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   Chapter 18 How to Conquer Fear (Malec) (Climon)

City of Ice and Fire By Grace Estellar Characters: 38190

Updated: 2019-09-21 21:52


*****Goldenclaw's POV*****

Goldenclaw narrowly dodges a swipe to the ear, his head jerking back just in the nick of time. Leaf fall is set in motion now so even the Sandy Hollow is covered in piles of leaves. He and Violetpaw had moved them before they'd starting training.

The companions they'd brought along were sitting off to the side. Comfreyleaf's kits are underneath one of the beech trees in the hollow, watching with rapt attention as the mentor and apprentice trained.

Sandkit, Cloudkit and Tumblekit were not much in the way of helpful back when they were clearing out piles of brittle leaves. Sandkit had been too busy pouncing on the dead foliage, and if not for her wriggling body he might have mistaken her for a leaf. Tumblekit and Cloudkit are much easier to find, though he supposes that will change for the white tom kit especially when leaf bare comes to blanket the forest floor in snow.

"Go Goldenclaw!" Cloudkit and Sandkit's squeaky voices chorused.

"Go Violetpaw!" Tumblekit cheers.

Goldenclaw shoots a playful look at his apprentice. "Looks like they like me more." He says with a grin.

"That's because you let them go out of camp. You spoil them." Violetpaw points out with a huff.

The tortoiseshell she-cat is practicing quick jab moves today per her mentor's request. Goldenclaw is impressed by how fast the apprentice is learning, her aptitude for warrior skills not dissimilar to a certain she-cat he likes. No no no it should be liked.

Goldenclaw could not bring himself to say he doesn't like Sparkpaw. Saying such an untruth would only serve to twist his stomach in knots and make his heartache. He had thought that with distance from the fiery she-cat he would be capable to forget her for the time being, but he was wrong.

The heart really does grow fonder in abstinence.

So much had been going on lately, and yet the golden tabby still found himself yearning for Sparkpaw. If he wasn't thinking of her during the day then he was dreaming of her in the night. This should be disconcerting, but Goldenclaw just ends up finding it comforting.

He misses Sparkpaw just as he misses Arrowheart, though at least the runs connecting him to his adoptive brother allowed him to know they're alright. Arrowheart wouldn't let anything happen to Sparkpaw, he'd let himself get hurt before that happened. He had been feeling a bit

Off this afternoon however, as though some part of him was upset for no apparent reason.

It must be from our bond, though I don't know if it's because Arrowheart is grumpy or not feeling well. Navigating the parabatai bond is an interesting debacle, like two cats trying to do charades at the same time in a weird game.

Feelings and emotions would come and go as they pleased in what felt like a wild gust of wind. Goldenclaw suspects that this emotional maelstrom is even worse for Arrowheart, as the golden warrior often displays his emotions more openly. Luckily, his brother doesn't mind, instead taking it in stride.

But that's a part of what being parabatai is all about.

Goldenclaw and Arrowheart are already so in sync with each other, so he suspects it's only going to be a matter of time before they grow accustomed to it. With Arrowheart out on a quest however, that accustoming has been put on hold until the black tom returns.

Hopefully that's soon, there is so much I have to tell him. Who knows how Arrowheart will react to the news of Frostfang attacking the Silent Brothers, or Vultureclaw's squandering of the approachability of Blossomstar in camp. And what about my powers? How will he feel about me making such huge leaps?

These things Goldenclaw did not have an answer for.

"Hahaha got you!" Violetpaw yowls triumphantly as she knocks his hind legs out from under him with one solid swipe. Goldenclaw lands on his stomach with an oomf. The golden tabby warrior hadn't realized he lost focus of the match, to trained on his own thoughts.

"Aww." Sandkit groans. "I wanted him to win!"

"Me too!" Cloudkit squeaks. The little white fluff ball leaps on top of Goldenclaw, nipping at his neck fur with small teeth. The feeling was only a tiny bit painful, and was ticklish. "Why. Didn't. You. Win?" He says between nips.

"Well I'm glad Violetpaw won." Tumblekit says loyally.

Violetpaw blinks happily at the young tom kit. The two were surprisingly close despite their age difference, and Goldenclaw wonders if they could be mates someday. Then again, he wasn't the best judge of mates so far, what with liking his apparent sister and all.

