|"One day, cats will return here and find a way to succeed where we have failed. This is the leaf-bare of our Clan. Greenleaf will come, but it will bring even greater storms than these. SkyClan will need deeper roots if it is to survive."|
|— Brackenheart in SkyClan's Destiny, page 10|
Brackenheart was an ancient SkyClan medicine cat under Spiderstar’s leadership in the gorge. The SkyClan cats living in the gorge had been mostly wiped out by the rats, and Spiderstar decided to disband the Clan. Most of the remaining cats left to become loners, rogues, or kittypets, and Brackenheart decided to remain in the gorge with the elders to keep the warrior code alive until their death. Brackenheart was the last medicine cat of SkyClan before it was rebuilt by Firestar, and after his death, he ascended to StarClan.
In the Super Editions
- "I feel nothing but sadness and guilt coming from our ancestors. Guilt for taking us away from the forest, and sadness because SkyClan is coming to an end."
- ―Brackenheart talking to the remaining cats of SkyClan SkyClan's Destiny, page 6
- He is anxious to hear about the battle against the rats, and agrees that the patrol can't recover Sunpelt's and Fallensnow's bodies because it would be too dangerous. He tells the Clan that StarClan feels guilty for taking SkyClan away from the forest, and sad because SkyClan has come to an end. Brackenheart agrees to stay in the gorge with Spiderstar and the elders, and he treats his Clanmates' wounds. He suggests to Spiderstar that they move their nests to the elders' den, and believes that SkyClan will live again.
- When Spottedleaf shows Leafstar the end of ancient SkyClan in a dream, Brackenheart is asked by Spiderstar if a Clan will ever live in the gorge again.
- He later appears with Spiderstar, watching cats in StarClan assemble. Leafstar remembers seeing them in her dream.
- In the prologue, Cloudstar asks Brackenheart if he has thought any more about the vision, and Brackenheart, with a dip of his head, replies that he has. He begins to say that he has no idea, but breaks off as a third cat, Skystar, appears. Cloudstar and Brackenheart bow their heads in profound respect, and the founder of SkyClan asks if they have come to a decision. Brackenheart shakes his head, and Cloudstar replies that they haven't. Skystar notes that an answer must be found to prevent the end of SkyClan, but Cloudstar notes that SkyClan will never end, remembering how they found a home in the gorge, and that even when the Clan was scattered Firestar restored it. Brackenheart somberly mews that Firestar is dead, and that his StarClan is far, meaning that he can't do anything for SkyClan now. Skystar insists that they must speak to SkyClan directly to warn them, and Brackenheart agrees, but questions what kind of warning they shall give and what they can tell them to do. Cloudstar replies that they should tell SkyClan to fight, and that the Clan can win if they believe it, but Brackenheart lets out a sign and states that not even Firestar could defeat the scourge. He exclaims that the battle is unwinnable.
- Skystar declares that SkyClan must leave the gorge, yet Cloudstar argues against this. Cloudstar meows that his Clan struggle to make their home in the gorge, and Firestar risked his life to reunite them; Brackenheart nods in vigorous agreement. The brown tabby says that he was SkyClan's last medicine cat before rats drove them out of the gorge, and asks how Skystar expects him to stand by and watch his Clan get driven out a second time, after all they went through. Skystar listened impassively to Cloudstar and Brackenheart's protests, then once again insists that SkyClan must join with the other Clans. Brackenheart draws in a wondering breath, thinking about all five Clans being together again, then gives his pelt a shake, and queries how that would work and where SkyClan would live if they rejoin the other Clans.
- The former medicine cat points out that there is only so much territory, and that they don't know if the other Clans will peacefully accept SkyClan. He adds that they don't know if the cats of SkyClan would want to join the others, as they only knew Firestar, who is now in StarClan.
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Notes and references
- Revealed in Shattered Sky, page 265
- Revealed in SkyClan's Destiny, allegiances
- Revealed in SkyClan's Destiny, page 8
- Revealed in SkyClan's Destiny, page 218
- Revealed in Hawkwing's Journey, page prologue
- Revealed in Firestar's Quest, page 480
- Revealed in SkyClan's Destiny, page 58
- Revealed in SkyClan's Destiny, page 329