Chapter 1 - The Ceremony

Iceclaw gingerly lifted himself up from the Moonpool, glancing around, wary, uneasy, and uncertain. The dark and cold wrapped around him like a cloak, its bitter edge ruffling his pelt; he still could not understand how this could be the mysterious dream that his medicine cat, Lynxfur, had promised him. He took a step toward the icy edge of the water, thinking perhaps that one of his ancestors would appear before him if he made contact with the magical liquids of the Moonpool; it was then that the shadowy shape made its appearance.

"I am Star, leader of StarClan."

The deep, flat-toned voice belonged to a tall, muscled tom that stood towering over Iceclaw, pale blue eyes fixing Iceclaw with an appraising look. His golden-yellow pelt shimmered like the stars themselves as he shifted his set of back legs, flexing them, impatient.

"Leader of StarClan?" Iceclaw asked, a puzzled expression rippling across the thinly carved features of his face. "StarClan doesn't have a leader!"

The ThunderClan warrior took a step back, then forward, as Star turned on him, his bold statement hitting the StarClan cat's perfectly composed face like a blow.

"Silence!" he snapped, recovering quickly, "My name is Star, and I alone will give you your nine lives."

He strode toward Iceclaw, who balked - shrank - under the icy stare of the tall, golden-furred tom cat who claimed he was leader of the legendary, all-powerful StarClan. Star, more calmly now, tapped his cold, rubbery muzzle against Iceclaw's head and sent a wave pulsing into the ThunderClan cat. "Warrior of ThunderClan, you will be now known as Icestar, the one who leads the Clan you have served so faithfully - and so I give you your nine lives. Use them well."

Star let his gaze rest upon Icestar for one last second, before he whipped around, heading down the path that lead away from the Moonpool, only to be met by a young tabby she-cat, a half-hidden look of unhappiness shadowing her huge, amber eyes. 

"Bronzespots, what are you doing here?" Star demanded, his blue eyes flashing angrily.

Icestar stared at the newcomer, eyes widening. Bronzespots was Thornstar's deputy, the deputy of the leader that had come before him; he immediately greeted her with a dip of his head. She walked into the better starlight and Icestar recognized her red-brown fur, littered with bronze-colored spots.

"Greetings," Bronzespots mewed, dipping her head in the traditional signal of respect - toward Star, though it was obvious that it was meant toward Icestar. "May I give Icestar one of his nine lives?"

"No!" Star snarled, parting his lips to expose long, angry fangs.

Bronzespots opened her mouth as if to say something, but deciding against it, merely settled with a look of hatred toward Star, and sending remorseful glance toward Icestar, padded away, her tail first dragging in the dust, then lifting it slightly, as if to prove that Star could not put her down.

Star stared after Bronzespots, a satisfied smirk upon his face, then abruptly turned, glaring threateningly at the newly named Icestar. When the leader of StarClan spoke, his voice was edged with a dangerous sharpness, "I am Star, leader of StarClan. Do not tell anycat of this - " he paused, to lower his voice into a growl, and unsheathe a pair of iron, fang-like claws - "unless you wish to make enemies with the most powerful cat of the forest, and the paths unwinded before it."

Chapter 2 - The Return

Icestar sat up, flicking his nose away from the icy waters of the Moonpool, his mind in turmoil. StarClan had a leader - and a not-so-friendly one, at that. He was still dwelling over the meaning of his odd dream, when Lynxfur slid out of the dark, padding up to him.

"Did..did everything go...okay?" Lynxfur asked softly, choosing her words carefully. Her large, ivory-brown eyes blinked once, twice.

He hesitated, then remembering Star's last, onimous words, he settled his voice.

"Yes," Icestar lied, sounding confident, the tremble just out of his voice. "It's just..I never thought such a thing would happen..."

