private I LOVED YOU LIKE THE SUN [ confession ]

( ) there's a foreign chill in the air, something foreboding and dangerous. it looms over everything she does now, and she takes a strange comfort in it, despite how ill advisable that may be. the leaves on the willows begin their dance of color, from verdant to golden, now hinting at red, signaling the changing of the seasons, the rising of the tide. there are long dark moons ahead- truly, one should be grateful for the softness of leaf-fall. yet, even as the world beckons change with every new hue, every fallen pine needle and sprinkling of acorns, the smoke warrior stubbornly remains the same. she is stoic in her daily tasks, the attempt to close herself off from the growing darkness of the world leaving her emptier than before.

it goes like this: she's a child who looses everything, just to meet her true family. she's a grown feline who looses everything just to find those she'll end up caring about. she's a mother, a sister, a mentor, a friend. she is all of these things and she feels like she's loosing herself. stretched thin by what she perceives as her rightful duties, the lead warrior has taken a turn for the worse. it's been a while coming, of course, but spiderfall's fall from grace has pushed her over the edge. there is little trace of the formerly optimistic femme as she stalks into camp, a shadow in the darkening twilight. as her evening patrol disperses around her, the feline takes stock of the fresh-kill pile, merely scraps after many warriors have gone to bed. with a soft sigh, she turns, trotting back out into the pale dusk.

her paws guide her to the river, as they most often do, and she sits for a moment, gazing out across the trickling expanse and trying to remember the last time she slept well. likely when poppysplash had shared her nest those days ago. despite the embarrassment upon waking up, willowroot feels no shame with the snow splattered molly. sitting on the pebbly shore, moss hued eyes narrow as she focuses on the water, paws poised to hunt. it's her duty after all. it's what she's good for.


  • Love
paranoia wasn't something foreign to the molly. she worried, and worried, and that wasn't something she could help. she wanted her to be safe. she wanted them to be happy but after their last discussion, she wasn't sure. poppysplash didn't worry about anyone. she didn't even worry about herself, so ready to jump into danger without thinking of the consequences, but here she was, worrying about willowroot. oh, how the woman lit up her world. she used to see the world so dimly. everything was wrong. the trees and reeds whispered with thoughts of her death hanging within them. every secret was about her. she knew it, and she couldn't deny it. it made her on edge. her mother had once told her that friends were useless. they got close to you, only to stab you right in your chest, and twist their claws so deep as you looked up in disbelief. she believed the deranged woman... until willowroot. willowroot showed her true friendship, and true kindness. to this day, she didn't understand what she did to deserve it. surely she didn't. but their fate was intertwined, written in the stars before they'd even known it. willowroot was her soul mate.

maybe thats why she sat so worried. she watched the nightly patrol, and after days of little to no sleep, it was no surprise that poppysplash was awake. she eagerly stands, waiting for her friend to approach, but they never did. they walked right back out, and her nose twitched with a snort. she shook out her pelt and quickly followed the other, slowing her trot to stand beside willowroot.

"willowroot... what are you doing? you've barely gotten any sleep. you probably should get some sleep."

i'm worried about you, my beloved. please just take some time for yourself. you can rest. stars know you deserve some rest.
( ) tufted ears barely twitch when the pebbles rustle behind them. the midnight femme knows who's here- they've expected it from a mile away, but it doesn't mean that her presence won't send a chill down their spine. "poppy," she murmurs, letting the shiver trail across their body. they look away from the river, neck craned to take in their friend, and in this moment, the woman is breathtaking. there is soft moonlight beginning to crest the horizon. it glints across the water, setting her features aglow- dappled snow and ash grey gleam silver. truly, poppysplash is etherial, frozen in time between sunset and midnight.

"i'm fishing," they answer her question, although somewhere inside they know it's not the answer the woman is looking for. "the snow is coming soon, and the clan has a lot of kits and they need food." their words are short, clipped, as if any longer explanation will drag something heavy out of them. "i'm not tir-" jaws stretch in a yawn, snapping shut fast. internally they hiss. their body has given them away. "-ed. that yawn was fake. i'm fine poppy, don't worry about me."

there is a deep exhaustion in their bones that willowroot had tried to ignore for a time. it creeps along their nerves, dragging their muscles down every time they move. it is the kind of tiredness that effects the mind and the body. willow needs to sleep- they know this. but something, some paranoia in their darkened head keeps them going. "why are you out here? i've seen you- you're not sleeping either!" their voice is defensive, some spark of a former fire alighting it. "look after yourself. i'm fine. i'm providing for my clan, and it's my job. no one will starve, no one will die. i won't let anyone die."

teeth clenched, they stare out across the water again, ears flicking when it ripples, alerting them to a fish braving the darkened river. a paw flashes out, dipping into the river, and attempting to drag the creature ashore, but there's that exhaustion again. it seems to cackle at them as they miss the prey, and a sour drop of anger rots in their belly. "go home, poppysplash," they growl. "i don't know why you care anyway."

