Book 1: Warriors: The Shadow Outcast

I am human, or I was. I was fine, and now I'm cursed with insanity. They say I can do great things, but all I've done so far is kill. Sacrifice can only get me so far, and the feeling of exile and outcast isn't new to me. Is this what you wanted StarClan?

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31. Chapter 29

Chapter Twenty-Nine

“Good job, Owlpaw,” said Treeleg, smiling slightly. “Your strength is going to get you far. Just remember that you must use your speed. When going against a strong cat, you’ll need strength to get ahead of him.” Owlpaw nodded, smiling widely.

“Okay, Stormpaw, it’s your turn now,” said Rainfur, standing up a bit proud. Stormpaw sighed a bit before standing up and walking into the clearing. With a small look of disappointment, Rainfur stood up and made his way to Stormpaw, who he’d be battling. For training, of course.

Stormpaw looked bored, which was an expression the annoying tom had on his face a lot. Rainfur narrowed his eyes a bit before crouching into a fighting position, ready to ‘attack’. Stormpaw mimicked this, leaving Rainfur to growl lowly with warning. His apprentice did this on purpose, and he knew it.

Rainfur lunged, keeping his claws sheathed, just in case he got a bit too carried away. Stormpaw noticed this, smirking a bit. Rainfur was confused, but that seemed to be the plan. Stormpaw had slid underneath him, leaving him to gasp in surprise.

Stormpaw unbalanced Rainfur by jumping up. The brown and white apprentice quickly got out of the way before Rainfur fell.

He’s faster than you are, said Jactur, sounding amused. You know, before I trained you.

He is? Rainfur asked, looking very curious. That’s odd.

However, Rainfur couldn’t say any more than that. Like usual, his body got excited when it was doing something that had to do with fighting. Now that it was on the ground, though, it had a different effect. It was making Rainfur angry, something that he just pushed away. It was getting a bit harder though.

“You’re quick,” said Rainfur, a bit of strain in his voice. “But are you strong?” He lunged for Stormpaw, leaving the small apprentice shocked. Rainfur had caught him off-guard, which was precisely what he’d wanted. Soon, Rainfur had Stormpaw pinned, pushing only half of his weight onto him. If he used all of his strength, Stormpaw would probably get hurt.

Stormpaw struggled underneath Rainfur’s weight, but not once showed any sign of strength. This was strange itself, but the fact that his eye colour seemed to lighten frightened Rainfur.

There’s something within Stormpaw, said Jactur suddenly, sounding shocked. Just like you and I, except it’s like an opposite. The power that’s coming from Stormpaw was not created from the bad side of him, but the good side.

Are you saying Stormpaw is the same thing as me? Rainfur asked, keeping Stormpaw down.

I’m still not sure of he’s human or not, Jactur muttered. However, StarClan has meddled with him. I have no idea how they’d make that power though. It’s so confusing.

How do you even know what’s within him? Rainfur asked, very curious now.

It’s like a magnet, Jactur responded. Whatever’s in him is pulling me toward it. It’s like whatever created that is basically the same thing that created me or something like that. Opposites attract, I guess.

Stormpaw just keeps getting weirder and weirder, said Rainfur. Do you think he knows of the power?

Nope, said Jactur. Stormpaw is oblivious. The power still seems to be at its early stages, and it won’t move for awhile unless we find a way to trigger it.

Would it be best to keep it from growing like you did? Rainfur asked curiously.

It’s hard to tell, Jactur responded. To be truthful, I think it would be better to make it grow. Like I said, this power seems to be opposite from me, meaning that instead of it being crazy and insane, it will be strong and kind. So, like Heaven and Hell.

Or StarClan and the Dark Forest, Rainfur muttered. Well, at least I know what to look forward to.

Rainfur let Stormpaw go after that by stepping off of the small apprentice. Owlpaw and Treeleg looked a bit surprised, as did Stormpaw, but Rainfur was used to being stared at, so this didn’t bother him.

“You need to use your strength, as it helps you climb, jump, and even swim,” Rainfur told Stormpaw. “Intelligence and speed helps when you are trying to be stealthy, but you seem to be all speed and no strength. You must balance it out in order to become stronger.”

“Why?” asked Stormpaw. “If you think about it, speed is most important. In hunting, you could catch anything. With intelligence, I don’t need to use my strength, because I could just think of a plan to go around the problem. In fighting, if I use both my speed and my intelligence, I’ll be able to beat anybody.” Rainfur growled lowly for warning.

