You could’ve been great.

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    Hawkbite was up early with the sun, a time when meager strips of mist encircled each threshold. When he walked across the camp his footfalls stirred them. His amber eyes were locked upon Kass, the only other cat who was ever up quite this early.


    The black tom moved with purpose. It had been quite some time since they’d spoken- apart from a curt greeting when he’d arrived back home to the shock of many with his three newborn kits. For some reason, he was not sure why, he was surprised Kass hadn’t so much batted an eye or thought to visit them. Then again, he supposed she was not overly fond of children. Most cats were endeared only to their own, at the end of the day.


    “Hey Kass.” He said shortly, but in a respectful tone. “Wanted to speak to you about something.” And with that  he seated himself and pressed on once those words had had time to sink in.


    “It’s about Silverpaw, your new apprentice. I was out with him the other day when you were busy, he’s quite smart but…” His words trailed off, arranging themselves as not to sound disrespectful. “I gathered that he was struggling a bit. Now, I know from personal experience how hard you run things and it’s honestly not all that bad. But Silverpaw’s just…..well, he’s not me, I suppose. He’s going to respond differently to certain things, and I just worry the same tactics might be harder on him. He’s Clanborn, after all. He hasn’t known the hardships of the city.”


    “I’m not telling you what to do- stars above, as if anyone could. But I just wanted to offer my two whiskers here.”


    The ThunderClan deputy had awoken suddenly with the same slight headache that had plagued her for days. It was allergies, she’d been told by Peachblossom who obviously hadn’t taken the time to really be concerned about the matter when the ex-rogue had said something unsavory upon entering about moving back in. It was just so easy to rile the young molly up, and when she was angry or annoyed it was her favorite past-time. It was funny how life was, how her relationship with Snarlingbadger had gotten so much stronger but her relationship with Hollystar had felt like a thorn in her side, wounds still not quite healed from the battle. She wasn’t ignoring her mate, but if she slept in the medicine cat den and refused to make eye-contact it was only because she refused to see how easily she was being played. 

    And so she rose with the sun as she always had, letting the early morning rays warm her pelt while she took her time waking up. She remembered a time, away from the clans, where she would practice sleep attacks on her brother in the early mornings. Rile Sebastian up and earn a licking in turn from their den mother. A playful time, youth so young the young unnamed kitten didn’t think anything of wars or religion. She was brought out of the memory by the sudden appearance of Hawkbite, her former apprentice. 

    All business it seemed, the two never had much warmth but there was something missing in his tone she couldn’t quite place. “Hawkbite,” the she-cat mewed skeptically, “Nice to see you too- Oh me? I’m doing just fine, head just hurts. How’s your morning going? Good? That’s good.” she sassed, answering unasked questions her apprentice hadn’t asked dryly. Her bi-colored eyes moved to look at him in the eye, unimpressed. “Oh really? Well, I’m pretty busy here as you can see.” she mused when in fact she’d been doing absolutely nothing prior. 

    Ah, her apprentice moved on, a smart move all things considered. He mentioned her new apprentice, the little silver cub who asked all the silly questions. Her ears twitched in recognition, listening to him drone on and on about how her apprentice- her current apprentice, was struggling. That he couldn’t handle her training because he wasn’t the same tom Hawkbite is- as if she didn’t know that. When he finished she barked out a laugh, loud and absurd. “Your two whiskers? Tell me Hawkbite, what do you know about training apprentices? Do you presume I don’t know my own apprentice? I laid out the terms of my mentorship very clearly when I began with him. He knows what I expect from him and he delivers. If he wants out or wants someone else, he’s more than welcome to ask.” 

    The lunacy of the accusation that she couldn’t train Silverpaw properly, she scoffed, rolling her eyes and turning her body away from him. Drama, she could do drama. Egg for the right reaction- maybe for once he’d wake up and see the full picture of what’s in front of him instead of brood through it. “Although I suppose since you think he can’t handle it I might as well give him up, right? Since you gathered? The boy knows how to speak up just fine, if there was a problem he would tell me. Did he say anything of that matter to you?” She asks the black tom. She shook her head, “Every apprentice is different sure, but we need the same outcomes. My regiment with him is completely different than with you, the lessons are different, my method is different. I know Silverpaw, I know his limits. I don’t go past them.”

    “Really Hawkbite, it’s not flattering to be jealous of someone half your age. I’m well aware he isn’t you, he’s too driven, too eager.” 


    Her vitriolic words might as well have been a slash across his face. Features twisting back in irritation. His white teeth, a clear sign of his youth, caught the early rays of the sun and glinted like ivory. Despite the harsh journey he’d recently been on, a decent amount of muscle still clung to his frame. Though he was nowhere near Kass’s weight class.

    His exhaustion was certainly a factor in how quickly he flared to her tone.


    “StarClan’s nethers Kass! Did you miss the part where I said I’m not telling you what to do?” Snapped the slim black Warrior, his back arching slightly. Thankfully with the camp close to deserted, few were roused by the signs of aggression sparking up between Deputy and former Apprentice.


    ”I was just saying what I saw. You taught me to think for myself- so here’s me doing it. You don’t get to decide I’m being an idiot just ‘cause you don’t like what’s in my head.” Hawkbite huffed, calming himself a bit. Arguing would accomplish little. But he’d forgotten just how anal his old teacher could be, even at the best of times.


    “Me? Jealous of a kitten? Hardly.” He laughed. “Use whatever excuse you want, Kass. We both know who’s lying and who’s telling the truth here.”

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Forums ThunderClan ThunderClan Camp You could’ve been great.