"The ability to sustain life on earth is shrinking
In perfect unison with rising population.
Soon, half of all species will be lost to climate change
And ecological collapse due to human activity.
Thus, we either reduce our race voluntarily
Or nature will do it for us,
And She will be fucking brutal!"

—Cradle of Filth, Suffer Our Dominion

Garou is a term used by the werewolves to identify their race and culture. The term is used nearly interchangeably with Garou Nation.

In the Middle Kingdom, the corresponding term is Langren (Wolf People) or Ookami Senshi (Wolf Soldiers).

Garou adhere to the Litany, a code which depicts the laws of the Garou Nation. The place of each individual Garou is dictated by the moon phase under which he or she is born. There are five Auspices that mandate a Garou's function within werewolf society.


Rank is a fundamental part of Garou society, and the fullest manifestation of the hierarchical nature of werewolves.

  • Rank 1 - Cliath
  • Rank 2 - Fostern
  • Rank 3 - Adren
  • Rank 4 - Athro
  • Rank 5 - Elder
  • Rank 6 - Legend

Rank measures a werewolf’s station among other Garou, and it is determined by an individual’s renown totals — though the exact requirements are different for each auspice. All Garou begin at Rank 1 and may evolve to Rank 5 with time and effort - but only the wisest and most powerful among their kind will attain Rank 6.

A werewolf fresh from its First Change has no rank at all - it is merely a pup or cub. Many such pups go through training and preparation before their Rite of Passage, though the length and quality varies depending on the tribe and individual sept.

After the ordeal of the Rite of Passage, the young werewolf has proven his or her right and worth to join the Garou Nation in their war, and so earns the first rank, that of Cliath. With this success comes a small amount of Renown.

The Curse

Frenzy isn't the only effect that Rage has on Garou, and it is not at all the worst. Other animals, especially humans, can sense the predator in a werewolf, and they shy from him. Whenever a Garou's Rage exceeds a human's Willpower, the human will avoid contact with the Garou as much as possible. This avoidance may consist of crossing the street to avoid “that weirdo” or even running in fear.

Wolves are also subject to this dread, and most natural wolves will avoid Garou whenever possible.

Garou call this phenomenon the "Curse", for it makes normal relationships with humans or wolves all but impossible. Garou cannot usually maintain families among humans or wolves, as their nature as predators makes even their own Kin uncomfortable. Only among other werewolves can the Garou find true, honest companionship — and the logical result of such relationships is prohibited by the Litany.

In Seattle

As it stands now, Seattle is dominated by five packs: three victorious Pure packs who stand astride the city and two Forsaken packs who struggle to mitigate the depredations of the Pure and keep the city’s spirits in balance.

The Pure packs — which include the most influential werewolves in the area — are:

  • Vision of Flame: The Vision of Flame pack is technically based outside of Seattle, in the more socially and religiously conservative inland areas of Bellevue, Tacoma, and Kirkland. However, they are more than happy to lend their aid to the other Pure packs when need be, especially if this involves the opportunity to kill Forsaken. As its name indicates, the Vision of Flame pack is primarily composed of Fire-Touched Pure, though at least one of them is a mighty Predator King. The Vision of Flame’s personal belief system is a weird mix of Evangelical Christian and Werewolf animism. Unlike most Fire-Touched, they are not generally interested in accepting converts from among the Uratha; the Forsaken are too corrupt to ever achieve grace.
  • Old Gold: The Old Gold pack is mostly Ivory Claws, but following a vision from Silver Wolf the pack leader admitted a young Predator King as well. The Old Gold pack is primarily concerned with the human infrastructure of Seattle to make the city more comfortable for the Pure. Old money and pure predator aggression doesn’t go as far in this city as it does some, but the Ivory Claws have managed to accumulate a lot of wealth, which they use to buy off cops and politicians when they can. They have had more luck with Seattle’s organized crime and exert a great deal of control over that system.
  • Dead Moon: Every system has its outsiders. In the system of Seattle’s Pure, the Dead Moon are the Pure who just don’t belong: a young Ivory Claw with a grudge against one of Old Gold’s plutocrats, a fervent pagan Fire-Touched who can’t stand the Christian “taint” to Vision of Flame’s spiritual practices, a brutal Predator King shamed by the unjustified killing of one of her fellows, and several recent Uratha converts. Dead Moon is the most active in directly and personally persecuting the Uratha in an effort to drive the Forsaken packs out of Seattle forever.

Seattle’s Forsaken are on the run. The Pure are closing in, and they fear that when the time comes for a final confrontation, they will be forced to either flee their home or die defending it.

