*****ATTENTION: All of the characters from the actual play CATS belong to the Really Useful Group, and all my made up Characters ARE MINE! So don't steal them, if you want to use any ask me! This fic isn't exactly rated 'G' so if you can't handle it, don't read it! ENJOY!*****
Starrla sat alone and bored in the oak tree. She was thinking. Silently she swung her legs back and forth, she was sitting on a branch high among the large leaves of the oak where she sat. Her head was cocked to the side, and her dreamy violet eyes were glowing with thought.
It had been nearly a month since Flame’s death, and nothing had happened. Etcetera and Macavity hadn’t had their impending fight. Vulcana hadn’t spoken to Starrla, and Ratter hadn’t spoken to anyone. Macavity had remained alone in his chambers, for weeks no one had seen him.
Starrla was just bored. At first she had been glad for the silence, and the long awaited break from Macavity, but the silence had begun to gnaw at her mind. She missed Macavity terribly, not really him, himself, but just his presence. She didn’t love him that way. Sure she loved him; it was a corrupt love, but love nonetheless.
Starrla had been feeling lonely and insecure lately. She was used to Macavity’s strong arms, his pounding heart, his evil smile, his piercing eyes. She was used to being manipulated, and she missed it terribly. Even when she hadn’t been with Macavity, she had always somehow felt him there: That exhilarating feeling that at any moment he might appear beside her. The knowledge that even if she couldn’t see him, his eyes could very well be fixed on her.
Starrla was used to knowing she was the focus of Macavity’s thoughts, however corrupt they might be, and this not knowing had caused a deep hollow feeling to come into her chest. These weeks of silence had been depressing for Starrla, and she desperately needed a thrill.
As if Macavity had read Starrla’s mind, he announced that a meeting of the strays was to be held that night. Nearly everyone was present at the meeting. Starrla, who was towards the front of the crowd, tried time and again to catch Macavity’s eye, but he never once looked at her.
“I’m sure you’ve all noticed the silence over the fortress the last few weeks.” Macavity spoke very slow and purposefully. “I have been planning something, something big. Something that could mean the downfall of the Jellicles, but it would take a lot of work...”
“I’ll work!” Starrla shouted out as she stood up. She was desperate for Macavity to atleast look at her.
And look he did... Macavity glared furiously at the queen who had spoken. This went on for several moments, and there was a grave silence. Slowly the corner’s of Macavity’s mouth started to curl up into a very evil smile, until his whole face portrayed his evil thoughts. “Yes, you will work, Starrla.” He said this very coldly.
Starrla was unsure on how to respond, and in her nervous state she fell to joking. She remembered laughing at an inside joke she and Vulcana had had about Flame and “That attitude towards the Jellicles...” (It was one of those things that only she or Vulcana would have found funny, but Starrla was terribly confused by Macavity and didn’t pause to think about this.)
“Macavity,” Starrla said loudly, with a somewhat giddy expression, “Its that attitude towards the Jellicles that Flame was protesting...”
Macavity’s green eyes grew dark and red. “What,” he exploded, “Would you know about the Jellicles? Or what Flame thought about them for that matter?” He was furious!
Starrla had seen him like this before, but his anger had never been aimed at her. What had he been thinking about these last few weeks? What had he been doing? What had he done? Starrla looked around the room, with a sudden knowledge. Her stomach sank, and she felt sick as her suspicion was confirmed. Etcetera wasn’t here. Why hadn’t Starrla noticed this before?
Starrla’s thoughts raced, Macavity had killed Etcetera! He had killed her, and somehow he was going mad! He wouldn’t have ever really killed Etcetera, he wouldn’t have ever blown up at Starrla like this... Why was he avoiding her eyes? What was wrong with Macavity? Starrla realized that this was hopelessly out of control, and she began sobbing uncontrollably. “I’m sorry!” She gasped, “I’m so sorry I crossed you!”
“That’s what I thought.” Macavity sneered, and his eyes returned to the familiar manipulating green... But there was something else there; something hidden in the deep pools that were his eyes. What was it? Starrla was so confused! She wanted to comfort him, and help him, but if he wouldn’t even tell her what was wrong, she didn’t know how she could.
