"Please can we go? I want to be a forest cat. I heard Clear Sky's cats train how to hunt and fight. If we go there, he might teach me to be the strongest fighter in the forest. Then we would never have to be scared again."
— Thistle expressing his desires to go to the forest in A Forest Divided, page 166

Thistle is a broad-shouldered,[10] sleek-furred,[11] ginger tom with green eyes.[12]


In the Dawn of the Clans arc

A Forest Divided

"That's not fair! That was my mother's catch! She was stalking it."
―Thistle when Gray Wing takes Milkweed's catch A Forest Divided, page 112
Thistle is a kit living with his mother, Milkweed, and his sister, Clover. His other sister, Bramble, dies of starvation a day before they all meet Gray Wing.
As Gray Wing starts eating the rabbit he just caught, Thistle comes over to him, and complains that it wasn't fair. Gray Wing notices Thistle approaching him, and the latter complains that it was his mother's catch. Gray Wing apologizes, as he didn't realize that it was his mother's, but Milkweed declines the prey and shoos Thistle away, though Gray Wing insists that they should have it. Milkweed introduces herself and her kits, including Thistle. Gray Wing then nudges the rabbit toward Milkweed and her kits, Thistle drawing forward to the rabbit. After they finish eating, Thistle complains that his belly hurts, and Gray Wing explains that it was due to him not being used to eating so much food.
Thistle pleads to go to Clear Sky's group, having heard of their behavior, and thinks he could be the strongest fighter in the forest. Gray Wing promises that Clear Sky wouldn't hurt them, and Thistle promises to protect his mother as they head off into the forest. Some time after they arrive, Clear Sky wonders where Milkweed and her kits are, noting their frailness upon arrival, and that he found them on the border. Since they remind him of Fluttering Bird and Quiet Rain, he decides to take them in without hesitation. He acknowledges that leaf-bare would last some time, but that it brought him Milkweed, Thistle, and Clover.
Star Flower calls over to Thistle and Clover, prompting for them to race to the prey pile, and Thistle remarks that he knew there was prey. She then explains the rules, and Thistle and Clover huddle near her, excited. Milkweed advises them not to pick the best prey, but Star Flower disagrees with her, telling her that the kits need to eat, as they will be hunters one day too. As soon as Star Flower starts the game, Thistle and Clover speed away, with her after them, and Thistle declares that he got there first. Clover argues that she was closest, and Thistle retorts that it wasn't fair. Star Flower questions if he liked mouse, and Thistle confirms he does, but wants something else. She does not let Thistle finish, and then tells him to help Clover carry the mouse back to Milkweed. Thistle hurries over to Clover, and unhooks the mouse from the root it was in. Clover is grateful, and the two head back to Milkweed with the mouse.
As he walks by, Clear Sky notices Milkweed sharing her mouse with Thistle, and that her kits looked healthier already. Thistle expresses interest in joining the next hunting patrol, but Clear Sky refuses to let him, instead suggesting for him to practice in camp, and asks Birch and Alder to help the kits do so. Thistle is excited, and licks his lips at the opportunity, asking if they could start immediately. When Clear Sky lists off the things Star Flower needed to do in order to make him trust her, he includes that Thistle and Clover should not go hungry.
Thunder watches Birch and Alder train Milkweed's kits, who crouch at the center as they focus on their positions, and Alder advises Thistle to keep his tail down. Once Clover fixes her position, she fails an attempt to pounce, and Thistle comments that it looked like she was trying to swim. Thistle attempts to do so, and is complimented by Birch, being told he will be a good hunter. After a few more attempts, Clover boasts she can jump as far as Thistle, but her brother thinks otherwise. Some time afterwards, Thistle and Clover scramble through branches above where their mother is. When Leaf complains about what little Milkweed has done for the group, Thistle arches his back and hisses.
While Thunder's group settles in their new location, Milkweed, Thistle, and Clover arrive, with the former explaining that Clear Sky wouldn't let them come, against their wishes. As Leaf and Milkweed argue, Thunder tells them to quiet down, and looks at Thistle, who watches with narrowed eyes. Leaf complains about how Milkweed had been coughing since the morning, and Milkweed grabs Thistle by his scruff, despite his protest. Pink Eyes then goes to find the kits a place to sleep, and tells Thistle, who is galloping to catch up. The two kits race toward Cloud Spots, and Thistle expresses a preference to sleep near the edge, so he can listen for foxes. Thistle and Clover then huddle on one side, eyeing Leaf suspiciously. Soon, the two fall asleep, and stop fidgeting beside their mother. As he sees Pink Eyes, he reflects on how he had changed; before, he would scold Birch and Alder for playing, but now he would let Clover and Thistle play nearby. When Thunder encounters the strange cat, he wonders if Thistle and Clover would need the catch. When he returns, Thunder notices Thistle and Clover with their mother.

