Analyzing Characters #3: Appledusk by xxravenshadexx

xxravenshadexx shares their opinion on Appledusk.

Art by senely

Appledusk is a character that I’ve never been too fond of. He was Mapleshade’s mate in the beginning of Mapleshade’s Vengeance, but after the whole thing between them was revealed and the kits died he decided he was more loyal to RiverClan, as well as Reedshine. There are many, MANY things about Appledusk that I dislike, so I’ll go on a rant about him here, while I explain why I believe my feelings are justified.

I am now going to be discussing Appledusk using all the factors I normally do when I make character articles: personality, backstory, actions, and character development.

1. Personality: Appledusk’s personality is a bit hard for me to determine, most likely because I haven’t read Mapleshade’s Vengeance in a while, or maybe because he’s only in that one Novella. However, he seemed to come off as a nice, loving character at the beginning of the book, concerned for the well-being of Mapleshade and their kits, while also being extremely delighted she’d be having them. However, this demeanor is thrown out the window when he decided to blame Mapleshade for the death of their kits, and was shown to be cheating on her with Reedshine. He is shown to be more loyal to his Clan, and care more about his reputation than his love for Mapleshade.

2. Backstory: There’s not a whole lot to say about Appledusk, since his backstory isn’t really mentioned in the series, but I’ll at least talk about the few things that happened in Mapleshade’s Vengeance. He was mates with Mapleshade in secret while having a reputation among his Clanmates for being a strong and loyal warrior. While he was with Mapleshade, he was mates with Reedshine behind her back in RiverClan. When Mapleshade was exiled he attempted to help save their kits but failed, and wanted nothing to do with her, going as far as to blame her for the deaths of the three kits. He was defended by Reedshine, who he stayed mates with when Mapleshade was banished. He was later killed trying to protect Reedshine from Mapleshade, who had returned to avenge her kits.

3. Actions: There are a few major things Appledusk did that I will be discussing here.

-Being mates with Mapleshade: Although he was known as a loyal warrior, he clearly had feelings for Mapleshade, enough to drive him to spend time with her outside his Clan. He is also shown to care for her and the kits, until the incident.

-Cheating on Mapleshade: I really hate the fact he cheats on Mapleshade behind her back. It seems like he loves Reedshine, but he also seems to be wanting to prove to his Clanmates that he’s a loyal warrior. I think it was stupid of him to be mates with Reedshine while he was with Mapleshade, especially since he seemed invested enough in Mapleshade, and she would never have done that to him.

-Refusing to support Mapleshade and blaming her for the kits’ deaths: This part is what really made me hate Appledusk. He blamed Mapleshade wholeheartedly for the deaths of the unfortunate three kits, even though it was honestly partially his fault, simply for being the father, which was the entire reason she was banished. It was also a personal choice for Oakstar, who should’ve known it was against the warrior code to force a queen and her helpless kits to face danger while they can’t support themselves. It was harsh for him to pin the blame completely on her, while knowing quite well she was going through grief as well, and she had every right to try and bring the kits to RiverClan, especially because she had been in shock from her banishment. Telling her he never wanted to see her again was dumb as well, and he shouldn’t of done that to a cat who had put her trust in him completely. The only responsibility he took was for being disloyal to RiverClan, not causing trauma to Mapleshade. It was also annoying to see how blatant he was about the fact that he cheated on Reedshine behind Mapleshade’s back.

My final conclusion:
I really don’t like Appledusk. Although he was shown to genuinely love Mapleshade, he clearly didn’t love her THAT much, as he decided to become mates with Reedshine at the same time, and didn’t care for the grief Mapleshade had felt when their kits died. He saw her as a nuisance at that point, only caring about his reputation in RiverClan. I kind of think he should’ve been exiled as well, and what he did was what caused a deep and agonizing trauma for Mapleshade. Even though he seemed to be a genuinely good mate to Reedshine after that, he was a terrible mate and father to his former mate, and he didn’t deserve Reedshine’s loyalty and commitment. I also think he should’ve gone to the Dark Forest because, while he was loyal to RiverClan and Reedshine above all once Mapleshade left, he caused the whole issue entirely by being mates with her in the first place, and being cruel to her when she was clearly suffering right in front of him. She hadn’t purposely killed their kits, yet he seemed furious with her for that as well as the fact he was exposed to his Clan. He caused deep pain to Mapleshade, and was just as disloyal to her in the situation, even more so if you include the fact he also was mates with Reedshine, and it just proves he can’t be trusted. I really think he honestly deserved a true punishment.

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  • I don’t think Appledusk deserves the Dark Forest. Mapleshade is at just as much fault as Appledusk for the kits, and she was the one who decided to murder cats, not Appledusk. Just because she wasn’t thinking clearly and was going through grief doesn’t excuse the fact that she straight up murdered Ravenwing, Frecklewish, and Appledusk.

    What Appledusk did was minor compared to what Mapleshade did. It’s like saying that someone in real life should go to prison for cheating and someone in real life who intentionally murdered people should get off scot free when someone says that Mapleshade deserved StarClan and Appledusk deserved the Dark Forest. Is Appledusk justified for cheating? No. But does that make him a heartless monster? No.

  • I kind of agree with you.I mean, who knows how Mapleshade would have turn out if Appledusk didn’t cheat on her or blame her for letting their kits die. Maybe if she hadn’t mated with Appledusk she could have been a loyal warrior and not kill anyone but because she mated with him, she broke the Warrior Code.

  • My beliefs on whether Appledusk should go to the Dark Forest or not are a little random
    Personally I think that he should be in StarClan.
    This is a bit of a rare opinion I think, but I believe that Appledusk was very naive. He fell in love with two cats, and thought that the easiest option, not letting either of them down would have no consequences. I don’t think he ever meant to do anything wrong. I believe that he realised his mistake the moment Mapleshade turned up, and suddenly switched and committed to one side. Yes this was completely wrong morally, but with the clan’s code, it would be deemed the right thing to do
    Although he is not a good cat, I don’t think he deserves the Dark Forest. He is naive, and rushes into descions, at least in my mind, and I don’t think he really meant to mess things up the way he did.