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EotW: Faded Boundries: Prologue

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By Jayie-The-Hufflepuff   |   
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Published:
Warriors Series 5.5: Echoes of the War
Book 1: Faded Boundaries
Prologue

     The night breeze blew into the medicine den, causing the small tom to shudder irritably. He lifted his nose, sniffing the air tenitively. The frigid air of leaf-bare offered no hint of warmth. It would be several moons before the forest was warm again.
 
     Jayfeather could hear his Clanmates shivering and mewling in hunger from his den. It had been a hard leaf-bare. Graystripe, Dustpelt, and Lichenkit, Lionblaze and Cinderheart's youngest kit, had already succumbed to the cold, and Cherrypaw had gotten seriously ill. The young she-cat lay on the floor of Jayfeather's den, a low moan issuing from her throat. The death of Lichenkit had been especially hard on Jayfeather. The poor little scrap had looked almost exactly like Lionblaze; he had seen her once in a vision. He knew how heartbroken his brother had been about it. Jayfeather himself had grieved over his niece as any father would. Since he and his long-dead love Half Moon could never bear kits, he had taken to his brother's kits as though they were his own. He liked to think that he and Half Moon would have been their parents, had things been different.

     The medicine cat shook his head irritably, his thoughts pushed roughly from his head. Stop daydreaming! He had to focus on helping his Clanmates. More cats would be lost to the cold if their medicine cat was lost in thought. The trouble was there wasn't much Jayfeather could do. The frost had killed all the herbs, and prey was scarce. From what Dovewing had told the medicine cat, it was the same way in the other three Clans. Mouse dung! He cursed inwardly. I've got the power of the stars in my paws, yet all I can do is sit around while my Clanmates die around me! Fighting the Dark Forest was easier than this.
 
     Paw steps woke Jayfeather from his bitter thoughts. The lichen in front of his den was shifted, and he could hear a cat breathing by the entrance. A familiar scent drifted towards him. "Jayfeather?" It was Lilypaw, Bramblestar's apprentice.
 
     The gray tabby got shakily to his paws. He'd been giving up most of his prey to Cinderheart, Rosepetal, and Hazeltail, the Clan's three queens, so he was a little weak. "What do you want?" He grumbled. Hunger sharpened his tongue, like every other cat.
 
     Jayfeather could sense Lilypaw's concern and unease. She didn't even seem to recognize the snap in the medicine cat's voice. "Lionblaze wants to see you." She mewed hesitantly.
 
     Jayfeather's heart froze. No. Not again. The image of Lichenkit's frozen body forced its way to the front of Jayfeather's mind. He barged past Lilypaw, shouting over his shoulder, "Keep an eye on Cherrypaw!" He raced to the nursery, his heart pounding with terror.
 
     The tom skidded to a halt at the mouth of the nursery, panting at the effort the short run had cost him. He sniffed the air cautiously, dreading the thought of smelling another dead kit. "What's wrong?" He demanded. "Are Silentkit and Blazekit okay?"
 
     He heard Cinderheart lift her head and Lionblaze get to his paws. Jayfeather could sense Cinderheart's relief at seeing him, then her emotions closed off abruptly, and her mind barred itself against him. That was how so many cats were acting around him now. Now that the secret was out, and every cat knew what the Three could do. Everyone except for some of the older, more experienced cats seemed spooked by the idea that their medicine cat could read their thoughts. Jayfeather could easily get around Cinderheart's defenses, but he had no wish to. It was Lionblaze he wanted information from right now.
 
     He scanned Lionblaze's thoughts briefly. His brother didn't make as much of an effort to hide his thoughts from Jayfeather as the others, so it  was easy to raid his mind. Jayfeather let out a sigh of relief when he realized that all Lionblaze was feeling was worry, not grief.
 
     The massive tom padded up to his brother. "Silentkit and Blazekit opened their eyes yesterday." He began hesitantly.
 
     Jayfeather grew uneasy. "Is that what you brought me here to tell me?" He asked drily, although fear clenched his heart. He knew what Lionblaze was going to say, but he needed to hear it anyway.
 
     Lionblaze sighed. "Jayfeather… I think Silentkit is blind."
 
