Shadowfate discusses the pro’s and con’s of theories about Graystripe’s parentage
For a long time there has been a great deal of concern in regards of Graystripe’s parents. When the original series of books were written not much thought was given to the parents of the apprentices in the book Into the Wild. After all, they were not the main focus of the story, and the Erin Hunter team probably didn’t’ realize just how popular and big the franchise they were writing was going to become, so it’s very natural that not much thought was given to the issue in the beginning.
Before long fans of the series began to ask the question: Who are the parents of Sandpaw, Dustpaw, Ravenpaw, and Graypaw? The question was somewhat answered on the official Warriorcats website in the form of a family tree chart. On the chart it was stated that Redtail fathered Sandpaw, but no mother was listed, and that Patchpelt and Willowpelt were the parents of Graypaw. Dustpaw and Ravenpaw were not mention. However, this family tree was proven false when Bluestar’s Prophecy came out and disproved a few of the family lines that the tree had established, mainly the claim that Dappletail was the mother of Willowpelt and Spottedleaf when in the book Bluestar’s Prophecy that the mother of Willowpelt and Spottedleaf was a cat named Swiftbreeze.
But this is where things get messy. In 2009, the same year that Bluestar’s Prophecy came out, Vicky Holmes told a fan the parents of those apprentices. Sandpaw was the daughter of Brindleface and Redtail, Ravenpaw and Dustpaw were the sons of Robinwing and Fuzzypelt and that Graypaw was the son of Willowpelt and Patchpelt, which was the same parents Graypaw had been listed under on the family tree, however, it seems that Ms. Holmes overlooked one very important detail. Patchpelt has the same parents as Willowpelt.
So while it is “official” that dear old Graystripe’s parents are indeed full blooded brother and sister, I cannot believe that any of the Hunters would ever purposely make cats so closely related mates. It’s true that in the past they’ve unwittingly paired cats who were related together, but they really have tried to avoid such mistakes. And from a story telling prospective, the whole sibling-mates thing is really weird and awkward.
Fortunately, since it has never been officially stated in any of the books, Graystripe’s parents can still be subjected to change. It would not be the first time that the Hunter Team will have changed cannon. So for fun, why don’t we look at a different tom that very well could be, hypothetically, Graystripe’s father: Whitestorm.
Personally I think Whitestorm would be the perfect candidate to be the father of Graystripe, and here’s why. For starters Willowpelt and Whitestorm are already a confirmed couple, having a litter together. Sorreltail, Rainwhisker and Sootfur are the kits of the pair. It would not be a stretch to say that Whitestorm and Willowpelt got together after the death of Tawnyspots (who, according to the unofficial wiki is the father of her first kit, Darkstripe…) In fact, it’s easier to believe that Willowpelt would have gone from Tawnyspots to Whitestorm, then to assume she would have gotten with her brother, and then Whitestorm.
Secondly, Whitestorm has an established relationship with Graystripe, and the two have several meaningful interactions. Graystripe’s relationship with Whitestorm is very present in the first series, much more than his relationship with his alleged father, Patchpelt, who he doesn’t share any interactions with. Whitestorm has an obvious respect for Graystripe, and the two even share the same eye color and large built bodies. If Whitestorm was the father of Graystripe, it would add even more weight to Whitestorm’s dying scene, in which Whitestorm with his dying breath tells Firestar that Graystripe should be deputy, passing his roll of deputy to his son.
So while Patchpelt is still “officially” the father of Graystripe, in my mind it has always been and will always be, Whitestorm.