Four cats sat frozen in a wide circle, each one very unique in their own right.
One, a muscular tom-cat, had a blazing pelt of wavering flames.
One, a she-cat, had a coat of flowing water.
One was a tom with a pelt of hazy shadows.
The last cat was a she-cat with a billowing, breezy coat of clouds.
Like statues, the four were motionless, lifeless even.
It was utterly silent.
The flaming tom calmly opened his eyes and lifted his head.
A panicked gray tom galloped uneasily in, his amber eyes stretched wide in terror.
"Yes Ashwhisker, what do you have to report?"
Ashwhisker heaved and sputtered,
With a strained squeak, Ashwhisker fell forward.
The feathery gray she-cat sprang forward and inspected him.
"He's just unconcious. Here, he just needs this"
The cat swept her downy tail lightly over Ashwhisker's face while quietly chanting: Mimi kuponya, mimi kuponya, acha majeraha kutoweka na mwanga kuwa upya.
A brilliant light emited from the hairs on her tail and in a matter of seconds, Ashwhisker was revived.
Firestorm swept his tail signaling for the she-cat to get back.
"Thank you Featherwind, return to your place."
Ashwhisker bowed his head to Featherwind in thanks before she returned to her spot in the circle.
Firestorm flicked his ear, signaling for Ashwhisker to join them in the middle of the circle.
"Yes Firestorm," Ashwhisker mumbled and sat.
The shadowed tom growled, "Well? Get on with it squirt!"
Ashwhisker gulped, "Y-yes Nightfire, right away,"
He stood up,
"Well, I've gotten news from Blossompetal. She told me two kits were born."
Nightfire hissed, "Is that it, kits?"
"N-no, not exactly. See, these kits aren't from the same litter and..."
Ashwhisker lifted his head to stare straight into Firestorm's eyes.
"The spirit energy has accumulated and formed the kits."
Firestorm was drawn blank for a moment.
"Summon the rest of Ministry XII," he whispered.
Firestorm's flamed fur enlivened, the fire swirling around him like a hellish inferno.
"Summon the Ministry!" Firestorm screeched and smacked a paw across Ashwhisker's face.
Ashwhisker nodded his head hastily and ran out of the room in a panicked frenzy.
Firestorm swerved back to the other three cats with him.
"Get ready, the time has come."
A pale gray tom opened his eyes and immidiatly found himself staring into a pair of deep green eyes.
"Whoa, are you an angel?" he whispered playfully.
"Ha, you wish. Come on Iceshade, we're getting our apprentices today."
Iceshade groggily stood up and stared back at the cream she-cat who had gotten him up.
"Well, there is a bright side to this, I do like waking up to a nice sight," Iceshade purred and rubbed his cheek against the she-cat's own.
Startled for a second, the she-cat relaxed and returned the gesture warmly.
"Come on, let's get ready," she meowed after a few seconds and pushed him away gently.
She began to pad out with Iceshade's gaze following her as she left.
"Whatever you say Fawnstorm," Iceshade mumbled wistfully and followed her lead.
Blinding sunlight greeted his arrival as he padded out into the clearing.
Clan life was normal despite the coming apprentieship.
It wasn't until moonhigh that the event would take place.
Still, there was a certain air of bustle in the camp anyway.
That's just the way he liked it.
A straight shot across the clearing from the warriors den was the den where their leader slept.
Excitement hurried his casual steps at the prospect of recieving an apprentice.
The great leader, Owlstar, was waiting patiently by the entrance of his carved rock den, his silken tail wavering back and forth patiently.
"Come in, you two," Owlstar greeted and led the two young warriors inside.
Since this was Iceshade's first time inside the den, he was speechless in awe.
It was grand.
Luminecent crystals lined the walls and glimmered in the morning sunlight.
Their reflection projected radient streams of iridescent chroma.
All of the beams ended in the middle of the cave where a lone tree stump sat and glimmered in the light.
"Come forth," Owlstar beckoned with a sweep of his tail and sat on the tree stump.
Fawnstorm and Iceshade, still in shock from the glorious scene, distantly nodded and began to step forward.
"Do you two know why I called you in here?"
Iceshade and Fawnstorm looked at each other, confused, and nodded no.
Owlstar nodded as well.
"Well, as you both know, you are to recieve apprentices today."
Iceshade grinned at the mention of the event.
"And I want you to go to the nursery and meet them. Get to know them a little."
Fawnstorm looked confused.
"That would be great, Owlstar, but we don't even know our apprentices yet."
Owlstar looked amused.
"That is for you to find out. It is said that mentors and apprentices are destined for each other and are always connected."
"Great," thought Iceshade, "More riddles from the world's wisest leader."
Iceshade was cut off by Owlstar, who began nudging the two warriors towards the entrance of his den.
"Good luck, you two!" Owlstar called as they began to pad away.
"What do you think he meant by that?" Fawnstorm asked as they headed towards the nursery.
"I don't know, but I guess we'll just have to find out," Iceshade meowed.
"Mrrow! Grr! Mrrow!"
Hisses and yelps were heard from inside the nursery.
Inside, Deerstep was hastily licking her two kits, Creamkit and Shrewkit.
Shrewkit hissed, "Momma! Stop it! You're messing up my mane!"
He pulled away to puff out his neck fur, showing off his "mane".
"Dear, even LionClan cats had their mothers groom them," Deerstep cooed and held him close to continue washing.
Creamkit giggled, prompting Shrewkit to pounce on her and pull at her ears.
"Looks like our apprentices will be more trouble than we bargained for," Fawnstorm said loudly, catching the attention of the two kits.
Iceshade was puzzled.
How did she know these two were the ones?
The kits immediatly stopped their fight and rushed over to the two warriors.
"Whoa," Creamkit whispered to Iceshade, "You're huge!"
Iceshade was pretty sure this was his apprentice.
"Yep, and I'm going to show you how to be a strong warrior soon too," Iceshade purred and bent down so his nose was touching hers.
Creamkit, reckless with excitement, pushed up to rub her cheek with his, but collided with his nose instead.
"Ouch!" the two cats cried in pain.
Creamkit looked up in embarrassment, "Sorry, Iceshade."
Iceshade looked back warmly, "It's alright. Let's just go out for now and get to know each other."
"Good, just watch where your back paws are placed and how they are rotated," Iceshade laughed.
Creamkit lashed her tail and leapt at the warrior.
Iceshade lazily stepped aside and let Creamkit shoot past him... and into a gorse bush.
"Ouch!" an annoyed screech erupted from the bush.
Shrewkit sneered, "Wow sis, I know we're still not apprentices yet, but I didn't think you were that bad!"
Creamkit snarled and leapt at her brother.
"Stop, guys please!" Iceshade reasoned.
This seems familiar, doesn't it?
Suddenly, a splitting pain exploded in his head,
And then everything went black.
We used to play like this...
It is eerily familiar.
We had so much fun,
Through the darkness, faint images began to appear.
Two young kits...
Playing happily, no worries clouding their minds.
Suddenly, a storm hit.
Flooding water broke the kits' play and both began drifting away from each other.
The pale gray kit screeched as his partner drifted away, farther and farther until all there was left visible was a splotch of cream fur over the waves...
The gray tom began to fade as well and Iceshade's vision became blurry.
Iceshade forced his eyes open though his head was spinning madly.