Starrla sat, huddled next to Ratter. It was pouring rain, and there was a fierce wind. The boulder they were next to wasn’t offering much shelter.
Macavity had told them the beginning part of his plan; how he needed to know something from Jack. Macavity had only told Starrla what it was he wanted to know from Jack...not Ratter.
Jack was the fearless leader of another group of strays, a group that hated Macavity and his strays. Strays that had fought furiously and madly to win their way to the top. He was known as a merciless tyrant who manipulated everyone. Jack. Jack was evil in its purest form. Macavity despised him. Ratter was afraid of him. Starrla was fearfully intrigued by him.
Macavity had assigned Ratter and Starrla to this task; to getting information out of Jack. Everyone had been shocked at who the Hidden Paw had assigned to do the job. If Macavity’s best warriors had failed to persuade Jack, how would this young queen and tom? And they all knew Macavity didn’t even know the answer to this himself. This just furthered their confusion, because it was common knowledge that Macavity had some sick fancy for Starrla, so why on earth would he send her off to inevitable capture and possible death?
Starrla was cold and wet. She shivered in Ratter’s arms as he held her close, trying to warm her. Ratter was used to the cold, he had felt it often before he and his father joined Macavity at the fortress. But Starrla had never been cold like this before.
Starrla pressed closer to Ratter, she was miserable, but determined not to cry. She knew that Ratter still cared for her. But she also knew that he was torn by what she had convinced him into doing to Flame, and his feelings for her. For a fleeting moment, as he was comforting her so sincerely, Starrla almost felt bad for what she had done... But that was only for a moment.
“We should move on.” Ratter said softly. He lifted Starrla to her feet, and then started walking with heavy steps, in the direction Macavity had told them they would find Jack’s lair.
Starrla said nothing, but stumbled after Ratter. She had never been so miserable in all her life. “There’s no way things can possibly get worse...” Starrla thought to herself.
Starrla heard something in the tall grass behind her. She paused to find out what it was. She turned around just in time to see someone springing at her, it was a tom, a scruffy looking orange tabby with bright black eyes. He collided with her and she fell to the ground with the impact. He fell on top of her and quickly pinned her to the ground, muffling her scream. He then proceeded to tie her, gag her, blindfold her, pick her up, and carry her off over his shoulder. Starrla heard a startled reaction from Ratter, and a muffled thump as he hit the ground, subject to a similar fate. Neither of the captors said a word.
After a horribly uncomfortable journey they came to a stop, then start...the sound of steel gates being opened and shut, and then Starrla felt herself carried a little bit further, and finally she was set down and untied.
Starrla snarled at the tom who had been carrying her, he was the same scruffy orange tom who had knocked her down. But Starrla stopped snarling when she got a good look about them; there was something about those bright black eyes... Starrla nearly stopped breathing all together: it couldn’t be!
The tom obviously realized it at the same moment, for he had grown very still and his face bore a shocked expression.
Starrla looked right into those bright black eyes she had once known so well. “Aero?” she asked in a timid voice.
“Oh Starr! Oh hell, its me, its me Starr, Aero!” He was so overwhelmed: seeing Starrla was like seeing a ghost.
Starrla ran into the outstretched arms of her brother, sobbing hysterically. Her already chaotic emotions were just too overwhelming: It was Aerotiger! When Starrla was a very small kitten her mother had told her how Aero had runaway, and that he had died. And now to find him alive!
“...so we’ve got to get in to see Jack!” Starrla concluded to Aerotiger.
Aerotiger looked thoughtfully at his now grown up sister, and the silvery grey tom who was her friend. “Two problems with that, Starr.” he said. “First, no one gets in to see The Boss. And second, call him Jack around the wrong cats and you just might find yourself all torn up and bloody.”
“But...” Aero hesitated, oblivious to Ratter... Starrla was after all his sister, but his allegiance was to Jack. “I suppose I might be able to pull a few strings to get you in to see The Boss.”
Starrla grinned at Ratter, and he feebly smiled back. “Thanks so much Aero!” she said, beaming.
Aerotiger grinned back at his sister. “Don’t forget, I’m not promising anything... It all depends on The Boss.”
