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The Signs of Trouble

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Essay
This page contains a fan fiction written by Forestpaw13.
This page contains the opinions of the original author(s), and is not patrolled for factual accuracy.
Remember that this story is non-canon. It may contain false characters, plots, or locations.
Responses, comments & other feedback should be made on the Talk Page.

Author's Note

  • Heyo, peeps! It's Forestpaw here, with the fifth book in the Transformer series! Are you caught up? If so, keep reading! If not, DO SO!
  • Thanks.
  • Okay, so this is in the old forest, where Firestar was apprenticed and stuff.
  • My writing style is forever changing. Read what I said in the fourth book about this...
  • Thanks, guys! Do you like my siggy? Forests are life

Chapter 1

Staring at the cats around me, I realized just how many cats could rebel against me.
At least some would be on my side.
I was sitting at the Gathering, with my apprentice, Snakepaw, at my side. His white fur stood out in the quickly depleting light, whereas my black pelt blended into it. Snakepaw was quivering with excitement; I wondered what he was thinking.
Gorsestar, ThunderClan's leader, stood on top of the Great Rock with the leaders of RiverClan and ShadowClan. Treestar was the leader of RiverClan, while Bigstar commanded ShadowClan.
I remembered the day before, when we had exiled our deputy, Goldfoot. Now our deputy was my father, Brackenclaw. He sat among the cats nearest to the Great Rock.
I turned to Snakepaw. "Do you want to go meet other apprentices from different Clans?" I asked him.
"I can do that?" Snakepaw asked.
"You can."
Snakepaw rushed off.
I turned to Stormwing, a new warrior of ThunderClan. He had a light gray pelt with stormy blue eyes.
"Are there any new warriors in other Clans?" I asked him.
He nodded.
"Who?" I asked him.
"I don't know- I just heard about it." Stormwing looked embarrassed.
Just then, another cat who went by the name of Mistpaw, bolted up to me. She was a RiverClan apprentice, and the daughter of the evil Stonestar. Stonestar had been killed just after I had gotten my warrior name, during my vigil.
I had drowned him in a river.
"Hi, Mistpaw!" I said brightly.
"Hi, Waterheart," Mistpaw replied. "Er, can I talk to you over there?" She pointed with her tail to an empty spot around the outside of the gathered cats.
I nodded. "Of course." I followed her there, and sat down beside her.
Mistpaw hesitated before speaking. "I just wanted to thank you for... er... killing my father. He was a horrible cat, and he needed to go."
"You're thanking me for killing someone?" I asked, surprised.
"You did a good thing, by getting rid of him," Mistpaw comforted me. "Treestar is a much better leader."
I stared at her for a moment.
"Anyway, I just wanted to thank you," Mistpaw mewed. She walked away.
I sat there, stunned for a moment.
I heard a nearby ShadowClan cat complain, "Where's WindClan? We're wasting time here."
I knew who that cat was. It was Snakepaw's ShadowClan mother, Grayheart.
Padding up to her, I mewed, "Hi, Grayheart."
Grayheart hissed at me. "You took Snakekit."
"Snakepaw now, actually. My apprentice."
"Oh, really?" Grayheart purred. Peering over the heads of the other cats, she asked, "Where is he?"
"I don't know."
Suddenly, a ThunderClan cat shot up. "I smell WindClan!" he yowled.
My whiskers twitched with amusement. Runningfoot was always the first to announce things.
An unfamiliar figure stood at the front of the WindClan cats. Where's Mudstar? I asked myself. Is she still recovering?
As the cats were led down the slope, I noticed the cat at the front was walking with a spring in their step- something only a leader could do at a place like this.
The new cat jumped up on the rock, while the WindClan cats dispersed among the others, carefully avoiding coming within a few tail-lengths of me.
The new cat raised their head and yowled, "I am the new WindClan leader, Rushstar!"

