Firepaw turned from the ShadowClan warrior, hissing. He turned when he heard Spottedleaf yowl in agony.
- "Firepaw!" she screeched, tearing at Clawface's ear.
Firepaw's face grew hot with rage. Letting out a battle cry, he leaped onto Clawface's back, swiping his claws down his spine. Clawface yowled, trying to roll over to get to Firepaw. As Firepaw jumped off his back, he bit his paw, tearing the skin. Spottedleaf growled, lashing a paw out at his face. Clawface screamed again, and ran out of camp like a terrified kit.
- "Firepaw, thank you." said Spottedleaf calmly. She touched her nose to his paw pad. The battle was over. "Come on, you need that paw taken care of."
Firepaw padded into the den, smelling the strong herbs. Spottedleaf pulled out some Coltsfoot from the wall, and chewed it up, squeezing the poultice onto the scarred pad. She then took some cobwebs, and pushed them gently towards Firepaw.
- "Can you put it on yourself? I need to check the others."
- "Sure. Can you check on Yellowfang, please?" Asked Firepaw, hoping the wry, old she-cat had not been harmed. "I'll be on it" Said Spottedleaf.She sighed,If only she wasn't a medicien cat.....
Spottedleaf walked into the medicine cat den, gasping at what had just happened. She... she wasn't sure... She and Firepaw, who had been Fireheart for two nights now, had gone out to the Sunningrocks late at night. They had looked at the moon, and no one figured out. She had done this with him about a quarter moon ago. Certainly she couldn't be...?
- "Hey Spottedleaf, I think I have a belly ache," said Mousefur, just padding in. The spunky she-cat did seem to be in pain, for a minute later she was crouching down, moaning in the hurt.
- "It's ok, Mousefur. I'll give you some juniper berry, and no more patrols for the rest of today, understood?" said Spottedleaf sternly.
- "Pfft. Young she-cat, thinks she knows everything...I understand." growled Mousefur, looking at the floor of the den. "Good. Now, you chew them up, I have to see someone." said Spottedleaf, reaching for the precious blue berries.
Mousefur looked at her questioningly, then shot her ears forward, as though interested in what Spottedleaf would say next.
- "Got your eyes on a young tom, eh? I won't tell anyone. Now as for me, I'd prefer not to have a mate..." explained the wiry brown she-cat. Spottedleaf let Mousefur drift off on her own, sighing. She knew she was going to have Fireheart's kits. She knew if anyone figured out she would be in much trouble.
Spottedleaf padded out of camp, trotting over to the Sunningrocks. Fireheart was standing there, looking at her with pleasurable eyes. Spottedleaf ran over to Fireheart, touching noses with him when she saw him.
- "Oh, Fireheart, I have wonderful news." she let the moment hang, and Fireheart's eyes turned excited and happy. "I am going to have our kits."
Instead of yowling with excitement like Spottedleaf thought, he just slowly turned, not meeting his eyes to hers.
- "Spottedleaf..." he gasped. "I didn't think this would happen."
- "Me neither. But what's done is done. We can't change the past." mewed Spottedleaf, gently letting her tail tip rest on his shoulder.
- "I know." he sighed. "I...I didn't want this. If Tigerclaw found out, he'd--"
- "But he won't," Spottedleaf cut him off, hope in her eyes. "No one will ever know."
- "How will you feed them?"
- "I won't. I can always say I found them by the Thunderpath, that maybe a Twoleg dumped them."
Fireheart sighed again. This was not a safe situation for ThunderClan. He then turned to Spottedleaf, and they touched noses. He licked her cheek.
- "If you say so." he meowed.
Spottedleaf screeched in pain as a spasm shook her. Her kits were coming! She had to get somewhere no one would find her...she didn't know where, but somewhere, and fast! Another spasm sent pain through her, down her legs and all throughout. She grabbed the strengthening herbs, and ran out of the den, only to run into Graystripe, dropping them.
- "Spottedleaf, what's the rush?" he asked as he helped her pick them up. Spottedleaf ignored him, only to drop them again. When Graystripe once again tried to help, Spottedleaf hissed, and swatted her paw at his face. Graystripe, taken aback, just barely dodged the blow.
- "Calm down. Can I help?" asked the hefty gray tomcat. Spottedleaf gave him a look, a sheer, quick look, and nodded.
As they padded out of camp quickly, together, Spottedleaf poured out everything she had been hiding. Graystripe looked only faintly surprised.
- "I can't go much farther. I'll do it at Four Trees." meowed Spottedleaf. They jumped over the log, Spottedleaf barely making it, and she lay down in a slew of moss Fireheart had prepared for her. He told her he would get them ready all over the forest.
A spasm took over the tortoiseshell, and she fell to the ground, pain taking her over, too. Spasms went over and over, and Graystripe kept telling her how strong she was for a medicine cat. After what seemed like moons of pain, one finally came.
- "Lick it-aargh!" screeched the medicine cat over the pain. Graystripe obeyed, licking the young kit. She was a dark ginger she-cat, Graystripe could tell. Spottedleaf thought it was all over for a moment, and she had only one kit.
- "There's one more, hang in there, Spottedleaf!" Spottedleaf groaned as another chain of spasms came.If I could barely handle that, thought Spottedleaf, how could I handle another?
