Hello Readers of the WFW, FireClan here. Welcome to Book 2 of Warriors Flaming Legacies! Please note that it took me a while to type this due to the fact that Internet Explorer sucks and decides to crash when I haven't saved the 4 hours I've taken out of my life to make this. Thanks Microsoft! Anyway, here's the blurb.
In the second addition to Warriors Flaming Legacies, we dive further into Toadleap's journey with the clans. Everything is simply great. More cats have joined, prey is running well, and in all life's just cool. But when a clanmate is mysteriously murdered, Toadleap, with the help of the rest of his clan, must find the culprit and bring justice. Will the murderer be caught? Will the murders continue? And who WAS that strange red cat?
Cats of the ClansLeaders
Toadleap- Dark Brown Tabby Tom with Green Eyes, FireClan Leader
Smokestrike- Black Tom with Amber Eyes, ThunderClan Leader
Aquaeyes- Long-Furred Cream She-Cat with Blue Eyes, ShadowClan Leader
Burstblaze- Ginger Tom with Brown Eyes, RiverClan Leader
Robinwillow- Gray She-Cat with Amber Eyes, WindClan Leader
Titanheart- Pale Tom with Black Stripes, FireClan Deputy
Stormwhisker- Blue-Gray Tom with Amber Eyes, ThunderClan Deputy
Grayspeck- White Tom with Gray Flecks and Yellow Eyes, ShadowClan Deputy
Mudsurf- Brown Tom with Blue Eyes, RiverClan Deputy
Eagleclaw- Mottled Brown Tom with a White Belly and Yellow Eyes, WindClan Deputy
Tawnysoul- Tawny Tabby Tom with Blue Eyes, FireClan Medicine Cat
Starfall- White She-Cat with Green Eyes, ThunderClan Medicne Cat
Rockshine- Dark Gray Tom with Blue Eyes, ShadowClan Medicine Cat
Leafface- Mottled Brown Tom with Green Eyes, RiverClan Medicine Cat
Pumpkinpelt- Ginger She-Cat with Green Eyes, WindClan Medicine Cat
Whitewind- White Tom with Yellow Eyes
Firebird- White Tom with Ginger Spots and Green Eyes
Hammerclaw- Dark Brown Tabby Tom with Amber Eyes
Snowfall- White Tom with Blue Eyes
Olivefur- Brown Tom with Black and White Spots and Brown Eyes
Heavypelt- Plump Gray Tom with a White Muzzle and Yellow Eyes
Gingerstep- Ginger She-Cat with Green Eyes
Fishleap- Mottled Brown Tom with Amber Eyes
Darkwhisker- Black Tom with Green Eyes
Lightningstreak- Bright Ginger Tom with Darker Stripes and Green Eyes
Moonstripe- Silver Tabby She-Cat with Blue Eyes
Ivoryfang- Murky White Tom with Amber Eyes
Flintclaw- Slender Black Tom with Green Eyes and a White Muzzle
Fallenleaf- Ginger Tom with White Patches and Green Eyes
Longleg- Pale Tabby Tom with Long Legs and Green Eyes
Rushfoot- Lithe Brown She-Cat with Stubby Legs and Blue Eyes
Jaystorm- Pale Ginger and White Tabby Tom with Green Eyes
Sparrowblaze- Dark Ginger Tom with Green Eyes
Mallowclaw- Brown and Black Tabby Tom with Pale Blue Eyes
Bluewillow- Balck She-Cat with Blue Eyes
Fogface- Pale Gray Tabby She-Cat with Blue Eyes
Rowanwhisker- Ginger Tom with a White Belly and Green Eyes
Carpheart- Mottled Brown Tom with Blue Eyes
Antpelt- Reddish-Brown Tom with Green Eyes
Tigerstorm- Dark Brown Tabby She-Cat with Amber Eyes
Elmfall- Dark Brown Tabby Tom with Amber Eyes
Blizzardpelt- White She-Cat with Gay Flecks and Ice-Blue Eyes
Featherdust- Pale Gray She-Cat with Amber Eyes
Petalstorm- Dark Cream She-Cat with Green Eyes
Splinterclaw- Brown Tom with Darker Flecks and Green Eyes
Hickoryheart- Tortoiseshell and White She-Cat with Blue Eyes
Smokepool- Dark Gray She-Cat with Amber Eyes
Sootear- Jet-Black Tom with Blue Eyes and a Torn Ear
Turboblaze- Golden Tabby Tom with Amber Eyes
Cloudstorm- Pale Gray and White Tom with Blue Eyes
Chesnutpelt- Pale Brown She-Cat with Black Splotches and Green Eyes
Shrewfur- Reddish-Brown Tabby Tom with Yellow Eyes
Brackenfoot- Golden-Brown Tom with a Single Black Foot and Green Eyes
Diamondstream- Silvery-Gray She-Cat with Very Pale Blue Eyes
Batnose- Small Dark Gray She-Cat with Yellow Eyes
Wolfsong- Pale Black Tom with a Shaggy Pelt and Amber Eyes
Inkfoot- White She-Cat with a Single Black Paw and Leg
