Chapter 28-Coercement

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-A Few Days After Chapter 27-

Sage-eye watched as the clan slowly went to sleep. Tonight she had guard duty at the camp entrance. Tonight was the time to make her move. Blazeclan, as stated by Emberstar, has agreed to make war on Lakeclan if Marshclan wills it and a reunited Valleyclan that has a willing leader. I shall be leader once I mentor one of Apple-eye's recently born kits. Until then, Birchstar shall have to be forced to obey my will, and because of Brightwing's help, I shall we be able to swiftly break her.

Time passed. The wind whistled, the crickets chirp, faint rustling in the trees of their branches and prey, and the screeching of owls could be heard. Overhead was a three-quarters Moon, almost a full moon. Sage-eye did a final check to make sure that everyone was asleep. Then she made her move.

Sage-eye quietly walked across the camp to the Chief Rock. Not one sound was made. Carefully, she made her way down the short passageway that led to the Chief Den. Birchstar was snoring, stretched across her moss-covered bracken nest. Sage-eye walked up to her, took out her claws, and laid them across the Vallyclan's Chief's neck.

"Alert anyone," Sage-eye whispered as she saw Birchstar's eyes flicker open and meet her gaze, "And you shall die, for I know that you are on your last life."

"And why should I listen to you, traitor?" Birchstar quietly growled.

This will be as easy as making dirt.  The reason to that," Sage-eye answered, "Is if you kill me if you don't need too, you go to The-Realm-Of-Banishment. I am well aware that I will go there someday, so don't play that trick. And I'm pretty sure that Brightwing will have fun seeing you there with her, seeing as she is already visiting you in your dreams. Let's go out to the forest for a talk, now shall we?"

Sage-eye saw the fear that immediately sparked in Birchstar's eyes. As if she were a ghost, Birchstar soundlessly got up, looking at the ground, and went out of the camp with Sage-eye walking behind her, claws ready at the moments notice. Soon, they were a good enough distance from the camp, so Sage-eye told the Chief to stop.

Birchstar then snapped out of her trance, but her voice trembles with uncertainty and fear. "Want you want, Burnscar?"

Signs of an incompetent and cowardly leader. Sage-eye looked at Birchstar straight in the eye. "You are a coward, Birchstar. You lean to Starktail's will for the so-called protection. of your clan and to preserve your own ego. You enforce the evil ways of the Valleyclan's "worthiness" system. It's time to put a stop to both of these."

"You can't just kill me to be leader." Birchstar coldly said. "And the system is fair!"

"Oh, then how come you are scared of me, a scarred and disabled cat?" Sage-eye retorted as she leaned forward. "I know the rules, so you will simply do as  I say. You will still be the leader, but your orders from me. Soon, I shall become deputy after I mentor a Leaner, for new kits are coming."

"Why should I listen to you?" harshly argued Birchstar.

"I have a few good reasons." Sage-eye calmly replied. "I know more about Starktail then you do and our ancestors support me."

"Then tell my what you know about Starktail?" Birchstar demanded. "Is there a spy among us then?"

"Nice, segue" Sage-eye complimented, "Because Sunclaw is a spy. She ruined my life, taking my future as a Mender. She shall be punished."

"There is one tiny problem with that statement.' Birchstar revealed. "Actually, it was Stonestar, Sandclaw,and I who tricked Sunclaw into doing that to ruin both of your lives!"

Sage-eye's gaze tensed. "Oh no. You only did that because you feared Starktail, and she had already swayed Sunclaw into betraying me. Just another example of Valleyclan's evils and your cowardice. I shall soon provide evidence of her traitorous actions. Now go to sleep and have fun meeting your sister."

"How do you know?" cried out Birchstar. "She torments me every night, trapping me in my sleep! She has twisted you to fit her evils deeds! But I can't kill you! I could not near to be haunted by her in The-Realm-Of-Banishment!"

Sage-eye held up her unsheathed paws again and Birchstar quickly went silent. "I would quiet now if I were you." she suggested. "For you have a reputation to live up and I'm quite sure that your father couldn't bear it if you disappeared."

"You do not know the full truth about Brightwing.' Sage-eye continued on."She may been evil in how she wanted to fix Valleyclan, but she has had lots of time to think it over. She saw potential in me to do her will be rightfully. She has guided me to avoid the mistakes she had made. There may be a few deaths , but it will be for our clan, for future generations. You shall someday learn the whole story, but that day can wait."

"What has she done to you?" Birchstar gasped.

"The past matters no more. It what you will do for me now." Sage-eye said. "Now go and sleep well with Brightwing. I'm sure that you will wake up listening to me. Soon Sunclaw will be a proven traitor and Darktail defeated. There is a new hope for Valleyclan coming soon. Now let's go back to camp, shall we? Tell anyone of this, and well, some things will happen."

As they headed back, Birchstar's gaze stayed affixed to the ground as she smelled of fear. I have no doubts now that she will listen to me. Her mind and soul have been broken. But she will have time to recover once she has done her duty to her clan. I do not like this, but alas I must. I will put her out of her misery after I become deputy and Starktail is defeated. I do not like this, breaking her, but I must do it if Valleyclan is to stand strong with the other clans, so we ca all work together to take done Starktail as last. This is for the good of every ca in very clan.

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