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Walking the Cat

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Treepelt Halfpaw: Treepelt entered Clover’s room after walking back with Stonegit, pushing open the door with her back since her arms were full of clean bandages. “Clover?” she said softly. “You up?”

Clover Rose: “Yes.” Clover turns her head towards the door as Treepelt walks in. “I don’t even know the last time I slept well . . "

Treepelt Halfpaw: "I know what that feels like.” She sat at her bedside and began unwinding the bandages again, as slowly and gingerly as possible. “How’s the wound?”

Clover Rose: “It’s … I don’t actually know. It doesn’t feel like it got any worse, but it doesn’t feel much better either.” Clover looks away from Tree as she unwinds the bandages, not particularly wanting to see what they look like. “Thank you, though, for helping.”

Treepelt Halfpaw: Treepelt waved a hand. “It’s nothing. Since Tezz is out doing…whatever he’s doing.” She hissed softly as she unwound the last bandage. “Yeah, that’s not looking so good…where did Tezz go, anyway?”

Clover Rose: Clover pointedly ignores the comment about how it’s not looking good. “He mentioned . . hunting the witches. You know, the type of thing that killed everyone at her village.” She gestures to Melira, who was curled up at the edge of the bed, asleep.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Pausing in re-wrapping the wound, Tree looked up at Clover, furrowing her brow. “Stonegit let him do that?”

Clover Rose: Clover shrugged slightly before wincing at the pain from her right shoulder. Shouldn’t have done that. “He’s the only other one besides Kiri who’s actually seen a witch."

Treepelt Halfpaw: She pursed her lips. “As long as he gets back safe, right?” She finished with the last of the bandages. “Okay, look here, you need to get outside. Fresh air. Can you walk?”

Clover Rose: Clover frowns, not terribly happy with the idea. “I don’t know … and I don’t want to go outside.”

Treepelt Halfpaw: "Come on,” Tree insisted. “It helped me. What are you afraid of?”

Clover Rose: “I’m not . . I’m not afraid! I just don’t want to go out!” Clover doesn’t want to tell Tree that she’s just afraid of going out in general, considering the fact that three of the worst things to happen to her recently happened outside.

Treepelt Halfpaw: “Come on, you can’t stay cooped up in here forever.” Prodding Clover helped distract Tree from everything storming in her head at the moment. “You can’t go out by yourself, and I can’t really, either. Let’s go.” She started tugging at Clover’s good arm.

Clover Rose: Clover sighs, slowly pulling herself out of bed. “Fine.” She grabs her cloak and bundles herself up best she can, knowing that it’s cold outside.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Treepelt donned her fur half-cape as well. “Are you bringing Melira?”

Clover Rose: “We might as well. She hasn’t been out in a while either.” Clover goes over to the little girl and wakes her gently. “We’re going outside, okay?” The little girl nods eagerly and climbs down from the bed. When it occurs to her that Tree is in the room, she runs over and hugs her legs. “Twee!”

Treepelt Halfpaw: “Oh!” Tree stopped, wobbling slightly as the little girl wrapped her arms around her knees. “Hey, little one.” She lifted her up under the arms since Clover wasn’t able to carry her and put Melira on her hip. “Let’s go see what kind of trouble we can get into.”

Clover Rose: Melira makes an attempt at wrapping her arms around Tree’s waist as she is settled into place, and Clover smiles at the two of them. “I think she likes you, Tree.” Let’s get this over with … “Was there any particular place you were planning on going, or are we just wandering?”

Treepelt Halfpaw: Tree shrugged. “I’m sure we’ll think of something interesting to do. Not too far outside, though, I think it’s snowing harder.”

Clover Rose: “Don’t put her down, she’ll start throwing snow everywhere.” Clover murmurs, rolling her eyes slightly as they headed outside. She watched with a smile as Melira made grabby hands at the snowflakes going past, attempting to catch one. When she did catch one, she proudly held it up so Clover and Tree could see.

Treepelt Halfpaw: “You got it!” Tree bumped noses with her and she giggled. “Look, watch this.” She stuck out her tongue and caught one of the white flakes in her mouth, shivering at the sudden splash of cold. “Mmmmm.”

Clover Rose: Clover watches the two of them, especially Melira. The little girl claps her hands excitedly, attempting to do the same as Tree. She scrunches up her nose and begins pouting when the snowflakes land near her eyes instead. “I haven’t seen her this happy since before Tezz left … The first time.”

Treepelt Halfpaw: Tree watched Clover with sad concern, momentarily forgetting the little girl squirming in her arms. “You two really love him, huh?” she murmured.

Clover Rose: “Y-yes . . we do.” Clover looks up at Tree momentarily, biting her bottom lip anxiously. “You know how it feels . . right? Loving someone so much it feels like your heart might burst? You have Vox.”

Treepelt Halfpaw: “Yes.” Tree’s cheeks warmed slightly as she thought of Vox’s gentle touch, his playful jokes and sweet kisses. The thought of his death grew as faint as it ever had been, though guilt still lay in the dark corners of all her bright memories. Maybe I’m getting better.

“But…” She hesitated, taking a deep breath. “It can hurt a lot, loving someone. Anything you do to them…is a hundred times more significant, a hundred times more sensitive.” Tilting her head back to look at the falling snow, she added, “It’s worth it, though.”