  • Love
her ears naturally warm at the sound of her name rolling off of willowroot's tongue. her gaze doesn't move from them, watching every single movement. willowroot doesn't even realize how easy it is for poppysplash to read them. and not because this is something that can be done easy, no of course not, but because poppysplash watched willowroot. the good, the bad, and the ugly... it didn't matter. every single bit of them means so much to her, and she can't help but watch them. as much as she knows... she wants to know more. she needs to know more.

willowroot always talked too much, that much was true. it was so easy for them to ramble on and on, and just that quick, a yawn interrupts their run on sentences, and poppysplash's brows furrowed.

"come on, do you really think i'm that dog-brained? you just yawned... right in the middle of that sentence? it's okay to be tired, willowroot."

poppysplash rolled her eyes at the woman, listening and tapping her tail against the ground, mixed gaze filled with that familiar pit of frustation. why did willowroot have to be so stubborn? what the hell was this even doing for her, right now? and why were they being so defensive? it was a simple question. innocent, even, and here willowroot was- biting her head off.

"what does my sleep schedule have to do with the fact that you need sleep?"

she scoffed.

"look after myself!? stars, willowroot! you do need sleep if you're gonna snap at me as if i'm the enemy!? what's your problem!? you can't possibly think it's your responsibility, and yours alone!"

it's so easy for her to be angry, but she can't explain why this time it hurts her so much. why does it feel like a steel blade has been cast through her heart? swallowing thickly, her tail lashed and her claws dug into the dirt, listening to the venomous tone from her friend... and it hurts worse.

go home, poppywillow? that's all you have to say to me!? why do i care?! stars, i wish i fucking knew!

"i care because you're my friend! what in the name of the stars is your deal!? how are you being such an asshole! I get you're going though something but that's my thing! y-you don't... treat your friends like this! and i'm saying this because I care! and I like you, so stop trying to screw everything up!"

  • Love
Reactions: willowroot
( ) something about the molly's tone sets her tail twitching, and soon enough it's lashing against the rocks. there's an uncomfortable emotion in her lungs right now- they're burning, choking her, a searing regret that cannot be dampened. the pain in her companion's words hits like a boulder, weighing her down, forcing her head to swivel up and her eyes to meet the other's. gold glimmers with care, a stinging, burning gaze that does not break as poppysplash bursts at the seams, a torrent of words, each more smarting than the last. "it- wh.. well it isn't your job to look after me! why should i matter to you? cats almost died, and you're worried about me?" but in their heart, they know the heat of their voice is breaking. the argument is an excuse, a reason they've come up with so that the mottled woman won't care. so then why does she cares so much?

slender paws push up, forcing the femme to her feet, and she begins pacing the bank, trying to look anywhere but those sunshine eyes, so full of everything they do not have the willpower to see. poppy spits her last argument, perhaps a desperate attempt at peace, but there is a war raging inside of willowroot's chest, and they cannot let either side win. i like you, so stop trying to screw everything up! these are the words that freeze her in her tracks. i like you... i like you, i like you, i like you. it's perhaps the most confusing thing the molly has said yet, and it shatters the shutters of the warrior's heart.

"i don't know! i don't know, okay? i don't know why i'm like this and i hate that i am because everything is okay right now! the clan is finally okay so why am i not?" their face screws up, muzzle wrinkling and head tipping to the side as they bite their lip. "i hate that i'm yelling at you right now because you don't deserve it, poppy, and you're kind to me. you came out here because you care," they swivel, pivoting to march straight at the femme and look her in the eye. they are painfully close now- poppy's breath is warm on willow's cheeks. if ever a silence was loud it would be this one.

"i don't know why i'm mad at you because you're so good, and you tolerate me at my worst. i don't want to drive you away," a hurt shout has faded to a low murmur, fern eyes dropping finally. "because i like you, poppysplash. i like you and i think i'm on my way to loving you. and i can't let you love me, because what if i fuck it up?" stars, i already have.

