Martenpaw had given up wholly on the idea of sleeping long before the sun was due to come up that morning. All he knew was that his days being tied to the Nursery was over, and he was a warrior! Well...maybe not just yet, but it was only a matter of semantics. Surely his newly-given mentor would see how amazing he was at everything already and he'd be receiving his actual warrior name in no time. Cats like him, well - they skipped a lot of things. Surely he was better suited to teaching others, not learning.
All he knew was that he better make a good impression; and so had headed out of his den extra early, leaving it in a bit of a ruffled mess, in order to meet Thornflame at the assigned place. On his way there, he was already boxing at shadows, showing off the moves he was sure would wow his mentor, and show them that he truly was already prepared to serve Ivyclan to it's fullest capacity.
"And take that, Mothclan scum! Think you can come over our borders. Mistclan, you bunch of smelly fish-eaters, you've never met the likes of me! Take that - and THAT! And certainly some of THIS!" He executed a running pounce - or would have, if his hid paw had not somehow tangled with his front paws, sending him tumbling head over tail to land on the loaming soil with no breath left in him whatsoever.
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Thornflame let out a mrrow of laughter as he walked over to his new apprentice. "Ah, I see I got the expert." he purred, reaching down to grab his scruff and help him. His gaze softened, but a small smile was still on his muzzle when he spoke. "Seriously, Martenpaw, are you alright?" he asked as he flicked his tail. Hopefully his apprentice hadn't already injured himself to the point where he couldn't train. "I sure hope you don't have to go back to the nursery, if you're acting like a kit rather than an apprentice." The golden brown tom leaned down to sniff his apprentice's paws. He was no medicine cat, but it didn't seem very bad. It probably hurt, though- but what did he know?
"I'm going to give you a tour of the camp, today, if you can manage going five seconds without hurting yourself." he meowed, rolling his eyes playfully and flicking his tail, signalling for Martenpaw to follow him.
Of course his mentor would come across him on one of his lowest moments. That just seemed to be fate; but even while he knew he should probably be grateful that he hadn't been seriously hurt, and that his mentor was willing to just let him laugh it off and help him back up, he struggled against him helping him up. He wasn't a kit; he didn't have to be picked up and coddled just for some stupid mistake.
"'M fine!" He grumbled. If anything was hurt, it was his pride. "I just....misjudged is all. It's the stupid floor's fault!" He looked over his shoulder, glaring at the spot that had tripped him up as if he was planning it's demise. Indeed, he could gleefully imagine taking some of the bumpy roots and shredding them with his claws until they were good for nothing except feeding some grass-eaters.
He did his best to not seem disappointed at the idea of a camp tour. "I did grow up here, y'know?" He grumbled beneath his breath. Already it seemed he had somewhat disappointed his mentor; seeing as he was already thinking he should head back to the nursery, wet behind the ears as he was. "Havn't I seen everything around the camp already? I mean...there are trees and borders, right? And the Main Camp - which I think I've explored about a billion times, trust me!"
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Thornflame narrowed his eyes. Had Martenpaw been a warrior of average age, he would've coldly dismissed his request and marched on, but since he was barely an apprentice, he couldn't help himself. Young cats were his weakness, even if he wouldn't admit it. "Don't get used to me being so lenient." he growled. Changing direction, he padded deeper into the forest until he met the abandoned thunder trail. He faintly remembered his own apprentice days. He hadn't been in this territory, but he thought he remembered a thunder trail in the old territory. His memory wasn't the greatest nowadays, so he might've been wrong about it. Ah, oh well.
"There's no borders up here, but there's the thunder trail. It's abandoned, but don't go messing around on it." the senior warrior said quickly. He shifted his weight onto the other side, and he motioned with his head for them to go another direction. After all, there really was nothing else there for him to discover about.
As he walked away from the trail, towards the thinner trees of Araios Woods, he caught the strong scent of squirrel and couldn't help his instincts to catch it. Flicking his tail to quiet Martenpaw, he silently stepped through the undergrowth until he saw it, nibbling on an acorn, and pounced. It realized too late and didn't have time to even squirm before it fell limp, dead in Thornflame's jaws. He buried it beneath a bundle of broken twigs, returning to his apprentice. "That's how you catch a squirrel, if you were wondering. You'll be trying next, so I hope you were paying attention." he murmured in his ear, setting off for the woods.
While his mentor hadn't done anything to truly rebuke him, a part of Martenpaw realized he might have stepped over some unseen boundary; he flattened his ears a bit and had the courage to look at least a bit cowed, looking down at the ground between his paws as if it held the answers he was searching for. By the time he looked up, Thornflame had continued on a few tail lengths, and he had to catch up with the older tom by practically leaping forward to keep up with the older cat's bigger strides.