"It's all right," Lynxfur mewed soothingly, her voice radiating her concern and understanding. Her brown gaze lingered upon Icestar for a moment, unsure if her leader was telling the truth. Finally deciding that it was best to keep the matter untouched, she swung her head sideways. "We should get back to Camp, before something happens."

Icestar nodded his approval of the preposition, and standing up, stepped out of the Moonpool's half-moon cavern.

The pair traveled through the rough terrain, twisting through the forboding trees of ShadowClan. Luckily, the two cats had managed through without bumping into a patrol, which quickened there journey back to ThunderClan Camp by far. They had just stepped into the more friendly, leafy-gladed trees of the ThunderClan portion of the forest near the lake when a ball of gray fur shot out of the bushes.

"Gotcha this time, Iceclaw!" a voice yowled triumphantly, pinning the ThunderClan leader down by the shoulders. Icestar twisted around and saw the familiar face of Meltingpaw. He had always been friendly with Meltingpaw since the young cat had stumbled across the Clans from his home in the mountains.

"Meltingpaw, you shouldn't suprise Icestar like that," Lynxfur scolded, amusement clear upon her face, as Icestar gave his apprentice a tired smile. "He's exhausted from his journey to the Moonpool."

"Fine, then," Meltingpaw conceded, releasing Icestar from his hold. It didn't seem the young tom cat was bothered that his mentor was now a leader, and neither did he seem, at all, awed. "I'll let you 'rest', so Lynxfur won't make a fuss...for now..." the gray tom added onimously.

Icestar purred at Meltingpaw, at the same time Lynxfur looked at Meltingpaw with an expression of mock anger, and stumbled over a rock. The sharp blade of the stone went spinning past the ThunderClan leader, cutting off a portion fur from Icestar's leg. Blood trickled down his limb.

Lynxfur and Meltingpaw instantly rushed forward, eyes wide with shock.

"Icestar!" Meltingpaw yelped, then clamped his jaws shut when he saw that it was nothing but a small slash through the flesh.

"Come on," Lynxfur mewed, supporting Icestar's shoulder with her own, "I'll help you get back to Camp."

The ThunderClan leader could feel the apprentice's worried gaze drilling through his back as Lynxfur assisted him through the bramble tunnel that led into Camp.

That was Meltingpaw. Always worrying about him, more than other cats, even though he was just an apprentice. It was strange how Meltingpaw had just...come from the mountains. Maybe something had happened there, or maybe Meltingpaw had some sort of mission...

Icestar shook his head of those thoughts and leaped onto the Highledge. He glanced down onto the busy Camp. Swiftfur was leading out the dawn patrol and his friend, Birchpelt, was setting up hunting patrols. Everything seemed normal. Although many cats were turning to the High Rock and mewing greetings to him, everything was as usual. ThunderClan was ThunderClan - it wouldn't be effected just because StarClan had an unfriendly leader. No, Icestar thought. ThunderClan will stay safe.

Bronzespots ducked into the tunnels which had connected the territories of ThunderClan, WindClan, and ShadowClan. In the new StarClan, however, they served as the final sanctuary for the unexposed members of the Rebellion. She crawled into a wide, open clearing and saw Wolfclaw sitting nervously by the stream.

"Bronzespots, you're late. I thought you might have been caught!" Wolfclaw mewed, his voice thick with worry.

"I know. I wanted to see if I could give Icestar one of his nine lives," Bronzespots mewed, her voice weary.

"You know Star won't let you do that. He's changed all the rules around here," the tom chided.

"I know, but -."

A shape stumbled through the darkness and tumbled into them. Bronzespots and Wolfclaw jumped up at the sound, only to see that it was Flamestorm, an ally of the Rebels.

"They're coming," he said, his voice quivering, "Star and Hawkfrost - they're coming. They followed you, Bronzespots, and now they're coming to get you!"

The two cats looked at each other in horror.

"Scatter among the Clans! Bronzespots, you take Flamestorm in the tunnels to ShadowClan territory. I'll go to WindClan territory," Wolfclaw ordered, "Now run!"

