The rays of glorious sunlight shone through the gaps of the den, shining on the streaky copper fur of a cat, sleeping soundly, bathing under the beautiful golden rays as the sun peaked over the horizon, bleeding the most saturated crimsons and gold colours into the sky. Chirping of nearby birds emanated from the surrounding trees, swaying in the breezy, comforting wind.
As the sun rose into the sky, the cat's peaceful sleep broke. Opening its hazel eyes, it got up carefully, making sure it hadn't woken up any of their sleeping den-mates. As their fur ruffled, they gently padded throughout a small clearing, surrounded by towering green trees.
"Good morning." A voice mewed somberly in greeting.
"Hello." The cat softly replied, licking a paw and brushing it over their ear.
"How are you, Tawnyclaw?" They asked. "I'm glad that you're up early, I was planning to send you out on a hunting patrol with Applefur and Mudtail."
"I'm good." Tawnyclaw answered.
Two more cats approached the pair. One had short beige fur with a brown paw and a white chest, and the other had dark brown fur, blended with black and dark orange patches.
"Hello. Tawnyclaw, Stormwhisker." The beige cat said, addressing the two in a formal manner.
Nodding in greeting, Tawnyclaw sat down and washed herself.
"Applefur, Mudtail, you are to accompany Tawnyclaw on a hunting patrol she will be leading today." Stormwhisker ordered.
For a brief moment, Applefur and Mudtail exchanged a greeting. "Okay."
Stormwhisker nodded. "Good. I expect you to keep Tawnyclaw in good care as this is her first patrol. You may leave now."
"Thank you." Tawnyflight purred, getting up as her to accompanies bounded off to the camp's exit.
Looking up, Tawnyflight looked around at her beautiful surroundings af is in a trance. The azure sky above her was dotted with large white clouds that floated peacefully around the sky and the scent of prey hiding in the forest filled her with determination for her first hunt.
"Snap out of it, what have you, bees in your brain?" Applefur snapped, reality rushing back to her as fast as a monster on the nearby thunderpath.
"Sorry." Tawnyflight mewed.
Trying to focus on just the scents of unknowing prey, she tasted the air and decided to follow a trail. She saw her target, a large vole, and dropped into a hunter's crouch, forgetting to keep downwind from her prey. The vole tensed up suddenly and scurried away from her.
Mudtail sighed. "Can't you remember simple training?" His voice mockingly called as a freshly killed dead pigeon stood between his paws.
"Sorry." She apologized, staring at the ground underneath her, feeling quite stupid.
"Okay." She thought to herself, trying to heighten her senses and not get distracted by the surroundings around her. Turning her head, she tasted the air once more and noticed that there was a nearby bird. Her muscles tensed as she stared intensely at the bird, scratching at the ground, looking for minuscule pieces of food. Slowly crouching again, she waited until she thought suitable and pounced, gracefully flying through the air. As she passed through the air, time felt like it suddenly slowed down to a halt. Before the bird could even move, Tawnyflight dropped onto it and took a swift bite to its neck, ending its life quickly but brutally. Applefur and Mudtail approached her fresh kill.
"Good job. At least you caught something." Mudfur mewed, and Tawnyflight thought that it was a taunt as his tail spiked up to point to a small pile of fresh kill.
All Tawnyflight replied with was a short hiss, her eyes flickering like flames of a fire with warning. The three cats approached the pile, picking up some to return it back to camp. As they got closer to camp, the protecting trees growing taller, a rancid scent filled Applefur's nose.
Stopping, Applefur pricked up his ears and tensed his muscles, his claws flexing as if anticipating an upcoming attack from a rival cat. The group paused, and Tawnyflight became more anxious as the scent grew stronger, filling the air with a toxic smelling reek. There could only be one explanation to the smell.
"TWOLEGS!" Mudfur shrieked, spotting a small pack of twolegs wearing flashy orange pelts striped with silver lines walked through, quickly pacing towards the cats. Mudfur and Appleflight raced away, towards the camp with fear but Tawnyflight remained in the same spot she was stood in. Bracing herself, her brown fur standing on end and her back arching, Applefur and Mudfur stood in awe to see their clanmate standing helpless, but in fear of attack, exchanged a worried glance and ran towards camp. Anxiety overwhelming her, Tawnyflight suddenly ran, an adrenaline fueled race towards the two legs began and she darted past them, continuing running in the opposite direction of her camp as she suddenly fell into a hole, darkness swallowing her as she landed with a thump onto hard cold ground.