Asshole With A Heart of Gold
Sep 20, 2022
To take the final step to leave the familiar confines of the twolegplace had been the most difficult one, but because of the spilled blood of an innocent and the encroachment of a roving gang of violent strays he knew that his future would belong elsewhere. Talon had never ventured beyond the fences or the thunderpaths, but yet here he was taking his first bold steps into the wild world beyond. The scents and sounds were different, unnerving in his view. The ground gave too much of a bounce in comparison to the hard tarmac and concrete he had grown up on. With tense bravery he soldiered on.

The stray didn't know how long he had been wandering or how far, but the twolegplace seemed like a distant memory at this point. He was aware of a stronger scent coming from some of the trees and bushes that he passed, that of cats, but he made the choice to pay it no heed. He needed to press onwards and he needed to find food and water. If it meant pressing into someone else's territory for a bit then so be it, he'd run the risk.

The hunt was brief but rewarded him with a songbird. Settling himself down he then began to pull the feathers loose to make his meal more appetising to eat. He wasn't the biggest fan of feathers, they were all the wrong textures. At least he would soon have something to fill his belly before his journey continued.


Jaypaw is out looking for one of the necessities too- water. He's yet to catch sight of the river as he's new and instead has been drinking from puddles and the morning dew of leaves. Any rain saturates the area and through the petrichor, he sniffs on the wind a peculiar scent. It's different from the natural medley of a Thunderclanner's scent. It's more like a scent he remembers from his old home but not of cats there. Instead, cats he only caught glimpses of in the alleys or being shooed away from the gardens and so it makes him apprehensive. They're far away from an upwalker big place now and Jaypaw felt like he walked continents in his own journey but maybe it wasn't the long time he thought it was. Maybe his tired mind and body played tricks on him.

The thought is a scary one and what's worse is how nervous he is to meet a strange cat like that face to face. They could be very bad, his mother once told him, but so can any creature. The kid could always run back to find a proper Thunderclanner and tell them but... they'd probably think he was a coward... Swallowing, Jaypaw peers from behind a tree, finding a tall black cat eating a bird. "Uh... hey." Brilliant. Surely he can do better than that. The young orange and white tom pulls a deep cold breath into his chest and tries to ignore the scrunch in his bony shoulders as he steps out into view. He should be... friendly, right. That's how the Thunderclanners treated him. "I'm Jaypaw. Who are you? You're... in Thunderclan, you know." He's annoyed with himself for how his voice wobbles but he holds his head up high on his pencil neck.


He was no fighter, that much was certain; but since his kits were born he felt a natural inclination to keep an eye on the younger generation in the clan, even outside his own. It was probably why he got up to follow when he noticed Jaypaw wandering out of camp, a new face and a little uncertain in his pawsteps and Sunfreckle found he could not ignore him; the idea of an apprentice alone made him uneasy. The red tabby managed to keep pace along behind the other even despite his missing foreleg, pausing with horror as the sudden scent of something unfamiliar struck him in the midst of their territory. The horror only built up stronger, tighteneing his throat, when he heard the fiery young tom's stuttering introduction and queries. There was a stranger on ThunderClan territory.
Immediately he quickened his pace, falling alongside Jaypaw and that great plume of a red tail rose up and flicked to the side in a protective arc over the younger cat. Sunfreckle's green eyes narrow, but his expression is still soft albeit guarded. He speaks with a rare surge of confidence, emphasizing what Jaypaw had already said but with more firmness and more intent behind his words, "You are trespassing on ThunderClan territory."
He asked no questions, the warning was enough to hopefully dissuade any hostility and the stranger would explain why he was there. It would be fine. He hoped.


Berryheart had always been a talented tracker, to the point where he sometimes forgot that others may not be able to differentiate scents as well as he. From what he could tell there was an intruder on the territory- and as undergrowth brushed his fur, lopsided gaze staring forward with great purpose, he finally located the source of the odd intruding scent. A stranger, face to face with Sprawls- or perhaps, face to meal. The shadow-painted stranger had stuffed in his maw a mouthful of feathered meat- there was better food here, he had to know that- and Berryheart's attention settled to his paws, where the half-eaten corpse of a bird lay.

