sensitive topics To bury this beneath my bed | vigil

[Ooc: Just a thread touching on @ROSEPAW's death and burial because Rosepaw was such a lovely character and I am sad ;___; Kaze really out here breaking hearts for real.]

It was funny how he was the one who suggested they extend the gravesite where Sootstar's own parents lay to allow a place for their own clanmates to rest and thus far he had helped dig each hole that had been added to it. Or maybe it wasn't funny. Honestly, he found there was no humor in this irony only some kind of penance he felt had to be paid.
What did you do when your patient didn't wake up? What could he have done to help more? Water could only hold a cat over for so long, he couldn't tell if it was the infection or lack of food that finally took Rosepaw away but he starred down at his brown paws blending into the muddy ground and wondered why. Why. There was bitter bile rising in his throat and he swallowed it down because he had cried enough that his eyes hurt and he couldn't afford another drop, there was no time to grieve as long as he wanted to. A cat died and clan life moved on and it hurt. It hurt that the world didn't stop and pause and give them a moment's respite. But he could stop and give a moment at least.
The lavender stems he had laid out around the upturned mound of dirt seemed so terrible improper-he wished he could find roses, but that would mean going closer to the two-leg barn areas nearby and outside of a fear of being shot he didn't want to cause more trouble than WindClan was already struggling through. But it was painfully tempting to do it, he wanted to rush desperately into the garden area there and rip every stem from the vine to bring back so at the very least his friend could have the right flowers marking his grave.
Should he say something then at least? He was alone right now, but surely other cats might soon arrive to say goodbye and he mentally fought himself on whether to speak his heart and expose it to them or just hold his tongue and let the words die in his chest. It did not take long for Dandelionpaw to come to a conclusion, "Rosepaw, I....I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. We should have saved you, I should have saved you..." His own voice felt unfamiliar to him then, like he was listening to the echoing cry of another in the distance, "I never got to tell you, I-...I doesn't matter. Not now, but I promise. I promise I'll keep an eye on Leechpaw for you, I'll keep the clan safe, I'll try to make sure everyone is happier, I'll..."
The sepia point had thought he was out of tears already, but found his voice heavy with them as he spoke one last line, "I'll learn to make nicer flower crowns."


Cats dying was always rough, but an apprentice? It left Sootstar speechless, to see cats nearly as young as her own children be taken to live in the starry sky so soon. She hadn't been close to the tom, no, they had barely interacted save for passing each other by and patrols. Yet she knew Rosepaw had been Duskfire's apprentice, knew Rosepaw was kin to Leechpaw, friend to many his age she imagines too. WindClan would mourn his loss for quite awhile, but at least with the stone placed he could ascend to the stars.

Sootstar sits nearby, idly listening to the masked medicine cat say his final words to his fallen companion. Her paws were dirt-stained from digging, numb from the cold too... and her heart felt heavy.

When Dandelionpaw is finished speaking, she gives her new medicine cat a sympathetic look before casting her gaze down upon the beautifully decorated grave. "I, Sootstar, thank you for your service to your clan, Rosepaw. With the rock placed upon your grave, may your connection to StarClan grow stronger so that they may find and guide your soul safely to your new hunting grounds." Sootstar meows, pressing her paw firmly to the risen earth as if to touch his shoulder.

"I pray that you find warmth, plentiful prey, and long-lasting peace where you're heading. Watch over us, Rosepaw, until we are all united again." With that, she steps away and leaves room for anyone else who wanted to speak a few words. Sootstar hopes the words she could muster would suffice, and she hopes everything she prayed for would come true for Rosepaw.


