|"It's my second day. How am I going to outwit three trained apprentices?"|
|— Tallpaw about a training excerise in Tallstar's Revenge, page 79|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter seven of Tallstar's Revenge. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 7 (of 45)
- Page Numbers: 70-79
- A voice wakes Tallpaw up, and as he blinks his eyes open he sees his mentor at the entrance of the apprentices' den. She meows that she didn't think anyone could sleep longer than Shrewpaw, but the dark brown tom has been up since sunrise. Tallpaw mutters that he's showing off under his breath, and gets up, his legs and pads still sore from yesterday. The younger apprentice wonders why his denmate hadn't woken him up; they were supposed to be training together. Dawnstripe tells him to hurry up before walking away. His nest in his current den isn't as warm or as soft as the one in the nursery. Stagpaw, Ryepaw, and Doepaw all have made nests in the back of the den, and he makes a reminder to collect heather and wool as soon as he can.
- Hareflight tells him to stop dawdling, and the black-and-white tom exits the den to find Shrewpaw pacing near his mentor, while Dawnstripe and Cloudrunner have a conversation. Doepaw and Stagpaw sort through the prey pile, while Ryepaw hauls wool to the elders' den. He realizes everyone has been awake for a while, and hurries to his mentor, complaining that his legs ache. His mentor explains they need exercise before continuing her conversation. He's about to complain, but the golden she-cat cuts him off, saying they'll be better out on the moor. Tallpaw twitches his tail, thinking how Palebird would've fussed over him and how Sandgorse would've said he was turning into a fine warrior. He then wonders where his father is. The apprentice went to his nest after training yesterday, and fell asleep by the time the pale ginger tom's patrol came back.
- Shrewpaw comments that they managed to wake the younger apprentice up, calling him Wormpaw. Tallpaw hisses back an insult; Dawnstripe snaps that only kits name-call and her apprentice argues that Shrewpaw started it. The golden she-cat glances at him sternly while the brown tom says that tattlepaw should go back to the nursery. Before the two can fight Dawnstripe steps in and tells them they're going to help the older apprentices with their final assessment. The black-and-white tom pictures himself being mauled in a mock battle, and asks how. His mentor tells him they need a lure for a tracking exercise, and Shrewpaw asks Cloudrunner if he can help. The gray tom tells him to ask Hareflight. Turning to Dawnstripe, he tells her to meet him at Outlook Rock. She agrees, as she wants her apprentice to warm up first. He protests that he is already warm, but his mentor tells him warming up means stretching his muscles to get rid of yesterday's soreness.
- Expecting a remark from Shrewpaw, he glares at the older apprentice, but Hickorynose blocks his way. Tallpaw greets him, but is ignored. He also spots his father, and calls out to him; however, he is still ignored. Dawnstripe murmurs that he must be thinking of the new tunnel, as Mistmouse said they've reached a tricky place. He stares sadly at the heather and wonders if all the tunnelers are going to treat him differently now that he's a moor runner. Hareflight marches past Shrewpaw and orders them to get going. Tallpaw's mentor races past him and suggests they run to get rid of the stiffness. She ducks through the gap, with Shrewpaw following. The black and white tom wonders if it is possible to race stiffness away, and follows his mentor.
- They emerge onto the smooth grass, and Tallpaw searches for his father, but the pale tabby is already gone. Dawnstripe's tail flashes between bushes, and the tom follows. Zigzagging between the tracks, he narrows his eyes to protect against the oncoming twigs, and wonders if he'll ever know the trails as well as the golden she-cat. She runs gracefully, making each turn easily. Tallpaw feels clumsy as he jerks while turning, trips on roots, and does his best not to fall. The trail suddenly lightens and the heather makes way for an open clearing. Dawnstripe tells her apprentice this is where he'll be doing most of his training. Hareflight and Shrewpaw emerge from the heather, and immediately the tom orders his apprentice to run three laps around the clearing. The tom takes off, and his denmate asks Dawnstripe if he needs to do the same. The she-cat tells him he only has to do it once.