“But if you meet someone with strength, you won’t stand a chance,” said Rainfur, disagreeing completely. Stormpaw only said those things to make him look stupid. “Which is what I showed you.”

“I have my intelligence,” Stormpaw growled back, smirking. “I know how to tell a fast cat from a strong cat, so I’ll just avoid those who look like they can overpower me.”

“Avoiding a fight is running away from it,” Rainfur told him. “One day of your life, you will need to fight a strong cat, and if you do not have the strength, you will die. Don’t overestimate yourself on your intelligence, either, for that will prove to be your weakness one of these days.” Stormpaw rolled his eyes before letting Featherpaw and Blackpetal train.

Rainfur was looking at Stormpaw the whole time. Not only was the brown and white apprentice getting more and more annoying, he was also challenging Rainfur. It was now turning into a battle between who had the worst life, which wasn’t going to turn out well. He didn’t want to blurt out that he was previously a human, or that he was previously just as irritating.

Then there was the problem of Stormpaw’s power. It was no doubt going to be just the same as Jactur, though in a way, probably better. After all, if it was the opposite of Jactur, then it would no doubt stop the killing, which may or may not be a good thing.

This apprentice is strange, Rainfur thought. No wonder they called him the Odd One. To think he’ll be another cat whom they think as a gift—or curse, though probably a gift after seeing me—from StarClan. He’s too bratty to be a Prophecy cat.

Rainfur’s eyes suddenly widened. Stormpaw couldn’t be the prophecy cat, could he? He was just a mere apprentice, and not to mention the fact he was a loner. He also had a power, one that resembled Rainfur’s. StarClan wouldn’t pick Stormpaw, would they?

It would make sense if they did, Rainfur thought. The Odd One and ‘the Strange One’ sound similar, and he is Unexpected. Plus, look at the moon on his shoulder. Still, with all this, why would they choose Stormpaw? I really need to figure out the second Prophecy, but what was the first one again?

Oh yeah, ‘Blood will be shed as the ashes fall, with memories lost and some forgotten, evil shall over-power even the strongest of the Clans. We wait for the Saviour, and pray that we will be saved’. I have no idea what this means, but if I put Stormpaw in here, it might.

Blood will be shed as the ashes fall’. . .Well, obviously, war is going to break out, but what does ashes have to do anything? It probably means a cat, but it couldn’t be Stormpaw. See, right there. The prophecy cat can’t be Stormpaw. This makes no sense. How am I supposed to find out the Saviour and or prophecy cat by just this prophecy alone? Rainfur sighed, thinking to himself as he watched Featherpaw and Blackpetal train. There was just not enough information for him to figure it out.

I guess I’ll just have to wait.

*

Rainfur led Stormpaw and the rest of his patrol against the RiverClan border, marking it as they went. It was oddly quiet, and the dark grey clouds up above didn’t make it any better. They usually met a RiverClan patrol at this time, and it wasn’t like he was leading a night patrol—it was sunhigh!

There was something else as well, though. In the distance, there was yowling, but Rainfur couldn’t hear it clearly, so it could just be celebrating. But, somewhere within him, he knew something back was happening across RiverClan’s territory.

“Are you going to stare off into RiverClan’s territory forever?” Stormpaw hissed. “We’re getting left behind!” Rainfur looked to his apprentice and narrowed his eyes, warning Stormpaw to stay quiet. The apprentice never listened of course, but that didn’t matter.

“There’s something wrong over there,” Rainfur muttered. “Something that I feel I need to know about. I just can pinpoint it, and it’s really irritating me.”

“I know what you mean,” said Stormpaw, looking off into the distance as well. “It’s a very odd feeling, isn’t it? I just wonder why the other patrol members don’t see it.” Rainfur looked to his apprentice in confusion, very curious as to why Stormpaw could sense it.

“You can feel it?” asked Rainfur. “I thought it was just my power that allowed me to sense it. I always seemed to know when a fight was going to happen.” Stormpaw shrugged.

“I’m a bit. . .different,” Stormpaw muttered. “Lately I’ve been feeling some pull to you, and it’s just strange. I don’t know what it is, or how it happened, but I have a feeling I don’t want to know.” Rainfur smiled a bit.

“I noticed the connection as well,” he told his apprentice. “I don’t think you need to worry about it, though if it gets worse, we might need to figure it out.” Stormpaw gave a small smile before noticing something in the distance. Rainfur looked where his apprentice was looking before gasping slightly.