Fawnstep- Dark Ginger She-Cat with Blue Eyes
Volewhisker- Small Brown Tom with Green Eyes
Silentclaw- Huge Long-Furred White Tom with Gray and Black Stripes and Blue Eyes
Addertail- White Tom with Large Black Stripes and Amber Eyes
Tangledwhisker- Long-Furred Gray She-Cat with Crooked Whiskers and Blue Eyes
Heatscar- Large Ginger Tom with Scratches Across his Amber Eyes
Dappledleaf- Tortoiseshell and White She-Cat with Green Eyes
Bronzepelt- Tortoiseshell Tom with Amber Eyes
Salmonsplash- Dark Brown Tabby Tom with Blue Eyes
Sparkpelt- Golden Tom with Darker Flecks and Amber Eyes
Rabbitskip- Pale Brown Tom with Dark Blue Eyes
Rookfeather- Dark Blue-Gray Tom with Brown Eyes
Dewstorm- Pale Gray Tom with Blue Eyes
Woodclaw- Brown Tom with Amber Eyes
Venomstrike- Dark Gray Tabby Tom with Blue Eyes
Gearstrike- Silvery-Gray Tom with Amber Eyes
Breezerunner- Pale Gray Tom with Blue Eyes
Thrushfeather- Dark Ginger Tom with a White Chest and Green Eyes
Hawkthorn- Pale Brown Tabby Tom with a White Muzzle and Ice-Blue Eyes
Rubytail- Tortoiseshell She-Cat with a Ginger Tail and Green Eyes
Lionstreak- Golden Tabby Tom with Amber Eyes
Shadowstrike- Black Tom with Green Eyes
Littlefoot- Small White Tom with Black Ears, a Single Black Foot, and Red Eyes
Robinwillow- Gray She-Cat with Amber Eyes, Also Leader of WindClan
Sunnyleaf- Dappled Golden She-Cat with Blue Eyes, Mother of Littlefoot's Kits
Redpoppy- Lithe Ginger She-Cat with Green Eyes, Mother of Salmonsplash's Kits
Gopherpaw- Pale Gray Tom with a White Belly and Brown Eyes, Littlefoot's Apprentice
Thistlepaw- Gray Tom with Amber Eyes, Lightningstreak's Apprentice
Icepaw- Pale Gray She-Cat with Green Eyes, Whitewind's Apprentice
Ravenpaw- Small Black Tom with Amber Eyes, Darkwhisker's Apprentice
Skypaw- Black Tom with Ice-Blue Eyes, Fishleap's Apprentice
Bramblepaw- Dark Brown Tabby She-Cat with Green Eyes, Hammerclaw's Apprentice
Spiderkit- Black She-Kit with Amber Eyes, Daughter of Robinwillow
Crowkit- Dark Gray (Almost Black) Tom with Blue Eyes, Son of Robinwillow
Wrenkit- Dark Brown Tom with Blue Eyes, Son of Robinwillow
Slugkit- Long-Furred Gray She-Kit with Darker Flecks and Blue Eyes, Daughter of Robinwillow
Honeykit- Golden She-Kit with Amber Eyes, Daughter of Sunnyleaf and Littlefoot
Winterkit- White Tom with Blue Eyes, Son of Sunnyleaf and Littlefoot
Soaringkit- Pale Ginger She-Kit with Green Eyes, Son of Redpoppy and Salmonsplash
Burningkit- Ginger Tom with Vibrant Green Eyes, Son of Redpoppy and Salmonsplash
Splashkit- Dark Brown Tabby Tom with Blue Eyes, Son of Redpoppy and Salmonsplash
Cats Outside of Clans
Bugsy- Black Tom with White Spots and Amber Eyes, A Loner
Lily- Bright Ginger She-Cat with White Paws and Green Eyes, A Loner
Rocket- Ginger Kit with Green Eyes, A Loner
Lil' Branch- Pale Brown Tabby Kit with Amber Eyes, A Loner
Mantis- Black She-Kit with Amber Eyes, A Loner
Dagger- Dark Brown Tom with Amber Eyes, Leader of the Rogues
Mace- Ginger Tom with Green Eyes, A Rogue
Emerald- Dark Brown Tabby She-Cat with Bright-Green Eyes, A Rogue
Webster- Pale Gray Tom with Darker Flecks and Amber Eyes, A Rogue
Moss- Dark Gray Tabby Tom with Green Eyes, A Rogue
Stanley- Plump Gray Tabby Tom with Green Eyes, A Rogue
Gunner- Large Tri-colored (Black, Gray, an White) Tom with Brown Eyes, A Rogue
"Red"- Dark Red Tom with a White Chest and Amber Eyes, Classification Unknown
"The new leaders are doing wonderful. You've trained Toadleap well, Thunderstar."
Five cats were sitting around a small pool of water. In the reflection, is the image of five cats crossing a tree-bridge. One of the five cats is swollen with kits.
Thunderstar pointed to the pregnant she-cat. "That she-cat will bring us new kits soon. That's Robinwillow, she was Onestar's apprentice. It's good to have more cats populate the clans."
Onestar faced Thunderstar. "While it is exciting news, we must not forget who the father is. She did a very bad thing."
