A mountain chain rests along the coast. The peaks of Northfall lay at the edge of a fjord at its north. Frosted by snow year-round, the mountains are bitter cold in the winter and pleasantly mild in the summer. The land is typically never without a good breeze. Any adventurers coming will be met with the only bit of forestry for miles. While the upper elevations are mostly snow, ice, and rock, the lower reaches are dotted with various evergreens and at the foothills supports a lush coniferous forest. Mountain goats and sheep are common in these mountains and in the forest below, caribou herds and moose graze.
Pack Foundation Date: 10/16/2023.
Winterhelm seeks wolves who are no stranger to the cold, and are willing to prove themselves apt and able to handle harsh duty.
Wolves devoted to Winterhelm must prove thusly to enter the pack, this is through demonstration of their skills and abilities. They must not only prove their devotion, but also their worth. This often means hunting alongside others, tracking, or showcasing their defensive capabilities. It's crucial for these new members to align themselves with Winterhelm's core values, like resilience, honor, and loyalty. Their actions and behavior should be inherent to them, and be almost a second-nature to truly become one with the pack. Once a newcomer has shown their commitment and earned their place, they are officially recognized as part of the pack — this recognition is amplified by the new packmate taking an oath, and accepting their new chosen rank.
Winterhelm wolves are expected to hold their loyalty and devotion as the paramount virtues they are, with each member wholeheartedly committed to the pack's well-being. In the throes of the harshest winters, they must know they can rely on each other to see the new spring. This unwavering commitment is accompanied by a profound respect for the pack's hierarchy; both in verbal interactions and through body language, such as submissive gestures when addressing higher-ranked individuals. Honor and integrity are deeply ingrained values, and wolves are expected to uphold principles of honesty and honorable conduct. Deception or any act that might betray the pack's trust is considered a serious transgression.
A greeting directed towards those of high rank.
“Aōha dārōñe” — "Your grace..”
A greeting directed towards those of royal status.
“Ondoso aōha henujagon” — “By your leave..”
A courteous way of seeking permission.
“Hae ao udrāzma” — “As you command..”
A respectful acknowledgement of order.
“Sȳrī rhēdan” — “Well met”
A friendly term, often a greeting.
“Sōnar's angogon” — “Winter’s bite”
A reference to the harsh environment they inhabit.
“Rigle se heruch” — “Honor the hierarchy”
A reminder to know your place.
“Ondoso se owlig jelmio” — “By the howling wind”
A remark of shock or surprise.
“Scent hen arghugon” — “Scent of the hunt”
A reference to one’s hunting instincts.
Phrases can be added to this lexicon when used in-character and spread.
THE LAWS OF WINTERHELM.
⚔︎ Loyalty to the pack above all else is non-negotiable. Any actions that betray the pack's trust are strictly forbidden.
⚔︎ All pack members must show respect and deference to those of higher rank, both in word and deed.
⚔︎ Any wolf may challenge a higher-ranking pack member for their position, but only through honorable combat.
⚔︎ Betrayal of the pack, such as sharing its secrets or endangering its safety, carries severe consequences, which may include expulsion or death.
⚔︎ In disputes, combat must be fought honorably, and the vanquished must accept the outcome with grace.
⚔︎ Winterhelm's territory is sacred, and any intrusion is met with resistance; if they cannot be brought to the nobility for judgment, they are to be treated lethally.
⚔︎ Sexism is met with harsh consequences. Both sexes within Winterhelm are considered equal and will be treated as such.
Keisari - Stands as the pinnacle of authority within Winterhelm. Her role encompasses guiding the Kingdom, nurturing a climate of loyalty, and steering crucial decisions, all in harmonious partnership with her counterpart, the Hilmar.
Hilmar - Serves as the commander-in-chief and the enforcer of duty within the realm. The Hilmar takes charge of the military, orchestrates war efforts when the need arises, and ensures order amongst the ranks of Winterhelm.
Draegonar - The Draegonar, the esteemed heir to the Winterhelm throne, is groomed for leadership from an early age, undergoing a rigorous education in the intricacies of ruling. Their right to rule is not handed down but earned through merit and dedication. The Draegonar is expected to take on a second rank, typically serving within the Kingdom's military.
