|"Yes. We have been expecting you for a long time. And now you have come. The others deserve to know. This is not just your destiny, and you cannot walk this path alone."|
|— Rock to Jaypaw in Outcast, page 314-315|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter twenty nine of Outcast. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 29 (of 29)
- Page Numbers: 311-317
- Jaypaw lies in the sleeping hollow where the scents of his littermates still linger, and he doesn’t try to sleep, but instead listens carefully for the first sounds of the returning warriors. He worries about if Hollypaw or Lionpaw died in the battle, and what it would mean to the prophecy, and the young cat wonders how he could bear to be without him. The waterfall’s thundering noise is noted to sound hollow and echoing with the cave almost empty; the two kit-mothers are with their litters in the nursery; the elders are in their sleeping places on the other side of the cave; and Wing Shadow Over Water, the injured prey-hunter, sleeps nearby. Every other cat has gone to fight, as there is no point in leaving guard to protect the cave when all the intruders would be fighting in the battle.
- Eventually, Jaypaw can’t stay still any longer, and he rises to his paws and pads across the cave, licking a few icy drops where they trickle into the pool of fresh water. He then slips down the passage that leads the Cave of Pointed Stones. All is silent inside, but Jaypaw feels a faint stir of wind and draws in a strong and fresh scent of the Tribe’s healer. He calls Stoneteller, and from the end of the cave, the old cat replies that he is there, though his voice sounds sad and defeated. He asks the apprentice what he wants, and Jaypaw asks if there is any word from the Tribe o Endless Hunting. The Healer says that there is none, and Jaypaw feels a pang in his belly at the knowledge that Stoneteller had lied to his Tribe about what the Tribe of Endless Hunting had said, and how he tried to manipulate his cats into choosing to flee. However, his plan had failed, as the Tribe had chosen to fight, and left the old cat with the knowledge that if they survived, it would be without their ancestors’ support. Jaypaw feels the Healer’s pain and can’t help feeling pity. The medicine cat meows an apology, and Stoneteller wonders if their ancestors lost faith in them. Jaypaw assures him that if must not be that, and he pictures the pool among the sheer crags where he had confronted the Tribe of Endless Hunting. The mottled tom had revisited the dream countless times in his waking mind, until he though he understood its meaning, but he isn’t sure what the knowledge would be to him.
- A rasping voice says Jaypaw’s name behind him, and the gray apprentice spins around. Every hair on his pelt rises at the sight of Rock, but he is confused, as he isn’t asleep. The ancient cat glimmers as if standing in moonlight, and seems to flat in shadow. Jaypaw starts to get excited and reaches out his senses to Stoneteller, but the old cat’s feelings have not changed, and he makes no sound. Rock mews that Stoneteler cannot hear and see him, and that only Jaypaw can. The ThunderClan tom’s voice shakes as he asks why he came, and Rock replies that the battle has been won, and they can all go home now. Jaypaw is delighted that Hollypaw and Lionpaw is safe, but is sure that Rock came to tell more than just the battle results he would discover in the morning anyways. The blind apprentice meows that the Tribe must have fought well, and wonders if the Tribe of Endless Hunting will have more faith in them now, but Rock sourly asks why they should, as the Clans saved the Tribe. Jaypaw demands what is wrong with that, and notes to himself that although he had always longed to speak with Rock back at the lake, he now gets more and more frustrated with the ancient cat at each encounter.
- Rock replies that StarClan did not sent him, and he wasn’t summoned by the Tribe of Endless Hunting. Jaypaw begins to object, but Rock silences him and sweeps his tail. He hisses that the Clans came and won, at least for the battle, but questions if he thinks the borders with hold, reminding Jaypaw that the Tribe doesn’t have experience of defending their territory, and the trespassers have honor at keeping their word. Jaypaw is dismayed and asks if they came for nothing, but Rock disagrees that he has learned a lot, and the Tribe will eat well, at least for a while. The ancient cat’s eyes seem to gaze into the shadows at something hidden from Jaypaw.