  • The Sea Wolves: Neither wolves nor humans are aquatic creatures, and the Uratha have always looked askance at packs that adopt an “unnatural” way of life. However, the Sea Wolves’s very eccentricity might be what has saved them. Seattle is a city riddled with water: Lake Washington on the East, Puget Sound and all its meanderings, coves, and bays to the West, and Union Bay and Portage Bay and Lake Union right down the middle. This pack lives on a barge, owns a small fleet of speedboats, and has dedicated themselves to balancing the spirits of the sea. The Sea Wolves have survived because they have such an efficient escape mechanism available to them: they can just take to the sea and motor away.
  • Who’s Left: This pack takes its name from a grim joke (“war doesn’t determine who’s right — it determines who’s left”). They are a motley bunch of Uratha, mostly survivors from the other Uratha packs who have been slaughtered by the Pure, though they also count a few recent recruits among their number. As a result, they are unusually large for a werewolf pack — eight members — and may be on the verge of dividing into two groups.

Are you familiar with the networking site ‘Voicebox?’ It’s one of a number of small tech startups that have popped up in the wake of the social networking boom, trying to get in on the action. Like so many others, it’s building its foundations in Seattle. If it plays its cards right, it could be the next Facebook. One of my Kinfolk relatives learned enough about company law to follow the trail of ownership. Eventually, much of the startup’s funding comes from Sunburst, a software company ultimately owned by Pentex.

I was out on the West Coast in the summer of 2012 when I received a call from Broken Staff, the younger brother of the Stargazer who mentored me. He’d learned I was in the area and invited me to come visit him in Seattle.

Even if I’d wanted to I couldn’t deny such an invitation. Seattle is not as rainy as pop culture suggests. Their summers are actually rather mild and warm and the city’s climate is pleasant at that time, as I learned first-hand. Broken Staff, who is practically an uncle to me, was waiting for me at Sea-Tac and we took the light rail into the city proper.

Seattle lives up to the hype of a city of the future between the affordable mass transit, technology-oriented companies, and Earth-friendly business concerns. The biggest concentration of Glass Walkers in the northwest is hard at work within various enterprises, keeping them honest and turning what resources they can to benefit Gaia and the Garou Nation. Garou of almost every tribe have found Seattle palatable enough for a city and our efforts have made sure there’s plenty of light to go with the city’s share of darkness.

We arrived in the middle of a protest at the Uwajimaya Village. Apparently the Uwajimaya company wanted to expand their shopping and residential complex, leading to opposition from locals who didn’t want to see the neighborhood reshaped any more than it already had been. Things grew heated because of accusations that a manager of the complex had hacked the Voicebox accounts of some of the protestors and presented damaging private information that had ruined their reputations.

I was not familiar with the site and while asking a couple of people off to the side what happened, I met a Glass Walker blogger named Melissa Press-Pass who was writing up the protest for her website. According to her, the Voicebox website was likely the guilty party and if I wanted to know more she could get me into sort of a ‘town hall’ meeting hosted by a nearby sept. I was too intrigued not to get involved and Broken Staff came along to find out what was going on.

The meeting was held in Capitol Hill, an entertainment and nightlife center of the city, at a Walker-owned coffee house called the ‘Coast of Java.’ The crowd appeared to be mostly Glass Walkers and Bone Gnawers with a light sprinkling of other tribes including a surprising number of Wendigo given the location. The crowd mostly consisted of Garou from the Menagerie Caern in Discovery Park and the Little Water Caern, which is located in a South Lake Union high rise.

A Glass Walker Philodox from the Little Water Caern, Jean Broadcast-Depth, led the meeting. She put the call out to ask local Garou to assist in an impending investigation into Voicebox centered on their office in South Lake Union.

The website, she explained to us, was officially focused around bringing people together through the medium of discussion groups much in the same way some sites do it through common interests. This made it a natural fit for a lot of major protest groups, and had been used as an alternative to Facebook for a lot of event planning.

However, Jean had reason to believe that the site also intentionally directed disruptive elements to good causes. She suspected that Voicebox’s influence in an incident where elements of Occupy Seattle used the ‘People’s Mic’ to interrupt their own speakers and sow discord. The website’s security was also selectively dismal, causing some private conversations — all the more damning out of context — to appear on public pages while others vanish into the electronic ether behind inscrutable ‘censorship’ filters. Jean and her pack asked for Garou to help them get into the Voicebox offices and see what they can do to disrupt their efforts and retrieve information to use later.

The plan was to cause a disruption at the office so someone could sneak in and get a look at their files. A Wendigo in attendance asked why they just didn’t hack in. She explained with some embarrassment that the company’s security was not only watertight against everyone up to and including Anonymous — unless a leak suited them — but was backed up by unidentified spiritual assistance.

Broken Staff and I volunteered, as did most of the Glass Walkers and Bone Gnawers in attendance and a couple of young glory-seeking Wendigo.

