|"Maybe when some cat dies, part of our grief is feeling guilty and wishing we'd done things differently. Even though there's nothing we could've done."|
|— Waspwhisker to Hawkwing in Hawkwing's Journey, page 59|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter five of Hawkwing's Journey. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 5 (of 35)
- Page Numbers: 51-64
- Several days after Hawkwing found Darktail, he joins Billystorm, Waspwhisker, and Pebblepaw under the Rockpile. It's noted that Hawkwing had been chosen to be on the patrol that will search for the other Clans. Billystorm greets the young gray tabby and tells him they're waiting on Blossomheart. The gray tom stares hostilely at Pebblepaw, remembering Duskpaw, and thinks that she won't be any help at all, and he doesn't want to travel with her. Blossomfall joins them, and some cats from SkyClan pad up to say goodbye. Darktail says that he wishes he were going, and asks Billystorm if he remembers the directions. The ginger-and-white tom replies that he does, and Darktail thanks him for letting him stay. Hawkwing thinks that he deserves it, for he's told SkyClan so much they need to know. Cherrytail tells her son to be careful and to tell her what they find, and Sharpclaw adds that they especially want to hear about ThunderClan. Leafstar wishes them farewell, and the patrol heads out.
- Billystorm meows that they have to go to Twolegplace, but Blossomheart argues, saying that Twolegs aren't good. He reassures the she-cat, telling her he knows the way. Hawkwing asks where they go next, and the ginger warrior replies by saying they cross a Thunderpath, then look for a tree that splits into three. Billystorm continues to recite the directions Darktail gave him, and Waspwhisker is excited to meet the other Clans. Pebblepaw mews that they might get to see Firestar, and Hawkwing thinks to himself that she's a mouse-brain; Firestar is dead. Billystorm and Waspwhisker tell her that his kin would be there, too. The two older warriors then talk about the other Clans and what they're like. The apprentice asks if it would be good to be by other cats, but Hawkwing snaps at her, saying that they would then be stronger. Pebblepaw fluffs up her fur and is about to retort, but she is interrupted by Blossomheart, who says that there's a cloud shaped like a cat with a curly tail. The gray tabby snaps at his sister, asking how she can be in high spirits after everything that's happened, and she flinches away. He's about to apologize before Pebblepaw steps between them and says that the cloud does look like a cat.
- They continue on, the two she-cats walking together, and with Hawkwing in the rear. The warrior silently scolds the speckled apprentice, seething that he can't think around her. Billystorm stops in front of Twolegplace and tells the patrol to hunt, as there wouldn't be much prey in Twolegplace. Hawkwing quickly finds a mouse, beginning to creep closer to it. As he gets ready to pounce, Pebblepaw rushes past him and scares the mouse. The gray tabby watches Blossomheart chase a squirrel up a tree, right into Pebblepaw's claws. She kills it and thanks StarClan for the prey. The ginger-and-white she-cat praises the apprentice, who meows that they make a good team. Hawkwing is impressed, but reminds himself that she made him lose his catch. Waspwhisker and Billystorm arrive; the gray-and-white warrior is carrying a blackbird. Billystorm is impressed by Pebblepaw's squirrel, and asks who caught it. Blossomheart tells the ginger-and-white tom that Pebblepaw did, but the speckled she-cat argues, saying that they both did. Billystorm praises Pebblepaw and says to eat. The apprentice gestures to Hawkwing to come over and share the squirrel. He begins to eat, noting that every bite tastes like crowfood. He admits to himself that she did well, but wishes he could've caught his own prey.
- The patrol sets off into Twolegplace with Billystorm in the lead. The fresh air turns to the stench of monsters and unfamiliar food. Waspwhisker pads alongside Hawkwing, noting that Duskpaw would have loved this. The tom adds that the young apprentice loved Twoleg food, and he would always try to sneak around the rules. Memories of Duskpaw choke the gray tabby, and he finds himself unable to respond to the older warrior. Waspwhisker goes on, saying that, as his mentor, he'd have to punish his apprentice sometimes, but it was always hard to stay mad at him; Duskpaw would always make jokes, and never complained about doing apprentice tasks. Managing to speak at last, Hawkwing responds that his brother would always think of the best games when they were kits. The tabby begins to feel comforted by Waspwhisker's stories, happy that someone was speaking openly about Duskpaw to him. Hawkwing softly mews that he'll never stop missing his lost sibling, and the older warriors nods, revealing that he blames himself. The gray tabby tom is shocked by this, for he believes it's his own fault.
