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"I'd never seen a bird that big, but Birchface was fearless—and so quiet, I couldn't hear him over the breeze in the leaves!"
Rabbitfur to Petalkit and Larchkit in Mapleshade's Vengeance, chapter 3

Birchface is a dark brown, almost black, tabby tom.[2]

Birchface is a ThunderClan warrior with Flowerpaw as his apprentice. He is the son of Oakstar, ThunderClan's leaders, and brother to Frecklewish. During a battle with RiverClan that turned deadly, Birchface is indirectly killed by Appledusk, a RiverClan warrior, when he falls into the river. His apprentice tries to save him, and both cats drown. After his death, Mapleshade becomes pregnant, and ThunderClan believes Birchface is the father. Mapleshade does not initially deny this, gaining her the favor of Birchface's kin. The truth later comes out, and it is revealed that their father is Appledusk, the cat who is indirectly responsible for Birchface's death.

History

In the Novellas

Mapleshade's Vengeance

Birchface is mentioned during a Gathering, by one of RiverClan's warriors, Rainfall. When Mapleshade runs into Rainfall, she remembers the battle at Sunningrocks. Rainfall hisses to remember what happened to Birchface and his apprentice, Flowerpaw. Mapleshade stumbles as she recalls what happened to the son of Oakstar, ThunderClan's leader; the dark tabby was struck by Appledusk so hard, that he had fallen from the very top of Sunningrocks, and down to the river below. Seeing this, his apprentice, Flowerpaw, jumped in after him in an attempt to save him. Flowerpaw's efforts were for naught, however, as both mentor and apprentice are killed by the water, as the current was too strong. Both cats were found down alongside a calmer patch of the water, near ThunderClan's shores, as if they were trying to find a way home.
Mapleshade later confronts Appledusk, saying that out of all the cats he killed, it had to be the son of her leader. Appledusk growls, saying that it was an accident, and how he never meant for Birchface to fall in the river. Mapleshade replies that that's not how ThunderClan sees the incident, and the entire Clan blames Appledusk for the deaths of both Birchface and Flowerpaw.
After the Gathering, Mapleshade announces that she is expecting kits. Beetail, ThunderClan's deputy informs Frecklewish, who asks Mapleshade if they are Birchface's kits, asking if her brother is going to live on through Mapleshade's unborn kits. Unable to answer, Mapleshade just stares at Frecklewish, and the golden she-cat takes that as a confirmation. She thanks Mapleshade, and offers to help raise the kits, and to teach the kits about what a true ThunderClan hero is. Frecklewish confides in Mapleshade, telling the ginger-and-white expecting mother that she still misses Birchface, and that she wonders if her brother can see his Clan.
After Mapleshade gives birth to her kits, Oakstar appears. When Mapleshade introduces her three kits to him, she introduces him as their leader. Oakstar reminds Mapleshade that not only is he their leader, but he is also the kits' grandfather, as Birchface was his kin as well. Gazing at the kits with emotion, Oakstar wonders if Birchface can see them from StarClan. Mapleshade assures Oakstar that Birchface is watching, and Oakstar praises his son, calling him a great warrior, and that ThunderClan is blessed to have his blood running through the veins of young kits. Frecklewish comments that she can see Birchface in each of the kits, and instead of commenting on their coloring like Mapleshade expects, Oakstar asks if she has named the kits. Mapleshade introduces them as Larchkit, Petalkit, and Patchkit, saying that she thinks each kit should be their own cat, instead of an echo of warriors who have gone before. Frecklewish agrees to the queen's decision.
Mapleshade tells Frecklewish to inform Appledusk of the birth of her kits, and the golden she-cat asks why, clearly still blaming the brown tom for the death of her brother. Although hesitant, she and Oakstar agree once Mapleshade says that it is a chance to brag about ThunderClan being stronger than ever with the addition of three new kits. Oakstar says that thanks to Birchface, they have been given three more warriors to defend what is rightfully theirs. Although Mapleshade says that the warrior code says to show mercy, Frecklewish hisses that Appledusk didn't show any mercy to Birchface and Flowerpaw- although Mapleshade thinks to herself that Birchface fell in the water, and Flowerpaw should have never gone after him.
Two moons later, Birchface is again mentioned, this time by a ThunderClan elder by the name of Rabbitfur. As the old cat is teaching Larchkit and Petalkit how to pounce, the elder remarks that Birchface managed to pounce without flattening any cats. Rabbitfur continues to praise Birchface, telling Petalkit and Larchkit that their father was fearless. Mapleshade, upon hearing this, takes her kits outside into the forest for a walk. After this incident, Rabbitfur goes to Ravenwing, ThunderClan's medicine cat, who confronts Mapleshade about the father of her kits, and comes to the conclusion that the dark tabby isn't their father, but instead, it is Appledusk. Oakstar soon finds out about this, and exiles Mapleshade and her kits- furious that the murderer of his son fathered these kits, and even more furious that Mapleshade lied about Birchface being their father.

Goosefeather's Curse

Goosefeather receives a vision of of Mapleshade and Frecklewish confronting each other. Frecklewish accuses Mapleshade of betraying her brother.

Pinestar's Choice

On Pinepaw's first day as an apprentice, Oakstar praises his son, before his eyes cloud with sorrow as he states he will not lose another son to RiverClan. Pinepaw thinks that he had never known his half-brother; all he knows is that he had died in a battle against RiverClan.

Trivia

Mistakes

  • He is shown to be dark red on the official tree.[3]

Character pixels

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Official art

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Quotes

Mapleshade: "If only you hadn't killed Birchface. Of all the cats to lose in the battle, it had to be Oakstar's son!"
Appledusk: "It was an accident. I never meant for him to fall in the river."
Mapleshade: "That's not how my Clanmates see it. They blame you for both our losses."
—Mapleshade confronting Appledusk over the loss of Birchface and Flowerpaw Mapleshade's Vengeance, page chapter 1


"I thought I would never be happy again after Birchface was killed in that terrible battle. But now I can help you to raise his kits, teach them that their father was a true ThunderClan hero, watch them take his place in the Clan... I hope Birchface can see us."
—Frecklewish, still very distraught over the loss of her brother Mapleshade's Vengeance, page chapter 1


"My son was a great warrior. The Clan is honored if his spirit lives on through his kits."
—Oakstar to Mapleshade about her newborn kits Mapleshade's Vengeance, page chapter 3
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"You should be very proud of who your father was. I remember the time we were stalking a pheasant over by Twolegplace. I'd never seen a bird that big, but Birchface was fearless— and so quiet, I couldn't hear him over the breeze in the leaves!"
—Rabbitfur to Patchkit about Birchface Mapleshade's Vengeance, page chapter 3


"Your father could leap twice that distance, and land on the smallest leaf without disturbing a fly."
—Rabbitfur praising Birchface's jumping ability Mapleshade's Vengeance, page chapter 3


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Revealed in Mapleshade's Vengeance, chapter 1
  2. Revealed in Mapleshade's Vengeance, chapter 2
  3. Revealed on the Warriors website family tree
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