Grief vs Entitlement: Why Ashfur was WORSE than Mapleshade! by HollyleafTheGreat

HollyleafTheGreat compares Ashfur and Mapleshade.

Art by ShidatheUmbreon

Okay, I know the title sounds unbelievable and you all wanna rush to the comments, but please read the article first. I think I have a case.

First off, I don’t think Mapleshade was in the right. She wasn’t. I have written an article on why it’s her fault that she lost her kits. But I think Ashfur might have been MORE evil while he was alive.

Second, I haven’t read far into AVoS, so please don’t bring up The Impostor from Broken Code or any spoilers because I haven’t read that yet :p

So here’s my case, in TL;DR form: Ashfur was more evil than Mapleshade because of how easily he was pushed to near murder.
For a quick recap (Spoilers for Mapleshade’s Vengeance, The New Prophecy, and The Power of Three), Mapleshade had kits with Appledusk, and allowed her Clan to come to the (reasonable) conclusion that Birchface, a warrior that was killed by Appledusk and was Oakstar’s son, was the father. When they found out, Frecklewish and Oakstar were the angriest as their kin was used to cover up Mapleshade’s code-breaking. The rest of the Clan was upset too, as Mapleshade the real father had killed their Clanmate. And Mapleshade defended him! Exiled, Mapleshade took her kits to the stepping stones, the most dangerous way to cross the river, and they drowned. Appledusk was exposed, and he said that Mapleshade and her kits were a mistake in front of her. She was not allowed to stay in RiverClan, and her kits weren’t buried with RiverClan’s own. Disrespected and heartbroken, Mapleshade ran away to the barn. At night, she was haunted by the death of her kits. Her grief-induced delusions made Mapleshade believe she needed to kill. She killed Ravenwing for telling her secret, Frecklewish for not being able to swim and thinking the present RiverClan patrol had it under control, and therefore didn’t jump in the river to help save the kits and Mapleshade, and Appledusk when he protected pregnant Reedshine. She was sent to the Dark Forest and was pleased. Mapleshade was at-fault but I can understand why people sympathize with her since she went through a lot of hurt.

Onto Ashfur: what hurt did he face? A simple “I don’t feel the same, I like someone else. I’m sorry.” Squirrelflight didn’t love him back. And that happens. She doesn’t belong to him. He had no reason to think he was ever entitled to her affection. And when she chose Brambleclaw and later had Holly, Lion and Jay, he still couldn’t get over himself. When she first said no, shortly after we see Hawkfrost has trapped Firestar. We learn later that this was with Ashfur’s help. Firestar lost a life. This seems like an impulsive decision made while he was hurt (albeit not hurt badly), but the iconic Fire Scene gets me. It has been seasons. And he’s still bitter and angry about a rejection.

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    • If you’re thinking what I’m thinking (which you don’t know what I’m thinking but hopefully you know) then I agree.

    • Hi Osprey! I totally forgot where we were talking about doing a colab. Was it in the fan article comments? Anyways, what is a secret page persay?

      • I’m not Ospreymist, but I can tell you that a secret page is a secret page (super helpful, I know) that you cannot access by clicking on any links directly embedded in BlogClan (at least, I think that’s how Emberdawn explained it to me). Here’s a tip from me: the best way to find a secret page is to search Google random keywords with ‘blogclan’ in front of it, like ‘blogclan fire’ or something like that. And you can claim a page if the last comment is one year ago or earlier.

  • i believe that mapleshade was more evil when alive, but ashfur was more evil when he was dead. great article!

  • No matter how many articles come out about how Ashfur sucks, no one can change my mind about him being my favorite character.

  • When it comes to crimes, Mapleshade is worse.
    When it comes to why they etempted murder, Ashfur is worse.

  • Mapleshade was more cruel and merciless and Ashfur was a mess of emotions, but in my opinion he was a more awful and less likable person in general. Mapleshade also was selfish, she was horribly jealous and desperately naive (I don’t think she was actually DUMB, like some people say. She was naive. Actually she saw what happened around her, she just tried to close her eyes and convince herself to see a “better”, fairytale world). I feel like maybe something was wrong with her childhood, like she came out to be sort of another Raggedstar (at the point when she didn’t murder people)? Yet, if her life didn’t turn around this way, maybe if she got help and a REAL happy life before it was too late, if somebody taught her real love, maybe she’d turn around to be better, both not evil and less selfish. She absolutely WASN’T justifiable, but she became a villain because her life fell apart – partly because of her, partly because of others, you know. I don’t think she was awful like she was, just born like that.
    Ashfur, unlike Mapleshade, didn’t have this tragedy in his life. His life was actually pretty decent. He was an orphan, but we saw him, he moved on. It was nothing but his own toxicity and entitlement which led to his downfall. Squirrelflight was more than ready to discuss things calmly and remain friends – he refused. He was also babying her and she hated it, beyond Brambleclaw this is one of the reasons why they didn’t get together. He had friends, family, a lot of people willing to help. It was basically ONLY his flaws that had him become evil. Mapleshade wasn’t a fine person from the start of her novella, but at the very least there was grief and other cats involved. I can’t bother myself to like Ashfur, he was just mad because a girl didn’t want a romance. Maple has done worse things (mainly because unlike Ashfur she GOT to, and he failed), but Ashfur had more evil reasons, he just wanted to hurt a certain cat who had wounded his heart, but mainly his pride. Now that’s awful.

  • Both of them have done cruel things, and I don’t think anybody can possibly be ‘entitled to murder’, but Mapleshade’s intentions are clearer after I read this article! Nice article! (btw I’ve never read Mapleshade’s Vengeance, so I didn’t really know what Mapleshade did.)

  • Great article I thought they were evened out but now I see Ashfur is worse. Great reasoning by the way.

  • Both are cats you love to hate. I think Ashfur could have been utilized to make more books before he was killed off, but I definitely think that in life and death, he was more evil than Mapleshade. He gives SERIOUS Frollo vibes, man.