Macavay glared down at the two toms and the stunning black queen with the radiant gold stripes. Something was up. He had only heard the last part of their conversation... ‘So they want to see Jack, do they?’ Macavay thought to himself. ‘Obviously up to something, but I’ll come in and shake ‘em about until they don’t know who’s side they’re on, and then I’ll see if they can’t do a little something for me, especially that queen...’ Macavay sneered down at them, ‘Perhaps their interest in Jack could be of some use to me.’
Starrla silently followed the guard who had been assigned to lead her and Ratter along the winding dark corridors to where they might find Jack. Aero had explained that he didn’t think it would be wise for him to spend a lot of time around her and Ratter, and they had agreed. So Starrla followed this guard, he was a dark grey tom, very muscular, but his eyes were what petrified Starrla... Those, pale blue eyes; so pale that at times she wondered if his eyes had color at all, or if they were a solid white. Every time they met her own shivers to ran down her spine, and she had to turn away.
After a long walk they came to a great wooden door, with steal spikes protruding out from it. The guard with the terrifying soulless eyes knocked loudly on the door. There was some hollering from the inside, but she couldn’t make out what was said. The guard obviously understood, for he pulled out a ring of keys, unlocked the great door, and then proceeded to open it up, as Starrla’s wide eyes grew wider.
There before them was the largest room she had ever seen, huge, full of metal spikes, and dangerous looking weapons. And there at the front was a large throne-like chair, and sitting in it was a majestic tom, who could be none other than Jack.
Starrla stared at the tom, he was so tall. He had to be the tallest cat she had ever seen in her life, and he was incredibly muscular, and his fur... His fur was a shocking shade of yellowish tan; a gorgeous color! His mane was an explosion of fire, bright reds mixed in with the same yellow color of his fur; a mane that put Macavity’s mane to shame. Starrla’s eyes stopped taking in anything but Jack. Jack. Jack. He was gorgeous!
As Starrla stood mesmerized by the amazing leader, Jack, she was oblivious to her surroundings, she noticed nothing, not even Ratter.
As Starrla was gaping wide eyed at Jack, Ratter rolled his eyes. ‘The least she could do is attempt to keep her composure!’ Ratter thought, annoyed at Starrla. If there was ever a time to make a good impression, this was it. Ratter strayed his eyes from Starrla and Jack to take in their surroundings: It was always a good idea, incase they needed to make a break for it. Although, Ratter had the sick knowledge down in the depths of his heart, that if it came down to running, it would be useless. He also knew that he and Starrla stood no chance if it came down to fighting. They were, after all, in Jack’s lair. In his thrown room. In fact, they were in the very center of his estate; no chance of escape.
As Ratter moved his eyes around the room he saw something; something that caught his eye. Ratter gasped. He stared. His eyes grew wide. Ratter could not believe the queen he saw.
Starrla snapped out of the mesmerizing dream world of Jack when Ratter clapped his hand down hard on her back. She turned around, saw his dazzled eyes, and she followed their gaze to a stunning queen. The queen was a shining silver color, with some white striped patches around her face, her arms, and her feet. “She’s beautiful.” Starrla murmured.
“She’s my sister.” Ratter muttered in disbelief.
“Your sister?” Starrla faced Ratter in surprise. It was then she noticed the resemblance. Ratter was a silverish grey cat; perhaps he might shine as well if they hadn’t been living in such rough conditions. Starrla stared at Ratter’s face. He had the same markings, his eyes were the same crystal blue eyes that made the queen so enchanting.
Ratter had said nothing else, as Starrla stood studying his face. Starrla blinked in surprise at the horrified expression that crept over Ratter’s face. She followed his eyes, and cringed with jealousy at what she saw. Ratter was just horrified because that queen, with Jack, was his sister.
The silver queen had approached Jack, swaying her hips back and forth as she walked. Her crystal blue eyes were wide, and her silver lips were partially open. She was small and petite, where Jack was monstrously tall and muscular. Jack had wrapped his strong arms around her, bent down, and he had kissed her passionately.
Starrla let out a short cry before she could stop herself. Her hands flew to her mouth, but it was too late: they had been noticed.