The five cats frowned. "Yes, it was very wrong." Thunderstar said. "And while she may have done it for love, she has a new mate now and she broke the code. She must forget all affiliations with that cat. But at least she learned from her misktake."
"I hope you're right." Said Onestar. "Do you think we should tell her?"
"No. I think she already knows. But once the kits are born she'll tell him they're his and the past will be behind her. Speaking of the past, we have yet to talk about that strange red cat. Does anyone know who it could be?"
Blackstar faced Thunderstar. "Maybe it really was--"
"We all know it wasn't Oakheart, Blackstar. Could he be a loner? A rogue? Or just a passing kittypet?" Said Firestar.
"It seems as if only time will tell. We must wait."
Toadleap was returning from a hunting patrol with the other four leaders. Before he carried his pheasant to the fresh-kill pile, he noticed Robinwillow was lagging behing greatly. He walked back to her.
"Hey Robinwillow. Need any help?"
"No, Toadleap. I'm fine." She was wheezing as she spoke.
"Are you sure? You're awfully far into your pregnancy. Maybe you should--"
"Toadleap, I said I'm fine!"
Robinwillow ran to the other side of the island toward the nursery, the whole three moons she had been pregnant she refused to go in there.
Toadleap sighed. "Suit yourself." He then put his pheasant on the fresh-kill pile. Heavypelt came up to the pile to talk with him.
"Another pheasant?" The plump tom commented. "Boy howdy, Toadleap. You must have a knack for these things. With you around, Leaf-Bare should be a breeze."
"I wouldn't say that's 100% true." Toadleap watched as the large bird was carred away by the apprentice, Thistlepaw. "I know one thing for sure though, Thistlepaw won't go hungry."
"That's an understatement. The boy could eat a horse and still be hungry! I'd be surprised if he shared any of that pheasant with the other apprentices."
"Well, he did."
Toadleap turned to see the silver warrior, Moonstripe. She was one of the newer editions to the clan and Thislepaw's, Gopherpaw's, and Icepaw's mother. Though she and her kits had only been in the clan for a moon, they were settling in nicely.
"You're right, Heavypelt." Said Moonstripe. "He wouldn't have shared if I hadn't made him."
Before Toadleap could reply any further, Robinwillow's deputy and mate, Eagleclaw came up to him, inturrupting the conversation.
"Hey, Toadleap. You got a moment?"
"Yeah, sure." Toadleap strayed away from the other cats. "What's up?"
"It's Robinwillow. She rufuses to just settle down and wait for the kits to be born. She's only got about a week."
"So... This concerns me why?"
"You're one of her best friends, so if it's not too much trouble, could you maybe try to get her to take it easy a bit?"
"Emphasis on TRY."
After a few minutes of searching, Toadleap found the pregnant she-cat about to cross the bridge to the territories. Toadleap managed to catch up with her.
"Hey, Robinwillow." He mewed. "Where ya' going?"
"Out for a walk. Why? You got a problem with that?"
"No. But, mind if I come?"
"Go ahead. It gives me someone to talk to. Let's go."
Toadleap along with Robinwillow began to walk around the territories. The gray she-cat stayed almost silent the whole walk. Toadleap feared for her safety as she was straying into parts of territories the clan was yet to search and mark with borders. Once in uncharted ThunderClan territory, she began to speak.
"Hey, Toadleap. I'm really sorry for snapping at you earlier. I didn't mean it."
"I know you didn't. It's fine."
"It's just... I've got something I need off my chest. I'm going to tell you but you must promise to share it with no one else."
"Lay it on me. Your secret'll be safe."
"It's about the kits, they- OUMPH!" Robinwillow recoiled a bit and stumbled as she got up from the ground.
"Great StarClan! Are you alright, Robinwillow?"
"Yes, I'm fine. Just a little indigestion. I've been having it all morning."
"Really? Are you sure it isn't a contraction?"
"No... No it's far too early for that. Pumpkinpelt says I should be right on schedule if not late. I was in my own mother so long I came out with a gray muzzle."
"You're a gray she-cat. You've had a gray muzzle since you were born."
"Exactly, hehehehe." Robinwillow tried to giggle, but Toadleap could see she was obviously in pain. Before he could say anything Robinwillow rushed over to a nearby stream and began to drink fiercely.
"Robin, I really think you should rest for a minute."
"No, I'm fi--" Robinwillow as cut off by another spasm of pain. This time she was knocked to her back and realized what was happening.
"Toadleap! The kits are coming!"
"I thought Pumpkinpelt said you had more time!"
"He must have been wrong! They're coming NOW!"
"Hold on, I'll go get Tawnysoul!"
"No! There's now time! You need to deliver these kits now!"
"Okay... Erm... I'll try."
As Toadleap was beginning the procedure, a familiar harsh tang hit his nose. He almost fainted when he realized what he was smelling.
"Great StarClan... Robinwillow! I don't want to rush you or anything, but I think foxes are coming, so pop these things out quickly!"
"Very soothing." Robinwillow's expression was a mix of humor and fear.
When the next contraction came, Toadleap told Robinwillow to push. She did, aand two toms slid out. As Toadleap was licking them, two she-kits popped out, Robinwillow began licking those. The scent of fox grew larger and larger until Toadleap could see it's red jaws pop out from the undergrowth.
