|"He'd insisted on forcing his way through to see her. Why? He wasn't the father, he had no right there. And yet, something had made him want to be one of the first cats to meet Turtle Tail's new kits."|
|— Narrator about Gray Wing's recent behavior in Thunder Rising, page 99|
- Below contains in-depth information for chapter eight of Thunder Rising. If you are looking for a shorter summary of the entire book, please check the main article.
- Chapter Number: 8 (of 27)
- Page Numbers: 93-114
- Gray Wing and Thunder are on their way back to the hollow after a session of hunting practice. Gray Wing recalls that when the cats woke up after the dispute on the previous night, they settled into their usual routines without mention of a change of leader again, to his relief. He hopes they had heard the last of the argument, believing it was all so stupid. Tall Shadow had reappeared and was organizing the camp. Gray Wing had intercepted Shattered Ice when he was heading for the tunnel he was digging out with Jackdaw's Cry, apologizing for calling him stupid last night.
- Thunder breaks into his thoughts and says he tried really hard, but he didn't catch anything. Gray Wing admits that he is still having trouble hunting on the moor, saying that his instincts were to hide and to stalk, although there is nowhere to hide on the moor. Thunder fails to catch an injured bird, and the gray tom criticizes him for stalking instead of running. The two cats quarrel briefly. After it, Gray Wing heads back to the hollow. Thunder apologizes for their quarrel, and he reassures him that it takes time to master his own techniques. The ginger tom spots a mouse, and Gray Wing silently praises him, thinking he'll grow into an outstanding cat.
- A cat from the hollow cries that Turtle Tail is having her kits. Gray Wing hurtles down into camp, to the she-cat's tunnel. Rainswept Flower and Jagged Peak stand in the entrance of her tunnel; the former orders everyone to keep back. Gazing past Rainswept Flower, Gray Wing can see Turtle Tail with Cloud Spots and Dappled Pelt and he thinks in relief that they can help her through this. The gray tom wiggles his way through the crowd until he stands in front of Rainswept Flower and Jagged Peak, demanding them to let him through. They say that Turtle Tail needs her space, but Gray Wing pushes past them and enters the tunnel. Rainswept Flower is outraged that he had done so. Cloud Spots says it's okay now, and to say hello to the new kits.
- Gray Wing looks down and is instantly fascinated by the kits as they squirm in the bedding alongside their mother. He remembers seeing Jagged Peak and Fluttering Bird just after they were born, and he feels the same deep connection with the kits. Unsure of himself, Gray Wing takes a step back and tells Turtle Tail he'll leave her in peace. Rainswept Flower and Gray Wing come out of the tunnel, and Rainswept Flower announces Turtle Tail has three healthy kits. Gray Wing pads back to his nest, hearing yowls of approval. He questions his behavior, and why he wanted to be one of the first cats to meet Turtle Tail's kits.
- Gray Wing wakes up in the cave behind the waterfall, and wonders how he got back here. He sees that all the cats are sleeping, and spots Quiet Rain and Dewy Leaf, who is curled around two healthy-looking kits, among them. He could not see any cats who made the journey with him from the mountains. He notices that they all look well fed, as if they did the right thing to leave the mountains. He thinks that he must be dreaming, and wishes it was real.
- A cat meows his name, and he turns towards the sound and sees Stoneteller standing there. She invites him to come with her to her den, the Cave of Pointed Stones. When they arrive, Stoneteller welcomes him, and Gray Wing asks how he got here, with Stoneteller replying they both walk in dreams. She tells him a new life awaits him, and he must turn his paws onto a new path. She says she thinks there is another reason his dream led him into the place set apart for the leaders of the Tribe. Gray Wing protests that Tall Shadow is their leader, with Stoneteller responding who can tell what lies ahead in the seasons to come. She also tells him to be ready and to walk his new path with courage. Gray Wing then wakes in his own nest.
- The next morning, Gray Wing emerges from his nest, guessing that most of the cats were still asleep, as the camp was quiet. He tells himself Tall Shadow is their leader, pushing the disturbing dream to the back of his mind. He spots Thunder emerging from the tunnel he shares with Lightning Tail and Acorn Fur, and the young cat bounds over to him. Thunder asks him if he could see Turtle Tail's kits. Gray Wing says he is not sure, also saying she needs peace and quiet to sleep and get her strength back.
- Cloud Spots appears from Turtle Tail's tunnel, telling him she would love some visitors, and suggests Gray Wing to go hunting and bring a mouse for her. He agrees, and him and Thunder go hunting. With an encouraging nod from the tom, Thunder catches a mouse without any trouble. He asks if they could see Turtle Tail now, and Gray Wing replies to see if they can find something else first. He spots another mouse, and Thunder catches it. He collects the other mouse and the two cats go back to camp.
- They enter Turtle Tail's den. To Gray Wing's surprise, Jagged Peak is sitting beside her, watching her kits keenly. Rainswept Flower is also present, tucking fresh bedding around Turtle Tail and her litter. Gray Wing asks Jagged Peak what he is doing here, and Rainswept Flower replies he is being helpful. Gray Wing says he didn't mean to criticize, and Jagged Peak says that's okay. Rainswept Flower gives a last pat to the moss, and tells Jagged Peak to help her collect some more moss. The two cats then leave the den.