- Waspwhisker continues to explain that if he had been more stern with Duskpaw, the apprentice would never have snuck off that day, and he'd still be alive right now. Hawkwing, feeling strange that he's comforting an older warrior, tells him that he couldn't have known that, and that nobody stopped Duskpaw from doing what he wanted. The tabby continues to say that he's the one who's responsible, and he could've saved him from the fire. Waspwhisker touches Hawkwing's shoulder with the tip of his tail, telling him that maybe part of grief is feeling guilty and wishing something had been done differently, though there was nothing that could've been done. The gray-and-white warrior sighs, adding that Duskpaw wouldn't have wanted them to feel guilty, as the apprentice always wanted everybody to be happy. Hawkwing tells a story of when he was an apprentice, he missed a really easy catch, but the ginger tom had comforted him with a funny story. Waspwhisker adds that though they'll grieve for him and miss him, they should remember Duskpaw would want their memories of him to bring happiness.
- Suddenly, a high-pitched Twoleg yowl is heard, and Billystorm orders his patrol to get down. While having his conversation with Waspwhisker, Hawkwing had stopped paying attention to his surroundings, and realizes they had left the last of the dens behind. They were now crossing a stretch of grass with a Thunderpath beyond. Several Twoleg kits are running around, and Billystorm hisses for the rest of the patrol to listen closely. He says that Twolegs can be dangerous, and their kits can be even worse, adding that the grass won't cover them for long. Pebblepaw asks what they should do, and the ginger-and-white tom replies that they'll have to run; they'll be safe once they cross the Thunderpath. The cats are spotted by a Twoleg kit; Billystorm gives the cats the order to run. The cats pelt towards the Thunderpath, the kits caterwauling behind them. One of Hawkwing's forepaws slip into a dip in the ground, and he begins tumbling and rolling, the breath driven from him. His Clanmates are far ahead of him, but Billystorm stops to help him. The gray tabby assures the older warrior that he's okay, and the tom continues running ahead.
- A shadow falls over Hawkwing, and he looks up to see a Twoleg kit reaching to pick him up. The tom springs up and runs away, feeling something strike his back. A liquid begins running through his fur, and he assumes it's blood, but doesn't feel any pain. Hawkwing hurtles himself across the Thunderpath without looking up, nearly getting hit by a huge monster. The tom collapses in the grass, his Clanmates gathering around him, concerned looks on their faces. The tabby tom gasps that he's bleeding, but realizes that the liquid dripping down his back is cold rather than warm. Billystorm sniffs him, his eyes sparkling with amusement, and tells him it's water. The Twolegs were shooting it out of shiny things in their paws. Relief floods through Hawkwing, and he notices that the rest of the cats on the patrol also seem to be struggling to keep a serious expression. He realizes it's pretty funny, noting that Duskpaw would've been rolling on the ground by now.
- The tom notices that Pebblepaw is amused at him too, and anger floods through him. He thinks that Duskpaw isn't here to laugh because of her; how dare she laugh at him? Hawkwing yowls at the apprentice that it wasn't funny, and he could've been killed. Pebblepaw reminds him that it was water, and he counters that he could've drowned; Blossomheart snorts with laughter. The apprentice asks if the gray tabby is a mouse, then clarifies that even a mouse couldn't have drowned in that much water. Hawkwing slides out his claws, telling Pebblepaw that he knows she doesn't take death very seriously, and he is satisfied to see that she is hurt by his remark. Billystorm looks ready to step in, but decides not to. The apprentice protests to Hawkwing's statement, but turns away, saying that there's no point in trying to make him understand. The tabby hisses, whirling around and stalking away from the Thunderpath.
- The other cats catch up, and Billystorm tells him to take it easy, for blaming another cat doesn't lessen one's grief. He adds that they still have a long way to go, and it won't be easy if they fight among themselves. Hawkwing only grunts an acknowledgement, deciding that the only way to survive the quest is to keep to himself. He doesn't care if he's being fair anymore; he just misses Duskpaw.
- A patrol consisting of Hawkwing, Billystorm, Waspwhisker, Pebblepaw, and Blossomheart leaves to find the other four Clans with directions given to them by Darktail.
Notes and references
|Hawkwing's Journey 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 • Chapter 26 • Chapter 27 • Chapter 28 • Chapter 29 • Chapter 30 • Chapter 31 • Chapter 32 • Chapter 33 • Chapter 34 • Chapter 35 • Manga|
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