|"This has nothing to do with Brokenstar. Lionblaze should have never been born. [Hollyleaf is] dead, now it's your turn, Lionblaze."|
|— Breezepelt in The Last Hope page 308|
|The Last Hope|
|Chapter Number:||26 (of 27)|
|Point of View:||Dovewing|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter twenty six of The Last Hope. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 26 (of 27)
- Page Numbers: 297-320
- The Dark Forest warriors have gone, and the paw steps alert Dovewing that another patrol is coming. Blocking out the noise, she focuses on the camp. Leafpool's meow is shaky, saying they went for the kits. Shredded brambles line the entrance to the nursery, where Ferncloud is pacing. Poppyfrost replies that they saw the evil cats off. Mousefur agrees from where she is standing besides Purdy; however, Dovewing hopes that they will be able to do so again. Through the torn walls she can see Brightheart with her kits close, calming them with the stroking of her tongue. The queen has her tail wrapped around Lilykit and Seedkit.
- Brackenfur comments that they need to fix what they can, and calls RiverClan warriors Mintfur and Troutstream to help. Both cats hurry to drag brambles to the broken nursery wall. Dovewing wrinkles her nose at Leafpool's herbs, wondering what it is like to be a warrior one moment and a medicine cat the next. She knows that with the onslaught of Dark Forest cats that they'll need a medicine cat to help. The gray she-cat asks how Daisy is, and Leafpool replies that she has a scratch, but the queen will be fine.
- Suddenly Dovewing smells blood, and paws stagger into camp, the sound of fur dragging behind them. The warrior races across the clearing and bursts through a hole in the barrier. It is Ivypool, with Tigerheart at her side and Hollyleaf dangling between them. The ThunderClan she-cat yells for Jayfeather and Leafpool to come, before hurrying over to her sister's side. She asks if Ivypool is hurt, and checks the trio for wounds. Dark Forest scent is on Tigerheart, and Dovewing wonders if he is fighting for the Dark Forest. Both Firestar and Jayfeather run out the camp to where the four cats are. The leader asks the ShadowClan warrior if he can make it to camp, and the tabby tom says yes. With worry, Dovewing asks her sister what happened, and the white-and-silver she-cat says Hollyleaf saved her life. The gray she-cat is shocked, as her sister nearly died.
- At the hollow, Hollyleaf is on the ground, with Brambleclaw and Squirrelflight nearby. Light shines onto the black she-cat's fur, glistening where the blood is. At the edge of the clearing is Poppyfrost, and she asks if anyone's seen her kits. Ivypool shakes her head, saying no, they could be anywhere. Leafpool crouches beside her daughter and calls her name. The she-cat opens her eyes and moans, while her mother comforts her and begins to patch the wound. Realizing where Hollyleaf is bleeding, the brown tabby begins to press cobwebs to the she-cat's neck. Hollyleaf meows that it's okay, because she is glad she came back to ThunderClan and she couldn't leave without getting to know her mother.
- Ivypool screeches that the black she-cat must be saved, because her life was saved by Hollyleaf. Hawkfrost attempted to kill her and Hollyleaf got in the way. Brambleclaw looks up, his eyes darkening, and asks if Hawkfrost truly did this. The silver-and-white she-cat confirms this, and says she couldn't help, as she was fighting Snowtuft and Thistleclaw. Dovewing presses up against her sister, telling Ivypool she carried the warrior back here, and she couldn't have done more. The gray she-cat tells Firestar the Dark Forest cats are coming as she hears paw steps. The ginger tom stiffens from where he is besides his daughter. The tabby she-cat presses her muzzle against Hollyleaf's cheek, and calls her name. Hollyleaf does not stir but instead fall back, her eyes dull. Her mother turns to Jayfeather and frantically tells him she's not breathing. He replies that his sister lost to much blood; there is nothing they could've done to save her.
- Determined paw steps sound outside the hollow, and Firestar turns his gaze away from the dead she-cat. He tells the warriors in camp to prepare for attack. Brambleclaw signals for Squirrelflight and Sandstorm to guard the nursery, where Ferncloud is guiding Brightheart through the destroyed brambles. The WindClan and RiverClan that are there line up, while the elders, Mousefur and Purdy, prepare for the invasion. Leafpool drags her daughter's body over the side, leaning over Hollyleaf as if she could be brought back to life by the medicine cat's warmth. Birchfall and Blossomfall burst through the barrier, panting, and Dovewing wonders if they are leading the attack. Jayfeather runs over to the medicine cat den and tells Briarlight to get back. Firestar advances on Birchfall, snarling how could he do this to the Clans. The gray she-cat says she thought her father and Blossomfall were going to fight for the Clans.
