|"The journey was difficult enough. We didn’t think things would be even harder once we returned. We were so sure StarClan would show us the way, but they haven’t, and we can’t afford to wait. Taking the Clan away from their home is such a big responsibility..."|
|— Brambleclaw to Leafpaw in Dawn, chapter 9|
- 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: 9 (of 25)
- Page Numbers: 125-141
- A mournful yowl coming from below the rock cleft jolts Leafpaw awake. For a heartbeat, she thinks she is back in that cage, trapped, and that her escape had only been a dream. Forest smells touch her nose, the scent of the woods, and the river, and an icy breeze, and she remembers she's at Sunningrocks. She blinks, and peers over the edge of the hollow. Cody, her kittypet friend, whispers to her. Cody had stayed with ThunderClan, and slept with Leafpaw in the apprentices’ gully. Leafpaw feels Cody's soft fur bristling against her flank, and she replies that the yowl had sounded like Ferncloud. She spots Dustpelt; the tabby tom stands on the frosty slope, silhouetted by the early dawn light.
- A kit is dangling loosely from the tom's jaws, and he takes it away. Another sorrowful yowl follows Dustpelt, coming from the makeshift nursery, and Leafpaw scrambles from her den. She races to Ferncloud's side and asks what happened. Ferncloud whispers that Hollykit is dead, and that Dustpelt has gone to bury her. She tucks her remaining kit close to her belly and recalls that when she woke, Hollykit was very cold, and that she licked her and licked her but she would not wake up. Leafpaw feels sorrow grip her heart. She wonders what kind of medicine cat she is if she hadn't even noticed how Hollykit was close to death. She breaths that she is so sorry for Ferncloud.
- One by one, the Clan gathers above the nursery in grim silence. Cody stands among them, her eyes round with sympathy. To Leafpaw's relief, her Clanmates are taking no notice of the kittypet. They are now all sharing a common enemy - the Twolegs who are trapping cats and tearing up the forest. Cinderpelt scrambles down into the hollow and orders Leafpaw to fetch some poppy seeds, and that Ferncloud must not waste what little energy she has on grieving.
- Leafpaw hurries to the crack in the rock where Cinderpelt stored her small stack of remedies and reaches in to pull out a leaf-wrapped supply of poppy seeds. She wishes with all her heart that they were still in the ravine, where the medicine cats had kept their den in the rock well stocked. Looking at the withered leaf beneath her paw, she guessed there were only two or three doses of poppy seeds left, and there was no hope of finding more with leaf-bare nearly upon them.
- Firestar calls to Leafpaw and asks about Ferncloud. Upon hearing the news, he growls in anger and wonders what he can do. Mousefur notes how cold it was as Hollykit died, but Leafpaw says Birchkit survived. Firestar objects and trails off, saying it will only get colder and colder. Brambleclaw meows that they should leave soon, but the ThunderClan leader says they must leave with the other Clans.
- Leafpaw heads to the makeshift nursery to give Ferncloud poppyseed. Dropping them at Cinderpelt's paws, she notices that Cody is there to comfort the mourning queen. Leafpaw learns that Cody lost a whole litter of kits since her Twolegs sold them. When Ferncloud begins to fret again, Cinderpelt, Cody, Leafpaw and Firestar try to comfort her. Cody encourages Ferncloud to eat the poppyseed. Firestar finally notices Cody, and Leafpaw introduces her kittypet friend. Firestar apologizes to Cody for being unable to provide much in the way of safety for her, and promises her that they’ll escort her home as soon as possible. Firestar then asks Cinderpelt if Ferncloud and Birchkit will be okay, and Cinderpelt says they will. Firestar pads away.
- Cody tells Leafpaw that it’s hard to believe Firestar was ever a kittypet, and Leafpaw says that she never really thinks about it. Leafpaw then asks Cody if she’s all right staying here, and Cody says she is. Cody tells Cinderpelt and Leafpaw that they should go take care of other cats, and that she can comfort Ferncloud. Leafpaw and Cinderpelt leave the den.
- The Clan is huddled in small groups on the exposed rock. Leafpaw pads down the slope toward the trees, and picks up the familiar scents of Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw. Brambleclaw is meowing about how he told Firestar that they should be leaving before the snow comes on the mountains, and Squirrelpaw argues that they don’t even know if they should go through the mountains. Brambleclaw mutters that perhaps Midnight was wrong. Leafpaw reveals herself to Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw and says that she heard everything, and Brambleclaw asks her what she thinks. Leafpaw asks if they doubt StarClan or themselves. Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw say that they don’t know what to do, and Leafpaw reminds them that in the end, it’s Firestar’s decision. Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw then wonder what it will mean for Graystripe if they leave, and Squirrelpaw mentions how when they returned from the sun-drown-place, Graystripe welcomed them by saying ‘fire and tiger have returned’. Leafpaw wonders if she should tell them, and Squirrelpaw tells Leafpaw that she knows she’s hiding something. Leafpaw admits that Cinderpelt had a vision that fire and tiger would destroy the Clan, and Squirrelpaw and Brambleclaw realize that the prophecy is talking about them. Squirrelpaw is outraged at the idea, and Leafpaw reassures her that only a few cats know. Brambleclaw wonders if they won’t inadvertently destroy the Clan by leading them on a dangerous journey for no reason.
- The three cats return to Sunningrocks as the sun is lowering in the sky. Leafpaw had caught a mouse, Brambleclaw has a starling, and Squirrelpaw carries a plump thrush. Brackenfur meets them and points out the fresh-kill pile that Ashfur is guarding. Leafpaw drops her meager offering onto the pile and, seeing how small it is, decides not to take any fresh-kill. She pads toward Cinderpelt and Mousefur, and asks her mentor how Ferncloud is doing. Cinderpelt says that Cody is taking care of her, and Mousefur says that Cody seems to be doing okay here for a while. Leafpaw asks Cinderpelt if Ferncloud will lose Birchkit, and Cinderpelt says that he was always the strongest of her three. Mousefur says that they won’t last the winter if they leave, and Dustpelt agrees. He announces to the Clan that they must leave the forest, and Mousefur points out that they need a deputy. Firestar enters camp, and says that they cannot leave without the other Clans. Dustpelt and Firestar argue, and Brambleclaw tells Dustpelt that Firestar is right that they must wait. Firestar reassures Dustpelt that he will try to convince ShadowClan and RiverClan again. Leafpaw feels relieved until Dustpelt and Mousefur again say that they need a deputy. The cats start talking about who should replace Graystripe, and Firestar tells the Clan that the senior warriors will share the duties for now. He then beckons Leafpaw over to speak with her in private.
- Firestar asks Leafpaw is she’s had any signs from StarClan. Leafpaw replies that she hasn’t, and Firestar says that neither has Cinderpelt. Firestar angrily asks why StarClan remains silent, and Leafpaw says that she felt the same way when she was trapped in the Twoleg den, before her Clanmates came to save her. Firestar realizes that StarClan won’t do anything to keep the Clans together because the Clans have it in their hearts. Firestar tells Leafpaw that he wished she could’ve known Spottedleaf, as she reminds him of her. Leafpaw is touched and decides not to tell Firestar about all the times Spottedleaf had visited her. She hopes with all her heart that StarClan will come with them when they finally leave the forest.
Notes and references
|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|
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.