nightpaw tried to defend himself. "It's just a..."
"HOW DARE YOU THREATEN TUBBY LIKE THAT!" Bristle roared, reaching for a napkin and scratching it to bits. Nightpaw, meanwhile, was thinking, How'd I threaten the fat idiot?
"But I just..."
"I WARNED YOU ALREADY, BOY! I WILL NOT PUT UP WITH ANY MENTION OF YOUR FREAKISH NATURE IN THIS HOUSE!"
Nightpaw's fur was fluffed out for defense but all that he did was just look from his angry uncle to his scared-looking aunt, who was helping Tubby up, and over to Daniel, who was giving Bristle an angry look. He was the Twoleg that made sure his fourth orphaned cat was treated like an equal.
So he just growled, "Fine. I get it already!"
And Nightpaw backed away from his uncle, who was watching him through narrowed yellow eyes, and he went back to his breakfast.
Ever since Nightpaw returned to Daniel's house for greenleaf vacation, Uncle Bristle had treated him like a rattlesnake that was going to bite. It was because Nightpaw wasn't a normal cat; in fact, he was never normal. Nightpaw Potter was a warrior cat, a warrior fresh from his first year at the Forest, School of Warriorism. And if the Dursley cats were unhappy to have him back for greenleaf, it was nothing to how Nightpaw felt. But only Daniel was happy to have him back, for he had received a letter from the Forest and heard of everything that his own cat went through.
He missed the Forest so much it was like having constant heartburn. He missed the castle on the island, with its secret passageways and ghosts, his classes (though not Brokenfang, the Potions mentor), the mail arriving by owl, eating feasts in the Great Hall, sleeping in his nest in the tower dormitory, visiting Badgerstripe (the gamekeeper) in his hut next to the Forbidden Swamp in the grounds, and AirBall the most, the most popular sport in the warrior world (six tall goal posts, four flying balls, and fourteen players with wings).
All of Nightpaw's schoolbooks, his tail-wand, cape, pot, and amazing Icarus Three Thousand wings had been locked in a cage in the closet by Bristle as soon as Nightpaw came home. Why would the Dursley cats care if Nightpaw lost his place on the Clan AirBall team because of no practice over greenleaf? Why would they care if Nightpaw went back to school without any homework done?
The Dursley cats were what warriors called kittypets (not a drop of warrior blood in their veins), and as far as they knew, having a warrior in the family was considered very shameful. It was Bristle who had locked Katara inside her cage so that she wouldn't carry messages to anyone in the warrior world.
Nightpaw looked nothing like the rest of the family. Daniel was just a Twoleg scientist who dealt with animals, Bristle was a gray-furred (bristly) flat-faced heavy British Shorthair, Tulip was a gray-furred flat-faced bony British Shorthair, and Tubby was a gray-furred flat faced overweight British Shorthair; all three had yellow eyes. Nightpaw, on the other paw, was a Maine Coon and British Shorthair mix with long jet-black fur, large paws, a tall figure, and bright green eyes. But the strangest thing about him was a white lightning bolt-shaped scar on his forehead.
It was this scar that made Nightpaw so odd, even for a warrior cat. This scar was the only clue of the black cat's mysterious past and the reason he was left on the Dursley cats' doorstep eleven years ago.
At the age of one, for some reason, Nightpaw had endured an attack from the most vicious Dark Bear of all time: Red Helmet, whose name most warriors were still scared to speak. Nightpaw's parents were killed by him, but it was Nightpaw who escaped with his scar, and somehow, oddly, the bear's powers were destroyed the moment he failed to kill him. So the black tom was raised by his dead mother's sister and her owner. He spent ten bad years with them, never knowing why he kept making strange things occur without meaning to; he had believed the Dursleys' story that he had got his scar when his parents were run over by a monster.
But then, just a year ago, the Forest had written to Nightpaw and the whole story had finally come out. The Maine Coon mix had taken up his place at a warrior cat school, where he and his scar were famous...but now the school year was over, and he was back with the Dursley cats for greenleaf, back to being treated like a rat that fell into a dirty toilet and out again. But Daniel had been trying his best to make him feel welcome at home.
