Red Talons
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The apes breed Wyrmspawn like a mongrel's back breeds fleas; kill the mongrel and the fleas will die off. If you protect them, dog, then you deserve your fate.

- Bloodmoon, Red Talon Ahroun

Overview


With growing alarm, the Red Talons watched the humans hunt their wolf Kinfolk into extinction. They watched their precious forests turn into highways and housing developments. Also, they watched as the other Garou did nothing to protect the Wyld but continued to fight among themselves. The watching has ended.

In the great winter-waste of northern Canada, the elder Red Talons met and decided on a course of action. This meeting has become known as the Winter Council. Knowing that the other tribes would unite against a renewed Impergium - even though they can't seem to unite against the Wyrm - the Red Talons decided on a subtler course of action. When the council disbanded, several alphas had agreed to the plan and all had agreed to keep the meeting secret from the other tribes.

In the coming seasons, a few Red Talon cubs from around the world would be hidden from the other tribes. Of these new Garou, only a select few would be allowed to join packs with other tribes, in order to maintain a semblance of cooperation. The other Talons would be raised to adulthood, trained as warriors and placed in packs, without ever meeting another tribe or even a single human. With these "untainted" Garou, the elders would begin their plan of renewing the Impergium.

Of course, not all Red Talon elders support this plan. Many decry it as wishful thinking that a handful of Garou could begin to undo the damage wrought by thousands of years of unmitigated human expansion. Others mutter that humanity is too powerful and that a reinstated Impergium could achieve nothing beyond unwanted attention. But even these dissenters refuse to betray the plan to the other tribes, in the hope that Griffin has a secret weapon to use against the hated humans. The first of the secret packs has already been formed.

Appearance
In wolf form, Talons are generally large-framed, with noticeably oversized jaws and paws. Even in Lupus, their claws are almost catlike in sharpness. Their fur tends toward ruddy brown. Perhaps the most unusual feature of the tribe is the shock of blood- or flame-red fur always present somewhere on their bodies. Talons boast that it is a badge of honor from Gaia, showing her approval for the only tribe willing to advocate putting humans back in their place. Less extreme tribes contend (quietly) that it is Gaia's mark of shame to the last adherents of the Impergium.

In Homid form (which they rarely ever assume), Talons are crude, hairy, slouching and unkempt; they never look when they can glare. They shamble, unused to walking on two legs, and find the human's mild sensory depravation unnerving.

Kinfolk
Red Talons guard the dwindling wolf packs across the world. Many won't even acknowledge human Kinfolk, sparking many bloody conflicts with other tribes. All wolves, Kinfolk or not, are precious to the tribe, and even a pup is worth a few human lives. To lose a wolf to starvation or disease is a reason to mourn; to lose one to hunters is an excuse for revenge.

Organization


The Red Talons retain more of their wolf heritage than any other tribe. Their social structure depends on levels of dominance determined by strength, cunning and endurance. The Alpha, leads, and all others bow to her wishes. The hierarchy often parallels the order in which the group eats. The Alpha eats first and allows others to dine at her discretion. Violating this pecking order constitutes a challenge of authority and usually results in a fight for dominance.

Recent years have actually seen a few metis born into the tribe, to the shock of many Garou, Red Talons and otherwise. It is a sign of the tribe's growing desperation that these metis are being brought up in the Red Talon way and given places among Talon packs. (Other Garou whisper that it's a sign of the Talons' desperation that these metis are being conceived at all. Either way, it seems to be a poor sign for the future of the tribe.)

Tribal Weakness


Wyld Affinity: Cannot regain Gnosis in cities.
The Red Talons’ close ties to the spiritual texture of the wilderness impair them when they leave its embrace. Talons may not regain Gnosis within a city, save when within an actual caern.

Names


The name of a Red Talon can be found in her howl. Unpronounceable to humans, the Red Talon sings whatever resides in her heart of hearts. This is her true name, and only wolves or Garou who know her well, such as a mate or pack member, can reproduce it. For the convenience of other Garou, a Red Talon often chooses human words that at least represent the song in her heart. Most names represent a favored activity, a spectacular deed or a particularly special aspect of Gaia, such as Moon Chaser or Blood-Eye.

Camps


Camps are fairly rare among the Red Talons, for various reasons. The first and foremost, however, is that this tribe is much more closely unified in matters of ideology than most other tribes - and, in this case, the ideology is an unfortunate one for humanity.

The Lodge of the Predator Kings
These Red Talons commonly run in Hispo form, as a tribute to their long-lost dire wolf cousins. The Kings feel that it is the duty of all animals and all Garou to prevent human expansion. Slightly more progressive than the Warders (see below), the Kings have made tentative alliances with other of the shapeshifters, such as the Bastet and the Corax. The Kings believe that if the Changers band together, the defilement of Gaia can be halted. The Predator Kings are baffled by humanity's ability simply to consume nature - and not only do they not understand it, they fear it.

Warders of the Land
The most prevalent of the camps, the Warders believe it is the duty of the Red Talons and all wolves to keep the humans away from nature. Although the Warders are always prepared for a direct confrontation, they have been stymied by the slow, inexorable progress of homo sapiens. Humanity doesn't attack nature the way a wolf brings down a doe, it simply absorbs everything Gaian. While the Warders would reverse time so that predators once more ruled the world, it is this nostalgic thinking that is costing them the fight.

Whelp's Compromise
The most compassionate - at least from a homid's perspective - of the Red Talon camps, this group has adopted a few homid mannerisms, to the great distress of tribal elders. These Talons have suggested at several moots that the tribe should bide its time and simply curb the progress of humanity, rather than waging outright war against the apes. Better to use the humans' weapons against them, they argue, and not futilely strive for the humans' extinction. Most members of this camp in no way believe that humans deserve any amount of mercy, but they fear that the Talons' goals may lead to an all-out war with the other tribes.

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