As they walked on, though, he found himself losing interest. In his own mind he was keeping up a commentary that he didn't dare voice outloud. Yep...that's a tree....and there's another tree...but what you're gonna see over here is really going to amaze you....it's another TREE! So, lost in his own petulant narration that he nearly jumped out of his fur when he felt something change underpaw.
He had come to rest his front feet against the old thunderpath; and he jumped back from the strangeness of it's feel underfoot. "What'd they make it out of?!" He curled his upper lip and prodded it again. It felt kind of stone-like, but totally strange too. It made his fur crawl. "Thornflame, why would they make something so strange and then abandon - Thornflame?"
Again, the tom had turned tail, and he dove forward to keep up. Maybe, he thought, this was some part of a bigger test. If he could keep up with the massive warrior, he'd win or something. Thinking of it that way at least made things more interesting than some stupid tour.
They continued on for a moment until Thornflame shushed him. Thinking it was something interesting, Martenpaw immediately dropped to a crouch - or rather, flopped gracelessly to his belly, looking up at the older warrior in awe as he took down a squirrel right before them. "Wow!" He cheered, likely scaring away any of the squirrels family that remained in the trees around them. Truth be told, the hunt had a bit of an added effect. It showed off the coolness of the older warrior's skills, as well as sutbly reminding the tom that there probably wasn't much separating him from being that squirrel if Thornflame wanted to show him who was boss and rough him up.
"I wanna do that too! I so can do that!" He crowed, spinning in a circle in his excitement, much like a dog would chase his own tail.
There it was again. The innocent, naive excitement that most young cats had coursing through their veins. Thornflame, too, had been just as energetic as Martenpaw was. Although that might end up being a bit much for the senior warrior to handle, he couldn't actually dislike the apprentice at all with how much he reminded Thornflame of himself. "Don't worry, Martenpaw. By the time you're a warrior, you'll be catching squirrels with ease." he purred. "For now, I hope you can settle for learning the technique."
Thornflame walked away with a flick of his tail, towards a clearing better for training. "First things first. Stay as quiet as you can, which I know may be hard for you. Take in all your surroundings- avoid all twigs, crunchy leaves, or anything that might tell prey you're there. Stealth is everything when you don't have room to chase." he said quietly, his warm gaze focusing on his apprentice for a moment. When he was an apprentice, it had taken quite a while for him to learn everything there was to know. He knew Martenpaw would take a while to learn everything, too.
"Next, the crouch. Get as low to the ground as you can without laying on the ground, like this." Thornflame demonstrated expertly, crouching in a nearly perfect hunter's crouch with his belly fur nearly brushing the grass beneath him. His body was stiff and rigid, unmoving beside his breathing. Thornflame grinned a little to himself- he still had his proper posture, even being older than a warrior who might have better joints than him. "Be still. Don't move until you absolutely know it's the time to strike. Be quick, though, since the prey might notice you if you stay too long.
"And then, when the time is right, pounce!" Thornflame leaped, pushing with his hind legs and launching his body forward, aiming to knock into Martenpaw. A surprise attack only works when they least expect it, and that time happened to be right about now.
Now this was more like it! Martenpaw knew that his pushing would eventually lead to some sort of interesting training going on; rather than just touring the lands that had been his home for ages. Sure, he hadn't exactly travelled to other parts, but now, well...he was ready and willing to learn important things.
"Like...this?" He asked, flattening himself into a somewhat awkward position, his hind and front legs practically flat on the ground while he was careful to suck in his belly so it didn't touch - just like Thornflame cautioned. He looked like an inchworm stuck in mid-crawl...and it was really awkward to move in. Which meant it was too late for him to do anything when he looked over at Thornflame and saw him not leaping at an invisible or real squirrel - but at him.
"Gah!" Letting out a scream that was somewhere between a kitten squeak and a full-grown yelp, he was carefully bowled over by his mentor's paws, tumbling end over end and ending up in an undignified way on his back; paws floundering in the open air for purchase on something that didn't exist. "No fair!" He immediately cried. "I wasn't ready! I was hunting, not fighting!"
Carried Home is a Warriors roleplay forum. We feature four clans - all four of which have futures that heavily depend on what your characters do - as well as a 50 word count minimum on RP posts, and a functioning currency and shop.
While most of the action does center around our four clans, members are also permitted to make loners, rogues, and kittypets. You can also make both StarClan and Dark Forest characters.