Sprawls asked a reasonable question, but simultaneously one Berryheart could quite easily surmise the answer to. Judging by the fact that he lay here so nonchalantly devouring a meal, as if this was his home and his paradise, he likely knew not. It was alright- not all cats were very good at differentiating scent markers... but, as Nifty mentioned, he was trespassing. This was claimed land now, with upkept borders. How in the world this rogue had managed to miss them was absolutely beyond him...

For how he took rank, stoic expression just that- statuesque, askew. For now his stare would deliver all the words required. For now, he would wait.
( ) Wait for the right moment...wait...

Her hackles were slightly raised, and the flame colored tabby crept silently along the ground as her eyes were locked onto a squirrel. She could feel her mouth watering as she imagined its savory taste. Suddenly the squirrel looked up, and shot off. Flamewhisker's tail flicked irritatedly as he catch escaped, then she realized why. The area reeked of a strange cat. A low growl formed in her throat as she also picked up on the smell of blood, and she quietly slunk towards the source of the smell.

She soon came across Jaypaw, Sunfreckle, and Berryheart. Normally she may have treated the newcomer more friendly, but here he was eating one of their birds. Her ears flicked back impatiently as she waited for the tom to answer for himself. This was her home now, and she would help her clanmates protect their territory if need be.
A voice chimes in on Talon's peace and prompts him to look up from his meal, but after looking Jaypaw up and down he merely shrugs and returns to the process of defeathering the bird. The other cat seemed young, hardly a threat. Not only that but his voice betrays his lack of confidence. No doubt if things got tense a mere hiss would send the youth rocketing away.

Unfortunately the apprentice had a pack of annoying friends to back him up, and they didn't convey the same wimpish aura. The stray lifted his head again, letting a feather fall away from his jaw. He's immediately accused of trespassing. Which was true, not that he particularly cared, and he fully intended to make them understand that. "Yeah? And so what?" He rumbled as he rested a paw with extended claws upon his quarry. He wasn't about to give up his food, and to make a point of it he bent his head back down so he could keep feasting. Though he didn't lower his guard, he wasn't that foolish.

He seemed fairly protective of a rather average meal, and uncaring of the fact he was encroaching. Oh, if this turned into a fight it would be a ridiculous bother... and would be quite unwise on Spiny's part.Four versus one seemed ridiculously unfair, to the point where Berryheart would judge his intelligence more than his fighting ability if he were to charge healing into such a thing. For now, any physical conflict was still held off cold, a protective paw glinting with unsheathed weapons moving to cover a catch. Though his expression barely changed, Berryheart's gaze noticeably lingered upon the paw for a few lone moments.

As usual, he appeared largely unfazed, crooked jaw hanging ajar. "There are borders." he pointed out, no condescension in his intention but perhaps gained regardless. Really, Berryheart had no idea how Spiny had missed them... unless the patrols had been slacking. And a bird- really? When there were squirrels and mice about? It was pitiful- the tortoiseshell tom almost felt sorry for him.
"And? That has no meaning to me." What did these cats even want? Well, except to force him along and to leave him without a meal. Did these days believe that they owned the entire forest? It was a ridiculous notion and reminded him all too much of the foul gangs back in twolegplace. Perhaps the wilds were no different from the concrete jungle, a disappointing revelation. "I'll move along once I feel ready to, so hold your mice, jeez!"

Jaypaw stares forward in a bit of loss but also annoyance when the stranger doesn't even offer an answer. The apprentice huffs and frowns but lacks the courage to say anything else so he's stuck there awkwardly staring at the older cat since he's not sure what to do. Luckily, another voice breaks the silence for him and as Jaypaw catches sight of Sunfreckle at his side, his body deflates some of the tension that had built up. He can't remember anyone ever standing up for him and he gawks before snapping his eyes back onto the stranger. Trespassing? Er, well, Jay sort of did that didn't he... No, no. He collapsed here, that was different, he decides. Besides, this is an adult so he should know the rules better right. This whole "borders" thingy.