Chapter 2

I looked around, confused. I noticed that only the WindClan cats knew what was going on.
I shoved my way through the crowd to hear what the leaders were saying.
I saw Rushstar pad forward and murmur something to Bigstar and Treestar.
"What about me?" Gorsestar asked loudly. "I have a right to know, too."
"You don't have a right to know," Rushstar replied, growling. "Your Clan killed Mudstar."
Gorsestar's voice rose to a wail. "But Mudstar was my sister!"
The cats gasped, and whispers started to echo around in the silence. Most cats couldn't speak, let alone think, but some cats started whispering about how it would effect the Clans.
It probably wouldn't.
I stood up. "That doesn't effect who Mudstar or Gorsestar is. Just because they're kin doesn't mean anything. They both found a Clan that they could be loyal to, and they both knew that the Clan came first. It's no big deal."
I sat down, surprised with myself.
"Anyway," Rushstar mewed loudly, "nothing else has happened between this time and the last Gathering, so... would Gorsestar like to speak?"
There were some hisses from ShadowClan cats as Gorsestar stepped forward. "We have two new warriors, Waterheart and Stormwing. And a new apprentice- Snakepaw."
"From my Clan," Bigstar hissed. Louder, he added, "His sister, Rustlepaw, is an apprentice, too."
I watched as the ShadowClan she-cat - a combination of light brown and fiery orange - stood up. She stared around the clearing, her eyes resting on me for the briefest moment before moving onto Snakepaw.
I suddenly had the feeling that both of us were in danger.

Walking back to camp, I heard a small voice whisper, "Waterheart?"
I turned and saw that Snakepaw was sitting by the river. I walked to him.
"Yes?" I asked.
"What will happen to ThunderClan?"
I knew what Snakepaw was talking about. He was from ShadowClan, and most cats didn't like him as a member of the Clan. Goldfoot had been exiled, and no cat knew where he was. I had the special power to turn into a Twoleg, and now we had just learned that Gorsestar was Mudstar's sister.
"Waterheart?" Snakepaw whispered again. "Can I see you as a Twoleg again?"

Snakepaw waited impatiently for Waterheart's answer. The black cat looked surprised at first, then her face filled with dread.
"I - I don't know, Snakepaw," she stammered. "I just don't know." She walked away.

I quietly slipped into the warrior's den. Most of the warriors were asleep; only Runningfoot was awake.
My nest was next to his, and I quickly laid down and finally felt the warmth of my nest that I had been longing for all day.
Runningfoot lifted his head when my back touched his. "Sorry," I whispered.
"No," Runningfoot mewed quickly. "Keep it. I need the warmth."
The last thing I saw before I fell asleep was his green eyes glowing with happiness.
What will tomorrow bring? I asked myself.

Chapter 3

"Go!" I yowled. "Go!"

Falconfoot, ThunderClan's only elder, raced out of the camp, followed closely by the queens with their kits.

The warriors stayed behind, battling ShadowClan cats.

I tackled Bigstar and he yowled in pain as I scratched him on his exposed belly.

Runningfoot scrambled up to me. "We might not be able to fight them off," he whispered urgently to me. "Should we leave?"

I stared around at the battlefield around me, and then at Bigstar, on the ground.

"I don't think so," I told my deputy. "Keep fighting."

"Thank you, Waterstar!" Runningfoot mewd gratefully. He raced off.

My only kit, Volepaw, was fighting Rustlepaw. I saw Rustlepaw tackle him, and lean in for the killing bite-

I woke up, panting. My fur was fluffed up, and my nest was strewn all over the place. The other warriors were all awake, sitting around the edges of the den.
"You finished yet?" Runningfoot mumbled as he gathered his nest together again.
I felt embarrassed. "It was a dream," I mumbled.
"It sure didn't look like it!" Birdheart, Runningfoot's sister, meowed. "You could have fought all of ShadowClan right then, and you would of won."
Stormwing and Brackenclaw nodded agreement.
Well, they didn't know the truth.
"Is it dawn yet?" I asked loudly.
Even as I asked, I knew the answer. Light was seeping through the branches that made the roof of the warriors den. It wasn't easy to change the subject in a Clan, I had learned. But, I was good at it. I had avoided the fact that I had seen the fight between Gorsestar and Goldfoot that had gotten Goldfoot exiled.
"Yes," Brackenclaw mumbled. "You've kept us up since moonhigh."
"Sorry," I mumbled.
The other warriors stared at me as I left the den.
Outside, my apprentice, Snakepaw, bounded up to me. "Are you going to teach me how to fight?" he asked.
"Do you want me to?" I asked, grabbing a squirrel off the fresh-kill pile.
Snakepaw nodded in excitement as I settled down near Gorsestar's den to eat. I wasn't close, but I still wanted to hear what he was saying to Bearface.
"You have to!" I heard Bearface protest. "Please."
"I'm sorry, I can't." Gorsestar stood up. "You know those could kill a cat, and I do things for the best of my Clan. Feeding her those will not help the Clan."
"That's what you think," Bearface opposed.
"Look, Bearface," Gorsestar continued. "We can't feed a cat deathberries! Especially one of my best warriors!"
Deathberries? I asked myself. I looked at Snakepaw, who seemed to be off in a conversation with Barkpaw, another apprentice.
"You consider Waterheart one of your best warriors?" Bearface asked, hissing. "You're crazy."
I had enough. With a yowl, I leaped at Bearface and knocked him over.
Bearface yowled in surprise.
"I'm not eating deathberries!" I hissed in his ear.
"You should! They're good!" Bearface retorted.
Suddenly, a cat grasped the back of my scruff and I was hauled off of Bearface, who I had scratched badly across one ear.
"You heard?" Gorsestar asked, letting go of my scruff.
"I did," I snarled. "I can't believe he's still a member of ThunderClan. He's challenged your leadership twice-"
"I know," Gorsestar interrupted. "But he doesn't have anywhere to go!"
"What do you mean?" I spat. "He can find Goldfoot!"
Gorsestar winced. "No."
"Then-"
"There's nothing we can do," Gorsestar whispered. "Bearface and Goldfoot would be too powerful together. If they found each other, they could do horrible things to ThunderClan."
I blinked.
"It's best that we keep Bearface here, under control," Gorsestar continued. "That way we can watch him."
I nodded.
Bearface, who was licking his paws to clean his ear, stared at me. "Watch yourself, Waterheart," he hissed. "I can be anywhere now."

