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This article contains plot details about the recently released book, The Poison Jungle. It would be best if you did not view this page until after reading the new installment.
Cricket is a young female HiveWing and the main protagonist of The Hive Queen. She is interested in several fields of science, such as invention and botany, and is one of the only known HiveWings, besides the Queen’s family and Bumblebee, who was not stabbed with the Breath of Evil by Queen Wasp. She is currently on the run to Pyrrhia with Bumblebee and Sundew, and has romantic feelings towards Blue. She is also noted for being inquisitive and asking a lot of questions, which often annoy other dragons.
Cricket has orange-gold scales speckled here and there with black inkblot scales ,golden yellow talons (although she has black talons on the The Hive Queen cover), and warm, dark brown eyes. She is smaller than Blue and has small, sharp claws like a leopard’s, as well as an open and curious face. It is said by Blue that she has warm, dark brown eyes. She wears gold-rimmed, hexagonal spectacles like her father, and a bag tied sideways across her chest. She is said by Blue to smell like books, apples, and cinnamon. Her horns are black.
Cricket is very fascinated by science and invention, and is always eager to learn new things. Cricket is highly curious and inquisitive, and, much to Sundew, her parents, and her teacher's annoyance, is constantly asking questions about anything and everything. She is slightly rebellious and often frustrated by the strict laws of HiveWing society. Cricket is never portrayed as dignified or authoritarian and she is shown to be, on multiple occasions, empathetic and compassionate. This is demonstrated when she rescued Blue from her own tribe in The Lost Continent and later helped him search and rescue Swordtail. Cricket carries little of the usual HiveWing smugness and haughtiness, is kind yet firm, and is not pushed around easily. Cricket is also very open-minded as shown in The Lost Continent when Blue observed that she stopped to listen and think about what he said and weighed it against her ideas and beliefs. Blue commented (to himself) that he liked the way she didn't have all her ideas set firmly in her head like most dragons and was willing to see different perspectives. Cricket dislikes violence and conflict and wants the best for most dragons. Cricket is also extremely intelligent. This is proven on multiple occasions, a significant one being that in The Hive Queen when she found a library key hidden upon a statue of Clearsight with nothing more than a few very vague directions, 'Midnight. Library. Five.' But she also thinks that she can save the tribes with “truth and flyers” according to Sundew.
Cricket made her first appearance when she helped Blue, a young SilkWing, by pulling him into a shed that was hidden from the eyes of the pursuing HiveWings. After being asked by a rather confused and scared Blue, Cricket admitted that, for an unknown reason, she could not be mind-controlled by Queen Wasp like the rest of her tribe was. After escaping through tunnels located under the HiveWing school, Cricket brought Blue to an empty low-level library, where he began to feel dizzy. Cricket speculated that the HiveWings had probably injected him with a barb covered in sleeping toxin within his arm band, most likely implemented to make him easier to capture. After Cricket burned off Blue's arm band with a strand of flamesilk belonging to one of the library's lamps, he fell into a woozy sleep.
He woke up to Cricket's talons shaking him awake and voices echoing nearby. Cricket and Blue hid in the tunnels once again while three mind-controlled HiveWings searched the area; one of them was Cricket's own sister, Katydid, and another was an arrogant dragon named Bombardier, who believed that Cricket was madly in love with him. After the HiveWing trio had cleared the library, Cricket and Blue emerged into the light once more, where Cricket pulled a book off of a high shelf. From the book, they learned that if a SilkWing had one flamesilk parent, then they had a fifty percent chance of becoming a flamesilk as well. Leaving the library, Cricket led Blue through the school - she showed him her terrarium, where a little tree was growing in the middle. She explained that she had found its seed on one of her school gathering trips and that she hadn't known what it was until it started growing. Cricket told Blue that Professor Earthworm, a teacher at the school, wanted her to uproot it. Next, Cricket took Blue into an art room, where she began to paint him in a mix of dull browns, reds, and blues to hide his vibrant scales. They became closer in a moment in which Cricket told Blue about how Principal Lubber scolded her for her chaotic yet beautiful art. "Cricket, why can't you just draw a normal blue blueberry like all the other dragonets?" Blue imitated Principal Lubber, making Cricket laugh, saying: "That's exactly what she sounds like!"
