|"The heart of the forest - and the roots of life for the four Clans - had been ripped out. Nothing would ever be the same again."|
|— Narrator about the destruction of Fourtrees in Dawn, page 76|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter one of Dawn (book). If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 6 (of 25)
- Page Numbers: 73-90
- The waning moon makes the leafless forest glow silver, and frost edges the dying ferns as Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw pad through the trees. Squirrelpaw frets that it’ll be cold at Fourtrees, but Brambleclaw says that at least it’ll be clear with Silverpelt shining. The two cats follow Firestar and Cinderpelt, with Cinderpelt struggling to keep up with her limp made worse from the cold and hunger. Squirrelpaw wonders out loud how long it’ll be before they go if there’s a sign, wanting to find her sister before the Clans leave the forest. Brambleclaw replies that he doesn’t know, saying that Firestar can’t force any of the Clans to leave as he obeys the warrior code and StarClan like everyone else.
- Squirrelpaw’s belly tightens as she remembers the Clans reaction to Firestar telling them about the message she and Brambleclaw had brought back from StarClan. The forest cats had been shocked; Frostfur had cried that they’d die if they left the forest, but Sorreltail had pointed out that they’ll die if they stay. Speckletail had rasped that this was their home, but Shrewpaw had eagerly asked where they were going. The memory of Hollykit’s piteous mew made Squirrelpaw’s pelt prickle, as the kit had wailed asking if they had to go.
- Squirrelpaw hisses to Brambleclaw if Dustpelt was right, asking why any cat would follow the advice of a badger they just met. Brambleclaw argues that StarClan sent them to Midnight, so what she said must be true. Squirrelpaw guesses that he’s trying to convince himself as much as her. Squirrelpaw says that they just have to hope they see the sign tonight, and that it’s not up to them if StarClan has something to say to the Clans. The journey to Fourtrees takes longer than usual, as the cats have to avoid the ares of the forest that the Twolegs have destroyed. Squirrelpaw ravaged spaces, and asks herself under her breath how any cat can still think this is their home. Brambleclaw shakes his head and pads after Firestar toward Fourtrees.
- For a moment, Squirrelpaw closes her eyes and it feels like very other Gathering she’s ever attended, and she can almost hear the murmur of cats sharing tongues below. But there’s no full moon, and Squirrelpaw’s eyes snap open to peer over the crest of the rise. Her breath catches in her throat when she sees the hollow, for even though Webfoot had warned them about what had happened to Fourtrees, Squirrelpaw had never imagined something as terrible as she sees now. The four giant oaks are completely gone, even down to their stumps, and their trunks lie on the ground, neatly sliced by giant claws. Squirrelpaw can smell the bitter sap seeping from the wood, and thinks that nothing will be the same ever again.
- Squirrelpaw wonders how StarClan can bear to look down on this destruction as she says that Webfoot told them what had happened, but she never thought...Her voice trails off. Firestar looks at her with sympathy in her eyes, then leads the ThunderClan cats down to the clearing. Sticky sap clings to Squirrelpaw’s fur as she picks her way through the wreckage. She scans the clearing in disbelief and exclaims that the Great Rock is gone. Brambleclaw stops dead and gasps how that could happen, then bounds over to the huge hole where the rock once stood. Squirrelpaw dazedly murmurs that she thought it had roots like a tree that reached far down, and nothing could ever remove it.
- Firestar calls the others over from the far side of the clearing. He and Cinderpelt stand belly-deep in mud beside a vast stone, and after a moment Squirrelpaw recognizes it as the Great Rock, albeit upside down. Brambleclaw spits that Twolegs must’ve used their monsters to remove it. Squirrelpaw can see the gouge marks where the monsters uprooted the rock, and thinks that this is worse than losing every tree in the forest, because although trees wither and die, the rock should have remained for seasons to come. A harsh mew sounds from the side of the clearing announces that there will be no more Gatherings, and Squirrelpaw recognizes it as Blackstar’s voice and realizes that the others are already here. Remembering Mousefur’s warnings of an ambush, Squirrelpaw scans they newcomers and is relieved to see Tawnypelt, Crowpaw, and Stormfur among them.
