MAKE A SPLASH (sunningrocks)

The sun shone bright above their heads as cats lounged about, chatting and basking in the warmth upon the smooth rocks. The spot was a little ways off from the pine forest they inhabited, but it was worth the trip to spend time in such comfort. Mud wouldn't waste his time sunbathing, though. No, the hours of the day could be much better spent having fun! While his denmates conversed, he could be seen nearby, splashing about in the cool river. It was particularly slow today, so he was enjoying the easy current.

Truthfully, he couldn't recall when or how he learned to swim. At a young age, it was just something he'd picked up, perhaps in a shallow pool near his and Thorn's den. He'd never known it was odd for a cat to swim, not until he realized how averse his brother was to the water. Now with Rain's group, he realized just how few cats enjoyed a good splash!

The tom would paddle back in the direction of the shore, calling out with a grin to his friends, "Come on in, the water's great!" Surely someone would join him?


Ember sat safely on the rocks, eyeing the water with unease. Normally, she would not hesitate to join in the tom's playing. If it were anywhere else, she'd even be eager to. The river though was another question. She wasn't just going to throw herself in the water like that! "Can't we just play up here where it's dry?" she whined.

Her mother had never taught her to swim, quite the opposite in fact. Everything she'd learned had been about keeping from falling in. The idea of throwing herself in voluntarily made the molly balk. "Aren't you uncomfortable like that?" she questioned, eyeing her groupmate's pelt with a shiver. It didn't make any sense to her.

Sunlight was always especially nice against dark fur- though it meant he could not bathe for lost lest he overheat. Still, when he heard a group was heading to the rocks, he was quick to accompany them. Hunched and lagging, he had stayed toward the back and out of sight on the trip over, wholly unwilling to interject in anyone's conversation. Who was he to say whether they wanted to speak to him or not? It was probably going to be the latter; he found the concept of him being wanted in conversation completely unfathomable.

Warmed, glacial eyes were fastened shut- and though he refused to be taken by sleep, keeping himself awake by the conscious tapping of one of his front paws, he was not tuned in to the happenings of the outside world. No conversations, no activities, captured his attention- that was until Mud's voice, chirrupy as ever, broke that insulation. An eye, peering and narrowed, creaked open to spot the large tom- he was not easily missed.

Unlike Ember, who seemed suspect of the fact a cat could enjoy the water, Haku could understand it. If the river was anything like the rain, it was cooling- though, he couldn't say that swimming in it much appealed to him. He was a bit hotter than he'd like to be, though...

Getting to his feet, Haku began to sidle over, eyes trained upon the river. "It's not... cold?" He'd prefer not to plunge into arctic depths, but a nice cool splash could do him some good, he was sure.

"if i even try 'ta swim i'd jus' sink to tha' bottom of the river like i was made of nothin' but rock!"

a laugh bubbled up from deep from within the chest of a black smoke who could be seen lying down upon the smooth surface of one of the flat rocks that was shaded by the nearby trees. it was a shame that he couldn't enjoy swimming with his groupmates who fancied the activity but his long, thick coat would only become waterlogged and add even more weight which was more trouble than necessary. huckleberry didn't mind water but throwing himself into a body of it was not something he would consider, especially a river that always had a constant flow. if there was an area that was much more shallow then that'd be another thing.


Unlike all those who accompanied Mud, Cow had no qualms about getting his fur wet. Careening into the water next to the chocolate-furred tom, an empty head would stay beneath the water for a concerningly long time before reappearing, taking grateful gulps of air. “I dunno how fish do it!” he shouted with a mix of exasperation and wonderment. “They’ve gotta come up for air sometime! I bet they do it at night when everyone’s asleep.” satisfied with the answer to his own theory (and now planning a stakeout to catch the fish in the act that night), attention would turn towards the others.