Once they were out of the school, Cricket agreed to help rescue Blue's friend Swordtail from Misbehaver's Way. They found him frozen to his pedestal in an angry position, like he was trying to fight his way out of being paralyzed, but in obvious vain. Cricket held a bubbling green vial under Swordtail's nose to combat the HiveWing paralysis toxin, but the mixture also gave Swordtail green eyes and silk, extra strength and made him a little loopy. After Swordtail smashed one of the rule tablets straight through the Hive's treestuff, Cricket decided that it was time to go. Wrapping Blue's shoulders in a few strands of silk, Swordtail grabbed him and lifted off. They flew for most of the night, and by dawn, they were near to Wasp Hive's border. Eventually, they hid in a massive divot in the ground, flying to the bottom and down a tunnel once there, where they encountered a small pool of cold water. At the other end of the pool, they discovered a small campfire and a small creature reading a book that resembled a monkey, presumably similar to Pyrrhia's scavengers. After the monkey creature was scared away by Cricket's voice, Swordtail passed out near the fire, and Blue took first watch while Cricket slept as well. When night falls once again, Swordtail tries and fails to lift Blue - the stimulant had worn off, and Cricket had used all of it the first time; Cricket eventually came up with the idea for Blue to climb, with Swordtail's silk wrapped around him in case he slipped and fell. Near the top of the divot, Cricket and Blue found a small cave, where they curled up together and Blue got some much-needed rest while Swordtail returned to the bottom of the divot. After the HiveWing parties had stopped coming to search near the hole, Swordtail flew ahead while Cricket and Blue snuck through the savannah's tall grass.
When they finally are able to sneak into Wasp Hive, they hide in one of the queen's greenhouses. Unexpectedly, they are captured by three strange dragons - and, terrifyingly, they turned out to be LeafWings, the supposedly deadly and cruel mortal enemies of the HiveWings. They introduce themselves as Sundew, Belladonna, and Hemlock. They explained that if Cricket, Blue, and Swordtail wanted to live, then they would steal the Book of Clearsight and return it to them. Cricket's initial plan was to leave once the LeafWings had let them go, but Belladonna sent Sundew with them to ensure that they got the job done. Disguising Sundew as a SilkWing, Hemlock rubbed flower juice on her scales to add more color. Belladonna also tied two makeshift wings made of leaves to Sundew's back, instructing her to keep her real ones folded to make them appear more realistic. While Swordtail stayed with Belladona and Hemlock, Cricket, Blue, and Sundew went out into the Hive to finish their task. Sundew gave Cricket a large flower, instructing her not to crush any part of it; Cricket held it under the noses of the two HiveWings guarding the entrance to the to Wasp Hive, knocking them out but leaving them alive. Pushing aside two heavy wooden doors, they walked through a series of hallways until they were standing at the foot of the Temple.
Once they were inside, Blue and Sundew acted as Cricket's servants until Sundew got close enough to the guards to paralyze them. In the final room, Sundew was confronted by a dark voice, which turned out to The Librarian. After she ripped off her dark veil, Cricket realized that her eyes were fully white - the unmistakable symbol of the queen's mind control. Sundew attacked the Librarian from her side, and the two continued to fight while Blue picked up the bookcase key - dropped during the fight - and stole the Book. After Sundew had broken the Librarian's arm, she speculated that enough pain would make the queen exit her mind for a while; while the queen was mind-controlling someone, she felt everything that said dragon felt. Cricket opened a jar and shook a pair of bullet ants onto the Librarian's scales; after they bit her, the queen disappeared, and the Librarian's mind was her own for the first time in years. However, hundreds of brainwashed HiveWings were now surrounding the Temple with the intent to kill Cricket and Sundew and to imprison Blue. The Librarian tried to help them escape, but Wasp had invaded her mind again, causing her to turn against her new companions. Cricket and Sundew were unable to help Blue as he fell into the waiting talons of the HiveWings; as Blue threw the Book of Clearsight into Cricket's talons, they fled.
