It was a rainy leaf-fall. The small black-and-white she-cat carried a gray she-kit and a sand-coloured tom. They weren't her kits. They weren't even from the same litter.  She ran and carried them to the nursery. Nobody must know her secret.

"These are my kits, Rainkit and Leafkit." She told the other queen.

"They're beautiful. Good job." Specklemist mewed.

I didn't do a good job at all. Echopelt thought. 

Chapter oneEdit

"Come on, Leafkit!" Rainkit called. "Come on Cinderkit, Poppykit, Lilykit!"

The four kits bundled out of the nursery.

"I can't wait until a few days when I won't be the only tom in the den anymore." Leafkit spat.

"Are you sure you must wait?" Lakestar rose up above him.

Leafkit's eyes shone as he looked up at the tall gray tom.

"After today, there won't be any more kits in the nursery until the next queen comes along." Lakestar headed to the Talltree to call a meeting. "Leafkit, Rainkit, Cinderkit, Poppykit, Lilykit!"

The kits trembled and padded forward.

"You have all reached the age of six moons and are ready to be apprenticed. From this day, you will be known as Leafpaw, Rainpaw, Cinderpaw, Poppypaw, and Lilypaw! Leafpaw, your mentor will be Featherflash. Rainpaw, your mentor will be Stormpool. Cinderpaw, your mentor will be Graycloud. Poppypaw, your mentor will be Swiftfoot. And Lilypaw, your mentor will be Shadowpelt."

Rainpaw carefully leaped from the branch of the Talltree to touch noses with Stormpool. Stormpool was a dark gray, almost-black she-cat with white speckling her back and stormy navy blue eyes.

Rainpaw was really glad she had gotten Stormpool as her mentor, she was a very strong warrior. Leafpaw, Cinderpaw, Poppypaw, and Lilypaw did the same.

"So what're we doing first?" Rainpaw chimed to Stormpool.

"Well, I was going to show you the territory, then if we have time left teach you a few of my favourite battle moves." She purred.

"That sounds fun!" Rainpaw mewed.

"Well then, c'mon! Let's get something to eat first!" Stormpool said.

Rainpaw picked out a plump mouse. She ate the mouse in three bites and cleaned her face.

"So is anyone coming with us?" Rainpaw asked.

"All the new apprentices. They might not stay for the battle training though."

"Alright!" Rainpaw mewed. "Let's go!"