A few days of preparation later, we gathered at the Little Water Caern. As Broken Staff and I made our way towards the target we could feel the Gauntlet thickening around us like stepping out into high humidity. The concentration of human businesses, many of them Internet and technology based, couldn’t help but feed the Weaver and thicken the local Gauntlet.

Jean split us up into three teams. One team would cause a commotion outside and two more would go inside where one would cause more trouble to distract security while the rest of us moved in to get at the files we needed. Broken Staff was on the team outside while I was on the retrieval team, being what one of them referred to as ‘the hitter.’

We trickled in a few at a time, pretending to be there for the various companies in the building, while the protest they arranged ramped up outside. About the time police were to be called, the second team got into motion, pulling fire alarms and committing acts of random vandalism in a few different offices.

Employees in the building, not at all used to this sort of carnage, ran for the exits in a near-panic. Security guards from all over the building scrambled every which way trying to get ahead of the vandals and we managed to get into the Voicebox cubicle farm. We made a big show of directing employees towards the exits while looking around for their private files.

The place smelled, not only of faint Wyrm taint but also of rotten food. A couple of the Walkers on the team ducked into offices with fetish USB drives to steal information. That left me with a Bone Gnawer Ragabash named Grabby-Hands, so the two of us checked the corner office that was the source of the odd smells.

A skinny woman sat at the computer, staring dispassionately at the screen. Her hands rested on the keyboard, unmoving, as the computer appeared to work itself. Next to her on the desk sat four bags of O’Tolley’s takeout, left by co-workers but untouched. She turned and looked at us, her body oddly clean for someone in a place like this.

Grabby feigned concern and rushed over to help her out of the office. The woman refused to move and explained how important it was that she be allowed to continue her work. Her voice reminded me of the hum of an A/C unit and Grabby’s eyes glazed over. A fog settled in my own mind. I reflected on koans to snap myself out of it. I shook the Gnawer’s shoulder and woke him. He jumped back, panic in his eyes, and his body tensed for a moment.

“She did something, I can’t shift,” he gasped, backing towards the door to yell for help.

Not being as reliant on my other forms to engage enemies, I moved in to get her away from the computer. I grabbed the woman and physically pulled her out of the seat but she calmly laid both hands on me and a massive electrical charge hit like a live wire had fallen on me. Next thing I knew I was laying on the floor looking up at her standing over me with a lazy, curious look.

A series of gunshots rang out from the doorway, bullets ripping through her and splattering the wall. She staggered and as she turned around to face one of the Glass Walkers with us I could see tiny filaments crisscrossing the bullet holes and weaving together over the wound. I swept her legs out from under her and sprung to my feet. Another Walker at her computer yanked the fetish flash drive out, tossed it to me, and shouted for me to step sideways (since I can get by without a mirror) and get it out of there.

I made a run for the stairs, not wanting to step across into an empty Umbral reflection if I could help it. I heard more commotion downstairs, presumably from the vandalism team. Rather than wade through the chaos, I closed my eyes, put the USB drive in my mouth, and focused on stepping sideways. The Gauntlet was even thicker than I’d expected and it took a few agonizing minutes to push through to the Umbra. I shifted to Lupus in mid-air to better handle the landing, as the building was too new and not yet important enough yet to exist on both sides of the Gauntlet. The flash drive, a sturdy model for just this reason, was already held in my muzzle.

As I turned to leave the empty space I saw the programmer appearing in the Umbra. In the distance, Pattern Spiders skittered closer as if summoned. I didn’t stick around to question how she was able to follow me. I took off on all fours for the Little Water Caern, moving at the best speed I could manage. I didn’t slow down until I was close to the caern. I stopped and returned to Homid form and thanked Gaia she hadn’t followed me.

All I saw were the buildings of Seattle’s Umbra and flashes of light coming off the Weaver webs like dew caught in a spider’s web. I slipped into the Umbral representation of the building where someone from the caern was waiting for me. I gave him the data and we stepped back across.

I told them what happened while I caught my breath and they started decrypting the data. The others returned, more or less in one piece. I took a moment to track down Jean while we were waiting for results on the flash drives. I asked the obvious question: “Does the Weaver have any real stake in Voicebox?”

“No,” she said with the weary sigh of having heard this question before. “She benefits, but no more from Voicebox than any of those other services. Honestly, slightly less given how much instability it causes.”

I admit I wondered if making Voicebox more stable would be worse in the long run, then. But our goal was finding something that could be used to bring it down altogether so I kept any further commentary to myself. I found a quiet spot in the corner to meditate so I don’t know how much longer it was before Broken Staff was gently shaking my shoulder to get my attention.