A dark figure, one that Rainfur knew as Cloudstreak by scent, was running over to them. She looked very scared, and there was blood all over her. Rainfur’s heart quickly began beating faster, and he could feel Jactur stir within him.

“Tawnyfoot! Scorchspot! Sweetclaw! Featherpaw!” Rainfur called to the other patrol members. “Get over here!” He then turned to Cloudstreak, who was gasping with fear as well as trying to regain her breath. She looked very tired, leaving Rainfur to hiss with frustration.

“Cloudstreak, what happened?” asked Rainfur, hoping she’d answer. “It’s okay, you’re safe. Now, what happened?”

“WindClan. . .Attack. . .” she gasped. “Bravestar. . .Life. . .Gone. . .Death. . .Kits. . .” Rainfur hissed again before looking to Featherpaw and Stormpaw.

“One of you has to go and tell Nightstar, now!” Rainfur ordered.

“You’re mouse-brain!” Scorchspot hissed. “Why should we help them? They’re RiverClan!” Rainfur gave a sharp glare to the young Warrior, making Scorchspot take a step back.

“WindClan and ThunderClan have combined each other to give Sharpstar more strength, and the moment they’re trying to gain control of RiverClan,” Rainfur hissed. “If they do, we don’t have a chance. Plus, they’re the only Clan we have left. Other than that, we’re alone. I don’t care if Nightstar disagrees either. I just need back up.” Rainfur turned to Tawnyfoot, smiling a bit as he did.

“Could you get Cloudstreak into a safe place?” he asked. “She needs to rest.”

“I need to fight!” Cloudstreak protested.

“No, you don’t,” Rainfur growled, looked down to her. “If you do, you’ll die, and how would Thunderheart react?” Cloudstreak’s eyes widened for just a moment before standing up and letting Tawnyfoot support her.

“Scorchspot, Sweetclaw, and Stormpaw, follow me,” said Rainfur, turning to the others. “We’ve got to be quick, because these will be WindClan and ThunderClan Warriors.” The three cats nodded before Rainfur sprinted past the border and through RiverClan territory.

It was quiet as they ran, but that’s what Rainfur wanted. The yowls and screams were getting louder, and the sense of knowing something was wrong grew stronger. He was close to the danger, he knew it, but something in his mind told him to stay away.

Stormpaw looked uncomfortable as well, his eyes suddenly narrowing with determination, though unhappiness lay beneath. This made Rainfur even more determined to live through the battle ahead.

When they got to the battle scene, Rainfur found it worse than he’d imagined. It wasn’t at camp like he’d thought. No, instead, it was a full out battle against the two Clans. Every Warrior and apprentice from each Clan seemed to be there, and they were all fighting for their lives.

“Keep a low profile if you can,” Rainfur ordered his patrol. “Do not go for any challenge you can’t take until the other ShadowClan Warriors show up, understood?” The three cats behind him murmured in agreement before they launched into battle.

Rainfur took on an easy tom, battling him swiftly. The tom seemed to be oblivious of who he was fighting, but when he figured it out, he ran, leaving Rainfur to sigh. He was hoping for a real fight.

Rainfur quickly jumped on another cat, though this one was a she-cat, and she seemed to already know who he was. Not that he cared, though. All he wanted was the fighting to stop.

The black she-cat jumped onto him, her eyes narrowed tightly. This cat was familiar, and Rainfur knew it, but he had no time to think about it. The she-cat had him pinned, but she was not the master of strength. Her strength was speed, and Rainfur decided he would use that to his advantage.

Rainfur used some of his strength to push her off of him, sending her to stumble backwards. He stood up quickly, knowing full well that the she-cat would be up quickly.

She wasn’t. She just stood there, staring at him with her sharp amber eyes. It was as if she was studying him, trying to make out what he was doing. It was strange, and Rainfur wanted to know why.

“Why aren’t you using your full strength against me?” asked the black she-cat. “I know you can do better—I’ve seen it. I’ve seen you fight full out, and now that you’ve controlled that power, I bet you can do even better than Rosestar.” Rainfur gasped as he figured out who it was.

Blackpelt, the first deputy he’d met. Blackpelt, the WindClan deputy at one time. Blackpelt, the cat he killed. Blackpelt, the cat he thought to be dead.

