camp GARDEN’S OVERGROWN — camp “guard”

Jul 24, 2022

The sun beats down upon dry grass and a thinning pelt. It’s not a nice day by any means, but someone has to guard camp at all times, and today Crappiepaw has taken on that duty. They aren’t officially assigned to guard the place where the stepping stones meet the island, but they stand there nonetheless, alongside an older warrior who actually seems to have been assigned to do it.

Someone passes by and greets them, and the tortoiseshell frowns deeply. "I’m guarding camp. I’m busy right now." They turn their head, body moving with it, so that they’re facing away from the other cat. Green eyes look up toward the cloudless sky, but only for a moment before they refocus on the landscape before them. "Don’t distract me," he says, clearly already distracted.
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"Guarding camp?"The blue tabby echoes Crappiepaws words. He had only been here a day, these cats strange customs alluded him. "What're you guarding it from?" He asks, inquisitively. I’m the meadow, they had lookout. Not guards. Strange cats came and go as they pleased, though Storms's mother had insisted she knew some of them at least. He did not understand what did these river-dwelling cats have to be afraid of? "Are you afraid the river is going to come up and get ya?" He asks, his nose wrinkling in laughter at his own joke, a smile creeping up on his face as he slowly reaches down into the water with his toes and playfully splashes the other apprentice. This was fun! He had never been around so many cats his own age. Perhaps Crappiepaw would like to play with him? That is, if he stopped acting like he had tasted some bad prey first!
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Guarding was a warriors duty, they're protecting the clan from dangers, such as foxes or badgers and yet...Crappiepaw, one of the sickly figured it was best to help guard which, was an impressive sight to beheld and Storm was quick to begin messing with the tom as her whisker twitched in amusement, joining the two with a sizable fish in her maw before setting it down. "Wow Crappiepaw, that's new for you. If you're interested in guarding maybe I should ask you to guard Forestkit and the others when they're playing" she jested, Storm eagerly attempting to play and amusement flickered onto the apprentice, a rare sight to see now a day, but she was glad to see many out and about and just hope that despite Crappiepaw's guarding, nothing did attacked, worried for the other's well being, something she had begun to get into a habit of doing with all her clanmates.
*:・゚✧☁ ⋯ Gloomkit's imaginary brow curved low at the apprentice, who'd waved off any conversation in lieu of a productive guarding session. She shared the same sentiments as Storm, that the river was guard enough to outwork both Crappiepaw and the guard beside them. After all, it kept her in, and she assumed most normal cats would want to steer clear of getting their fur entirely wet.

Deciding she wanted nothing more than to distract the guard, she bent her head towards him conspiratorially. Her voice came low, as if Frostpaw nor Storm could hear, "But what if you just let them --" A not-so-subtle jerk of her head indicated a warrior sunbathing behind them, who was currently in the act of stretching and heading towards the preypile. "-- through, and they were a spy? Look! They're taking food! Go get them!"
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The apprentice who approaches causes Crappiepaw’s nose to twitch, a wrinkle appearing upon their brow. They don’t hate Stormpaw by any means, but they could do without the distraction that he poses. "Maybe I am guarding it from you," they snark with a quirk of their upper lip, but there’s no bite to their voice. They smile and give an amused snort—only broken by a light, muffled cough. "And I am not," another cough, "not scared of the river. I can fight it off 'f it tries to get me."

As if demonstrating how they would fight off the river, the tortoiseshell smacks at the water Stormpaw has splashed their way. They miss, and their face is soaked with the water. A disgruntled noise leaves their mouth, something between a grunt and a squeak, and they scowl at the blue tabby.

The gray-furred apprentice makes the suggestion that he should guard the kits while they’re playing, and green eyes narrow at her. They spare a glance in Frostpaw’s direction, catching on the name of a particular inky black-furred kit. "Forestkit…" he muses, tilting his head in consideration. She’s a nice kit, even though she responded funny to the compliment Crappiepaw had offered. Does she need any extra guarding? Maybe not, but it would give him an excuse to spend more time with Forestkit and Gloomkit and the other kits. "You are very smart. Maybe I will do that."

Speaking of Gloomkit—she is next to join them, questioning the possibility of allowing spies through. He stares at the child. Blinks once. In a scratchy voice, he hums in response, "They are allowed to eat freshkill. If they are a spy, then they could easily fight me off." They do stare after the warrior, though, as though if they narrow their eyes enough they can burn a hole through the older cat’s back. That’ll teach them to take freshkill without asking a child for permission first.

Smokethroat hears kitten voices rising up but he chooses to ignore them, eyes closed and enjoying the warmth of the sun on a rare and uneventful day in the clan; patrols had gone swiftly and smoothly, hunting had been excellent, the freshkill pile was full and there was a trout waiting for him to claim once he could peel himself off his comfortable perch to do so. Eventually hunger overthrows relaxation and he rises with a stretch, ambling along to the center of camp until he hears a sharp and pitched little 'look!' that makes him falter momentarily.

He feels himself being watched and if he weren't in camp itself he might have felt some degree of alarm at it, instead the tom gave an abrupt sneeze before turning around to face the camp's border and meet the gaze of the exasperated warrior currently sitting guard surrounded by younger cats and kittens. Smokethroat's eyes drop slightly lower to meet Crappiepaw's unaturally intense stare before he pivots about to go padding in their direction, a dismissive flick of his tail offered to the warrior there as he takes his place; food can wait.
"Guarding well are you?" The dark tom asks, tone almost amused but with a degree of seriousness in case the smaller, sickly little tom had something to prove. His orange gaze moves from Frostpaw to Gloomkit and then finally rests on Storm with some curiousity. This was the newcomer, Lightningstone's younger brother though the other tom didn't seem particularly wild about the idea; maybe he just needed time to warm up to it. Sometimes he wished he had siblings nearby and not just a sister in ShadowClan.
"Storm, right? How are you holding up so far in RiverClan?"