A Patch's Flames is a fan fiction written by FallingPetals.
In a forest full of clearings and a churning river lives a small clan called SwiftClan. These cats are known for their quickness and for their founding leader, Swiftstar. However, recently, there have been many creatures lurking in the darkness, ready to strike and destroy the clan. Patchkit, a tortoiseshell she-cat, born along with her two brothers, is just a normal kit living in SwiftClan...or is she? Patchkit may have a destiny far greater than any other's cats destiny before her. She must blaze through the forest in her clan's time of need, or die down with it.
Leader: Bumblestar - Silver tabby tom with a white chest and paws and amber eyes
Deputy: Foxcloud - Ginger tabby tom with white paws with amber eyes (Mentoring Duskpaw)
Medicine Cat: Ivylight - Light gray she-cat with green eyes
Warriors: Blossomleg - Dark ginger tabby she-cat with a white tail-tip and green eyes
Hawknose - Dark brown tabby tom with yellow eyes
Swallowstrike - Gray tom with green eyes
Beetletail - Dark gray and white tom with a black tail and yellow eyes (Mentoring Ashpaw)
Shadepetal - Gray tabby she-cat with amber eyes
Grayleap - Light gray tabby she-cat with amber eyes
Tawnystripe - Golden brown tabby tom with green eyes
Goldenpelt - Golden tabby and white she-cat with amber eyes
Apprentices: Duskpaw - Dark gray tabby she-cat with blue eyes
Ashpaw - Gray tom with amber eyes
Queens: Frostpool - Light gray she-cat with icy blue eyes, mother of Foxcloud's kits (Barkkit - Brown tabby tom with white paws and amber eyes, and Jaykit - Gray she-cat with blue eyes)
Sorrelflower - Tortoiseshell and white she-cat with green eyes, mother of Tawnystripe's kits (Tallkit - Light brown tabby tom with long legs and green eyes, Patchkit - Tortoiseshell she-cat with amber eyes, and Rowankit - Ginger and white tabby tom with green eyes)
Elders: Shrewfur - Dusty brown tom with a graying muzzle and amber eyes
The sun was held high in the somewhat cloudy sky, brightening the forest with its dazzling light. The towering oak trees and flowering fields were filled with the occasional chirping of a cardinal, which was perched in a low branch, as the Greenleaf air began to warm up. Suddenly, the red bird took off as the crackling of a stick startled it. Two felines, one with golden brown tabby fur, and another with tortoiseshell and white fur, strolled side by side through the thicket of trees into a small clearing full of daisies and marigold. The she-cat seemed strangely plump compared to the tom, whom was now staring into her leaf-green eyes.
"Remember how we used to play here as apprentices?" the tabby tom asked, his own light green eyes twinkling as he began to remember something.
The she-cat replied with, "Yes, Tawnystripe. Remember that night you asked me to be your mate?"
"I would never forget it." Tawnystripe licked the tortoiseshell on her muzzle as she let out a purr. "I bet our kits will be beautiful, Sorrelflower."
"About the kits," Sorrelflower sighed as she glanced down at the ground, "Shouldn't I be at camp? Ivylight said my kits are due any day now."
"Don't worry," Tawnystripe reassured as his mate looked up at him. "That shouldn't happen, and if it does, the border patrol is out. They could get Ivylight."
"Well, I feel like they're coming soon, it's just-"
"Stop worrying," Tawnystripe meowed as he closed his eyes. He placed his tail on his mate's haunches as he said this. "You'll be fine. The kits will be fine. Nothing is going to happen."
"Well, okay," Sorrelflower said, still with a bit of uncertainty in her voice. She then leaned in and placed her cheek on Tawnystripe's muzzle. Tawnystripe closed his eyes and purred for a moment. Suddenly, the tom heard a screech pound against his ear. He flickered his eyes open just to see Sorrelflower fall onto the ground with another shriek.
"The kits...! They're coming!" the queen exclaimed before she let out another yowl of pain. Tawnystripe stared in shock and then snapped back into reality.
"I'll be right back!" He yowled before turning and dashing off into the trees. "I promise!" Tawnystripe began racing through the forest, sill hearing the shrieks of his mate in the distance. The smell of cat and water began to hit his nostrils and the tom began to run even faster. He burst into a clearing where a stream ran. There were three cats, all of which raised their heads as Tawnystripe bolted toward them. The golden brown tabby screeched to a halt and stood there, panting.