After a few days trapped in the flamesilk factory, Blue felt talons brush his through a hole in the building's wall; they were Cricket's talons, and she was accompanied by Sundew and Swordtail. After telling Luna - who had emerged out of her cocoon - and trying to convince his father, Admiral, to go with them, Admiral had refused and had tried to alert the watching HiveWing guards. However, Danaid, another of the imprisoned flamesilks, helped them by starting an argument that covered the noise of Admiral's warning. Knocking down the loose stones around the hole, they all escaped down a series of tunnels. Cricket, along with the rest of the gang, escape through the LeafWing tunnel. When it ends at the sea, she is ecstatic and begins to express hope at finding the Distant Kingdoms (the Pantalan name for Pyrrhia). Afterward, she shows the others what is written in the Book of Clearsight, and that the last vision recorded took place over a thousand years before.
Luna and Swordtail decide to go for a flight, and Cricket stays with Blue, discussing his metamorphosis, and assuring him that it will be fine. Luna and Swordtail are discovered by some HiveWing soldiers, and a fight starts. As Sundew rushes to help, Cricket is left with Blue, about to start his metamorphosis. She guides him to a cave she found for him to hide in while he changes, and stays with him while he begins to spin his cocoon, promising him that she will be right there "the whole time", and will be next to him when he wakes up. As he weaves his cocoon, Blue reflects that he is in love with her, even though he had been dropping hints about it all through the book.
Cricket stood in the cave next to Blue (who was still experiencing his Metamorphosis), thinking about books and what her life was like before she met Blue. Sundew then entered the cave, dragging Swordtail with her. Cricket recalled Sundew's bravery and ferocity, along with the fact that she had insisted that they rescued Blue and Luna. She wondered if this was a form of kindness Sundew had hidden deep in her soul.
Cricket revived Swordtail with a plant Sundew gave her, and Swordtail immediately asked where Luna was. Both Cricket and Sundew had no idea, and they all seemed to wish she was there with them. When Swordtail noticed that Blue was a flamesilk, Sundew noted that Blue would be useful to burn down the Hives. Swordtail seemed to like the idea. Cricket was firmly against this, and she knew Blue would be as well. Cricket argued that even HiveWings could be on their side, but none of them seemed to like this idea.
Cricket insisted on finding information before jumping into action, so they flew toward Jewel Hive with the intention of finding out more about Queen Wasp's Hive Mind. First, however, they visited the Glitterbazaar to disguise themselves, making it easier to get into the Hive. They met up with some members of the Chrysalis, but they didn't seem to know much about taking down Queen Wasp quite like Sundew, Cricket, and Swordtail had hoped.
However, Cricket met up with her sister, Katydid, who questioned her about her theft of the Book of Clearsight. Katydid didn't seem to follow what she was saying, though she did reveal that she was indeed not Cricket's sister, and Scarab later said that her father was a HiveWing named Malachite, who, according to Lady Scarab, was "brilliant, talented, made excellent coffee, full of exciting ideas". Queen Wasp found out that Scarab was fond of him, so she had him "promoted" to work at her Hive, and he was probably forever condemned to her mind control. After Malachite's disappearance, Katydid placed Cricket's egg into the hatchery with a forged identity as Cricket's sister.
Cricket, Sundew and Swordtail borrowed one of Lady Scarab's paintbrushes to create posters about Wasp and how she was lying to everyone. A lot of dragons seemed intrigued, and some of them seemed to believe the posters, but in the middle of her attempt, Cricket got caught by HiveWing guards. She was paralyzed, unable to say another word against the queen. The guards put her into a prison cell, where Lady Scarab and Lady Jewel found her. Cricket negotiated an escape for information she collected about how Queen Wasp can mind control dragons, as she had a theory in mind. She heard that Queen Wasp was going into the hatchery that night, giving her a chance to prove or deny her theory. Cricket escaped from the cell by utilizing the flamesilk and burning a hole in the ceiling.Tau and Cinnabar help her escape. Tau has a crush on a Hivewing who is Lady Jewel's treasurer, by distracting him cinnabar helped Cricket escape moments before Queen Wasp arrived. After that, she snuck into the hatchery and noticed an orphaned egg she sympathized, and took it with her as she hid in the rafters. She watched as Queen Wasp entered and proceeded to stab each egg with her tail stinger, marking each egg afterwards. When Queen Wasp left, Cricket took the egg with her and rendezvoused with Blue, Swordtail, and Sundew. She camped with them outside Jewel Hive, and in the morning, the egg hatched. On the shell of the egg was an odorous green substance that Sundew said belonged to a plant in the greenhouse where she and Cricket first met - Queen Wasp's private greenhouse. They decided to go burn the greenhouse down, but as they did, they noticed Bloodworm Hive burning as well. Cricket convinced the others that the HiveWings were too busy with the destruction to worry about the greenhouse, so Blue used his flamesilk to burn it down. Once the greenhouse was burning, Blue, Swordtail, and Cricket left with Sundew to go to the Poison Jungle, home of the LeafWings.
