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werewolf but not a werewolf

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Queshire, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. Queshire

    Queshire Auror

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    So for one of my WiPs (of the half dozen I have bouncing around) I'm thinking of having one of my main characters be a girl werewolf, but not just any werewolves, a special werewolf! She's descended from Fenrir from Norse mythology, and is thus a Fenrirkin. To her, werewolves are "common mutts," but I'm not 100% what being Fenrirkin would mean...

    These are what I know for sure;
    -Fenrirkin can smell magic, particularily powerful magic. This is important because she tracks down the protagonist who's carrying a magic macguffin (who has no idea that the macguffi is magic or even that magic exists)
    -In norse mythology Fenrir was STRONG, so strong that only the war god Tyr could handle him as a pup, and the gods seal him out of fear, as such Fenrirkin must be STRONG.
    -The Fenrirkin are bloody pissed at the gods betraying and sealing away their patriarch and do whatever they can to undermine their power. This extends somewhat to a distaste of authority as a whole.

    These are what I'm still considering;
    -Fenrir was sealed by the gods, maybe part of his curse was passed on to his descendents? What if they are TOO STRONG and their sealed from using their full strength.
    -Fenrir was also described as being bloody huge, maybe their true form is a wolf the size of a bus or something?
    -Fenrir kills Odin in ragnarok and bites of Tyr's hand. Maybe they have an ability to tear through magic and spirits?

    What do you guys think? Any questions? Any suggestions?
     
  2. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    That's a fascinating idea, and it sounds like it'd be a lot of fun to play with. I like the idea of the Fenrirkin being sealed, though I also think that perhaps their strength would diminish somewhat through the generations. Less of Fenrir's blood = less strength, obviously. Incidentally, how do the Fenrirkin perpetuate themselves? Do they mate with humans and have wolfish babies? I can only imagine what kind of havoc that would wreak on any mortal mother having to deliver such a child. Or are they all inbred to keep the bloodline pure? That might have some nasty side-effects.
     
  3. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    I think the concept will be stronger if you can find an effect that won't look like "werewolf level 10," especially because smelling magic will seem a little convenient if it's the biggest difference. There's nothing wrong with what you have, but I think it does need a little more.

    Something which occurs to me is that Fenrir is the son of Loki and the giantess Angrbodtha, as well as the brother of Hel and the Midgard snake. Maybe you can find a story-driven concept which comes from his connection to these other powerful figures? A curse or blessing from Hel, for instance, might give your Fenrirkin the berserker-like quality of fighting when they should be dead, or a blessing from Loki the trickster might somehow affect their shapechanging. Then you can find a two-paragraph story about these gods that wraps the package up nicely and makes a strong impression on your readers.
     
  4. Queshire

    Queshire Auror

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    ... I don't get what you mean by werewolf level 10... -_- and frankly what you described strikes me as more video game-ish then what I did.

    In this particular WiP Magic and monsters are mostly hidden. While keeping their bloodline pure is a big deal for them, I don't like the idea of inbreeding. Occasionally they will interbreed with other descendents of Loki or particularly STRONG members of other races that have proved themselves to the Fenrirkin. Also, Fenrir himself would be still around, but has been sealed for the last couple thousands of years.
     
  5. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

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    Werewolf level 10. You know, the same wolf, only bigger. And tougher. I was only suggesting that you try to add a difference that's more conceptual.
     
  6. Queshire

    Queshire Auror

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    Ah~~~ I see. Well, they're still basically werewolves, only better then those "common" werewolves.
     
  7. Interesting fact: Technically speaking, Fenrir was a pure-bred Jotun. (That is, a frost giant.) He just happened to look like a wolf.

    Norse Mythology is fun that way.
     
  8. Jon_Chong

    Jon_Chong Scribe

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    Have you ever read/played Werewolf the Forsaken or Werewolf the Apocalypse? If you have not, it is a pen and paper rpg where you play as werewolves in the defense of the earth from... well, from everything. It is not a happy place. But that is not why I brought it up. The reason why I brought it up is because in Werewolf, the werewolves are capable of shapeshifting in 5 forms. The names change with the game, but the description is similar. There's the man and wolf form, then the near-man(larger, shaggier), near-wolf(direwolves, really) and the war form. The war form is a monster.

    How does this connect to your world? Maybe the garden variety werewolves are only capable of going into the near-man form but these children of Fenrir, with their purer blood are able to assume the full breadth of their shapeshifting prowess. To see a Fenrirkin in warform is to gaze at death, it has been said.
     
  9. shangrila

    shangrila Inkling

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    I was going to suggest something like this as well, although not with that many different forms.

    Since Fenrir is more of a traditional wolf, you could have the Fenrirkin as huge wolves (ala Twilight, though hopefully with better CGI) and the normal werewolves as the man-shaped, Underworld type.
     
