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Grondr: Something in the swamp

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  • Grondr: Something in the swamp

    "The Grondr are dead, we killed them to the last, then fed their kinfolk to the humans. Its one of the most...unpleasant chapters of our people, few Human armies in even the most disturbing dictatorships can claim to of literally fed the children of the conquered to the next country over." - Susan Mangrove, Child of Gaia, Galliard

    "Hearing that story almost makes you want to grow those hair loops, put on one of those funny skullcaps, and spend every Saturday in temple"-Runs in Cool Shadows, Nuswisha Umbral Danser

    Among the Garou, Galliards sometimes speak of the legends of the fallen Changing Breeds, the majority of whom fell to Garou claws. Around eight thousand years ago, the Garou fought the Grondr in the War of Rage, for the crime of speaking up for the Gurahl. When they lost, the Garou then turned to their kinfolk, and determined to prevent a guerrilla war when the next generation of Grondr changed, they simply handed the hogs to the humans and told them "This is good food, breed them to be fat and weak so you can eat them easily".

    When most Werewolves think of pigs, they think of funny little pink cartoon animals with a charming stutter and an occasional rivalry with a duck, or else a small little critter that's fuzzy and pettable. The first thing that comes to mind is rarely a proper Boar, a large, feral beast with tusks that can sever arteries and leave you to bleed out on the forest floor. A beast so fierce that it would actually run up the shaft of a spear to gore a hunter to death before it too expired, resulting in some spears being made with prongs on the side to avoid that particular scenario.

    But such beasts are dead, never to walk the earth again, say the Garou.

    Of course, around the time this is brought up around the fire, the Red Talons tend to exchange knowing glances...

    For these primal hogs are not...quite entirely dead.

    In 2004, in the state of Georgia...A feral hog was shot. Feral hogs have always been something of a problem for those in rural areas, rooting up grazing land and planted fields, attacking livestock, or simply out-eating all the other local wildlife and forcing Turkeys and Deer to either leave or starve. However, few of these creatures are a real threat, unlike the 8 to 12 foot specimen in question.

    A truly MASSIVE wild hog, which the locals dubbed "Hogzilla" (Because of course they did), made the news. And while it was quickly forgotten, some of the local septs remembered the old stories, and got to talking...This brief sensation had its fifteen minutes of fame, even among the local Garou, but quickly was forgotten. However, the Red Talons living in the swamps of the Southern United States, began to ponder something.

    This hog DID resemble the stories of the Grondr of old, and as the Red Talons patrolled the swamps and backwoods, in time they did find more of these creatures in the deepest areas of wilderness. Gears started turning, and before long, a few packs had devoted themselves to breeding these Hogs. Of course, usually the Red Talons believe in the law of the jungle, if you're not fit to survive, you die...But in this case, their hatred for humanity outweighed this tradition.

    For while modern hogs might not have much in the way of Grondr blood, all modern pigs have a small amount of it in them. A mere drop or two in their veins at the very most. But these gigantic swine had more then most, and through selectively breeding the hogs, they have encouraged larger and larger specimens to grow. Even now, the deepest parts of Georgia, Louisiana and Alabama are pregnant with enormous swine, the likes of which the world hasn't seen since the last Ice Age.

    Having successfully bred these pigs, the Red Talon packs returned to their septs and spread the news of what they had done. A few considered the very idea of using human tools such as selective breeding to be an abomination, but many more where swayed by their argument that using human methods to correct a human wrong was appropriate (Playing up the role humans had in the Grondr's extinction while downplaying the fact that Garou handed their kinfolk over in the first place).

    While some refused to have anything to do with the project, a few elders admitted the plan had merit, and moved to aid the ambitious packs. Now, every solstice in the last decade has been marked with rituals and sacrifices to the Boar Incarna. "Look at what we have done" they howl "We have brought your children back from death, grant them your blessing as you once did in the days of old." they beg.

    So far, Boar has been silent, the Incarna is beyond stubborn, and changing his mind about even the smallest of things tends to be a herculean task. Long ago, he accepted his children where dead, nothing would bring them back, and to try would dishonor their memory. So far, nothing the Red Talons have done has swayed him, but as the rituals get more complex, more sacrifices are rendered, and the pleas become more desperate, perhaps they WILL succeed in getting his attention enough to plead their case. Maybe then, they can convince Boar to bless these porcine Kinfolk, and permit them to birth more Grondr into the world.

    If and when these new Grondr are born, the Red Talons have...plans for them. The hope is, the Wereboars will come to the same conclusion the Red Talons have, the Humans must be culled, curtailed, and broken. And while the legends speak of the Grondr purifying WYRM taint, why there's no REAL reason they can't do the same with the Weaver, now is there? And even if they can't, having the blessing of the Boar Incarna and undoing the death of the Grondr might just be the thing to get the other Tribes to admit that perhaps the Red Talons have a point, perhaps they know things the other Tribes do not and should be payed more heed...

