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Runningwind

"Runningwind is a fine hunter and a loyal warrior, but I don't think he has the patience for mentoring. ThunderClan has better use for his skills."

— Bluestar talking about Runningwind in Fire and Ice, page 94

Runningwind

Clan(s)
Highest Rank
Warrior
Parents
Litter-Mate(s)
Mate(s)
Children
Mentor(s)
Apprentice(s)
No information
Previous Name(s)
Runningkit, Runningpaw

Runningwind is a light[1] brown[2] tabby tom.[3]

Kit

Runningkit and his sister, Mousekit, are born to White-eye and Sparrowpelt two-and-a-half moons prior to Bluefur's kitting.

As Bluefur kits, his mother tugs him back by his tail, and tucks him in his nest beside his sibling. Half a moon later, Runningkit and Mousekit, said to be three moons older than Bluefur's kits, tease them as they flick lumps of snow then appearing innocent upon being complained of.

The following night, Bluefur makes sure she doesn't disturb White-eye or her kits. She then tells her kits to hush, looking anxiously at White-eye's and her kits' nest, where Runningkit fidgets in his sleep. In response, Bluefur wraps her tail around her kits, until Runningkit is still.

As she brings them to RiverClan, Stonekit asks if their father was Thrushpelt, as Runningkit informed him that White-eye said he was their father. Once Bluefur returns, she makes sure Runningkit, Mousekit, and White-eye are still asleep.

Warrior

When Runningwind pokes his head out of the warriors den as his Clanmates return home from a Gathering, he notices how upset they are and inquires what the cause of distraught is. He is told that ShadowClan has asked for rights to hunt on ThunderClan land.

After Frostfur's litter is stolen, he is one of the cats who is on the patrol that goes to ShadowClan to bring them back. He is mentioned saying that the task would not be easy but Ashfur says that there is little resistance.

In the process of rescuing the kits, he helps drive out Brokenstar and his followers. He gets clawed badly in the battle as he takes on two unnamed ginger warriors. When offered help, he claims he does not need help and manages to continue to fight off the invaders at the end of the battle.

After a Gathering, Bluestar assigns Runningwind and Dustpaw to a dawn patrol.

The following morning, Whitestorm and Sandpaw accompany them on the dawn patrol. When Fireheart and Graystripe nearly crash into them, Runningwind hisses into Sandpaw's ear that they are going to fetch WindClan after she sneers at them, and Sandpaw's taunts grow into silent curiosity and awe.

When Bluestar chooses Fireheart and Graystripe to be mentors of Frostfur's kits, Tigerclaw disagrees, suggesting Runningwind instead of them. Bluestar replies that while he is a good warrior, he does not yet have the patience to mentor an apprentice.

Graystripe catches a cold and Runningwind is assigned to help train Brackenpaw. He and Fireheart take their apprentices out and begin to show them the different hunting techniques. When Fireheart leaves early saying he is not feeling good, Runningwind comments that he does look off. Runningwind calls out a greeting to Fireheart when he is sharing tongues with Graystripe, but Fireheart just ignores him.

Along with the majority of ThunderClan, he has doubts that Cloudkit, Fireheart's kittypet nephew, could ever become a warrior. He says that the Clan has enough to worry about without another kittypet. He complains that the fluffy tom will eat all of the fresh-kill until the next snowfall and then die from the cold.

Runningwind joins in a meal with Graystripe asking if he had a good hunt. When Fireheart asks if he was going to the next Gathering, he eagerly replies that he is. He later comes back from a patrol on the RiverClan border with Willowpelt, Darkstripe, and Dustpaw. When Whitestorm's patrol returns with rabbit bones covered in ShadowClan scent, Tigerclaw orders Runningwind, Darkstripe, Willowpelt, and Mousefur to come with him on raiding patrol and they leave before Bluestar returns.

However, the patrol is stopped by Brackenpaw, who tells them that the ShadowClan cats are Brokenstar and his rogues. He and Mousefur exchange a glance when they hear that Yellowfang is tending to the former leader's wounds.

One morning, he and Tigerclaw emerge from the warriors' den for the dawn patrol when Onewhisker comes to their camp, saying that WindClan is under attack by ShadowClan and RiverClan. He joins Tigerclaw's patrol, and they go to WindClan territory. They join the battle a few moments after the first ThunderClan patrol enters the battle.

