Rating Canon Warriors Couples – Power of Three

My next rating article deals with my second favorite arc of the Warriors series, Power of Three (it would be my favorite arc if the original wasn’t so iconic)As an arc whose main characters only exist because of a forbidden relationship, as discussed in my previous article, I expected this article to contain more relationships than it did. Unfortunately, most of these are so middle-of-the-road I had trouble coming up with discussion points.

All the following couples became official in Po3, though I will discuss their relationship up to the current Warriors release. Please be aware that this article will contain major spoilers for the Warriors series. Read at your own risk!

Tawnypelt and Rowanclaw(star)
Blackstar, Rowanclaw/star, Tawnypelt, and Cedarheart in a Russian illustration for Battles of the Clans. Art by Leonid Nasyrov.

Rating: 5.5/10

Other than a few moments here and there, I don’t hold much space for the relationship between Tawnypelt and Rowanclaw/star. The only time they get the spotlight is the events in A Vision of Shadows when Tawnypelt stands by her mate and leader Rowanstar when ShadowClan is in turmoil. Tawnypelt got separate attention in both the first and second arcs, but together not as much. I will say I’ve always appreciated how much they’ve supported one another, with Tawnypelt often leaving on small journeys and her supporting Rowanstar during the period when his leadership was questioned and, eventually, when he stepped down. I’ve always been under the impression that Tawnypelt should’ve become deputy and leader before Rowanclaw, but that’s neither here nor there. Together, they have three kits: Tigerheart/star, Flametail, and Dawnpelt. Tragically, two out of three of those end up deceased, but from what can be seen, both of them appear to have been good parents to them. I also want to honor the fact that Rowanclaw must’ve allowed Tawnypelt to name one of their kits after her late father despite the evilness of Tigerstar 1.0 and the difficulties this might present for their kit. In general, I think they have mutual respect for each other, which allows for this average rating.

Crowfeather and Nightcloud
Crowfeather on the cover of Crowfeather’s Trial. Art by Owen Richardson.

Rating: 0/10

This one is pretty simple: Crowfeather and Nightcloud were never meant to be together. It’s almost funny how many lovers Crowfeather has throughout Warriors, but their relationship is tragic in a different way. When Crowfeather returns to WindClan after running away with Leafpool, he quickly takes a WindClan mate to ensure his loyalty to his birth Clan. Neither of them was ever in love with each other and, honestly, don’t even seem to have liked each other either. This messy relationship results in Nightcloud filling their only son, Breezepelt, with hate for his father. When Crowfeather’s parentage to Lionblaze, Hollyleaf, and Jayfeather is revealed at the end of Power of Three, he holds fast to his WindClan family despite their mutual dislike. With his upbringing and this news, Breezepelt falls prey to The Dark Forest (in Omen of the Stars), another failing of Crowfeather and Nightcloud’s parenting. That’s not to say Breezepelt didn’t make his own decisions, but it’s no surprise with who his parents are. It’s rare in Warriors for couples to break up, but that’s what Crowfeather and Nightcloud do. They finally reconcile their differences in Crowfeather’s Trial when he risks everything to find and save her (alongside Breezepelt), but that doesn’t mean they ever were or could be a good couple. A zero rating is fitting for a relationship that held no warmth at any point in the books.

Graystripe and Millie
Graystripe and Millie on the Polish cover for The Lost Warrior from Graystripe’s Adventure graphic novels/manga. Art by Piotr Sokołowski.

Rating: 4/10

After losing Silverstream, I wasn’t sure Graystripe was going to have a mate again. When he was captured by Twolegs in arc two, while the forest was being destroyed, I was convinced we’d never even see him again. I shouldn’t have worried too much as Graystripe does return in Power of Three and with him, his new mate, Millie. The time lost and their adventure to find the Clans is revealed in his graphic novel, Graystripe’s Adventure. In it, readers learn how Graystripe briefly lives as a kittypet before he leaves to find the Clans with former kittypet Millie. A lot of their relationship is shown through his graphic novel, and I’ll admit that they are a fine couple. Millie is adventurous and determined, a good companion for Graystripe as he readjusts to the wilderness. However, I dislike how he acts in most of the graphic novel, often snapping at Millie and belittling her kittypet origins. They make up in the end and join ThunderClan, eventually having three kits. They just don’t do it for me though. I don’t particularly love either of their characters, especially with Millie’s later treatment of Briarlight and Blossomfall. They might be prominent characters in the series, Graystripe especially, but they aren’t my favorite. I’m glad Graystripe was able to heal his broken heart when finding Millie, but I still think he was better with Silverstream in the beginning. I considered giving them a three, but I bumped it up to a four in consideration of their nicer moments together.