- Ivypool shoots forward and informs the assembled cats that their father is going to fight for the Clans, as he fought with her at WindClan. Mousewhisker skids into camp, saying they came to warn them, and Blossomfall adds that the Dark Forest is coming. As she speaks, a gray-and-white tom bursts through the barrier, his eye swollen and pelt red with wounds. He is still muscled, and yowls that the trio are traitors, and the Dark Forest lost WindClan because of them. Then the tom snarls that he'll save killing them for last. Birchfall counters not if he gets to kill Thistleclaw first, as he tricked them all. Dark warriors begin to fill the camp. A tabby sends Bumblestripe flying with a powerful paw swipe; two toms hurl Tigerheart to the ground, and Squirrelflight disappears under a group of strong cats.
- Firestar yowls to guard the nursery, and as broad-shouldered warriors race past Sandstorm, Tigerheart frees himself and runs to help, while Daisy slashes at the row of snapping jaws. Ferncloud thrusts Brightheart and her kits aside, telling them to hide. The white-and-ginger queen refuses, saying she won't let the speckled gray cat fight alone. Outside the elders' den, Mousefur's voice hisses at Darkstripe, saying she hoped she'd never see him again. The brown she-cat lashes out at him, and he retaliates, swinging back. The dusky she-cat is sent reeling. Dovewing slams into the gray tabby, and he turns to face her, opening his mouth to reveal that it has bloody teeth.
- Cinderheart tells Dovewing to go for the warrior's ears, and that she'll go for his legs. The younger she-cat nods, and dives for the tom's ears. Darkstripe stumbles as Cinderheart swipes his legs from underneath him, and Dovewing slams his muzzle into the ground. The gray tabby compliments Dovewing as she claws at the tabby tom's spine. More warriors run towards the cats, and Purdy asks his denmate if she's ready. Together, the elders arch their backs and begin defending the Clan. A flash of ginger at the top of the hollow signals that Cherrypaw is safe. Firestar gestures with his tail, and she races off to find a patrol. Something slides into Dovewing, and she turns to see a tortoiseshell glaring down at her. The tortoiseshell asks why doesn't the she-cat give up, and Dovewing retorts that she'd rather die, hooking the opponent's lip and pulling. Squealing, the she-cat rakes the ThunderClan cat's muzzle.
- As Dovewing prepares to strike back, claws drag her away as a tabby pins her to the ground. Ivypool slams into the tom and sinks her teeth into the dark warrior's shoulder. Her sister writhes free as the silver-and-white warrior cries they're outnumbered. Cinderheart flings herself in between the sisters and tells them to hold their ground. Dovewing asks what they do as they are pressed against the medicine cats' den. Cinderheart tells them to fight, then leaps at a black-and-orange tom, growling that they killed her best friend, and they'll pay for this. Ivypool darts down and catches his paw in her teeth, and Dovewing lands on the enemy's back. She digs her claws in, and wraps her hind leg around the tom's, unbalancing him. The gray tabby calls out a warning but it is too late. A tabby sinks his teeth in the young warrior's paw, and pain races through the she-cat. She shakes him off and sees Breezepelt chasing after Crowfeather.
- Teeth close around one of her hind paws, and Dovewing shakes the cat off. She checks on her sister, and sees that Ivypool is on her hind paws, balancing with her tail as she drives two toms away. Cinderheart is busy battering a tortoiseshell's spine with her hind legs, so the gray she-cat is left searching for familiar pelts. Cloudtail is busy fighting outside the nursery; Squirrelfight shakes one opponent off while another dives beneath her belly. Icecloud is busy fighting by a beech tree, avoiding several snapping jaws.
- Suddenly Lionblaze bursts in, followed by Graystripe. Behind them are transparent cats that the she-cat has never seen before, and wonders if a new wave of Dark warriors chased the two ThunderClan toms. All around cats freeze, as Cinderheart asks who they are, and both Mousefur and Icecloud stop fighting. Lionblaze has to yowl that they're Ancient allies from before StarClan and that it's fine. A pale she-cat leaps at a tabby. The tom is surprised and is bowled over as his enemy attacks with a flurry of claws, an orange-and-white tom following. He knocks down a tattered Dark Forest tom. Something else bursts through: a badger that Blossomfall freaks out at, before Firestar announces that it is Midnight, a friendly badger that has helped the Clans in the past.
