|"I promise I will be guided by the warrior code, and most of all, by StarClan's wish that there should be four clans. If that means sharing our fresh-kill, so be it. We will do what we have to in order to survive-just as we have always done."|
|— Firestar to the Gathering in The Clans Decide, page 14|
The Clans Decide, also called The Ultimate Leader Election, is a short story that depicts Firestar and what would happen if he became the leader of the Clans for a short time. It takes place sometime between Long Shadows and The Fourth Apprentice during leaf-bare.
- The story begins with Firestar finding two injured RiverClan warriors, Pouncetail and Otterheart, on the ThunderClan-ShadowClan border, barely alive, being chased by a ShadowClan patrol for trespassing on their territory. Firestar takes them to the ThunderClan camp, where they are treated by Leafpool.
- He calls a Gathering, and asks the Clans to share the leftovers from their fresh-kill piles. He is challenged by many cats, including Tornear, who says if they can catch prey by crossing the borders, then they'll do it, but it's not the other Clan's problem that ThunderClan can't protect their territory.
- Firestar decides to leave, when Mosspelt comes to him and tells him to come back. Firestar hesitantly comes back and sees Blackclaw and Tornear fighting. He interrupts, and just then Otterheart notices the stars and tells the Clans that StarClan have come and that they approve of this Gathering. The cats start arguing again, when Jayfeather interrupts, saying that they could have a vote and each cat could decide their own future. He explains that each cat has a chance to put a stone in a pile. One pile for cats who support Firestar, and one pile for cats who support being led by individual leaders. He puts a stick on the ground and tells them that cats supporting Firestar may put their stones on one side of the stick, and the cats supporting individual leaders on the other side. Blackstar starts the voting, voting for individual leaders, and the rest of ShadowClan does the same, until Rowanclaw reaches the stick. He votes for Firestar, and Snowbird and Tawnypelt do the same.
- From RiverClan, Mistyfoot, Otterheart, Mosspelt and Pouncetail vote unsurprisingly for Firestar, while other unexpected supporters are Mintfur and Reedwhisker, who tells Firestar that he had saved his life, back in the flood, and he believed Firestar could do it again. Leopardstar sadly puts her stone on the other side of the pile, asking her Clan if they had thanked her like this for all the moons she had been their leader, to which Mistyfoot exclaims that she has done nothing wrong, but the rest of RiverClan want peace, to give them a chance to recover. Leopardstar replies that they would have to prove that they could be loyal to two leaders.
- From WindClan, Onestar votes for Firestar, saying that if Firestar could show them a way to survive without prey stealing, he would listen for the sake of old times. Tornear, Nightcloud and Ashfoot vote for individual leaders, Ashfoot saying that she has faith in Onestar to lead them through the harsh leaf-bare.
- From ThunderClan, Sandstorm, Squirrelflight, and Brambleclaw vote for Firestar, and Dustpelt, Thornclaw, Cloudtail, and Brightheart vote for individual leaders, with Dustpelt remarking that Firestar is the leader of ThunderClan, not the other Clans.
- Jayfeather, Barkface, Littlecloud, and Mothwing lay out the stones in two lines, and Firestar's line stretches just longer. He thanks them, and tells the cats that they will meet at every quarter moon to share leftover prey, and if they didn't take exactly what they needed, or if they saved the leftover fresh kill for their own Clanmates, StarClan would be their judge, and when the first green bud would appear on the ThunderClan trees, the Clans would have four leaders again.
Notes and references
- Revealed in the PDF file of The Clans Decide, 'properties'.
- Information from Wikipedia
- This is apparent from the fact that Jayfeather has already received his full medicine cat name
- It is posted off the Warriors site since it was removed from the official site. If any copyright issues arise, it will be taken down.