The three Rebels fled down the tunnels, just before Star and Hawkfrost arrived, followed by a half a score of warriors.

"They escaped," Hawkfrost hissed, his claws sinking into the earth, his tail lashing. A flare of anger lit up his icy blue eyes.

"They can't run away forever," Star mewed calmly, though his fur bristled with rage . "One day these Rebels will have to face us...and then we'll make sure they lose!"

Chapter 3 - The Battle

Star shaded his eyes as he looked across the fields to the other side where the Rebels sat, waiting for the right moment of attack. The group of Rebels had grown quite large, but those who followed Star had much greater numbers. He swiped his tounge over his lips, anticipating the coming battle. After the Rebels were annhiliated, StarClan would be his to rule!

"I don't understand why they want to fight," Hawkfrost mewed. "We outnumber them at least four to one. Maybe they have some kind of secret weapon, or maybe they have more cats than we thought - "

"Leave it alone!" Tigerstar cut in, shooting a glare at the cat that had once followed him, "When they face us, its obvious who will win. And then we will be rid of Rebels!"

"Be quiet!" Star hissed, his ears pricked as he watched the Rebels intently. "They're coming."

The Rebels' silver, thorn-sharp claws glinted in the sun, and their razor-edged fangs gleamed. Their eyes were blazing with hate and determination as they strode forward. Three cats dispersed from the ranks of Rebels and stalked up until they were face-to-face with Star.

"We Rebels will rid of you forever, Star," a huge silver she-cat hissed, her long, curved claws sinking into the earth like it was water.

"Yes," a lithe black tom mewed quietly, his calm voice full of authourity, demanding the attention of even Star's cats, "Star and the cats that followed him will be wiped off the face of the earth. Today."

The sleek black tom turned and nodded to the burnished red tom beside him.

"Attack!" the red tom yowled.

The first rank of Rebels shot forward, blurs of tooth and claw among the followers of Star. They fought like whirlwinds through the endless rows of foes. Then the second and third ranks joined the fray, pushing through the unorganized chains of foes. The last ranks followed in, and fought on. Though the Rebels were fighting unusually well for cats that were so well outnumbered, it was obvious who would win: Star.

The lithe black tom that had spoken to Star earlier, Nightstorm, leader of the Rebels, signaled with a flick of his tail to Ragefire, the burnished red tom that had yowled to attack.

"Disperse!" Ragefire howled , as he leaped into a battle between Wolfclaw and two hostile followers of Star.

Hawkfrost battered at Bronzespot's belly, panting, "What does the fool mean by that?"

The gray and brown she-cat kicked at Hawkfrost's legs fiercely, raking her claws down his sides. Despite her exhaustion, she let on a small smile. "You'll soon find out," she hissed out of clenched teeth, her belly screaming with pain.

Hawkfrost yowled as pain lanced down his sides. The gray tom's icy blue eyes burned with pain and fury as he jumped on Bronzespot's back, and buried his fangs into the she-cat's scruff. Bronzespots let out an ear-splitting screech.

That was when the meaning of Ragefire's command revealed itself. Two lines of cats rippled out of the darkness and started pushing in on Star's Followers from the behind.

"Fox dung!" Hawkfrost swore when he saw what was happening. His bite loosened on Bronzespot's neck as he took stock of the damage done. Bronzespots seized her chance and shook her opponent off. Hawkfrost grabbed Bronzespots by the leg and threw her at the trunk of a tree. He heard the sound of breaking bones. Giving one last hiss at the bronze-spotted she-cat, the former RiverClan deputy shot off in the direction where Star stood, surveying the battle.

But Star wasn't troubled. "We have our own secret weapon," Star meowed in reply to his lieutenant's anxious questions, a demonish smile spreading over his face.

Hawkfrost nodded and cannoned into an even battle between one Rebel and a follower of Star.

