When the levee breaks.

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    Hawkpaw’s very bones felt stiff as they laboriously made the trek from the place where both he and Chanterellepaw had spent the night out in the woods. There was sure to be talk, but he didn’t give a damn if he were being honest. Coming back to camp would’ve just upset her, and that little den beneath he snow they’d dug had been so warm, and the aroma of her sweet cherry-wood fur overwhelming him…

    One might think after such a night the black-pelted apprentice would be in a good mood, or at least something loosely resembling one. But he wore the same scowl in his face as always, a true testimony to the colloquialism ‘if you keep making that face it’s going to freeze like that’. His broody amber eyes scanned the hollow until it locked upon it’s two targets, wherein it flared like a stoked flame.

    Without giving any signal to Chanterellepaw behind him, he sprang forward bypassing the clumps of concerned muttering cats, to stand before the two Warriors he knew to be her parents. They didn’t look happy to see him, and indeed this was not his first run-in with these poor excuses for progenitors. Not that he was going to let it hinder what he had to say in the slightest.

    YOU!” He practically bellowed, turning many a head in the wee hours of the dawn. “What are you guys doing just sitting here? Your daughter was gone all night after fighting a battle in which one of them died. Weren’t you even worried if she was okay?!”

    Her father Reedtail sneered. “Yes. Don’t think we didn’t know what she was up to with you. We noticed who else missing all night. The shame….” He shook his head. “I hope her brother chooses a better mate, if our bloodline’s to have any hope.”

    To be fair, this was hardly the response Hawkpaw had been expecting. He sputtered like an empty car for a moment before his anger found him again, slipping on like a well-worn glove that fit to his exact shape. “She could’ve died and all you care about is who she shares a nest with?!” Truly his incredulity rivaled his righteous fury, each fighting for room in his words. “You guys are a real piece of work.” He spat venomously.

    “I always thought I had it bad, but at least my parents give a damn about my physical well-being, you can’t even do that! Stars, I don’t know why she cares so much what you think, you’re not worth it. You’re not worth her, she’s wasted on you.”


    Chanterellepaw ~Thunderclan Apprentice 

    She numbly followed behind Hawkpaw, her dull blue eyes flickering up from the snowy ground every once in a while to eye the back of the dark tom as he guides her back to camp. Her cherry brown ears pinning back against her skull as she didn’t want to enter Thunderclan camp. Feeling her muscles stiffen, her breath hitching before she forces herself to keep moving. She was being childish, she needed to get over this fear that was tugging at her heart frantically. Every bone and muscle in her body was telling her to run, but having Hawkpaw with her caused her to swallow her fear and continue onwards. She trusted Hawkpaw, yes at first she couldn’t stand the brooding tom, but under all that anger was someone she trusts full-heartedly.

    Meekly looking around camp, praying that there would be no bodies littering the snow covered ground. The faint metallic scent still clung to the air, but thankfully that was all that lingered from the battle aftermath. Chanterellepaw couldn’t bring herself to glance over at the tree from which Swiftstream fell, the memory too fresh on her mind. Biting her lower lip as she feels curious eyes upon her, it did not register to the young molly as to what many could imply by knowing that both her and Hawk had been gone for the night. To her, he comforted her when she needed it, her best friend was there for her when she desperately needed it. For that she was thankful.

    ‘I just want to go into the apprentice den and sleep’ she thought tiredly to herself. Blinking her tired eyes several times as she felt them getting too droopy for her liking. Jumping in surprise at Hawkpaw’s deep voice thundering through camp, her once tired form taunt with anxiety, fear spiking within her as she sharply looks over at her friend and crush. Frowning as she peeks over his shoulder only for her blue eyes to widen as she spots the irritated forms of her so-called parents. ‘Oh great Starclan…just take me away…’ she miserably thought as she definitely was not in the right state of mind to listen to them lecture her on how her actions affect them.

    If her form hadn’t felt like lead, she would have lunged at Hawkpaw, cover his mouth, and quietly apologize for his rash behavior. Yet; she was frozen, a deer caught in head lights as she lets Hawkpaw’s and her fathers words sink in. Visibly flinching at Reedtail’s implied words, ‘H-how could he think that…? Is that what everyone is thinking?’ She worriedly thought as she risked a panicked look around her. She couldn’t decipher the looks around her and that worried her even more. Her tongue dry, sticking to the roof of her mouth as she fought to speak. To finally express how she was feeling, her stiff posture unchanging but her scared gaze softened at the rugged dark tom a few feet in front of her. Her rapidly beating heart warmed at his words, tears prickling in her eyes as he sticks up for her, his words may have been dripping with venom but he had sparked something within her.

    She is worth it. Rang loudly in her head, Hawkpaw’s words soothed her worrisome thoughts. Finally she was able to move, slowly stepping closer to her friend. Her petite paws making small markings within the patches of untouched snow. Stopping besides Hawkpaw but she doesn’t glance over at him. Her hard gaze locked on the angry scowls of her parents. “I don’t think it’s any concern to you, who I spend my time with” she cooly responds, inwardly she was quaking in anxiety, but was thankful that her voice held firm. “He is my friend whether you like it or not” she firmly adds, her slim tail rattling in anger. She wanted so badly to wittingly add that there was no point in trying to act like parents now when they had never been so before, but refrained from stooping to their level. Chanterellepaw just wished they would leave her alone, to let her finally breath without having to be mindful of their ever watchful glares.