“B-Blackpelt?” asked Rainfur, his eyes widened with shock. “I thought I killed you! How can you be alive?”

“You didn’t kill me!” Blackpelt hissed, her eyes narrowing even tighter. “You only wounded me. I pretended to be dead so that you wouldn’t actually kill me. I’ve been in hiding, recovering from your near-fatal attack. I gave up my deputy position so that when the time came for you to return, you wouldn’t know I was alive.” Rainfur tilted his head in confusion.

“Why?” Rainfur asked. “What did I have against you?”

“Nothing,” said Blackpelt. “Yet.” She lunged toward him, her claws unsheathed and her teeth bared. Rainfur tried to evade the attack, but she had caught him off-guard. Blackpelt used more strength to pin him this time, more than he could ever imagine her having.

“Let’s see how strong you are now,” Blackpelt spat, raking her claws across his shoulder, leaving his scar bloody. Rainfur hissed to keep himself from yowling in agony, but quickly used this time to kick Blackpelt off of him. She hissed in fury as she was kicked, leaving Rainfur just enough time to roll away.

Something was happening, something bad. He could feel something draining out of him, like energy after a long day. It was through his scar, which had suddenly turned a grey colour that nobody seemed to notice. Rainfur was confused, but also scared. Why was it doing this?

Jactur! What are you doing? Rainfur asked, looking at the ground with wide eyes. This is just wrong! It’s so strange feeling—what’s happening?

It’s Stormpaw’s power! said Jactur, just as surprised as Rainfur. It’s been triggered by the irritation of your scar!

What do you mean? Rainfur asked. How could that happen?

I was triggered when your scar was scratched, and now that Stormpaw has his power, it’s triggered by that as well! Jactur responded.

My scar has been scratched before, though, and Stormpaw never showed any signs of having powers, Rainfur interrupted. Why is it different now?

Stormpaw’s power has just now become stable enough to be used, Jactur told him. He hasn’t always had it like you did. It must have been something recent that created the power.

Rainfur hissed with frustration, looking over to his apprentice. Unsurprisingly, Stormpaw wasn’t the same. His eyes were white, or at least a very light grey, and the moon on his shoulder had become full, just like at the gatherings. Something was happening to Stormpaw that wasn’t normal.

Rainfur ran over to his apprentice on instinct, trying his best to avoid the battles in his way. He could hear the rest of ShadowClan join the battle, leaving the WindClan cats to be a bit more distracted, which was good. His eyes were glued on Stormpaw, who had now began screaming with fear.

Rainfur got to Stormpaw quickly blocking him from the view of the other cats. To know that Stormpaw was going through the same thing he had was torture, and he felt a need to help the younger tom. It was as if it were his duty.

“Stormpaw, what’s happening?” asked Rainfur, pretending not to know.

“He’s dead. . .He’s gone. . .I’m alone. . .” Stormpaw murmured, his voice wavering as he stared at the ground. Rainfur knew that the small tom was reliving his worst memory, the memory that probably created the power that was growing within him.

“Everything is okay,” Rainfur soothed. “Just fight it, make the memory retreat—”

“He’s gone!” Stormpaw yelled before jumping out of Rainfur’s protection. The small tom ran into the battle again, making Rainfur stand up with fear. He had no idea what Stormpaw was capable of, and he had no intention of finding out.

Rainfur sprinted after Stormpaw, but as Jactur had said, the brown apprentice was quick. He soon found himself in the middle of the battle, having no clue where Stormpaw was. His fear was rising, and even more as heard a cat scream.

Rainfur ran toward the she-cat who’d screamed, finding out seconds later that it had been Rosestar. His heart lurched as he saw Stormpaw on top of the elder leader, his eyes narrowed with determination. Knowing all too well what would happen, Rainfur ran over to the scene and pushed Stormpaw off of Rosestar.

His apprentice hissed in frustration as he did that, but Rainfur didn’t care. He was too busy trying to keep Stormpaw still, but with the power leaking out of him, it was hard. Stormpaw was no longer the same cat, and Rainfur knew this, but it was heart-breaking to know that he was once like this.

“Stormpaw, stop,” Rainfur demanded quietly. “This isn’t like you. This is nothing like you. Stop.”

“But it’s her fault!” Stormpaw screamed. “She’s guilty! She’s attacked innocent cats before!”