Chapter 4

"Leap."
Snakepaw leaped at me, paws out.
I dodged, rolling underneath him and tripping him.
Snakepaw landed with a grunt.
"Now you try," I mewed.
Snakepaw got ready, and I leaped.
I felt him knock my paws out from underneath me, and I hit the ground, panting.
Snakepaw appeared in front of me, purring. "Did I do it right?" he asked.
"You did it perfectly," I replied. Standing up, I added, "Let's do it again."

Birdheart slipped through the forest, scanning the horizon for anything that looked like water.
Spotting it, she raced over.
She noticed the strange smell of the water first. And then the blackish tinge. But she didn't care. She was so thirsty...
She drank it.

As soon as Snakepaw and I arrived in camp, I knew something was wrong. There was a crowd of cats surrounding a small brown shape. Cinderstripe was stuffing yarrow into the cat's mouth with a look of desperation.
I rushed over, beckoning with my tail for Snakepaw to stay where he was.
"What's the matter?" I asked Runningfoot.
"I don't know," Runningfoot wailed. "Birdheart- Birdheart just got back to camp and then she collapsed. She didn't even say anything. Thank StarClan that Cinderstripe was near her."
"Birdheart?" I squeaked. "Birdheart?"
Runningfoot nodded sadly, and sat down heavily. "I don't know what's wrong with her. Not even Cinderstripe does."
I could feel myself shaking. Runningfoot, also shaking, pressed himself against me. It reminded me of the night before. When I had the dream...
Was Birdheart Volepaw? Was her strange condition the killing bite?
I didn't want to know.

Rustlepaw slunk out of the bushes, her coat blending in well to the bracken surrounding her.
She was looking for her brother, Snakepaw, on ThunderClan. She wanted to try and convince him again to live in ShadowClan, with her.
She saw a puddle of water, and she bent down to drink it...

I curled up in my nest and tried to fall asleep. It was hard.
What had happened to Birdheart? Had she done something for the sickness to overcome her? Was she just tired?
There were so many possibilities...

Chapter 5


Birdheart felt a strange sense of nothingness.
She liked it.
Why was she here? She was supposed to go on the sunset patrol.
She told herself, Wake up!
But she couldn't wake up, no matter how hard she tried.
She knew something was wrong. She had been drinking water before she came here, but nothing seemed wrong with it.
Except for the color and the smell.
She had to warn her Clan before it was too late.