- Thistleclaw snarls in Dovewing's ear that a badger and fading elders won't save them, but Dovewing, fast as a mouse, swipes at his swollen eye. He spins away and Dovewing, dodging, trips over an unnamed Fallen Leaves, who is mourning over Hollyleaf's body. Another Ancient rushes to join him and tells him it is no time to grieve. He replies to his mother, saying it was never the black she-cat's time to die. Broken Shadow moves her son away, saying she died to help, and he should honor her memory by defeating these vile cats. Jayfeather appears, wailing for a cat named Half Moon, asking if she was here. The white she-cat comes out, calling him Jay's Wing, and touches his muzzle. The blind tom whispers that she came, and she replies that of course she would. Then Half Moon breaks away and tells her love she must fight. Jayfeather nods and tells her to send any wounded to him. The Ancient she-cat beckons for Dovewing to follow, and she does, but can barely make out anything in the darkness. She makes out Midnight fighting several Dark Forest cats, but they overpower her and drag her down.
- Fighting back panic, she falls in beside Lionblaze, telling the golden warrior they're outnumbered. He replies that they need to fight harder then. Suddenly the gray she-cat meows a warning, and Lionblaze is thrown off balance by a blur of black. Ripping his claws along the ThunderClan tom's cheek, he comments that Lionblaze isn't as strong as they say he is. Ivypool appears, begging the WindClan cat not to do it, and asks if he really wants to destroy the Clans for Brokenstar's sake. He replies that it's no longer about Brokenstar, rather, it's about Lionblaze and his sibling's forbidden birth. Breezepelt triumphantly points to Hollyleaf's limp body and says she's dead and now it's her brother's turn, then bites into the golden warrior's neck. Lionblaze gasps that they're kin, but his half-brother retorts that they're not. A dark gray pelt barges past Dovewing, which she recognizes to be Crowfeather.
- He hauls his WindClan son back by the shoulders, and tells him not one hair on Lionblaze or Jayfeather's pelt will be hurt. Breezepelt snarls that he always knew his father hated him. Crowfeather replies that he didn't hate the black tom, but that what he wanted to believe, and Nightcloud helped it along. His son spats that it wasn't entirely her fault, and his father agrees. The dark gray tom hisses that he should've done something earlier, but now it's too late. Dragging Breezepelt to his paws, he snarls for the black tom to go away. Leafpool appears, saying she never wanted any of this to happen. Crowfeather growls that Breezepelt had it coming for a while now. The brown tabby comments that things could've been different if they stayed together. Her former mate says it was never meant to be, but he never regretted anything. Shouldering his way through the brambles that conceal his daughter's body, he reaches down and nuzzles Hollyleaf's limp form
- Dovewing is rustled by a pelt and bumps into Ivypool. She wonders if this indicates more Dark Forest warriors. However, she turns to see a big white tom, who Graystorm reveals to be Whitestorm. The gray runs over to his former Clanmate and nudges the white tom's shoulder. Whitestorm, however, shrugs the younger cat off, saying it is a battle and not a reunion. Rearing up, he sends a Dark Forest cat flying with a powerful swipe. A familiar voice sounds in Dovewing's ear, asking where Mousefur is. She gasps that it is Longtail, and he demands to see the dusky brown she-cat. The gray she-cat tells him Mousefur is defending her den, and he knocks away a Dark warrior to find the brown elder. The she-cat is swiping at a ragged tom's spine, hissing malevolently. Longtail leaps for the opponent and offers to help, slashing at the tom then sending him off. Mousefur mutters that his problem is that he's always late. The brown tabby retorts that he's hopefully not too late.
- A tom shoulders Longtail away and reaches for Mousefur. Surprised, the she-cat stumbles as the Dark Forest warrior sinks his jaws into her. Her former denmate lunges for the tom and bites his spine, sending the enemy to the ground. The brown tabby tries to wake up the dusky she-cat, but it is too late. Mousefur's head is twisted at a strange angle and her eyes are dull, indicating her death. Filled with rage, the tom launches himself into battle. Purdy walks over. When he sees Mousefur's limp body, he tells her that she did die a warrior's death after all. The elder tells Dovewing that she should go fight, and he'll watch over the dead elder. Dovewing walks away and bumps into Bumblestripe. He asks her if she's fine, and the she-cat reports that Mousefur is dead. The tabby invites her to fight with him, because they've trained together enough times.