It was then that Star's "secret weapon" baraged the Rebels. Twoscore cats rained down out of the trees and began fighting the pressing ranks of Rebels off. The tables were completely turned over. Twoscore was too much for the Rebels to hold. They scattered, then formed a group several feet away from Star's followers.

"We'll get you next time!" the lithe black tom spat, then bounded at the head of the Rebels to give orders.

Star's followers hissed and spat after the Rebels, who responded by hissing and spitting back. The Rebels' claws were stained with blood, but they still gleamed in the setting sun as they turned and fled.

"I still don't understand why they agreed to fight us," Hawkfrost mewed as he watched the Rebels flee.

"I thought I told you to leave it alone," Tigerstar snapped irratably, flicking his ears causually whilst licking blood off his pelt.

"Be quiet!" Star hissed, his eyes intent on where the Rebels were fleeing.

Star's followers waited in silence, watching the Rebels run over the green hills, through the glades and the forests, and finally in the direction of the mountains.

"They're going to the mountains," Hakwfrost meowed finally, swiping a paw over his ear.

"Then we will go there too," Star mewed, then turned away from the Rebels to face Hawkfrost, his deputy. "Tell my cats to get ready for a long journey . We leave at dawn."

Meltingpaw glided foward, paws barely touching the ground. His claws slid out as he neared the oblivious mouse. Meltingpaw's shadow darkened the ground the mouse was foraging on. The mouse froze, then started to scrambled away. The apprentice moved like chain lightning. He shot forward and turned the mouse over, slashing his claws through the mouse's throat.

"Great job!" Icestar purred, as Meltingpaw, satisfied, scraped earth over his mouse. "I'll have to think about arranging your warrior ceremony soon!"

Meltingpaw's chest puffed out in pride. The apprentice had a reputation of being one of the best hunters and fighters in ThunderClan history. He was something of a legend among kits.

"Come on," Icestar mewed. "Let's go check the Tunnels."

The Tunnels, an underground system of tunnels that connected ThunderClan, ShadowClan, RiverClan, and WindClan, had been sealed during the legendary cat Firestar's time, but had recently been reopened during a bad earthquake. Meltingpaw stood shoulder-to-shoulder with his mentor, jaws slightly apart to taste the air.

Without a word, Meltingpaw stole forward, a mere shadow among the ferns. His claws shot forward, scoring a vole's neck. He picked it up and dropped it where he had buried his mouse. Before Icestar could congratulate Meltingpaw on his catch, he mouthed, "Pidgeon!" and stalked off in front of an oak tree.

Meltingpaw crouched, mucles bunched, ready to spring. He crawled forward, until he was a tail-length away from the trunk of the large oak. A pidgeon sat on one of the branches. The ThunderClan apprentice sprang, his strong legs elevating him. The pidgeon squacked and leaped into flight, but Meltingpaw was to quick. His claws shot forward, and he brought down the pidgeon, ripping his teeth through its neck.

The apprentice started padding over to his pile of prey, his eyes bright with the light of triumph, just as Icestar smelled a strange scent, neither prey nor -

"Meltingpaw, wait!" Icestar yowled, but it was too late.

A flame colored tom shot out of the shadows, claws extended. His fangs were bared, his eyes intent on Meltingpaw's throat. Icestar rocketed out of his position by the Tunnels, leaping in front of Meltingpaw. The tom's claws, which were backed up with dog's teeth, ripped through his throat. Blood welled out of the cut, and Icestar's vision blurred. Meltingpaw was yowling for help, just as Icestar's eyes closed, perhaps for the final time...

Icestar opened his eyes, and found himself at the edge of the Moonpool. The shadowy shape of Star strode forward out of the shadows.

"You have lost your first life," Star mewed, his magnificient golden pelt rippling with power, "You shouldn't - "

A misty cloud surrounded the Moonpool, then a burst of golden light flashed. The misty cloud dissolved, and then Star and the Moonpool had disappeared.

