Lineage: Lycans The Essence of Fear
Creatures of the night have existed for thousands of years. They are the substance of legend, nightmares come to life. Among these creatures are the lycans - immortal, shape-shifting beings who draw their power from the moon itself. Their characteristics most closely resemble those of a wolf. Of these many characteristics comes a certain "pack mentality."
Physically, lycans possess superior agility, reflexes, heightened senses, and strength compared to normal humans. Purebred and natural-born lycans display greater strength and speed compared to those who are "turned."
For those who are turned, their human features are more pronounced - whereas the wolf-like features of a purebred are more pronounced. The wolf-like features, strength, and overall power of the "turned" lycans depends highly on the purity of those who turned them.
Additionally, lycans are immortal and display supernatural resilience - immunity to toxins/poisons and a highly developed "healing factor" which allows them to recover from most injuries in a relatively short amount of time.
As a lycan ages, these abilities become sharper and more refined. This results in older lycans displaying sharper senses, greater strength, and increased speed than those of relatively younger lycans.
Lycans, however, have one fatal weakness: silver. Depending on the severity, wounds inflicted by silver may or may not heal. In some cases, those wounds have even left scars (i.e. branding done with silver, amputated limbs not growing back, scars that develop even though the wound has somewhat healed, etc.).
Dominance and Control
Lycans control those whom they turn. The first lycans were the result of evolution - a mere mutation on a select few individuals. This "gift" was then passed down through their family lines, evolving and adapting with each generation. Eventually the race became perfected and stable.
Another way to gain control is to assert dominance. This is done by way of combat. One lycan must bring another to the brink of death, then sink their fangs into their opponent's throat. At that moment, the one who is dominated and their pack are now under the new alpha's control. In the early days, nomadic packs used this practice to establish the first alphas.
This unique power of control was hereditary - meaning that it was passed down generation by generation. It started with the firstborn heir. If there was no heir, then that power would be passed to the next of kin (siblings by order of age).
As a result, direct siblings and their heirs were immune to the alpha's control. Furthermore, those whom they turned were also immune - remaining under the control of those who had turned them.
House Greystoke Valko of House Greystoke: First Warrior King of the Lycan Underworld
It all started with Valko...
Though the early parts of his life were shrouded in mystery, it was widely believed that Valko originally came from the area of Gaul. His past experiences had included fighting both with and against the Romans.
Near the dawn of the first century, the lycan packs of the Eastern Hemisphere had been consolidated under four pack alphas. One of them was Valko Greystoke.
Eventually, the four alphas and their growing packs converged in the Far North. Once they were close enough, each alpha left their pack behind and ventured alone into a dark forest where they hunted each other down under a full moon.
When the had reached its peak, Valko Greystoke emerged with the other pack alphas behind him, having dominated them into submission. They and all of their packs now belonged to him.
Standing in front of all packs, Valko transformed and let out a long howl. The packs all around did the same as they submitted to their new king.
And thus Valko Greystoke was named, "The King of the Wolves."
For the first century of his rule, the King of the Wolves and House Greystoke were a mainly nomadic group - keeping their numbers relatively small. Though it was possible to "turn" humans into lycans, those that were natural-born lycans were superior to those who were turned.
As the power of the Alpha passed from generation-to-generation, it allowed House Greystoke to solidify itself and to become the cornerstone of the Lycan Underworld.
However, they would soon need to grow their numbers as a newer threat loomed on the horizon.
An Era of War Vampires
Throughout the centuries, the lycans had encountered another group of immortals - vampires. Sometimes their interactions were neutral, and even somewhat peaceful.
In A.D. 1096, a leader of the vampiric clans, Demetri Nostrovich, called a meeting of the immortals outside Constantinople. Lycans from the West and Elves from the North all gathered to this meetings. Several prominent houses showed up, including House Greystoke, under a banner of peace.
At the time, the Greystoke numbers were few; but their warriors were powerful and without equal under the light of the full moon.