- He sprints after his Clanmate, determined to keep up with the dark tom. His mentor suggests he takes it easy; he's only warming up. The black-and-white tom indignantly thinks that Shrewpaw is too, and speeds up. As he runs, his lungs start to ache and a cramp pains him. Shrewpaw is already halfway back, which means the brown tom is going to lap him before he reaches Dawnstripe. The older apprentice weaves in between Hareflight and Dawnstripe, and darts off. Tallpaw draws in another breath, and hurtles back to his mentor. She chides him for going so fast, as it's not a race, and tells him the best warrior is the one who's still standing after the battle. He shouldn't use up his energy in the first fight.
- Hareflight tells his apprentice to take longer strides, and Dawnstripe orders hers to watch the brown tom, to see how stretches forward each time he leaps off the ground. Nosing Tallpaw to his paws, she tells him that he's fast, but runs not like a hunter, but like prey. As Shrewpaw sweeps past, his mentor compliments his paw-work, and the black-and-white tom watches his older denmate intensely. He then asks the golden she-cat if he can try again. She asks if he's got his breath back, then warns him not to go too fast. The apprentice runs off, not fast, but with each step gaining rhythm and speed. He focuses on each bound, trying to curve his spine just like Shrewpaw did. Suddenly he moves with ease, his paws gliding through the grass. Dawnstripe's voice cuts in, and he realizes he just completed a lap. Both she and Hareflight praise him, and Hareflight's apprentice meows that he's not bad for a tunneler.
- Tallpaw scathingly thinks that he's not a tunneler, and Hareflight suggests they meet up with the others. The tom follows the warrior's gaze, asking if Outlook Rock is there. Dawnstripe tells him he'll see soon, and they head off.
- Outlook Rock juts up above the moor, with the land below it dropping down suddenly and creating a steep valley. The world is spread out below this land, and Tallpaw shrinks back, wondering if a gust of wind will carry him off the rock. His mentor warns him to not look down, but to look out. He does, and the scenery catches his eye before the arrival of the older apprentices distracts him. Cloudrunner approaches with Larksplash, and Aspenfall, and the apprentices. Stagpaw lines up on the rock with Doepaw and Ryepaw, and the trio sit down.
- Cloudrunner assesses Stagpaw on what he can see, prompting the brown tom to list off a red monster, lapwing diving for insects, a Twoleg, and a dog running along a hedgerow. The pale gray tom questions how long it'll take until the dog reaches the border line, and Stagpaw answers enough time for a runner to get a patrol. Cloudrunner praises him, then goes to assess Doepaw, and Tallpaw watches as she looks around, concentrating hard. It's Ryepaw's turn, and she lists off a loner sunning himself, and a heron fishing near a wall.
- A buzzard flies overhead, which catches Tallpaw's attention, but not Ryepaw's, as she stares out into the vast land ahead. He asks Dawnstripe how they don't get distracted, and she says that it's due to their training methods; Larksplash praises the apprentices as she goes on to declare now they'll work on hunting, and Dawnstripe volunteers Tallpaw to be the rabbit in an exercise. Shrewpaw makes a snide remark about him being easy to catch, but Hareflight silences his apprentice by saying that the black-and-white tom is more nimble.
- Tallpaw nervously asks what will happen if Ryepaw, Stagpaw, or Doepaw catches him, and Dawnstripe assures him the older apprentices are only being taught how to pursue, and team work, therefore Aspenfall and Cloudrunner will be watching the training, but out of sight. Cloudrunner tells Tallpaw he needs to make it to the boulder, and as he squints, the young tom makes out a tall rock against the sky. The gray tom suggests switching courses, or using a double-back, to make it hard for the three apprentices to catch him.
- Tallpaw nods, dazed, recalling how last sunrise, he was a kit in the nursery with Palebird, and now he's being used as prey for trained apprentices, and wonders how he'll outwit Stagpaw, Ryepaw, and Doepaw.
References and citations
|Tallstar's Revenge 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 • Chapter 36 • Chapter 37 • Chapter 38 • Chapter 39 • Chapter 40 • Chapter 41 • Chapter 42 • Chapter 43 • Chapter 44 • Chapter 45 • Manga|