Icestar stood up and looked around. A bronze colored rock shone in the middle of the circle that was surrounded with mist, and next to the rock stood Bronzespots, her pelt shimmering under the light of the bronze-colored stone.

"Listen closely to what I have to say, Icestar," Bronzespots meowed, her voice ringing in the little circle of mist, "You must travel across the mountains and raise an army to help us defeat Star. Go to Twolegplace and find the Loner's descedents, as well as the Lost Ones. You must bring them here, then our worlds will come together and we can defeat Star. Then will we finally be free."

"The Loner's descendants? The Lost Ones? - "

"Remember, only you can help us defeat Star..."

Then the bronze rock's glow grew dull, and another flash of golden light filled the room. When the golden light faded away, and Icestar opened his eyes, Bronzespots and the stone had disappeared.

Chapter 4 - The Journey

Icestar paused, his breath coming out in exhausted pants, as he looked across the Clan Territories he had left to travel through. He had already bumped into a ShadowClan patrol, and things would've gone ugly if the leader, Ashstar, hadn't been as reaosonable as she was. He would still have to deal with WindClan, he thought, as he glanced at the barren moors of WindClan territory, and RiverClan still. The long, sinewy river could be seen evern from his position on the edge of ShadowClan territory.

The ThunderClan leader had recovered from losing his first life two days ago. He didn't tell anyone his reason for leaving, not even his deputy, Birchpelt, who he had left in charge, but only told them that StarClan needed him, and that he wouldn't be back for a while. As for Meltingpaw, he had left him with Swiftfur, a logical and dangerous warrior of ThunderClan.

He sort of knew that Meltingpaw had come along. Knowing him, he would've come if his life had depended on it, but who knew? Maybe he, Icestar, had succeeded in what thousands of others had not - instilling some sense into the hyper and rash Meltingpaw.

But it was only dreams. He could smell a trace of Meltingpaw's scent - well hidden among the leafy smells of the woods, but not quite hidden well enough to withstand his nose.

"Meltingpaw," Icestar meowed quietly, half hoping that there would be no response.

Icestar heard, with no surprise, a small rustle among the undrgrowth, and Meltingpaw twisted out of the brambles.

"Meltingpaw! What are you doing here?" Icestar meowed, his eyes narrowed, "You should be at Camp with Swiftfur!"

"It's fine," Meltingpaw mewed stonily, "Swiftfur knew I wouldn't stand being left behind, so he and Birchpelt arranged to let me go."

The ThunderClan apprentice glanced at Icestar, and added, "I know your going to travel to the mountains to kill Star."

Icestar let out a shocked gasp. "H-how did you know?" he stammered, then remembering himself, repeated, "how did you know? Did you follow me to the Moonpool? Did you have the same dream...?"

Meltingpaw ignored his mentor, and meowed, "I'm not leaving, and if you do somehow make me go back to Camp - then you'll never know how I...discovered your mission."

Icestar let out an exasperated sigh. "Must you do this?" he asked, rasing his head slightly, though he knew the invetible answer. having spent so much time with Meltingpaw.

"Yes," Meltingpaw meowed solemnly.

The ThunderClan leader shrugged his shoulders in consent. Besides, its nice to have somebody along...such a blind journey. I need all the help I need. Even though its from an apprentice, he reasoned to himself as Meltingpaw took the sign and, nodding at Icestar, hastened his pace a few steps faster than his leader's well-paced stride.

Icestar watched Meltingpaw, muscular and broad-shouldered, large for any cat his age. His long, matured fangs. His silvery, long claws.

But is he an apprentice?, he backtracked.

Meltingpaw pricked his ears, pausing to taste the air. Giving himself a small nod, he strode along again.

Icestar shook his head. Meltingpaw was only a talented - though rather infallible - loner who had decided Clan life was a good life for him.

But as he again watched Meltingpaw taste the air again, so gracefully disappear into the shadows as he padded on, he couldn't be sure.