Jean and the rest of her pack explained that the prize was a beta version of the new website, complete with new privacy policies and security software. The new policies made it harder to prevent online harassment, sold users’ personal information to companies that were all known Pentex subsidiaries — the final confirmation some needed as to Voicebox’s true masters — and also gave the company legal loopholes to withhold information from police in the case of child predators using the site. Melissa started emailing contacts of hers to leak the information and I asked Jean what that would accomplish.

“It should do a lot of damage to the company, although I imagine they’ll find the funds to weather the storm. It will buy us time to find ways around their defenses for the long haul. Maybe we can find ways to exploit their ties to the rest of Pentex.”

I nodded with sincere approval and then asked her about the obvious interest the Weaver’s brood had taken with the place. After a moment’s thought during which her face registered confusion, frustration, and a hint of defeat, she told me they’d do what they could.

Forest for the trees, cub. Forest for the trees.

Five-Rounds-Rapid, a Glass Walker Theurge, reports in: The programmer encountered during the raid on the Voicebox office is colloquially called a Drone, a human with a Weaver-spirit bound up in her much like a fomor. They’re as hard to kill as we are, can strengthen the local Gauntlet, and to our embarrassment can do a lot of the same technology-tricks that we can. Sometimes a human falls to the seductive song of the Weaver and is ‘welcomed’ into the fold.

Incidents like the Voicebox raid reinforce irrational fears that the Weaver and Wyrm work together. Sometimes an employee of a technological company that’s already a thorn in our sides will lose himself to Weaver-song and be remade into a Drone. It’s becoming more common now that the Wyrm’s forces are getting more cutting-edge technology. We’ve yet to see anything to seriously suggest that it’s more than just coincidence at the moment.

Of course, try telling the other tribes that.


Not only do all Garou have names, but they all have multiple names, and collect more as they get older.

As an example, a Fenrir lupus was called "Ice Eyes" as a pre-Change/pre-Rite cub, "Burning Cold" as a Cliath, "Hears-the-Other-Side" as a Fostern, "Calls Tigers" as an Adren, and finally, "Winter's Grief" as an Athro. And that's not even going into the possibility of earning Renown-related deed names!

Of course they only list all their names and deeds and such during very formal encounters and situations, and use the most recent or applicable or familiar name during other situations, depending on what exactly is going on.


Every Garou has a pre-change name. For a homid, this is something like "Joe Bloggs", or a nickname.

For a lupus, this is something in the lupine language of howls and sniffs and it cannot be completely expressed in any other way, much like "The Spirit with No Name" does not have a name that can be expressed outside of the lupine language. I'm trying to remember which book clarifies this principle; it might be RT: revised, or it might be PGtG. It's essentially what the wolf feels in their heart and might translate to "The way that the light dances on the water during the spring".

For a metis, it is likely to be in the Garou tongue, though may be lupine if they grew up among lupuses, and homid if they grew up among homids.

Garou names

Then we have the Garou name. This is the way that the Garou refer to each other in the Garou tongue, and is usually something that has a translation in all tongues. Garou names are something given during cub training or rite of passage. A lupus might have a translation/approximation of their birth name, such as Whiteear or Swiftpaw, Howling Moon or Whispering breeze. Lupus, being straightforward, often don't see the point of adopting a new name when they're still the same person.

Many homids on the other hand will have to gain that kind of name, and it may describe a characteristic or an action they did during their rite of passage. Firespeaker, Waverider, Swift Judgement or Honeyed Tongue would all be good examples. It may be a facet of their personality or a way they wish to present themselves to the world. Roams the Forgotten Paths or Dreams the Lightened Path might be such examples. Garou have a little influence over their Garou names, and PGtG suggests that elders choose a few different ones then ask the new garou for their preference.

even if it's sort of a pun/joke for Glass Walkers and Bone Gnawers in many cases. :)


And then there are deed names. Deednames are additional names given to celebrate great deeds, or great misdeeds (occasionally known as Shamenames or Punishmentnames). These are given only for great things, and so most cliaths and fosterns probably wouldn't have one.

Deednames are great and glorious things, the kind of thing that is said with awe when the person passes. They are given by the elders, and most typically a galliard, so that the great deed is remembered every time the person is seen. For example, White Raven was a Garou who gave his life for his sept in a very spectacular way, and was subsequently deeded Last Winter Spirit.

The garou may choose to still use their Garou name, but they will probably be known by the deedname. I suppose a comparison would be the deedname being like a title of nobility. (e.g. A man would still be Richard to his friends, but Sir Richard if mentioned, and in the same way, White Raven might still be called White Raven by his packmates, but would always be referred to by most people as Last Winter Spirit.)


Shamenames record deeds of great embarassment, again so people don't forget. They are given by elders, there's no choice in them, and again it's usually a galliard (or a ragabash) that gives them. Whines at Battle would be an example of a shamename. The name remains until the Garou proves themself, and often requires earning deedname to do so.

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