But the Dursley cats didn't even remember that today was Nightpaw's twelfth birthday. Surely, his hopes weren't high; they didn't give him a real present or even a cake... But just to ignore it totally...
At that moment, Bristle sat up from his food bowl, cleared his throat, and looked around at the three other cats. "As we all know, this day is a very important day."
Nightpaw looked over at him, hardly believing it.
"This will be the most important day in my career," Bristle went on proudly.
Hearing this, Nightpaw growled a little and returned to eating his Meow Mix. The black tomcat thought angrily, He's talking about that stupid dinner party. Stupid idiot.
His uncle had been talking about it for a few quarter-moons or so and he didn't speak of anything else, to tell the truth. Some rich cat from Britain and his mate were coming over for dinner, and after that, Bristle would ask them to work for Daniel at his workplace; Daniel was now working at the zoo as a cheerful zookeeper there.
Bristle cleared his throat again and meowed, "I think we'll run through the agenda once more. Now, we should all be in position at eight o'clock sharp. Tulip, where will you be?"
"In the front room," Tulip meowed punctually, "I will be waiting to welcome them courteously to our home."
"Good, good. And Tubby, what will you do then?"
Tubby made a wide simpering smile and purred, "I'll be waiting to open the cat flap. 'May I take your hats, Mr. and Mrs. Mason?'"
"They'll love him!" Tulip squealed rapturously while Nightpaw rolled his eyes.
Bristle nodded. "Good, good." But then he rounded on Nightpaw and growled. "And where will you be at, boy?"
Nightpaw gazed back at him, "I'll be up in my room, making no noise and pretending I don't exist."
"Precisely," Uncle Bristle growled unkindly. Then he went on, "Now I will lead them into the lounge, introduce you to them, Tulip, and pour them some drinks that Daniel has been saving. At eight-fifteen..."
"I'll announce dinner," Tulip mewed.
Bristle nodded. "Good. And Tubby?"
"'May I take you through to the dining room, Mrs. Mason?'" Tubby meowed, offering his fat chunky tail to an invisible cat.
Aunt Tulip sniffed. "My perfect gentleman!"
Nightpaw rolled his eyes, but he quickly finished it in time. "And you?" his uncle spat cruelly to the young black-furred apprentice.
"I'll be in my room, making no noise and pretending I don't exist," Nightpaw replied drearily.
"Exactly. Now, we should plan to get in a few good compliments at dinner. Have you any ideas, Tulip?"
Nightpaw sighed and turned his back on his obnoxious relatives. Amusing a guest was one thing, but practicing compliments to be suck-ups was another.
Tulip cleared her throat. "'Bristle had been telling me that you have a wonderful construction worker for an owner, Mr. Mason...do tell me where you bought your cat sweater, Mrs. Mason..."
Bristle nodded to her. "Perfect. Tubby?"
Tubby had that simpering grin on his face again as he meowed, "How about...'We had to write an essay about our hero at our obedience school, Mr. Mason, and I wrote about you.'"
This was too much for both Aunt Tulip and Nightpaw. Tulip immediately burst into tears and embraced her son, while Nightpaw looked away from the others so that they wouldn't see him laughing. He knew fully well that they would make him behave so that they could spoil him some more.
"And you, boy?" Bristle barked at him.
Nightpaw quickly fought to keep his face straight as he turned back around. "I'll be in my room, making no noise and pretending I'm not there," he meowed dully again. He hated going like this when his own relatives were abusing him. Daniel would be going away at a party for the night and he wouldn't be back for a while.
Bristle growled forcefully, "That's right. The Masons don't know a thing about you and it shall stay that way. When dinner's over, Tulip, you take Mrs. Mason back to the front room for tea and I shall bring the subject around to being a secretary for Daniel. With any luck, we'll have the deal signed and sealed before the news comes on at ten. We will shop for a vacation home in Portugal this time tomorrow."