The prominent members of House Greystoke, along with several elven and vampiric houses, had all gathered in the great hall of the Nostrovich stronghold. When the time came, Demetri Nostrovich revealed himself and laid out his great plan - to dominate the world of men. His goal was to go to war with mankind and to enslave the human race.
At that moment, the great hall erupted. Immediately, all of the vampiric houses in attendance rallied behind Nostrovich in full support; whereas the elves in attendance were split - some siding with the plan, others speaking out against it, and others who remained silent in contemplation.
It was a night of the new moon, meaning that the lycans of House Greystoke were in their weakest state. During the new moon, the youngest of the lycans were unable to change. The purebreds (sometimes referred to as those with the "Blood of the First Wolves") could change, but were much weaker than usual.
It was at that moment when lines were drawn. In a preemptive strike, all of the vampires in the great hall turned on those who did not openly support Nostrovich in his plan. Immediately, immortals clashed and a battle broke out in the confines of the great hall within the Nostrovich stronghold.
During the clash, Valko and the rest of House Greystoke were all cut down, except one: one of Valko's direct descendants: Peter. A young prince at the time, Peter was the only member of House Greystoke who managed to escape the carnage of the vampires' betrayal.
Therefore he had no choice, but to prepare for war...
The Hunter King Peter of House Greystoke
The events of that fateful night were long remembered as the Night of the Silver Moon. When Peter Greystoke escaped the Nostrovich stronghold, he immediately sought out his kin (those who were not present during the massacre). Both of his parents, his older siblings, and even some of his younger siblings had fallen alongside the alpha, Valko, during the Night of the Silver Moon.
Therefore, by way of succession, the power of the alpha transferred to Peter that night - marking him as the true heir and thus making him the new King of the Wolves.
Immediately after gathering what remained of House Greystoke, the newly crowned King of the Wolves went on the offensive. He and his kin began to hunt down vampires all across Europe of Asia - leaving absolute carnage in their wake. To combat their immortal foes, both races of immortals began turning humans and increasing their numbers. Eventually, small skirmishes evolved into large battles.
In A.D. 1192, King Peter had successfully hunted down the remnants of the Nostrovich clan - save for one final army, led by the legendary Demitri Nostrovich himself. In one final clash, the wolves descended upon the vampires in an epic battle. It was there on the battlefield, under a full moon, when Peter Greystoke decapitated Demitri Nostrovich. Grasping onto the vampire lord's severed head, the King of the Wolves let out a mighty roar and watched as the remaining vampire soldiers fled the battlefield.
From that moment forward, King Peter of House Greystoke became known as "The Hunter." As generations passed, all lycan kings who led their packs into battle were referred to as "the Hunter," a title that was both earned and respected.
Castle Greystoke Castle Greystoke
During the Blood Wars, King Peter Greystoke sought out a suitable den for his packs.
Near the border of modern day France and Germany, he found a secluded spot in the mountains that could be easily defended.
On top of that, the mountain sat on top of one of the largest silver mines in all of Europe - making it both a physical and financial stronghold.
Building a fortress into the side of the mountain itself, the place became known as Castle Greystoke. Up in the mountains and surrounded by trees, the fortress was untouchable. The Wolves of House Greystoke prowled the thick forests around their den, mercilessly cutting down any who might approach uninvited.
Castle Greystoke would serve as the seat of House Greystoke for centuries to come...
William Greystoke: Physical Characteristics Name: William Greystoke Identity: Secret Origin: Lycan Age: 333 Height: 6' 4" Weight: 265lbs Eye Color: Varies Hair Color: Brown Aliases: The Hunter The Apex Predator The Cerebral Assassin The Beast Incarnate The Lord of the Lycans The Greystoke Legend The King of the Wolves
Early History William Greystoke - 1781
Born in 1687, William Greystoke was the fifth-born heir of King Peter Greystoke and his mate at the time, Catherine Greystoke. As a regular practice, lycans spaced out their breeding cycles by decades and sometimes centuries - choosing only when the time was right to produce their purebred descendants.