The pain shook the beautiful tortie as Graystripe watched her helplessly. There was nothing he could do to spare her the pain. All at once, the feebleness and scent of blood left the air. There was another kit, a tortoishell she-cat. Spottedleaf weakly got up, but smiled when she saw her kits. She lay back down, scooting them over so they could feed. Graystripe stared at them jealously. "Fireheart will be proud of them." he declared, licking his paw and washing it over his ear.
- "He will. I wonder what paths they'll have?"
- "They need names before they can have paths."
Spottedleaf thought for a moment. She looked at the dark ginger. Squirrelkit. She shifted her gaze to the other one. It looked a bit like her. At that moment, the perfect name came to mind.
- "Squirrelkit and Leafkit." said Spottedleaf matter-of-factly.
- "Don't you think that would be to obvious?" inquired Graystripe.
- "I wouldn't think so."
- "I know there paths," mewed the tom, "Squirrelkit will be Squirrelstar, and Leafkit will be a medicine cat."
Spottedleaf smiled, looking at her beautiful kits. How proud Fireheart would be of them...
Spottedleaf carried Leafkit back to camp, and Graystripe carried Squirrelkit. Leafkit's fur kept tickling Spottedleaf's nose. As the two-no, four-cats walked into camp, Sandpaw bounded up to them, full of zip.
- "Kits? Whose kits are those? Not mine, nope nope nope!"
Spottedleaf set Leafkit down, laughing at Sandpaw's energy.
- "We know they're not yours," chuckled Spottedleaf, "we picked them up near the Thunderpath. Me and Graystripe think a twoleg or rogue dumped them."
Sandpaw turned sadly, not knowing what she thought was a sad story was a lie.
- "But it's ok," recovered Graystripe quickly, "because ThunderClan are going to take care of them. Oh, and the tortie is Leafkit, and the ginger is Squirrelkit."
Sandpaw twisted around, all excited again. She stuck her tail up besisdes Squirrelkit's little one.
- "Hey! We look alike! Hi Squirrelkit! Wanna be friends?"
As Sandpaw kept cooing over the little kit, Spottedleaf went on over to Bluestar's den. Of course she had to ask her Clan leader to welcome what everyone would think were kits of rogue cats! Hey, it's better than them knowing about me and Fireheart, she thought quickly, to try to ensure her own guilt.
- "Bluestar!" she called, "Bluestar, can I ask you something?"
A soothing middle-aged voice called back, "Of course you may, my dear Spottedleaf." Spottedleaf walked through the tangle of lichen, nodding at Bluestar as she sat down beside her.
- "Me and Graystripe found some rogue kits beside the Thunderpath. They will die if we do not take care of them. Can't one of our queens take them in?" meowed Spottedleaf, suddenly tired of all the lies, especially to her good friend, Bluestar.
- "How many?" Bluestar asked calmly. When Spottedleaf answered two, something secretive in Bluestar's eyes flashed, something no one alive knew but herself.
- "Of course we may." Bluestar's voice shook when she answered, and Spottedleaf nodded, padding out of the den, trying to decide which queen to give them to.
Speckletail? No, she'd be too hard on them, thought Spottedleaf sullenly, then something snapped in her head. Brindleface! I'm sure she's upset with the death of her kits, she'll be perfect! Spottedleaf told Graystripe the news, and they took the kits into the nursery.
- "Brindleface, can you feed these kits? They're rogue's kits, we're certain." asked Graystripe, prodding Brindleface with a paw to see if she was awake.
Frostfur saw this, and padded over to Brindleface. She whispered only slightly loudly in her ear, so she wouldn't embarass the young queen.
- "Stop ignoring them, Brindleface. Those cute kits will die without you. You're the only queen who isn't either too old or has too many already." growled the young white she-cat, rolling her eyes.
Brindleface nodded hollowly, and mewed, "Give em'." she scooted them roughly towards her belly, and the pitiful kits drank greedily at the warm milk. As soon as Brindleface understood, she brightened up, and started gently stroking Squirrelkit's fur with her tongue, for it was greatly matted for such a young cat. Fireheart padded in, mewing a greeting to Spottedleaf, his great love. He watched the kits warmly. He, Spottedleaf, and Graystripe exchanged glances, knowing the future of ThunderClan may lie in the paws of these cats. The paws of two kits, who's kin may hold the power of the star's in their paws.
Squirrelstar stared lovingly at her kit, Blazekit. The fire in her pelt, the green eyes of her grandfather...Blazekit was beautiful. Her deputy, and mate, Ashfur, watched as she played with her cousin, Whitekit. Squirrelstar licked Ashfur's ear.
- "Go get some rest, my love, for the Gathering is tomorrow. You know I won't be able to travel with you."
- "No. I want to stay with my kit... and my mate." Ashfur shifted his gaze from Blazekit to Squirrelstar and back again.
Ashfur stroked the back of Blazekit with his paw. No matter what the Clans said, he or Squirrelstar would mentor this adorable lump of fur. Blazekit turned, the flame shining in her eyes.
- "Papa, I'm playing! I'm playing with Whitekit." hissed Blazekit.
- "I know."
Ashfur stood up, nuzzling Squirrelstar's cheek. He padded out of the den. Blazekit was his kit, and no one else's. The kit looked a lot like Firestar, who had passed. In fact, too much like Firestar. Was his kit the reincarnation of the firey leader? Certainly not...but then again...
Phew, that took a long time. But it was worth it! I'm not even going to bother dressing up my siggie.-- Cloverfang 20:21, 18 June 2009 (UTC)Cloverfang