|"Good-bye, Violetpaw. Twigpaw slowed, her lungs burning. Was that the last she'd see of her sister? Now that ShadowClan had turned rogue, could they ever meet again? She stumbled as her paws grew numb beneath her. Grief choked her. She and Violetpaw had chosen different Clans. Maybe their bond of kinship wasn't strong enough to survive their decision."|
|— Twigpaw's thoughts in Thunder and Shadow, pages 366-367|
Special thanks to Kate Cary
- It's been nearly a moon since Alderpaw returned from his quest, unsuccessful but not empty-pawed. The two kits he found, Twigkit and Violetkit, have been taken in by two Clans: ThunderClan and ShadowClan. There is little hope for a reunion, as tension between the Clans begins to rise in the face of a new threat. The same vicious group of rogues that drove out SkyClan has traced Alderpaw's path back to the territories around the lake—and ShadowClan may be the next to fall.
- Full of epic adventure and thrilling intrigue, this fifth Warriors series is the perfect introduction for readers new to the Warriors world—while for dedicated fans, it's a long-awaited return to the era of Bramblestar's ThunderClan, after the events of Omen of the Stars.
Detailed Plot Summary
- Echosong is in a sunlit forest, and she swishes her tail happily as the wind rustles the leaves. Birds chatter overhead as the medicine cat licks her lips hungrily and thinks that she'll hunt before the sun sets. The she-cat pauses, realizing that the sun already went down and that it had been raining when she went to sleep. She concludes that it feels too real to be just a dream, so she thinks this might be a vision sent by StarClan. Echosong senses movement nearby but convinces herself that she's safe here. Fur brushes in the undergrowth and a broad-shouldered tom appears, stars glittering in his pelt. He blinks slowly at Echosong as though they are old friends, and the medicine cat has a feeling that she knows him already from a vision. When she questions who he is, the tom gives her a prophecy -- "Embrace what you find in the shadows, for only that can clear the sky." Echosong is irritated and asks questions about its meaning but the StarClan cat doesn't respond. She remembers that this tom has already given her another prophecy before -- "What remains when the fire has burned out?" The tom gazes up to an oak canopy, where some leaves are dropping to the ground. When they arrive at the forest floor Echosong sees that the leaves don't look similar to oak leaves, rather like maple leaves with five points each. The gray tom says that now they are scattered like leaves, blown by the wind. He tells her to look at one leaf, bigger than the others, but when she leans forward they start to fade away. The vision vanishes and Echosong wakes up in her makeshift nest, realizing that it's nighttime and raining outside. She questions, bewildered, how the leaves could show her a way back home, and what StarClan was trying to tell her.
- Alderpaw is deep in thought about his quest, which happened less than a moon ago. Jayfeather snaps at him to return to his medicine cat duties, and the apprentice mumbles that he's sorry. Meanwhile, Leafpool sorts out some herbs and thinks about which ones they need to fetch before leaf-bare. Jayfeather says that they need more catmint, so they don't lose any more Clanmates to greencough, like Spiderleg seasons before. Briarlight offers help with sorting but Jayfeather says there are enough cats in the den already. The blind tom aims this statement at Twigkit, who is playing with a leaf in the entrance. Alderpaw brought her with him since Lilyheart's older kits only played rougher games, so she would have been all alone. The apprentice suggests that she could play with Briarlight as an exercise for her. Leafpool agrees but Jayfeather complains about getting Twigkit between his legs three or four times a day. As the kit hurries over to Briarlight, the tom tells Alderpaw to get on with his task of sorting yarrow and coltsfoot.
- Graystripe comes in and tells the three medicine cats to go to Bramblestar's den. The elder then asks for some comfrey for Millie's joints. Leafpool offers to come over to check on her, but Graystripe says they shouldn't let Bramblestar wait, since Rowanstar is with him. Jayfeather asks why he didn't tell them before, but the gray tom answers with amusement that he just did. Alderpaw walks out into the clearing and sees Lilyheart's kits poking around in the apprentices' den, and also notes that Brightheart's patrol must've not had time to hunt when they found Rowanstar. In Bramblestar's den, the ShadowClan leader tells them Littlecloud is dying, and Leafpool asks if he is suffering. Rowanstar tells her Dawnpelt has given him poppy seeds for the pain, but doesn't know what else to do. Alderpaw offers that he could help, but Rowanstar quickly cuts the apprentice off and meows that he needs a full medicine cat to give proper care. The ShadowClan leader also mentions that Grassheart, one of their queens, is expecting her first litter and may need help. Leafpool offers to go and tells Alderpaw to help her carry the herbs to their camp. As the brown tabby she-cat and Jayfeather head off to fetch the supplies, Bramblestar holds the young tom back from following. The ThunderClan leader then tells Rowanstar to leave since his Clan needs him at this time.
- The leader goes out of the den and walks out of camp with his chin high. Bramblestar then faces Alderpaw, and the apprentice looks at his father expectantly. The dark tabby meows softly that he's sending a patrol to look for SkyClan, consisting of Cinderheart, Lionblaze, and Squirrelflight. Alderpaw is surprised that he'd told them about the missing Clan, but Bramblestar assures him that the majority of the Clan won't know. The apprentice asks if he can go, but he is declined as he is needed to help Jayfeather. The leader sends him off, commenting that someone is waiting for him. Alderpaw turns, expecting to see his mentor, but instead spots Twigkit at the edge of the clearing, and heads over to her. The kit begs to come to ShadowClan with him to see Violetkit, but the apprentice regretfully says no. Twigkit rushes off and returns with a red feather, and asks if Alderpaw will bring it to her sister. The dark ginger tom feels pity prick his heart, and promises to do what the kit requests.
