Everything's More Interesting at Night (Mallowpaw/Owlpaw) Jun 6, 2016 0:47:12 GMT
Post by annuen on Jun 6, 2016 0:47:12 GMT
It wasn't always immediately clear to Owlpaw when the 'appropriate' time to go to sleep was (or maybe he didn't care to notice). There always seemed to be someone moving around the camp, speaking in low whispers, or testing the limit of the moors with a careful eye -- as though waiting for someone, or something, to spring over the lip of the camp's small rise and wreck absolute havoc --, and somehow these quiet going-ons always kept him infinitely more interested than the thought of sleep. Owlpaw was quite the nocturnal creature, true to his name. Even as a kit, he had given his mother some trouble in being the most active at night. While most others in the Nursery were simply trying to sleep, he could be found squirming beside his littermates, in the early days mewling for food, and later staring wide-eyed at the entrance of the Nursery, wondering what lay beyond the prickly gorse. And he hadn't kicked the habit when he became an apprentice, although sleeping in no longer became an option, when he found it hard to close his eyes at night. Now, the apprentice had simply adapted to taking naps during the day, while spending much of the night too engrossed in watching to fall asleep.
Everything was more interesting to Owlpaw in the dark. Glossed over by shadow, the camp took on an entirely new feel, and lit only by the light of the moon -- or, sometimes, solely by the light of the distant stars -- his clanmates, too, evolved into something entirely different, with their familiar pelts patched over by new and interesting shadows. The moors during the daytime were exposed, bathed in harsh yellow sunlight, and on a good day, you could see countless foxlengths between yourself and the next, distant hill. But at night? Owlpaw didn't have much experience on the moors at night, but he could imagine by what camp felt like.
At night, the camp felt as much closed in as open. When he looked around, he sometimes became overwhelmed by the shadows, and if he were being particularly irrational, or he had been spooked, they could trap him, blinding his senses, and making him feel enclosed in a space even smaller than his own body. But they also made everything feel a bit more empty, more open. They reached far beyond the ridge that made up the camp border, out into the moors and beyond, where Fourtrees and the other clans were, wrapped in mystery. And the feeling was only amplified when he looked up... Starclan was endless on a clear night.
There was always something interesting to look at, when the borders of your senses fell away like that.
Tonight, it was the wind. He had settled down to sleep with most of the other Windclanners, for once, but no sooner had he shut his eyes that the wind began howling across the moors, buffeting the shallow hollow and enticing weird echoes from the grasses. He wasn't afraid, but in the half-light of the moon, his pale green eyes were wide and curious, disks of color sweeping across the shadowed camp from his space on the ground. He chased the gusts with his eyes, turning first one way, then the other, as the bushes and grasses were jerked impatiently by the fast-flowing air. Every few seconds everything would stop, and the grasses would settle with a rustle born of lost movement. But just as silence blanketed the camp, it all would start again, and Owlpaw was back to chasing the shadowy movements of the grasses, something akin to excitement flickering in his eyes with each snapping breeze.
Eventually, the tom sat up. He had half a mind to peek over the lip of the ridge and see what the moor looked like when buffeted by wind at night, but fear of waking anyone else up kept him in place. To his credit, the most he ever did while awake at this hour was explore around the camp, and only where there weren't others nearby sleeping. But tonight both his siblings and his parents were nestled relatively close, and he would be hard-pressed to pick his way past them, if he were to peek at the moors. Besides, he shouldn't be edging so close to the end of camp at this hour, anyway. There was enough for him to see here.