HollyleafTheGreat takes a look at Mapleshade’s involvement in the death of her kits.
People empathize with Mapleshade and defend her with the fact that her kits drowned. And not only will I explain that it the death of her kits was her fault, but I will also explain how she did not need to avenge her kits.
Let’s start off by setting the scence (MAJOR spoilers for Mapleshade’s Vengeance): Mapleshade, a ThunderClan cat, is secretly mates with Appledusk, a RiverClan cat. She is pregnant with his kits, and when she gives birth, Frecklewish assumes they’re her brother, Birchface’s, because no living cat claims them and Birchface has died at the paws of Appledusk. Mapleshade doesn’t say anything, and everyone assumes she doesn’t like talking about her dead mate, and that they are Birchface’s. Ravenwing finds out, and tells everyone, and both Oakstar and Frecklewish are understandably upset when they learn that Oakstar’s son and Frecklewish’s brother is not the father, but rather the cat who killed him, which Mapleshade defends by saying it was an accident he died, and tries to say that it doesn’t matter who the father is. She pretends that she’s done nothing wrong, and might have had a chance to stay if she at least pretended she was remorseful, and if it were a recent enough battle, she could have said that she mated with Appledusk in secret, and when he’d killed Birchface, she’d seen his true colors. She could have acted sorry. Once exiled, Mapleshade crosses the stepping stones when the river’s going to flood. I don’t remember if it was raining, or if it were flooding season for the river, but many people say Oakstar would have known, and to that I say so would Mapleshade. There is no reason he’d know and she wouldn’t, but she didn’t care. Second, the stepping stones are not the safest way to cross, and the map shows two perfectly good bridges that she could have used to cross. And that’s no mistake, as she uses a wooden bridge to cross into Fourtrees, and could have used that bridge, noticed the mini-tsunami, and waited for it to pass. But instead she chose to be lazy and take the fastest and most dangerous way, even if there was no flood. Stormkit was about their age when he broke his jaw trying to cross the stones. So when Appledusk tells her he blames her for the death of the kits, he’s right. It was entirely, 100% her fault. And we know that, after their death, Mapleshade was haunted by their cries and kills three people to free them. It seems weird for StarClan to send her to the Dark Forest if she was trying to save her kits, but I don’t think StarClan knew about her visions, nor do I think that she had to free her kits. I think that she was haunted by her grief, and the death of her kits, and when she thought that she had to avenge them, the idea manifested inside her grieving brain. Because she didn’t blame one cat entirely, her mind created the visions to be one kit less with each kill. Her sanity dropped low and StarClan didn’t know (Yes, I believe in the StarClan is Idiots Theory) because they don’t know everything. But I don’t think Mapleshade deserved StarClan. She awoke in the Dark Forest and she felt pleased. Ready to build her army. Not wishing she were in StarClan. My next post will be about 5 cats that people think deserve the Dark Forest but don’t (and one that absolutely does)