Toadleap helped Robinwillow to her feet and put the four kits on his back. "Come on!" He said. "I won't let these kits' first memory be a fox!"
Toadleap and Robinwillow raced through the trees at breakneck speed. The two cats could hear the snarling and hot breath of the fox on his tail. Once he returned to camp, without hesitation, he jumped onto the Great Oak.
"Cats of the Clans! Foxes are approaching! This is not a drill! Get the apprentices, Robinwillow and the kits to the nursery! Titanheart and Hammerclaw, we will block the tree-bridge and fight off any fox that tries to get through to the island!"
The three cats stood at the end of the tree-bridge waiting for the foxes. After a few minutes, they still weren't there. Titanheart tilted his head.
"That's odd. They should be here by now."
"Maybe they lost the scent." Hammerclaw commented.
"No, the scent of blood is too strong for them to lose the trail. It's possible they just gave up chase."
"Toadleap! Toadleap!" Eagleclaw ran faster toward Toadleap than he had ever seen. "One of the kits is missing!"
"Great StarClan." Toadleap realized the foxes weren't lost. They were preoccupied. "Titanheart! We need to find that kit! Eagleclaw and Hammerclaw, continue to guard the bridge."
Toadleap and his deputy ran through the trees, hoping to catch the scent of either a fox or a kit. They did. They arrived at the scene nearly too late. There were about four foxes surrounding the tiny black she-kit. The kit was just sitting on her rear-end staring at the fox facing her, obviously not knowing the danger she was in. The largest fox nearly put his snout on the kits forehead, took a single sniff, and began to whimper. The red creature looked geniunely frightened. It barked some order to the other foxes, and they all ran off with their tails between their legs. The kit was virtually untouched, despite the several patches of dirt on her pelt.
Toadleap just sat there with his mouth hung open. "Di-Did that just happen? What even was that?"
"I dunno, but let's consider it dumb luck. Now lets get her back to camp."
Once back at camp, Toadleap carried the kit to the nursery, where he told Eagleclaw and Robinwillow the story about the fox.
"Wow, that's spectacular." Said Eagleclaw.
"I've never seen anything scare off a fox before."
"Yeah, they nip the things on the noses and they run right off. Scares 'em half to death."
"Well, we've been thinking about names for the kits. How about we name this one Spiderkit." Toadleap watched Robinwillow snuggle with the black kit. "She's so sweet. We're lucky she's alive."
"What a wonderful name. How about we name the dark gray one Crowkit, for his dark pelt. The brown one, Wrenkit. And the gray she-kit Slugkit."
"Slugkit? That's a bit gross don't you think?"
"Yes, but she's just like her mother then. Gross."
The mates began to laugh. "Alright, Slugkit it is."
After Eagleclaw left the nursery, Toadleap began to question Robinwillow.
"So, what was it that you wanted to tell me?"
"Oh yes, umm... these kits, while Eagleclaw may take care of him, are not Eagleclaw's."
"What? How could you know that?"
"I just know, okay."
"Well, you don't have any real proof he isn't the father. Besides, if it isn't him, who could it be?"
At that moment, Stormwhisker, the ThunderClan deputy, came into the nursery.
"Hey, Robinwillow. How are the kits?"
"They're so precious."
"Yeah, Eagleclaw's a lucky cat. Well, later."
After Stormwhisker left, Robinwillow just stared at Toadleap. He began to figure out what she ment.
"No. No you didn't."
"It's true. These kits are mine and Stormwhisker's."
"How could you! The WindClan leader had kits with the ThunderClan deputy! Can you even comprehend how hard you broke the code?"
"I know. I just couldn't resist. StarClan forgive me, I did it for love!"
"Wow. You need to tell Eagleclaw. If he's going to raise the kits he deserves to know."
"No. Nobody but us should know. Stormwhisker doesn't even know. Please just... leave and keep it a secret."
Toadleap agreed and left the nursery. His mind spun as all the thoughts whirred through his head. He would never be able to speak to Eagleclaw again without studdering like an idiot. He thought maybe talking to the apprentices would clear his attention.
Thistlepaw ran up to Toadleap. "Hi Toadleap!"
"Hey there, children. How's it going?"
"Great! Lightningstreak taught us some new moves! I was a little slower though."
"Because of all that pheasant?"
"Uhhh... I dunno."
Toadleap laughed. While the small gray tom took his mind off of it a little, he needed to talk to another cat. Firebird was the closest.
"How's it going, Firebird?"
"Great, hey, I wanted to speak to you. Smokestrike says I'm doing a lot better in patrols and stuff so I was wondering if I could do the night watch tonight."
"Are you sure you can handle that. No offense, but you're a bit timid. But if you want, go ahead."
"Thank you, Toadleap! I'll do my best!"
It soon became nighttime on the island. Before he went to bed, he was approached by Grayspeck, ShadowClan's deputy.
"Hey, Toadleap. I'm goin' out for a walk. If Aquaeyes worries about me just tell her that."
"Sure thing. Just be careful and don't wander too far."