( primary character / "speech" / ic opinions )

· SOOTSTAR, female — she / her
╰ ‣ 31 moons . pisces. ages on the first
╰ ‣ windclan leader . marsh-born . believes in starclan
╰ ‣ former soldier of the marsh group

· DOMESTIC FELINE, smells like heather and wet dirt , status — 100%
╰ ‣ blue smoke . scarred chest, difficult to see through fur . green eyes

· ESTJ-A ❝
EXECTUTIVE ❞ , Slytherin, Lawful Evil
╰ ‣ Cunning, brash, fierce, confident, self-reliant, envious & selfish
╰ ‣ finds great difficulty in relating to others . can be cruel, usually shows mercy to those she can find sympathy with

· SOOT CLAW x PEBBLE BREEZE, sister to Pebblenose
╰ ‣ heterosexual. romantically interested in Weaselclaw
╰ ‣ mother to owlpaw & shrikepaw
╰ ‣ average fighter . skilled hunter .
╰ ‣ will start fights . unlikely to flee .
╰ ‣ attack in underline . penned by user @ava.
╭── ⋅ ⋅ ── ✩ ── ⋅ ⋅ ──╮

His white paws, too, are stained with the earth they've pressed over young Rosepaw's body. He feels numb, his heart heavy strange grief. He's never felt this before -- a Clanmate, dying. A WindClanner, lost before he could really grow into his own paws. It had been different with Sootstar -- he'd been in love with her, had believed that StarClan would bring her back.

Rosepaw is gone. He had but one life, and it had been stolen from him so cruelly. Weaselclaw listens to Dandelionpaw's eulogy and bows his head as Sootstar finishes her own.

He pads to the edge of Rosepaw's grave, and his words are heavy feeling as they leave his mouth. "Rosepaw, you would have made a fine WindClan warrior, and you fought like one in your last battle." A flicker of anger dances through a steely blue gaze. "You'll be avenged, and you'll be remembered. I hope the hunting is easy, where you are."

He steps back into line, pressing himself to Sootstar with a rare surge of emotion, of desperation to be close to her. How cruel the world could be. Rosepaw had trained with Owlpaw. He searches the gathering of cats for Duskfire, knows the deputy's heart must be hurting. Oh, how his would be, too. How his is.

- ,,

She'd avoided this moment. The pain, the agony, the exhaustion- the realization that Rosepaw was gone still didn't stick right for her. She stands behind the rest of the vigil party, hurt flashing in her eyes as Sootstar sets down a stone on the grave. Rosepaw was no warrior, he was a child who needed to be protected. She doesn't take the time to tell him her goodbyes- she'd never been good at them, after all. Instead, she lifts her head to the sky and takes a look at the stars, whispering soft words of apologies and thanks to Rosepaw.

"We could have done more. I.. I think to think." Hyacinth speaks softly, a crack in her tone as she turns to leave. Her father always told her that anger did one no good, but Hyacinth found it bubbling inside of her like a boiling pot, the lid clattering with the heat of the steam. Her teeth grits together, and Hyacinth swears in this moment that she would find a way to get rid of those killer beasts. She wasn't going to be standing at a child's grave anymore.

Never again.



Dusk was silent where he stood. He didn't know what to say, entirely lacked the words. He'd failed to prepare and protect Rosepaw, and now they lay beneath the ground never to be seen or heard from again. A part of him knew that it wasn't really his fault, that there had just been too much happening too quickly for anyone to do anything, but that didn't stop the grief and guilt from puncturing his heart like the talons of the hawk that had taken his apprentice. If only he'd been paying more attention, or if he'd only reacted a little bit faster. If only he'd trained Rosepaw harder, pushed them farther. Maybe all of this could have been avoided.

So there he was, standing at Rosepaws grave because he knew he owed the boy at least that much, but that didn't stop his ears from burning with shame. He was almost glad that Inky wasn't around anymore because he wouldn't have been able to look at the other tom without feeling sick, knowing full well they would only try to comfort him. And Duskfire didn't deserve comfort.

So he sat his vigil near the grave just as silent, letting the cries and apologies and the prayers of his clanmates fall into muted background noise as green eyes stared vacantly ahead. His shoulder and body ached from his fight with the hawk still but he had no intention of heading back to camp any time soon. And maybe that was just his way of punishing himself, but hey, somebody had to do it.

windclan warrior - male - 20 months - homosexual - polyamorous - single - tall, strong bengal tomcat