- Brambleclaw runs over to Tawnypelt to greet his sister. Squirrelpaw hears Firestar give a disapproving growl, and her paws prickle with frustration as she wonders how he could question their loyalty when they’re only trying to save the Clans. Every cat had brought their leader and medicine cat, but Squirrelpaw is surprised to see that Mudfur, RiverClan’s elderly medicine cat, brought his apprentice Mothwing and her brother Hawkfrost. Mudfur hisses that it cannot be true as he stares at the Great Rock, his pelt standing on end and his tail quivering. Mothwing tries to comfort him with licks on his shoulder, but he doesn’t stop shaking. Cinderpelt awkwardly picks her way across the trunks to press her out against Mudfur’s side.
- Squirrelpaw follows her father to join the other cats at the base of the Great Rock. She glances at Stormfur, Crowpaw, and Tawnypelt, desperately wanting to know how their Clans had received them, but they stand in silence. Tallstar tremblingly asks how they will climb the Great Rock now, and Squirrelpaw notices his frail body and wonders how the WindClan leader made the journey there at all. Leopardstar says that the marks will give them a grip as she stretches her forepaws up to the gashes in the rock. She pushes herself off the mud with her hind legs and scrabbles upward, Blackstar determinedly following. Tallstar watches them, and Firestar offers to go behind him. Tallstar nods and begins scrambling up the rock, and Firestar springs after him, propping the old tom up with his shoulder.
- As the leaders disappear over the top of the rock and the medicine cats go around, Squirrelpaw asks Tawnypelt, Crowpaw, Brambleclaw and Stormfur if they should climb up to see Midnight’s sign too. Brambleclaw answers that he doesn’t think it matters who sees it, and Stormfur reminds them that Midnight never said it had to be them. Tawnypelt murmurs that Blackstar is ready to leave the forest. Squirrelpaw exclaims that that’s great, and that Firestar hasn’t decided yet. Tawnypelt says that she thinks Blackstar had already decided to go even before she came back with Midnight’s warning. Squirrelpaw demands to know if Blackstar believed her, but Tawnypelt doesn’t say anything. Brambleclaw presses close to his sister and asks if they gave her a hard time. Tawnypelt shakes her head and says that they acted like she was a stranger, and that Tallpoppy’s kits were afraid of her. Squirrelpaw mews that it isn’t easy for her and Brambleclaw either, and that it’s as if they aren’t part of the Clan anymore. Brambleclaw reassures her that of course they’re part of the Clan, and that it’ll just take a while for things to go back to normal. Stormfur spits that nothing will ever go back to normal with what’s happening to WindClan’s, ThunderClan’s, and ShadowClan’s territories. Stormfur goes on, saying that although the destruction hasn’t reached RiverClan yet, everything’s changed, as Mistyfoot has gone missing, and Hawkfrost is now deputy.
- Squirrelpaw gasps, and Brambleclaw asks if Twolegs took her. Stormfur asks why the Twolegs would take her, and Squirrelpaw tells him that they took Leafpaw. Crowpaw says that Gorsetail’s missing too. Tawnypelt mews that no ShadowClan cats have been taken, but that it’s only a matter of time, and that the Twolegs have invaded so much of their territory that they’re starving anyway. Brambleclaw says that wether it’s starvation or Midnight’s message that drives the Clans out, they can’t stay in the forest. Stormfur reminds him that the Twolegs haven’t touched RiverClan territory, and that Hawkfrost is convinced that they never will and that Stormfur is a traitor for going on the journey. Stormfur goes on, saying that Hawkfrost told him that Feathertail would still be alive if he hadn’t been caught up in the other Clans’ problems.