Valyrikar / Valyriel - The Valyrikar and Valyriel, the esteemed prince and princess of Winterhelm, are sons, daughters, or siblings of the ruling monarchs. In Winterhelm, it is customary for the Valyrikar and Valyriel to maintain a second rank within the pack's hierarchy, akin to the Draegonar's role; this ensures they are pulling their weight.
Acting Keisari — @Khione
Acting Hilmar — @Adonis
The current Draegonar is disputed.
Active Valyrikar / Valyriel — @Ludon, @Venaday, @Adorre
Vor'nyr - The right hand to the Keisari. The responsibilities of the Vor'nyr are plenty, beginning with council and ending with filling the roles of the Keisari in the case of her absence. The Vor'nyr is a trusted ally of the Keisari and a highly respected individual within Winterhelm.
Drakrisar - A strong and battle hardened individual. The Drakrisar is revered for their skill in battle, their resilience in times of war, and mind for strategy. The Drakrisar is a wolf close in station to the Hilmar, regarded highly as his right hand.
Líknarherra - The lead healer or other times referred to as Mage. The Líknarherra holds great knowledge of herbs and plant life, using their skill to lead the healers beneath them. The Líknarherra is a wise wolf, usually older in age, but this is not always the case.
Vakdraumar - The 'interpreter of dreams'. The Vakdraumar of Winterhelm is a highly spiritual individual, considered the closest wolf to Winterhelm's praised deity. The Vakdraumar is heeded as wise council during times of strife, and often consulted.
Skaar - A highly stealthy individual, heeded as the head of Sentries and Sparrows within Winterhelm. The Skaar is a wolf fleet of foot and swift, capable of sneaking to and fro without being detected by rival wolves or packs.
Vor'nyr — @Aruna
Drakrisar — @Cain
Líknarherra — @...
Vakdraumar — @...
Skaar — @...
Ravenga - The Ravenga are the epitome of valor and strength, Knights sworn to protect Winterhelm and its territory. A guardian with unyielding loyalty, the Ravenga stands at the forefront of defense, always ready to defend their packmates. They lead with courage, integrity, and chivalry, embodying the principles of honor and duty.
Vakther - The Vakther are watchful individuals who behave as the pack's vigilant eyes and ears, entrusted with the task of monitoring the surrounding territory and assessing potential threats. They relay valuable information to the pack's leadership, helping to formulate defensive strategies.
Hersir - The Hersir are staunch defenders entrusted with the responsibility of safeguarding the Winterhelm wolves and land. Tasked with patrolling the rugged and unforgiving terrain, their watchful presence is a bulwark against intruders and external threats.
Sylvaros - The Sylvaros are tasked with the art of gathering intelligence used in times of war or conflict from both within and beyond the realm. Like a hawk in flight, their watchful eyes miss nothing, and they possess the keen ability to move unnoticed in the world.
Ravenga — @...
Vakther — @...
Hersir — @...
Sylvaros — @...
Storslakt - The Storslakt specialize in bringing down large game. They are responsible for ambushing, and capturing substantial prey like deer, boar, and other sizable game animals. Their expertise ensures a steady supply of meat to feed the Pack.
Pyra - The Pyra focuses on stockpiling and ensuring the longevity of food resources. They are skilled in preservation techniques and storing away food for later consumption. They also guard the resources, and determine who eats what.
Velerzian - The Velerzian excel in tracking prey and navigating the wilderness. They use their keen senses and knowledge of the land to locate and pursue quarry effectively. Their expertise is instrumental in guiding Storslakt and ensuring successful hunts.
Lokjager - The Lokjager are wily and cunning specialists of the hunt, focusing on the art of chasing, baiting, and luring prey. Their expertise lies in the use of various techniques to deceive and capture elusive quarry.
Storslakt — @...
Pyra — @...
Velerzian — @...
Lokjager — @...
Sarion - The Sarion are skilled healers, shamans and caretakers of the Pack. They are well-versed in the arts of herbalism and first aid, with an extensive knowledge of plants and their medicinal properties. Maesters tend to the injured and unwell.
Vyruscept - The Vyruscept are wise and experienced wolves who serve as advisors and counselors to the pack, especially to high-ranking members. Their role extends beyond logistical responsibilities; they are also revered for their sagacity and guidance.
Verndari - The Verndari are responsible for assisting with various communal tasks, such as caring for the young, maintaining public den areas, and ensuring the comfort of their packmates. Attendants may choose to rank here, but it can also be a rank of punishment.