Nightpaw didn't feel that excited about this proposition. He didn't think that the Dursley cats would like him any better in Portugal than they did at Wrangell, Alaska.
"Right...I'm off to town with Daniel to pick up the dinner cat sweaters for Tubby and me. And you," he growled at Nightpaw. "You stay out of your aunt's way while she's cleaning up."
At least they aren't making me clean up for them, Nightpaw thought to himself. But he did feel upset about no one caring about his birthday, so he turned around and left through the back door. It was a beautiful sunny day outside, but he was still sad about this. He padded across the lawn, leaped up to the garden bench and sat down on there, and sang sadly under his breath:
"Happy birthday to me.
Happy birthday to me.
I feel so damn lonely.
Won't someone take me?"
There were now no cards and no presents to be expected, and he would be spending the evening pretending not to exist. He gazed despondently into the hedge; he had never felt so lonely in his life. More than anything else at the Forest, more even than playing AirBall, the black cat missed his best friends, Redpaw Weasley and Fawnpaw Granger.
However, they didn't seem to miss him at all. Neither Redpaw nor Fawnpaw had written back to him all greenleaf, although Redpaw had meowed that he was going to ask his friend to come and stay. Often, Nightpaw was on the threshold of unlocking his owl's cage with magic and sending Katara to his friends with a letter, but it wasn't it. Juvenile warriors weren't allowed to use magic or display it to kittypets outside of school. Nightpaw hadn't told his relatives this; he knew they were scared that he might turn them all into ants that stopped them locking him in the cage in the closet with his tail-wand and racing wings.
But he was allowed to fight and hunt outside of school; he just had to not use magic to hunt or fight.
For the first couple quarter-moons back, Nightpaw enjoyed muttering claptrap words under his breath and watching Tubby scream and run off as fast as his fat legs would carry him. But the long quiet from his friends made Nightpaw feel so disconnected from his true world that even taunting his cousin lost its fun, now that they forgot his birthday.
He wished that he could be given a message from the Forest and be given a message from any warrior. He would be almost glad of a sight of his archrival, Icepaw Malfoy, just to make sure that it wasn't a dream. But his first year at the Forest wasn't all that fun. At the end of the school year, he came face-to-face with none other than Red Helmet himself; his helper Quailflight Quirrel had been killed by Nightpaw.
Red Helmet was a ruin of his former self, but he was still scary, still cunning, and still resolute on regaining power. Nightpaw had slipped through Red Helmet's claws for a second time, but it was a narrow escape since he almost died, and even now, nearly a moon later, Nightpaw would still wake up in the night, breathing hard and wondering where Red Helmet was at, remembering his enraged face and his small glowing red eyes...
Suddenly, Nightpaw sat upright and quickly on the garden bench. He was staring vaguely into the hedge...and it was staring back at him. Two large bright orange eyes had appeared among the leaves. The Maine Coon/British Shorthair mix jumped to his paws when a mocking voice floated across the lawn.
"I know what day it is," Tubby sang, toddling like a fat pig toward him.
The huge orange eyes blinked and quickly vanished.
"What the hell do you want?" He still didn't take his eyes off the spot where the eyes had been at.
"I know what day it is," Tubby repeated, coming straight up to him.
Nightpaw rolled his green eyes and retorted sarcastically, "Good job. You've finally learned the days of the week. Whoop-dee-doo."
Tubby sneered, "Today's your birthday, runt. Why don't you have any cards? I bet you don't even have any friends at that freak place you call an obedience school!"
"Don't let your parents hear you talking about my school," Nightpaw told him calmly.
Tubby ruffled up his fur, which was still kitten-soft from all the additional pampering from his parents. Nightpaw's pelt, meanwhile, was at first soft and very thick during leaf-bare at the Forest, just like a wild cat. But since he was back, he had to groom himself every day.
"Why are you staring at the hedge?" Tubby meowed warily.
Deciding to pay him back for saying that he had no friends, Nightpaw replied, "Oh, nothing. I'm just deciding on what spell can set it on fire."
