|“||Keep your eyes open, Fireheart. Keep your ears pricked. Keep looking behind you. Because one day I'll find you, and then you"ll be crow-food.||„|
Tigerstar, formerly known as Tigerclaw, is a major villain in Erin Hunter's Warriors book series. He is a huge, broad-shouldered, dark brown tabby tomcat with amber eyes, unusually long front claws, a V-shaped cut in his ear, and a scar across his muzzle. He is the main antagonist of the first six books of the story arc "The Prophecies Begin".
When he was a kitten, his father, Pinestar left ThunderClan to become a kittypet. The shame of that would haunt Tigerkit forever, and without a father in his life, he was left vulnerable to his future mentor's policies. When he was an apprentice, he was mentored by Thistleclaw, a warrior who was well-known for his courage and loyalty, but was also arrogant, aggressive and secretly training in the Place of No Stars with Mapleshade. Tigerpaw learned from that aggression, and one day on patrol, he violently assaulted an innocent kittypet kitten named Tiny, and would have killed him had Bluestar (then Bluefur) not stopped him. That little kittypet would later become Scourge, leader of BloodClan, and then somewhat ironically, Tigerstar's murderer.
He was one of the greatest warriors in ThunderClan when then Firepaw (later Fireheart) first joined. He was believed to be unflinchingly loyal and devoted to the Clan's well-being. However, Ravenpaw had seen him murder ThunderClan's former deputy, Redtail, in hopes of becoming deputy himself. Ravenpaw confessed what he saw to Firepaw, and later escaped ThunderClan to stay safe.
Once made deputy, Tigerclaw decided that he had to hasten his promotion to leader, and laid a trap for Bluestar, ThunderClan's leader at the time, to be hit on the Thunderpath. Fireheart's apprentice Cinderpaw (later Cinderpelt) was caught in it instead, and was permanently crippled.
After that plan failed, an increasingly desperate Tigerclaw plotted with Brokenstar to lead a gang of rogues into ThunderClan camp so that while the Clan was distracted, he could kill Bluestar and blame it on a rogue instead. Fireheart saved Bluestar just in time, and Tigerclaw was sentenced to exile, while Fireheart replaced him as deputy.
For the majority of the next book, Tigerclaw was seen as a rogue, sometimes prowling ThunderClan's territory, and slaughtered one of their Warriors, Runningwind.
Soon, opportunity to become leader presented itself. ShadowClan was left leaderless after their leader Nightstar, and their deputy, Cinderfur, died from a sickness eidemic. He was appointed leader in their place, and then given nine lives at the Moonstone; A life for compassion, given by Littlebird; A life for training young cats wisely, given by Badgerfang; A life given by Pinestar to understand what goes on beyond the border; A life for knowing that size isn't everything, and that he should beware small cats (foreshadowing his death at the claws of Scourge); A life for pride and knowing that a Clan can stand alone, given by Sedgestar; A gift for placing faith in StarClan; A gift for trusting your instincts given by Redscar; A life for mercy given by Mossheart; A life for farsightedness, which was given by Cedarstar.
Now known as Tigerstar, he attempted to get revenge against ThunderClan by luring a pack of wild dogs onto ThunderClan territory. This lead to the apprentice Swiftpaw dying and Brightpaw (later Brightheart) being permanently scarred. He then lay a trail of dead rabbits to ThunderClan camp, that ended with the queen, Brindleface, he slaughtered so that the dogs would get a taste for cat blood. His plan was thwarted when Fireheart broke the trail and then lured the dogs to the gorge. At the gorge, before Fireheart could lead them over, Tigerstar attacked Fireheart so that the dog leader could catch up and kill him.
Bluestar ultimately sacrificed her last life to save Fireheart by cannoning herself into the dog leader's side, thus throwing both herself and the dog over the gorge and into the river. Bluestar was pulled out by the RiverClan warriors Mistyfoot and Stonefur. Tigerstar looked on as Bluestar begged the two RiverClan warriors for forgiveness, revealing that she was their real mother. He watched as Bluestar died, leaving his arch-enemy Fireheart in control of ThunderClan, to become Firestar.