- Alderpaw and his mentor travel to ShadowClan's camp, and Tawnypelt's patrol helps them carry their supplies as they near the entrance. As soon as they enter, Leafpool immediately sets to work, asking Dawnpelt how Littlecloud is, and she has the she-cat lead her to the medicine den. Once seeing his condition, the brown tabby orders the cream she-cat to get the elderly tom to swallow some pulp. Rowanstar and Crowfrost request to talk to Leafpool, so she tells him to make it quick, as she needs to check on Grassheart. The leader solemnly meows that they have something important to ask her, and then proceeds to inquire if she would be willing to stay and train Puddlekit to be ShadowClan's next medicine cat. Leafpool is skeptical about training a random kit with no proven StarClan connection to be in charge of a Clan's herb store but concedes that they don't really have a choice. She agrees to stay for a few moons and help but warns that it may not be enough.
- Leafpool then orders Alderpaw and Needlepaw to go fetch water-soaked moss for Littlecloud, as he will be thirsty. The brown tabby then is lead to the nursery by Dawnpelt to check on Grassheart. The ShadowClan apprentice suggests that they could simply carry the elderly medicine cat to a ditch to drink, but Tawnypelt silences her and meows that she shouldn't be so insolent. The pair leaves, and as they talk, Alderpaw is concerned about her lack of involvement with Violetkit on any level. Needlepaw and the ginger tom soon gather enough moss, and dunk it in a nearby pool. The two cats then bring it to the medicine den, where Littlecloud laps at it thirstily.
- Needlepaw asks Alderpaw if he wants to see Violetkit, and he accepts with enthusiasm. They cross the clearing to the nursery, and Grassheart and Pinenose stare at the apprentices when they enter. The silver ShadowClan she-cat assures the queens that Alderpaw is just a visiting ThunderClan cat, and then he spots Violetkit playing with a tendril sticking out of the wall. The ginger tom calls to the kit and says that he's brought her a present from her sister. Violetkit is confused, but Alderpaw then shows her the feather Twigkit had given to her. The black-and-white she-cat's eyes light up, and announces that she loves it. Violetkit asks many questions about her sister, and Alderpaw does his best to answer all of them. Pinenose then tells the she-kit that it's time for her nap, so she slowly pads over the nest of the queen. The medicine cat apprentice meows that he'll tell Twigkit about her, and then slips out of the den to see Needlepaw. They go to collect bedding for Littlecloud, and Alderpaw suggests quietly that they should let Violetkit and her sister meet in secret. Needlepaw agrees, commenting that everyone loves secrets.
- Violetkit is in the nursery, thinking about what Ratscar had said about her status as ShadowClan cat. The black-and-white kit is saddened that Kinkfur was the only elder that thought she was really a part of the Clan. She notices that it is late, and the only cats still awake are the ones sitting vigil for Littlecloud. The medicine cat had died earlier that day, and Violetkit feels guilty that she doesn't feel sad. She asks Pinenose about her worries, but the queen ignores her and tells the kit to go to sleep. A little while later, she hears her foster mother calling for Puddlekit to find Leafpool, as Grassheart is kitting. The medicine cat soon returns and asks for wet moss for the queen, also sending Violetkit out and over to apprentices' den for the night.
- The black-and-white she-kit comes across Needlepaw, who takes her out of camp and tells her they are going on an adventure. Violetkit is confused but follows the apprentice out into the forest, stopping behind some brush when instructed. She sees Alderpaw and Twigkit, and she and her sister play for a little bit until they are taken back to their respective camps. Back at ShadowClan's camp, Violetkit complains that she feels lonely, and Needlepaw sympathizes with her. The apprentice tells her that from now on, she’s is going to look out for her, and everything will be fine. Violetkit sees the sincerity in Needlepaw’s eyes and wonders if she finally has a friend.
- About a half-moon after Twigkit and Violetkit’s meeting, Alderpaw is in the medicine den, sorting herbs. He is surprised when Dewnose comes in and tells him to report to Highledge, because Squirrelflight, Lionblaze, and Cinderheart had returned. He excitedly bounds his way out of the den, and once in earshot, asks if they found anything. Bramblestar gravely reports that they found that the gorge was empty. Alderpaw is bewildered, so Lionblaze and Cinderheart confirm that there were no fresh scents or nests. The medicine cat apprentice questions if they should send out another patrol, because if the rogues were gone, then SkyClan might come back. Squirrelflight meows that it’d be no use, as the patrol checked the whole area to no avail. Bramblestar wonders where the rogues might have gone, but their conversation soon peaks the curiosity of several cats in the clearing. They lower their voices, and the dark tabby tells his son that SkyClan is lost to them. Cinderheart comments that the prophecy could still be true, as they have Violetkit and Twigkit. Alderpaw wishes he could believe her, but is skeptical that StarClan would abandon a Clan. The medicine cat apprentice feels a surge of frustration as he excuses himself and goes back to his duties.