"Tawnystripe, what's going on?" Foxcloud, the clan deputy, asked calmly to the panting warrior.
"Sorrelflower...kits...herbs..." Tawnystripe panted in an effort to regain his breath. "Sorrelflower's having her kits!"
"What?!" Beetletail, another cat on the patrol exclaimed before looking down at a small, gray tom standing beside him. "Ashpaw, go fetch Ivylight!" The apprentice nodded his head and took off toward camp.
"Come on, we better make sure she's alright," Foxcloud meowed before dashing off into the trees. Tawnystripe pushed ahead of the two cats to show them where to go. Beetletail tried to run ahead of the two, but he just kept trailing behind. The wails of his mate got stronger and the patrol burst into the meadow with Sorrelflower in it.
"Sorrelflower! Are you okay?" Tawnystripe panted.
The she-cat looked up to him and meowed, "I'm fine-" She was suddenly caught off by her own screech of pain.
"Here, bite down on this," Foxcloud meowed as he ran over toward a stick the tom grasped it in his jaws and ran back over. The queen quickly yanked it out of his mouth and bit down into it. Beetletail gave his deputy a glare and looked back at the queen. Tawnystripe saw her contractions ripple her fur as the queen bit down harder into the stick.
"Come on, Sorrelflower, you can do it!" The tom yowled.
Suddenly, Sorrelflower let out a screech as a tiny bundle slid out onto the grass. Foxcloud dashed over and bit open its sack and began to lick it. The kit let out a gasp as its lungs filled with air, but Foxcloud kept licking it to make it dry.
"It's a tom," Foxcloud announced as he stopped licking, revealing a light brown tabby tom with long, slender legs. The cats had no time to celebrate before Sorrelflower's scream ripped the air. Another bundle slipped out and Tawnystripe rushed over toward it. He bit open the sack, just like how Foxcloud did, and began to rasp his tongue over it. It let out a gasp as he finished licking it dry. Tawnystripe examined his kit and saw sleek, tortoiseshell fur covering its fragile body.
"It's a she-cat!" Tawnystripe exclaimed, pride in his voice. One last shriek came from Sorrelflower and one last bundle came out. Beetletail padded over and crouched. He nipped the sack open and immediately spit something out.
"That tastes awful!" the warrior complained.
"Don't complain, Beetletail," Foxcloud ordered. Beetletail grumbled something under his breath and reluctantly began to lick the kit. The warrior stopped once the kit let out a gasp. That kit was smaller than the others, probably the runt of the litter.
"Another tom," Beetletail sighed as he tried to get the taste out of his tongue. Suddenly, Ivylight and Ashpaw dashed into the clearing.
"I heard Sorrelflower was having kits, and I came as soon as I could, and-" Ivylight stopped in her tracks as she saw the bundles of fur that the toms were now moving over to their mother's belly. The kits began to suckle as they felt the queen's warmth.
"Two toms and a she-cat," Sorrelflower purred as she looked up at the medicine cat.
"That's wonderful, but you should eat these," the she-cat meowed as she placed some borage leaves down. Tawnystripe watched as his mate ate the bitter leaves without complaining.
"Your kits are beautiful," Foxcloud meowed.
"I agree," Ashpaw said.
"Thanks," Tawnystripe and Sorrelflower meowed in unison.
"We'll let you name them," Ivyflight meowed as she and the other cats backed away and sat down. Tawnystripe felt nervous as he felt the responsibility of naming the kits.
"Why don't you name the first one?" the tom asked his mate.
"Sure," Sorrelflower meowed as she looked at her son. "He has long legs, so he might be tall. We'll name him Tallkit."
"Good name," Tawnystripe purred as he looked at the tortoiseshell. "She's covered in patches, I guess I'll call her...Patchkit."
"I like that name," Sorrelflower meowed as she strained to see her last kit, which was a ginger and white tabby tom. "He reminds me of rowan berries, so he'll be Rowankit."
"Tallkit, Patchkit, and Rowankit," Tawnystripe purred the names of his kits out loud. "They're perfect."
"Shouldn't their eyes be open by now?"
Patchkit was forced to listen to the constant bickering between her mother, Sorrelflower, and Frostpool about when she and Rowankit were to open her eyes. "I mean, Tallkit already opened his eyes yesterday."