William, together with his brothers and sisters, personally trained under King Peter and his closest advisers. They were taught how to hunt, how to kill, and most importantly - how to lead.
During his later youth and young adulthood, William entered the field of battle and gained firsthand experience regarding the art of war.
William's Sanguis Lupi - 1732
Each of the lycan lords kept an elite group of warriors as their personal guard. The lycan lords personally turned these individuals themselves, as a way to guarantee their absolute loyalty. These elite groups of warriors, loyal only to the one who turned them, became known as the Sanguis Lupi or "Blood Wolves."
For over a century, William traveled the globe in search of legendary warriors. After he had given them immortality, William and the rest of his Blood Wolves learned the unique fighting styles of those they had brought in as their new brothers and sisters.
By the early 1800's, William's Sanguis Lupi had warriors from nearly every continent - fierce and seasoned warriors from Europe, Japan, the Middle East, Northern Africa, and the Americas.
A New Alpha
Throughout the mid 1800's, William and his kin spent the majority of their lives scattered across the globe. Each of them had begun building their own packs and establishing dens in various parts of the world. William and a few of his kin decided to go to war, enforcing House Greystoke's interest from the battlefield. The battles that took place were often against either vampires of humans.
Though the vampires were among the oldest enemies of the lycans, humans were beginning to challenge them as well - using their increasingly advanced weaponry to sometimes devastating effect.
In the mid 1800's, the first of William's kin were killed. He was not shot with silver bullets or bolts, nor was he impaled by a silver sword. Instead, he was killed silently in his sleep - a silver dagger finding its way to his throat and ending him quickly. Within five years, many more of William's siblings met their deaths in the same manner.
Catherine Greystoke - 1857
By 1857, William found himself the third eldest (formerly being fifth) of King Peter's heirs. His older sister, Catherine Greystoke, remained the eldest, followed by the now-second-eldest, Malcolm Greystoke. However, the entire lycan underworld was shaken to its core when King Peter, himself, was killed - assassinated within the walls of Castle Greystoke...
As the eldest-born daughter of King Peter, the power of the alpha was passed on to Catherine Greystoke. As she took the throne, Queen Catherine called the packs to Castle Greystoke. Uncertain of who had been murdering her kin, she called for all lycan packs to marshal their forces in preparation to face this unknown, unseen threat. Lycans from all over the globe had begun to converge on Castle Greystoke for the calling of the packs.
After many years of traveling the globe and waging war, William and his forces were summoned to Castle Greystoke to swear fealty and offer a display of unity in support of House Greystoke. There were some, however, who were skeptical about the circumstances regarding Catherine's ascension to the throne. Although the other lycan houses had submitted the Catherine's rule, her own siblings were immune to her power as the newly crowned alpha.
Malcolm, Catherine's younger and William's senior, had begun to suspect that Catherine had been behind the swift, yet brutal killings of their kin in an effort to take power. After all, Catherine was personally known for her swiftness on the battlefield and her unmatched knowledge of stealth tactics. Before William had arrived to Castle Greystoke for the calling of the packs, Malcolm had confronted him - telling William to be watchful of their older sister and, when the time was right, to support Malcolm when needed.
At the time of her ascension, Catherine had already taken a mate from another prominent lycan house but had retained her family name. Together, they already had a few young children, further solidifying her claim and ensuring that the power of the alpha was remain within her bloodline.
The End of the Blood Wars Malcolm Greystoke
With Catherine and her lineage firmly entrenched as the head of the family, Malcolm and William both realized that they needed to support their older sister. For the time being, Malcolm's dissent grew more and more quiet with each passing year. Eventually, he began to even support his sister and her efforts to expand their holdings.
However, Malcolm seemed to have truly achieved the impossible when he almost single-handedly brought about the official end of the centuries-long Blood Wars. Ever the diplomat, Malcolm sought to end the feud between vampires and lycans through marriage. Though their family was nowhere near as strong as they once had been, the Nostrovich clan still held sway among the prominent vampire covens of the world.
