Chapter 12 Fight

Morning

He'd been permitted to follow behind his young female and their cubs.

Mid-Morning

Her fur was a glorious color, sparkling under the sun. It was a healthy and bright color. Her offspring were healthy as well. She made a good mother, he'd noticed.

Afternoon

That little orange thing had been too close to his female all day. She let it touch her and her cubs. He knew it was not one of her cubs, unless it was deformed, because there was another one like it, but black, following behind them.

Late Afternoon

He'd steadily grown more and more frustrated throughout the day. How he wanted to just go up to the beautiful female and rub up against her body. But that orange thing was always there. It ate the food she caught, and she bathed it, played with it, and let it near her.

Did she want it for a mate and not him?

Late Afternoon

The creepy old cat-beast had been following them since yesterday. Tarun had noticed how fixated the beast seemed on the mother; it was probably close to mating season for the cats. Which means he and Camlo were going to quickly be in a dangerous time. But the female beast didn't seem to find the current situation dangerous. She would probably know her own species' cycles better than him…

He sighed. He'd just be prepared for anything to come up. The male cat had been acting twitchy all day.

Evening

He'd had enough.

If he eliminated the competition she would look his way.

He was now stalking the orange thing; it had separated from the black thing and the beautiful female to go play with her cubs. He had to be more stealthy than usual because he'd noticed how protective she'd been of the thing, almost as much as her own cubs.

He could have waited for her cubs to reach maturity, which would be soon, he could smell, for her to come to him. But he was not going to stand by and let another male take his place. Yes, the thing was male, though it could hardly be called as such. It would never be able to protect the female or any offspring with its build.

Evening

Tarun notice a quick about-face of attitude from the old cat beast. The cat's eyes sharpened and focused solely on Camlo. One ear was cocked forward towards Camlo, the other was trained on Tarun himself.

The old cat was also closer to the cubs than he'd been all day. Being closer to the cubs also meant he was closer to Camlo, which just didn't sit right with Tarun. The cat was acting like it was stalking Camlo like he was prey.

The mother cat beast's head jerked around the same time he'd noticed the change in the male cat's behavior. Her tail twitched around in irritation. Her back stiffened and her head and ears perked up. She stopped them walking, as she'd been in the lead, and slunk around toward where the cubs were.

She bared her teeth at the other cat beast. Tarun hung back, not wanting to get in between a fight, but close enough to jump in if Camlo needed protecting.

The other cat was now focused on the female. He bared his teeth as well. There was slight confusion in his eyes.

Now both cats were in fighting stances, backs stiffened, and heads up, ears swiveling back. Their tails lashed back and forth behind them.

The mother cat, he realized, was emitting a low growl. The male cat almost took a step back at the sound but seemed to realize that would mean backing down at the last minute and he stepped forward instead.

Which seemed to be the wrong thing to do.

The mother cat sprung forward, herding the male cat back and away from her cubs, and Camlo. The male cat growled in anger and bumped her right back.

They didn't fight all out yet, just circled each other to get a feel for their opponent. The mother cat's usual almost sweet face was terrifying with her lips pulled back in a snarl and her eyes squinted in protective rage. Her open mouth exposed more of her teeth than usual, the whiteness of them shining in the coming darkness.

Though the male was bigger than her he appeared scruffy. Tarun thought that the mother cat was probably his match or even stronger.

Evening

Camlo stood next to Roseath's cubs in shock as he watched the cats circling each other. The black wolf stood to the side as well, his body tense.

The cats' change in attitude had happened quickly, their fighting stances only occurring within seconds of the tense atmosphere appearing.

Suddenly the male cat pounced. Roseath swerved gracefully to the side and continued bearing her teeth. He tried to swipe a paw at her face only to be knocked back by her own paw.

Roseath lunged forward causing the older cat to back down and reevaluate the situation. But she didn't give him long to think. She bounded forward again, and he again lost his bearings. Camlo could see he was overwhelmed and unable to think of how to fight back. She continued doing this until she saw an opening. Then she jumped up and onto his back.

She grabbed him roughly by the throat with her sharp teeth. He roared in anger and frustration, not pain yet, and tried to buck her off. This only lodged her teeth in deeper into the loose skin around his neck. She shook her head back and forth in two harsh shakes. She growled at him.

Finally he gave up and lay limply. Roseath slowly got off of him, still growling. Camlo started wagging his tail in happiness at her win. He assumed this was when the old male cat would back off and leave them.

The male cat sluggishly got up and turned to the direction they'd been walking from, where the black wolf was also standing. Roseath lifted her black lip back from her teeth and snarled at him to leave.

He glanced at her then turned his head straight. He limped forward, the black wolf stepping out of his path. The cat stopped a few steps past the black wolf before he unexpectedly spun around and leapt at the wolf.

The black wolf barked in alarm and jumped away, but not before getting his side swiped with a big paw. Roseath also leapt forward and rushed at the attacking cat. He growled once more and seemed to glare at every cat and wolf present before he took off.