- When Alderpaw gets back to the medicine cat den, he is instructed by Jayfeather to check Honeykit for fever. The apprentice says that she doesn’t have one, so his mentor concludes that it isn’t serious. Jayfeather tells Alderpaw to get some chervil for the kit, commenting that he'd better hurry up. The mentor states that he's been distracted ever since Squirrelflight returned, and the apprentice is surprised that the blind tom noticed his behavior. The ginger tom rips up some chervil leaves, but Jayfeather takes them from him, reprimanding that only the roots of the plant are used. Honeykit asks what they will taste like, but the medicine cat snaps that it doesn't matter how they taste because the medicine will make the bellyache go away. The kit obeys, peeking at Jayfeather as if scared of what he might stay if she stopped. Alderpaw reassures Honeykit that she'll feel better in no time.
- Fernsong leaves to go on patrol with Ivypool, just as Twigkit comes into the den, carrying a mouse for Briarlight. The lame she-cat comments that she didn't have to do this, but the kit insists that she wanted to because it was fresh. Fernsong asks Honeykit if she feels better, and the yellow-splotched she-cat meows that she thinks so, prompting the tom to then leave the den. Twigkit tells her that her siblings are waiting for her to go explore, and then inquires if she can come with them. Honeykit tells her no, and Briarlight steps in and leads the gray she-kit to the fresh-kill pile with her. As they leave, Alderpaw calls out after them to come back later and help if they want.
- The medicine cat apprentice then turns to his mentor, fuming, and meows that he needn't be so mean to Twigkit. Jayfeather rebukes the ginger tom, saying that just because StarClan gave him a prophecy doesn't mean he knows everything. Paws thunder into camp, and Molewhisker’s yowl splits the air. Jayfeather and Alderpaw race out of their den to see Cloudtail and Molewhisker standing in the center of the clearing as Bramblestar asks them what's wrong. The white warrior reports that WindClan cats are fighting rogues, and looks like they might need help. Bramblestar nods and picks a patrol to come with him, leading them immediately out of camp. Jayfeather and Alderpaw follow to treat the injured at the scene of the battle.
- They race through the forest, and soon hear the shrieks and yowls ring through the trees. Bramblestar comes over a rise, and the patrol soon sees that the WindClan cats are fighting for their lives. The ThunderClan tom orders his warriors to help them, and plunges into the battle. Bramblestar helps Oatclaw, while Cloudtail and Birchfall assist Furzepelt. The rogue leader, Darktail, orders his cats to stop fighting. Alderpaw recognizes the white tom in shock, and watches as his Clanmates back away from their foes. Jayfeather jerks his muzzle towards his apprentice, and asks if he knows these cats. Alderpaw replies that he'd seen some of them on his quest, and shrinks away as Darktail glares at him. Bramblestar tells Jayfeather to help the wounded, and his apprentice pads after him. The ThunderClan leader then orders Darktail to leave, and the rogue leader snarls that this won't be the last time they see them as his group bounds away. Oatclaw is badly wounded, and the medicine cats tend to him with what they have nearby. Furzepelt is heard groaning behind him, and when Alderpaw bound over, he announces that the warrior is dead. The medicine cat apprentice's eyes then shift to Jayfeather, who leans over Onestar. Alderpaw offers to get cobwebs, but his mentor tells him it is too late. The WindClan leader loses a life, to the every cat's shock.
- Bramblestar offers to take them back to ThunderClan's camp, and Onestar reluctantly agrees since his Clanmates are injured. Cloudtail and Rosepetal stay behind to sit with Furzepelt's body until a patrol can take it back to their camp. It is raining by the time they return, and the medicine cats set to work on the wounded. Jayfeather says that he hasn't seen cats that fought like that since the Dark Forest, and Alderpaw wonders silently if they're from there.The pair watch over the now sleeping WindClan warriors. Sparkpaw enters the den and announces that the hunting patrol is back with fresh prey, but Jayfeather says that he wants to make sure there's no infection before his patients eat. Alderpaw then leaves his sister with the blind tom and goes to talk to Bramblestar. The medicine cat apprentice sees his father in a meeting with Onestar and some others, but quietly tells the ThunderClan leader about having seen Darktail before. Bramblestar comments that he'd feared this would happen, and calls a Clan meeting.
- Before it starts, Onestar presses his way to the front of the crowd and says that he wants to take his Clanmates home. The WindClan leader is convinced to let Oatclaw and Emberfoot stay while their wounds heal, but he himself will leave. The ThunderClan leader sends a patrol with him to help carry Furzepelt’s body. Bramblestar tells everyone about the rogues in the forest, and assigns patrols to go warn each Clan. Twigkit meows that she wants to come, but is quickly silenced by several cats. Alderpaw ends up joining the patrol that goes to ShadowClan, to check on Violetkit and Leafpool.
- The patrol travels to the other Clan's camp, met by Tawnypelt leading a group of cats. As soon as they enter camp, Rowanstar asks if they’ve come to fetch their medicine cat. Bramblestar replies no, and proceeds to tell ShadowClan's leader about the rogues, and the WindClan cats that were hurt. Rowanstar considers this, and after Crowfrost notes that he supports it, he allows a ThunderClan patrol to follow a rogue scent trail with some of his cats. Once the trail cuts off, Alderpaw goes back to ShadowClan's camp to check on Violetkit and speak to Leafpool. The medicine cat apprentice is told by his mentor that she’ll be returning as soon as Puddlepaw learns enough to manage on his own. Alderpaw leaves her to go visit Violetkit, and runs into Needlepaw on his way out. The ShadowClan apprentice seems unusually restless, but the ThunderClan tom dismisses this and goes to the nursery with her trailing behind. Needlepaw calls to Violetkit, and as soon as she sees Alderpaw she excitedly asks if Twigkit is here. The ginger tom says no, and the kit looks disappointed. Alderpaw notices a new closeness and he observes Violetkit and Needlepaw's conversation, and is happy they are friends. Pinenose soon calls to the black-and-white kit to come inside, so she reluctantly obeys. Alderpaw then leaves ShadowClan's camp, wondering why Needlepaw had seemed distracted.
