POKER FACE ;; raiding birds nest


She saw it in the short distance. A freshly laid nest of eggs, which the only remaining bird parent had left unaccompanied. It was odd, seeing as how the mother would usually guard the nest for a few days or switch with the father bird here and there. Nonetheless, Hyacinth would approach the bush with attentive ears and eyes, tail flicking behind her in her excitement. She pokes her head into the bush, spotting the brown nest full of sticks and feathers- then, ever so carefully, she would pull the blackbirds nest out with her teeth.

When it reached the edge of the bush, she would hear an alarmed chirp in the distance, then a stiff chirp in response. She tenses, nervous that the blackbird parents have returned already. She turns, only to see a blackbird flopping helplessly beneath someone elses paw.

"Could've told me you were there." She meows without emotion, lifting the stiff nest filled with small eggs. In her jaw's clutches, it was much easier to carry.

The apprentice replies, voice muffled from the bird in his mouth before he drops it to try again with a little more coherence, "Sorry, Hyacinthbreath! Saw ye lurking 'bout this bush and got curious, didn't mean to spook ya!" While not uncommon, finding a nest was a really nice treat and he expected some kits and queens might be pretty excited about an egg with their freshkill. Eggs these size wouldn't feed a warrior worth a lick, not that he'd turn a nose up to some delicious yolk, but this felt like the lead warrior had acted upon this knowing this specific prey would go to one of the less able-bodied in camp; whether that be from youth or age.
Dandelionpaw shuffled his paws in delight as he stood there, peering at the nest hanging from the silver molly's teeth now with interest, "Them blackbirds is awful mean, didn't want ye to get yer eyes pecked."
Small as they were, a territorial bird was pretty dangerous if you let them get the slip on you. Hardly anything fatal, but they'd hurt something fierce to be sure! The sepia point glanced down to the limp avian at his paws, the glistening black feathers seemed unusually dull from this angle and his mismatched gaze lifted back to the eggs in the nest with a thoughtful expression.
"Ought to wait an see if the other'n comes back maybe? Free bird." But also, if left alone they might hear its mournful song rising up over the moors as it realized what had become of its kin.

Pollenfur makes a trilling noise deep in her throat as she approaches Hyacinthbreath and Dandelionpaw. The former holds a stiff circle of twigs and bits of leaf between her paws; the latter settles burnt sienna feet on a dead blackbird. The chocolate tortoiseshell's smile widens slightly. "Good catch, Dandelionpaw," she says, aiming to bump her shoulder against the younger tom's. "I think that's what our lead warrior was trying to say." She smiles lazily in Hyacinthbreath's direction.

Amber eyes focus and narrow slightly at the cluster of tiny eggs like pebbles in the she-cat's nest. A prize, to be sure. "Ever had blackbird eggs, kiddo? It's a risk, but they are divine. Are they all for you?" She twitches an ear and tilts her head in what she hopes is a becoming, bewitching manner. She hasn't had eggs in so long...


Dandelionpaw's face is one of the few she didn't expect to see, especially with the blackbird she was worried about dead by his paw. She looks impressed, for a moment, after he talks- but, she doesn't voice it. Soon, Pollenfur arrives and praises the apprentice- Hyacinth finds herself nodding in agreement, finally opening her mouth to speak.

"They're for the kits. Thought some eggs would be good nutrients. My mother told me it was an old mollie's tale that yolk was good for kits." She speaks calmly, talking of the mollie's tale. Thinking of all of the things her mother had told her about kitting to prepare for the possibility that she has her own one day. She shuts her eyes, the smell of her mother's violet-filled scent wafting past her nose. It wasn't real, she knew- merely a memory that comes and goes, a reminder of her mother. "I'm sure you can have some, though. Most of the kits in the Clan are all old enough to become apprentices, so maybe this would just be a good snack.." She mumbles to herself, already beginning her trek back to camp.

Even if Pollenfur and Dandelionpaw didn't come back with her, she'd continue talking- voice muffled by the nest filled with eggs.

"I know it's probably the worst time to talk about this. But have either of you seen Lavenderstorm around?" She asks awkwardly, trying to hide her own desperation to find her mate. "I've been looking for her, but it's been almost a week and she hasn't returned home."

He beamed at the praise, paws shuffling as he looked from Pollenfur to Hyacinthbreath, listening to the explaination of where the eggs would be going and the surprising offer to let him try one, "Ah've had chicken eggs 'fore once or twice!" Occasionally one was dropped by a clumsy farmhand while being gathered and taken back to the two-leg next back at the barn and if he was lucky it was on a hard surface that wasn't too dirty; the yolk licked off the ground with enthusiasm. He wondered if blackbirds tasted different, he wondered if the color of the bird changed the flavor of the eggs, maybe all birds were the same until they hatched and then they turned colors? Dandelionpaw didn't know but it was interesting to think about. As the silver molly started to walk he exchanged a look with Pollenfur before picking the dead avian at his paws up to follow with a quick skip to his step. The conversation turned briefly serious, even if he struggled to understand the lead warrior with her mouth full of bird nest, her tone was very clearly one of concern; at least slightly.
Dandelionpaw's first attempt to speak was so muffled by feathers that he had to set the bird back down to try again briefly, "Ain't seen 'er lately m'self?" His green and gold gaze darted to the other she-cat with worry in his eyes. A whole week missing? Shouldn't they send someone to try and find her or something? That sounded horrible.


