Heronflight's Dawn May 30, 2019 1:30:46 GMT
Post by gingersnapsdacat on May 30, 2019 1:30:46 GMT
The Dawn of a New Leader
Seven cats sat in the mine, surrounding the Moonstone. Five deputies, two medicine cats, all of them unsure of what was going to happen. When RookStar had made the decision that all five of them would serve as deputy, they had all been confused. They had all wondered what it meant, and what StarClan would do. Now, they had no choice but to find out. RookStar was dead, and one of them would have to assume his position. The only question was...who would it be?Heronflight doubted that it would be her. Not counting Foxfall, she was the youngest, and most inexperienced out of them all, and Foxfall had the advantage of being the former leader’s brother, so surely she would have to be the lowest in rank.
“All of you, close your eyes, and touch the stone,” Lilydawn commanded, her tired mew echoing through the cavern. “This should be...interesting.”
The brown patched she-cat obeyed, crouching down in front of the stone. It's cold blue light seemed to surround her, even when she closed her eyes. A rush of cold energy ran down her entire body, coursing through each and every vein. She quickly raised her head, and her whole world was enveloped by an ethereal glow.
This must be StarClan, she thought, looking around in wonder and awe.
“Yes my child. This is indeed the home of your ancestors.”
Heronflight quickly turned, amazed to discover that OwlStar stood before her. The former leader looked at her with a gaze filled with all the wisdom of the generations.
“You have been chosen.”
“Chosen? As in…”
“Yes. You are the one StarClan has chosen to be the next to lead IvyClan.”
Heronflight stared in disbelief at the starry she-cat. She couldn’t be leader, could she? What about all the other deputies? Surely one of them was a better fit for the role.
As if OwlStar could hear the young warrior’s thoughts, she shook her head.
“No Heronflight. StarClan has chosen that you will lead my clan. Do you accept?”
Heronflight quickly nodded, not wanting to dissapoint the former leader.
“Yes...I mean..I do.”
OwlStar bowed her head, returning the nod.
"Then let the ceremony begin.”
All around her, other cats began to appear. Among them Heronflight could see old clan-mates, friends, and those that she had never even known.
“I give you a life for mentorship. You have taught many to be warriors, and now you must teach the clan.”
OwlStar touched her nose to heronflight’s head, sending a firey burning through her whole body. In that moment, she felt all of OwlStar’s grief, all of her sadness, but also all of her joy and hope. Heronflight locked her eyes onto those of the beautiful she-cat, an unspoken message of understanding passing between them. “Lead my clan well Heronflight.”
A brown fluffball stepped up beside OwlStar, gently nudging her out of the way.
“Hi there! I’m Hyacinthkit,” the tom purred, a welcoming warmth emenating from his mew.
Before Heronflight got a chance to ask who Hyacinthkit was, or why he was there, he had touched his nose to hers, sending her mind melding with his. She could see stars, and soft grass, and a lonely brown kitten watching his brothers and sisters play. She could only assume that was the cat in front of her, and that the others must have been his brothers and sisters who were still in the clans.
“I give you a life of hope. Even when things are lonely, you always have a clan full of cats who love and support you.”
The tom stepped back, padding to stand once again beside OwlStar. Heronflight glanced from her former leader to the fluffy tom, but chose not to ask. If OwlStar chose to be in the company of an unknown kit, who was Heronflight to judge? Her attention was quickly shifted as another cat, a ruddy brown tomcat, took his place in front of her.
“Thornflame,” Heronflight mewed, recognizing the StarClan tom.
Immedietly, she thought of his former apprentice, and her failed attempts to take over for his last moon of training. Guilt washed over her like summer rain.
“I tried to help Martentooth, I really did but-”
“I know,” Thornflame mewed, cutting off Heronflight’s excuses. “You did what you could, and Martentooth became a warrior.”
“No. He has become a warrior, and that is what matters. Now you must become a leader.”
Heronflight nodded, though she still wished she could have done something more.
“I give you this life for learning. Never think that you know all there is. Even the youngest kit can show you something you never knew.”
Thornflame touched his nose to her forehead, and a cool breeze flowed through her, clearing all of her muddled senses. But as soon as it had begun, it was over, and another cat stood in front of Heronflight. Bearstar smiled at the IvyClan deputy, her eyes bright and clear for the first time since Heronflight had last seen her alive.