And then there's Arrowheart who I thought would be with Dawnpaw....and now she's a Medicine cat. I wonder who my parabatai will end up with now. He tries to think of a good she-cat for his brother to be mates with....and ends up coming up surprisingly blank. Well, blank might not exactly be the right word here. One cat does pop into Goldenclaw's mind, oddly enough though he isn't sure why.

Patchfur.

Arrowheart and Patchfur had been spending a lot of time together in the past few moons. Goldenclaw had thought his parabatai's obsession over the former MagicClan tom was a bit strange, though he wasn't about to question it right to the tall black tom's face. He trusted Arrowheart to make the right decisions.

Just as he trusts me to keep an eye on Vultureclaw while he's gone. Still, Patchfur also took a liking to Arrowheart too, the closeness of the pair was something Goldenclaw was unsure as to whether or not he would ever understand. And who knew how much closer the two toms might be getting now that they were on a mission together. A flash of jealously worms it's way into his gut that the golden tabby Shadowhunter steadily refuses to acknowledge.

Goldenclaw ignores the little kitten on his back momentarily to rise onto his paws, shaking sand off his pelt as he goes, the grit falling to the ground in tiny clumps of white yellow filaments. Cloudkit lets out a squeal as the warrior's body gets up from the ground. White paws clutch fiercely to fluffy golden fur, trying his best to hang on tight to his spot atop the warrior's back. Golden eyes regard Violetpaw with mild happiness.

"Good job. Though I won't be taking it so easy on you next time." He tells her.

"Thanks! And I don't think you were this time." She sasses back, her multicolored tail twirling behind her like a party streamer shot out of a confetti cannon.

Goldenclaw rolls his eyes at that, but doesn't deign her sass with a response. "As for you, " He swivels his head back to look at Cloudkit. "I guess I'll just have to give you a badger ride to make up for it."

"Yay! Badger ride! Badger ride!" Cloudkit cheers.

"No fair! We want badger rides too." Tumblekit protests. The brown furred tom kit presses his head into Goldenclaw's leg, a gesture of wanting to get on. Sandkit quickly joins her brother in pressing against the warrior.

"Okay okay." He concedes. "Climb on." Goldenclaw stoops down so Sandkit and Tumblekit can scramble onto his back with squeals of delight.

The three kits are still young enough that Goldenclaw can bear all of their weight at once. In a few moons the three kittens would be much too big for him to keep this up, so Goldenclaw played with Tumblekit, Sandkit and Cloudkit whatever chance he got.

The golden tabby had taken it upon himself to watch after Dustcloud's three children. It's what he would've wanted. Comfreyleaf was happy to have some help watching the three little ones. The queen would take the free time to rest and recover.

As the only queen with kits in the Nursery currently, Featherflight and Dawnpaw would check on her quite often, just as they would with Littlebird...and surprisingly Silvermoon. The gray tabby she-cat had been having some odd stomach pains as of late, much to every cats' concern. Badgerstripe would also be doting on his mate too, worried for her welfare.

"Violetpaw, please hunt on your way back to camp and see to the elders." He murmurs.

"Sure. Will that be all for today?" Violetpaw asks, her purple eyes wide and luminous.

Goldenclaw could tell even at this young age that the tortoiseshell is shaping up to be just like her mother. Both she-cat's have a narrow gait with a slim frame, their tails long and speckled with ginger, black and a streak of white. The rest of their fur was coated in a similar fashion, though Violetpaw has much more black fur compared to her mother, like some sort of dark mirror.

Goldenclaw glances up at the sky to see the sun making its descent into the earth. "Yes. I'll see you later. Got to get these three troublemakers home before feeding time." He then begins to swing around and growl as he stomps around, much to the kits' excitement. He heads through the foliage toward camp, leaving Violetpaw behind.

"Badger ride! Badger ride!" They chant.

"Oh, I'll give you kits a badger ride." He gruffly says before letting out a mock roar.

"Ah! Badger!" Cloudkit yelps as Goldenclaw nearly swings him off his back. The white kitten's sharp claws sink in even deeper into Goldenclaw's scruff to hold on tight.

"Hahaha you can't knock me off dopey badger." Sandkit yowls as she manages to hang on when the warrior does yet another hard stomp after leaping over a particularly fat tree stump.

"Don't tell the badger that Sandkit! He'll eat us." Tumblekit says worriedly. The biggest of the three kits is stationed on Goldenclaw's lower back towards his golden striped tail. The warrior can feel small claws digging into the knobs of his spine.

