creatures of flesh and spirit whose duty is to protect the world from creatures of the Shadow Realm. Werewolves call themselves Uratha the First Tongue word for “the People”
While several alternate creation myths exist, most Uratha accept that the death of Father Wolf is the true account of their origin. According to the story, long ago the world was a paradise known as Pangaea, where the spirit and material worlds mingled freely. Balance was kept by Father Wolf, a being of great power who patrolled the borders between the worlds. Luna, spirit of the moon, was impressed by his strength and wisdom and, in her human form, took him as her lover. From their union the Uratha were born: part spirit and part flesh, part human and part wolf.
As the years went by, some of Father Wolf’s children saw that he had become weak, and to prevent him failing in his duties rose against him and killed him, intending to take his place. Their rash action had unforeseen consequences: the death of Father Wolf raised a barrier between the worlds, making it impossible for any being to cross except at certain places. Pangaea was lost, and gradually became the world we know today. Luna, stricken with grief, cursed all Uratha, though those who participated in Father Wolf’s death later swore an oath to her to carry on Father Wolf’s tasks, regaining some of her favour – but costing them the enmity of the spirit world. These Uratha became known as Urdaga the Forsaken. Those who did not participate in his death also did not swear the oath to Luna; they are much more numerous in the modern world, and are known as Anshega the Pure. They seek to destroy the Forsaken in retribution for Father Wolf’s death.
Any human with Uratha heritage may undergo the First Change at some time in their life, becoming a werewolf, though what triggers the change is unknown. Most Uratha join a tribe, a group of more-or-less like-minded werewolves who follow the same totem, one of the great wolf spirits known as the Firstborn. The Forsaken also have an auspice or role, linking them to one of Luna’s phases.
Unlike the werewolves of folk tales and superstition, Uratha may change at any time into various forms between man and wolf, though Forsaken do find this easier when the phase of the moon matches their auspice.
Uratha are fierce territorial predators who feel the compulsion to hunt. Many have trouble containing their aggression, hindering their ability to live normal human lives. Like wolves, the Uratha form packs in order to hunt more efficiently and better guard their territory.
Uratha are also spiritual creatures, able to channel spirit energy, which they call Essence, to make use of supernatural powers called gifts to aid them in their hunts. They also possess an instinctive (if rudimentary) understanding of the First Tongue, the language spoken by their ancestors and still used by spirits (it is possibly also the original language of all humans). Many Uratha learn to speak the First Tongue fluently.