Berryheart and Flamewhisker's arrival then almost makes him feel near courageous then and he wiggles his wiskers at the stranger and all his snappy tone. "You could have just asked, you know..." At least he thinks so. Thunderclanners are nice in his opinion but maybe he's being naive. "Oh, are you a spy maybe? For another clan? Is that why you're so mean?" Jaypaw asks, sounding a little excited about that even though an actual spy (at least a good one) wouldn't just flat out give that information. "Well, I guess you can't say..." The apprentice looks a little disappointed at the thought. He's heard about those in stories and it would be kind of cool to meet one. He has to have some reason for being so rude and not wanting to give his name, right.
"A spy? If I was a spy then I wouldn't be doing a very good job, would I?" Talon huffed as he took the time to have a stretch. So much for having a peaceful meal, and frankly having a young cat spill questions like a flushing drain was making it hard for him to relax. He finished most of the bird but ended up leaving a pile of feathers and bits he wasn't as keen on, such as the legs and beak. "Right, I'm going, whatever." The spidery tom picked a random direction and began walking, only except the direction he picked was perhaps the worst as it set him on the direct path to the camp rather than the closest border.

Emboldened by the presence of his clanmates, the red tabby shifts and steps himself directly in front of Talon's path with a smile that did not quite meet his eyes; his size was coming in useful as a physical barrier even if he did not have the tenacity to back up his forwardness.
"Wrong direction, friend. Other way please." He was not going to admit the camp was in that direction, but he certainly wasn't going to let the tom closer to it. Jaypaw's remark, thought silly, made him worry over more than just another clan's spy. A loner group perhaps? No, surely this tom was here alone or either a magnificent liar. Sunfreckle fully believed he was just passing by, what 'spy' would go and chow down on another clan's territory? It was nonsensical.
"There are borders." He echoed Berryheart's comment with a little more emphasis, "That way moves too far in ours."

What the actual fuck? Were they truly allowing an intruder to wander this close to camp? Her fur bristled as she purposely tried to block his path. There were too many vulnerable individuals residing in camp: Roepaw, Dewkit, Flickerkit, Sparkkit. The list could go on and on. Though exasperated and shocked, her face remained icy cool.

Why were they acting more like soft kittypets than ThunderClan warriors? "Why has no one found @HOWLING WIND or @emberstar ? Someone fetch them. Now." Every ThunderClan cat received the same silent, wind-chilling stare. The intruder, though, was met with a glare that doubled as a threat.

"Either be escorted off the premises, ask for an official audience to become a warrior of ThunderClan, or leave with some nasty bruises. These antics were surely fun but they stop here." A voice reminded her that, as medicine cat, this wasn't her job. But it came an issue - her issue - the moment the stranger had begun to wander in the direction of camp.

Whether StarClan approved or not, she refused to allow someone to waltz into their camp. And she would take action if the intruder tried to escalate the situation. ​
As if summoned by the very voicing of her name, the deputy arrives with pelt fluffed out and tail lifted high in the air. She canters towards the group before coming to a firm stop beside Sunfreckle, eyes narrowed upon the intruder. How many warriors were present here? And this cat hadn't been driven out yet? Frustration bubbles up within her and her claws slide out. It doesn't take long for her to emit a warning growl, "I suggest you turn tail and leave this territory now, or we'll make you leave." She'd give the patrol a firm talking to once he's gone; she won't dare show weakness in front of this stranger by scolding them. Another second he stays, and claws will fly, she'll be sure of it.
Oh? Now they were making an effort to stop him in his tracks? How curious that they didn't want him heading that way either, it roused a feeling of suspicion. "Bet the best prey is that way too." "Greedy forest cats." Talon huffed with a roll of his eyes as he took a step back from Sunfreckle. Though if his headache wasn't bad enough already it was made all the worse with the arrival of Cinderfrost. A string of words spilled forth and only added to his confusion but also to his growing pool of information. Were all cats out in the woods this frustrating? Oh look, another one! "Someone's a lil spicy." He remarked cheekily in Howling Wind's direction before he shifted to a more serious glower. "I already told your lil gang that I'll go when I damn well want to go!"
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This unnamed rogue was really, truly speaking back to them? "That's not how territories work, rogue." Teal eyes shifted to Howling Wind: a brief interaction that was once a natural occurrence.