- Violetkit gazes across the den, watching Grassheart's kits sleep. She recalls sadly that she and Twigkit used to sleep like that, but was now stuck next to Pinenose. The black-and-white kit thinks the queen tries her best to be patient, but knows that her paws itched to be out with the warriors. Violetkit wishes she could be in the apprentices' den, knowing it would be impossible as she's only three moons old. The she-kit spots eyes shine through the nursery entrance, and comes outside to find Needlepaw waiting for her. The apprentice tells Violetkit they're going on another night adventure, with Sleekpaw this time. They leave camp, and the kit wonders if they're going in the right direction as they head further into the forest. Needlepaw catches a mouse, so she and Sleekpaw share it while Violetkit declines. A long-furred gray tom pushes his way through the bracken, along with a black she-cat and a silver tom. Needlepaw greets the rogues calmly, but Violetkit blurts out that they must be the ones who attacked WindClan. Darktail introduces himself and states that the Clan provoked them, and not the other way around. Violetkit says that Pinenose said they shouldn't be by the lake, but the rogue leader scoffs that that sounds greedy. Needlepaw and Sleekpaw support that claim, with Rain adding that they're going to grow fat from good hunting. The cats question why the kit is in ShadowClan, but Violetkit mews that she doesn't know. Needlepaw scorns Rowanstar, and the she-kit wonders if all of the Clan she's been living with view her as a rogue.
- Twigkit finishes off a vole, and then pads across the clearing to the medicine cat's den to help. On her way there, she overhears Rosepetal and Mousewhisker talking about the prophecy, and the kit watches as they conclude that she is just another ordinary kit with a belly to feed. Twigkit visits the medicine den, but soon leaves after Jayfeather gets annoyed with her presence. The gray kit decides to go fetch watermint from the lake to prove she is an asset to the Clan, so she sneaks out of camp. Twigkit runs through the forest, searching for the shoreline. In her efforts to collect the herb, the she-cat tumbles into the lake with a yowl. Twigkit imagines that she can hear her mother, urging her to swim to the surface. Sparkpaw ends up pulling the kit from the water, questioning if she'd wanted to see what it was like to be a RiverClan cat. As Twigkit meows that she came to fetch watermint, Cherryfall comes over a rise. The warrior takes the sodden she-kit back to camp, where Jayfeather treats her for shock. Alderpaw soothes Twigkit, commenting that she's special because StarClan led him and Needlepaw to her. Sparkpaw bursts in the den and announces that because she saved the gray kit, she gets to have her assessment and become a warrior.
- Alderpaw cheers Sparkpelt's new warrior name, and tries to push away his own envy. His sister comes over to him and comments it'll surely be his turn soon, and he replies that he hopes so. Alderpaw then leaves camp through the thorn tunnel to go to the half-moon medicine cat meeting. On the way there, Mothwing calls out behind the ThunderClan cats that she wonders how Puddlepaw’s training is going. Jayfeather snaps that she shouldn't think too much on it, since they'll find out when they arrive anyway. They arrive at the Moonpool, and Alderpaw lets Willowshine lead him down the path. Leafpool rushes to greet her Clanmates as Kestrelflight arrives with a two warrior escort. The medicine cats are interested in why he brought company, so the WindClan cat explains Onestar's recent actions and his paranoia. After this, the meeting starts, but the scene skips to every cat waking up with StarClan sharing nothing. Kestrelflight and the RiverClan medicine cats depart, while Jayfeather quizzes Puddlepaw on his herb knowledge. Leafpool tells Alderpaw about how ShadowClan is, and this makes the apprentice wonder how Violetkit could become a warrior in that place.
- Violetkit returns to camp with Needlepaw, thinking of the journey they'd taken to the rogues' camp. Tawnypelt questions them, and then concludes that she has to report the incident to Rowanstar. Needlepaw challenges the ShadowClan leader, while the other apprentices look on with interest, chipping in their own opinions. The silver and white she-cat eventually gives in, leaving camp to tend to the elders as asked. Later that day, Needlepaw asks Violetkit to travel to the rogues' camp to tell Rain that she can't meet him tonight. The kit agrees, but on her way, an owl attacks her. Rain saves her, and Raven insists that she stay for a little while to eat and rest. Violetkit falls asleep, and when she wakes in the morning, she realizes it is already dawn. The rogues take her back to ShadowClan, where Violetkit glances up at her leader, waiting for the impending punishment.
- Twigkit and Alderpaw travel towards ShadowClan territory to meet Violetkit and Needlepaw. The gray kit sulks about her recent experience of falling in the lake, but the medicine cat apprentice comforts her saying that Jayfeather did the exact same thing when he was younger. The pair soon run into a ShadowClan patrol who tell them that Needlepaw is confined to camp after being caught sneaking out with Violetkit. They bid farewell to the other Clan cats, and start to make their way home. Alderpaw tells Twigkit that it might be good that they weren't seen together, because they would've gotten in trouble. The gray kit meows that she wants to be a medicine cat, so that she can be special, but the medicine cat apprentice insists that she already is.