In The Poison Jungle, Cricket had arrived along with Blue, Swordtail, Bumblebee and Sundew at the Poison Jungle, where Sundew takes them to the PoisonWing village. On the way there, Cricket encounters many of the dangerous plants, and witnesses Sundew's Leafspeak as she tries to stop a fire caused by Blue's flamesilk when he tried to save Swordtail from a dragon-trap. Cricket was said to be the only one who really realized what Sundew was doing.
She also discovers that Mandrake, son of Wolfsbane and brother of Nettle, was Sundew's "one true love". When Cricket arrives at the village, she is defined as Sundew's 'prisoner' as someone with information about Queen Wasp's mind control.
Soon, Cricket meets Queen Sequoia in the SapWings village and is sent on a mission with Sundew, Willow, Mandrake, Nettle, and Bumblebee to find Hawthorn, the LeafWing that guarded the mind-control plant. After saving Sundew from being a plants lunch they arrive at the Den of Vipers which is full of very still dragonbite vipers. Then the group meets Hawthorn, who invites them for tea at his little hut. Then they find out that Hawthorn discovered the “Breath of Evil” vine and had been experimenting on the snakes. Then he told them that he had gave the vine to Queen Wasp at a peace summit and had slipped it in her food. But he had the cure that could save the Hivewings and Katydid. They tested it out on a HiveWing named Inchworm, and it seemingly worked. She then leaves the Eye of the Jungle to check on Blue.
Sundew later found the antidote was the breath of evil itself, and Hawthorn, possessed by the plant, tried to use his leafspeak to strangle her to death. Sundew fought him with her leafspeak, and Willow ended up killing him, freeing Cricket.
Cricket is later seen in the throne room, preparing to departure with the free LeafWings and SilkWings.
"Oh my gosh. Oh-- oh my gosh. Do you see that? What is happening? Who is that? Why is she amazing and blue and look at her wings are those webbed talons? Are they for swimming? Is she a water dragon? What is she and where did she come from and OH MY GOSH SHE'S FROM THE DISTANT KINGDOMS ISN'T SHE?" - Cricket to Sundew about seeing Tsunami The Poison Jungle, pages 133
"Really? Why don't you know your father? Is that normal for SilkWings? Don't you live with your parents? Or, I'm sorry, is that a question I'm not supposed to ask? I ask a lot of questions I'm not supposed to ask, apparently, according to most of my teachers - also my parents - actually, according to pretty much every grown-up HiveWing. Too many questions, Cricket! Don't you know what happens to nosy little HiveWings? They lose those noses! Which is silly; I've never seen a dragonet without a nose and I'm sure I can't be the first one with this many questions. What's your name? Oh, that's another question. Sorry. I'm Cricket." - Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent, pages 67-68
"His name's Bombardier. But he's awful, so there's not much different between regular him and brain-dead him. He thinks I'm in love with him, if you've ever wondered what the most enormous arrogance looks like. I guess I'd still save him, but maybe, like, last." - Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent.
