private A MOTH OF PEACE \ cinderfrost

The sun hung low in the west, preparing to retire for the day as the sky bruised purple. After a fruitful day of productivity- though not much fulfilment, he had to admit- Berryheart was weaving his nest just outside the warriors den, relishing in the cleanness of his breaths. For so long his inhalations had rattled and crackled that he forgot what a breath without stuttered hitch felt like. And it was pleasant... flowery air pulled in his lungs, eyes resisting the urge to flutter closed and fall into slumber right there upon his half-finished nest.

Let it not be said he was not observant, however; for just as that honeyed pull began to tempt him, there was a prickle along his spine. All felt that bug-crawl beneath their skin, the feeling of eyes on one's back. It was an instinctual response, and not always a correct one- but he chose to glance regardless, such were the whims of his inclinations. In the periphery of dulled eyes stood an ashen pelt, one he had known all his life. "Hello," he murmured, speckled head dipping in greeting. She seemed to be... lingering. Was she seeking conversation?

/ @cinderfrost
"Hello." Stars. This was awkward. How should she even approach this situation? She knew Berryheart from when he was a baby, periodically assigned as his kitsitter, but they'd never been particularly close. Their paths never crossed much: Berry was uniquely Berry and forged his own paths forward. Meanwhile, she'd be a silent warrior until tensions called for actions.

And then, upon arriving in ThunderClan, she committed a heinous and unforgivable crime: the silence from the stars and burned paws a punishment for her misdeeds. So, yeah - they'd never really gotten the chance to interact with one another (which most fell on the blue mink's shoulders).

"StarClan has sent signs that your destiny lies within the stars." Great job she scolded herself. That definitely didn't sound weird nor cringy! She cleared her throat, trying to restart, "You are to be my apprentice until you're qualified to take over my position as medicine cat."

That sounded too demanding, didn't it? "You can decline." But could he? StarClan could stalk his dreams unrelentlessly. After all, that's what they'd done to her. Yet, apparently even the stars couldn't forsee the path she'd take. Instead of offering help, they disconnected her from what Hare Whiskers had called her fate, her destiny. "However, I wish to take you to the moonstone before you make your decision."

He felt not the same tension as she, even as the silence following her greeting extended for an era. Ever patient, he awaited what it was she had come to speak to him about- or simply to discover that all she had wanted was to exchange a greeting. As calm as his demeanour remained in waiting, however, it soon fractured slightly at her next words. His destiny was among the stars? As in, StarClan- with the dead? Was this a roundabout way of cryptically warning him he was to die soon?

Her clarification came swift, however, after the clearing of her throat. This destiny that was apparently his was not within the stars themselves, no- but in the communication with them, in the art of healing and interpretation. As the realisation settled in his expression, the shock dissipating once again into unreadable neutrality, slightly-slack crooked jaw closing slowly. Fictive brows furrowed as he stewed upon his words, the only movement across his form the slight flick of his ears upon her assurance that he could decline. Could he, though? Faced with such an opportunity, could he truly refuse?

Obligation had never been something Berryheart was particularly fond of... it was clear in his often tangible boredom when performing tasks he was uninterested in. But this- this was new. Perhaps preordained, but all the same entirely alien to him. And therein lay his problem. He had been so focused on learning all there was to know regarding the life of a warrior, that the idea of knowing everything about the art of medicine had never occurred to him before. Oh, how could he have been so blind! To have ignored this path- to have forgotten to think to pursue it! How would he know all if he refused this path here, now?

Dulled eyes found the lizard-green of the Executioner's, jaw carefully parting after a few notable seconds of pondering silence. "Alright," he murmured, nodding his head, baritone well-enunciated. He had expelled his shock for sake of politeness, and any fumble that might catch his speech was discouraged by his concentration. "Can I eat, before we go?" From what he had heard it was a long journey- longer than most treks, anyway. On a mostly-empty stomach he could not handle it.

Olivine eyes gleamed with the unmistakeable light of interest.
Teal eyes carefully watched Berryheart. Unfortunately, he remained as unreadable as ever. All she could do was wait for him to reject StarClan's decision because why would he want to be stuck with her as a mentor-

"Oh. Uh, yeah. Eat up. It'll be a bit of a trek. We'll have to go around WindClan if there is no one there to escort us." Honeytwist was reasonable, though. "We will begin our travels once the sun is halfway through the sky." If her calculations were correct, that would give them enough time to reach the moonstone before the stars awoke from their slumber. ​