|"SkyClan was leaving the forest. We were at a Gathering, all of us. We.. we had asked to stay, but the other Clans refused.We couldn't stay here any longer."|
|— Fawnstep to Cloudstar about her dream in Cloudstar's Journey, page 272|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter nine of Cloudstar's Journey. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 9 (of 10)
- Page Numbers: 269-273
- Cloudstar announces to his Clan that they have lost the battle against ThunderClan to stop them trespassing on their territory. He is covered with wounds which all burn like fire, his paws numb from jumping onto hard ground. He murmurs that he is sorry, and his mate Birdflight trots up to him with horror in her eyes, exclaiming that he said they had to win this battle. He snaps at her, saying they needed to win but they didn't, and she flinches. He softens when he notices this, and apologises to her, telling her that she is right, as they need that piece of territory to keep them fed.
- Buzzardtail steps into the clearing, one eye swollen shut and blood drenching his pelt. Cloudstar orders for him to go straight to Fawnstep as more warriors return and the elders and queens huddle around them. Cloudstar notes that they speak so quietly that he can hear a thrush warbling, and thinks that it is foolish, as if it stays here it will be prey tomorrow. He thinks of sending someone to catch it, but then remembers that every capable cat is injured, from ripped ears to Mousefang's broken leg. Cloudstar also wonders if StarClan had witnessed their humiliating defeat, as it certainly didn't feel as if SkyClan's ancestors were on their side.
- Birdflight interrupts his thoughts and tells him to get the cut on his flank seen to, but he replies that he must speak to the Clan and tell them they will not give up after one defeat. He claws himself up to the branch on the thorn tree, his hind leg exploding in pain as he pushes himself up, having to balance on twigs and haul himself up with his front legs instead. He can only guess where SkyClan's territory ends now, as he can see Twoleg nests looming beyond the thin screen of branches.
- As a cat from below him coughs he brings his attention back to them, noting that all of the eyes of that cats that had fought look empty, the only hope to be found being in the eyes of the cats left behind. Cloudstar raises his voice in attempt to sound like a leader for his cats to have faith in, and calls that the only reason ThunderClan won was because they wanted victory more than they did. The cats below look surprised while some nod and twitch their tails as if guilty for letting their Clan down. This makes Cloudstar feel a stab of guilt, as his cats had given everything they could but are outnumbered, hungry, and exhausted. The SkyClan leader goes on, saying his does not blame any of the cats, asking that they look at what they did today and see if they could do anything more. He says that if the answer is yes, they will continue to battle, as they are chances to prove what it means to be a SkyClan warrior. The cats below stir and lift their heads as if they are already co tempting future clashes with the other Clans, and Cloudstar winces at their defiance. In his thoughts, he once again apologises, and he can't bear the thought of making them fight again, but they must. He finishes his speech by saying that SkyClan will take back what is rightfully theirs, seizing their territory back from the ThunderClan thieves.
- There are some thin cheers as Cloudstar sighs, thinking of his cats bravery and loyalty, and he couldn't ask for better warriors. However, he can't help but feel like they could ask for a better leader. He carefully jumps down from the thorn tree and limps towards the medicine cat's den, as he needs cobwebs and something to ease the bruises that is not poppy seed. This is because he needs to stay awake to think of a better way to attack ThunderClan, and come up with a strategy that will give them a better chance of winning.
- Later, Fawnstep thrusts her wet muzzle into Cloudstar's ear to wake him up. As he wakes up, he can see the sky turning milky with dawn, but still dark to show off the stars. He asks StarClan if they are still watching, and if they have any words of wisdom. Fawnstep snaps him out of his thoughts, telling him she needs to talk to him. Cloudstar demands to know what she wants, at first thing that Birdflight may be having her kits, asking if she needs him to fetch herbs. Fawnpelt hisses for him to sit down, or he'll wake the whole Clan, telling him that Birdflight is fine, and that it will be a quarter moon before she is ready to have her kits.
- She shuffles further into his den and sits down, beginning to tell of a dream she had, her voice high-pitched, while Cloudstar picks up the scent of fear from her pelt. She goes on, saying she thinks it is StarClan telling her the near future, as Birdflight had her kits, but they were small. Cloudstar interrupts, asking if they were strong and healthy, and Fawnstep tells him they looked healthy. She tells him that in the dream SkyClan was leaving the forest after being denied help by the other Clans at a Gathering. Cloudstar's tail lashes as he exclaims that that is absurd, as the Clans have no right to decide whether they stay or not as this is their territory. Fawnstep gazes at him with fear in her eyes, and tells him that there was no territory left, as the Twolegs had taken all of it and they had nowhere to go. Cloudstar stares at her with dismay, wondering if this would truly be the end of SkyClan. Fawnstep rests her tail on his shoulder and apologises, telling him they should not have lost that battle, as it was a loss they cannot survive.
References and Citations
|Cloudstar's Journey chapters|
|Chapter 1 • Chapter 2 • Chapter 3 • Chapter 4 • Chapter 5 • Chapter 6 • Chapter 7 • Chapter 8 • Chapter 9 • Chapter 10|