"Is it a secret? A SilkWing secret? Do you guys have lots of secrets from us? Can you tell me some of them? I promise not to tell anyone! There's so much I don't know about SilkWings, but Father won't let me ask the servants anything." Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent, pages 88-89
"Let's think. Flamesilk orders go out all the time, because each thread only burns for about one cycle of the smallest moon before it fades. Which means someone has to get the flamesilk from the dragons producing it, to fill the orders. So whose job is it? And someone must keep them fed and taken care of ... And of course Queen Wasp knows. So there must be a way to trace the flamesilk back to wherever the dragons are. This is definitely a solvable mystery." - Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent, page 90
"I wish I could go to your school for a day. I'd love to hear what other dragons are learning, wouldn't you? Are your teachers interesting? How big is your library? Do you have music classes? I wish we did; I don't understand music at all and I really want to." - Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent, page 94
"I usually think of rules as things that get in the way of all the stuff I really want to know. I mean, how can don't ask questions ever be a good rule? Or only borrow one book at a time from the library. That's just ludicrous. No one ever explains rules like that in a sensible way. But don't hurt other dragons - that's a rule I think everyone believes in, right? So... I guess I believe in some rules, and I think rules in general can be useful, but I also think it's all right to stop and and question some of the rules sometimes, if they feel wrong to you." - Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent, page 97-98
"A dollhouse book? Which the monkey found somewhere? No, you're right. This is the monkey's book. When we came in, I thought its expression looked familiar - and that's because it was reading. Mystery animals in a cave under the savannah- who can READ! Blue, this is the biggest scientific discovery of our lifetime! I wouldn't have to be a gardener if I told the queen about this. I'm sure she'd let me change disciplines so I could study them. Don't you think? - Cricket to Blue The Lost Continent, page 141
"That's the kind of dragon I'm talking about, Sundew. What could she do if the queen didn't control her? I mean -- if she knew the truth about anything -- the flamesilks, the Book of Clearsight -- and she didn't have the queen in her head, making her do things and messing with her thoughts. Then could we trust her? Maybe she would try to help us."
"I know. But you can understand what I'm feeling, right? You can imagine how important this is to me and… and how important you are to me." - To Blue after he tells Cricket he doesn't want to leave her The Hive Queen, Page 202
"We'd be safe across the ocean, right? In the Distant Kingdoms?" - To Sundew The Poison Jungle, Page 6
"They're so big. I didn't know trees grew so enormous. Some of them look as tall as the Hives! How old are they? Can you tell? Would they all get that big if they lived that long? Are they all dangerous? Oh, please tell me you have books about all these plants!" - To Sundew The Poison Jungle, Page 7
"that's what I've been saying all along! we shoudl fly to the distant kingdoms!" - to Queen Sequoia, Sundew, and the others when Sequoia said they could fly even farther then the poison jungle.
"Katydid, everythings a lie! Queen Wasp is lying!" - to Katydid.
Cricket was shown to have a close relationship with her "sister", who, unlike her, was proven to be susceptible to Queen Wasp’s mind control. Before she met Blue, Katydid was the only other dragon to know of Cricket’s mind control immunity, since after realizing that Cricket was immune she encouraged her to hide it out of fear of what Queen Wasp would do upon finding out. Cricket also stated that though she often would go missing during and after the periods of time in which Queen Wasp takes control of the other HiveWings, Katydid always covered for her. In The Hive Queen, Katydid was revealed to be Cricket's mother and not her sister. Katydid is one of the only dragons Cricket cared about, apart from Blue.
While Bombardier believed Cricket had a crush on him, Cricket never had any romantic feelings for him. She described him as awful and arrogant and also commented that there isn’t much difference between his normal self and his “brain-dead”, mind-controlled self. Cricket does say that if she had the power to save the HiveWings from Queen Wasp’s mind control, she would save Bombardier, but perhaps last, after all the others.
Cricket and Blue became close friends throughout The Lost Continent. She and Blue say they are best friends, with Cricket saying she would be Blue's best friend even if she knew every dragon on Pantala. Blue values her friendship and is also in love with her. Cricket does describe him as being one of the most colorful (and handsome) SilkWings she'd ever seen, calling him "beautiful" at least twice. She even repeats in her book that she thinks that his face and wings were handsome. In the The Hive Queen, Cricket looks back to in The Lost Continent when she promises to stay by his side until he wakes up, and describes the moment as romantic. Later on in the book, it is revealed that she returns Blue's romantic feelings, and wonders if he likes her back. She is extremely sad when she has to leave him behind in The Poison Jungle after he is infected with the Breath of Evil.