Path of Stars

"[Thistle and Clover's] training had made them good hunters, always eager to share the duties of their campmates. That morning they had gathered fresh bracken for Pink Eyes's nest and return to the clearing, their pelts dusted with snow and a bundle of stems between their jaws."
―Thunder thinking about Thistle and Clover Path of Stars, page 255
Thistle and Clover, now four moons old, continue to grow up in Thunder's camp. Thunder notes that they are getting bigger every day, and thinks that it might be time for them to start learning how to hunt. When Thunder and Lightning Tail return from hunting, Thistle rushes out from the bramble bush den he shares with his mother and sister to see what the two older toms have caught. Lightning Tail drops his thrush, and Thistle begins to nose through its feathers excitedly. Milkweed calls to the ginger tom-kit to slow down and let other cats that might be hungry eat. Thunder, however, says that Thistle and Clover may eat the thrush and that he'll send out another patrol for more prey.
When Thunder starts organizing the patrol, Thistle asks if he can come. The older cats decline his offer, and Owl Eyes tells him to check the ravine for mice. Thistle protests that he has already checked yesterday, and found no prey. Milkweed points out that not every cat can leave the camp at one time, because then there would be no one left to guard it. Thistle crossly says that his mother is just saying this so that he won't go. Clover, running up to him, says that Milkweed has to make him feel special or else he will sulk all morning. The ginger tom-kit protests that he never sulks, to which his sister points out that he sulked all yesterday afternoon when Milkweed wouldn't let him play in the rain.
Thunder pads between the two arguing kits, and says that he'll take them into the forest after everyone has something to eat, a prospect Thistle is very excited about. Lightning Tail, picking up his thrush, tells the two kits to come over and eat it with him, and that he'll tell them how he caught it. Thistle and Clover rush across the clearing towards him. Lightning Tail demonstrates how he caught the bird while the two kits watch with wide eyes and eat their meal. A few moments later, Thistle and Clover rush over to the camp entrance as they hear stones rattling in the ravine, signaling that someone is entering the camp. Clover exclaims that she can scent Owl Eyes, but Thistle scoffs that she's just guessing and that she can't possibly scent the approaching cats from where she is.
The approaching cat is in fact Owl Eyes, bringing Clear Sky and his patrol into camp to talk with Thunder. As the two group leaders speak, Thistle and Clover push their way into the conversation. The ginger-and-white she-cat asks Acorn Fur if he remembers them, but her brother snorts that she probably doesn't, since they're much more grown up now. The interruption earns the two a scolding from Clear Sky. Milkweed heads over, asking what's going on, and the ginger tom-kit indignantly says that Clear Sky thinks that kits aren't allowed to talk. The black-and-ginger queen, glaring angrily at the gray tom, leads Thistle and Clover away.
When Lightning Tail, Leaf, and Cloud Spots return to camp after an encounter with Slash's cats, Thistle and Clover explain what happen to Thunder. Clover says that the three toms were robbed, her brother adding that the rogues attacked them while they were hunting. After hearing the full details of the attack, Milkweed worries for her kits' safety, but Owl Eyes promises to look after the two. Thistle adds that he'll look after Clover too, to which the ginger-and-white she-kit retorts that she doesn't need looking after. When Lightning Tail suggests that they do battle training to prepare for another attack by Slash's cats, Thistle asks if he can participate, and is excited when he is told that he can. The black tom begins to teach the two kits how to defend themselves, and Leaf notes that both are bright and eager to learn.
Lightning Tail and Leaf continue to train the kits in both hunting moves and battle moves. After another session, Thistle calls to Thunder that the two toms taught him and Clover how to fight in a pair. They demonstrate their skills for the group leader. Lightning Tail and Leaf lunge at the kits, but Thistle and Clover rear up and begin to swipe their forepaws at them. The two toms try to get around them, but every time they move they are met with well-aimed blows. Thunder is happy with Thistle and Clover's progress, and the ginger tom-kit boasts that he and his sister could take on a whole patrol. However, he is still very anxious about the group being attacked by Slash's cats again.
Thistle and Clover offer to help the older cats with the hazel bush den they are constructing, and Cloud Spots tells them to start with the lower section of the wall. However, they immediately get into an argument as they begin tugging at the same piece of bracken. Clover argues that she picked the piece up first, to which Thistle objects that the ginger-and-white kit only did so because he said it look strong. Leaf interrupts the two, telling Clover to let Thistle have his bracken piece and to find another one. Thunder notes that the ginger tom and his sister have begun to hunt and are helping to fill the prey pile, and that they are always eager to fulfill their duties.
On the night of the full moon gathering, Thistle and Clover rush across the clearing, their pelts bristling with excitement. Thistle asks if all the group cats are going to be there, and Thunder replies that most of the will be. He asks if Drizzle and Pine will be coming, and the group leader assures him that they are. Milkweed races across the clearing and begins to lick her son's tufted fur, but Thistle breaks away and scowls. The queen protests that he must look neat, but the ginger kit objects that he's already washed. When it is time to leave, Milkweed's two kits race each other up the side of the ravine, kicking up snow and pushing past each other, and Thistle ends up slipping, but Lightning Tail catches him. Lightning Tail scolds the young tom, and Thistle dips his head, apologizes, and proceeds to climb more slowly up the ledges.