"Ha ha ha Tumblekit is right." He imitates a gruff badger voice as he arches his back up and down with the lumbering speed of log floating in a stream. "I'm a ferocious badger!" He roars.

"Noooooooo!" Cloudkit yells as Goldenclaw shakes yet again.

The kits are squealing chatter boxes behind him, having the time of their lives. The thorn tunnel of the camp entrance looms up in front of him now as he shakes one more time before coming to a halt in camp to let the kits hop off.

In a flurried tumble Sandkit, Cloudkit and Tumblekit scramble down his back and dart off to the Nursery where he can see Comfreyleaf waiting for them. He follows behind them albeit at a much slower pace.

The camp is filled with lively activity as sharing tongues time takes place. Goldenclaw can see Ripplefur and Littlebird pressed close together, the two cats marveling at the She-cat's ever swelling white flanks. Swallowsong, Palenose and Specklefoot are chatting over a half-eaten rabbit by the Warrior's Den.

Stripepaw and Mousepaw practice stalking maneuvers on a fallen pine cone, tails twitching in the air like swaying reeds. Dawnpaw trots over to the Elder's den with a leaf wrap bundle clamped tightly in her jaws, the smell of mouse bile making Goldenclaw's nose wrinkle as she passes by. Smokepaw darts after her hurriedly, the young tom carrying his own bundle. Goldenclaw envies neither of them for taking care of the elders' ticks.

"Were they well behaved Goldenclaw?" The queen asks when he reaches her, the she-cat's brown eyes focused on the three little ones darting inside the Nursery.

"Yes they were great. Sandkit, Cloudkit and Tumblekit stayed in the Hollow with us the whole time." He tells her.

Comfreyleaf smiles at that. "That's good. I'm glad they've learned not to run off at this point."

Both of them could remember last week whe

. The animal is clearly tired of the waiting game. Belatedly, Arrowheart recognizes the streaking pink purple sky, a signal that the sun is descending below the horizon as it sets.

"What is it Arrowheart?" His boyfriend asks.

"Dating you is amazing. The way I feel for you is unlike how I've felt for anyone before." He begins seriously, his blue eyes boring into Patchfur's golden green with complete sincerity. "I love-"

Patchfur, who seemed to realize his train of thought places a paw over his mouth, effectively silencing him. Simon stares at Arrowheart with his mouth agape and amber eyes wide. Sparkpaw on the other paw doesn't look the slightest bit surprised by Arrowheart's confession, a grin curving her lips.

"Wait. So you two are dating?" Simon asks surprised. "I thought something was going on between you two but I didn't imagine it was that."

Arrowheart tries to tell Simon that yes, he and Patchfur are dating, but the bicolored warlock's paw keeps him from getting any words out. A soft blue hue of magic light prances around Patchfur's forearms for a few moments, the mesmerizing light drawing his attention to it and away from his line of thinking.

He's just so magical.

The thought makes him sigh happily. Yes, he really does love his boyfriend. Without the strange jumble of emotions running around in his head Arrowheart could see that as clear as a bright sunny day. The warm feeling makes him feel as though he's drifting weightless into the sky, so light-hearted and free. The Shadowhunter is unsure if he's ever felt this way before.

"I'm not surprised at all." Sparkpaw said amusedly.

Patchfur shrugs. "I suppose we are pretty obvious." The light around the warlock dies as he retracts his paw from Arrowheart's muzzle. Despite the ginger and black paw having partially blocked his airways, the young warrior finds he misses the feel of Patchfur on him. That feeling also carries over to the lack of magic in the air surrounding the former MagicClan tom.

"Hey. Why did you stop? You know I love your magic." Arrowheart pouts petulantly, displeased. Sparkpaw bites back a snicker that he could care less for. Instead he notes with glee the tinge of pink blush blooming on Patchfur's face. He had been unsure if he would ever manage to get the warlock to blush. And now I have, he thinks triumphantly.

"Now now that's not important right now." Patchfur gestured to the barking dog still below. "You have the fearless rune, so tell us how we're supposed to get around the dog."

Arrowheart tilts his head speculatively for a few seconds. Normally, the Shadowhunter would have a well-thought out plan in mind. Today however, his mind was running on different cylinders to give him a brand new idea. One that would likely be considered much more dangerous.