Jack spun around to face the intruders, furious! His bottomless ocean blue eyes seemed to radiate hate at Starrla, Ratter, and the guard. Jack was still holding onto the queen’s slender arm. He jerked her towards him, and she cringed at his tight grip.
Ratter couldn’t stand seeing anything bad happen to his sister. His whole body tensed, and he clenched his fists. Starrla sensed his rage, and she slid a comforting arm around his shoulders, silently willing him to calm down. Ratter took several breaths, and he relaxed under Starrla’s gentle touch.
Jack faced the intruders. He saw how helpless they were and his hate quelled to a sinister grin directed at Ratter and Starrla. Jack waved his arm to the guard, “You are dismissed.”
The guard bowed and replied reverently, “Yes Boss.”
Starrla and Ratter didn’t turn around to watch the guard leave. The felt the air swish as he briskly walked for the door. They heard him lift the heavy wooden door and heard it close loudly and securely behind him. They were alone with Jack and the strange queen.
Jack addressed Ratter and Starrla. For the first time Ratter really took in Jack’s appearance. He was incredibly tall, and muscular. His fur was an astonishing yellow tan color, with tufts of reddish orange populating his majestic mane. And his eyes... they were a never-ending dark blue whirlpool. Ratter could see why Starrla had been gaping over this tyrant of a cat.
Jack’s voice was deep and powerful, and his manner was forceful and dangerous. “I” He motioned to himself, “I am the boss. You will show your respect, or you will pay the price.” His evil grin broadened a bit. “Perhaps I should introduce myself, I am Jack.” The way he said his name, with such purpose, it seemed to say everything about his controlling nature. “And this lovely queen is Brittnila.”
Brittnila looked admiringly up at Jack through her wide eyes.
Jack looked back down at Brittnila. Starrla, searching in his whirlpool eyes, saw a hint of adoration.
Ratter saw it too. ‘A weakness.’ He thought to himself. ‘Oh Britt!’ He looked at his sister. He and Starrla were finding all kinds of cats who used to work for Macavity now working for Jack. Ratter had never known Macavity had such a problem with runaways, but then, with as amazing a rival as Jack, it made sense to keep it secret.
Starrla gazed wonderingly at the mesmerizing Jack. It had been silent for some time now, as if Jack were expecting them to state their business. But when Starrla spoke, it was obvious he hadn’t been waiting for her opinions.
“We were sent here by Macavity.” Starrla ventured bravely.
Jack glared at Starrla, Ratter, then back to Starrla.
Brittnila’s frightened eyes grew wide, as if she knew what was to come.
“Don’t you ever say that name.” Jack boomed, his words echoing around and vibrating, godlike. “Don’t you ever mention that son of a bitch’s name again, or I’ll slit your throat.”
Starrla was shaking violently, and Ratter was staring at Jack, his jaw dropped.
There was a momentary silence, but neither Starrla, nor Ratter spoke; they had learned their lesson. Then Jack spoke again, his tone sickeningly sweet, slithery, and snakelike. “Glaise.”
The guard with the soulless eyes reappeared, as if by magic, from a side door to the room. “Here, Boss.” He said reverently.
“Glaise, take the prisoners back to their cell, before I lose my head and mutilate them.” Jack chuckled to himself. A rickety, hollow, maniacal sort of laughter.
Starrla shuddered. She and Ratter followed the frightening guard, Glaise, back through the twisting dark passageways to their cell.
Starrla woke up, unsure when she had fallen asleep, or how long she had slept. Then she heard it again; the grating sound of a razor on a metal door, or perhaps, razor-sharp claws. Starrla slunk cautiously and stealthily over to the small square door on one side of the cell. She hadn’t noticed it before, but it was as plain as day now. Starrla reached the door, pried her claws under the seal, and it slid easily open.
Starrla started! She nearly screamed at the yellow, glowing eyes laced with evil intentions, that were glaring at her from merely two inches away. She almost screamed, but an instinctive arm shot out and grabbed her. Those same razor-sharp claws whose grating had caused her to wake, dug deep into her left side, above her hip. Starrla feel limp with pain into Macavay’s tyrannical arms.
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