- Jaypaw takes a deep breath, and guesses that the Tribe cats came from the lake. He is satisfied to see Rock’s start of surprise, and the ancient cat confirms his theory, asking how he knew. Jaypaw explains that it was in the pool in the mountains that the Tribe spirit showed him, and that they found another Moonpool, just like the one near the lake. There is pain in Rock’s voice as he says that the Tribe turned their back on so many of their old ways, but says that they still sought for peace beside the water. Jaypaw guesses that the prophecy came from when the Tribe and Rock had all lived together, and Rock says yes, and tells Jaypaw that they have been expecting him for a long time, and now he has come. Jaypaw is both scared and delighted as he returns the old cat’s blind stare, and Rock continues that the others deserve to know, as it is not just his destiny.
- From the mian cave, Hollypaw’s voice calls for Jaypaw to come quickly, and, with Rock suddenly gone, Jaypaw is left alone in the Cave of Pointed Stones, except for Stoneteller’s silent presence. The young tom finds the entrance to the passage and races out to meet his sister, who bounds up to meet him and gives his ear a hurried lick, informing him that Linpaw is covered in blood. She goes on that their brother claims to not be hurt, but that Jaypaw must help him, and Hollypaw leads her across the cave to the waterfall to where he is. Clan and Tribe cats pour past them, yowling the good news to the cats who stayed behind, and Crag is heard meowing that he will go and tell Stoneteller. Hollypaw dashes along the path beneath the tumbling water, and Jaypaw follows quickly, his pelt pressed against the rock.
- After believing that his littermates had come back safe, Jaypaw is worried that Lionpaw will still die, and ath reaching the pool, he noses at his brother’s fur. He is shocked that it is thickly clotted with drying blood, and tries to hide his fear as he says they must get it off of him. Hollypaw suggests bringing the golden apprentice closer to the waterfall so that the spray helps in cleaning off the blood, and the three cats move around the edge of the pool until Jaypaw feels its spray soaking into his fur. Lionpaw protests at their fussing, claiming that he is fine, but Jaypaw snaps that Lionpaw is only fine at his say-so. Lionpaw sounds puzzled as he says that no cat could touch him, and he isn’t hurt, but Hollypaw tells him to be quiet and let her lick.
- As Jaypaw and Hollypaw clean the blood from their littermate’s fur, the medicine cat apprentice realizes Lionpaw isn’t hurt except for a bitten ear and sore pads. Jaypaw tries to hide that his paws are shaking with relief, and he mews to his brother that he doesn’t need herbs but should just keep the ear clean, and that he himself will check on it every day until it heals. Hollypaw’s voice is unsteady as she exclaims that he really is okay, and she explains that Jaypaw that Lionpaw fought very fiercely. The male apprentice begins to sound like his old self as he says that they won the battle.
- Hollypaw fretfully says that she doesn’t trust the trespassers, and expresses her doubt on if the Tribe will defend its new borders, and Jaypaw’s belly lurches to hear his sister echo Rock’s warning. She continues that she is unsure why them came if they weren’t going to succeed, nd wonders if the Tribe of Endless Hunting got it wrong. Jaypaw reaches out with his tail to touch her shoulder, and he mews that the Tribe’s ancestors didn’t want them, and that StarClan didn’t send them. He says that they came to win the battle and needed answers that their questions. Neither of his siblings reply, and Jaypaw adds that they all wanted to come to the mountains, which is why things happened so that they came. He goes on that it is about the three of them, and that StarClan, the Tribe of Endless Hunting, and Rock have been waiting for them. Hollypaw is confused about who Rock is, and Lionpaw asks his brother if he is crazy, but Jaypaw crouches on the edge of the pool and motions his brother and sister to draw closer. He murmurs to his siblings that there is something he must tell them.
References and citations
|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 • Chapter 25 • Chapter 26 • Chapter 27 • Chapter 28 • Chapter 29|