- Crowpaw hisses that it was staying with the Tribe so long that killed Feathertail, not the journey. Stormfur flinches. Squirrelpaw exclaims that they had to help the Tribe, and stares at Crowpaw with bewilderment. She wonders how he had been so much easier to get along with by the end of their journey, but had seemed to reverted right back to being as prickly as ever. Brambleclaw asks Crowpaw how WindClan reacted to Midnight’s message, and Crowpaw mutters that they accepted it without question, and that WindClan is getting more desperate as there’s barely anything to eat on the moor. Brambleclaw asks if Tallstar wants to leave, and Crowpaw replies that he wants to go as soon as he can, but his biggest worry is that the Clan won’t be strong enough to make it. Squirrelpaw tells Crowpaw that she’s so sorry for him, but Crowpaw growls that he doesn’t need their pity, and that he’ll make sure his Clan survives.
- Squirrelpaw feels a surge of anger as she asks how he can act like only he can save his Clan if he even remembers the journey at all. Brambleclaw stops her, saying that they mustn’t fight now. Squirrelpaw grumpily falls silent, and Crowpaw looks away. Tawnypelt glances up at the rock and asks if they think the sign will come. Stormfur mutters that perhaps they’re too late and, glancing at Crowpaw, says that he wishes they hadn’t stayed in the mountains. Brambleclaw reminds him that they all agreed at the time, but Crowpaw just stares at his paws.
- Firestar’s yowls sounds from above them, saying that they should wait a while longer. Blackstar’s frame appears above the summit of the rock as he asks why they should. He mews that they wasted time coming here, and there’ll be no sign tonight. He asks if they really need someone to tell them that the forest is being destroyed when they can just look around them. Squirrelpaw and the others back away as Blackstar jumps down from the rock, Leopardstar following. Firestar protests that it’s not even moonhigh, but Leopardstar says that even if StarClan does send a sign, it’s no concern of RiverClan’s. Even though Squirrelpaw is frustrated with the RiverClan leader, she can understand she wasn’t as troubled, as her cats weren’t plagued by monsters and Twolegs. Crowpaw hisses that hunger will soon make her change her mind.
- Firestar says that they surely want to see what StarClan thinks they should do, but Blackstar mews that his fur is so thin from Twolegs stealing his Clan’s prey that it’s too cold for him to continue. As Blackstar clambers away over the logs, Firestar yowls that they can’t leave yet. Blackstar calls over his shoulder that there’ll be no sign tonight. Firestar scrambles down from the rock toward the ShadowClan leader, saying that StarClan won’t desert them. Blackstar faces him and claims that he didn’t say StarClan would desert them, but that his Clan would rather rely on their leader’s judgement than the rumors of some inexperienced warriors and a badger.
- Tallstar exclaims that StarClan will show them away as he half scrambles, half falls down the side of the Great Rock. Crowpaw leaps forward to soften his leader’s landing. Tallstar hits the mud and scrambles to his paws, insisting that StarClan will know where they can find new territories. Blackstar says with chilling certainty that they are perfectly capable of finding a new home themselves. Cinderpelt asks Blackstar if he has somewhere in mind already. Blackstar announces that ShadowClan is going to live in Twolegplace. Firestar protest that he can’t do that, as that will leave only three Clans in the forest. Blackstar points out that soon there won’t be a forest, and says that ShadowClan is going alone.
- Blackstar turns to leave, but Firestar blocks his way. Blackstar shows his teeth, and Squirrelpaw hisses to Brambleclaw that they can’t let them fight. Brambleclaw says he knows, and leaps over to Firestar’s side. He tells his leader that he must convince ShadowClan to come with them, and that if there’s no sign, they can go back to the sun-drown-place and ask Midnight where to go. Leopardstar asks Squirrelpaw, Tawnypelt, and Stormfur why they should go to a strange place just because a bunch of ThunderClan cats said StarClan sent them there. Tawnypelt asks if they’re questioning her loyalty to ShadowClan, and Stormfur hisses that his sister died to fetch Midnight’s message. Squirrelpaw wonders if StarClan is watching the arguing Clans and thinking that they don’t deserve to be saved.