     The gray tabby's memories were instantly thrown back to the day of Silentkit's birth. It had been a hard labour, and Cinderheart had been weak from cold and hunger. All three of her kits were weak and small, but they had all survived the birthing. Jayfeather had been congradulating the couple when his sight suddenly returned. He could see Lichenkit, Blazekit, and Silentkit, all suckling weakly at their mother's stomach. Silentkit was odd in that she hadn't cried out after birth, as most kittens did. From the start, she'd been the weakest of the kits, hardly bigger then a baby bird. It'd been days before she'd let out her first mewl, as though she'd been waiting to see if she'd make it at all before she announced herself to the world. She'd been tiny, her jet-black fur plastered down to her body. A small white stripe lay between her eyes, running down to her nose. Even then, as a newborn kit, she had reminded Jayfeather of his late sister, Hollyleaf.
 
     Yellowfang's foul scent had rolled over him, and her raspy voice sounded in his ears. "Remember this one, Jayfeather. You must help her meet her destiny." The old she-cat paused, and when she spoke again, her voice had been smoothed of age . "Dark times are coming. Only blind loyalty and silent sacrifice will save the Clans."
 
     "Jayfeather? Are you listening?"
 
     Jayfeather was jerked back into reality by Lionblaze's sharp words. He shook his head of the vision, wondering what in StarClan's name was supposed to happen next. "Let me check." He mewed. The blind tom reached out towards Silentkit's scent, gently pulling the kit closer to him. He took a quick breath before plunging into the kit's thoughts, searching through her memories for any hint of color or light. But there was none there. The kit's memories were all as dark as Jayfeather's sight.
 
     Jayfeather blinked in shock. She is blind! Oh StarClan, what next? The tabby tom froze in horror as he realized the depth of this revelation. Silentkit would never be able to see, not even in her dreams like Jayfeather could. She would never understand the concept of sight. The poor kit might never be a full part of ThunderClan.
 
     Jayfeather hung his head. "I'm sorry." He whispered.
 
     He heard a sharp intake of breath from Cinderheart, and despair burst through her guarded thoughts like water from a dam. Lionblaze's thoughts were a torrent of anger, despair, and in the end, resignation. "This is my fault." The huge tom murmured. "I'm the one related to a blind cat. I did this to our daughter."

     Jayfeather snarled softly at Lionblaze's careless reference to his blindness, but he didn't retort for once. He too was in a state of shock. What if you're wrong, Yellowfang? He wailed internally. How can she save her Clan without sight? He himself had only been of use because of his powers. How could this kit, without sight or the power of the stars in her paws, ever save ThunderClan?

     Suddenly, the world around him lit up. He was not in the nursery anymore, but deep in the forests of ThunderClan territory. Pale golden light streamed through the trees, painting the forest floor with light patterns. A few paces from the medicine cat stood a lone cat. The full-grown Silenkit was small like Jayfeather, but made of lean, hard muscle that rippled under her glossy pelt. Her midnight black fur was short and shiny, unlike the fluffier Hollyleaf, but the resemblance was still there in the color of her fur and the shape of her head.

     The she-cat stood before Jayfeather, strong and powerful and confident, her gray eyes blazing with fierce loyalty. A sweet scent wove around Jayfeather, heart-achingly familiar. He let out a slight moan. "Half Moon."

     Her gentle voice sounded in his ear. "Help her, Jay's Wing. Guide her paws on the right path. She must become a true warrior to prepare for what is coming. Have faith in her strength."

     Her scent began to fade, and the forest around the tom grew darker. Jayfeather started to panic. "No, Half Moon!" He gasped. "Don't leave!"

     Her voice was faint now. "I will always walk beside you, Jay's Wing." As the scents and sounds of the nursery returned to Jayfeather, he was only just able to catch her last words. "Until the day you come to join me."

     The darkness around Jayfeather and the cold air of leaf-bare returned the medicine cat to his senses. He was blind once more.

     Rosepetal's voice sounded from across the nursery. "She can't be a warrior then." Her voice was gentle with pity. The queen groaned as she shifted. Her kits were due in less than a moon, and her stomach was round and awkward. "Maybe she can train to be the next medicine cat?"

     The suggestion filled Jayfeather with panic. He desperately sorted through Cinderheart and Lionblaze's emotions, trying to find some spark of outrage or hope. Cold claws gripped his heart when he realized there was nothing but resignation and pity. He gritted his teeth in a snarl. They would give up on their daughter so easily?

     Something in Jayfeather snapped. "No!" Ignoring the other cats' alarm, he dragged Silentkit closer to him, where he could protect her. The skinny tom arched his back and gave a threatening hiss. "Silentkit's paws must walk another path. So what if she can't see?"

