Werewolves 101 (according to me)
They are simply humans with the ability to shift into a werewolf or wolf. To some, its the other way around. The human is actually their mask, or camouflage. It is what keeps them safe from man (who they believe are the real enemies), though not all werewolves believe in this.
Werewolves have two basic forms, the feral (wolf) form, which is the natural wolf to blend in better with nature and their ancestors, then there is the anthro form, which is the bipedal werewolf form.
Werewolves take pride in their heritage and prefer to live in the wild like their ancestors, the wolves, do. Some prefer to live in packs, others on their own. They need to stay safe from humanity and their identities must be kept secret.
According to very old legends, werewolves used to be regular wolves, who were the guardians of men. Even though they loved men, they envied them and their ability to walk and speak and do all the things they never could.
So wolf stood up, and became man, and mimicked them, and behaved like them, but it wasn't enough. They became so jealous they prayed to the moon and to mother nature, asking her to grant them the ability to be human (this is where the moon myth comes from). Finally, they got their wish and thus, the werewolf was born. A creature who could take the shape of both human and beast, and be both in harmony.
After a while, man became jealous of the werewolf's strength and abilities and cast them out, which is why now the werewolves no longer associate with humans. Thousands of years past, and the humans forgot about the wolves, and began hunting and killing them for meat and for pleasure. This angered the wolves and caused to attack, but realizing that the abilities they wished for came with a price, and caused the humans who were bitten to become like them. They also realized that their children were born human. Every gift must come with a price.
The wolves retreated more into the wild, cutting themselves off completely from the human society and man grew to be the dominant creature on the planet.
Now in modern days, the werewolves continue to stay hidden in the wild, living as both man and beast. Some live closer to civilization and even in it, in secret. And some wolves (even the ones we see in the wild) don't even know they have the ability to shift into a human. Some do, some don't, but all are connected to each other.
Differences Between Werewolves and Wolves
* Can walk upright like a human, as well as on all fours
* Body is built more like a humans and matches their anatomy for both male and female
* Can speak human tongue clearly (their voice does not change with the transformation). This is harder but possible in their feral (wolf) form
* Paws have a more human hand shape to them and they can grab, point, gesture, even play a musical instrument!
* When standing (bipedal like a human), they can easily reach up to 10 feet tall
* Very strong muscular structure, and obviously bigger than regular wolves (even on all fours)
* Their faces can have character and personality. For instance, regular wolves can't wink, frown or smile
* Werewolves can take the form of a normal every day sized wolf (fural form) to blend in, though they are still larger than an average wolf
Differences Between Werewolves and Humans
* Can heal extremely fast
o Cuts, scrapes and bruises heal within hours, very small cuts such as paper-cuts within minutes
o Large gashes, gunshot wounds and serious stabs heal within a day
o Unfortunately, loss of fingers and limbs do not heal
* Has super strength; can easily lift a small car and toss it, jump very high, and run fast (even in human form)
* Heightened senses; hearing, sight, smell, etc.
* Incredible night vision, even while in human form
* Ages normally, like a human, does not have immortality
* Cannot be killed unless the brain is disconnected from the body, the heart is physically removed from the body or burnt with fire
* Silver, crosses, holy water, etc., cannot harm a werewolf
* Werewolves have control over their shifts, the full moon has no effect
* They are not mindless monsters controlled by lust for blood or have savage animal instincts like in the movies, they are simply humans with the ability to shape shift into a wolf or werewolf. Their human mind has complete control of the wolf. (Although blood can trigger desires. They are, after all, carnivores)
* Werewolves don't have gory transformations like the movies, the transformations are quick and sometimes painful, unless they do it often. The longer you go without shifting, the more painful the transformation is
How to Become a Werewolf
You are either born or 'reborn'.
It isn't a curse. More like a disease, but then again, not really. It's considered more to be a blessing. The only way you are turned or 'reborn' is to, of course, be bit by a werewolf. But, this not just any bite, it needs to be a strong bite, giving the chance of plenty saliva (or venom, which carries the gene) to be mixed well with your own blood.
Turning involves biting down hard and allowing plenty of saliva to seep on an area where the blood flow to the heart is fast and constant, such as the neck or wrist. It takes a few seconds to reach the heart from there, but once it does, it takes about a minute to completely circulate through a humans body. Usually before a bite, a werewolves mouth fills up with the amount needed, causing them to almost drool. This usually ensures a better chance of a successful transformation.