The blue mink crept to his side. Time to point him in the correct direction- away from camp and away from their borders. If they still knew how each other worked, Howling Wind would go for the front of the tom. The distraction, hopefully, giving her the opportunity to disturb his balance.

Suddenly, like a snapping turtle, she lunged forward and attempted to shove the tom cat with her right shoulder blade. While the other "warriors" idly watched, Howling Wind and herself would herd the trespasser away. ​

Temper, temper... it was the downfall of all who recklessly trespassed. And all who encountered them. How idiotic to start a fight when this hopelessly outnumbered, yet Spiny's tongue ran faster than his paws. Berryheart stood aside, nothing but bemused until sharpened vocals slung his mother's way. An already-unreadably expression grew duller, tightened, and his previously-slack knocked jaw clattered teeth as it shut. A quiet tut leapt from the flick of his tongue... and up drew a paw, pristine claws leaping from snowy toes. So seldom did he see them that Berryheart had to resist examining them for a moment, inspecting that they were still sharp.

"This was avoidable." Over the din, he spoke pointedly to the intruder, voice as flat and level as if he was simply telling him that the sky was blue. Ample time had been given- ample explanation, too. Berryheart's own apathy to conflict did not extend to everyone around him- evidently. The stranger could blame what was to befall him on no-one but himself- and his tongue for daring to spit poison at Big Mama. She was not fond of such language... he had faith she would enact what she deemed best along with the Executioner. He would sit, claws drawn, a standby sentinel ready for the war-horn.
Pearly fangs are revealed behind curled lips as the intruder dismisses the ThunderClanners' warnings with nothing but ugly words. Her ears flick back against her skull, unimpressed. If he doesn't wish to leave, she has no choice but to force him to. Perhaps it's time to demonstrate to the others here what a warrior does when confronted with an intruder on their territory. Cinderfrost moves to shove the tom and the deputy rears up suddenly, swiping her forepaws at his head with claws unsheathed. A furious hiss escapes her as she lands back down on all four paws, back arches and fluffed-out tail lifted high in the air. "Leave our forest at once," She warns again, eyes narrowed and glinting.

She looks away from a moment, towards Berryheart, towards Jaypaw, towards Flamewhisker. A flick of her ears, and instruction. Unsheathe your claws. Bare your teeth. Defend your clan.
Talon was honestly surprised when one of the bitches had the gall to shove him! He snapped his head round in an instant and his lips curled back to reveal sharp teeth, all the while a snarl bubbled up in the back of his throat. He would have gone for her if a greater threat hadn't come at him with unsheathed claws.

His wild looking eyes were rapidly upon Howling Wind and he let out a banshee-like shriek of raw outrage. Blood trickled from the fresh cuts on his head, but it only seemed to serve as a greater irritation to him. The tom lunged for Howling Wind and he made an attempt to latch his teeth into her cheek. If successful he would twist his body side to side with the intentions of ripping out a chunk of flesh. If these clan cats were going to drive him off for simply minding his own business then he was going to leave them with a little reminder of him.
( ) Her eyes widened slightly as Cinderfrost and Howling Wind soon emerged, and a battle was initiated. Irritatedly, her tail flicked back and forth, and she slid her claws out. She waited on standby until an opportunity became available. Had she known it was fine to attack, she probably would have earlier..but she didn't want to get in trouble since she were still new.

As the tom lunged for Howling Wind, Flame attempted to dart forward with outstretched claws. She attempted to swipe at him furiously, aiming at his eyes and ears. Whether the attacks hit or not, she would soon find out. Fighting with two other cats beside her was difficult, and something she had not done before. Her fiery pelt bristled, making herself look twice her size. "We said leave you mange-pelt!" she would hiss.
Teeth meet her face and a yowl of pain leaves her as she flinches away, blood now seeping from fresh wounds. A throaty growl rumbles in her throat as she refocuses, spotting Flamewhisker now attacking. Howling Wind falls back, side-stepping so that she is blocking off the direction of camp. Another hiss leaves her as she spits, "We won't ask you again." Her claws feel heavy with blood - her attack had hit. Pink tongue swipes across her teeth before she takes a threatening step forward, preparing to attack again. He's horribly outnumber, but if he's mouse-brained enough to continue, she'll oblige.