— the path to moonstone had grown so familiar, she often felt as though she could walk it with her eyes closed. while she only felt excitement and pride for her apprentice when she announced their promotion back home, finchblossom couldn't help the apprehension she felt when the mothermouth came into view. after all, starclan had failed to come to them before. what would happen if they didn't come to oversee them now? would starclan approve of pipitpaw's graduation? were they so angry with the clans that they would deny the creation of an oracle? a worshipper?
"how are you feeling?" she asked softly, moving to brush her side against pipit's. "you've worked so hard. i'm sorry it took me so long." a warm smile formed on her lips but unease tugged it downwards. finch tried not to outwardly show her anxiety, but the girl was never very good at hiding her emotions. soft eyes flickered up to the sky. the overcast was not as heavy as it had been at the meeting, shy stars peaking out from between the clouds. was that a good sign? "oh, the moon is up. it's time to go."
she took her place by the moonstone. it glowed softly with warmth, and for the first time in moons, finchblossom felt herself comforted by the presence of starclan. "thank you," came her only prayer to starclan in their temporary truce. "are you ready?" she offered one final smile of encouragement before taking a deep breath, releasing it slowly. she motioned for pipitpaw to do the same. "i, finchblossom, medicine cat of riverclan call upon our ancestors to look upon my apprentice." her eyes fixed on the moonstone to make sure nothing had changed. then, with another deep breath, she closed her eyes, face lifted up to the roof of the cave.
"pipitpaw has trained hard, harder than anyone, to learn the ways of medicine. i know they will serve you and riverclan loyally for many moons, if you will take them under your guidance." eyes flickered open once again, her deep blues glowing with an unfamiliar intensity. "pipitpaw,do you promise to uphold the ways of a medicine cat, to stand apart from rivalry, and to protect all cats equally -- even at the cost of your life?" she would only pause for a second; there was no room for uncertainty here. "with all of starclan as my witness, i grant you your true name as medicine cat. pipitpaw, from this day forward, you will be known as pipitpetal. starclan honors your determination, kindness, and stability. may you always follow your heart."
the light from her eyes faded along with the bright glow of the moonstone. finchblossom moved to rest her muzzle on the top of pipitpetal's head, offering them a lick of congratulations. "i'm so proud of you, pip."