Toadleap went to bed soon after that. He slept though he had a hard time. In his sleep he just heard, It happens tonight, It happens tonight, It happens tonight. Over and over. He awoke with a jolt at the sound of screaming. The voice was Whitewind's.
"Toadleap, come quick! Grayspeck is dead!"
Toadleap rushed out of his den into the clearing, the entire clan was gathered around the entrance to the island. He pushed his way through several cats to see Grayspeck's white body lying on the bridge. His throat had a clean cut and he was still bleeding.
"Great StarClan. Firebird!"
The white and ginger tom came up to him, obviously terrified. "Y-Yes sir?"
"What happened here? I thought you were on night watch."
"Well, I was. I saw Grayspeck leave for his walk too. But I went to make dirt real quick, I came back and he was just like this." He looked to Whitewind. "I'm so sorry. He would still be alive if not for me."
"Don't blame yourself." Whitewind mumbled through tears. "Blame the culprit. When I find that cat, I'll tear off his pelt and make him eat it!"
Toadleap began to give Whitewind his condolences when Aquaeyes called a clan meeting.
"Cats of the clans. Though Grayspeck only died recently, I must appoint a new deputy before sunrise. ShadowClan's new deputy shall be Silentclaw."
The large gray tom stepped up to the tree. Before Aquaeyes touched nose with him, she spoke once more.
"Whitewind, while this deputy ceremony may have been a little rushed, Grayspeck will never be forgotten by ShadowClan. He will be remembered as the first deputy of the new ShadowClan."
"Thank you, Aquaeyes. That means a lot."
As Aquaeyes touched noses with Silentclaw, Toadleap's old apprentice, Lionstreak came up to him.
"Man," The golden tom said. "I know this isn't the time for jokes, but ShadowClan's lookin' pretty fierce. Silentclaw might as well appoint a badger as his deputy."
Toadleap realized how much he was right. Silentclaw was a large and frightening cat. And their medicine cat, Rockshine, had a bit of a rough exterior. But if you got through that Silentclaw was very kind and Rockshine was incredibly skilled. ShadowClan would get back on their feet in no time.
Titanheart came up to him. "Man, the first death in the new clans. Where should be bury him tomorrow?"
"I was thinking ShadowClan camp. I know we haven't set up base in the camps yet but he derserves to be resting with the rest of his clan, old and new."
Grayspeck was covered with rosemary and set out in the clearing for vigil. Whitewind, Firebird, Aquaeyes, and Silentclaw sat down next to him. As he watched Whitewind go into another bawling fit, he was approached by the warrior, Shrewfur.
"Poor Whitewind." He said. "What kind of cat would just murder another one of his kind for no reason? As far as we know, Grayspeck didn't do anything wrong."
"Well, as far we know, he could have done something wrong. Without him here to question, it'll be an unsolved mystery."
"Y'know, maybe the culprit was that red cat you saw all those moons ago. Maybe he felt threatened and attacked."
"The red cat followed Grayspeck back to camp, where there are tons of warriors for back-up, to attack? That doesn't make much sense."
"Well, perhaps we could find the culprit."
"We search the territories and the twolegplace for some shady cats and question 'em."
Whitewind sat up from Grayspeck's body. "I'm in. The sooner I find the cat who killed my brother, the sooner my claws get bloody. I know it's not my call, but if you're going to look for a culprit, you have to bring me."
"Alright. I know you're dying to get revenge. But until we get clear evidence, you won't unsheath your claws a single time. I agree. We must bring justice to Grayspeck. We can go to the twolegplace tomorrow, but for now, you, me and Shrewfur will patrol the territories. I know it's late, but we will avenge your brother. You take the lead, Whitewind."
"Alright, let's go."
Toadleap walked across the border of RiverClan territory with Shrewfur and Whitewind. They had yet to find even a trace of a cat in the other territories.
Toadleap grew annoyed. "Great StarClan! Not even a single tuft of hair from another cat. Are you sure we've gone the right way?"
"I think so." Whitewind looked to his right and grew wide-eyed.
Toadleap did the same thing. To the right were two cats, a she-cat and a tom. Toadleap, Shrewfur, and Whitewind crouched behind them and prepared to attack. The tom turned and Toadleap pounced. The two cats didn't fight back, the tom simply grabbed Toadleap by the scruff and threw him off.
"How dare you!" Snarled the tom. "I know wildcats are savages but I didn't think they would attack a nursing kit-mother!"
"Kit-mother?" Toadleap realized the tom meant a queen. The she-cat moved to reveal three tiny kits, each with the same scared look on it's face.
"Great StarClan. We didn't know. We're so sorry."
"You had better you Foxhearts!"
"Wait! Please let us make it up to you!" Toadleap had to think of something to give these cats. "How about you come with us to our camp, we can provide you with food and shelter for the season."
"Hold on." Shrewfur said. "Mind if I speak with you two?"
"Sure." Toadleap and Whitewind huddled up with Shrewfur.
"Are you serious, Toadleap? We're just gonna let some strangers into camp and feed them?"
"Come on, Shrewfur. It's the least we could do. We could've killed that queen and those kits for StarClan's sake! Plus, they must know the area. They could tell us about Red."
"That's what I dubbed the strange red cat. I figured we should give him a name."