“Rosestar has made mistakes, but we all have,” Rainfur growled. “Snap out of it! You weren’t supposed to end up like me!” Stormpaw seemed surprised at this, but quicker than Rainfur could have caught it, Stormpaw kicked his stomach, forcing him to step off.

The small apprentice lunged toward Rosestar again, though this time Rainfur was ready. He got between Rosestar and Stormpaw, forcing the young tom to stop. He narrowed his eyes at Rainfur, his fury building up even higher.

There wasn’t insanity in the tom’s eyes like Rainfur. There wasn’t the desire to kill or hurt. Instead there was justice. There was the determination to hurt the ones who deserved it. It was quite amazing, and very different from what Rainfur had looked like.

“She’s done wrong!” Stormpaw hissed. “She’s deserves to be punished!”

“No, Stormpaw,” Rainfur growled lowly. “I have taken care of Rosestar, so she deserves no more punishment. No one here deserves it, so just lay off. If you want to hurt anybody tonight, you’ll have to get past me.”

Stormpaw hissed with frustration again before lunging toward Rainfur, leaving him to use his strength to counter Stormpaw’s. There was an unimaginable amount of force brought into the fight, but both Stormpaw and Rainfur didn’t care. They were different, and that force didn’t hurt them at all.

Stormpaw let off first, falling to the ground before getting right back up again, though this time just glaring at Rainfur. There seemed to be a sense of knowing in the apprentice’s eyes now, as if Stormpaw had just realised all that had gone wrong in Rainfur’s life. It was scary.

“Murderer. . .” Stormpaw suddenly murmured. “I can’t believe I’ve never saw that. . .killer. . .You must die!” The small apprentice lunged toward Rainfur, but he quickly evaded the attack.

Jactur, can you tell me anything about this power? Rainfur asked curiously. It’s so odd, so strange. . .It’s as if instead of wanting to kill, it wants to save. . .

That’s exactly what it is, Jactur responded. It wants justice, but in a sick kind of way. Anyone who has hurt or killed any cat is basically a killer to this power, but I’d bet if Stormpaw learned how to control it, it would see justice from the right perspective.

Well this is going to be fun, Rainfur muttered. He probably thinks I should die a very slow death considering all the things I’ve done.

Yeah, my advice would be to stop him quickly, said Jactur.

I’m on it, Rainfur responded, lunging toward Stormpaw again. The small apprentice evaded the attack easily, but Rainfur knew that it was going to happen so he already had a leg out to trip Stormpaw. He did fall, leaving Rainfur to pin his apprentice down and bite down hard on his shoulder.

Tell me when to stop, Rainfur told Jactur. I don’t want to kill him.

What do I look like, a medicine cat? Jactur asked.

Just do what I said, Rainfur growled.

Fine, Jactur muttered. Now would be a good time.

Rainfur let go, noticing Stormpaw’s still body. He stood up and stepped off his apprentice, noticing that the battle was long over. They were no longer fighting, but instead looking to Rainfur and Stormpaw, their eyes wide.

“Who. . .” said Rosestar, drifting off as she stared wide-eyed at Stormpaw’s sleeping body. “What is that?”

“This is Stormpaw, the new apprentice,” Rainfur murmured. “He’s strange, and a little angry when it comes to cats who’ve made a few mistakes like yourself.”

“How dare you—”

“Don’t even try to deny it, Rosestar,” Rainfur growled, his eyes narrowed. “You’ve made mistakes. We all have. Anyway, Stormpaw is a bit. . .vicious when it comes to what cats deserve, which is why he didn’t become an apprentice until the gathering. Nightstar didn’t trust him.”

“It seems you still made a mistake,” Rosestar hissed.

“No, we didn’t,” Rainfur growled. “Stormpaw was fine until he saw you. We’re training it out of him, don’t worry. This won’t be the last time you see him.” Rosestar scoffed before looking to Bravestar, whom Rainfur just then noticed was near him.

“We will meet again, and next time, ShadowClan won’t be around to save your tails,” Rosestar spat before leading her Warriors out of WindClan territory. Rainfur looked over to Bravestar, smiling widely.

“Sorry to intrude, but I heard from Cloudstreak that you needed a bit of help,” said Rainfur, almost cheerfully.

“Thank you for helping, Rainfur,” said Bravestar, a warm smile on his face. “We wouldn’t have made it without you.” Rainfur dipped his head respectively before turning, finding that Nightstar had already started heading back toward ShadowClan territory.