Tubby stumbled backward onto his bottom, his yellow eyes wide with fright and his chunky face tensed up. "You c-can't do that! Dad already told you that you can't do m-magic! He said that he'll throw you out of the house! And you haven't got anywhere else to go and you don't have any friends to take you!"
Snarling at that, Nightpaw meowed in a fierce voice, "Jiggery pokery! Hocus pocus! Squiggly wiggly..."
"MOOOOOOM!" howled Tubby, tripping over his clumsy paws as he dashed back toward the house. "MOOOOOOM! He's doing you-know-what!"
Despite smiling at watching him flee, Nightpaw paid very much for his small moment of fun. As neither Tubby nor the hedge was burnt to ashes, Aunt Tulip knew he didn't really do any magic, but he still had to duck as she aimed a heavy blow at his head with her claws. Then she gave him a lot of work to do, promising him that he wouldn't eat again until he was finished.
While Tubby lazed around while eating his favorite cat treats and sneering nastily at Nightpaw, Nightpaw had to clean the windows, wash Daniel's monster, mow the lawn, trim the flowerbeds, prune and water the roses, and repaint the garden bench. These were all tasks impossible for a cat and he suspected that they just made a slave out of him to do their dirty work...literally.
The sun blazed overhead, burning the back of his neck and making him hot under his fur. The black cat knew that he should not have risen to Tubby's trick, but the fat gray cat had said the very thing that Nightpaw had been thinking himself. Maybe he didn't have any friends at the Forest. He definitely remembered almost everyone hating him near the end of last school year.
I wish they could see the famous Nightpaw now, he thought savagely as he kicked manure on the flower beds, his back aching. I wish they could see me as the slave those kittypets made me! And is Daniel here to help me? No! Why should he care now?
It was half past seven in the evening when at last, worn out, he could hear Aunt Tulip calling for him. "Get in here! And walk on the newspaper!"
Nightpaw did so and he moved gladly into the shade of the gleaming kitchen. He could see one thing on top of the fridge. It was tonight's dessert: a huge mound of whipped cream and sugared violets on top of a large velvet cake. A loin of roast pork was sizzling in the oven. Nightpaw's taste buds wailed at the thought of not eating any of this, but he had no choice but to resist eating it.
"Eat quickly! The Masons will be here soon!" Aunt Tulip snapped.
She was pointing with her tail to two small slices of bread and a chunk of cheese on the kitchen floor. Nightpaw glared down at the plate with disgust; he almost told her he would rather eat a mouse than that. But that would only get him into more trouble and he didn't want to risk being forced to do more work.
So he groomed his fur fast, washed his paws in the sink, and quickly ate through his shameful dinner. At the moment that he was finished, Aunt Tulip whisked away his plate.
So Nightpaw turned around and padded away from the she-cat. But as he passed the door to the living room, the British Shorthair mix caught a glimpse of Uncle Bristle and Tubby in bow ties and fancy cat sweaters. He only just leaped up to the upstairs landing when the doorbell rang and Bristle's angry face appeared at the foot of the stairs.
"Remember, boy. Just make one sound and you'll pay!"
Nightpaw sighed, nodded, and crossed over to his bedroom with one paw in the room. Quickly, he slipped inside, closed the door, and turned to collapse on his nest. But the problem was that there was already someone jumping on it.
To be continued...
AvatarCat11: I hope you liked the first chapter of Nightfang and the Cavern of Secrets!
Harry: I don't really like it. But Dudley and I are on good terms now.
Ron: Just don't worry about your aunt and uncle, though. They're just strange Muggles, that's all! Anyways, who should say the review thing?
Hermione: I will. (She and Ron both exchange a quick kiss before she faces the readers) Since this is the first chapter of Nightfang and the Cavern of Secrets, I propose that anyone who reviews it will be given a box of virtual candy from Honeydukes.
AvatarCat11: Good job as usual, you three!
Golden Trio: Thanks!
Everyone in the room: See ya next time!