Shaking Steady Grounds

Born far off in a family of cats in a thick forest nestled in a valley, this short story takes on the view of two cats, Midnight and Trickster, who were both destined for greatness. Though in the wooded glen where they find themselves, they soon find out that they were also destined for divided ways. (Comments, likes, and faves would be greatly appreciated~ Mitchell)

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4. Winter's Cold

The days passed by and winter had finally arrived with its cold breath. The white, glittering snow laid in amongst the entire valley. The snow continued falling and laying so gently to make another layer. Icicles were hanging from the branches and the white clouds had overcast the entire glen. The chills filled the air and, as Trickster predicted, it was another harsh winter. Regardless of everything, the snow did look very beautifully laid. There was yet more to come as well, and the cats needed to stay close to keep warm.

Perhaps the first time in months, this was the closest Trickster had been to Midnight. They were still famously well together, and tears filled both of their eyes out of pure joy. It had been long since they laughed heartily with each other, but even longer since they had been so close. Silver-light smiled while she saw how well the brothers got along after all that time. Even though she was not part of the conversation, she too felt the same happiness that they had. She also knew that this was just what Trickster had needed, something to give him happiness.

A week would be spent indulging themselves in such conversations. However, just like all good things, it would have to come to an end. The elders became frightful because they had seen that their rations were running thin. Though through this harsh winter, it would be foolish to send an entire hunting trip. The risks would be too much for the family of cats. Instead of gaining food, they could lose a whole team of cats.

Gravely the head-elder, who was once a warrior himself, stated, "I come to you with dreadful news my fellow friends. The winter is harsh, and we have run low on our food supplies. The family will not require the warriors to go seek food, but rather, we ask for volunteers to seek for food. A week's journey and nothing more should be enough to suit our needs. As for our wants, they will need to be pushed aside. This is my calling unto thee. Will anyone heed and answer my call?"

The elder's voice echoed down the valley, and it became drastically quiet. It was like you could hear the snow falling. The cats looked toward one another with a shaking fear. Out of the crowd spoke Midnight, "I will go."

Trickster, who was next to Midnight, whispered to him, "Brother, please do not."

Midnight just ignored his brother and began to walk to the elder as he again shouted, "I will go!"

"Then it is settled," The head-elder rose Midnight's paw and declared, "Praise be to your savior. He shall return in a week's time and not a day more."

Once Midnight and Trickster were alone, Trickster tried to reason, "Brother, you must reconsider. The winter is harsh this year, and we have better chances at home."

Midnight smiled and then responded, "I choose not to reconsider, Trickster. The winter may be harsh, but as the elder stated, I will return to you in a week's time and not a day more. This I can promise you." After saying this, Midnight sprinted out to begin his hunting trip.

Silver-light came to Trickster on the hill. She looked at his now frozen tears and said sympathetically, "You should be proud of your brother; he was very brave. And I can tell you right now: he will return to us. I know it hurts to let go sometimes, but don't let go of your heart because you're afraid that you might experience pain."

"You look at us..." Trickster paused briefly then continued, "You look at us as brothers who were born together and shared common likenesses. However, you do not see that we were born to be separated from each other. We may be one in your eyes, but we are far from one in eyes of brothers."

    Nothing that Silver-light could say would cheer Trickster up. A week passed by, and Trickster was still sitting on the hill. He knew that Silver-light was behind him, and so he said in a low-tone, "I knew this would happen. I knew Midnight, my brother, was not to be confused with as a navigator. He may be able to hunt, but still he lacks the skill of navigation. I decided I will go look for him myself."

Silver-light stopped in astonishment and replied, "You won't be alone. I'm coming with you."

"No," Trickster continued, "You aren't. I will go by myself and by myself alone."

"Don't be so irrational Trickster!" Silver-light cried.

"I'm not being irrational."

"Then you'll let me come!" Silver-light tried to sway his mind.

Trickster paused and changed his tone to a condescending one, "Actually, I will not. As your high priest, I demand that you stay and tell the high elder of my departure."

Trickster began to walk away to find his brother. Silver-light just stared as he walked away. He stopped for a moment because he heard Silver-light cry loudly. He wanted to say something, but he couldn't so he went on acting as if he heard nothing. Though quietly he whispered to himself, "This is for your good, my love."

 

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