He yowls for help when Nightstar, ShadowClan's leader, has him pinned down. Fireheart dashes over to him and together they fight Nightstar until he is beaten. Afterwards, Runningwind congratulates Fireheart, and promises to tell Bluestar about how well he fought.

When Fireheart asks who is ready for a patrol, Runningwind volunteers, along with Graystripe and Sandstorm. He remarks that Whitestorm and Mousefur are foolish to take all of the apprentices out at once. They patrol the RiverClan border, and when Graystripe comments that RiverClan would not be hunting their prey, Runningwind retorts that he would not put anything past them, and that they would steal the fur off their backs if they let them. When they see that the river has thawed and flooded, Runningwind announces with satisfaction that this will keep them from coming to ThunderClan.

During an invasion from ShadowClan and WindClan, he, Willowpelt, and Sandstorm fall back to guard the nursery as the enemy warriors break into their camp. Just before Cloudkit's apprentice ceremony, he listens as Willowpelt announces that she will be having kits soon. He murmurs a congratulations as Mousefur gives her friend a friendly lick on her ear.

After Tigerclaw's treachery has been revealed and he is exiled, Runningwind wonders, whilst talking to himself, about who the new deputy will be.

As Fireheart struggles to assign patrols for the day, Runningwind awkwardly tells him that Longtail is training with Swiftpaw and could not lead the sunhigh patrol. Fireheart then assigns Runningwind to lead it along with Dustpelt and Darkstripe.

When the patrol returns, he tells Fireheart that they scented Cloudpaw near Twolegplace. Not long after this, he leads Thornpaw out of camp when Fireheart stops him. He tells him that he promised Mousefur that he would teach Thornpaw how to catch squirrels. Fireheart reluctantly lets them go out, though he wants to search for Cloudpaw.

The next morning, an unenthusiastic Runningwind takes Cloudpaw out for hunting at Fireheart's order. Later, he hunts down Fireheart and asks if he has seen Cloudpaw anywhere. When Fireheart responds that he has not, Runningwind angrily tells him that he told Cloudpaw to wait while he washed, but when he had finished, the apprentice had disappeared. He is exasperated when Cloudpaw returns from hunting by himself and watches from the warriors' den as Fireheart scolds him.

Fireheart later assigns him to lead a sunhigh patrol, and also lists his name off as one of the cats who would be going to the Gathering that night.

Runningwind shares prey with Sandstorm a few days later, after she had fought with Fireheart over Cloudpaw. When Fireheart makes amends with Sandstorm, Runningwind does not say a word, but his eyes glow with amusement. He asks sharply what happened to Cloudpaw when Ashpaw came over to them. He frowns when he hears that Cloudpaw had gone to live with Twolegs, remarking that Darkstripe would enjoy the news.

He later goes out on an evening patrol with Mousefur and Thornpaw. Not long after the patrol leaves, Mousefur and Thornpaw return to camp, terrified, explaining to everyone that they were attacked and have no idea where Runningwind is.

StarClan

Fireheart takes a patrol out to the Thunderpath, where the patrol had been, and sees Runningwind's body, lying lifelessly on the Thunderpath, with Whitethroat standing over him, shocked. It is revealed that his patrol was attacked by Tigerclaw and his band of rogues, and that they had killed Runningwind. His body is then brought back to camp and the Clan sits vigil for him.

At Firestar's leader ceremony, he gives Firestar his fourth life, with the gift of tireless energy, to use to carry out the duties of a leader. As the life is given to him, Firestar feels as if he is racing through the forest, able to outrace any enemy forever.

During the battle against BloodClan, Firestar feels Runningwind, lithe and muscular, fighting next to him, along with the other StarClan cats who gave him his nine lives.

During the battle between the Clans and the Dark Forest, he appears with the rest of StarClan, making Dovewing jump. Firestar asks if Runningwind is still fast on his paws, and Runningwind confirms that he is. Firestar then sends him with Dustpelt to chase off the invading Dark Forest cats.

Later, Runningwind is introduced by Jayfeather as the cat that gave Firestar the life of tireless energy when the tabby cat comes with StarClan to retrieve Firestar's spirit.

References and Citations

  1. Revealed in Tigerclaw's Fury, chapter 5
  2. Revealed in Fire and Ice, page 314
  3. Revealed in Into the Wild

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