"A name? He isn't a pet, Toadleap. But your right. In that case, they should come to camp."
After convincing the five cats that they meant no harm, they began to trek back to the island. Toadleap began to try some small talk with the tom.
"So, what's your name?"
"Does it matter." The tom kept a stony look on his face.
"If your going to live in our camp and eat our food, then yes." Toadleap could tell Shrewfur was annoyed by the tom's attitude.
"It's Bugsy. My mate's Lily."
"And your kits?"
Lily nudged her kits forward. "Go on." She said. "Introduce yourselves."
The brown kit stepped up first. "Hi! My brother and sister's names are Rocket and Mantis. And my name's Lil' Branch."
Lily looked to Toadleap. "We're very original."
"That I can see. Well, hello kits. My name is Toadleap, and this is Shrewfur and Whitewind."
"Huh." Said Lil' Branch. "You guys have weird names."
"You're name is Lil' Branch. I'm not sure you have much room to talk."
Rocket laughed. "He told you, Branchie. Hey, are we almost at that island?"
"Yep," Said Whitewind. "In fact, it's just ahead of us."
"Awesome!" Rocket's eyes nearly exploded with excitement. "Race you guys there!" Toadleap watched as Rocket took off across the tree-bridge. He knew the kit would lose his balance, so he sprinted over to him and grabbed his scruff in his jaws. Rocket squealed as Toadleap picked him up.
"What are you doing?" Lily screeched. "You're hurting him!"
Shrewfur once again argued with the loners. "Would you rather your kit get grabbed by the scruff or him fall off the tree-bridge into the lake?"
"Shrewfur! Drop it! He's fine. Now let's just get to the island."
"Who are they?"
Toadleap padded into the camp with his patrol and the outsiders. Sunnyleaf, A warrior turned queen, was sitting at the entrance, playing with Spiderkit and Wrenkit.
"Oh, these are some loners we met on the patrol. They'll be staying with us for a while."
"Oh. How about I show the She-Cat to the Nursery. Her kits can play with Spiderkit and Wrenkit if they'd like."
"Alright." Toadleap was happy to see the loners and the clan cats cooperating. "Shrewfur, introduce Bugsy to the senior warriors and set him up a nest. I'll introduce the kits."
Spiderkit raced up to Rocket and began sniffing him. "You smell weird." She said.
"You do too."
"Whatever. Hey Rocketkit, want me to show you the camp?"
"Hold on kid." Toadleap hadn't noticed Bugsy creep up behind him. "He's not Rocketkit. We aren't part of this clan."
"We aren't?" Lil' Branch asked. "Then why did we even come here?"
"You five are always welcome to join, you know." Toadleap tried to convince Bugsy.
"Yeah, Daddy. Pleeeeeease?" Mantis gazed up ather Bugsy with wide eyes.
"Well, maybe. If Toadleap will let us."
"Certainly. We can start the naming ceremony at once."
"Let all cats old enough to leave camp join under the Great Oak for a clan meeting!"
It had been only a few hours since Bugsy and his family had been introduced to the camp. Despite them being loners, they were fitting in nicely. In a matter of minutes, Rocket, Lil' Branch, and Mantis were play fighting with Slugkit and Wrenkit.
"As most of you know, five loners have entered our camp today. We have decided to welcome them into our clan as full warriors. Bugsy, would you and Lily come up here?"
Bugsy guided Lily from the Nursery to the foot of the Great Oak.
"Do you two promise to uphold the warrior code and protect your new clan, even at the cost of your own life?"
"Then by the power of StarClan, I give you your clan names. Your names will be Bugstrike and Lilywhisker, your mentors will be Ivoryfang and Flintclaw. Your kits will also recieve new names. Their names will be Mantiskit, Rocketkit, and Branchkit. Congratulations."
"Thank you, Toadleap." Lilywhisker began tearing up. "It warms my heart to see you all welcome my family with welcome arms. It's amazing that nobody questioned us when we first arrived."
"Yes. We don't normally... ask... questions." Toadleap had completely forgotten to question Bugstrike about the red cat.
"Hey, Bugstrike, can I talk to you for a second, alone?"
Toadleap, along with Shrewfur and Whitewind, managed to get Bugstrike down in a part of camp isolated from the rest of the cats. Toadleap let Whitewind lead the interrogation.
"Go ahead." The white warrior said. "Take a seat, get comfy."
"Um... Okay. So what's up."
"You were a loner in the past, so you move from place to place. Correct?"
"Have you been to the Twolegplace, and if so, do you know any cats there."
"Yes and yes. So why do need this information?"
Toadleap stepped forward. "We have reason to believe that a passing rogue killed Whitewind's brother and the Ex-ShadowClan deputy, Grayspeck. We also believe that he may be stationed in or by our uncharted territories. Our first bet must be in the Twolegplace."
"Yeah. I may know a few cats." Bugstrike sneered. "But it's so hard to think on an empty stomach."
"Shrewfur, go get this cat the fattest rabbit you can find. Chop chop." Whitewind didn't even hesitate.
Shrewfur returned with a god of a rabbit. The thing could make Thistlepaw full. Bugstrike gobbled the rabbit up within minutes.