- They run blindly into the tangle of fur and claws, but are soon stopped by a enemy tom. He snarls that they should've picked off the weakest, and reaches for Dovewing's throat, but Bumblestripe drags the Dark warrior onto his back, with the ThunderClan she-cat pummeling at his belly. They then drive the tom back. When the ThunderClan tom knocks their opponent sideways, the gray she-cat scoops the cat's paws from under him, causing him to fall. After being attacked mercilessly by the two Clan cats, the Dark tom runs off towards the thorn barrier past Molepaw and Cherrypaw. Dovewing announces that they're safe, and listens as the two siblings announce the approaching triumph of the Clans. The gray she-cat searches for the two apprentices' mother, and sees Poppyfrost fighting with her sister. Turning to see her kits, the tortoiseshell sends the warrior flying with a kick, then races over to greet her kits.
- Dovewing jumps after she sees orange fur flying past her, and sees Firestar stopping near a lithe brown tabby. The leader asks Runningwind if he's still fast on his paws, and the StarClan warrior responds yes. His former leader orders him to chase the fox-hearts back to the Dark Forest. Another warrior appears, and says he'll go with them, since it's been quite a while since he's chased this kind of prey. Bumblestripe hisses for Dovewing to join him, and Sandstorm runs after them, saying she's a precaution in case it's a trap.
- The light ginger she-cat suddenly screeches to a halt, and points out a sliver of moonlight as a good thing. However, a voice snarls not for the Clans, and Sandstorm inquires who this cat is. The tortoiseshell snarls that Sandstorm should know who the newcomer is, because ThunderClan destroyed her life. She jumps on top of the ginger cat and introduces herself as Mapleshade, and tells the Sandstorm she'll pay for every blessing she was given by StarClan, and every blessing that had been taken away from the Dark she-cat. Horrified, Dovewing tries to help, but a black tom stops her and slices her cheek. Through the pain, she can hear Mapleshade yowling that Sandstorm had everything the tortoiseshell wanted: a mate that loved her, kits she could watch grow up, and the respect of her Clanmates. Eyes shining with fury, the Dark she-cat reaches for the ThunderClan cat's throat.
- A star-flecked tortoiseshell shoves Mapleshade away. As Sandstorm recovers for a bit, the tortoiseshell flings Mapleshade to the ground. Turning, the evil she-cat asks why Spottedleaf was defending Sandstorm, as the latter stole Firestar from her. Spottedleaf retorts that there was nothing to steal, because Firestar made the light ginger she-cat happy. Mapleshade lunges at the StarClan cat, and as the she-cat is flailing, the Dark Forest cat rips open Spottedleaf's throat. Firestar screeches and throws himself on Mapleshade, sending her flying backwards. Sandstorm gets to her paws and hurls herself onto the matted she-cat, and fights with tooth and claw. The tortoiseshell is thrown off as ThunderClan leader slams into her side, and the light ginger she-cat rakes Mapleshade's belly. Yowling with pain, the Dark Forest warrior runs up the slope, Sandstorm streaking after her.
- While Sandstorm is away, her mate crouches beside Spottedleaf, his eyes full of grief. He begs the tortoiseshell not to leave her, because she promised she'd be waiting in StarClan. The StarClan cat shakes her head, and says that was never going to happen, and she cannot be with him. The ginger tom wails that she can't leave her. Another StarClan cat shimmers into view, one with matted gray fur. She tells Firestar to let Spottedleaf go. The leader pleads with Yellowfang to not let the tortoiseshell fade away. However, Yellowfang tells the dark ginger tom that this is Spottedleaf's destiny, and she should follow it. Spottedleaf is about to say something, but she starts to fade away, and soon there's nothing but bloodstained grass. Firestar's head droops, and Dovewing walks away. She looks back to see Sandstorm press up against her mate.
