|"Lionblaze watched her go, his heart sinking. He was only just beginning to understand Jayfeather's abilities; now he was faced with another cat whose powers were beyond anything he could imagine."|
|— Lionblaze after his argument with Dovepaw in Fading Echoes, page 50|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter four of Fading Echoes. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 4 (of 24)
- Page Numbers: 43-54
- Lionblaze, Cinderheart, Dovepaw, and Ivypaw are practicing climbing trees. Lionblaze calls out to Dovepaw that she's climbing the tree all wrong. It's a rainy day, making it hard for the apprentices to train. Sitting next to Ivypaw, Cinderheart wonders if it's a good day for tree-fighting. The golden tom replies that it's the best weather, for the apprentices will find it even easier when it's dry. Firestar had implemented tree-fighting sessions in order to utilize ThunderClan's skill in tree climbing.
- Lionblaze instructs the apprentices to climb up again and imagine he's a whole ShadowClan patrol. He's tired and hungry and doesn't understand what training has to do with the prophecy, but Jayfeather had told him to wait. To Lionblaze's worry, Cinderheart offers to instruct them on how to climb. She rolls her eyes, saying they'll be careful, and helps her apprentice, then Lionblaze's, up the tree. Lionblaze compliments Dovepaw on her speed. Cinderheart climbs after them, and explains how to best drop down on an enemy, landing squarely on their shoulders. The apprentices realize it'd be difficult to surprise the waiting tom, as Lionblaze had been staring right at them, and climb onto farther branches. Lionblaze offers to wander around.
- Cinderheart warns Ivypaw and Dovepaw to concentrate where their paws go and to grip the branch with their claws. Ivypaw falls from the tree, landing on top of Lionblaze. Ivypaw jumps up, shocked, and apologizes. Lionblaze jokingly remarks that he's the one who's supposed to get surprised, not her. Embarrassed, the she-cat scrambles up the tree.
- Cinderheart tells Dovepaw to be careful, as the branch won't hold her weight. Lionblaze looks up; he sees the apprentice on a broken, narrow branch. She slides off the branch, tumbling into others as she falls, unable to grip them with her claws. To Lionblaze's relief, the branches break her fall, and she ungracefully plops onto the ground. The golden cat shakes his head, remarking that he didn't expect it to be raining cats when Jayfeather had told him that it'd rain. Dovepaw brightens and climbs back into the tree; while waiting for the surprise attack, Lionblaze tracks down a squirrel. After he kills it, he hears rustling above, and Dovepaw and Ivypaw drop down onto his shoulders. The warrior compliments the pair on their strategy of deafening the enemy, and Cinderheart appears, looking pleased, and compliments his catch. The apprentices ask to try again, and Ivypaw races toward a tree. Dovepaw, on the contrary, has paused with her ears pricked; Lionblaze realizes that she's heard something, noticing anxiety darkening her eyes. He dismisses Cinderheart to train Ivypaw, saying he wants to show his apprentice a hunting technique. The silver-and-white she-cat wants to try it, but the golden tom tells her that he'll show her another time.
- Lionblaze pads over to Dovepaw and asks what she heard, to which she reveals that she heard dogs in WindClan. He reassures her that they chase sheep on their territory all the time. Dovepaw clarifies that the dogs aren't chasing sheep, but cats, and that they have to help the patrol getting chased. Lionblaze says they'll be fine. The she-cat tells him that Sedgewhisker is on the patrol, currently being bitten by one of the dogs. She then says that the rest of the patrol are helping her and fighting off the dogs. The golden tom is relieved, telling the apprentice that Sedgewhisker will be safe. Dovepaw hisses, asking him how he knows, and the warrior realizes she's clinging onto the friendships she made during the journey. He reminds her that they're home, and they can't be close to other Clans because the warrior code says so. She asks how he could be so cold, to which Lionblaze replies that he isn't, and things have changed. Dovepaw snaps that she hasn't changed, asking what's the use of hearing faraway things if she can't do anything.
- Lionblaze suggests to try to limit her senses to ThunderClan's territory, and Dovepaw looks at him as if he has grown another head. She asks if the prophecy is bigger than the warrior code, to which the golden tom nods warily. The she-cat concludes that her powers aren't just for ThunderClan's benefit. Lionblaze reminds her that they should stay loyal to their own Clan; Dovepaw, glaring, questions whether she's loyal to the code or to the prophecy. Not waiting for the tom to answer, she pelts towards a tree and climbs the trunk after Cinderheart and Ivypaw.