Lionpaw and Heatherpaw
Lionpaw/blaze and Heatherpaw/tail in a Russia illustration for Power of Three: Dark River. Art by E.A Savelyev.

Rating: 5/10

Personally, I remember loving these two in their innocent crushes. While they were never an official “couple,” the feelings between Lionpaw and Heatherpaw were present as they stole away into the tunnels between ThunderClan and WindClan to play. It’s both foreshadowing and ironic that Lionpaw (later Lionblaze) was almost following in his biological mother’s paw steps by seeing a WindClan cat (as Leafpool did with Crowfeather). Pretty much the only reason they get a five out of ten rating is because they likely wouldn’t have been good for each other in the long run. As a warrior, Lionblaze has a destiny much too important to be distracted by an out-of-Clan relationship, and I believe Heathertail would’ve realized where her loyalties lay eventually. In the meantime, the two young cats playing make-believe with their imaginary Clan, DarkClan, in the tunnels were always cute scenes. It allowed for some interesting dynamics as well, with Hollypaw and Lionpaw fighting about his friendship with the WindClan apprentice. The bad blood between Lionpaw and Heatherpaw continues as they’re warriors, so there’s no hope of rekindling that innocent love they shared as youths. In another storyline, perhaps these two would’ve been a good couple, but as they stand now, their potential union was only good for dramatizing the plot.

Berrynose and Honeyfern
Honeyfern and Briarkit/light in a Russian illustration for Power of Three: Sunrise. Art by Leonid Nasyrov.

Rating: 7.5/10

Of all the couples in this article, Honeyfern and Berrynose are ranked the highest despite never being official mates in the series. It was obvious they were about to become mates until Honeyfern gave her life to save a kit, Briarkit, from an adder. In general, I loved Honeyfern’s character in her life. She was a bright, energetic apprentice in Power of Three and a kind, smart warrior as well (though brief). One of the reasons I rank these two so high is because Honeyfern was pining after Berrynose so early, when he was a fresh warrior and she was an older apprentice. Nothing ever happened, but I always found it hilarious that our POV characters (Lionpaw, Hollypaw, and Jaypaw at the time) seemed to notice her padding after Berrynose and find it annoying. Berrynose himself is a controversial character for me, mostly because he often shows growth and then regresses to his arrogant, controlling self. When Honeyfern becomes a warrior and Berrynose takes notice of her, though, their relationship is a sweet one. The final scene for Honeyfern is another reason I love this couple, despite the pain it causes. In camp, Honeyfern and Berrynose are observed by Lionblaze to be talking about their future kits on the basking rocks while watching ThunderClan’s current kits playing. Moments later, Honeyfern notices an adder (snake) coming out from the basking rocks, primed to snatch one of the kittens. Without even a thought, she risks her life and takes the bite from the snake instead, thus creating an agonizing death that Berrynose comforts her through. If this doesn’t prove Honeyfern’s selflessness, she also later supports Berrynose and her own sister’s relationship from StarClan, which I’ll talk about in the next article.

Birchfall and Whitewing
Whitewing in an illustration for Battles of the Clans. Art by Wayne McLoughlin.

Rating: 6/10

While I struggled between giving a 5.5 or 6 rating, I ended up going with the latter for Whitewing and Birchfall. As a background couple, they’ve gotten a little more of the spotlight for a couple reasons. One, they were the only apprentices of ThunderClan when the Clans first settled into the lake territories, and two, they are the parents of POV characters Ivypool and Dovewing. For their kits alone, I appreciate the pairing. I enjoy them also because of how they were set up. More recent arcs have struggled with allowing background characters to have little moments, but back in Po3, this wasn’t an issue. After Squirrelpaw becomes Squirrelflight in The New Prophecy, Whitepaw is the only apprentice until Birchkit is old enough to become Birchpaw. Although Whitepaw comes of age to take her warrior assessment, she decides to put it off and wait for Birchpaw so that he won’t be a lone apprentice like she was once. I thought this was a sweet nod to their future as a couple and a good way to characterize her. It was no surprise when they were confirmed to be mates. Later in the series, we also see them being parents, though Whitewing’s care and concern for her daughters, Ivypool and Dovewing, is much more apparent than Birchfall’s. Birchfall even trains in The Dark Forest, making a “proud” comment to Ivypool when he discovers she is too. These two have fallen back a bit in the newer books, but I’m hoping they may become Clan elders one day with their relationship spotlighted again.

