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"He wouldn't have survived that fall, and we can't reach his body. I'm sorry, Nightwing. ShadowClan won't forget Smokepaw, I promise."
Blackstar comforting a grief-stricken Nightwing in Dawn, page 279

Below contains in-depth information for chapter twenty one of Dawn (book). If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
Chapter Number: 21 (of 25)
Page Numbers: 274-289

Chapter description

Judging by the clouds in the sky, Leafpaw can tell it's about to snow. The Clans are nearing the mountains where the Tribe of Rushing Water makes their home. Brambleclaw and Stormfur are leading the way up the mountains, and Leafpaw remarks that the mountains are as different from the forest territories as she can imagine. Prey is nowhere to be found, and WindClan's cats seem to be suffering from the hunger. She notices that Tallstar is weak, with Onewhisker by his side constantly. ShadowClan is looking better, and RiverClan looks shabby, with their gleaming coats gone.
One of Tallpoppy's kits asks her if they are really going to climb the mountain, and Tallpoppy bleakly confirms. Morningflower pauses, licking her paw, and Leafpaw asks if she's okay, noticing blood. She calls out to her sister, Squirrelpaw, to stop so that she can tend to Morningflower's wounds. Squirrelpaw assures her she'll tell Firestar. Brambleclaw asks what Leafpaw will need, and she responds for him to get cobwebs and comfrey. Brackenfur promises Leafpaw that they'll find some, and warriors from all the Clans went out to look. Barkface approaches, asking if everything is okay, while Russetfur comes over with some herbs. Leafpaw and Barkface question if the herb will be good for a cut, but they try it anyways, casting Morningflower's paw with cobwebs.
Continuing on, Squirrelpaw finds a step with her sister, and Leafpaw asks if this is the way they've come before. Squirrelpaw responds uncertainly, and Leafpaw is stunned at this, because she had assumed Tawnypelt knew this was the correct way. Squirrelpaw tells her that the Tribe of Rushing Water helped guide them home last time, so she doesn't quite remember. As they continue on, Leafpaw notices Stormfur being the only cat comfortable in the mountains. With Morningflower's wound improving, the medicine cat apprentice keeps an eye out for any more herbs they might find on their way. Her friend, Sorreltail, whispers if she knows they're going the right way, noticing how narrow the path has become. The icy air brings a blast, and cats fall into a single file line along the path. Blackstar reminds everyone to carry the kits as they walk the edge of the mountain.
Leafpaw is alerted by a wail, one that belongs to a ShadowClan apprentice, Smokepaw. He stumbles and clings to the edge of the cliff for his life, while Russetfur attempts to save him. The weight of Russetfur causes more stones to fall, sending Smokepaw into the pit of nothingness. Nightwing howls in grief, attempting to go after him, and Stormfur and Blackstar hold her back. Encouraging the cats to continue on, they go past a gap that Smokepaw's fall left. Leafpaw is relieved to see Longtail on the other side, as Stormfur coaches Weaselpaw to jump across the gap. To calm Tallpoppy's anxiety, Crowpaw takes her kits and jumps across with them. He also comforts Leafpaw as she makes the jumps, and she helps Sorreltail avoid falling.
The cats continue forward, stopping to eat, and Leafpaw notices Blackstar and Tawnypelt already leading patrols out. Firestar meows to his daughter that she and Sorreltail will join Brambleclaw's patrol, denying her request to stay with Cinderpelt. As they pass Ferncloud, Leafpaw asks if Birchkit is okay, which Ferncloud confirms. Birchkit is mad at Leafpaw about sending Cody away, but she shakes her head and gently tells him that Cody has a home of her own. Ferncloud promises to her son that their new home will be fun, and Sorreltail mutters if they'll ever get there.
As the others approach, Squirrelflight and Brambleclaw chat about hunting, where Brambleclaw points out the new skills they'll need to use. Rainwhisker protests using the Tribe's hunting methods, but Brambleclaw chastises him, stating that they need to survive. He demonstrates a technique, much to the ire of Weaselpaw, annoying the ThunderClan tom. Brambleclaw flicks his tail and orders Spiderpaw to come with him, Squirrelpaw to go with Rainwhisker, and tells Sorreltail and Leafpaw to stick together. Leafpaw, seeing the dangerous ledges, wonders if they'll be safe, and Brambleclaw says that they will if they are smart.
Leafpaw follows Sorretail as she climbs up the ledge; the tortoiseshell signals for quiet. Leafpaw remembers to be patient, and Sorreltail leaps forward to grab a mouse, but tumbles over the edge. Remembering Smokepaw, the medicine cat apprentice asks her friend if she's okay, which she confirms. Brambleclaw learns about what happened, warning Sorreltail to be careful before his gaze drifts toward the mouse. He orders his Clanmate to wait, and Leafpaw notices a golden eagle hovering overhead. Brambleclaw points out that if the bird hunts the mouse, then they can hunt the bird and bring back more prey for everyone.
Leafpaw watches the eagle, resisting the urge to run, but to her horror, the bird dives toward the Clan cats instead of the mouse. Terrified, the Clan cats scatter while the warriors fight, and Leafpaw is shocked to see Marshkit in the eagle's talons. Suddenly, Brackenfur leaps up and attacks the eagle, which causes him and Marshkit to escape and fall back. Leafpaw, Brambleclaw, and Sorreltail hastily clamber down the stone ledge and into the valley, where Tallpoppy crouches over her kit. Leafpaw licks Marshkit, and upon examining him, declares he'll be alright.
Cinderpelt further instructs Leafpaw, saying she should clean out the wound, and the Clans begin to argue about the area. Tallpoppy wails about being brought here, and Blackstar questions if they knew about the dangerous eagles. More continue bickering until Leopardstar states that they'll die fighting for any kit. Leafpaw leaves Marshkit and Tallpoppy and inquires if Brackenfur's alright, to which Sorreltail promises to keep an eye on him. Squirrelpaw stares back at her sister, who prays for StarClan as the snow begins to fall.

Characters

Major


Minor


Mentioned


Important events

Deaths

  • Smokepaw, a ShadowClan apprentice, dies in a fall in the mountains.[5]

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 Revealed in Dawn, page 274
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Revealed in Dawn, page 275
  3. Revealed in Dawn, page 276
  4. Revealed in Dawn, page 277
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Revealed in Dawn, page 278
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Revealed in Dawn, page 279
  7. Revealed in Dawn, page 280
  8. Revealed in Dawn, page 281
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Revealed in Dawn, page 282
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Revealed in Dawn, page 283
  11. Revealed in Dawn, page 286
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 Revealed in Dawn, page 288