- Violetkit sits outside the nursery, and manages to convince Pinenose to let her finish her vole before returning to the den. She reflects on the Clan’s new behavior toward her, due to the older warriors being more cold, but the younger ones more welcoming. The kit looks for something to do, but sees that all the apprentices are busy. Violetkit spots Rain one moment before he enters camp with Raven and Flame. The rogues bring forward prey offerings, and ask to join ShadowClan. Rowanstar declines their request, and sends a patrol to make sure they leave their territory for good this time. Needlepaw, along with some of the young cats of the Clan, question their leader's decision. The ShadowClan she-cat spits at her leader and decides that if the rogues can't stay, then she'll go live with them. Juniperpaw and Sleekpaw choose to follow Needlepaw, which makes Violetkit sad at the thought of her friend leaving. The silver-and-white she-cat opts to take the kit with them, telling Rowanstar that she found her, so she'll be going too. Much to Leafpool's disapproval, the ShadowClan leader allows them all to leave.
- At the Gathering, Jayfeather and Alderpaw sit in the chilly island clearing while the medicine cat apprentice observes his surroundings. The ginger tom speaks to Leafpool, who informs him of ShadowClan's condition, which includes news about Violetkit and Needlepaw's departure. The meeting starts, and Alderpaw notices something off about the leaders as they bicker amongst themselves. Strikestone, Yarrowleaf, Shadepelt, Foxnose, and Sparkpelt are the new warriors announced at the Gathering. Rowanstar shares the news about his Clan, revealing that when they attacked the rogues the previous night, Beepaw, Berryheart, and Cloverfoot chose to leave ShadowClan as well. The leaders argue for a bit, but then conclude that they will not provoke the rogues and risk Violetkit's safety. The meeting breaks up, and all the cats head for the tree-bridge in a hurried fashion.
- Ivypool trains with Twigpaw in the forest, four moons after Violetkit's disappearance. The apprentice misses a leaf that she aims for, but her mentor still praises her that she learns fast. Ivypool and Twigpaw go back to camp after the warrior mentions the patrol that went to search for the she-cat's mother. The apprentice hasn't heard about this before, but goes to see Alderpaw because she thinks he'll answer her questions truthfully. Twigpaw asks the medicine cat apprentice, who reluctantly reveals that they never searched for her mother, but for something else he couldn't tell her. The gray she-cat rushes over to rogue territory to tell Violetkit the information, but once she does, her sister doesn't seem to care. Needletail approaches Violetpaw and Twigpaw, telling the ThunderClan cat to go home where it's safe. The apprentice wearily turns around and turns her paws towards home.
- Violetpaw glances over her shoulder to catch a final glance of her littermate, but bracken stems block her way. She goes back with Needletail to the rogues' camp, and on the way, they run into Rain and Sleekwhisker. Beenose and Silt are revealed to have become sick with an unknown illness. Once they return, Darktail notices the meager catch and tells Rain that he won’t eat from the fresh-kill pile, which he protests to. The two toms fight, and eventually, Rain loses to his leader. Darktail gouges out one eye, and Needletail shrieks that he's blinded him. Later that night, Violetpaw collects her thoughts, and decides that she can't stay with the rogues. The she-cat thinks that she will go back to ShadowClan, so she waits by their border after catching a rabbit as a gift. A Clan patrol escorts her to camp, where Rowanstar accepts her back eagerly, hoping that she will convince others to come too. Violetpaw insists that she wants to be welcomed back as a Clanmate, not a bargaining piece, so he agrees and assigns Dawnpelt as her mentor. The she-cat feels joyful that she's a Clan cat now, and a real apprentice.
- Now that she's been accepted into ShadowClan again, Violetpaw is determined to prove how helpful a cat she's become. The apprentice rises early each day to fetch fresh bedding for the elders and always took prey last after a long day's hunting. If her mentor was busy, the she-cat would help Puddleshine look for herbs, as the tom still was a bit overwhelmed with keeping the Clan healthy. Dawnpelt and the rest of her Clanmates now have grudging respect for Violetpaw, shown by her hunting skills and refusal to betray her former campmates. She reflects on how much she misses Needletail, and wonders how she is. It is raining outside, so Violetpaw pads over to Puddleshine's den. The medicine cat doesn’t know how to treat the sick cats in his den, so he goes with the apprentice to Rowanstar's den to ask if he knew what to do. The leader listlessly tells him to go away and try something else, but Puddleshine just flicks his tail and plods away. Violetpaw suggests to Dawnpelt that they spend the day gathering herbs, so they do, and when the pair return, they learn that Rowanstar is ill.
- The she-cat rushes to the medicine cat den to wake Puddleshine, who scrambles out into the clearing and announces that he's had a dream from StarClan. The tom reports that the sickness is called yellowcough, and can be cured with lungwort. Crowfrost sends Puddleshine on a patrol with three other cats to fetch the herb, but before they reach it, the cats run into Dovewing and Twigpaw. The ShadowClan patrol warns the ThunderClan cats about the sickness, then go on their way to WindClan territory. A patrol led by Crowfeather stop them, and lead them to talk to Onestar about why they’ve come. The WindClan leader, despite Kestrelflight’s protests, sends the ShadowClan cats away with the promise that if they come back they'll regret it. As they race out, Violetpaw is surprised that Scorchfur drops in behind, putting himself between her and the WindClan patrol that is soon to follow.