"Still hungry." The black tom said. "Y'know, I think I'm in the mood for pheasant."
Toadleap would have told Bugstrike off, but he knew how much this meant to Whitewind, so he went out and found Bugstrike a pheasant. After he ate that, he demanded more. Bugstike had eaten so much fresh-kill, his stomach distended, something that would not even happen to a clan leader.
"Oh, no more. No more. I'm stuffed!"
"Okay. Since your stuffed, you could tell us about the Twolegplace rogues."
"Yeah, about that, I don't really know the Twolegplace cats."
"WHAT?" Shrewfur pounced on Bugstrike. "DO YOU KNOW HOW MUCH FOOD WE WASTED ON YOU?"
Toadleap tried to intercept. "Shrewfur, don't..."
"NO! STAY OUT OF THIS TOADLEAP! I'M GONNA KILL THIS FOXHEART!"
"Wait!" Bugstrike managed to gurgle out some words. "Please... let me go, I can... take you to the... the cats!"
Shrewfur took his paw off of Bugstrike's neck. "I thought you didn't know them."
"I don't know them personally, but I know who they are and where they're stationed at. I can and will take you to them."
Toadleap nudged Shrewfur. "Let him go, Shrewfur. He's the only lead we got." He looked to Bugstrike. "Take us to those cats, or next time I won't stop him."
Bugstrike led Toadleap, Shrewfur, and Whitewind through the Twolegplace to an alley.
Toadleap caught up with Bugstrike. "So, who are these cats?"
"They're a well know gang of rogues who steal food from other cats. That's how they survive."
"So, what do we do when we find these cats?"
"I suggest you all prepare for a fight. Their leader is too proud to just give in, he's gonna fight for his territory."
"We were prepared anyway."
Bugstrike led Toadleap and the other Clan Cats to an alley in the Twolegplace. Garbage was laying everywhere and it smelled of crowfood. A small pack of rats scurried across the ground.
"Uhh." Said Toadleap. "Are you sure cats live here."
"I know it don't look like it. But these cats are used to living in pretty bad conditions. Their leader's name is Dagger. He thinks that if his cats can't survive in the same conditions as him, they don't deserve to be part of his gang."
"You sure do know an awful lot about these rogues." Shrewfur butted in.
"Well, Dagger's right-hand man, Mace, is Lilywhiskers's brother. We were part of their gang until they kicked us out when Lilywhisker got pregnant. I guess being related to the deputy didn't give any perks."
"Wow. So that's when we found you. Are we almost there?"
Bugstrike stopped. "We are. In fact, we're right in the middle of their camp. Dagger's usually sitting right here."
"Halt!" Two cats, a brown tom and a ginger tom, appeared from behind a garbage can. "Who are you and why are you here?"
"I am Toadleap, Leader of FireClan. We come seeking information on a certain cat that may inhabit this Twolegplace." Toadleap looked tothe brown tom. "You must be Dagger."
"Yeah. And if ya need information on a cat, I can give it to ya. Hmmm... yeah, there's this one shady fella I know. Big red pelt, amber eyes?"
"Yes! That's our cat!"
"Yeah, he lives in a box a few streets down. You better be careful."
"We will. Thank you."
"Heh, good luck."
"That was weird." Shrewfur nudged Toadleap on the side.
"What, that a nice cat helped us out?"
"Well, yeah. He didn't really ask for anything in return, plus his actions were almost nothing like the way Bugstrike depicted them."
"Well, I suppose that's a little odd. But just like with Spiderkit and that fox pack, let's call it dumb luck."
"Hey guys." Bugstrike called from over his shoulder. "We're there."
Toadleap looked ahead to see another alley, this one even messier than Dagger's, but there was indeed a small stack of boxes to one side of a fence. Toadleap signaled Shrewfur to creep up on the pile. They got closer, and closer, and closer. And when they pounced, the boxes crumbled and flattened under their paws.
"There's nobody here!" Shrewfur yelled. He then began to sniff the flattened pile. "Hold on, I don't smell the red tom here. I smell somethin' else. Bugstrike, come check this out!"
As Bugstrike padded over to Shrewfur, Whitewind came up to Toadleap. "I don't get it," The white tom said. "Why would Dagger send us to the wrong location?"
And at that moment, Bugstrike and Shrewfur ran up to the rest of the group. Bugstrike's eyes grew so wide Toadleap could see the white rims.
"Bugstrike? What wrong?"
"Dagger tricked us! We need to get out of here!"
Toadleap and his group turned to run, but was cut off when they ran into the rogue gang.
"Wow." Dagger taunted, "I didn't think a clan cat could be such an idiot. You actually thought we were oing to help you? Ha! We've seen you clan cats around the Twolegplace recruiting more idiots for you clan. Don't you realize? We don't want you here!" Dagger tried to take a claw swipe at Toadleap.
"Back off, Dagger!" Toadleap yelled. "You may outnumber us, but you could never match the power and might of a warrior!"
"I'd like to try!"
Dagger leaped toward Toadleap and managed to attach himself to his back. Toadleap felt as if his tabby pelt was being ripped off, but he broke through the pain and sent Dagger flying into some trash bags. He then ran over to Bugsrike to help him double-team Mace and another tom. He easily sent them running as well.