Lady Scarab comes up in a conversation between Blue and Cricket. In The Hive Queen, we learn that Lady Scarab helped cover for Cricket's egg. Lady Scarab often scolds Cricket, but it is unlikely that she hates Cricket. Lady Scarab is also deeply woven into Cricket’s history. In The Hive Queen, she tells Cricket a lot of useful information, discussing the HiveWing bloodline and reasons why they both were immune to Queen Wasp's mind control.
Sundew hates HiveWings more than Swordtail but seems to be okay with Cricket, acting a bit more friendly and open around her in The Hive Queen and saying she was different. Sundew tends to hide her true emotions, always trying to act tough, but has displayed a certain extent of trust towards Cricket, admitting that she has a "true love". She also cares enough for the HiveWing that she was willing to risk herself to allow Cricket to try to rescue Katydid.
Bumblebee hatched from the egg Cricket rescued from Queen Wasp's poisons, so she and Bumblebee have a naturally close relationship. It seems like Bumblebee has slightly imprinted on Cricket, as she was the first dragon they had met.
All throughout the Lost Continent and the very beginning of The Hive Queen, Cricket believed that Swordtail somewhat disliked her, but changes her mind when Swordtail objects to her comment about them needing find out what was wrong with her and right with the rest of the tribe. However, Swordtail corrects her and says they need to find out what was right with her and wrong with her tribe.
Even though Cadelle is Cricket's grandmother, they don't get along. Cadelle resented Cricket since her hatching and had no wish to raise another child even if the dragonet was her flesh and blood. According to Lady Scarab, Cadelle would rather have drowned Cricket as an egg than raise her as her own dragonet. Cricket recalls being terrified of Cadelle as a small dragonet, and her latest encounter with her grandmother revealed that those feelings have not subsided, even after years apart. Cricket originally believed that Cadelle was her mother, because Katydid was unable to raise Cricket as her mother.
- A cricket is a leaping insect closely related to the katydid and the grasshopper. There are approximately around 2,400 species of crickets in the world. Male crickets are known for their chirping.
- Cricket is the third dragon known to wear glasses or spectacles, the other two being Thoughtful and Lady Scarab. The fourth dragon mentioned to wear glasses or spectacles is her father, Malachite.
- Though trees no longer are widespread on Pantala, Cricket somehow managed to grow a small tree in her terrarium in her botany class, having found the seed on a gathering trip, and not having known what it was until it started growing.
- Cricket is the third dragon seen in the books with scientific aspirations, the other two being Winter and Mastermind.
- Like Winter, Cricket has expressed interest in studying, and learning more about scavengers, which she calls "reading monkeys."
- Like Starflight, She is also smart and a bookworm.
- Cricket is the second character in the series to be depicted on two book covers (The Lost Continent and The Hive Queen), the first being Turtle. She is featured on the Barnes and Noble exclusive version of The Lost Continent.
- Cricket is one of the four dragons to be on a book cover that they are not PoV in, the others being Prince Turtle, Ex-Queen Scarlet, and Princess Anemone.
- However, she is the first dragon to have her full body appear on two covers.
- This also makes her the first dragon to have two different designs, as her black scale pattern and glasses differ between the covers of TLC and THQ.
- However, she is the first dragon to have her full body appear on two covers.
- Cricket is currently the only main character in the Wings of Fire series to wear glasses.
- Cricket is the first HiveWing ever known be immune to Queen Wasp's powers in series, the second being an unnamed male HiveWing in Cricket’s flashback in the first chapter of The Hive Queen. It is later revealed that the Royals are currently immune as well.
- She is the third dragon to have her mouth closed on a book cover, the first being Moonwatcher, and the second being Darkstalker.
- She and Blue are the first two Pantalan dragons shown to be illegally in love, the second two being Treehopper and Tau.
Aphid • Bombardier • Bumblebee • Cadelle • Chafer • Cricket • Dragonfly • Earthworm • Inchworm • Grasshopper • Hawker • Glowworm • Katydid • The Librarian • Lubber • Malachite • Midge • Pinacate • Rootworm • Sandfly • Treehopper • Weevil