  10. Aravelle

    Aravelle Sage

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    Herm...so in a sense they're like demi-gods... I will ask this: What would be the point of freeing Fenrir? Will it give them more power? Are they a lost people, seeking their leader? What benefit will come from it, other than pissing off the Norse gods?

    And if you have the Norse gods, are there gods from other cultures? Or are the Norse the "one true gods"?

    I like what Anders said about Fenrir having actually been a frost giant. I suggest looking into the abilities of theirs [the giants], and seeing if anything's worth the taking.

    Also, it wouldn't hurt to give them some cons and weaknesses.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2012
  11. Caliburn

    Caliburn New Member

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    "I smell macguffin in the wind..."

    Wicked.
    Giant werewolves would be cool.
    Ability to tear through magic/spirits is also cool.

    How impulsive would they be compared to regular werewolves? I imagine them as wiser and more deliberate than the typical werewolf (in examples of Fenrir talking, his demeanour is oddly calm). They could still be ferocious in this case, just with the self-discipline and intelligence to match.

    Didn't know that Fenrir is actually a frost giant. That would be interesting to allude to in the Fenrirkin's abilities.

    Lets see, weaknesses...
    The tale of Fenrir suggests that they should be vulnerable to.... an enchanted boot to the face.....ummmm....
    Since they seemingly excel against magic and the otherworldly, what if they were more susceptible to mundane weaponry?
    Lastly, Fenrir was sealed with a collar, so the Fenrirkin could also have collars that inhibit them in some way (and presumably cannot be removed--until that condition was met where you mentioned them getting huge). Gleipnir was made to be "thin as a silken ribbon", since Fenrir broke through the strongest metal chains. It was made of "six impossible things" which to me is more evocative of its magical nature than any specific thing. Could be interesting.

    EDIT: also, I don't know the tale, but maybe Fenrir sounded so polite because his rage was being restrained by the collar? Maybe that is the case with the Fenrirkin? The collar actually inhibits their aggression, possibly even making them weaker than regular werewolves?
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2012
  12. Jess A

    Jess A Archmage

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    I remember a friend of mine showing me a Japanese anime with a girl who was a goddess - and her true form was an enormous wolf. I don't now much anime and can't tell you the name of it, I'm afraid, but I was intrigued as I love shape-shifters (depending on how they are written).

    I agree that there needs to be a limit on their power. Beings which are too powerful require even more powerful adversaries to make the plot plausible. Otherwise it's just 'oops, killed your army in two seconds'. When everyone becomes Superman x 100, it becomes silly in my opinion, but that's my view. So as Caliburn said above, perhaps a collar (or wrist bracelets if the paws don't become too small for them to slip off) inhibiting the strength of their abilities might be a good idea - or diluted blood makes them more powerful than regular werewolves, but nothing ridiculous. There needs to be a limit on abilities - even something as simple as them tiring quickly and needing to sleep for long periods of time. For example. Perhaps shape-changing takes a lot out of your WIP, or she needs something specific to enable her to transform. Or they become stronger as they get older, like some wizards in some books.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2012
  13. Ghost

    Ghost Inkling

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    It might have been Spice and Wolf. I like the idea of the wolves getting stronger as they get older, Little Storm Cloud. People do that all the time with vampires because they try to make their vampires cool and nearly unkillable. I'd rather see a 1000-year-old giant werewolf than a 1000-year-old vampire who zips around and bites people.
     
  14. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    *smiles guiltily at the 1000-year-old vampire comment* I've written one of those. Though he only bit one person in the story, and he died shortly after. Got his throat torn out by a werewolf who was saving her mate. XD
     
  15. Ghost

    Ghost Inkling

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    Oh, it's fine. It's just that vampires get the edge over werewolves very often. Sometimes it seems like werewolves are only around to make vampires look cooler. That your 1000-year-old vamp gets taken out by a werewolf takes it away from the very thing I was complaining about.
     
  16. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    Indeed. Makes me think of the Hugh Jackman movie Van Helsing, in which the only thing that can kill Dracula is a werewolf.
     
  17. Queshire

    Queshire Auror

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  18. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    In the story wherein I wrote the werewolf killing the vampire, weres and vamps actually coexisted in harmony, along with mages and a few normal humans. This was just a special case of the vampire attacking and nearly killing the werewolf's normal-human boyfriend (while tripping out on mage blood, the vampire equivalent of LSD), driving the werewolf to kill the vamp in order to save her boyfriend's life. The vampire in question was a total nutcase. :/
     
  19. Jess A

    Jess A Archmage

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    It was indeed Spice and Wolf. An intriguing show; I'd like to catch more of it.

    Somebody gave me some reputation for this thread but my profile won't share who. Thank you to that person!
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2012
  20. Caliburn

    Caliburn New Member

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    It was me :) I thought it would say who.
     
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