"Please, I love you." Desperation edged her mew as she padded across their territory, their pawsteps making marks in the snow beneath them as they walked.

"Crowfeather please, just let me love you." Nightcloud's breath puffed out in front of her mouth.

Crowfeather turned around, his smoky gray fur bristling, his blue eyes sparkling with anger. "But don't you get it! I don't love you!" He snarled.

Nightcloud stopped walking, her face ashen. It seemed as if the world stopped around them. The wind stopped blowing, the rabbits stopped hopping. Crowfeather turned around. The snow seemed to have stopped falling around them. The world was focused on them.

"I'm sorry Nightcloud, you are beautiful, but I can't love you." Crowfeather's blue eyes sparkled with grief as he shook his head. His tail drooped and his head hung low. He looked defeated.

"Is it because of Leafpool." Nightcloud spat her name like it was venom on her tongue. "I'm carrying your kits, been your mate for all these moons, and this is what you say to me." sadness laced her mew. Crowfeather turned back around and kept walking, his tail lashing from side to side. Nightcloud stood frozen, unable to move. Her belly weighed her down as she trudged on.

Nightcloud's black pelt stood out against the white as she stomped through the snow, following her mates pawprints.

I love you.

The only words she had ever wanted him to say to her.

I love you

The only words he would never utter to her.

I love you

The words that would never be ever, ever angled at her. Nightcloud felt a sense of longing and sorrow wrap its self around her like a snake, threatening to strangle her. Nightcloud gasped for breath as she ran wildly, unable to find Crowfeather.

What if he's left? What if he left with her! Nightcloud had promised herself she would never even think Leafpool's name, let alone murmur it aloud. Her belly weighed her down as she followed his pawprints to the border. There he stood, longing in his blue eyes as he stared across the border. Amber eyes gleamed back with the same longing from a fern.

Longing

Something in his eyes that Nightcloud would never see for her.

Longing

Something only she would see

Longing

Something Nightcloud wanted badly from her mate

Longing

Something she would never see from him...

I love you