Clover Rose: “Is it? I’ve never felt anything like this before … I don’t know much about anything, to be honest.” Clover stares down at the ground, quite humiliated to be bringing up the subject of her lost memories. “I don’t know who I was before the rebellion. Before all of this. It’s just … empty.”

Treepelt Halfpaw: Treepelt frowned and adjusted Melira. “What do you mean?”

Clover Rose: “I literally can’t remember a thing. If you tried to ask me about something that happened two weeks before the rebellion, I wouldn’t be able to tell you. My memories start when the rebellion began.” Clover glances up at Tree, trying to gauge her expression.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Tree’s lips parted, and she went into a puzzled flurry of thought. “Wh…what happened? Did you…did you remember your name? What’s the last thing you remember?”

Clover Rose: Clover frowns as she considers Tree’s questions, never having given much thought to it before. “I don’t remember anything from before … well, from before the rebels broke out of the dungeon. I wasn’t in it though, I can tell you that much. I have a leather headband . . it has Clover Rose carved into it and it seemed like that was probably my name.”

Treepelt Halfpaw: Ears twitching, Tree considered her words. “I can’t think of anything that would make you lose your memories…maybe there was a bad accident?”

Clover Rose: “I … don’t know. Clearly.” Clover deadpans the last word, looking at Tree with a completely blank expression.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Treepelt held her hand up defensively. “All right, all right. Just checking.” She was quiet for a minute. “You must’ve come from around my region…clearly.” She waved a hand at Clover from head to toe.

Clover Rose: Clover’s ears twitch as she considers this. “Well, that does seem likely. Are there many places where people like … us … live?” She knew none of this, and was genuinely curious.

Treepelt Halfpaw: She shifted uncomfortably. “Yeah, there’s…there’s a few villages in the Wild South…that’s where I’m from…”

Clover Rose: “Are the villages close together? I … maybe you knew me before? Or at least saw me once? It would be nice to know where I’m from at the very least.” Clover looks at Tree hopefully, even though the nagging voice in the back of her head tells her Tree probably doesn’t have all the answers.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Tree scuffed the snow with her boot. “I, uh…I don’t remember much, but yes, they’re close together and, uh…no, I don’t remember seeing you.”

Why am I lying to her?

Clover Rose: Clover’s face just falls as Tree speaks. “Oh … Alright.” She kicks at some of the snow she was standing in, blinking rapidly in an attempt to keep tears from falling. She mentally scolds herself for being so upset.

Why does it matter? It’s not like I’d remember it any more if she did.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Guilt ravaged Tree again and she turned away, pushing Clover’s face out of her head. It’s best for both of us if she doesn’t know.

Clover Rose: “You’re .  . . absolutely sure?” Clover asks hesitantly, not wanting to push the matter too far. It really wouldn’t be fair to Tree to keep pushing her for information she didn’t have … but Clover wanted to know. Melira observes the two of them in silence, her features scrunching up a bit with confusion.

Treepelt Halfpaw: “I don’t know!” Her voice came out louder than she wanted and she sighed, pinning her ears back. “I don’t…I just don’t know. I ran away when I was little. I found Haddock and joined up. I don’t…I don’t think much about my past.”

Clover Rose: Clover visibly flinched and took a few steps back as Tree rose her voice. “I’m … I’m sorry Tree.” Without another word Clover turns, fleeing back to her room before she can cause anymore damage.

Melira will be fine … it’s clear she and Tree get along.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Treepelt’s stomach dropped. “No, Clover, wait—wait!” She ran after her and grabbed her good arm, bringing her to a stop.

“I’ll…I don’t know a lot, but I can tell you…what my village was like…and we can see if it…triggers anything?”

Clover Rose: “I don’t think it will work … but okay. We might as well try, right?” Clover, although skeptical, decided that it wasn’t a terrible idea. She pulls away from Tree’s grasp, adjusting her cloak so it was properly covering her enough to keep her warm again.

Treepelt Halfpaw: “Okay. Come on, let’s get back inside, while we talk.” Tree began musing as they trudged through the snow, which had gotten a bit deeper as they had stayed outside. “There’s…umm…it was a very outdoor place, it…was in the middle of a forest, it went on for miles, and the huts were makeshift, rudimentary…” She paused, trying to think of something else to say.

Clover Rose: “None of this is sounding familiar . . ” Clover murmurs, already sounding somewhat dejected, even though she’d figured it wouldn’t work. She’d already gotten her hopes up, foolishly.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Tree tossed her hair out of her face and bit her lip. “I didn’t think it would…I’m sorry, it was a while ago. I really only remember the dungeon..and…” She waved a hand vaguely. “All of…that.”

Clover Rose: “But … there has to be something else! That can’t be all you remember … ” Clover trails off, hanging her head in defeat. Her tail droops, nearly dragging in the snow, and her hears flatten against her head.

But what if it really is? What if that’s all she remembers? And she was basically your only chance at finding out who you were … before.

Treepelt Halfpaw: "Look, let’s just…go inside. You must be hungry. You haven’t been eating, I heard.”

Clover Rose: “I’m not hungry.” Clover murmurs, not looking up at Tree. She just walked inside quietly, her tail still drooping.

Treepelt Halfpaw: Tree worked her jaw. It hurt to see this wedge driven between her and Clover.

But she can’t know.

She can’t know what happened back home.

Clover Rose: Clover turns and looks at Tree for a moment, genuinely confused about what caused her to forget most of her memories. Then she turns and walks back inside, looking for a place to sit down.

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