Howling to the South

There is a grievously popular trend in fantasy fiction these days, wherein vampires are at war with werewolves. Yes, that’s cute. Reduce all of humanity to being bit players in a chess game between two powerful, supernatural evils alternately cast as the bad guys and the not-quite-as-bad guys. Throw in a fistful of glitter, and some melancholy brooding about death or some such rot, and call it a day.

In Slothjemia, this sort of ridiculousness isn’t given much thought. The handful of vampires in the region are a nuisance, but for a nation that prides itself on producing heroes of grand caliber, killing a vampire, or driving it out of the area, is not a daunting task. This is a place of superstition, and being told that there is a vampire nearby will cause a ruckus, but folks know how to sharpen a stake, and in even the smallest of communities, there is at least one person who has had to fight for a living, and knows their way around a battle axe. They might cause problems in countries far to the north of Slothjemia, but down here, vampires are just another thing that goes bump in the night.

Lycanthropes, on the other hand, are another issue entirely. True-blooded werewolves are impossible to spot, since they can hide their true selves, only changing into a snarling beast when they choose to. They don’t fear the daylight, they don’t have to kill people to survive, and frankly, they just are not as dreadful. As luck would have it, there are a fair number of lycanthropes that do just fine in Slothjemian society. And to the south, in the country of Brendelasia, werewolves are among the elite of the warrior class. Their toughness, bravery, and all-around blood-thirstiness are enough to inspire anyone to follow them into battle, and they have been instrumental in preventing Slothjemian advances into their territory.

The closest that one will find a bitter war between the undead and the werewolves is along the border of Brendelasia and Sikilia, and there are not many vampires in Sikilia so much as there are ghouls, liches, wraiths, and God knows what else. And you can bet your sweet bippy that nobody is trying to find a vampire-werewolf hybrid to unite them and end the war, or sweeping up some human girl with the emotional range of cardboard in a timeless love story about who gives a crap. Where there is a fight between Brendelasia and Sikilia, there is a lot of carnage, and if Slothjemia has a chance to help the Brendels, it absolutely will, because the Sikilians are just gross.

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