The werewolf will make a deep incision with his fangs--allowing the saliva to move freely from his/her mouth--closing their lips around the wound to keep it contained. This can be difficult if the human moves around in pain too much.
As this is happening, their werewolf genes will mix with yours. It takes a moment after it cycles a few times--assuming the process worked--until the transformation begins, starting with the bite wound completely healing. Then the human will make a full transformation to their default form (anthro), and the first time is always the most painful.
If no transformation happens, it means either not enough venom was given, or their blood wasn't healthy. If this happens, a transformation will never happen, and that person is now incapable of changing. A bite after that would be ineffective, and the human would most likely carry that scar for the rest of their life.
This process is still dangerous because if done carelessly or incorrectly (such as too much blood loss), it can kill a human.
When you first shift, all of your senses are turned on, and are very overwhelming. During the first few months after being turned, you may have certain urges to get on all fours, sniff things, howl, growl, and even have a craving for all things bloody. At first, controlling your shifting capabilities can be difficult, but once you get used to them, you learn what turns them on or off, as well as your control over your senses. Over time, you will take complete control over all your abilities and of course, change at will.
The moon has no power over your transformations. However, in the presence of the full moon, werewolves feel much more comfortable and are more venerable to changing.
It is also tradition around full moon for werewolf packs to change and hunt like their animal ancestors.
Werewolves from birth are usually much stronger than those that are 'reborn' because obviously not all the genes transfer from the sire.
If you were attacked or bitten, it won't be enough to change you, which means that all transformations are usually deliberate. They can't 'accidentally' change someone, which means people are usually chosen or volunteer to become a werewolf. If it did happen with a simple bite or a scratch, you'd think we'd have an epidemic on our hands.
This also means you can't become a werewolf through sexual intercourse.
Those who were born as werewolves don't reach full 'wolf maturity' until they reach puberty, which is somewhere between the age of 11 and 14. When they reach that point, their body starts to change rapidly, their urges to transform start to show more and more, almost uncontrollably. At this point, they may only be able to partially shift, showing maybe only fur and fangs.
Just like normal teenagers deal with hormones and changes, werewolves deal with them as well, only they are intensified. The desire to mate, changes in voices, changes in physical size, and of course, the desire to hunt and feed (which can be easily controlled by ones will).
As soon they become aware of the source and understand to control it, they finally are able to change completely to a werewolf (both their feral and anthro form).
Werewolf packs live in groups together, usually in small rural areas. They can be any number from 4 to up to 100 with a hierarchy. The majority of werewolves live and blend in with normal humans, but they do not separate too far from each other. They have jobs, go to school, pay taxes, and live like normal law abiding citizens (for the most part).
Some werewolves packs live absolutely traditional, meaning they never shift to their human skin. They live in their feral forms all the time, dwelling in the mountains and forests with real wolves. This practice is long but extinct, but there are still werewolves out there who prefer to avoid the costly lifestyle that comes with being a human.
Packs are composed of several status' of leadership. Alpha male, beta male, the mid-rank, and omega. Each part is significant and important in the success of the pack.
Roles in a Pack
These roles are done in a traditional way, the way their great ancestor wolves did it. Of course, with modern human lifestyles, they are slightly different. These roles in the pack are strict, but not permanent, they can always change. The higher the rank, the more in control you are. In a wolf pack there is no equal.
In order to become the alpha male (or pack leader), you must have been born a werewolf. Most of the time the alpha is chosen according to age or popular vote. If there is a dispute other males display a ritual battle to prove your strength. Whoever walks away alive or less wounded becomes the leader. It is a dangerous game. Most of the time, modern packs discuss leadership in a civil matter.
Once you are nominated alpha, you and your mate (if there is one) are the primary decision makers of the pack. The alpha female can also give orders and has authority over all except the alpha male. They call the shots, address the issues, make changes in leadership roles, and asses threats to the pack.
The beta is second in charge, and answers only to the alpha, and has dominance over all under him. He is the one put in charge when the alpha is gone, or when extra help is needed in governing a peaceful pack. He dominates over the mid-ranking members (or subordinates).
These make up for the general population of the pack, male and females. They obey and help the pack when needed. They are especially helpful for numbers during hunting.