"Leave the dog to me. I'll have it running scared in a matter of minutes." He boasts confidently.

"Wait what? What do you mean by-" Arrowheart doesn't listen to Simon finish his question. The Shadowhunter darts over to the edge of the white board before leaping off, his claws outstretched at the dog's back. All the while adrenaline pulses through him with the speed of an electric train.

*****Patchfur's POV*****

Patchfur, Sims and Sparkpaw watch with horror as Arrowheart leaps off to the board. The Shadowhunter lands squarely on the dog's back, the barking animal letting out a growl of surprise as Arrowheart's weight lands on top of him.

"Arrowheart no!" Patchfur shouts, fear flooding his veins.

His cry falls on deaf ears as his boyfriend begins the battle with the ferocious creature. The warlock knows that the younger tom is a well-trained warrior, but he can't bare to watch his future mate wait what?... his boyfriend die at the deadly incisors of that canine. And so golden green eyes slam shut, his body trembling with fear.

HISSSS. BARK BARK. YELP.

The sounds of the scuffle continue on. Patchfur wishes he could cast a silencing spell on his ears so he wouldn't have to listen to Arrowheart getting torn apart. He finds himself unable to move however, his body too numb with shock. A few minutes pass, not one of them does he open his eyes, even with Silo's murmuring and Sparkpaw's gasping. Eventually it is Sparkpaw's voice that makes him open his eyes again.

"By the Angel! Arrowheart's winning. Look Patchfur look." He can feel the ginger apprentice nudging him sharply in the side. Hesitantly the warrior opens his eyes to find a scene he'd never expected to see.

Unsurprisingly, blood was splattered all over the ground, but shockingly enough none of it seems to be Arrowheart's. His boyfriend must have bit and scratched the dog in several places. Patchfur can see several injuries on the dangerous dog: a badly torn ear rest on its left side, a deep scratch is placed with special ferocity over the dog's right eye, several clumps of fur are missing along the dog's flanks. From a few tail lengths away Arrowheart stands covered in blood and panting heavily, the fearless rune a beacon of light on his shoulder.

"Never ever come near my boyfriend or my patrol again, do you hear me mutt?!" Arrowheart yowls before tackling the dog to the floor. The dog writhes weakly underneath him, the once ferocious monster of an animal cowering underneath Arrowheart's fearless persona.

Whimper. Whimper. Whiiiiiiinnnnnnee. (Idk how describe how these noises actually sound...so y'all use your imagination)

The noises must have satisfied Arrowheart, as the black tom steps off the dog. The injured animal proceeds to run off into the night, its tail tucked tightly between its legs as it limps out of the alleyway. Only once Patchfur and Sparkpaw and Sharkbait are sure the dog is gone do they leap down to join their blood clad companion whom the fearless rune seems to finally be wearing off for.

"What....what in the world did I just do?" Arrowheart asks him, staring down at his blood soaked paws in confusion. Patchfur quickly checks his boyfriend over before responding. He's pleased to find that the young warrior has no actual injuries, so only exhaustion weighed Arrowheart down.

"You saved us and you looked hot while doing it." Patchfur tells him easily. Arrowheart blushes bright red at the praise, unsure how to react to such words.

"How would you know? You only watched at the end." Storybrook commented.

Patchfur rolls his eyes at the vampire he can't remember the name of. "I didn't have to watch the whole fight to now my boyfriend looked hot." He responds.

"Wait....they....they know about us?" Arrowheart asks. "Did I say something? I can't really remember?"

"You said a lot of things." Sparkpaw tells her mentor. "But it's not like Simon and I couldn't have guessed you two are dating."

Arrowheart casts a sheepish glance at Patchfur, which the bicolored warlock finds himself returning with a grin. "There's nothing to be ashamed of Arrowheart.

"R-really?" He looks at Sparkpaw and the vampire. "You guys don't mind?"

Stone shakes his head. "Of course not. Love is love after all."

Patchfur is happy to see those words have a calming effect on his boyfriend. The black warrior seems to sag in place now, his shoulders drooping as his eyelids began to hang low. The fight really must've taken something out of the Shadowhunter. He's about to say they need to find some shelter for the night (there's no way Arrowheart can continue on in this condition...plus it's already night time) but another voice joins the fray that cuts him off. A voice that sounds vaguely familiar to the warlock.

"Arrowpaw, is that you?"

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