With the blessing of Queen Catherine, Malcolm joined the houses of Greystoke and Nostrovich as he himself took a vampire for his bride. The wedding took place within the walls of Castle Greystoke as both houses set aside their differences to enter into an era of peace... or so they thought...
As a show of unity and honor, Malcolm had arranged for his personal Sanguis Lupi and the personal guard of his new wife to guard the feast within the great hall. As vampires and lycans engaged in the celebrations, they were personally guarded by nearly two-hundred immortals.
Catherine, her mate, and all of her children were in attendance. While Malcolm and his new wife's immortals guarded the great hall, William's Sanguis Lupi patrolled and guarded the outside - keeping a steady watch over their vampiric guests within the stronghold. Every now and then, William would make his way into the great hall to check on the feast.
However, just as the moon reached its highest peak, William made his way towards the great hall. This time, as he approached the doors, his brother's guards stopped him. They instructed him that, since the ceremony was reaching its highest point, only he was allowed to proceed. While the rest of his Sanguis Lupi had to stay behind, William reluctantly made his way into the great hall.
As he made his way inside towards the ceremony, William could not help but feel that something was not right.
Suddenly, he heard the sounds of battle coming from the great hall... gunfire... the clashing of metal... growls... roars... cries of pain... Bursting into the great hall with weapons drawn, his eyes were met with the horrors of betrayal: Catherine, her mate, their young children, and members of their personal guard lay dead on the ground. At the head of the table Malcolm stood, his eyes glowing a bright yellow color.
In one last effort to sway his younger brother, Malcolm beckoned for William to join him. Together as brothers, they would slaughter any who stood in their way - vampire and lycan alike (including their own kin if necessary). Working with the vampires all along, Malcolm had orchestrated the assassination perfectly - managing to kill not only his own sister, but her children as well; thus clearing the way for him to become the next alpha and the new King of the Lycan Underworld.
Quickly observing the situation, William realized that Malcolm was untouchable. Malcolm (now possessing the power of the alpha) was surrounded by obedient lycans and vampires. He had no choice but to fight his way out. In the blink of an eye, William's Sanguis Lupi crashed into the great hall fully transformed and ready to defend their blood lord.
Together with his Sanguis Lupi, William fought and clawed his way out of the great hall, managing to save a small handful of his younger brothers and sisters. Barely escaping with their lives, William and the rest of House Greystoke faced their greatest threat yet - their own...
With an army of both vampires and lycans at his disposal, Malcolm wasted no time in the pursuit of his kin.
William had escaped Castle Greystoke with only a few of his younger brothers and sisters, along with a handful of lycans that were still bound to him through blood (those he had turned). He knew their small pack stood no chance against the masses under Malcolm's control. Castle Greystoke was now more impregnable than ever, and a battle out in the open would be suicide.
Therefore William and his kin had no choice but to run.
Concealing himself within the depths of Castle Greystoke, Malcolm sent both vampire and lycan assassins to hunt down his kin. For months, William and the remaining Greystoke's had to either fight off or evade Malcolm's assassins. As they remnants of House Greystoke fled throughout Europe towards Asia, their path was cut off. Lycans pursued from the North while vampires began closing in from the East and South.
Eventually, William and his kin turned West. By way of France, they booked passage to Great Britain.
The Calm Before the Storm
While in Great Britain, William sought to connect with some of his mortal (human) allies. One such ally was a veteran of the British Army, Major General Alexander Thorpe. However, when William was finally able to reconnect with his old friend, he found Alexander on his deathbed. When Alexander was a much younger man, he and William had traveled the world and had many adventures - but those days were long gone.
Having sustained severe injuries during the Crimean War, Major Thorpe had been sent home with the honors. He was the owner of a vast estate in the English countryside and he was allowed to keep a personal garrison on the property as well. Many years before, Alexander's wife had died giving birth to their only child, Elizabeth.