- At the Gathering, Sparkpelt reports to her brother about what's happening in ShadowClan, but the medicine cat apprentice is skeptical that it is true. Alderpaw talks to Leafpool for a while, commenting that this will make for an odd Gathering because tensions are high. The meeting starts, and Bramblestar announces that Violetpaw has returned to ShadowClan since they're not present to give the news themselves. Cats from RiverClan are happy about this, but WindClan warriors protest that it might not be a good thing, since the apprentice had stayed with the rogues. ShadowClan then arrives at the Gathering with Crowfrost leading them, as the deputy meows that Rowanstar is sick, but would be better by now if they’d been allowed to have the herb. Onestar hisses that that will never happen, and even though the other medicine cats offer to help, the WindClan tom is not persuaded. The Clan soon leaves, and RiverClan follows after them onto the tree-bridge. Alderpaw wonders if there's anything they can do to help, but Bramblestar comments that it's ShadowClan's problem and there's nothing they should do.
- Twigpaw is excited because her mentor, Ivypool, has suggested that they lead a patrol to search for her mother. Bramblestar reluctantly agrees to their plans, and Squirrelflight assigns Fernsong to go with them as well. Alderpaw hears of what’s happening and decides he'll travel with the cats so he can show them the way to the nest he found Twigpaw in. Once every cat has finished their traveling herbs, they leave on their mission. The next day, the cats near the nest and Twigpaw goes inside the tunnel to see it first. The apprentice is saddened by what she sees, and after scoping the area, she flees the dark space. After, they head towards the Thunderpath, and Twigpaw thinks she sees a stranded cat in the path of a monster. She panics thinking it could be her mother, and shrieks a warning as she watches the monster pass by. Ivypool reassures her apprentice that the cat was fake, as all that's left is a ball of fluff. Twigpaw is dimly aware of her Clanmates leading her away, back into the trees.
- Twigpaw travels to ShadowClan's camp to speak to Violetpaw. The ShadowClan apprentice bundles her out of camp to talk, as she doesn't want to be caught with a ThunderClan cat in the night. Twigpaw tells her sister about the journey to find her mother, but Violetpaw is confused as to why she’d think this was news at all. Dawnpelt finds the pair in the middle of their conversation, and soon, the rest of the camp wakes up. After Twigpaw explains to everyone why she'd come, they almost agree to let her go when Scorchfur hints that they could use her to get the herb from WindClan. Crowfrost agrees that she will stay as a hostage, but will be treated as one of their own while here. Violetpaw leads Twigpaw back to her den, and they soon fall asleep together.
- Alderpaw is woken by Ivypool, who asks if he's seen Twigpaw. She explains that she’d checked everywhere to no avail, so they tell Squirrelflight. The deputy is worried and assigns cats to look for the apprentice, so Alderpaw retreats back to the medicine cat den to help Briarlight with her exercises. The crippled she-cat questions if Twigpaw might have gone to voluntarily, but the ginger tom meows that he doesn't think so. A yowl sounds in the clearing, and it turns out to be a ShadowClan patrol consisting of Crowfrost, Scorchfur, and Tawnypelt. They announce that Twigpaw is safe, but will not be allowed to leave until ThunderClan helps their Clan get some lungwort. Bramblestar says that they will consider their proposition, but as soon as the ShadowClan cats are out of earshot, many oppose helping. The warriors mumble amongst themselves that they could just rescue Twigpaw, due to the fact that many in the enemy Clan are sick and unable to fight. Eventually, Bramblestar decides to send Leafpool and Alderpaw to WindClan's camp to see if they can convince Onestar to allow them to fetch lungwort. The two medicine cats are escorted to Kestrelflight’s den, but the mission still fails as the three are unable to persuade the WindClan leader. Leafpool and Alderpaw hurriedly rush out of the camp, afraid of Onestar's unreasonable words.
- Twigpaw paces in the ShadowClan apprentices' den, missing the musky scent of ThunderClan's camp. Violetpaw asks if she'll come outside, but the gray she-cat meows that she doesn't want to. The ShadowClan apprentice presses that she can’t stay here forever, but Twigpaw growls that all she can smell is pine sap. Flowerkit and Whorlkit visit the pair, and convince the ThunderClan she-cat to come outside and teach them some hunting moves. Out in the clearing, Crowfrost meows that since Pinenose and Snowbird have fallen sick, the healthy cats will have to make their nests in the elders' den. Tawnypelt then assigns Tigerheart to Lionpaw until her mentor is well again, before asking several cats to go hunting. The ShadowClan warrior greets Twigpaw, and she stammers a thank you after the she-cat says she can help herself to prey if she's hungry. Lionpaw and Birchpaw begin to fight over a thrush, and this shocks the ThunderClan apprentice. Twigpaw tries to stop them, and after the fight dissipates, she is shocked when Violetpaw comments that this is normal. The gray she-cat then offers to help Puddleshine, and fetches soaked moss for sick elders. The medicine cat seems exhausted, so Twigpaw tells him to rest while she gives herbs to the cats in his care. Later that night, the ThunderClan apprentice is tired and settles into her nest. Twigpaw and Violetpaw both promise that they'll always be close, as their bond of kinship is stronger than that of Clan loyalty or denmates.
