Crowfeather’s Kin: An Analysis by Viperfrost

Viperfrost dives into Crowfeather’s family throughout the series. Spoilers for AVOS and Crowfeather’s Trial!

Art by Rae-elic


It’s Viperfrost again, with another article! 😊 In Crowfeather’s Trial, at one point Crowfeather has to visit his son Jayfeather. He notes that he, Jayfeather, and Breezepelt all look similar when they are angry. He also notes at a different time that personality traits can be passed through the blood just like fur or eye color. Where he got that idea, I am not certain, but let’s check it out. Today I’ll be analyzing the kithoods, apprenticeships, and warrior/meddie-cat experiences and personality traits of Crowfeather, Jayfeather, and Breezepelt, to see if they are as similar as Crowfeather seems to think. I’ll be trying to stay objective, so please don’t start comment wars over whether or not you love/hate Crowfeather, Jayfeather, and/or Breezepelt.

As Kits:
1. We don’t see much of Crowkit’s time as a nursey dweller. However, in “A Clan in Need” (Ravenpaw’s Path), we see that Crowkit is trying to climb the Great Rock at Fourtrees, to see what it’s like to be a leader. When Ravenpaw tells him that his clan must miss him, Crowkit says that they don’t pay very much attention to him anyway. As a kit, Crowfeather may have felt neglected. However, it is shown during Crowfeather’s Trial that he had a very close relationship with his mother, Ashfoot, and felt her loss. It is also said in the same SE that his father, Deadfoot, was not around very much when he was young; perhaps that is the lack of attention he is referring to.
2. It is noted that Breezekit had an illness (greencough, I think?) that confined him to the nursery for a month. This may have caused him to feel angry over not being able to do the same things as others his age, or being weaker than them. Breezekit had a great relationship with his mother, Nightcloud, because she gave him a lot of attention to make up for Crowfeather’s absence.
3. It’s been a while since I read The Sight, but from what I recall Jaykit was angry that his blindness prevented him from doing things that others could, and also that others tried to coddle him over it. Perhaps he and Breezekit were similar in this regard. Jaykit, like his father and half-brother, had a great relationship with his “mother”, Squirrelflight, the difference being that he also had a great relationship with his “father”, Brambleclaw.
4. Summary: All of them faced trials as kits; Breezekit and Jaykit faced emotional problems stemming from physical limitations, while Crowkit faced emotional problems stemming from possible perceived neglect. All of them had positive relationships with the she-cats that raised them, though Jaykit also had a positive relationship with his father figure.

As Apprentices:
1. Crowpaw is well known for being a member of the six cats that journeyed to the sun-drown place. As an apprentice, Crowpaw was moody, irritable, snappish, and easily angered. He thought that the others were judging him for being only an apprentice, and he didn’t want others making decisions for him without his input.
2. Breezepaw was also sullen and angry during his apprencticeship. He felt that his father was neglecting him, and was jealous of Lionpaw, Jaypaw, and Hollypaw for having such a great father (Brambleclaw). From his perspective, his father who never thought anything he did was good enough was in sharp contrast to his mother who praised his every pawstep. On a side note, I’m betting that the whole “Crowfeather complimenting Lionpaw and blowing off Breezepaw over the prey” hurt more after Breezepaw found out that Crowfeather was their father, because then from his perspective it would seem like Lionpaw got the love of his foster father AND his real father, while Breezepaw received nothing.
3. Jaypaw was hostile and surly during his apprenticeship, because he felt that everycat was underestimating him because of his blindness. He was insulted that he was apprenticed to Brightheart, the half-blind warrior, merely because they had a similar “problem”. His overall mood worsened when he was forced to switch to a medicine cat apprentice, when he really wanted to be a great warrior.
4. Summary: All three of them were grouchy, unfriendly apprentices because they felt they were undervalued. It should also be noted that they all strived for greatness and wanted approval from others.

As Warriors/Medcats:
1. Crowfeather became bitter and sullen as a warrior, after the loss of Feathertail, his first love. He fell in love with Leafpool, and they ran away together. He became more bitter after she returned to Thunderclan, feeling that he was destined not to have love or something like that. As a warrior, he was argumentative, especially with his leader/uncle Onestar (which makes Darktail the cousin of Crowfeather!), and quick-tempered in terms of personality. He also took a third mate, Nightcloud, though he didn’t actually love her and just wanted to prove himself to Windclan. Eventually, he and Nightcloud broke up. In Crowfeather’s SE, he and Nightcloud finally reach a comfortable friendship where they aren’t snapping at each other all the time, and he works to improve his relationship with his son Breezepelt.
2. Breezepelt didn’t really change all that much from an apprentice to a warrior at first, possibly because his mother (I’m not judging her, as she thought she was helping him) tried to shield him from conflict that might have developed his character more, such as defending himself in arguments. Breezepelt still felt unloved and unwanted by his father, making him bitter. He joined the Dark Forest to become a better warrior and take revenge, under the apprenticeship of Brokenstar. Like his father, he remained short-fused and easily provoked. He sought approval from the Dark Forest, since he had given up on gaining his father’s approval. This all culminated in the Final Battle, where he was the only DF cat to remain on the side of the DF, even as the battle neared its end. He tried to kill his half-brother Lionblaze, and was angered by his father who stopped him, which reinforced Breezepelt’s idea that Crowfeather preferred his half-clan kits over his Windclan kit. Their relationship improved a lot in Crowfeather’s Trial, though Breezepelt’s emotional wounds don’t seem to be fully healed. Breezepelt did seem to find happiness with Heathertail, though, and now has two daughters, Smokehaze and Brindlewing.
3. Jayfeather became a quick-tempered and grumpy medicine cat. At one point, he fell in love with Half Moon, the first Teller of the Pointed Stones, and was heartbroken that they could never be together. As one of the Three, he faced a lot of character development, and eventually ended up as a grumpy but wise and experienced medicine cat, though he showed a trace of his old short-sightedness in Crowfeather’s Trial, when he at first refused to give him the herbs, and got into an argument (used loosely, mostly just Jayfeather yelling) with Crowfeather over Breezepelt’s actions during the Final Battle.
4. Summary: As adult cats, all three of them had short tempers and sharp words. They also all fell in love with cats that were kind to them but had an inner fire that was rarely revealed (I’m listing Heathertail as having these traits based on her behavior during Crowfeather’s Trial toward Breezepelt, though she often snapped at him earlier in the series during her “involvement” with Lionblaze). However, all three of them faced different trials (couldn’t resist 😊 ) as adults that shaped their distinct personalities.

As you can see, there is a lot of evidence in favor of Crowfeather’s claim. What do you think?

Bonus Questions:
1. We find out at the end of Crowfeather’s Trial that Heathertail is expecting kits, who later turn out to be Smokehaze and Brindlewing. We don’t see any of their development, since the book ends there, and they are only seen a couple times afterward, at Gatherings. Do you think that Crowfeather, after learning from his many mistakes, was a better grandfather to them than he was a father to his own kits?
2. Do you think that Crowfeather’s patched up, friendly relationship with Nightcloud and Breezepelt is going to last?
3. How do you think Crowfeather will fare as Crowstar? Or do you think he’ll pass away before that happens, since he’s rather old and Harestar has nine lives to go?
4. Whether Crowfeather or Harestar passes away permanently first, Windclan will need a good deputy. Who do you think could make the cut?

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