Mapledrift discusses One-eye, the ThunderClan elder.
This all started when Cheetahspark challenged me to write 650 words about One-eye, a character who I knew very little about, but here we are, so I hope you enjoy my analysis of One-eye’s character !!
One-eye is an incredibly tragic warriors character, having lost her mother in the Great Hunger and having to be taken in by another family alongside her sister Specklekit. Early into her apprenticeship she was blinded in one eye by a badger, and is actually a success story in this sense as she was able to continue her apprenticeship, under the name of Whitepaw at the time.
This part of her is incredibly curious as she already had a name that was related to her injury before joining the elders den – having the name White-eye. It seems cruel that her name was changed when she became an elder, and perhaps this reflects the fact that ThunderClan, whilst seeming to believe she had entirely recovered after her injury, still held some sort of bias against her. Of course this is typical of ThunderClan who have a bad record of mistreating characters with disabilities even though their clan was partially formed on Thunder’s frustration at Clear Sky’s treatment of disabled warriors. Sunstar appeared to change White-eye’s name after the already blind eye was lost, which feels doubly cruel and out of character for such a leader who is generally considered as one of the kindest leaders of ThunderClan.
Why should her name be changed to fit her injury when she already had a name that was a result of her blinded eye. It appears this name change only happened as a result of her moving to the elders den, which implies that there is some tradition around doing this, leading to big questions about how and when the idea of naming cats after their physical disabilities became normalised in the Clans. With the knowledge we have about characters from the Dawn of the Clans we can safely assume that there is a significant gap between when those leaders died and when the tradition began, as a lot of the themes in that arc were based around Clear Sky’s unjust treatment of cats he viewed as lesser, therefore making it a pointless tradition to create after the conflict these actions caused.
However SkyClan does have a history of biased towards cats with disabilities so it would also make sense that the system of naming cats for their disabilities, more specifically when they go to the elders den would have been founded in that clan. Although we don’t have any examples of cats in other Clans being named in this way, this could be explained by the placement of the Clans. The only border SkyClan would have immediately shared before leaving their territory would have been with ThunderClan, and therefore some customs could be shared. The merging of cultures might also have taken place after SkyClan left the forest and some cats chose to remain in ThunderClan. This theory explains the presence of first series elders such as Greypool of RiverClan who are not named in the same way as ThunderClan elders. So, we can theorise that the unjust naming of White-eye could have been a long term consequence of a SkyClan leader, before Cloudstar but after Clear Sky’s generation had died.
It appears that One-eye’s death was never written, and this implies that she was simply forgotten by the authors, which is frustrating as she could have been an interesting character to use more. With her sister dying as a result of eating a poisoned rabbit, and a lot of her family members dying or drifting apart, I wish we had seen more of the fascinating character who was willing to go and steal fish from RiverClan just to get a taste of it, and continued to be a warrior regardless of her partial blindness. One thing I would like to have seen would have been One-eye acting as a StarClan friend for Jayfeather, as opposed to Spottedleaf. Perhaps if this had happened he would have remained a warrior instead of being forced upon the path of a medicine cat.