In the Super Editions

Moth Flight's Vision

When Moth Flight visits Cloud Spots in ThunderClan camp, Thistle goes out hunting with Clover and the two catch a fat wood pigeon. They have a hard time getting it down into the ravine, so Thistle throws it over the cliff and they haul it into camp after it lands at the bottom. Moth Flight comments that it was good no cat was standing underneath when the young ginger tom threw the bird down. Sniffing, Thistle replies that any cat that can't hear a pigeon bouncing down the ledges on the cliff needs to have his ears checked.

In the Novellas

Thunderstar's Echo

Thunderstar hears arguing and recognizes Thistle's voice. He is telling his sister, Clover, that he only did what Cloud Spots wanted by gathering the herbs. Shivering Rose is outraged because the siblings brought back the wrong herb, and the ginger tom rolls his eyes. He tells her that no cat is hurt, nor is there an emergency, and asks if she thinks there will be and who it will be with. When the medicine cat apprentice accuses Thistle and Clover of bringing back the wrong type of leave, Thistle defends himself by telling Thunderstar that they look almost the same, and pokes at the leaves with one paw. The two siblings and Shivering Rose begin to argue again, and Thunderstar stops listening.
The leader snaps back into the conversation to hear Clover call her brother as slow as a tortoise. Thistle retorts by mocking her about her bad sense of smell, as it didn't help when they were looking for Cloud Spot's beech leaves. Shivering Rose corrects him, calling him a mouse-brain as she reminds him that they were looking for dock leaves. Clover angrily tells the apprentice not to talk to her brother like that. Thunderstar stops the argument, demanding that the two apologize to the medicine cat and his apprentice for bringing back the wrong leaves. He tells Shivering Rose to bring them into the forest the next day and show them what dock leaves look like.
Later, Thunderstar demands that Thistle come on a hunting patrol with him and a few others because they are extremely low on food. The ginger tabby protests, saying it's horrible outside. After some encouragement, he is seen puffing out his chest proudly. After Owl Eyes is appointed deputy, Thunderstar is recalling memories of Lightning Tail. He mentions the time the black tom was playing with Clover and Thistle when they were kits, and he slipped, sending the whole prey pile flying.

Character pixels

Please do not edit this gallery




Milkweed:[5] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)


Splinter:[blog 1] Living (As of Path of Stars)


Clover:[5] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)
Bramble:[5] Deceased, residence unknown


Shivering Rose:[13] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)
Morning Fire:[13] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)
Beech Tail:[14] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)


Hazel Burrow:[13] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)
Patch Pelt:[14] Living (As of Shadowstar's Life)


Splinter ♂Milkweed ♀Leaf ♂
Thistle ♂Clover ♀Bramble ♀Hazel Burrow ♂Shivering Rose ♀Morning Fire ♀Beech Tail ♀Patch Pelt ♂

    = Male

    = Female

    = Gender Unknown




  • Thistle is not listed in the allegiances of A Forest Divided despite appearing in the book.[15]


"You look like you're trying to swim!"
―Thistle making fun of Clover's failure to pounce correctly A Forest Divided, page 151

"I want to sleep near the edge so I can listen for foxes."
―Thistle noting his preference on where to rest A Forest Divided, page 192

Milkweed: "We need you here, Thistle. If everyone goes hunting, who's going to guard the camp?"
Thistle: "You're just saying that to stop me from going."
Clover: "Of course she is. If she doesn't make you feel special, you'll sulk all morning."
Thistle: "I never sulk!"
Clover: "You sulked all afternoon yesterday because Milkweed wouldn't let you play in the rain."
Thistle: "It was only rain!"
—Milkweed, Thistle, and Clover after Thistle isn't allowed to join a hunting patrol Path of Stars, pages 18-19

External links

Notes and references

  1. Revealed in Path of Stars, pages 304-305
  2. Revealed in A Forest Divided, page 115
  3. Revealed in A Forest Divided, page 137
  4. Revealed in A Forest Divided, page 187
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Revealed in A Forest Divided, page 114
  6. Revealed in Moth Flight's Vision, page 228
  7. Revealed in Thunderstar's Echo, allegiances
  8. Revealed in Shadowstar's Life, allegiances
  9. Revealed in Shadowstar's Life, chapter 6
  10. Revealed in A Forest Divided, page 139
  11. Revealed in A Forest Divided, page 142
  12. Revealed in Moth Flight's Vision, allegiances
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Revealed in Moth Flight's Vision, page 223
  14. 14.0 14.1 Revealed in Thunderstar's Echo, chapter 1
  15. Revealed in A Forest Divided, allegiances

Author references


  1. While not directly referred to as a warrior, hunters are repeatedly referred to as such throughout the novella.[9]
Logo-thunderclan.png Ancient ThunderClan cats
Leader Thunderstar
Deputy Owl Eyes
Medicine cat Cloud Spots (Shivering Rose)
Warriors (Hunters) Violet DawnPink EyesLeafMilkweedCloverThistleGooseberryYew TailApple BlossomSnail ShellBlue Whisker
Apprentices Hazel BurrowMorning FireShivering Rose
Queens N/A
Kits Patch PeltBeech Tail
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