Later, Tigerstar announced his plan to unite the forest under his rule as one Clan, saying that it was "StarClan's will." This was received negatively, except by Leopardstar, leader of RiverClan, who had already allied with him and to create "TigerClan." He led an era of terror, ruthlessly eliminating any cat who disagreed with him and persecuting half-Clan cats. This persecution led to the death of the half RiverClan, half ThunderClan, Stonefur, who was Leopardstar's loyal deputy. He was slaughtered by Tigerstar's deputy, Blackfoot, helped by Darkstripe, while defending the half-Clan apprentices Stormpaw and Featherpaw. Firestar, Graystripe, and Ravenpaw (Tigerstar's former apprentice), saved the three remaining three prisoners, Stormpaw, Featherpaw and Mistyfoot and allowed them to stay in ThunderClan.
Tigerstar tried to get WindClan and ThunderClan to join him under TigerClan, and so he launched an attack on the WindClan camp to instill fear, knowing that Firestar would come to help, and left a message to meet him at Fourtrees the next day.
Tigerstar met with Firestar and Tallstar, WindClan's leader, to hear their answer on whether or not they would join TigerClan, which they both refused. He then offered a position especially to Bramblepaw, his son, and Firestar's apprentice. Even though Bramblepaw's sister, Tawnypaw, left ThunderClan to join TigerClan on her free own will, Bramblepaw declared that he would rather die than join his father. In response, Tigerstar revealed BloodClan, a large group of cats from Twolegplace who were led by a small, but deadly black tom named Scourge. Firestar attempted to convince all the Cats present that of Tigerstar's treachery, telling them of Tigerstar's brutal past and warning Scourge that he could never be trusted to divide power. Tigerstar told them to disregard this and ordered an attack, but as BloodClan only took orders from Scourge, they refused. Seemingly intrigued by what Firestar had said, Scourge decided that there would be no battle that day. Enraged, Tigerstar accused Scourge of being a traitor and launched himself at him in an attempt to kill him. But Scourge outmanevured him easily and ripped Tigerstar's belly wide open with his dog-teeth reinforced claws. This wound was so terrible that Tigerstar lost all nine lives at once, putting what seemed to be the end of the most dangerous cat in the whole forest.
Tigerstar's hatred lived beyond death, though. In the next arc, he waked in the Place of No Stars, also known as the Dark Forest, plotting revenge against Firestar. He discovered that he could dwell in the dreams of others, and began training his sons Brambleclaw and Hawkfrost in their sleep. Later on, Hawkfrost set a trap to kill Firestar, but Brambleclaw saved his leader and killed his brother instead. Once dead, Hawkfrost resumed training with his father, eventually training more Dark Forest cats to one day wage war against the Clans.
Tigerstar then began to influence Lionblaze, whom he believed was Brambleclaw's son. Lionblaze turned on Tigerstar when he learned that Tigerstar only wanted revenge against ThunderClan, instead of making Lionblaze a better warrior like he promised.
In the final book of Omen of the Stars, the Last Hope, Tigerstar unleashed the Dark Forest Cats he had been training to attack the Clans. Near the end of the war, Tigerstar faced off against Firestar. They consecutively killed each other, sending Firestar to StarClan, and destroying Tigerstar's spirit for good.
In his youth, Tigerstar, then known as Tigerkit, was an eager and energetic, albeit aggressive and competitive kitten who loved to play. He was deeply shocked and angered by his father, Pinestar's decision to leave their Clan to take refuge in the life of a kittypet. The shame of this abandonment would stay with Tigerkit for the rest of his life and he was determined to prove his own loyalty. His father's abandonment, combined with the brutal training he received under his mentor Thistleclaw, hardened Tigerclaw into a ruthless warrior who was willing to do whatever it took achieve victory. His aggression was to the point where he attacked, wounded and nearly killed an innocent kittypet kit when he just stepped onto the border of ThunderClan's territory. He justified this act as simply defending his Clan's territory and was even proud of it, even though there was no honour in "fighting" a helpless kit.