"of course it's not my job to look after you! i do it because i want to! you're the only cat that's ever just... wanted to be around me, okay!? and i'll be damned to the darkest parts of the sky if i ever let that go! i'd be more foolish than smokethroat!"

she snaps back, heartbeat drumming against her ribcage. there was so much emotion in the air, it was choking her. drowning her. she had never had these feelings. she defaulted to anger because next to that, the only thing she could feel was numb. it was all that was allowed... so how did one cat bring it all out of her? how did this one cat make her so damned vulnerable? as much as she hated how she felt... willowroot was the only cat she'd ever want to feel things around. damn the stars, and all that they brought. willowroot made poppysplash feel.

she listened more and more to the rambling tumbling words, unable to even sneak her own snobby jabs in there, her breath catching itself in her throat. she couldn't tell willowroot why they didn't feel okay. maybe willowroot was so busy worrying about what would happen, she couldn't calm down and see what was happening now. poppysplash wanted to comfort her, but they needed to let this out. and poppysplash let them, no matter how much tears burned at their eyes. she wants to call them a liar, but she doesn't even have the courage for it. and then, there is a silence.

the way she says the words... and it's so quickly followed by tales of love and how quickly willowroot is falling for her. her of all cats. why her? why, me? a frown fixed on her face and suddenly the tears break from their wells, paws shaking as she grabs the ground beneath her.

"don't... don't say stuff you don't mean. you couldn't possibly mean that! that doesn't make sense! it doesn't! it-"

laughter. laughter interrupts her, and suddenly she is pushing herself into willowroot's fur, taking in every single bit of her scent, as if she's afraid she will never smell it again.

"you idiot. i love you so much. nothing you ever say would ruin that for me. and you mean so much to me. and I care about you so let me help you. don't be such a frog brained fool, willowroot. let me take care of you for once."

she meant every single word. she loved this woman. her heart beat only continued for willowroot. and that much she knew.

  • Love
( ) "oh." willowroot is rarely speechless, but the feeling in her chest is too powerful for words right now. so, she just says, "oh," and then "oof," when she's suddenly collided with her companion, warmth beginning to sink into the pressing chill. poppysplash is the flame to her frost, and suddenly willow finds that they don't want the chill within them. there is no protection from emotion that could ever work if her feelings for poppy continue. pale fur mingles with silver tipped darkness as they sit there, basking in the moment. willowroot can't help it- she starts laughing. it's light and airy at first but it gives way to a breathtaking laughter that shakes the cold from her bones. "i'm an idiot. i am!" she exclaims, and presses her forehead to the other, willing her love to radiate out.

green eyes open on gold and she giggles again, whiskers twitching. "you look like you've only got one eye right now." there's a strange sense of playfulness to her, a drastic shift from before. she closes her eyes for a second more, relishing the closeness before pulling away. now she simply gazes, adoration clear in every vibrant speck of her eyes, a soft seriousness to the way she licks her lips. "you love me?" the question is more of a statement, because poppy had said it as a fact, and through laughter, she knows it to be true. "you love me. i love you. oh stars, how i love you."

she twines their tails, lifts a paw and places it gently under the woman's chin. softly she licks her cheek and then grins. "i'm so sorry, my love. i'm sorry i snapped at you. you never deserve it and it will never happen again. i think i'm too happy right now for it to ever happen." for good measure they swipe their tongue across the woman's other cheek and then her chest. tipping her head now to rest against poppysplash's, she sighs. "is it really true?"

it's warm. everything is finally warm.

poppysplash giggled, brushing her tongue over her own muzzle to try and wipe away any embarrassment. willowroot is someone that makes her laugh. stars know when the last time she did that was, and with them... it feels so natural.

"you may be an idiot... but you're my idiot. you hear me?"

a small gasp leaves her as their heads press together, and she smiles, completely relaxing as she laughs softly at willowroot's silly statement of her seeming to have one eye in this view. then, willow asks a question, and answers it within the same two breaths and a sudden purr vibrates within her. she admitted it. willowroot finally has admitted their love, and the words 'i love you' have never sounded so wonderfully sweet. the sweetest melody she's ever heard. and then suddenly, willowroot is apologizing and poppysplash frowns, curling their tails together tighter.

"stop apologizing, fool. you do know you're allowed to have feelings. you can get mad at me all you want... just don't stay mad. i deserve a lot of things but i don't think i could handle you staying mad at me."

she admits, before just returning the lick to willowroot's cheek, and brushing her muzzle against the others.

"of course i mean it, you dork. i love you. there's nothing more true in this world."