- Two days later, Violetpaw wakes up to Bramblestar's yowl that they've come to take Twigpaw back to ThunderClan. The ShadowClan apprentice tries to convince her sister to hide with her and stay, but the she-cat refuses, and scrambles out of the den. Bramblestar hisses that they won't leave without their apprentice, but Tigerheart asks the leader if he thinks they'll give her up without a fight. The dark tabby scornfully says that the fight wouldn't last long, but Crowfrost walks up and announces that they may take Twigpaw. Violetpaw pleads with her sister one more time to stay, but she refuses, and follows the ThunderClan cats out of camp. Spikefur and Scorchfur challenge the deputy's decision, and Tigerheart sides with them. Crowfrost meows that he couldn't risk a young cat's life any longer, and even if they'd managed to keep Twigpaw, it wouldn't have changed anything. Tawnypelt and Dawnpelt reassure the tom, and lead him back to the den to rest. Later that day, Violetpaw is helping Puddleshine in his den when Kinkfur dies from the sickness. The apprentice races from the camp, wishing that she had Needletail to confide in, because she's lonely. Violetpaw ventures deeper into the forest, and breaks into a purr when she runs into her old friend. Needletail is not happy to see the black-and-white she-cat, and questions to Rain if they should take her back to Darktail's camp. The tom says no, so he and Needletail swiftly stalk away through the woods. When the apprentice returns to camp, there is a vigil for Kinkfur being held. As Crowfrost meows a farewell to the elder, he begins coughing loudly. Puddleshine orders someone to fetch tansy while Violetpaw worries what they'll do since no one is left to lead.
- Alderpaw climbs the slope to the Moonpool, with Jayfeather following behind him. The medicine cat apprentice pauses when he sees Harespring sitting outside the hollow, but is nudged forward by his mentor. As soon as Puddleshine sees Leafpool, he asks how Twigpaw is. The tabby replies politely that she is fine, but the ShadowClan cat insists that she was an amazing help. The ThunderClan cats are surprised, but Leafpool switches the subject, questioning how the sick cats are. Puddleshine's gaze drops as he reports that Kinkfur died yesterday, and none of the others are showing improvement. Mothwing and Willowshine comment that they've scoured their territory for lungwort, to no avail, but offer to give him some birch sap to help the sick cats get energy when they can't eat. Alderpaw angrily states that they should just make WindClan give them the herb, but Leafpool gently says that they'd need their leader's support for that. Kestrelflight steps forward and meows that he may have a more peaceful solution, but has to discuss it with StarClan to make sure what he's doing is right. They lap water from the pool, and soon after, Alderpaw awakens in a meadow. Yellowfang visits him, and praises him for speaking up with the other medicine cats, commenting that her doubts about him have passed. The tabby is confused, but she confirms that StarClan does not always speak with one voice. Yellowfang tells him to always speak out for what he believes in before fading away.
- Kestrelflight awakens from his dream and tells the medicine cats to follow him, before quickly leaving to find Harespring. The WindClan cats then lead the group onto their territory, telling them that they can gather as much lungwort as they like. Harespring meows that it is wrong to let cats die, especially since ShadowClan weren’t the ones who hurt WindClan. The ThunderClan cats reach their camp as dawn is breaking, then Jayfeather turns to his apprentice, commenting that he's proud of him. The blind tom meows that standing up for what you believe in front of other Clans is often hard, and notes that he may be ready to become a full medicine cat.
- Violetpaw feeds a morsel of sparrow to Snowbird as she reflects on what's happened in ShadowClan in the past half-moon. She remembers that Puddleshine had come back with lungwort, but it was too late to save Kinkfur, Crowfrost, and Wasptail. Because of this, Tigerheart has become the new deputy, and Rowanstar had also given Whorlpaw, Flowerpaw, and Snakepaw their apprentice names. Scorchfur stalks into the den and demand to know how Yarrowleaf and Snowbird are. In response, his daughter greets him weakly, but the dark warrior meows that she doesn't seem much better. Puddleshine begins to say that Yarrowleaf is just tired, but Scorchfur snaps that she would've gotten the herb quicker if they’d kept Twigpaw. More cats enter the den and ask the medicine cat how he got the lungwort, but he only gives a vague answer in response. Violetpaw and Dawnpelt decide to fetch something from the fresh-kill pile, but when they pad outside, they see only two things left from yesterday's catch. The cream she-cat questions if the hunting patrols have been out yet, just as Tigerheart and Rowanstar emerge from the leader's den. The deputy assigns the patrols, and soon, each leaves camp. When Violetpaw returns, she makes a nest for Ratscar in the elders' den before padding out into the clearing. Rowanstar begins to assign warriors to come in the Gathering patrol, but some refuse to come. Soon after, Darktail and the cats from his rogue group come into camp. The ShadowClan leader snarls that he'll have this Clan over his dead body, so the rogue deems that fair before attacking the tom. Tawnypelt and Tigerheart pull Darktail off of Rowanstar, but soon back away. In the end, only the ShadowClan leader, his mate, and his son opt to come with him to the Gathering. Violetpaw chooses to stay because she couldn't bear to leave Needletail again, since the she-cat feels like kin.
- Twigpaw is at the Gathering, but can't focus on the cats around her because she’s worrying about Violetpaw. Onestar then starts the meeting, commenting that they shouldn't wait for ShadowClan any longer. Bramblestar and Mistystar leap up into the great oak, and then announce the news from their Clans. Onestar begins to address the cats in the clearing when Rowanstar, Tawnypelt, and Tigerheart arrive. The ShadowClan leader meows that they have come alone, and the reason for that is because their Clan refused to come meet with those who withheld the herb from them. He then states that his Clan has been taken over by the rogues, who said any cat that went to the Gathering was not to return. Bramblestar offers shelter to the three ShadowClan warriors, and Rowanstar accepts his invitation. Afterwards, Twigpaw manages to convince Ivypool to help her check on Violetpaw. They meet Rain and Needletail in the forest, and the apprentice gets the silver she-cat to go fetch her sister from camp. Violetpaw and Twigpaw talk, but conclude reluctantly that they can't abandon their own Clans. Needletail breaks them apart, and hurriedly sends the ThunderClan cats off their territory.
