[a simple design of Berryheart sitting down]

Berryheart’s Issues and How She Can Fix Them by Rosefern

Rosefern takes a closer look at Berryheart.

[a simple design of Berryheart sitting down]
Art by theDawnmist
[a simple design of Berryheart sitting down]

Yo what’s up, Kitties? It’s me, Rosefern, and I am here to discuss something that’s been on my mind lately. You may have just read Shadow, and are still trying to figure everything out. You may have been like me, keeping your eye on the date it would come out since February (Like me) and read it a few days after—or even on (Which I did) the day it came out. Or you might be a new reader, who hasn’t read past TPB, or Power Of Three or another series before A Starless Clan, in which case I strongly encourage you to take a pass on this one, because it contains spoilers for A Starless Clan, and also a little of A Vision Of Shadows.
Her name is Berryheart. She’s a ShadowClan cat. Her parents are Snowbird and Scorchfur, and her littermates are Cloverfoot and Rippletail (AKA Buster). Her mate is Sparrowtail and her kits are Needletail, Hollowspring, Spireclaw, Sunbeam and also maybe Beenose…Oh wait no she’s Snowbird’s kit…Anyways that’s not the point. If you’ve read Tigerheart’s Shadow, especially, she and may seem like just an innocent character… well, she was…Back then.
You see, Berryheart was one of the few cats who voluntarily joined the Kin before they forcefully took over ShadowClan. Once she realized how evil Darktail was, she tried to run away, but Darktail attempted to drown her. Thankfully, she got away by playing dead then swimming towards the far bank. Cold, battered and tired she collapsed on the opposite side, and vowed to never let her Clan be tricked like that again.
She found her way home with the help of Tigerheart, Dovewing, Slatefur (NOT Rippletail that was a mistake on the Erins’ part), and had three kits, Sunkit, Hollowkit, and Spirekit. When she got home she pretty much led a normal life—as normal as it gets when Ashfur is terrorizing the Clans, but my point is she was basically a side character without many of her own issues in TBC, but then ASC came along, and she was anything but innocent and trouble-free.
THE whole Berryheart-in-A-Starless-Clan mess started when a SkyClan she-cat, Fringewhisker, joined ShadowClan to be with her love interest who just happened to be Berryheart’s own son, Spireclaw.
Having high expectations for her kits, and not wanting them to be tricked like she and her first daughter Needletail did all those moons ago, she was not happy about this. Then, there was Nightheart, who came wanting to be with Sunbeam. So, apparently a lot of cats like Berryheart’s kits, and Berryheart was proud of this, but she would rather have her kits mate with ShadowClan cats.
Now, with most of the summary bit out of the way I’ll get to explaining each of her issues, and what she can do to fix them.
Issue #1: trying to control her kits.
Ok so Berryheart “has mates in mind” for her kits. That’s her assuming they would be good together. What about Sunbeam, she didn’t seem to want to be with Blazefire anymore, but does Berryheart care? Maybe?… She just thinks he’s perfect for her , although they have about zero in common, and if one argument will split them forever… Sunbeam doesn’t belong with him. Can’t she see that Nightheart is just perfect for her? They have a lot in common and we see them bond and stick with eachother way longer than with Blazefire. But of course Berryheart doesn’t care because she wants her kit to be this perfect, soul ShadowClan cat, who’s perfectly fine there. Can she not see Sunbeam is feeling out of place partly because of her?!
How she can fix this:
Sunbeam and Berryheart could talk to each other and figure out a compromise, Sunbeam can talk to Nightheart as long as she…. stays in ShadowClan maybe? i’d rather that happen, because this is just turning into a nother Twigbranch and Finleap situation, and I do not want that. No, I don’t. I’d rather Sunbeam stay in ShadowClan. Or she could just outright give in that Sunbeam can be with whoever she wants. My point is, just sit and talk and Berryheart, don’t be too harsh on your daughter she’s been through enough, and they can calmly talk it out together, figure out something between them. Same thing with Spireclaw, about Fringewhisker.
Issue #2: She’s determined to make the “clan-swappers” cats who moved to ShadowClan, unworthy.
Ok so I get the challenges are supposed to test a cat’s loyalty, but Berryheart just takes it way too far. She made Fringewhisker and Nightheart do things that were downright dangerous, like making it out of a dark, shadowy cave (Fringewhibbker) all by herself without any help. Does she realize there’s a real chance Fringewhisker could DIE in their? Or could get lost forever? Also, she blamed Fringewhibbker for bringing greencough from SkyClan to ShadowClan (I might add that that isn’t unlikely because greencough spreads fast) and instead of thinking “Oh, this is probably true, but greencough spreads fast it’s not her fault” give her the benefit of the doubt of course she says “This cat needs to be exiled”. Also, she LITERALLY had one of her minions tell Fringewhisker she could give prey to SkyClan, just so that she would have another reason to say “This cat needs to be exiled”. I won’t even get into detail about how she treats Nightheart because it’s redundant but let’s just say she takes testing the new cats’ loyalties WAAAYYY too far.
How she can fix it:
Berryheart should give cats a chance. I know i may sound blunt, I know the frustration of people simply telling me to “stop it” like it’s so plain and simple so I’ll lay it out. Berryheart’s paranoid, that’s what she is, and she has good reason to be. First, imagine “stop”. This is my first step to any coping strategy. Next, take a deep breath. Then tell herself that this is not Darktail and that she’ll give them a chance, and as soon as they show serious signs of disloyalty (not like perhaps accidentally spreading greencough) she’ll cross that river when she comes to it. And at least she’ll be more prepared this time.
Random sidenote: i’d like there to be some sort of therapist cat that comes up in the books.
OK, those are her two major issues, now I’ll go on to explain…
Berryheart’s good traits:
She questioned TigerstarII about taking over RiverClan. This is how her being cautious comes to good use.
It seems as if she tries to be nice about her concerns to her kits, although she doesn’t really succeed much.
She has a lot of potential as an awesome cat!
How I’d like her to go on:
As I said, it’d be nice if Berryheart realized her mistake, like Sparkpelt so recently did, and had a heart-to-heart with her daughter and appologized, and they talked about it, a good sad scene (I almost cried twice at the end of Shadow, the first time being when Nightheart and Sparkpelt had that talk, the second time being right at the end). It would also be just cool if Berryheart got worse and became a villain.
Ok, peeps, that’s it from me today, I hope y’all enjoyed my article and I’ll be back with another one real soon!

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