    Plot Hooks

    * Breeding back Grondr kinfolk has been working quite well, with drastic changes over just a handful of generations...Its been working TOO well in fact. One of the members of the Red Talon packs behind this has fallen to the Wyrm, and has been introducing Skull Pigs to the project hogs. The intent being to quicken the project, but in such a way the Wyrm would have his tendrils in any wereboars produced, with the hope being that when Boar DOES agree to bless them...The Grondr will return as tainted Mockeries of what they once where, dire hogs that devour all that is pure and shit Balefire across the land in the process.

    * The rituals to appease Boar and get his attention simply haven't been working, Boar isn't going to EVER change his mind on this. But that won't deter the Red Talons involved, more frequent sacrifices, and more potent offerings are the order of the day. Talens, Fetishes, even a Klaive have been offered on the Altar, a veritable feast of gnosis has been provided, and still he is silent. One of the packs involved, then, takes things further. Sometimes, hunters go out into the woods and simply never return. Search parties never find them, but the Red Talons know the truth, their hearts have been torn from their chest and burned for Boar. And as Banes gather around the ritual fires, the pack speaks of how they're going to get more...

    * One of the Urban septs gets a visitor, a Red Talon who his peers refer to as a "Whelp". He tells the other Garou of the project the Red Talons have been working on, but is convinced they cannot do it alone, and believes that the other Tribes may have ways of making the rituals and breeding programs a success. He also shares his fear that if the Grondr DO return and the most radical Red Talons DO shape their development, that dire consequences for the areas humans will follow. While he has no more love for humanity then any other Red Talon, he does not believe they deserve whatever he fears will happen should their plans come to fruition in the way they intend.


  • #2
    I want some bacon now


    • #3
      The animal Kinfolk of the Grondr were not Hogzilla, that is a level of size that only exists in feral pigs that are descended from domesticated pigs that were breeding for thousands of years for greater food production. The animal Kinfolk of the Grondr were probably around human mass (an average of 70 kilograms for females and an average of 100 kilograms for males) with impressive tusks and wicked tempers for both sexes. The way to 'return' to the animal Kinfolk of the Grondr would be to selectively breed against the traits that are desirable in domesticated pigs (large size, smaller tusks, and decent tempers).

      I really doubt that the Red Talons would be willing to adopt enough human ideas to selectively breed pigs in the wild. I think that they would rather use negative selective pressures (they would eat the pigs with largest mass, smallest tusks, and best tempers). After one hundred years (and an average of twenty piggy generations in the wild), they might see some modest results from their negative selective pressures, but I do not know if it would be enough to recreate the animal Kinfolk of the Grondr.

      A better (though much more dangerous method) would be to capture Skull Pigs before they consume Wyrm contaminated bones and breed them with European wild boars. While European wild boars have some contamination from feral pigs, the Skull Pigs are Grondr Kinfolk, so they would create Grondr Kinfolk by outcrossing. Of course, capturing and breeding Wyrm creatures goes against everything that the Red Talons believe, so it is unlikely to occur.


      • #4
        Well Tari, the basic idea was that all pigs have a small amount of Grondr blood in them due to the breeding practices of early humanity and pigs getting out into the wild ever since then. These "Hogzilla" are the result of unusually high concentrations of that genetic heritage in their blood which results in bigger and more primal hogs. The Red Talons noticed this, and started encouraging breeding between the bigger specimens in hopes they'd manifest more of the kinfolk traits.

        And the intent was to have it come off as a bit of a pipe dream at best, the Red Talons are doing something that the rest of the tribe generally considers dodgy and is working with something they don't entirely understand beyond "If you kill the weak ones and make the big ones have sex, you get more big ones". Most of the hooks involve it either going horribly wrong, or needing more time and effort then the Red Talons can do on their own. All in all, I tried to play up that these Talons are actually trying to do something somewhat noble, but some of them have less then the best intentions and those who genuinely DO have good intentions just lack the human perspective required for this kind of endeavor.

        That said, I MAY of underestimated just how long each generation of pigs is, I figured it was like 3-5 years but I could very well be mistaken on that.


        • #5
          I am not disagreeing that they do, I am just saying that large size is a feature of domestication and the influence of the Weaver. To recreate the Animal Kinfolk of the Grondr, you need to remove the influence of the Weaver, which means selective pressures for smaller sizes, larger tusks, and wicked tempers. It is also probably best to start with European wild boars instead of domestic pigs, so you will probably be doing it in Eastern Europe.


          • #6
            I am a simple man. I see an Autocthon post, I mash the Like button.