- Gray Wing tells Turtle Tail that they brought her some prey, adding that Thunder caught them. She praises the ginger tom, and thanks them. Thunder drops the mice, and admits he couldn't have done it without Gray Wing. He gazes down at the kits with wonder. As his gaze gradually grows distant, Gray Wing guesses he is remembering his mother, Storm and his littermates. As Turtle Tail eats one of the mice, Gray Wing watches the kits, fascinated by them. Thunder asks if she has given them names yet, and the tortoiseshell she-cat replies she hasn't yet, saying she is waiting until at least their eyes are open.
- Gray Wing watches the three kits nurse, and thinks back to how Turtle Tail had said that they needed a father. His heart flutters excitedly at the thought of helping her bring up her kits. He notices that Turtle Tail still looks exhausted, and says to her that they will let her sleep. Gray Wing and Thunder head out of the den, saying that they will do more hunting.
- A moon passes since the kits were born. Excited squealing wakes up Gray Wing from his sleep. He sees Turtle Tail's kits playing with Jagged Peak. He feels warmth surge through him to see how close his brother is to the kits. Turtle Tail sits at the entrance to her den, keeping an eye on them. Rainswept Flower and Hawk Swoop also observe them from a little farther away. Hawk Swoop tells Lightning Tail and Acorn Fur that they can't play with them yet, as they are too little. On the other side of camp, Tall Shadow is grooming herself in her den, while Shattered Ice and Jackdaw's Cry are on the way out to hunt. Cloud Spots is sorting through a pile of herbs.
- Optimism rises inside of Gray Wing at the sight of daily life continuing peacefully in the camp. He bounds over to Turtle Tail and joins her in watching her kits. While they are talking, the three kits charge back to their mother, and the tortoiseshell tells Gray Wing their names. She named the gray tom kit Owl Eyes, the tabby tom Pebble Heart, and the tortoiseshell Sparrow Fur. Sparrow Fur says that Turtle Tail told them they can go out on the moor today. Gray Wing offers to come with them, adding it might take the two of them to keep them in order. Turtle Tail agrees, and they go to the top of the hollow.
- As the kits scramble over the edge of the hollow, they halt in amazement and gaze around. Pebble Heart exclaims how huge the moor is, adding he didn't know the world was this big. Turtle Tail tells the tabby tom that the world is much bigger than this, and says to remember the story of how the cats in the hollow traveled for days to get here from the mountains. Sparrow Fur asks if they could go see the mountains, and Gray Wing replies they're just exploring around the camp today. As Gray Wing and Turtle Tail stroll through the hollow, the kits run around excitedly.
- Owl Eyes leaps onto a caterpillar and squishes it, and he announces that he can hunt. As Gray Wing enjoys the kits' antics, he feels happier that recent tensions in the camp seemed to have died down. He then recollects the events of the past moon. As he relaxes with Turtle Tail, he picks up the scent of another cat, one who he can't identify. He then sees a flash of white paws, and a cat leaps clumsily out from a clump of gorse.
- Turtle Tail cries Bumble's name in astonishment. Gray Wing stares at the tortoiseshell, wondering what she is doing here. He notices how strained she looks, and wonders if she looks so unhappy now because of how Bumble kept the truth about how the Twolegs would take Turtle Tail's kits away from her. He picks up the smell of dried blood, and looking closer, he spots some scratches on her legs and flanks. Turtle Tail asks who did that to her; after some hesitation, Bumble admits that Tom had been swiping and scratching at her after Turtle Tail left the Twolegplace.
- Bumble asks if she could live with the moor cats, declaring that she doesn't want to live with the Twolegs anymore. The kits excitedly tell her to come live with them, and Turtle Tail hushes them. She tells Bumble that although she had been a good friend to her when she needed one, she has been a kittypet for all of her life, and there was no way she could survive out in the wild. Before Bumble could say something else, Turtle Tail interrupts her and says that she would spend most of days sleeping, adding she would be so vulnerable in the wild.
- Bumble begs them to take her to see Tall Shadow, so she could ask her if she could live with them. Although Gray Wing would have refused, Turtle Tail gives a reluctant nod, and the kits were already racing back to the hollow, the three cats following them. Gray Wing murmurs to Turtle Tail that the black she-cat will not agree, reminding her of how she refused to take in Wind and Gorse. Turtle Tail responds that is why she wants Bumble to ask her, since Tall Shadow is bound to refuse, and then maybe she would understand that she can't live with them, and go back to the Twolegplace.
- Gray Wing nods in agreement, and halts Turtle Tail before they reach the top of the hollow, and comments that she was so kind to Bumble. The tortoiseshell she-cat replies she doesn't have it in her to hold a grudge, adding that he above all cats should know that. Puzzled, Gray Wing asks her what she means, and she stammers that he wasn't exactly pleased when the two cats became friends. Guilt clawing at him, he apologizes to Turtle Tail, and asks how he could make it up to her. Turtle Tail says that he already is, by every day he spends with her kits. Happy, Gray Wing tells her that he will race her back to the hollow.
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 93
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 96
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 97
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 98
- ↑ Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 99
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 100
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 102
- ↑ Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 107
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 110
- ↑ Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 105
- ↑ Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 111
- ↑ Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 108
- ↑ Revealed in Thunder Rising, page 19
|Thunder Rising 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 • Bonus Scene|
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