"Retreat! Bloodstar's cover aint' worth this!"
Dagger and his gang turned their tails and sprinted out of the clearing. Toadleap's mind began to spin. Bloodstar? What were they talking about?
"You two! Beat it!" Toadleap was snapped back into reality by Whitewind's screech. Still in the clearing was a dark brown she-cat, and a gray tabby tom. The she-cat kept her gaze on Toadleap, even while Whitewind yelled and cursed at her.
"D-Do I know you." She said. Toadleap flinched as she stepped forward and smelled him. "Yeah, you even smell familiar."
Toadleap sniffed her pelt as well. There was something very comforting about it. "Yeah, you do smell a bit familiar, but I don't know where we would've met."
"I dunno either. But you smell a bit lik my kittypet brother, Toad. Do you know eachother."
Toadleap froze. "D-Did you say a kittypet named Toad? I was a kittypet named Toad once!"
"No way! I've finally found my brother! Remember how I used to call you Toad-face?"
"Toad-face! I remember now! Great StarClan I have a sister! I must take you to the island!" Toadleap glanced at the gray tom. "Oh, and your friend as well."
"Thank you for the hospitality." Said the tom. "The name's Moss and she's Emerald. I may not know you, but I'm sure where you're taking us'll be a lot better than being in Dagger's gang. I hope you have room to take us in."
"Of course I will. I'll have you two integrated immediately. Let's go."
"What happened to you?"
Toadleap had entered the camp, only to be greeted by Gingerstep, who was playing with Spiderkit.
"Oh, we had a little run in with some feral cats. Nothing big."
"Nothing big? You've got huge gashes in your shoulders!" Gingerstep looked to the newcomers. "Who's this?"
"This is Emerald and Moss. She and her mate were part of the feral cats until they came with us. Turns out she's my long-lost sister."
"Wow! Hello, welcome to the clan! It's so nice to meet some of Toadleap's family! Come with me I'll show you around."
As the she-cats left, Spiderkit padded over to Moss with wide eyes. "So you attacked my friends?"
"Yeah, sorry about that."
"And you're a bad cat?"
"Well, not anymore."
"Then let's go teach those other bad cats a lesson!" Spiderkit pounced and attached herself to Moss's face. "TELL ME WHERE YOUR LEADER IS!"
Toadleap batted her off with a sheathed paw. "Stop it you! Now go back to the nursery or I'll tell Eagleclaw!"
Spiderkit quickly high-tailed it back to her den. He knew Moss didn't mind but it was no way to treat a stranger.
"So, you and that Gingerstep she-cat mates yet?" Said Moss.
"What? Mates?" Toadleap yelled in disbelief.
"Yeah. Didn't you see how happy she was to meet your sister? If you think she doesn't like you then you're an idiot. I'm sure you'd be nice mates."
"Um... well... it's a bit early for that, I mean we've only known eachother for several moons now. But I cant say I haven't thought about it. She's REALLY pretty."
"Hey, it's not my place to speak, but you could have something good there. And if I need to look out for my mate I might as well look out for her brother. Just think about it." Moss padded away.
Toadleap was puzzled. The topic had come a bit out of nowhere. But thinking about Gingerstep filled his mind with even more happy thoughts than he had when he found out about his sister. He imagined being a mate and having kits with the beautiful ginger she-cat. But it was no time to think about that. He had a naming ceremony to start.
"Let all cats old enough to leave camp gather under the Great Oak for a clan meeting!" Toadleap yowled the usual phrase as cats gathered under his feet. "If fills me with great joy to welcome my long-lost sister and her mate into the clan as full warriors. Emerald, Moss, do you promise to follow the warrior code and protect your adoptive clanmates, even at the cost of your own life?"
"We don't know what that means but yes."
"Then it is with great honor that I give you your warrior names. Emerald, you will be known as Emeraldgaze. Moss, you will be known as Mossfeather. We hope that you embrace your new clan and way of life. Congratulations."
The stir in the clearing eventually subsided, and Emeraldgaze and Mossfeather ha returned to their dens to prepare for vigil. He approached Spiderkit, who had obediently stayed in the nursery.
"Hey, sorry for snapping at you earlier. You should just be more careful with Mossfeather. Anyway, did I miss anything while I was out?"
"Boy did you! Redpoppy and Sunnyleaf kitted!"
"Same day, wow. Now you can pester them instead of me and your siblings. You should go say hi to them."
"Already did. Plus, I like talking to you. Mommy says you're a good friend. You helped her kit me and led the patrol to save me from the foxes."
"Yeah, I guess I am a good OUCH!" Toadleap flinched. "What are you doing?"
"Sorry! Just poking your scars."
"Y'know, maybe you should run along. You're too young to see a heavily scarred warrior."
"Oh, I see scars a lot. My friends are great fighters!"
"Rocketkit and Brachkit actually hurt eachother? I need to tell Lilywhisker!"
"No, not them. My friends from the no-sun forest!"
"Whoops, told too much. Later!" Spiderkit ran off.
"Wait! Spiderkit! Who are these friends?"
The End. (But stay tuned for Book Three, "Blazing Inferno"!)