- Lionblaze watches her go with a sinking heart. He reflects that he's only just started to understand Jayfeather's powers and now is tasked with trying to understand Dovepaw's. He strains his ears to listen for the others but he can only hear the rain pattering on the leaves. He hears Ivypaw complaining about the branch she's on bobbing too much in the wind. Cinderheart advises her to hang on tight but Ivypaw retorts that it's making her feel sick.
- Lionblaze thinks about how his own power of being able to fight unharmed in battle is much simpler. He questions if it seems frightening to his Clanmates and recalls how Hollyleaf had always felt uncomfortable with his readiness to fight and worried he might still be hurt. He reminds himself that Hollyleaf was not one of the three and didn't have a power, but also thinks back to his last encounter with Tigerstar when he had been injured. Lionblaze glances around, fur lifting as he wonders if the dark warrior is watching him. Ferns swish nearby and he turns around, unsheathing his claws.
- It turns out to be Sorreltail. Lionblaze is relieved and asks her if she is looking for Cinderheart. Sorreltail shakes her head and replies that she's joining Graystripe's hunting patrol. Jayfeather had told her that her shoulder was healed after she wrenched it a few days earlier when catching her paw in a rabbit hole. Sorreltail then asks if Cinderheart is with Lionblaze. She follows his gaze up into the trees to watch her daughter helping Ivypaw. Sorreltail is full of pride and says she never thought she'd see Cinderheart strong enough to climb like a squirrel. She praises Leafpool for having been a wonderful medicine cat with an edge to her mew. Lionblaze wonders if Sorreltail blames him for Leafpool resigning as the medicine cat. He tells himself that it wasn't his fault that she had thrown everything away by breaking the warrior code.
- As Sorreltail heads away he remembers Sedgewhisker and calls out to Sorreltail, asking where she is hunting. Sorreltail replies that she's hunting by the WindClan border. Lionblaze thinks that if the WindClan patrol truly are in trouble then the hunting patrol would notice and be able to help. Lionblaze buries his catch and heads to the oak where he asks how the others are doing. Cinderheart replies they are doing well and lands beside him with the two apprentices soon following. She states she thinks they are ready to begin trying to jump from tree to tree. Lionblaze's tail droops, he is not a natural climber. He tries to suggest teaching battle moves instead but Cinderheart firmly responds Firestar wants them to practice tree hopping. Lionblaze thinks that they're cats, not birds and thinks he'd rather be on the ground fighting than hiding in the trees.
- Cinderheart suggests starting in a maple tree, then goes on to say that Longtail claims in the old territories he went from the Great Sycamore to the camp without touching the forest floor. Dovepaw asks how far that was and Cinderheart replies that it was around the same as where they are to the hollow. Lionblaze snorts, wondering how Cinderheart would know since she was born by the lake. Ivypool boasts she could manage that and swarms up the maple trunk with Cinderheart and Dovepaw following. Lionblaze looks up and wishes the rain would stop as it would be hard enough without slippery bark. He follows them up, Cinderheart waiting on the lowest branch and the apprentices halfway to the edge. Dovepaw states they won't have to jump as the branches are weaving together with a neighboring willow tree. Lionblaze suggests a different route, worrying that the willow won't take their weight. Dovepaw retorts sharply that he's only worried about his weight, still angry with him about Sedgewhisker. Cinderheart notes the tree is old and should be strong enough, Dovepaw and Ivypaw having already crossed.
- Lionblaze admits she's right and crosses easily, the branches sturdy. He tells the apprentices to slow down as they rush ahead Dovepaw balances at the top of the longest branch, trying to reach the ancient oak beyond. Lionblaze warns her that the bark is rough and there could be unseen cracks and that she should wait until he's checked it. He runs ahead but is too late as Dovepaw is already leaping over to the oak. As she lands the branch cracks and she plummets onto the floor. Lionblaze, knowing what is happening leaps from the willow and grabs Dovepaw by the scruff, hauling her back just in time as the branch crashes to the floor, narrowly missing them. Angry he tells her that however much she thinks she knows sometimes he's right. Dovepaw just sniffs and stalks away.
References and citations
|Fading Echoes chapters|
|Prologue • Chapter 1 • Chapter 2 • Chapter 3 • Chapter 4 • Chapter 5 • Chapter 6 • Chapter 7 • Chapter 8 • Chapter 9 • Chapter 10 • Chapter 11 • Chapter 12 • Chapter 13 • Chapter 14 • Chapter 15 • Chapter 16 • Chapter 17 • Chapter 18 • Chapter 19 • Chapter 20 • Chapter 21 • Chapter 22 • Chapter 23 • Chapter 24|