    Hawkpaw felt a massive burst of pride as she rebuked their harsh judgement of him. Sure, he didn’t care what they thought but had she not defended him it would have cut deeply.

    Unfortunately, her petulance only served to further inflame the situation as her fathers hackles raise along with his voice. Drawing the concern of many. for once, Hawkpaw found himself wishing for an authority figure’s presence.

    “It is very much our business with whom you spend your time- romantically or not!” Burst Reedtail. “You will cease associating with this rogue scum or what little hope you had for your talents will surely perish. Now you need to think about this seriously, you’ve got plenty enough stacked in your favor- do you really need this obstacle as well?” Her jerked his head at Hawkpaw who bristled angrily.

    “We’re just thinking of your future Chanterellepaw.” Cherrypatch added. “You know i don’t like seeing you struggle so much. Your brother always heeded us, you would do well to follow in his pawsteps…..erm, to the best of your ability that is.”

    “If you think I’m enough to dash your daughter’s dreams you must have a pretty low opinion of her potential.” Hawkpaw snorted at the both of them.


    Chanterellepaw ~ Thunderclan Apprentice 

    Silence. Tense silence surrounds the clearing after Reedtails outburst and Cherrypatch’s less than subtle jab at her by comparing her to her perfect brother. Clenching her jaw as she eyes her parents, her usual warm and lively cyan and turquoise gaze hardening with hate. She wasn’t sure where this sudden bravery and anger was coming from. Why all of a sudden she wanted to fight back; to give them a piece of her mind. To finally show them how it feels to be talked down too. Maybe it was because she was finally at her breaking point. She was drowning, it felt like she was drowning in a iced pond with no air pocket to escape from. The only source of life and light to Chanterellepaw right now was Hawkpaw. He was there for her when she truly needed someone; he showed her that even if she felt like drowning alone he would be there to not only drown with her, but show her a way to break the ice. To finally breathe once more.

    “The only scum I see here is the both of you” she grits out. Oops so much for not stooping to their level. She felt protective over Hawkpaw; she couldn’t and wouldn’t allow her parents to demean him infront of the whole clan. Sure; he wasn’t born into this clan, but he belonged here just as much as she did or her parents did. Frowning as she worriedly looks over at the black tom. Her blue gaze flickering over his wounded and tired form, but his eyes showed no indication that their words affected him; just defiance. His eyes burning with determination as if he was ready to prove them wrong. “It-“ she pauses, slowly looking away from him to let her gaze fall back to Reedtail and Cherrypatch. “It shouldn’t matter if he is or well was a rogue. He has risked and served Thunderclan just as much and as valiantly as another clan-born feline here” she snaps. Her tone cool and firm, she meant her words and she hoped Hawkpaw didn’t hate that she believed he truly belonged in Thunderclan.

    “You cannot keep me away from him. He is my friend and he is part of this clan as well” Chanterellepaw adds, hoping to get through to her hard-headed parents. “If you cannot handle non-clan borne felines within this clan…maybe you shouldn’t be here” she whispers, but the air around them was so silent that her voice easily carried between them. Ears pinning firmly against her skull as she holds her ground. Chanterellepaw wasn’t just talking about Hawkpaw, but Kass Er well Bluefire as well. Shifting closer to Hawk, letting her short furred cherry brown bengal form brush against his dark obsidian form. She needed to feel him next to her, she needed him to keep her grounded as she confronts her parents. “I know I’m never going to be good enough for you both. I have accepted that, but can you? Can you accept that I am not Rowanclaw and never will be?” Her voice cracks towards the end, her gaze becoming blurry once more as her emotions threaten to tip over.


    Hawkpaw continued to relish in at the sight before him of his closest companion lashing back for once at the cruelty that had clearly plagued her self-image for so long. Tough he had not been present for it’s foundation, even a dense tom like Hawkpaw could tell it had had a massive impact on his friend’s confidence. To see her finally loose the yoke of their expectations felt unspeakably important.

    Yeah! You tell them Chanterellepaw. I can belong here if I want to! He grinned fully, a prick of confusion bloomed in the back of his mind, though. That’s not what I want….is it? But he drove it back. He certainly ought to be afforded the right to want it, if nothing else.

    “Blasphemy.” Breathed Reedtail, looking upon the cat who spoke before him not as his child, but some unnatural being sprouted up from hell itself. “He has clearly corrupted your mind beyond repair. I am sad for you, we had such high hopes.” He shook his head, and walked past them wearily. His mate followed, and the small crowd that had lingered upon the intensely personal family moment awkwardly dispersed, each member doing their best to conceal their ill-intended eavesdropping.

    Damn vultures. Thought Hawkpaw, eying every observer with undisguised judgement. He turned back to his friend, now watching her like she was the only thing there.

    “C’mon Chant, let’s go get you tucked in. After that I’ll go get you some squirrel, I know Graymuzzle is hiding one but I bet he’ll trade it for me doing his ticks tomorrow.” Winked the surly black apprentice. Pressing that revolting mouse-bile on the old fart’s pelt-pests was the last thing he’d voluntarily do under any other circumstances, but a momentous and emotionally draining afternoon like this deserved a sweet reward.

    Allowing her the option of leaning on his shoulder, he led his best friend back to their shared den and to her nest- lined with some fresh feathers- now how had those gotten there? Only StarClan knew such things. They, and perhaps a certain moody young tom…

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Forums ThunderClan ThunderClan Camp When the levee breaks.