- Tallstar rasps that if they fight, the sign will never come. Blackstar growls that ShadowClan already knows where to go and doesn’t need a sign. Firestar asks Leopardstar what she’s planning to do, and Leopardstar replies that the river is still full of fish, and it would be stupid for RiverClan to leave. Cinderpelt asks why Feathertail was sent on the journey if it’s not RiverClan’s problem. Leopardstar retorts that only Feathertail can answer that, and she’s dead. Hawkfrost climbs up beside Leopardstar and says that he agrees that the other Clans should leave. Squirrelpaw is taken aback by how boldly he addresses the Clan leaders. Brambleclaw accuses Hawkfrost of just wanting to steal the other Clans’ territory. Hawkfrost says that if they aren’t there, they won’t need it anymore. Brambleclaw snarls that he might feel differently if he were Clanborn.
- Firestar snaps at Brambleclaw to show some respect, and Brambleclaw looks down at his paws. Squirrelpaw sees Hawkfrost’s whiskers twitch in satisfaction an feels a surge of anger on Brambleclaw’s behalf. Tallstar fretfully mews that they’re getting nowhere. Firestar insists that the four Clans must remain together, but Blackstar is already padding away with Littlecloud. Tawnypelt whispers to Squirrelpaw that she has to go, but Squirrelpaw asks what about the sign. Tawnypelt apologizes and says that she can’t wait, then hurries after her leader and medicine cat.
- Leopardstar wishes Firestar good luck before turning away and leading her cats from the clearing. Stormfur brushes against Squirrelpaw’s pelt and whispers that he’ll try to talk to her and Brambleclaw soon. Squirrelpaw frantically asks what they’ll do without the sign, and Stormfur says that perhaps StarClan has no power there anymore. Squirrelpaw stares at him in horror, wondering if that could be true. Firestar sighs that he couldn’t persuade them as he watches the RiverClan cats leave. Tallstar wheezes that his Clan must find a new home before they all starve, and asks Firestar to help WindClan make the journey. Firestar miserably says that they can’t leave without the other Clans, mentioning a fifth Clan. Squirrelpaw wonders what her father means by a fifth Clan.
- Tallstar argues that StarClan will be with them always, and Squirrelpaw thinks that StarClan is the fifth Clan. Tallstar warns Firestar that he is too proud, and that if he insists on waiting for the other Clans, his Clanmates will die. Firestar tells Tallstar that he wants to help, but that his heart is saying that they can’t leave without persuading the other Clans to come with them. Tallstar hisses that WindClan will wait, but that he’s disappointed that Firestar won’t help them now. He pads away with Barkface back to the moor.
- Squirrelpaw asks Brambleclaw why there wasn’t a sign. Brambleclaw asks if she thinks Midnight was wrong, saying thug everyone can tell the forest is being destroyed just by looking around them. He says that perhaps Blackstar is right that every Clan should save itself. Squirrelpaw fights to control her panic as she exclaims that they have to believe Midnight because StarClan sent them to her so they could save the Clans. Brambleclaw murmurs what it they can’t. Squirrelpaw stares at him in dismay. She whispers not to give up, saying that they didn’t make the journey and lose Feathertail for nothing and that they have to save the Clans.
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Revealed in Dawn, page 73
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Revealed in Dawn, page 74
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 Revealed in Dawn, page 77
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Revealed in Dawn, page 78
- ↑ Revealed in Dawn, page 76
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Revealed in Dawn, page 79
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 Revealed in Dawn, page 80
- ↑ Revealed in Dawn, page 81
- ↑ Revealed in Dawn, page 85
|Dawn (book) 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|
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