Patchkit heard her mother sigh at the other queen's words and then reply, "Yes, but my kits will open their eyes when they're ready."
"Well, they're obviously not as strong as my kits," Frostpool bragged on. "Barkkit and Jaykit opened their eyes a day after they were born."
How long are they going to go on? Patchkit thought to herself as she let out a small sigh.
"It's been a quarter-moon, Sorrelflower," Frostpool said, her voice seeming to get closer to her. "You should take them to Ivyflight."
Patchkit heard her mother sigh and then reply with, "My kits are fine, Frostpool. They'll open their eyes when it's their time."
Yeah! Patchkit thought to herself. What she said!
"Whatever, my kits will always be stronger."
"Mom," a small voice came from a distance, "Stop talking about me please."
"Jaykit, this has nothing to do with you," Frostpool meowed, "go play with Barkkit."
"Barkkit doesn't want to play with me. He says playing is for 'little kits'."
"I'll be right there," Frostpool meowed. Patchkit heard her mutter something under her breath, but didn't catch what she said. "I'll be back." Patchkit heard footsteps fade away as the queen padded away. Suddenly, something tapped the kit on her side. Patchkit lifted up her head and recognized the cat's smell as Tallkit, her older brother, poking her with his paw.
"Patchkit, open your eyes! Everything's great!" Tallkit encouraged. "Mama won't let me play with Barkkit or Jaykit until you or Rowankit open your eyes."
"Tallkit, leave your sister alone," Sorrelflower ordered, "She doesn't want to open her eyes right now."
But I do want to open my eyes! Patchkit thought to herself as her brother trailed away. It must be great, like what Tallkit said.
Patchkit heard her stomach growl at her and the kit realized she was hungry. She crawled around in the darkness until her paws trended on something fuzzy. A low growl from underneath her indicated that the she-kit had accidentally stepped on the tail of her brother, Rowankit. She backed out of the way, but tumbled down as she did. Patchkit let out a small cry as she flailed her paws around uselessly to turn off of her side.
Help! she thought in her mind, too busy mewing to actually say it. Suddenly, something nudged her a bit and brought the kit back to her feet. Patchkit immediately recognized it as her mother's muzzle. The small kit staggered blindly over toward the smell and licked the queen's nose. Sorrelflower just responded with a purr and moved her head away. Patchkit crawled quickly over toward the smell of her mother and flopped down next to her warm stomach.
"You'll make a great warrior someday," Sorrelflower complimented as Patchkit began to suckle for her sweet, warm milk, "You're brave. You're not afraid to take risks, but you're not afraid to ask for help either."
"What about me?" Tallkit asked, which caused the queen to chuckle.
"You too, Tallkit," Sorrelflower purred.
Patchkit stopped suckling and curled into her mother's stomach. As the kit began to fall asleep, she heard another cat enter the den and Tallkit exclaim something, but all of the noises began to become obscure as she drifted off to sleep. The kit let out a small yawn and fell into a dreamless sleep.
Patchkit woke up the next day to something landing on top of her, causing her to growl. She realized it was Tallkit, whom must have tripped over her, and tried to scramble out from under his weight. As she rolled onto her back, her eyes flickered open for the first time. The den was so huge! It was a dark den with mud-covered walls around them. However, the only thing that Patchkit saw was a light brown tabby with kitten blue eyes staring back into her's.
"Mama! Patchkit opened her eyes!" Tallkit exclaimed as he looked toward his left. He got off of his sister just as a huge, tortoiseshell and white she-cat padded over and looked down at Patchkit with affectionate, green eyes.
"You finally opened your eyes, Patchkit," the queen purred with pride.
Patchkit? I heard that name, but I never knew it was my name!' the kit thought to herself as she rolled over onto her belly. I like it.
"Mama?" Patchkit said a bit slowly as she glanced up at the queen again.
"Good job," Sorrelflower purred, "I'm Mama." Patchkit tried to get to her paws, but stumbled back down. Sorrelflower grasped her by the scruff and lifted her back up.
"Can we see camp now, please?" Tallkit begged.
"I want to see camp!" Patchkit exclaimed, a bit slow.
