The sun had fully risen now, and everyone in the patrol was awake. Lightdrop was still trying to wrap his mind around what Twilightdawn had told him, and now he was starting to feel a bit betrayed. Oakblaze and may have never mentioned his and Spottedecho's history with Ravenstrike, but they had led Lightdrop to believe otherwise.
"So, when are we going to discuss what we are going to do next?" asked Orchidfeather, pulling Lightdrop away form his thoughts.
"Let's eat first." decided Bluestone, dipping his head down to nibble on the blades of grass near his hooves. The whole patrol followed the roan's example. Soon everyone had filled their bellies and was staring expectantly at Bluestone.
"What now?" asked Cliffstone.
"Now, we debate rather or not we're staying in Anok." answered Bluestone.
Orchidfeather shook her head, "I think the choice is obvious, Ravenstrike clearly doesn't want any pegasi here, and we will never be able to live here without constantly looking over our shoulders."
"Leaving Anok would be just dangerous." argued Twilightdawn, "There's no telling if we can even find a place to live."
"Yeah," said Orchidfeather, "Just without Ravenstrike."
"I say we stay," said Cliffstone, slamming his hoof down on the ground, "We need to at least try to save Stone Herd."
"Do you have a death wish?" accused Orchidfeather.
Cliffstone flattened his ears and glared the palomino mare, "I don't abandon my herd mates." he snapped.
"Look at them," said Orchidfeather, using her wing to point in the direction of the herd "They're gone."
No they're not, thought Lightdrop, they are just trapped. He wanted to correct Orchidfeather, but then he remember that he had promised Twilightdawn he wouldn't, so the buckskin yearling stayed silent.
"I won't believe it." said Cliffstone.
Orchidfeather rolled her eyes, "Stubborn horse." she muttered.
Copperstorm scuffed his hooves along the ground, "I agree with Orchidfeather," said the chestnut stallion, sheepishly. "Wile I don't want to leave my birthland, I think staying is a death sentence. And that's not a risk I'm willing to take."
Twilightdawn stared at Copperstorm, and Lightdrop sensed that she had not expected the stallion to side with Orchidfeather. "We can find a way to live here without taking risks." she said. "Anok is huge, and Ravenstrike can't be everywhere at once."
Copperstorm looked at Twilightdawn apologetically, "I'm sorry, but Ravenstrike will find out at some point, and I don't want to be around for that."
After this, the group stood in silence for a few moments, then Bluestone cleared his throat, "I guess it's time to vote, who says we should stay."
"Hold on." protested Orchidfeather, before anyone could move, "There are six of us here, it won't be a fair vote."
Cliffstone snorted, "Life isn't fair Orchidfeather."
Bluestone sighed, clearly irritated by Orchidfeather, "Fine, does anyone want to volunteer not to vote."
No one moved, then Lightdrop raised his wing, "I volunteer." he said. Lightdrop wanted to vote, but he was the youngest by far of any steed there, and the least experienced. To him, he was the obvious choice to be the one who wouldn't cast their vote, and anyways, Orchidfeather would probably just insist that he would be the one to sit out.
"Okay," agreed Bluestone, "Now let's vote. Who wants to stay?" Both Cliffstone and Twilightdawn raised their wings. Bluestone nodded, thoughtfully, "And who wants to leave?" Orchidfeather raised her wing, and was followed tentatively by Copperstorm. Bluestone dipped his head, "I vote we leave." he said.
Orchidfeather shot Twilightdawn and Cliffstone a triumphant look, "I believe we have made a very wise decision."
Cliffstone snorted, "We'll see about that." he said.
"Enough," ordered Bluestone, "I don't want any bickering." he paused, then added, "We will leave at once." With that, the powerful blue roan spread his wings and took to the skies.