At the time, Elizabeth was nearly twenty-three years of age, unmarried, and without children. Alexander knew that his death would leave his daughter with nothing, and that his assets would be redistributed by the Crown. He knew that William was a capable fighter and leader. Furthermore, he realized that William could protect his daughter and guard their assets. He knew of the immortal blood which coursed through William's veins, but it did not matter to him.
It was time to join their houses.
However before William agreed to the task, he first sought a private audience with Elizabeth. Truth be told, it was the first time they had ever been alone together. It was then that William explained his ancestry and revealed what he was to her. Though it was entirely common for arranged marriages to still take place, William wanted to gain Elizabeth's consent beforehand. Knowing that it would be a mutually beneficial alliance, Elizabeth agreed and allowed the plans to be made for their union. For the purpose of maintaining discretion, the lands were kept in the Thorpe name and all records were modified accordingly.
After a small, intimate ceremony on the estate grounds, William and Elizabeth were man and wife. However, they did not immediately consummate the marriage. Each of them viewed their union as precisely what it was - an alliance. Finally, Alexander's death drew near. Wanting to die in peace, he refused William's offer to turn immortal - choosing rather to die as a man. After telling bidding his daughter farewell, Alexander Thorpe slowly closed his eyes and died.
The night after Alexander's funeral, it was a full moon and time was of the essence. Having no choice left, William needed to begin building his numbers. Therefore, he and his kin attacked the garrison of the Thorpe estate and turned every soldier. Once named Elizabeth Thorpe, Elizabeth Greystoke stayed in her chamber and listened to the cries of the men outside. When the sun rose the next morning, Elizabeth was the only mortal left within the estate. William had let her know that he would not turn her until she was ready.
With an army of immortals guarding their new stronghold, William took only his closest guards and booked passage to North America in search of new allies. After nearly a year of his first tour, he returned home to find the stronghold still intact. At this point, his wife had spent nearly a year living among immortals. Ready to accept them as her own, she finally gave her consent and allowed William to turn her as well. It was then that they consummated their marriage as well.
Not long after that, Elizabeth became pregnant and gave birth to a son whom she named Alexander (after her father). Even with a son of his own, William would take a small pack and travel the globe - sometimes for over a year at a time - in search of new alliances and establishing dens of his own. Though he personally wanted to spend more time at the stronghold with his mate and firstborn son, he knew that his scent would attract unwanted attention if he lingered too long.
However just as William had begun to expand his operations primarily in the West, Malcolm had begun building his in the East... and he had not forgotten about his remaining kin...
The War of the Wolves
Over two decades had passed since the last engagement between Malcolm's assassins and the rest of the Greystoke's. William spent that entire time both establishing and fortifying dens throughout parts of Europe and North America. Once members were recruited and turned, they were trained to fight light lycans - mastering combat in both forms.
Malcolm, however, had begun building his own numbers as well. He deployed groups of vampires and lycans to lead raids in an effort to procure both living and non living assets. Humans that were captured were primarily used as cattle to the hordes at Malcolm's disposal. Those with the potential to fight were turned. Their lands were seized and converted to training grounds and supply depots.
For a time, it seemed as if both were hesitant to take the first step towards open conflict. They knew what would happen once the first blood was spilt.
Then, after nearly two decades without conflict, Malcolm sent a considerable force of lycans and vampires to Great Britain. First, they began to raid and attack smaller dens that William had set up in London's underworld. Under the full moon, immortals took to the rooftops of London and battled one another in small, yet violent skirmishes.
However if was not long before Malcolm's forces tracked down the remaining Greystoke's, and their stronghold in the English countryside...
Alexander Greystoke (William's son) had grown to adulthood. Trained by his father, Michael grew into a capable fighter. For quite some time, he was put in control over the packs of London. However, as more of Malcolm's hordes entered the city, Alexander and his forces were pushed out. They had no choice but to head for Thorpe Manor - barely escaping with their lives.