Unkastor - The Unkastor are newcomers, younger individuals, or wolves who have not yet gained recognition within the Pack. Those unproven are often eager to demonstrate their worth. Unproven will often be pushed around, or simply not tolerated.
Sarion — @Adorre
Vyruscept — @...
Verndari — @...
Unkastor — @Vhaenyra, @Yvaine, @Ragweed, @Whitewall
Many of the practices of Winterhelm have been carried on since it was formed, however, they are ever-changing and evolving around the way the pack is led and lived in. Crueler practices as well as gentler ones have come and gone, all hinged on the current status and direction of the pack. However, one thing will never change: Winterhelm will never forget the season it has its roots in, having grown used to and adapted for snow almost all-year round. The longest of blizzards are nothing but mere hurdles for those born and bred withWinterhelm's blood in their veins — with even the youngest of pups proving to be hardy against the frost and illness inherent to the cold. All of this is held in equilibrium with a respect for the wintertime and the forces that drive it generation after generation; it is said you can never take the northern wind out of a Winterhelm wolf once they have bore its mark.
SŌNAR'S ĒLĪ ARGHUGON — Winter's First Hunt, — As the autumn fully plummets into winter, the pack embarks on the first hunt of the season. It is prepared for as though it will be the last hunt of their lives. They will travel further and longer than usual, working together to collectively hunt and capture the first game of the season. It is a peoples' practice, designed to wish for good fortune and harmony with each other through the worst of the frost to come.
ĀNOGAR LETAGON — The Blood Bonding Ritual, — This small ritual involves the exchanging of blood, a small amount that neither party would notice, but enough to stain their fur. This practice symbolizes a lifelong connection of loyalty. It is one undertaken in almost complete privacy, as it is a promise to one another, making an audience unnecessary. Two wolves can conduct Ānogar Letagon at any time they feel; but often it is believed it is strongest when undertaken at the start of winter, so that it might be tested over the course of the season.
NIGHTWATCH, — The wolves take turns participating in the Nightwatch — a practice once upheld in Winterhelm's former land to watch for dangerous beasts and enemy packs, it is continued as a disciplinary and protective measure. During this vigil, they maintain a silent, solitary watch over the pack''s territory, ensuring protection during the most vulnerable hours. Each night, a different wolf must take this mantle, but it is usually often denoted to the lowest in ranking — seeing as they are eager to prove their worth.
MŌRĪ LIMAGON HEN SŌNAR — Last Howl of Winter, — Also known as the Last Cry of Winter. When spring arrives and the harshness of winter begins to wane, the pack comes together to conduct the Mōrī Limagon Hen Sōnar, welcoming the transition to the milder seasons. It's also a recognition for any who struggled through the weather or duty, especially those that may have even been lost to it.
STORMCALLER'S VIGIL, — Wolves facing challenges, hardships, or unrelenting inner-turmoil may undertake the Stormcaller's Vigil. It is a solitary night spent on a high peak during a snowstorm — it is often thought that the climb to the peak is meant to test the body and mind, with some wolves even recalling lost memories, as though their death is upon them. It is said that during this vigil, the wolf will find insight and maybe even answers to their problem. However, they must know that no one will ever truly understand what they have uncovered in their pilgrimage, and it is a token of truth given to them and them only.
BANTIS VĀEDAR LILAGON — The Nightsong Dance, — Mated couples may engage in the Bantis Vāedar Lilagon to call for a divine blessing to their unborn, soon-to-be pups, but sometimes it might also simply be a show of love and affection between partners. It is a graceful and hypnotic form of movement, reflecting the serenity and strength of the winter landscape. It is a routine honed and practiced each time it is performed, with older wolves having it near perfect, showing their true and deep conviction to remain with their one and only. Oftentimes, it is a ceremony used to initiate reproduction.
LETAGON HEN PRŪMI — Tie of Hearts, — The union of two wolves is celebrated through ceremony. The couple will speak an oath, a solemn pledge to support and protect each other throughout their lives. These will be thought of over several days, and always personal to the wolves being paired. Marriage within Winterhelm is forever — the breaking up of couples is highly frowned upon, especially because it cheapens any words that were in their vows, and also lessen the regard given to those wolves who so easily breathed those promises only to fail them. Those who have been separated without the act of death will be branded unfit for marriage once more, and thus, excluded from much of the courting pool, lest the scorn placed on them spread to any possible amours.