Changeling are a subgroup of humans that have animalistic traits and the ability too actually turn into an animal.
Traits: changeling are stronger and more durable the regular humans or psy. Those whose animal have greater then human senses will also even human form. Those who change into mammalian preadators can Demishift manifesting fangs and claws. it is thus far unknow what traits changelings whose animals don't have claws can manifest. Most belong to a pack(flock/herd/ect) even those whose animals are soiltary. Many are infertile unless mated or in a stable relationship. They possess a nature resistance to telepathic manipulation and attacks from anyone below gradient 5 is surviveable. there animal is with them consently regardless of form and sometimes fights the human part for control.
Terms: territory a pack can claim any public land as it's territory,provideing they can hold it, and are afterward responible for the land, plants, animals, and people in that territory. they have legal authority in that territory.
Dominence is basically how strong a changeling is. this is not just physical strength, Mercy is noted as being able to take down most males twice her size. it seems to be a combination of physical ablity and force of personality. Dominate changelings heal faster then less dominate ones and have strong protective instintics.
Alpha (also herd master or wing leader) is basically the most dominate member of a pack. he or she can be chanllaged for leadership but good leader rarely are even after weakened by age.
sentinal/leutinent are a group of the most dominate and most trusted members of a pack. they make a blood oath to the alpha and are tied to him on a psychic level. they are both his body guards and should it become nessassary his exacutioners.
Each pack is autonomous, there is no overall leadership.
Loyalty first and forall goes to the pack. Within a pack family ties exists.
It is possible for another pack to infiltrate the territory and take over by destroying their power structure.
Each pack has an alpha, whether female or male, that leads the pack. He is supported by his sentinels or lieutenants.
Some alphas have a scent that marks them (like Kit), others develope those senses later (like Remi).
While it is important to be physically invulnerable, an alpha can last past his prime physical age (like Isablla). They simply delegate actions to their soldiers (keeping discipline and enforcing justice).
Aphas sometimes come under different names. The facons call them Wing Leader for example.
Known alphas: Lucas Hunter (DarkRiver - prominently leopard pack), Hawke Snow (SnowDancer - wolf pack), Remington Denier (RainFire - small feline pack), Miane Leveque (BlackSea - sea changeling), Isabella Garcia (AzureSun - leopard), Kiya Teague (IceRock), Parrish ♰ (PineWood), Monroe Halliston ♰ (SkyElm - ocelot), Aria ♰ (WindHaven), Adam Garrett (WindHaven - falcons) and Selenka Durev (BlackEdge - wolf)
Sentinels / Lieutenants Edit
These changelings form a bloodbond with their alpha, pledging themselves to the pack. They are second in command to the alpha of the pack, sentinels in feline packs with lieutenants being in other packs including wolves. If an alpha is causing a pack to loose hope, humanity, finances or causing harm to the pack, the sentinels and lieutenants have the right to take charge of the pack and kick the alpha out of leadership. They are also the first line of defence in the pack.
Mates are the only thing that (can) stand above the pack. Since changelings only mate once in a lifetime, these bonds are considered precious. Most changeling pairs that mate that don't share a pack, one of them will join the other one. For example, Juanita, Mercy's mentor mated outside the pack and left.
There are probably several "options" (Hawke was sure he had found his mate, but could later mate with Sienna), but the only choice is to wether or not to start the process. As soon as the mating dance begins, it is the only way. While the males know at first when the mating dance begins, it's the female who has to accept the final step to make the mating complete. While that is said, in Riaz and Adria's case, Riaz found his mate but she was married to another before he met Adria. The mating bond between him and the woman disintergrated when both the human and wolf side decided that he wanted Adria.
Mates are not limited to changelings either. There are several examples of changelings being mated to humans, other changeling breeds and even Psy.
Mating bonds can be seen (by Psy) as they exists on a psychic level.
Some changeling mates also marry in a marriage ceremony as well as a mating ceremony, but that is normally if they have a human mate.
Healers, like sentinels/lieutenants, can stand above and reject an alpha's decision. Healers are sacred to packs and are not to be harmed. It is simple Changeling Law and Protocal that healers from any pack, whether that be ally or enemy, be treated fairly and not harmed. Healers also don't choose to roam as they like to remain close to their packmates and everyone respects them.
Changeling Groups Edit
- Main article: Changeling Groups
For DarkRiver go here.
For SnowDancer go here.