At about the same time the 17th century werewolf trials in France were petering out due to intervention of powerful Pack leaders, a rumor began to circulate among shapeshifters. The rumor spoke of the coming of a Mother. The story goes as follows:
Nadia, the witch who brought the beast-curse down on the Old Ones, befriended Udar, a werebear who became afflicted through a bite from a bear of the First Generation. He came to Nadia in hopes she would lift the curse, but she refused, saying that to lift the curse on one would be to lift it on all she had cast under her enchantment and she would not do that.
Nadia had a niece named Henna, a spiteful young woman who was learning the old magic from her aunt. Henna said the curse could only be ended by a gathering of all living werebeasts of the original curse and all living descendants. She said that would not happen until a leader rose up to assume control of the Pack. The leader would be someone special, one who was not bitten, but who was born of a woman’s womb.
Henna offered herself as the Mother, but only if Udar would slay Nadia. He did, and Henna ate the flesh of her aunt and drank much of her blood in an effort to acquire the old witch’s power. Udar then lay with her as a man and as a bear many times until Henna conceived a child in her womb.
In the fifth week of her pregnancy, Henna became sick. Blood ran from her womb. She weakened and soon Udar saw that death would claim her. Before she breathed her last, Henna opened her eyes and took Udar by the hand. She told him the Mother would come from far away, from a land of golden waves. The pure-born offspring of the Mother would rise to power and gather the Pack to him, but then there would be war.
Henna died, and with her the misshapen child she carried in her womb. Grieving the loss of Henna and fearful of the destiny she bespoke, Udar went into the deep forest and remained there for many generations of men. When he was old and despairing of life, he left the forest and found a holy man of the new religion. He revealed himself to the priest and told the story of Nadia and Henna and the prophecy of war, then he returned to the forest and, it is said, he ate of the plant called wolfsbane and finally rejoined the witch he loved.
The priest who heard this story soon found himself questioning the reality he had witnessed. He began seeking other shapeshifters, and in time found an Irish werewolf named Luther McGrath. Using his secret as insurance, he convinced McGrath to give him the Gift and see him through his first transformation into a wolf. McGrath did this, but when the priest had told the story given to him by Udar, McGrath killed him with a silver dagger.
McGrath then gathered to himself other shapeshifters to form a clan. The clan turned their efforts toward unraveling the riddle and finding the Mother so that they would have control over her and her son. In 1782 their search brought them to the new country of America. Two years later they encountered the first American-born werewolf descended from the European Pack.
Josef Ulrik was raised by a native tribe, but later served in the colonial armies. McGrath tried to recruit Ulrik to join his clan, but Ulrik, still mourning the loss of a woman he had loved, refused and instead set out for the Deep South, taking the riddle of the Mother with him.
McGrath and his clan sought the Mother in vain for nearly 150 years. During that time, many young women died with werewolf offspring in their wombs.
In 1917, following the death of Katherine Cross, McGrath’s clan was rooted out of an Oklahoma town where they had killed many. Katherine Cross’s death is the first volume of The Werewolf Saga. The book is named for her epitaph: Murdered by Human Wolves.
By the time of Katherine Cross’s death several of McGrath’s followers were weary of the quest and they deserted him, taking the legend of the Mother with them. The legend was spread among others of their kind already living and those they infected. The legend of the Mother became known to most shapeshifters. Some were eager for her coming and others vowed to destroy her and any offspring she might produce.
It was Ulrik who found the Mother. He was working as a professor of zoology in a small Oklahoma college when she walked into his classroom in 1985. Her name is Shara Wellington and her story is the second volume of The Werewolf Saga.
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