|"I could never let you go through this alone."|
|— Squirrelflight to Leafpool in Leafpool's Wish, chapter 7|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter seven of Leafpool's Wish. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 7 (of 11)
- Page Numbers: N/A
- Leafpool and Squirrelflight return to the hollow, the former feeling unsteady with exhaustion, having to be supported by her sister for much of the journey. However, she walks into the camp on her own, as she can't take the chance of the other cats noticing how weary and winded she is. She goes to her den to find Whitepaw asleep and Brightheart working beside her. Whitepaw's mother notes Whitepaw's improved condition, then looks closely at Leafpool, commenting on her tired state. Brightheart tells her that she didn't need to journey back overnight. Leafpool drops into her nest, explaining that they didn't want to sleep there, then she tells Brightheart to go have something to eat. Brightheart gives Leafpool a final glance before leaving.
- Leafpool stretches, trying to appear flat, and observes her awkward belly. She tells her unborn kits that StarClan has done what it could for them, and handing them over to Squirrelflight could be the one way they could stay in the Clan. Though if her sister won't take them, they will have to find their own approach. As she smooths her paw over her belly, she thinks about the upcoming events, unsure of what could happen after she gives birth. Leafpool thinks that hunting will be hard while she is still nursing her kits, but she knew she could go hungry for a while. She makes a plan to eat as much fresh-kill before she left, and hopes that none of her Clanmates would be watching her closely.
- By the next sunrise, Whitepaw is complaining about not being allowed out of the den, with Leafpool noting that it was the best sign of her recovery. The medicine cat beckons the apprentice's mother, and asks her if she would not mind her leaving the camp for a while. Brightheart asks if something is wrong, and the she-cat lies that she has to search for a herb that doesn't grow in their territory. Leafpool asks the warrior if she would take care of her duties while she is gone, and her Clanmate accepts, but reminds her to not stay away for too long.
- Later, Firestar questions if StarClan is sure that the Clan needs the herb. Leafpool reassures him, but worries if their ancestors would forgive her for using her gift wrongly. The ginger tom asks how long she will be away, with the medicine cat replying that she might be away for more than a moon. Sandstorm then enters the leader's den, and asks if she has to go away now. Leafpool insists that she has to go now, but promises she will be back as soon as she can.
- As soon as Firestar asks his daughter if she has to go alone, Squirrelflight bursts into the den, and proclaims that she will go with Leafpool. Their parents admit that they would be happier if she was not alone. The leader decides to let her go, only if she would take Squirrelflight with her. The medicine cat thanks her father, and she leaves the den.
- Leafpool asks her sister if she knows why she is leaving, and Squirrelflight nods. The medicine cat then asks if she told Brambleclaw that she is leaving, and the ginger warriors replies yes. Suddenly feeling exhausted by the lies and half-truths, Leafpool murmurs to her sister that she is glad that she is coming with her. The she-cat replies that she could never let her sister go through this alone.
- The two cats leave just before sunhigh. Brambleclaw tries to persuade Squirrelflight to stay one last time, but he fails to do so. They head up to the ridge above the hollow and cross over the ThunderClan border as soon as they could. Leafpool gets an urge to go as far away from her home as she could, and starts to walk faster, in spite of her swollen belly. Squirrelflight asks her why she is hurrying, with her sister looking at her in response.
- Eventually, Leafpool's paws start to ache, causing her to slow down. Squirrelflight does not say anything, but she matches her sister's pace and stays close to her in case the medicine cat would stumble. While they are skirting a thicket of elderberry bushes, the ginger she-cat notices a Twoleg nest, and slips into it. Leafpool decides to study it, and concludes that if Twolegs had ever lived here, it was a long time ago.
- Squirrelflight reappears at the entrance of the Twoleg nest, and suggests that they stay here for the night. Leafpool pads over to it and peers into the den, with the warrior then trotting pass her, and she starts to nose through a pile of old straw. Squirrelflight says that she should give birth to her kits here, but the medicine cat protests, saying that this place is too close to the Clans, since they might be seen or heard. With a sense of panic growing inside of her, Leafpool flees the abandoned den, and her sister follows without trying to argue.
- Eventually, the two cats reach a narrow stream near a place where Twolegs come during greenleaf. The ginger she-cat guesses that the medicine cat would not feel like jumping across, with the latter shaking her head, too breathless to speak. Squirrelflight insists that the she-cat cannot go much further, and says that they will go deeper into the woods. She turns and leads the way down the stream.
- It starts to rain gently at first, but then harder, leaving the she-cats drenched to their skin. Leafpool shivers uncontrollably, the sound of her chattering teeth competing with the raindrops falling around them. Suddenly, Squirrelflight halts, announcing that she smells rabbit. She veers away from the edge of the stream and calls for her sister to follow her, adding that she will not leave Leafpool alone.
- Too tired and uncomfortable to argue, the medicine cat stumbles behind her sister in the ferns, and emerge at a sandy clearing dotted with rabbit burrows. Squirreflight licks her lips in anticipation of the hunt, but Leafpool notices that there is another scent here, stronger than rabbit, albeit half-disguised by the rain. The ginger she-cat gasps that there is a fox here, and whirls around, saying that they need to leave quickly.
- It is too late; the bracken tears apart to reveal not a fox, but a badger. It growls at the cats at the sight of them. Squirrelflight jumps in front of Leafpool, commanding her to wait until it attacks her, then run. The medicine cat crouches down, ready to flee, with her kits squirming in her stomach as if they felt the terror she did. Glaring at the badger, Leafpool feels her lip curl in fury, ready to fight if she could not get away. She then proclaims silently that the badger will not harm her kits.
Notes and references
|Leafpool's Wish chapters|
|Chapter 1 • Chapter 2 • Chapter 3 • Chapter 4 • Chapter 5 • Chapter 6 • Chapter 7 • Chapter 8 • Chapter 9 • Chapter 10 • Chapter 11|
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