"What in the name of StarClan happened to you?!" Skystreak looked as if she was about to leap at the injured cats at any moment.

"I told you not to look for trouble, Specklestone. And what did you do?" She didn't wait for an answer. She lashed her stubby tail angrily.

"Now look at you! You have lead your Clanmates into danger, and one will have a scar that she will never forget! You are a disgrace to this Clan!" The white she-cat scraped the ground with unsheathed claws.

"Now Skystreak, I'm sure that these worn out cats have an explanation to their little mishap? Pebblestar looked at Specklestone expectantly. The rest of StormClan had gathered around to hear her tale as well.

Reluctantly, at first, the gray speckled she-cat told the story of the intruding rogues. She made sure that she picked up every detail, and didn't exaggerate. Though it tore her to pieces, Specklestone even told about Risingstorm "inviting" the tabby tom over the border. When she was all finished, the all of the Clan cats' fur was ruffled as if they were ready to fight. Occasional yowls of protest rose from them.

Pebblestar raised his tail for silence. He spoke, "Risingstorm, Goldenpaw. Is this story that Specklestone told true, to the very last word?"

Goldenpaw nodded, while Risingstorm mewed, "Yes, Pebblestar."

The light blue leader nodded with approval. "Then Skystreak, you owe these cats an apology. Never scorn a cat if you don't know their story."

Skystreak's tail went down. "Sorry, I should have known better." She apologized to the patrol. They all blinked in acknowledgement.

Pebblestar turned to Risingstorm. "As for you, you have been a warrior for quite some time now. You should know better than to antagonize an intruder like that. As for you punishment, you will be cleaning ticks off the elders for half a moon. Next time, I won't be so easy on you."

Now it was Risingstorm's turn to be embarrassed. "It won't happen again, Pebblestar." He mumbled.

"I'll see that it won't." He meowed, gesturing with his tail that the cats were dismissed.

The surrounding cats began to break up now, seeing that the excitement was over. Specklestone leaned towards Risingstorm to whisper in his ear, "I'm sorry. I should have..."

But the blue tabby tom cut her off, "No, no. It was my fault. I can't just antagonize cats like that. You did the right thing by telling the truth."

Speckstone felt their pelts brushing for a moment, and wished that that moment could have lasted forever. 

The End

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