     He swung his head side to side, sightlessly glaring at any cat who might dare oppose him. "Silentkit is going to be a warrior, even if I have to train her myself!"
© 2012 - 2020 Jayie-The-Hufflepuff
COVER: link
ALLEGIANCES: link
PROLOGUE: YOU ARE HERE
NEXT: link

Here we are with the prologue of Faded Boundries. Just so you know, the Jayfeather POV is only a prologue thing. I hate to have to leave his POV, but I must. Anyway, more later. I really hope you guys like this, and that you don't think it's cheesy that I'll be working with another blind cat.
Comments47
anonymous's avatar
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Etherinea's avatar
EtherineaHobbyist General Artist
This is really good so far! I love how you wrote Jayfeather; he's grumpy but not as callous as he can be in the books, and it's clear he has a lot of faith in Silentkit already and doesn't want her be pitied/sidelined like he was.
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Thanks! :D That's what I've always loved about Jayfeather, a grumpy exterior with a truly loving heart undernearth (his interactions with Briarlight and stuff like "as long as I have breath in my body, the Clans will survive" have me firmly convinced of that), and I definitely wanted to get that across in this. About 80% of my motivation for writing this fic was getting to write Jayfeather as a supportive uncle. XD
KelpyART's avatar
KelpyARTHobbyist Digital Artist
I just absolutely love the concept that her name (Silentkit) literally comes from the fact that she didn't make any noise until she was older but also ties into the prophecy so well ;; I love that- like, there was a reason for her name. So often, I see kits named things in AU/fanfictions that don't really mean anything other than to tie in a cool prophecy into. I really like that you did that ;;
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Aw, thank you. :D For minor characters I’ll often go with a name that just sounds cool, but on more focused-on characters, I always like to try to have some level of meaning to their name, multiple layers of meaning if I can manage it. ^^
KingSols's avatar
KingSolsHobbyist Digital Artist
this is the jayfeather i like to see, not the jerk version.
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
He’s snarky and grumpy and gruff, but he truly cares about those around him, and that’s why he’s my favorite. ^^
ThatOneWarriorsFan's avatar
ThatOneWarriorsFanStudent Writer
OH MY GOODNESS THIS IS AWESOME!

I love your work Jayie.
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Aw, thank you very much. :D
RyesCreates's avatar
RyesCreatesHobbyist Traditional Artist
oh cool <^.^>
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Thanks. :)
RyesCreates's avatar
RyesCreatesHobbyist Traditional Artist
your welcome <^.^>
applebriar's avatar
I'm re-reading the first book, and forgot how much I loved Jayfeather in this. Your use of description was amazing, and I like how you really seemed to be writing his thoughts as though Erin Hunter were the author B) Knowing how Silentpaw and Blazepaw later, it's kinda cool to see the growth.
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Aw, thank you. :D I love writing Jayfeather, he's my favorite character in the canon books.
applebriar's avatar
Agreed, he's probably my favorite of the Three! ;3 (Although if you're going littermate-wise, Hollyleaf was always my ultimate favorite, and I was so upset when she died /sigh)
Also!! I was wondering if you were going to post updated allegiances for the second book? c:
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Hollyleaf was pretty awesome too. :D

I will, after I finish all the images for FB's allegiances.
XxFlashStarxX's avatar
XxFlashStarxXHobbyist General Artist
holy crap i was just blown away. Your writing sounds just like erin hunter. DONT STOP IT NOW! I have made a continuation but it is definitely not as good and it isn't as sad but keep writing!! :D :D :D
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Don't worry, I have no intention to stop. I'm working on the next chapter, and I'll try to have it up soon. :D
heparham's avatar
heparhamStudent
cool
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Chapter One is up, if you want to read it.
heparham's avatar
heparhamStudent
cool
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
Thanks! :)
daisyfangs's avatar
daisyfangsHobbyist General Artist
YEAH, JAYFEATHER, TRAIN SILENTKIT LIKE THE TOTALLY AWESOME UNCLE YOU ARE~ XD
Jayie-The-Hufflepuff's avatar
Jayie-The-HufflepuffHobbyist Writer
He will, don't you worry! He won't let Silentkit get passed over because she's blind.
daisyfangs's avatar
daisyfangsHobbyist General Artist
Awesomeee~
anonymous's avatar
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