An example of Bestia Blutvolk, the Blutvolk in common.
The Blutvolk can be found across Yss in many colourings and ranging in size from the height of an average man, to towering monstrosities capable of tearing a house down. Blutvolk are highly territorial, hunting over a vast range that they have marked. Initially Blutvolk can be found in tight knit packs, but the more success they have, the larger they grow, with pack leaders growing to prodigieous sizes and becoming more far aggressive. This often leads to internal conflict as the lead Blutvolk eliminates challengers and culls weak blood, and it’s not unheard of for them to simply slaughter their whole pack in a rage leaving them as the undisputed master of their territory. In this state the Blutvolk is most problematic, as they fear little and will attack anything and everything within their territory. Villages and towns, travelling caravans of merchants and seasoned soldiers, all learn to fear the lone Blutvolk, as left unchecked the creature will simply carry on reaping the rewards of being the lone apex predator. Those left for a decade or two are taller than a man on horseback, and easily capable of tearing the mounts head clean off with little effort. When they have reached this size it takes a concerted effort to hunt and eliminate, as the lesser arms that most militias and rural hunting parties are equipped with are of little concern to such a beast.
Yss have many tales and myths involving Blutvolk, many detailing heroic hunters slaying the rampaging beast after it had ravaged the land and consumed a number of men, women, and children. One contemporary story within the Grunvale details the tale of a lone Forrester slaying the beast that wiped out his village and family, having stalked the beast for months he finally cornered it and split the creatures head in two after a gruelling blood soaked duel.
Another mythological tale comes from Cathairs distant past detailing the Vargenskung, or the King of Wolves. It details a Blutvolk of mountainous size, as tall as the pines that litter Cathairs hills and mountains, a beast capable of swallowing a man whole, armour and all. The whole of Cathair was its territory, as less would never satiate its hunger. Every creature in Cathair feared it, as nowhere was safe. Eventually the ancient tribes of Cathair banded together and sought allies capable of assisting them. From the mountains came a band of Fyreslayers relishing the chance to kill such a beast, particularly when such a large bounty had been offered. The battle was long and bloody, as these things usually are, and only ended when the woodland spirits themselves chose to attack those defiling their forest. The beast was eventually slain by an enraged treelord thrusting a felled pine through its chest like a spear. The Fyreslayers chose to fight against the spirits as they distrusted such creatures, while the tribesmen knew that laying down their arms would appease them and show they meant no harm to them. The tribeman walked out of the forest, but not a single Fyreslayer. Their fury and pride led them to a pointless end.
There are, as I have mentioned a great many variations of the Blutvolk across Yss, and with a staggering number of local names for this creature, far too many to list here in their entirety. But they all share the same lupine features, from Nyth Mor to the Shénmì Isles. Some may have smoother coats and alternate patternation, but they all share the same behavior patterns. Their actively predatory nature makes them a priority for eradication, because a pack left to their own devices can quickly become tomorrow’s nigh unstoppable rampaging beast.
~ Filib Stjerne, Scholar of Theriology at the Learning Halls of Esel-Din. Author of “The Superior Hunter’s guide to the Beastly Mind. A cultural and psychological treatise on the Gor-kin”