Ivoryflight froze, staring at the group uncomfortably. It was not her intention to “barge” in on what seemed to be a private conversation. All she had wanted to do was go for a hunt, and had in turn picked up on the groups’ scent. Initially, she thought that she could join them for awhile, see what all they were able to catch and perhaps team up to take down a hare or something similar. “Oh! My apologies, I didn’t realize that you guys were having a private conversation while hunting…. I can erm go hunt somewhere else for awhile?” Shuffling her paws awkwardly, the molly could only hope that they wouldn’t be too upset with her. She did apologize after all.

Pollenfur is caught entirely off guard by Hyacinthbreath's friendliness. The tortoiseshell is cautious, sharing Dandelionpaw's confused mismatched gaze, before peering at the short silver lynx with concern. Lavenderstorm, her mate, hasn't been around?

"Not the most observant of cats, I'm afraid," she murmurs, flicking her ear. "But... a week. You must be worried."

What would she do if Honeytwist disappeared for a whole week? She'd be out looking for her, she knows, but Hyacinthbreath is a lead warrior, tied to Sootstar and to WindClan. She can't drop everything to chase a she-cat who may not love her anymore.

Pollenfur's expression warms itself into sympathy, but before she can say anything else, Ivoryflight stumbles upon the patrol, apologizing for intruding. The tortoiseshell shakes her head. "Oh, no, you're fine. We're on our way back, but we don't mind the company. Do we, folks?" Not her call, but Ivoryflight doesn't look like she heard any of Hyacinthbreath's personal business.


There's a look of confliction in her eyes as Pollenfur and Dandelionpaw basically confirm her worries. She'd asked plenty of people, and when the sun went down, after Coldpaw's was training was done, she searched a separate part of the territory for Lavenderstorm. Returning home without her felt like daggers sliced through her heart, but she carries on. She has to, for the Clan. She's a Lead Warrior, and as Pollenfur was thinking, she couldn't just leave to search for Lavender randomly.

Ivoryflight's presence startles Hyacinth out of her silent thought process, a cat she hadn't been around much- and therefore, she seemed a bit distant from the girl. Nonetheless, Hyacinth gives her a nod of greeting before she speaks. "Not at all. As Pollenfur says, we're coming back from a patro. You're free to walk with us in case you catch something else." She meows with her usual monotoned voice, looking away from the molly- avoiding her eyes.

"It's- Um. Nevermind, it's ridiculous to think about it. Maybe she just left, got tired of me. I don't blame her." She abruptly ends the conversation about Lavenderstorm, shutting herself off once more. As they reach the badger den, she sets down the nest of eggs to take a short rest, perching herself on a patch of grass. "If you wanna make your catches before we reach camp." She offers the time to hunt again, tail flicking behind her. They shouldn't come back with empty paws. That's right, she had more responsibilities. More things she could think about.

Nodding, Ivoryflight would fall into line with the group, doing her best not to listen in on the remainder of their conversation. It wasn’t exactly her business, and trying to offer advice wasn’t exactly a good look for her at the moment. In a way, she understood wanting to vent about things, but on the other paw she knew that cats wouldn’t always want to talk about their problems. Maybe in time, Hyacinth would open up more and she could be a comforting friend to her. “Sure! Anyone want to team up to try and get something?” Looking at all the members on the patrol, she would wait for answers before heading off in search of something.

"Howdy, Ivoryflight! Yer fine!" Or he figured she was, this wasn't a secretive chat or anything, just a discussion born from concern.
A missing warrior? He wondered why Hyacinthbreath didn't mention it to Sootstar so they could look for her? Or maybe she had and Sootstar had given her some comment about wasting time and effort. Maybe Lavenderstorm did just want a break and would be back soon, but if the silver warrior's despondent behavior was anything to go by he figured she was anything but okay with it. As if to emphasize his thoughts she dismissed it all so carelessly, acting unbothered when the signs were clearly there she was.
"I reckon maybe she just needed time to 'erself, Hyacinthbreath." Dandelionpaw commented, paws anxiously kneading the blackbird before him, "Any cat worth a lick o'salt for yer peace o'mind'll come back to ye." He wasn't going to claim to know Lavenderstorm very well, but the cats who stuck by you were the ones you ought to care the most about and if she was as good as he hoped then she'd amble on back on her own time.
He quickly turned to take up the pale warrior of her offer to keep hunting, tail flicking in eagerness. "Can ye watch my bird, Pollenfur?" He didn't want to bury it since they weren't going to be out for too much longer. "We'll be quick as a crack o'lightning!"