“I know we are from different clans, but our pride is still the same,” purred the brown she-cat. “I give you a life for strength, both of claw and of heart,” the MistClan leader purred. She touched her nose to Heronflight’s cheek, sending a warm and feirce blaze through the IvyClan she-cat. In that moment, Heronflight could see all of the hardships that the MistClan leader had felt. Losing kits, losing her sight. Losing hope. But all through it, she had to put on a brave faca for her clan, never letting them feel her pain. BearStar did not need to explain the life any further.
A large, furry Tom stepped into her view, and Heronflight found herself instinctively backing up a few paces. Why, of all cats, was Mothstar here?
“I’m here to give you a life mousebrain,” the old tomcat grumbled, filling in the space that she had opened.
Heronflight nodded awkwardly, unsure of how to respond to the former leader of MothClan.
“I give you a life for perseverance. Sometimes life sucks. But you can get over it eventually.”
He quickly touched his nose to her forehead, before strutting back into the crowd.
Next, a large wildcat stepped forwards, gently rubbing his cheek against OwlStar as he passed. Moorwhisker looked his former apprentice up and down, a crooked grin on his face.
“Eh, I suppose ye turned ou’ pretty okaie,” he muttered, warmth in his mew.
Heronflight happily embraced her mentor, breathing in the scent of his familiar pelt. Moorwhisker moved only slightly, allowing his nose to make contact with Heronflight’s forehead as she still rubbed against him.
“Fer this life, ai give ye courage. But don’ think ye cannae be scared. Courage means bein’ scared bu’ still goin foreward.”
With these wise words, Moorwhisker stepped back, allowing the next cat, a brown and white tom, to saunter forewards.
Heronflight looked at the next cat in confusion. He looked familiar, but Heronflight could not place where the two of them had met. It was like a distant memory.
“Hiya, big sister,” the striped tomcat purred, twitching his starflecked whiskers. “It’s me, Robin!”
The warrior felt her jaw drop as she moved forwards to look at her brother. He had died when they were just kits, too weak to survive a harsh bout of greencough, but now he looked strong and healthy.
“I decided to keep this apprentice sized body,” he purred, watching his sister look him over. “I think it suits me.”
Heronflight continued to stare at the sprightly tom, her green eyes glistening with tears.
“Hey! Don’t you dare start crying,” Robin threathened jokingly, “I may be apprentice-sized, but I can still kick your tail!”
Heronflight could not resist smiling at her small brother's threats. Still grinning, Robin stepped forwards to nuzzle his sister’s cheek.
“I give you a life for youth. Never forget the joys of being young.”
He gave her a parting lick, then ran back into the crowd.
This time, it was a ginger she-cat who looked at her with a gaze that immedietly made Heronflght feel like she was at home.
The ginger she-cat nodded.
“I’m glad to finally meet you Heronflight. Wildstep told me much about you.”
Heronflight could not help but smile, thinking of the things she had heard about the starclan queen.
“Yes, I have watched the way you care for him and your kits. I just wish that I could have done the same. Instead, I give you a life for Motherhood. Treat all the clan as your own, and show them the love I never could show my own kits.”
The brown and white queen dipped her head, feeling Dawnpetal’s cheek gently rubbing along her own. Warmth, joy, and happiness flowed through her like a waterfall, caressing every sense. But at the same time, Heronflight could feel a sense of longing, and regret for what never could have been. She could only imagine that was Dawnpetal’s own grief at never having seen her kits become warriors.
Rookstar stepped forwards, his eyes sparkling with an awareness that Heronflight could not remember seeing since he had been a young deputy.
“When I chose you as one of my deputies, I had my doubts,” the tomcat admitted, flashing a teasing grin. “But I hereby give you a life for trusting your instincts, even when they seem to lead you astray.”
He quickly touched his nose to hers, only giving her a moment to see into his thoughts before he backed away. Now, Heronflight could feel all of StarClan watching her.
“Heronflight, you have served IvyClan as a noble warrior, a proud queen, and a honorable deputy. It is my honor to address you now as Heronstar.”