Similar to Mud, Cow couldn’t remember a time when he didn’t know how to swim, Seeing his friends hesitation filled him with pity. The few cogs in his brain began crawling, trying to come up with a solution. Even the bovine boy knew he would be no good as a teacher, so that was out. However, his strength could be put to use…

Paddling towards the water’s edge, Cow would make an offer his friends clearly wouldn’t want to refuse. “Hey! If anyone doesn’t know how to swim, you could ride on my back. I’d be like a personal chauffeur through the river!”
( ) Gull is no stranger to water. Many seasons of his life had been spent upon a ship, catching rodents for his twoleg companions. He can still recall looking out at the open sea, bright sunlight dazzling on the waves that rocked their vessel. The smell of salt lingering in the air, and the cries of the seabirds he was named after as they skimmed the surface of the water in search of fish.

Those days are long gone, but the river keeps the memories alive.

It’s no secret that Gull prefers the wetlands above all. He frequents the riverbank daily, the babbling of the streams bringing him some semblance of comfort amid the tensions that are rising between the two groups. The fish are a bonus; and while most of his groupmates turn their noses up at the scaly prey, it would seem as if the pale-furred tom either didn’t notice their distaste or didn’t care, as fish have become the only prey he would bring back.

Surprising to no one, Gull had eagerly jumped onto the patrol headed to the river. The trek to the wetlands had been filled with countless stories of his time as a ship’s cat, most of them highly exaggerated and the rest downright untrue. Once they’d arrived, however, Gull had settled down onto the sun-warmed rocks. His forepaws dipping into the cool water, he lets out a content sigh. “This is livin’,” comments the tom to no one in particular, his half-tail twitching. Amusement perks his scraggly whiskers as he watches a couple of his groupmates paddling in the river, ears flicking towards the rest who complained. A glint of mischief enters his olivine gaze. “Afraid of a little water, ya dry-paws?He aims to splash any nearby cats with one paw, barking a laugh.

Cow offers to carry anyone who couldn’t swim, which earns a snort from Gull. “Nah, I say we toss anyone who can’t swim into the deep end! That’s how ya get ‘em to learn fast; my pa taught me to swim that way, and look at me now! I could outswim all of these fishes with my eyes closed.” Ironic of Gull to claim such a thing while he lazes on the shore.

Without much hesitation, Lily is quick to take up her father's invitation, leaping into the water. Most cats tend to stay away from the water or only dip their paws in if they must, but Lily didn't mind. From a young age, Mud had encouraged her to swim and though hesitant at first - the deep water had frightened her as a kit - she had quickly become proficient and developed a love for it like Mud had.

"Might not be the wisest idea for some, but that would certainly be one way to get their paws wet!" Lily chuckled in response to Gull's suggestion.


The flame-point could only balk at the offer Cow extended to her. The idea of balancing precariously atop his back, one wrong move from dunking herself in the water all around her, it was terrifying. Almost more so than the thought of stepping in of her own volition. "I think I'll pass." She replied with a nervous glance toward the river.

She yelped as a splash of water hit her, leaping to her paws. Only to be met with a bark of laughter from Gull. Without a word she raced to the shoreline alongside him, aiming to pay him back twofold. With her paws already wet, she had nothing left to lose. Ember dunked both her paws in the shallows to send a flurry of splashes his way.

However, her fur soon stood on end at the older tom's next words. In an instant she darted away from both him and the shoreline, eyeing them both warily. "Ya'd have to catch me first!" she warned him. There was no way she was getting in the river, especially not in the deep end. She'd run circles around the old man if he so much as tried it. Her whole body was tensed, ready to burst into motion at a moments notice.
Last edited:

Mud let out a laugh as the cat on the shore chased and splashed each other, throwing joking threats around. He paddled towards the bank until his large paws could stand upon the sandy mud along the bottom of the river. He waded out to stand on dry land once more, and gave his short pelt a shake, likely spraying anyone nearby with droplets. As Ember and Gull joked, the chocolate tom's gaze flicked towards his daughter and Cow in the water and he beamed in their direction. "Watch out!" He yowled before climbing clumsily onto one of the large boulders that made up Sunningrocks and took a running leap back into the river. He hit the water with a splash, rapidly paddling to right himself underwater before kicking back towards the surface and breaking through with a laugh. Nothing could beat a day like this - just he and his family and friends having fun!