|"No! This battle will be fought now, before the memory of my father fades in our hearts. His death must be avenged!"|
|— Mothpelt in Code of the Clans, page 80|
In Code of the Clans, he witnesses his father's, Beechstar's, death. On his father's dying breath, he says he wants Mothpelt to be the leader of SkyClan, as, at that time, it is customary for a Clan leader to select his kin to succeed them. Beechstar tells Mothpelt to lead his Clan well, and to carry on the battle that has been going on into RiverClan territory.
Mothpelt is then blinded by the need to avenge his father's death, and he leads an attack on RiverClan, even though the river is high and dangerous. When Robinwing tries to stop him, Mothpelt insults him and pushes past, trying to cross the river. Leading half of the Clan into the river as well, he is swept against a rock. He clings there, unable to move, while Robinwing calls for Maplewhisker and the remaining cats that chose to stay ashore to rescue Mothpelt and the others. Maplewhisker is chosen to be leader instead, as she was Beechstar's deputy. Robinwing comes to get him with the help of Spiderpelt and Rubblepaw.
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- "He knew she shared his concerns about Mothpelt as a leader. They had shared the nursery with him, trained side by side to become warriors, and seen him struggle to mentor a succession of apprentices."
- —Robinwing's memories and doubts about Mothpelt Code of the Clans, page 77
- "Come on! All those SkyClan cats who wish to avenge our leader's death, follow me!"
- —Mothpelt leading his Clan into the river Code of the Clans, page 80