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Traditional Werewolf Funeral

This tradition is largely lost to the world, due to the fact that the ancestral homeland of the Werewolves is currently the place were they suffer the most systematic discrimination. The humans in control of the Western Republic fear that werewolves will try to rise to power again if they are exposed to their millenary traditions and culture, so they go through great lengths to prevent this culture from flourishing.   The Western Republic has painted werewolf culture as barbaric, savage, primitive, and in direct opposition to all the human values that now control the land. Detailed sociological studies of werewolf society before the revolution and installation of the republic is a criminal offence.   However, there is on place in the Western Republic were the government cannot reach and has no power. The small village of Slurgh has kept key werewolf traditions alive through the centuries, and provides a safe place for those running from state oppression.   One of the traditions they have kept alive is the traditional werewolf funeral. The death of a werewolf is a big occasion that engages the entire village in mourning and rituals to guarantee the dead's safe passage to the afterlife.

History

It is believed this ritual has been remained largely unchanged from the time werewolves ruled the Western Continent and sought expansion into other realms. Once humans took control of the world, werewolves' funeral practices were forbidden, and those found practising them in secret were killed on the spot.   Refugees from Slurgh have preserved the ritual away from the government's prying eyes. They are the only place in the world still following the practice as it was originally meant to be done (other continents have developed their own traditions from migrant werewolves).

Execution

Funerals take place at every full moon, when the body of the deceased takes its true form for the last time. Werewolf constitution prevents a body from decaying after death, so even someone who died the day after a full moon will appear to be simply asleep at the time of the funeral.   From the time of someone's death until the funeral, the body will remain fully dressed in the person's favourite clothes and placed on a special bed in their family home. Friends come to pay their respects by placing their hand on the deceased's forehead while announcing their bravest achievement in life in an attempt to persuade the gates of the afterlife to let them through. The belief is that each stories opens the door a tiny little bit, and so the deceased must have a collection of stories large enough to create a big enough gap for them to pass through. Otherwise, they will remain stuck in this world without a body, which will make them gradually forget who they are and drift away into nothingness. The afterlife is believed to give them a new body that never strays from its "true" werewolf form, and there all werewolves exist forever, fighting and frolicking for eternity.   On the day of the funeral, before the moon rises in the sky, the villagers prepare the body by stripping it naked, enveloping it in a special red cloth, and laying it on an altar that has been placed at the exact spot the first rays of moonlight reach the land. When the moon is about to rise, the village gathers around the body and they take on their true shapes together and they destroy the body inside the cloth until it loses its distinctive shape (the clothe is there so that the mess is contained, and so that nobody feels bad about attacking a loved one). When the body is no longer recognisable as such, the cloth is taken away and the werewolves feast on the mangled remains.   The funeral lasts as long as the moon is above the sky.

Related Ethnicities

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