"Alright, you can go, but don't lea-" Sorreflower was about to finish her sentence when Tallkit and Patchkit raced out of the nursery. As they went up the tunnel to the entrance, Patchkit stumbled a bit, but she was getting better at walking. Tallkit had already sprang out of the entrance by the time Patchkit got to the top. The kit dug her paws into the grass above the hole and dragged herself up out of the den.
Patchkit's jaw nearly dropped as she saw how huge the camp was. It was a huge dip in the ground, which was surrounded by towering oak trees. Some of the dens were burrows, like the nursery, but some were made out of brambles, sticks, and other plants that were connected. The she-kit glanced upwards and saw puffy, white clouds floating through the clear blue sky. The sun began to burn her eyes and Patchkit looked back at the camp again. There were a few groups of cats sitting in the camp, either sharing tongues or having conversations with one another. The cats didn't seem to take notice of the two kits, whom were now standing side by side.
"Woah," was the only word that managed to escape Patchkit's maw.
"I know, right?" Tallkit exclaimed, the siblings glancing at each other as he spoke. "Let's go see the apprentices!" The tabby tom raced off before giving Patchkit a chance to speak.
Who are the apprentices? Patchkit thought to herself as she tried to keep up with her brother. The two kits came to a halt in front of two, young-looking cats, whom were eating some strange creature in front of them. One of the cats, a gray tom with soft amber eyes, glanced up from his meal and looked at the kits.
"Hello!" the tom exclaimed with a flick of his tail, "I'm Ashpaw, one of the apprentices."
"I'm Tallkit!" the light brown tabby greeted as he walked up to the two cats.
"I'm Patchkit." Patchkit padded alongside her brother and stared up at Ashpaw as she introduced herself, not as slow as the last time she spoke. He seems nice, she thought to herself as Ashpaw looked over at the other cat, whom was a dark gray tabby with gloomy, dark blue eyes.
"This is Duskpaw, my sister," Ashpaw meowed as the other apprentice glanced down at the kits. Patchkit saw no emotion in her expression, but saw pain in her piercing eyes. Duskpaw just glanced away at something else.
"Hi," Patchkit meowed, lifting up a paw to the tabby apprentice, trying to get her attention, but to no avail.
"Um," Ashpaw meowed awkwardly, "Why don't you guys visit Shrewfur? He might tell you a story."
"Okay!" Tallkit exclaimed before dashing off again. He came running back and asked, "Where's Shrewfur?"
Ashpaw chuckled a bit and meowed, "He's in the den on the right of the nursery, where you guys live."
"Thanks!" the two kits chorused before Tallkit took off again.
"Bye!" Patchkit meowed as she turned away and ran after her brother. She glanced over her shoulder quickly as she ran and saw Ashpaw staring at her while Duskpaw was just grooming her paw. As the two kits rushed toward the den made up of brambles, a pale gray she-cat with moss in her mouth stepped out of the entrance. She spat out the old moss onto the ground and stared down at the two kits.
"Are you Shrewfur?" asked Tallkit, his pupils getting wider as he asked. Patchkit just looked up at the she-cat with her kitten blue eyes.
Is that who Shrewfur is? the kit thought to herself.
"No, I am Ivylight, the medicine cat," the light gray she-cat replied, "Shrewfur is asleep and doesn't want to be bothered and your mom told me to get you. So off to the nursery you go." The medicine cat began to nudge the kits back to their den.
"Hey! Hey!" Patchkit just kept repeating the same phrase as she was pushed along. She heard her brother say something like 'Aw, come on!' and 'I don't wanna go!'
Who does she think she is? Patchkit thought to herself as she was finally pushed inside of the nursery. The small kit saw her mother with another queen and two kits, whom were standing beside her. Patchkit reluctantly crawled over to Sorrelflower along with Tallkit. The kit focused her eyes on a ginger tabby and white kit, whom was even smaller than her, that was staring at her with half-opened eyes.
"Hello, Ivylight," Sorrelflower greeted the medicine cat.
"Hi, sis!" Frostpool, the other queen, exclaimed. The two she-cats looked exactly alike - except for their different eye colors. Frostpool had ice blue eyes, while Ivylight's eyes were more of an emerald green. The two she-cats began to get into a conversation, but Patchkit just ignored it as she let out a yawn, tired from exploring camp for the first time. The kit flopped down at the same time as Tallkit and the two fell into a deep, dreamless sleep.