OH, WHAT A PICTURE PERFECT CHILD \ nest-weaving, intro

Stupid thing, this'd be the fourth time he had restarted.

Shredded pieces of moss lay at Twitchkit's side, scattered all about him as if a crowd of tiny green men were viewing his pitiful display of failure. The moss was watching, but they weren't- olive eyes searched for them in the throng, black and white nuzzling against tortoiseshell- and there they were, just as he'd thought, enthralled in sharing a meal and sparing their son not a single glance. His teeth, already gritted in irritation, tightened against each other, locking into fastened, borderline-painful place.

To one side his neck spasmed, a namesake lapsing his balance for a moment- and his weaving slipped yet again, unsheathed claw fumbling and catching a fistful of moss. Five. Five tries and nothing good to show for it. His mother and father still didn't look at him, even as he let out a growl of annoyance, even as he slammed his fifth failure into the grass next to him, even as he started again.

Why was he no good at this? What about it had his father thought he would be good at? He wasn't delicate, he never had been, and the fact his tremulous paws sometimes seized uncontrollably was not a help. Green eyes narrowed as they moved back to his parents, though they appeared not to feel the burn of his gaze. A snort left the kitten, indignant, as his head snapped back to focus on his work. "Grrff-ghhhhrrr... gr-ff, not even watching-ggg- fff... grahfff..."

They meant nothing, the "words", but they helped expel his frustration- at least until he inevitably messed up again.
penned by pin ✧

If anyone knew a thing or two about frustration in regards to building a nest it was Red. The point tom needed everything to be just right. No - perfect. If the things he did weren't perfect then how could he ever be a good son? A good brother? Friend? Maybe even one day a good mate? And if he wasn't the perfect cat did that make him worthy to live among his fellow clan-mates? What if he couldn't hunt or fight or build a nest? What did that make him? He wanted to be the best at not just one thing, but at everything he does, though he knows it's an impossible standard. Twitchkit's parents may not be watching him, but Red was. Bright blue eyes focus on the brown pelt with a sympathetic gaze as he watches the young cat make and destroy, a process he himself is all too familiar with.

After the bedding is thrown to the ground in an act of anger, Red pushes himself to his paws and trots over and for a moment watches as small paws tremble, trying desperately to weave material together but failing. "try moving that strand and that one" he says, pointing with a red paw to the moss that now lays between the younger cats paws, though he doesn't move to help, to do any of the work for him. Red has always believed in learning by doing, and besides he's not certain Twitchkit would appreciate it anyways. "Don't worry kid you'll get the hang of it eventually" He offers encouragingly.

Daisy Flight sat, alert gaze sweeping the clearing, unable to ignore the sad display to her left. The clutching, huffing zig-zag kit that sat in a circle of moss kept her attention wandering from the entrance. So debilitatingly round now, she had little to do but watch. Frustration oozed from the tiny scrap and the queen couldn't help but pity them. Weaving was a tricky job on its own, let alone with paws that seemed to scatter themselves without cause.

It was once she followed the kit's gaze to a pair of cats, eating merrily, that she gathered the effort to stand. She hoped, fiercely, that those two weren't the parents of the struggling child. Red arrived before her, giving words of encouragement the calico nodded along with. Voice low and patient, she greeted them both, "Afternoon. He's right, no doubt you'll be churning out perfect nests one day! It's not easy though is it?"

And then, sharp speculation twisting in her eyes- only visible as she turned away- Daisy Flight added sweetly, "Are those your parents over there? I'm sure they can do that for you later..." Gaia would never be left without help like that. Though, in a sighed concession, she had to admit she was new to parenthood. Perhaps she was overreacting.
Little Twitchkit tosses shreds of moss in frustration, volcanic growls erupting from his little throat. He sits alone, surrounded by failed nests -- but Blazestar, even from where he lays in the shade fox-lengths away, can see the way he gazes at two cats sharing prey. His parents, acting as though he isn't there at all, and the little tomkit is practically shaking with how upset he's getting.

The flame point frowns. He's no parent -- far from it, though sometimes it feels as though he is supposed to be to the Clan. Because he doesn't know what a parent is supposed to do, really, he can't blame or hold judgment against Twitchkit's parents. He'd never had feline parents, himself. Perhaps if he had, they'd have wanted him to figure things out on his own, too.

Still, Redstorm and Daisyflight attempt to placate him, convince him he'll get the hang of nest weaving. Blazestar heaves himself to enormous paws and pads close to the small gathering of cats. "Maybe you should take a break," he suggests. "Making nests on an empty stomach is hard work. There's still prey in the fresh-kill pile." He swings his head towards the stocked food in question.​

Twitchkit was unlike Redstorm in that aspect- it was not perfection he strived for, but mere functionality. Even that basest aim seemed nigh-impossible though, especially since the more and more he failed the more and more frustration built up magma-hot irritation in his throat and eyes. Still, unsteady paws heeded his instruction, even as non-verbal grumbles rumbled in his throat. That strand, and that one- it did work, but from there what did he do? He couldn't go off of one instruction- how was he supposed to get the hang of it when he'd barely been given any guidance? He was going to shuffle back to his mother and father a failure and then they'd all sleep on the floor and it would be miserable and they'd probably-

Spiralling thoughts were cleaved by a sharp yet soft tone, as if someone's voice could be those things all at once- their deputy, and a queen he lived in close quarters with. The pair assured him he'd work it out someday. "It's- yeah, someday, maybe. Maybe." the assurance helped a little, but... there they were, still eating. Mum laughed at something Dad said and he had to resist throwing the half-finished nest right at their heads.

Then, a question. Wide green eyes snapped to meet Daisyflight's, incredulous, as if she had just asked him if he could fly.

"No they can't! They wanted me to do it for them and Dad's not gonna be happy if I come back with nothing 'cos then we'll have to sleep on the floor and then I'll get sick from floor germs and-"

The runaway assumptions were verbal, this time, and shredded asunder by the heavy footsteps of Blazestar. Twitchkit's mouth snapped shut with a noticeable sound, and he looked at the leader's pale paws as he stopped near them. A break? Was that even allowed when he had a task to do? Surely it wasn't okay to reward himself before he'd even come close to completing a task. But- Blazestar was the leader. If he said it was okay then surely he was right. "You- think it'd be okay to do that? Just... a little break to- to eat?"

His parents were eating, he supposed. They hadn't invited him, but maybe it had been implied that he should have before he started.
penned by pin ✧

The passion with which the kit threw back his words caught Daisy Flight off guard. Tossed terms of 'Dad's not gonna be happy, sleep on the floor, floor germs'- they all flattened her ears further with disapproval. The tenuous hold she had on remaining impartial snapped and the queen found herself biting her munitioned tongue back. There were many things she wanted to say.

"Yes! Yes of course you can eat" In a voice that was almost reprimanding, she bustled around the kit. The exasperated frustration was not directed at him however. "Don't worry, Blazestar is right. There's plenty of freshkill. If there are any problems just- just tell them the deputy gave you permission." The weaponizing of her title had happened much earlier than she expected, the words slipping from her mouth without warning. Daisy Flight gave her leader a glance that ever so subtly conveyed her embarrassment at the declaration but held strong. She really shouldn't be meddling in another's family...