- The gray she-cat skids into the clearing, and knows that most of the Dark Forest cats are gone, chased away by the Ancients, StarClan, and Midnight. Thistleclaw's patrol still remains, and they're fighting with fury. Sorreltail's patrol has returned from ShadowClan. Spiderleg is grappling with Thistleclaw, while Sorreltail pins Darkstripe to the ground. Thornclaw leaps from a beech and lands on a muscled tabby, and Midnight drives back terrified Dark Forest warriors into the brambles. A screech sounds inside the nursery, and Dovewing spots Daisy pinning a warrior to the ground as Brightheart sinks her teeth into the tom's throat. The gray she-cat doesn't see anyone guarding the nursery, until she locates Ferncloud slashing and spitting at a dark brown tabby. The flecked she-cat darts for the tom's throat, but he dodges and grabs her scruff instead. She looks up at the tabby in terror as he sinks his teeth into her neck.
- Firestar runs into the nursery and cries Ferncloud's name, but the tom snarls it's too late, revealing himself to be Brokenstar. The ThunderClan leader slams into the brown tabby, but stumbles and falls to the ground. Sandstorm wails that he can't fight anymore, because he only has one life left. Her mate growls that they all have one life left, and gets up to try again. Brokenstar gleefully snarls that he'll shred Firestar until there's nothing left to join StarClan. Yellowfang appears, and saying enough, she grabs her son's throat and snaps the bone. She drops Brokenstar as he fades to nothing. At once, Thistleclaw announces that Brokenstar is dead. Darkstripe looks up from where he is battling with Sorreltail, and questions this. The gray-and-white tom calls for a retreat, and runs away, with more cats pelting after him.
- Lilykit and Seedkit peer up from where they are hiding, and their mother invites them to come to her, as it is safe now. Troutstream and Pebblefoot limp over, while Whitestorm and Longtail stand in the clearing, panting. The brightest beam of moonlight illuminates Ferncloud's limp form. Amberkit asks why Ferncloud is asleep, and her brother says the queen is tired from all the fighting. Dustpelt arrives, asking if it is over, then sees his mate's body. Shocked, he races over to her and prods her, while Birchfall and Icecloud look on with horror. The brown tabby hisses for them to get Jayfeather, but Firestar walks over and says it's too late. Eyes alight with anger, Dustpelt turns his gaze on his daughter, and asks why wasn't she there when Ferncloud needed her.
- The ThunderClan leader murmurs that nobody could've saved her, not even Dustpelt himself. The tom insists that he could've saved his mate if he was there. The ginger tom tells Dustpelt that Ferncloud died saving the kits. A bleeding, staggering warrior stumbles into camp, and is recognized to be Hawkfrost. Firestar growls that the battle is over, but Brambleclaw snarls not for his brother. The Dark tom asks to go back to his Clan, however, Ivypool leaps at the dark brown tabby. Calling him a murderer, liar, and betrayer, she scratches at Hawkfrost's eyes until the latter flings her off and digs his paws into the she-cat's spine. He hisses that Ivypool's the betrayer, and he'll kill her. Before the tabby can deliver the killing blow, his brother drags him off the gray-and-white she-cat. Quickly the deputy sinks his teeth into Hawkfrost's neck, killing him instantly. As Brambleclaw looks up and Ivypool struggles to her feet, a new figure appears, and congratulates Brambleclaw.
- The deputy looks at his father in horror, and Tigerstar turns towards Firestar, who is already unsheathing his claws. The Dark Forest tom snarls that they will meet in battle, but not until each and every Clan cat is dead. Firestar insists the battle is over, but the brown tabby retorts that the Dark Forest is endless, and has more cats than they can imagine. The battle has just begun. Dovewing steps forward, and asks why the cats would fight, as Brokenstar and Hawkfrost are dead. Tigerstar's claws shine in the moonlight, and he explains the warriors have him.
- Snowkit (Unnamed)
- Unnamed tortoiseshell she-cat
- Unnamed orange-and-black tom
- Unnamed matted tom
- Unnamed pale she-cat
- Unnamed tabby tom
- Fallen Leaves
- Unnamed tattered tom
- Broken Shadow
- Half Moon
- Unnamed ragged tabby tom
- Unnamed tabby tom
- Unnamed tom
- Unnamed orange tom
- Unnamed tom
References and Citations
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 297
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 298
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 299
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 300
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 301
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 302
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 303
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 304
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 305
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 306
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 307
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 309
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 13.2 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 310
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 311
- ↑ 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 312
- ↑ 16.0 16.1 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 313
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 314
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 315
- ↑ 19.0 19.1 19.2 Revealed in The Last Hope, page 316
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 317
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 319
- ↑ Revealed in The Last Hope, page 308
|The Last Hope 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 • Chapter 25 • Chapter 26 • Chapter 27|