|"You can try walking on it when you've finished eating. Not too far, but you need to start exercising it before the muscles waste away."|
|— Fallen Leaves to Hollyleaf about her leg in Hollyleaf's Story, page 27|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter two of Hollyleaf's Story. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 2 (of 10)
- Page Numbers: 22-29
- Hollyleaf wakes up back in the tunnel, and is burning up and thirsty. In her delirium, she imagines that she is in the medicine den and wonders why Leafpool wasn't giving her any water. She bumps her nose into a wad of moss and sucks at it, swallowing the water down. Hollyleaf realizes that she isn't alone as she feels a cat pushing something beneath her injured leg. She hisses in pain and the strange cat tells her they are giving her feathers to make her more comfortable and to lie still. Hollyleaf, not recognizing the cat's scent and voice, asks them who they are and where she is. She flails her paws and asks them to let her go. A paw presses down on the black cat's shoulder and another paw pushes some leaves next to her. They tell her that everything is all right, she's safe, and to eat the herbs and sleep. She eats the comfrey and the poppy seeds and falls back asleep.
- When Hollyleaf next wakes up, the black cat lies still for a moment, and realizes she isn't back in the medicine den. The former warrior tries to recall the scent of the cat who helped her last night, but she is distracted by the hunger in her belly. Hollyleaf tries to stand up and flops back down after her leg crumbles underneath her weight. The cat reappears from the shadows, exclaiming that she is awake and asks how her leg was. Hollyleaf looks over the ginger-and-white tom and questions who he is. The cat ignores her question and pushes a minnow toward her. Hollyleaf tells him she didn't like fish, and the tom tells her they don't always have a choice what to eat down here. When her belly lets out a loud growl, Hollyleaf forces herself to eat the fish, imagining it is several kinds of forest prey. After she eats and takes a drink from the moss, Hollyleaf thanks him for the food and thinks that it didn't taste too bad. The ginger-and-white tom asks her if she is Hollypaw, and she corrects him, telling the cat that she is Hollyleaf now.
- She asks how the cat knows her name and he replies by saying he's seen her before with her littermates rescuing the kits. The former ThunderClan cat remembers how she came down here when the tunnels were flooding and had washed out into the lake. She asks him who he is again and he introduces himself as Fallen Leaves as he rearranges the feathers around her leg. Hollyleaf asks him where he came from and he answers that he once lived in the hills above the lake. Fallen Leaves orders her to eat more comfrey and she asks him if he was a medicine cat. He doesn't know what that is, but mentions that his group knew about herbs and injuries so they could help one another. She asks the ginger-and-white cat where his group was, but he tells her to ask no more questions and to rest to let her leg recover. He supposes that she would like to return to her group and she tells him that she couldn't ever go back. Fallen Leaves tells her that's up to her and offers to bring something back for her later. He walks away in the shadows and Hollyleaf can see that the tunnels seem more pale.
- Hollyleaf notes that she is lying next to a small cave, as she could hear her voice echoing while she'd been speaking to Fallen Leaves. Hollyleaf closes her eyes and wonders if the cat had been sent by StarClan or if she was really lucky to have encountered him. She wakes from her doze to find another fish, freshly soaked moss, and more comfrey right by her. The black she-cat wonders if it was night and how many days she had spent underground. After eating the fish and comfrey, Hollyleaf tries to stay up for her companion, but gives up after thinking she would see him again in the morning. After she wakes up and is washing herself, he returns with a mouse. Hollyleaf is excited and offers to share it with Fallen Leaves. He refuses the offer and asks how her leg was. Hollyleaf tells him she could move it now and it doesn't hurt as much. Her caretaker decides that she could try exercising it, but cautions Hollyleaf to not walk too far. She is surprised as he sounded like a medicine cat, and asks if he came from the mountains. Fallen Leaves only replies by saying that the tunnels were his home now. The black cat stands up and asks where she should walk and he warns her to only go for a few pawsteps.
- Hollyleaf pushes herself up and feels pain running up her hind leg. She takes a deep breath and heads for the place where the tunnel opened up. Fallen Leaves notes that it is daytime as there is a hole in the roof of the cave. Hollyleaf asks him if he ever goes outside and Fallen Leaves repeats that this is his home now. He then asks her if she could make it back to her nest and Hollyleaf starts back down the tunnel. Her leg is aching now and she is relieved to be back in her nest. As Fallen Leaves turns to leave, Hollyleaf reaches out with one paw and asks for him to stay to talk to her. The ginger-and-white tom tells her to rest and he'll see her again later. As he walks away, Hollyleaf wishes for her leg to get better. She had never imagined a life in the dark, relying on a cat to look after her.
Notes and references
|Hollyleaf's Story chapters|
|Chapter 1 • Chapter 2 • Chapter 3 • Chapter 4 • Chapter 5 • Chapter 6 • Chapter 7 • Chapter 8 • Chapter 9 • Chapter 10|
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