Rainfur quickly grabbed Stormpaw by the scruff of his neck, pulling him back toward ShadowClan camp. There were no serious wounds on Rainfur nor Stormpaw, so he felt confident that they would both be okay.

*

“What on earth happened out there, Rainfur?” asked Nightstar furiously. “Stormpaw seemed fine, and then all of a sudden, he was acting like you before you got control over the insanity. What happened?” Rainfur lowered his head in defeat.

Nightstar was angry when he’d called Rainfur to his den, but now he was furious. It was as if just remembering the battle reminded the elder leader that he had not one but to crazy toms in his Clans.

“I’m not exactly sure, Nightstar,” Rainfur lied. “Stormpaw is, as I will now admit, the same thing I was. He is different though. He won’t kill those that haven’t done and bad things in their life, so—”

“He’s exactly like you?” asked Nightstar, shocked, though still angry. “Are you mouse-brain? Why didn’t you kill him when you had the chance?”

“He’s my apprentice!” Rainfur hissed, his ears pinned down to his head. “Not to mention the fact that I know he can be saved. As long as I teach him, he won’t be a problem.” Nightstar growled lowly in frustration.

“But he’s going to kill someone one the way,” Nightstar growled. “I know you’re good, Rainfur, but you can’t control something like that.”

“Watch me,” Rainfur hissed. Nightstar stood higher, showing his dominance. Rainfur just sighed, shaking his head. “Look, my point is I won’t kill anybody that doesn’t deserve it. Stormpaw hasn’t done anything yet, and with some training, he’ll be able to control it as much as I can.”

“What about the other Clans?” asked Nightstar. “What will they think?” Rainfur shrugged.

“WindClan’s under the impression we’ve got a crazy tom who just wants to kill everybody, and I’m sure Rosestar has told Sharpstar by now so that makes both WindClan and ThunderClan,” Rainfur told Nightstar. “RiverClan will understand if we’re allies, but even if we’re not, I’m sure Bravestar knows full well that I won’t let anything hurt him or his Clan.”

“You want to ally with RiverClan?” asked Nightstar, looking quite confused.

“Why not?” asked Rainfur. “Both ShadowClan and RiverClan are in a tight spot with both WindClan and ThunderClan combined. If we ally with RiverClan, both of us will get stronger. It’s the smart thing to do, but only if Bravestar agrees. After what Stormpaw did, however, I’m not quite sure Bravestar will agree to the alliance. He does owe us a favour for saving his Clan today though.” As Rainfur finished Nightstar looked at him as though he’d just blurted out the secret of being a human. An odd sight to see, really.

“You’ve got to be kidding me,” said Nightstar after a few moments of silence. “How can we make allies with RiverClan, control Stormpaw, and get ready for a war all at the same time? You must be mouse-brained!”

“I’m not mouse-brained, just too efficient I guess,” Rainfur muttered. “Besides, how hard could it be? The alliance will further our knowledge into WindClan’s movements as well as let me know when Robinwing will have her kits. You know she’s due any day now, and I don’t want the kits executed. It’s good to know when she’s near.” Nightstar narrowed his eyes tighter, as if trying to find out where Rainfur was getting at.

“I will be able to control Stormpaw well enough to keep him a secret from the other Clans,” Rainfur continued. “His power is still weaker than mine at the moment, and as long as it grows like mine did, it won’t be a problem. The only thing I need to work on is our relationship with each other, seeing as he hates me and I’m not really fond of him.” Nightstar seemed to be catching on, leaving Rainfur to smile.

“The war is something that will happen on any normal day,” Rainfur told the noble leader. “It will be a surprise, though we already knew it was coming. We need to get ready for it, but really, I think we’re strong enough as it is. With RiverClan on our side, we’ll be even stronger.” Nightstar was quiet again, though this time he seemed to be calmer.

“I see your point, Rainfur,” said Nightstar as he smiled with relief. “StarClan, am I glad I chose you as my deputy. You may leave now, and make sure you’re there when Stormpaw awakes. I have a feeling he’ll want to ask a lot of questions.” Rainfur dipped his head in respect before leaving, happier than he’d been all day.

As Rainfur walked out of the den, he felt a slight flare of pain in his shoulder. It had been hurting since Blackpelt had scratched it, and it had only made his head ache worse. Rainfur wondered absently if it had to do with the connection he had with Stormpaw, and if it would always be like this.

Guess I’ll just have to wait and see, Rainfur thought.

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