Who is he?

Chapter 5 - The Mountains

Star stalked into the cave with his StarClan cats right behind him, and Tigerstar at his side. Dark, muddy cats from around the cave got up and formed a defensive line at the other side of the cave. A small, brown cat came up from behind the line and approached Star and his warriors.

"Clan cat! What are you doing here?! This is Tribe-cat territory!" he spat at Star, and looking the StarClan leader over with contempt, boldly added, "Get out, you mud-smelling flea-ridden exscuse for a cat!"

"Well, Stoneteller. You appear to be recovering from our last meeting," Star meowed smoothly, his voice onimously calm, though his firey blue eyes gave away his flare of anger, "I suppose you haven't forgotten that?"

Stoneteller snorted. "I am a tribe-cat. We of the Tribe of Endless Hunting don't forget...things like that," he replied, narrowing his eyes.

"I'd hoped not. Anyway I believe you know why I am here," Star continued, glancing up at Stoneteller, but the Tribe Healer's face was infuriatingly well-masked with an expression of dreamy dazedness, "a pack of rogue cats - Rebels, we call them - have fled the area to...yours."

Star hesitated in saying 'yours'. He fully well intended in taking over Tribe territory too.

Stoneteller looked at Star with curiousity. Was he looking for his cats because of his responsibility as a leader - he doubted it, looking back at his experiences with the golden-pelted tom - or because he wants control over them?

"They stayed with us - we took them in," Stoneteller mewed cautiously, his paws fidgiting, "and left a sunrise. My Cave-Guards have reported them to be traveling towards the Tribe of Endless Fire's territory."

"They must have thought they could stand a better chance with a more war-like Tribe," Star murmured out of the corner of his mouth to Tigerstar and Hawkfrost, who responded with a tiny nod.

"We can still fight!" Stoneteller hissed, his claws sliding out, and a few yowls of support sounded behind him.

"You can still lose, too," Star meowed back, surprisingly composed, though his voice was edged with a thorn-sharp coldness, "Remind me, didn't you say that you sheltered my enemies for a sunrise?"

"Yes," Stoneteller admitted, "but they were injured, tired, and in need of our hospitality. For isn't lending out our paw for those who need it the purpose of this place?"

"Still, you sheltered my enemies. I don't like that." Star growled, his gaze turning into a piercing glare.

The threat in Star's growl signified play time was over. "Rock, get the Tribe to the Tribe of Endless Fire!" Stoneteller yowled, launching himself at Star.

Star's long claws raked down Stoneteller's belly, then rolling around, leaped onto the Tribe Healer again, wrestling him to the ground, until he had Stoneteller pinned down by the shoulders.

Stonteller glanced nervously over his shoulders. The StarClan cats were well on his Tribe's tails. Knowing that his life was the only thing that could help his Tribe, he slithered out from underneath Star, threw him over with the strength of all his seasoned muscles, and took off in the direction of the Cave of Pointed Stones.

With a screech of fury, Star streaked after his prey, icy blue eyes blazing like white fire. "Stop him!" he yowled to his followers, who, turning around from the Tribe's heels, headed off to get Stoneteller.

The Tribe Healer was caught in a dead end in the Cave of Pointed Stones. Knowing he couldn't win, Stoneteller shot a sneer at Star, and whirling around, plunged into the Tunnels of Despair - just as they tumbled down behind him.

The last thing Stoneteller saw was the icy pool inside the Cave of Pointed Stones. It's clear water reflected images of falling leaves - and a giant mountain lion.

Sharptooth! he immediately recognized.

Then he saw the difference.

No...thats -

The Tribe Healer never finished his thought. The rocks of the Tunnels clashed down, and engulfed in a mountain of heavy clumps of dirt. After one last rock fell down, Teller of the Pointed Stones - Stoneteller - was no more.