The lowest ranking member(s) (can be male or female, or both). They aren't often treated with respect. They usually spend time trying to avoid contact with high ranked members and try to avoid drawing attention to themselves. They are actually lower rank then children. They must obey and yield to all the other adults living in the pack.
This rank is chosen by majority, and is usually given to the most unpopular members of the pack. They aren't even allowed to breed unless the alpha gives permission. Even with the harsh position, it doesn't mean they are worthless. Every member in the pack has a purpose.
Identifying a Pack
It's easy to spot a werewolf pack if you know what to look for:
* Big houses with multiple families living in them; brothers, sisters, grandparents, cousins, uncles, aunts, siblings, etc.
* They disappear around the full moon to go and do ritual moon runs and hunting.
* All are usually shy and reserved, and very rarely hang out with normal human families. They pretty much shun being social with humans all together. Even children are advised to only make friends and hang out with wolves of other packs, though some packs are more relaxed with their rules.
Marriage and Relationships
In addition to leading the pack and various other responsibilities, the alpha male can choose a mate (wife) from any eligible female in the pack, as long as she has reached maturity. The females usually have no say in the matter, especially if its the alpha male. Tradition is that if they are chosen by the alpha, they must oblige or suffer a severe punishment, but most packs aren't so primitive.
The main function for a female in a relationship is to give birth to plenty of strong pure-bred children and to help raise them. She can also assist the leader in any duties he allows her. Most, if not all marriages between pack leaders and their wives are very loving, long lasting relationships.
Mid-rank members also have special relationships. Marriages are actually normal. Ceremony, reception, and honeymoon. Of course, werewolves have other own unique traditions.
Mid-rank members can marry any member they wish, as long as they aren't already spoken for, and as long as they aren't pure human. (Dating or falling in love with a human is strictly against the rules and can lead to severe punishment.)
Females are treated with the utmost respect in a pack. They are considered "goddesses". The males feel very dominant and protective over their females, whether they are in a relationship with them or not. Females can give orders as long as its not the alpha male or female. They can also hold high responsibilities in a pack.
There is no homosexuality of any kind in a wolf pack. Gender "roles" are set in stone naturally from birth. Their packs are family centered, with mothers and fathers and children as the most important unit. Having a mate of the opposite sex to breed with is crucial for their survival.
Traditionally, sexual intercourse is done for the specific purpose of bringing young ones into the world, and only the alpha male and female have the children in the pack. But, in the world of humans, that is difficult to do, so sexual intercourse (like human nature) is both recreational and for creating offspring.
When wolves mate, they can do it in any form (anthro, feral or human), though most prefer to do it in human form. And of course, its as normal as anyone would think it is.
Just like regular wolves, werewolves have cycles of heat, in which they have a strong desire to mate. This usually happens only with the females, but with most werewolves, the men have cycles of heat too, which occur once a year, usually in the winter time. This heat cycle normally lasts five to ten days.
Females can get pregnant in any form. Just like real wolves, they can have a small litter (usually two or three, but no more than four), which are born human.
When it comes to the actual birthing process, some find it it is best to do it in human or anthro form because of the size of the children. Birthing is painful (especially with multiples) as it is with humans, but werewolves cannot die during childbirth, so the fear of getting pregnant regularly and having large families is eliminated.
A pregnancy for a female werewolf is shorter than the 9 months a human would normally have. Werewolves grow rapidly the first few years, so the gestation can be as short as 3 months or sometimes longer depending on how many babies the female is carrying.
If werewolves and humans breed, the werewolf gene can sometimes transfer to the unborn child, but it is rare. This can be dangerous if the female is human. If the child does get the werewolf gene, then her pregnancy will be the 3 month gestation (like a werewolf's), which can harm both the mother and the baby. A humans body isn't equipped for such a quick gestation, so a miscarriage is likely to happen. And also like werewolves, the possibility of having multiples increases, which puts the human mother at even more risk, but it is almost impossible for human female to successfully birth multiples.
They are loved and adored by all the members of the pack. They are born human and they are raised like normal humans, but still respected and loved like part of the family. They discover the ability to shift later in life (around 3 years of age), but don't reach full wolf maturity until puberty.
Unlike human children, werewolves grow much faster than humans, in fact, they grow 5 times faster than humans, but slow down when they get to be the size of a toddler. From there, they age normally.
Even though they aren't the real parents, the entire pack has say in how a child is raised.