Werewolves of Shudderwood
Dorzhanevs or Broken Ones: These lycanthropes settle in remote or isolated territories, building small provincial communities near the wood’s edge. For the most part, they pose as simple farmers or trappers, occasionally traveling to larger communities to sell or trade for goods. They live and hunt in small packs, targeting lone travelers or those who stray from larger groups. Physically smaller than the other tribes, the Broken Ones transform into red wolves. Their pack structure is matriarchal, and their current tribe leader is the druid Cybrisa Dorzhanev.
Jezeldans or Demon Wolves: The smallest and most recently formed pack in the Shudderwood, the Demon Wolves are an amalgam of newly afflicted werewolves, whose pitiful existence is typically scorned by most natural lycanthropes, and exiles from other tribes, all worshipers of the demon lord Jezelda, Mistress of the Hungry Moon. Their current tribe leader, an anti-paladin named Adimarus Ionacu, was once in fact an afflicted werewolf who willingly contracted the disease in devotion to his demonic patron. As a boon, Jezelda transformed him into a natural lycanthrope, and bade him convert more werewolves to her worship. To date, Adimarus’s missionary zeal has been quite successful; the black-furred Jezeldans are one of the fastest-growing tribes in the region, and may soon rise as the new lords of the wood.
Mordrinacht or Silverhides: The Mordrinacht, colloquially known as the Silverhides for their gray-white fur, are more aggressive than the Broken Ones, yet possess more composure and subtlety than the other tribes. The Mordrinacht rarely form standard packs, instead living much of their lives as solitary individuals or lone wolves. Only in times of great importance do they unite and form organized packs. More so than all the others, the Mordrinacht have been successful at blending in with normal humans and living secretly within their communities, with a few bold individuals even settling in some of Ustalav’s major cities. Descended from those afflicted with lycanthropy by the ancient high priest of Desna, the Mordrinacht have long gathered at the Stairs of the Moon to pay homage to the spirit of their ancestor, the Vilkacis. It is no secret that the Silverhides’ current leader, Mathus Mordrinacht, has had designs on the position of packlord over all the packs of the Shudderwood for some time.
Prince’s Wolves: The Prince’s Wolves came into existence in a long-forgotten incident that occurred late in the Shining Crusade. The Whispering Tyrant discovered that the self-styled “Prince” of Varno had decided to join the Shining Crusade. In retaliation the Tyrant kidnapped the Count’s family and had them bitten by lycanthropes until all were infected and then he let them loose to cause misery to their families and friends. Much to his disgust, the new werewolves immediately sought out the Shining Crusade and served the cause loyally throughout the rest of the war. They were granted a share of the Shudderwood in exchange for their past services.
The Prince’s Wolves maintain a tight pack structure and spend much of their time traveling in small family groups, performing or pickpocketing to support themselves before moving on to do it again somewhere else. The Prince’s Wolves transform into wolves with brown or gray fur, and their current tribe leader is a roguish scoundrel named Rhakis Szadro.
Vollensag or Primals: The smallest of the Shudderwood’s tribes, the Vollensag are also the most homogenous, as they are all descended from the ancient Kellid tribes who once inhabited these lands before they were driven out by the invading Chellish tribes. At present, less than 30 Vollensag remain, settled deep in the woods and traveling in small migratory hunting packs, living as much as their ancestors did. Despite their declining numbers, the Primal’s ability to transform into large gray dire wolves makes them an influential force among the wolves of the wood. Until recently, the Vollensag tribe leader, Kvalca Sain, was packlord over all the wolves of the Shudderwood. Her recent assassination at the hands of Mathus Mordrinacht and the Whispering Way has thrown all of the tribes of the Shudderwood into disarray, not just the Vollensag themselves.