Star, spitting contemptously at the remains of the Tunnels of Despair, then with a smugly satisfied flick of his tail, turned his back to the dead Tribe Healer, and face-to-face with the pool in the middle of the Cave of Pointed Stones. He froze, when he saw the new image on the pool's surface. His icy blue eyes were wide with fear.

A frighteningly familiar flame-colored tom sat, battle-scarred and travel-weary, in a far - away, harsh, Twolegplace.

Icestar gawked up at the rocky mountains, so high up even the clouds seemed unusually low in the greenleaf bright blue sky. They had managed to climb halfway to a flat stone-like perch, which was there goal. Already, their pads were split, bloodied, and bruised.

"So far up," Meltingpaw sighed, examining his front paw, which was red with bruises in split in two places. Icestar knew it had to be treated soon or it would be infected - he knew by the blood-red trail his apprentice had left behind - and sent a silent prayer up to StarClan that they would reach the Tribe soon.

Does StarClan even walk these skies?, Icestar wondered, and remembering his dream at the Moonpool, added, do I want StarClan to walk these skies? Especially with Star as their leader?


Meltingpaw's curious and rather worried voice brought the ThunderClan leader back to reality. "Oh - yes?" he stammered, pushing his thoughts about the hostile StarClan "leader" to the back of his mind - where it should be.

"How long do you think its going to be before we reach - " Meltingpaw paused, motioning to the far-away perch that they were pinpointing, "- that place?"

"I don't know," Icestar admitted, and glancing up at his apprentice, added, "don't you know? You've been here before; you should know these mountains pretty well - you do, don't you?"

Meltingpaw's eyes darkened, and a sudden flash of anger crossed his face.

But the flash of fury was gone as suddenly as it had come. "Oh, yes," Meltingpaw meowed, shading his eyes with his paw as he looked up at the flat-stoned peak, "I do know the territory well - after all it's been my home...once."

Icestar gazed at Meltingpaw, curious, but the apprentice turned away, and with a cheerful mew, started to continue up the winding path that seemed to go on forever - all the way to the flat-stoned peak.

He had began to climb after his apprentice, when a long, drawn-out howl rang over the mountain, ringing in the gorges that surrounded it, dispersing into the air.

"Wolves," Meltingpaw explained, his voice and expression grim, "we might run into the pack that makes their den here in Greenleaf. If we do then..."

"We die," Icestar finished.

Meltingpaw nodded, glancing down at his long, hooked claws, which had unintentionally been unsheathed. Even you two don't stand a chance again those wolves, he thought almost angrily,

Chapter 6 - Mountain Wolves

"Sir, there are intruders coming to the borderline," Garth reported, weaving through the scattered lichen that littered the den floor.

Tao stared at his paws, refusing to move.

"Sir!" Garth hissed sharply, "I just said there are intruders coming to the borderline."

"Intruders...borderline...Vedra, Vedra, Vedra," Tao mumbled to himself, "Vedra...Intruders...Borderline..." Shaking his head repeatedly, he threw his pebbles and shells on the floor in sudden fury and whipped around, bounding to his trampled nest. He circled around two, three times, then went stampeding straight for the wall. Just before he crashed straight into the sturdy stone, he froze; then he just stood, staring at the blank cave wall.

Renn crept silently inside, pausing by Garth's side. "What happened?" she asked softly.

"I swear, Renn, he's losing his mind," Garth shook his head, "I don't understand why the pack insists on keeping him alpha. He doesn't even do anything anymore. ...Well, unless you count him playing with those pebbles and shells as if he was the Teller." "Cut him some slack," Renn nudged the male's shoulder disapprovingly, "He hasn't been the same since Vedra died. That doesn't give you space to make fun of him, though."

- Sorry, sorry, this isn't the end of the chapter, but I've gotta run. >.< Thanks for all the nice comments, bye~ Also, whoever originally created it, I'm sorry, I've completely changed the plot. If you come back, you're free to erase my changes. -