Or…my (most likely only) attempt at a Warriors fanfiction…
The woods beyond his housefolk’s garden just seemed intimidating to Toby. For one, he didn’t like to get his paws wet, so he didn’t want to stray too close to the lake. For another, the Twoleg place where his housefolk and their neighbors lived was familiar, comfortable, and safe. At the lake, and in the woods, there were strange animals, and they could be dangerous to kittypets like Toby.
He had heard stories of wild cats living out there, in groups of fierce fighters, not afraid to defend their hunting grounds with tooth and claw. Some of the other kittypets, the brave ones who wandered further than their gardens, and even over the Thunderpath, had seen them. A few had even talked to these wild cats, who called themselves Warriors, and lived in a way most kittypets could never imagine.
But sometimes kittypets went to live with them. When the lake flooded several seasons ago, and some of the Twoleg families had to move away while their nests were being repaired, Frankie and Jessy from down the road had to seek shelter with the Warriors. It was the group called ThunderClan who took them in when their Twolegs had to leave the village. Jessy came back, and then went with her family to a town by the mountains. But Frankie stayed with ThunderClan. He came back to visit every now and again. Except he called himself Stormcloud now.
“Warriors have different kinds of names from kittypets,” he’d explain to anyone who gave him a confused look.
“Can you imagine?” said Rascal, who lived next to Toby. “Having to catch your own food, and sleeping outside in leaf-bare?”
“It’s not so bad,” shrugged Minty, who had stayed with Jessy and Frankie (er, Stormcloud) in the woods after the flood. “The Clans stick together, look out for each other.”
The Warriors hadn’t always lived by the lake. They had come from a forest far away; they had made a Great Journey to reach their new home here, after their forest was mostly cut down to build a new Thunderpath. The thought made Toby sad. He couldn’t imagine having to leave your home in that way, so quickly and against your will.
Because of that, and because some of the wild cats had helped kittypets after the flood, Toby felt sympathy, compassion, and a sort of respect and awe towards the Warriors. He knew Minty felt he wouldn’t be alive without their help.
But still, Toby wondered, if it was him, forced out of his cozy nest, having to hunt for himself, and sleep under the stars, in all kinds of weather, would he be all right? Would he ultimately choose the life of a Warrior, or return to the life he knew?
“One of our greatest leaders was born a kittypet,” Stormcloud told Toby one day. “His name was Firestar. He died before the flood happened, before my time with the Clan. But the stories they tell about him! How he was just like us, living with a Twoleg family and eating their food and wearing a collar. But then he left his housefolk near the old forest, and went to live with ThunderClan, and after many moons he became their leader. He led them through attacks from their enemies, and sickness, and on the Great Journey… He saved them so many times, and they were lucky to have him looking out for them.”
Would he able to do that? Toby wondered. Could he ever be a leader like Firestar?
If the Clans allowed kittypets to become that powerful, maybe they truly weren’t that bad.