It was all a ploy, however. Malcolm allowed his nephew to escape so that he could be led to William and the rest of his kin. Trackers were sent after Alexander and, sure enough, they discovered Thorpe Manor. William was nowhere near the stronghold, but his mate, his son, and a few of the remaining Greystoke's were inside - a suitable prize regardless. Within a few days, Malcolm's forces attacked and laid siege to Thorpe Manor.
After several days of the onslaught, Malcolm's forces still could not break through the reinforced walls of Thorpe Manor. Instead of losing more of their own, Malcolm's commanders set up a blockade around the stronghold. It would still be a few days before their artillery made its way up from the coast. Once the cannons arrived, they would bring down the walls of Thorpe Manor and their hordes would swarm over the remaining Greystoke's.
A few days later, the artillery finally arrived... but not as expected. As the units of artillery appeared on the hill, they instead opened fire on Malcolm's forces. William had intercepted the artillery and had turned it upon the forces of his brother. William's pack had won the first major battle of the War of Wolves, but the war was far from over.
Knowing that Thorpe Manor was compromised, William had no choice but to escape with his remaining family. This put an incredible strain on his relationship with Elizabeth. She had already given up so much, and now she was forced to leave her family's home. Still, as she remained firmly committed to William's cause, what little tenderness which might have been developing towards him became increasingly dim over the years.
In time, they each took their separate paths in terms of romance and passion. From the very beginning, neither of them had asked for love. Their union was built out of necessity - an act of survival, and a means to further the bloodline - nothing more, nothing less... and they each accepted it.
For the next several decades, the conflict between William and Malcolm escalated to global proportions. As world wars took place and armies of mortals clashed, armies of immortals clashed in the shadows as well. Both sides had immortals joining within their ranks. Battles evolved from using horses and swords, to planes and tanks. Some battles were won by William, and others won by Malcolm.
Before the start of the first World War, Malcolm secured a fiscal advantage for his forces. No longer able to financially sustain his endeavors through the silver mine within Castle Greystoke, he reached out to the German government and entered the weapons' market. Over the course of several years, Malcolm received generous financial compensation in return for providing weapons to Germany's armed forces.
William countered by raiding supply lines and attacking Malcolm's facilities throughout Europe. As World War I commenced, immortals infiltrated the ranks of both sides. During this time, William chose to remain hidden. Through whispers, he was said to have appeared in skirmishes throughout various parts of Europe. There was no clear path to his appearances. Then, for over two years, he vanished without a trace...
Malcolm's spies and trackers had no luck in locating William during this time. The remaining Greystoke's could not be located either. For a time, Malcolm began to wonder if they were dead.
Finally, after years of silence, William and his son emerged. They began to raid Malcolm's supply lines and facilities in Northern Europe, and they did so... openly. In fact, William and his son made certain to leave at least one survivor at each incursion - instructing them to inform Malcolm of their whereabouts. It was an open challenge.
Eventually the fighting led both William and Malcolm's packs to the North... the forests of Scandanavia. Malcolm was finally drawn out, leading a combined force of vampires and werewolves against William. In addition to the vampires and werewolves at his disposal, Malcolm brought his offspring as well... powerful hybrids who shared vampiric traits (from their mother) and lycan abilities from their father. These creatures were able to walk in daylight and, when needed, transform into powerful winged beasts capable of flight.
During the battle, William was finally able to engage Malcolm in personal combat. As the two brutally tore at each other, William slashed his brother's throat. While Malcolm lay there bleeding out, William did not hesitate to go in for the kill... but Malcolm's sons intervened - swarming over William while others carried flew Malcolm to safety.
Alexander, William's firstborn, rushed to his father's aid and the two of them fought off his cousins. However, Malcolm made it to safety and was able to heal from his wounds. William and his forces made their stand, as Malcolm's were forced to retreat.
Once again concealing himself within Castle Greystoke, Malcolm began to make changes... Turning his back on his lineage and kin entirely, Malcolm cast off the Greystoke name and created a new one -
Leinhardt - as a symbol to unite both vampire and lycan clans under a new banner. Castle Greystoke was renamed Castle Leinhardt, new sigils were cast and hung over the old ones, and all of the ancient Greystoke relics were either destroyed or sealed away.