Perhaps because of his father's decision to be a kittypet, Tigerclaw harboured a strong hatred for kittypets and all other non-forest born cats, such as rogues and loners. He also despised half-Clan cats (cats whose parents where from different Clans), claiming their "impure blood" made them unpredictable and untrustoworthy. When he first met Firepaw, a former kittypet who had been allowed to join the Clan, Tigerclaw disliked him instantly, even though the younger tom initially respected him.
As stated by Firestar and later Longtail (who ironically was once a strong supporter of Tigerstar), Tigerstar's ultimate goal in life was power and he was willing to do absolutely anything to get it. He murdered the ThunderClan deputy Redtail (who was not only his Clanmate, but his uncle) in cold blood and blamed it on an enemy warrior, in the hope that he would be made deputy in Redtail's place, ensuring his eventual rise to leader. Despite eventually being made deputy, Tigerclaw was not willing to wait until Bluestar died to become leader, and plotted to kill her as well. After his attempt to lure her to the Thunderpath failed, he grew increasingly desperate, fearing Fireheart knew the truth and was stealing Bluestar's attention. He used a gang of rogues (showing that despite his hatred for non-Clan cats he was not above working with them if it suited him) to attack his own Clan and tried to murder Bluestar in her den while the Clan was distracted. His plan was foiled by Fireheart, who stopped him at the last moment. When Bluestar asked him why he'd done it, Tigerclaw called his leader a "gutless excuse for a warrior", claiming she was soft for helping the other Clans and that he would have ThunderClan great. Banished for his betrayal, Tigerclaw swore revenge on Fireheart and all of ThunderClan for denying him what he wanted most.
Even after becoming leader of ShadowClan and thus finally achieving his ambition, Tigerstar continued to hold a grudge against ThunderClan, disregarding the fact that he betrayed them in the first place. He tried to get revenge on them by luring a pack of wild dogs to their camp This lead to the apprentice Swiftpaw dying, Brightpaw being permanently scarred and the queen, Brindleface, being slaughtered by Tigerstar so that the dogs would develop a taste for cat blood. His plan ultimately was thwarted yet again by Fireheart.
Despite finally achieving his ambition to be a leader, Tigerstar was still not satisfied and plotted to take over the whole forest by uniting the four Clans into one with himself as leader. He firmly believed that it was his "destiny" to rule the forest. However, Tigerstar knew that Firestar, now leader of ThunderClan, would refuse to join him, and sought to force him and all others who defied him into submission. He formed an alliance with Scourge, the leader of the violent cats known as "BloodClan", with the promise that if they helped him take over the forest, he would give them a share of the territories. He had no intention of keeping his word, intending to betray and get rid of BloodClan once he had achieved what he wanted. However, due to his own arrogance and Scourge's small size, he severely underestimated Scourge, who unbeknownest to him was the young kittypet he'd "fought" as an apprentice. Tigerstar's plan ultimately backfired when Scourge refused to obey Tigerstar's order to fight his enemies and Firestar took the opportunity to tarnish Tigerstar's reputation by revealing his past crimes. Tigerstar was so enraged by the failure of his plan that he attacked Scourge, but this was another mistake as Scourge outfought him easily, resulting in Tigerstar dying a slow and gruesome death.
However, for all his faults, Tigerstar was still courageous, intelligent, proud and strong. Even Firestar, his greatest rival, could not deny that he had possessed the potential to be truly great, and believed that if Tigerstar had chosen loyalty over ambition and just waited for power to come to him, then he would've become the greatest leader the Clans had ever seen.
- Tigerstar's death is extremely similar to that of Claudandus: Both are cats who have their stomachs ripped open in a fight, the only difference being Tigerstar was slain by a villain.