- Alderpaw treats Twigpaw's ear with marigold, as it now has a nick in the tip. The medicine cat apprentice wonders how the she-cat got it, but simply inquires if she'd tell him if anything is wrong. Twigpaw meows that she's fine, just a bit sad about Violetpaw staying with the rogues. Alderpaw feels relieved, and once he finishes treating her ear, dismisses her from the den. Jayfeather then calls for the tom, so he goes to the half-moon meeting for medicine cats with his mentors. As they leave, Squirrelflight organizes hunting patrols. At the Moonpool, all the medicine cats gather except for Puddleshine. The blind mentor performs the ceremony, and Alderpaw is given his full medicine cat name, Alderheart. They then share with StarClan, and the newly named tom looks for Yellowfang in a sunlit meadow. Alderheart can’t find her, but instead, sees two cats talking in the distance. He tries to go over to them, but before he can, receives a prophecy. It is the same one the medicine cat had before leaving on his quest, and knows without a doubt they need to find SkyClan.
- Needlepaw is in the forest after dark for the first time with her mentor, Tawnypelt. The silver she-cat is frightened by the noises she hears, and presses closer to her partner. Tawnypelt meows that she needn't crowd her, before instructing her apprentice to look for prey. The pair begins to walk further, when the tortoiseshell she-cat irritably says to stop looking at the sky because they are not hunting stars. Needlepaw apologizes, but when the cats try to hunt together, the apprentice runs into her mentor. Tawnypelt tells the she-cat to go attempt to catch something in a clearing nearby, so she pads away. The silver she-cat scents something she doesn't recognize, but before she can ask what it is, claws dig into her back. Needlepaw is lifted upward, and she calls for Tawnypelt to save her, but her mentor is unable to. The apprentice thinks quickly, and decides that if she doesn't escape she will die. Needlepaw judges that the only way to break free is to fall, so she claws at the owl until it lets her go. She falls down to the ground below, her descent broken by many branches. Once safely on the forest floor, Needlepaw panics because she can't recognize her location. The apprentice catches a vole, and decides to save it for her Clanmates, as all fresh-kill must go to the Clan. She then drags it to a sheltered hollow, and falls asleep. When the silver she-cat wakes, a tom has her prey dangling in his jaws, so she accuses him of being a thief.
- Needlepaw hisses angrily to give it back, and so he obediently places it on the ground. The tom teases if it helps her sleep, but she retorts that she's saving it for her Clanmates. When he asks where they are, the apprentice meows that they're coming. The tom says that she might want to eat it, as she is a long way from the lake. Needlepaw asks how far, and the tom comments it's a day or two's walk. She asks the cat what his name is, and he replies that it's Tree. They end up sharing the apprentice's vole together, and then tells the loner how she escaped from the owl. The two cats agree to hunt together, then travel back to the lake. Tree shows Needlepaw where his mother made her nest, and the silver she-cat sympathizes with him when he tells his backstory. Needlepaw and the yellow tom travel until nightfall, and then they stop for the night. The apprentice catches a frog and Tree catches a water vole, so they settle down to eat together. After they finish, both curl up in a bed of reeds to sleep. The next morning, Needlepaw catches some prey for her companion, and after they share the meal, the cats continue to travel. By sunhigh, the pair reaches the edge of ShadowClan territory, where a ShadowClan patrol greets them. The silver she-cat begs for him to join her Clan, but her Clanmates refuse, and the loner meows that he's happier by himself anyway. Needlepaw and Tree bid a sorrowful farewell to each other, and hope that they'll meet again.
- The original working title was confirmed on Kate's blog to be The Lost Clan. This was later changed to Thunder and Shadow.
- What had happened to Spiderleg will be revealed in this book. This is proven true, as he's revealed to have died from greencough.
- Kate suspects the cats on the cover are Violetpaw and Twigpaw.
- A compiled list of the errors present in Thunder and Shadow can be found here.
- Thunder and Shadow (EN), HarperCollins (Hardcover), 6 September 2016
- Thunder and Shadow (EN), HarperCollins (Library), 6 September 2016
- Thunder and Shadow (EN), HarperCollins (e-book), 6 September 2016
- Thunder and Shadow (EN), HarperCollins (Paperback), 7 November 2017
- Donner und Schatten (DE), Verlagsgruppe Beltz (hardcover), 14 August 2017
References and citations
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's blog
- ↑ Revealed on the inside right flap of The Apprentice's Quest
- ↑ Revealed on the inside right flap of Thunder and Shadow
- ↑ Revealed on Amazon.com
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's blog
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's blog
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's blog
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's Facebook
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's Blog
- ↑ Revealed on Kate's Blog
- ↑ Revealed on HarperCollins' website
- ↑ Revealed on HarperCollins' website
- ↑ Revealed on HarperCollins' website
- ↑ Revealed on HarperCollins' website
- ↑ Revealed on Beltz.de
|Thunder and Shadow 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 • Bonus Scene|