Decades later, the World War II ravaged most of the Easter Hemisphere. The intensity of William and Malcolm's war escalated as well. Malcolm formed Leinhardt Industries and forged an alliance with the German government as a weapons manufacturer.
As the war raged on, William joined the Allies in the fight - joining their battles in an effort to get closer to Malcolm. Finally as the war drew to a close, William's pack made their way to the very gates of Castle Leinhardt. For weeks, they laid siege and cut off all supply routes.
Near the end of the siege, William was relieved when more Allied forces arrived. At that point, the rest of Hitler's forces had fallen or surrendered. However, just as the Allies arrived, they ordered William to ceasefire. While under siege, Malcolm had negotiated a deal with the Big Three: Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin. By agreeing to provide weapons to their governments, Malcolm had secured both immunity and protection for himself and his forces.
Vastly outnumbered by both Malcolm's forces and the Allied armies, William had no wish but to ceasefire. Later that evening, William and the Alllied commanders met in a command tent. Tensions went up like wildfire as Malcolm entered the tent as well - fully confident of his own safety. After plans were discussed, Malcolm looked around the table at the other commanders... then back over to William...
Not caring about the others in the room, Malcolm looked William directly in the eye and said, "For now, there will be peace... I'll let you leave with your little pack and go about your own business... but rest assured, if you EVER challenge me... if I ever consider you a threat... I will not hesitate to END you... your pack, your mate, your sons, your daughters, your entire bloodline... the House of Greystoke will be forever wiped off the face of the earth... now leave."
With that, William was forced to leave. Malcolm was still alive, and now he was more untouchable than ever... but for now, there would be some semblance of peace...
Refusing to trust his murderous older brother, William set off across the globe as a soldier of fortune and a warlord of sorts. Setting up his base of operations in North America, William recruited skilled fighters to his cause. Together, they became the international mercenaries and assassins known as Wolf Pack.
While initially hitting the market on a private level, it was not long until government agencies began enlisting the aid of Wolf Pack. At the end of the day, those who were willing to pay for Wolf Pack's services received it. Those who were targets, or those who tried to double cross the pack always ended up the same way - dead.
As the organization grew, William decided to establish small charters - initially around North America, and then eventually the globe. These charters were run by trusted captains, but they all reported directly to William himself.
A Short-Lived Peace
As Wolf Pack became more established and began to turn a profit, William took his portion of the payout and allowed his captains to distribute the rest appropriately. Eventually, William acquired enough funds to purchase an old estate in England - Thorpe Manor.
Nearly one hundred years prior, Thorpe Manor had been lost during the War of the Wolves. It was the ancestral home of his wife, Elizabeth Greystoke. Its loss had put a strain on their relationship. In an unprecedented act of sentimentality, William worked to restore Thorpe Manor to its former glory - presenting it to his Elizabeth upon completion. In his own way, it was William asking her for a fresh start... and she accepted.
For the first time in several decades, William and Elizabeth rekindled their relationship and grew closer together. Eventually they even had more children. Though he still travelled the world and carried out missions for Wolf Pack, William always found his way home. He even had thoughts of leaving Wolf Pack behind and finally settling down... but a harsh reality would soon make its presence all too well known...
Blood for Blood
The summer was coming to an end... William had just completed a mission in North America alongside his two most trusted captains at the time - Hawk and Risky. When the three of them entered the field, they worked in perfect harmony. Death was an art to them, and each mission served as its own masterpiece.
Already, William and Hawk had discussed his possible departure. They each honestly thought that particular mission would most likely be their last. After, William would hand the reigns of Wolf Pack over to his dear friend and the two would go their separate ways.
As they were getting ready to part ways, William received a secure call from Elizabeth - who was pregnant and residing at Thorpe Manor at the time. Activating his earpiece, William answered expecting to hear his wife on the other end. There was nothing but silence at first... then he heard his wife in the background - not her voice, but muffled screams instead.