I groaned as I got up. Remembering Birdheart, I hissed and walked out of the den.
"What are you so angry about?" Snakepaw asked.
Of course, he was only an apprentice. He wanted to be the best warrior possible.
"Nothing," I mumbled. "Just the fact that I'm on the dawn patrol." And I was.
"Aw, come on! You promised that this morning you would teach me how to fight again!" Snakepaw stared at me, desperation in his bright green eyes.
I sighed. "I'll see what I can do."
As I passed the medicine den to see Gorsestar, I paused and stared at Birdheart, who was inside.
I saw her leg twitch. She was alive.
Gorsestar appeared next to me. "Any signs of life?" he asked me.
"Her leg twitched," I meowed.
Gorsestar looked up at me, pride and happiness in his eyes. "Good."
"Can I replace a cat for tomorrow's dawn patrol?" I asked. "I want to train Snakepaw."
"Why can't he go with you?" Gorsestar asked.
I felt embarrassed.
"He asked for me to teach him battle moves," I explained.
"Cats don't always get what they want," Gorsestar mewed.
"Cats don't always get what they don't want," I retorted. "Besides, Snakepaw's an apprentice."
Gorsestar stared at me. "No," he mewed. "You'll stay on the dawn patrol. Snakepaw, however, will not be coming with you."
"What will he be doing?" I asked.
"That's up to you," Gorsestar replied. He stalked off to talk with Brackenclaw.
I sighed and padded back to Snakepaw.
"Well?"
"He says that I'm still on the dawn patrol."
"Can I come?"
"No." I said.
Snakepaw sighed. "Why not?"
"Gorsestar says that cats don't always get what they want, and you have to learn that."
Snakepaw sighed again. "So, what do I have to do?"
"Check the elders for ticks, and then clear out the bedding."
"Barkpaw is already doing that!" Snakepaw mewed triumphantly.
"Then you can help her," I replied.
Snakepaw let his breath out heavily. "Fine," he hissed.
He stalked away.
With a sigh, I turned to see that I was on a patrol with Runningfoot and his apprentice, Blackpaw. Bearface was approaching the patrol, too.
Growling, I mumbled to Bearface, "Don't you have something else to do?"
"No," Bearface hissed back. Raising his voice, he mewed to the rest of the patrol, "Let's go."
I stared at him. "Fine." And I led the way out of the camp.

Chapter 6

As I climbed up the ravine, I noticed Runningfoot seemed to be looking around cautiously. He seemed intent on keeping quiet, and walked slower then ever.
"Runningfoot," I mewed. "Come on. If anything's wrong, we'll scare it away."
The gray cat looked up at me with a strange look on his face. "And risk losing another warrior? I don't think so."
I heaved a sigh. This patrol was going to take forever.
Rushing forward, I caught up to Barkpaw, who was arguing with Bearface.
"Birdheart isn't faking it, furball!" Barkpaw hissed. "This is real, and you can tell!"
"How?" Bearface growled.
"She hasn't shown any signs of getting up anytime soon," Barkpaw retorted. "Any cat that isn't a mouse-brain can tell."
"You're the mouse-brain," Bearface argued. "You can't tell the difference between faking it and if it's for real."
"Stop," I hissed, unable to take it anymore. "Just- just stop."
The two cats stared at me for awhile, and Bearface asked, "What do you think?"
"I think it's real," I replied.
Bearface hissed, angry.
Runningfoot was quiet behind us, keeping up with us but still moving silently.
"Runningfoot," I mewed, exasperated, "come on, nothing's wrong!"
The warrior sighed, stepped on a stick, and run forward to catch up with the rest of the patrol.
Bearface caught a mouse as we passed Sunningrocks, and ate it without any consideration for the rest of the patrol.
"Bearface," Barkpaw protested, "what about feeding your Clan?"
"The Clan is fed, and my belly was growling," Bearface replied. "Catch your own, if you're hungry."
"We will," I snarled. "Barkpaw, do you want to come with me?" Runningfoot can hunt in absolute silence."
Barkpaw snorted, but Runningfoot turned his head away. "Fine," he mumbled.
I watched as he disappeared through the trees, and then I turned to Barkpaw. "How about by the river?"
She nodded, and I followed her through the forest, calling to Bearface, "Wait here, or go find Runningfoot!"
The brown cat sighed and sat down with his ears pricked.
"I'm thirsty," Barkpaw mewed loudly.
"I am, too," I replied. "We'll drink at the river."
We weaved through the trees, and waited for a RiverClan patrol to pass by when we saw it- a puddle, very close to us.
Barkpaw scampered over, and I followed more slowly.
"The water looks weird," Barkpaw mewed.
I sniffed it. "It's probably got nothing wrong with it," I replied slowly. But I knew it smelled weird.
"Are you sure?" Barkpaw asked.
I nodded. "There's dirt underneath it, see?" That was probably what was causing the smell, too.
Barkpaw nodded, and backed away. "You go first."
I sighed and leaned over to drink it.
As I licked it, I realized something was seriously wrong.
And everything went black.

'End of Book 5

It's not over! Read the final book, Peace or Pandemonium?

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