Daisy and Spiderleg
Spiderleg and Birchfall in Chinese manga panel from Omen of the Stars: Sign of the Moon. Source is @LiaMysticV2 on Twitter/X.

Rating: 0.5/10

I feel bad for Daisy at this point, a cat who is well deserving of a loving mate but never gets one. Her relationship with the barn cat Smoky is dissolved when she runs away to join ThunderClan, and her crush on Cloudtail would never come to anything, with his heart set only for Brightheart. Knowing she can’t have either of those cats, she seems to grow close to Spiderleg, who was mentoring her son Mousepaw/whisker. The two briefly become mates and have kits, Rosekit/petal and Toadkit/step. However, pretty quickly, they break up. Spiderleg is never attentive to her or his kits, which frustrates Daisy. I cheered her on when she confronted him, telling him he was missing out on their kits’ lives and he needed to be a better father. They never get back together and otherwise have barely any scenes. I enjoyed their kits, Rosepetal and Toadstep as characters, so I am glad they gave Daisy another litter, even if it came with more heartbreak. The only reason they got half a point is because I actually enjoy seeing tumultuous couples or couples that don’t work out. It’s too unrealistic that a majority of the couples in Warriors live happily ever after.

Mousepaw/whisker and Minnowpaw/tail
Hollypaw/leaf, Willowpaw/shine, Reedwhisker, Voletooth, Minnowtail, and Pouncetail in a Russian illustration for Power of Three: Dark River. Art by E.A. Savelyev.

Rating: 7/10

Okay, okay, I admit it, Mousewhisker and Minnowtail aren’t really a couple and can barely even be called a potential couple at that. This pairing all started from The Sight in Power of Three when Minnowpaw introduces Lionpaw (later Lionblaze) to Minnowpaw at a Gathering. In the scene, Mousepaw is shown fawning over Minnowpaw, his crush on her very apparent. From there on, we don’t get anything of the two together. I believe the main reason this became a “thing” in the fandom is because Mousewhisker has never taken a mate or had kits in the entire length of the series. To me and others, this seems like a waste and missed opportunity. ThunderClan especially has a problem with having too many related cats, and Mousewhisker’s “outsider” blood would’ve been perfect to avoid incest kittens in ThunderClan. It’s a little funny then that I do really like the ship with Minnowtail, since she’s a RiverClan cat. If they were to have a secret relationship (though this is no longer technically forbidden with the recent Code change), the two of them are unfortunately on opposite sides of the lake. I rated them a little lower because of this, considering it would be difficult to have a relationship otherwise. They did both train in The Dark Forest in OotS, which allows some wiggle-room for (fanon) development. At the end of the day, because of how unofficial this relationship is, I should’ve rated it lower. For once though, I decided to indulge myself and give them a higher rating based more on vibes and less on logistics.

Check out my two other articles for this series:

“Rating Canon Warriors Couples – The Prophecies Begin”

“Rating Canon Warriors Couples – The New Prophecy”

About Hailey Watkins

Hailey is a self-proclaimed bookworm and writer. While she loves to read fantasy or slice-of-life the most, their heart belongs truly to the Warrior cats book series. She has collected and read all of the books in the nearly 100-book-long (and counting) series. She's also a fan of reading Webtoons, graphic novels, and manga, as well as watching anime. When they're not writing about fandom, their day job is as a substitute teacher.

View all posts by Hailey Watkins

2 Comments on “Rating Canon Warriors Couples – Power of Three”

  1. AMAZING ARTICLE AS PER USUAL!!! It’s such a shame that Power of Three is so lacking in couples, honestly? Despite being one of the better arcs overall, its still surprising that there wasnt much a focus on relationships of this type!! Though i absolutely agree with each of these! Honeyfern and Berrynose especially :’) idk why they’re just one of the cutest to me and always will be!!

    1. Thank you, thank you!!! I almost wonder if the lack of focus on relationships allowed for all of the characterization and friendships to form. So much more organic than the newer arcs!

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