That was when Malcolm's voice came over the line... "You've been doing a lot, little brother... I warned you what would happen if you ever challenged me... if I ever considered you a threat..."
Hawk and Risky came over to William's side and listened in... William pleaded with his brother that he had no interest in the throne... no interest in taking the power of the alpha... but it wasn't enough.
William was forced to listen helplessly as Malcolm and his sons killed Elizabeth. "Consider this mercy." Malcolm said when he had finished. "Once again, I will allow you to live... but not your heirs. Tonight I will exterminate your heirs... whether they bear your name, or if they're one of your bastards... and I will cripple your precious pack."
Just as the call ended, one member of Wolf Pack came over and informed them that their safehouses and compounds in the Eastern Hemisphere had just been compromised. Reports were pouring in of Wolf Pack bases and charters becoming compromised - their members being bloodily slaughtered and their facilities left in ashes...
For months (or perhaps even years), Malcolm had sent packs of his deadliest assassins - comprised of both vampires and lycans - to hunt down William's heirs and to gain intel on Wolf Pack.
In one night, Malcolm gave the order and the slaughter had begun. Though only a few escaped, most of William's heirs and bastards were hunted down and wiped out. Those closest to him had suffered the most - including his pregnant wife and the child which she carried - dead. Among the survivors, however, were Alexander and Victor, William's oldest sons.
After safeguarding his remaining heirs, William and the remaining members of Wolf Pack set out for vengeance - blood for blood.
The Hunter's Ascension
In their quest for vengeance, Wolf Pack arrived in Germany and set their sights upon Castle Leinhardt. Like all other threats they had faced, Malcolm Leinhardt (fka Malcolm Greystoke) needed to be dealt with permanently. Though William and his own pack had faced Malcolm's hordes on their own in the past, they were not alone in this fight.
Through careful planning and execution, Wolf Pack infiltrated the once impregnable Castle Leinhardt. Sending an inside operative to lower the outer defenses, the rest of Wolf Pack was able to enter the compound via air drop. It was not long before shots were fired and a battle erupted within the castle walls.
Hawk took to the sky to battle Malcolm's winged hybrid spawn, Risky teleported throughout the field - sending silver-tipped bullets into vampires and lycans alike, and Talon unleashed her raw fury on the beasts.
Meanwhile, William made his way to towards Malcolm. Malcolm and his vampiric wife were waiting for him up in the throne room. As she moved to aid her husband, she was intercepted by William's inside operative - allowing both William and Malcolm to engage in combat one last time...
After an epic encounter, William rose up from the ground... holding the head of his brother. However he did not feel the power of the alpha coursing through his veins just yet... he looked down into the courtyard and saw Malcolm's heirs ripped to shreds... then he looked back at Malcolm's wife... and down to her stomach... "Please..." she begged. "I'll go away, I promise. This child will be of no threat to you. You can have the throne. Take it! TAKE IT PLE-" Her words were cut short by the sound of a handgun going off nearby. In the struggle with Malcolm, William's 1911 pistol had fallen to the ground. His operative had picked it up, chambered a silver-tipped round, and fired it into the vampire queen's stomach. As she lay there bleeding out, she reached out towards William - only for his operative to walk over and fire another silver-tipped bullet into the queen's head. As both lives were extenguished, William suddenly felt raw power coursing through his veins and his eyes changed color...
With his eyes glowing a bright yellow, William picked up the head of his brother and walked the rampart. Standing over the battle which raged on below, William lifted Malcolm's head and let out loud roar.
Immediately the battle stopped. All lycans suddenly looked up and howled. Those who were not already transformed did so. Together they let out a loud howl in unison... then turned on the remaining vampires and ripped them all to shreds.
With that, William ripped down the banners and sigils of House Leinhardt... revealing the ancient sigil of his own house... the sigil of his people... the iron wolf of House Greystoke.
Dawning the mantel of the Hunter, William's life changed forever as he took his rightful place as the true alpha... the King of the Lycan Underworld... the King of the Wolves...
(Section Coming Soon)