Chapter Two - Secrets

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I woke up in the spot I was in before; the sun wasn't up enough to call it daytime, though. I stood up and stretched until I felt relieved. I shook out my pelt and cleaned my fur up. Dried mud had clumped up my fur and stained my back and legs. Sighing, I continued to clean it until I was satisfied. No one else was up but me.

The crickets and frogs had stopped their singing. The ground was covered with the morning dew from last night. I began to shiver as a cool breeze blew my stained, white pelt. All of a sudden, Scourge was up and on his den. He looked down on me with narrowed eyes.

"And what are you doing out here, Icekit?" He growled, bringing his head down for him to look at me closer. He was a small, sleek, black tom. A very sneaky one, to be particular.

"I er... fell asleep beside the nursery and woke up because it was so cold," I murmured to Scourge, keeping my gaze down as I shuffled my paws. He may have been small, but his claws and teeth could rip me apart in mere heartbeats.

He nodded. "Right. Since no one else is up, you will come with me to look at the territory." My ears went straight up and my heart started thumping hard.

"Before Bloodkit and Deathkit? Is this a joke?" I gasped and he purred, jumping down beside me. Scourge? Purring? This must be a dream.

"No, I am serious, Icekit. Come on," Scourge padded out of the camp and I tagged along. We left the camp in silence, passing by the two guards who kept watch during the night. I was amazed at how much territory there was that I didn't know of.

We were in the forest, just beside a land of pines. Prey scattered away as we shuffled along the territory we homed to. BloodClan has so much territory it is unbelievable! I bounced around, hopping in front of Scourge. "So, why'd you choose me to come here?" I puffed as I hopped around, checking things out.

"I was just as small as you when I was a kit. Not many cats believe in you, that you can succeed in what I expect you to, which was how I used to be treated," Scourge explained, his eyes forward. We halted just at the edge of the pine territory. "I was once named Tiny and my two littermates teased me and pushed me around just as much as Bloodkit and Deathkit do to you. They got everything - Twolegs and love - while I got close to nothing.

"Eventually, I ran away and found myself homed to the alleyways in Twolegplace. I had pretended to be a dog-killer and got myself dog teeth to decorate my collar. And after moons of that, I became the most known cat in all of Twolegplace. I was a liar and a killer, you know." He finished, his eyes gleaming bright with pride.

I was so shocked at how Scourge was called names by his littermates. We have so much in common!

"I want to be just like you, Scourge!" I squeaked, rushing after him. He was heading off through the pine territory. "The only thing that's different is that you're black and I'm white!" I purred and he smirked, looking over at me.

Deathkit and Bloodkit wouldn't believe Scourges' past! I bet everyone will love me when I tell them Scourge and I are alike!

Just as the sun was fully coming up, we came back to camp. I had caught a mouse - Scourge had showed me how - and he had caught a dove and a vole.

"Can I tell the others I was out training with you?" I whispered and Scourge shook his head.

"You'll be strong without anyone knowing. Let them tease you; things will turn out." He bowed his head to me, taking my mouse, and entered the camp without me.

I felt lonely as he left me and weak again as he took my mouse. How can I just let them make fun of me? I should tell them Scourge took me out! But they wouldn't believe me... And if I do that then Scourge will be angry and not train me...

So I decided not to tell them as Scourge had ordered.

With confidence, I entered the camp again. I began to pad into the nursery when Deathkit and Bloodkit came running out. They shoved by me, making me stumble and fall.

"Oops!" Deathkit sneered, his whiskers twitching in amusement.

"Watch out, pipsqueak, you might get run over by a mouse!" Bloodkit retorted, pushing me back down as I began to stand up.

I felt a growl beginning to slip up my throat. "When I'm an apprentice, I'll beat you two by myself! Watch out because I'll kill you-" I was interrupted by Tawnypelt who nudged me harshly.

"Icekit." She snarled, "Do not threaten your littermates. Get into the nursery and don't come back out!"

I felt a surge of confidence run through my veins and I growled right on back, "That's where I was going anyway before these two greasy mouse-brains came out and ran all over me!"

Tawnypelt glared at me and I hissed at her, running into the nursery.

This isn't fair! Why can't they treat me right? Why does Tawnypelt stick up for Deathkit and not me? Is there something wrong with me? I picked apart the nest I used to sleep in and made one at the edge of the den.

"I'll go out and get prey for myself when Tawnypelt is sleeping or sunning..." I sighed, curling up in my new, small nest.

***

I woke up to cheerful mews in the den. Blinking my eyes open, I looked around. Deathkit and Bloodkit were tumbling around, play fighting. They had their claws unsheathed, freely slashing at each other. No one seemed to care that they were tearing each other apart. Rolling my eyes, I thought, Who would care? Their jerks.

I groaned and got up, arching my back in a long, refreshing stretch. They didn't seem to notice I was up and I tried to keep it that way.

Stalking out of the den, I kept my tail just off the ground and my ears flat to my head. I rushed out of the entrance and over to the fresh-kill pile. Before I could get to it, a cat stopped me. Great, what now? I thought, looking up to see Frostfur. "Aren't you a bit young to be trying fresh-kill?" She asked, narrowing her brilliant blue eyes.

I shrugged, moving past her. "I haven't eaten in at least two days. Tawnypelt insists Deathkit eats before me." I rolled my eyes, then muttered to myself, "And then he never let's me have any."

"Well, alright. Come share with me then." Frostfur mewed, grabbing a mouse and nudging me along.

I trekked along to a tree that lined the edge of our camp. I sat down when Frostfur did, her white fur a bit knotted and her tail fluffed out. She looked paranoid. Is everyone always alarmed? I wondered, studying her blue eyes. "Dig in." Frostfur nodded to the mouse and I gladly did.

After almost choking a few times, I ate half of the mouse Frostfur provided for me. The mouse was more than enough. It was juicy, still warm, and fat. It was delicious and I found myself wanting more, even though I knew I couldn't fit any more in my stomach.

"Can I have some more?" I licked my lips and glanced up at Frostfur hopefully.

"No, Icekit, you'll learn that you get one fresh-kill per day. There are many other mouths to feed and you cannot only feed yourself." She explained softly.

I dipped my head and fluffed out my fur. "Alright." I mewed, getting up and padding away.

I bet Deathkit and Bloodkit haven't had any real fresh-kill before! Who's bigger and badder now?

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