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Stalking-Wolf and the Flesh Ripper

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It has a dozen names in a dozen lands. It is the hunger that cannot be satisfied.
—The Curse of the Wendigo

In an age long forgotten, when the veil of reality and illusion was paper-thin, there was a man named Stalking-Wolf. Stalking-Wolf was not a warrior, nor was he an elder. Stalking-Wolf was but a musician. But in these days, music was a rare gift, and it was only through singing or the whistling of the wind through the trees that gave the harmonic sound of music, and even then it was only so satisfying. But even with the joyful sound of music being an uncommon treat, life was good for Stalking-Wolf and his tribe. But no good things last.

The village elder, Running-Bear, discovered that food and people began to go missing. Missing people and food were not uncommon, as the creatures of the forest did not always just hunt one another, but it was uncommon for such a thing to happen for such a long period of time. In the third week of such happenings, Running-Bear sent for a warrior to constantly patrol the village. This did not last long, for the next day, the warrior was found bleeding out, leaning against a stump. He vaguely described a figure, somewhere between beast and man, before he perished. Running-Bear was distraught, and sent for someone to track down the beast.

Even so, none were brave enough to find the beast, and Running-Bear grew more and more nervous. Finally, Stalking-Wolf grew brave enough to find the beast, and told everyone of his plan. He was chased away by laughter, for he was not a warrior, nor an elder. He lacked both experience and fighting skills, but this did not stop him for even if he died, he would not be missed. So Running-Bear allowed this, and Stalking-Wolf set off into the wilderness to find the killer. He walked for many days and nights before he came to a cave, deep within the side of a mountain, with bones and blood littering the outside of the cave. And, from the depths of the cave, a pair of eyes, yellow and glowing like searchlights, glared up at him. He had found the den of the Wendigo, the Flesh Ripper.

The Wendigo emerged from the cave, somewhere between a deer and a human, with powerful muscles and sharp claws. It growled up at him, but Stalking-Wolf merely sang as the wind whistled through the trees, and the Wendigo listened, for it had never heard music before. When Stalking-Wolf had finally stopped singing, the Wendigo was too pleased to attack, and asked what Stalking-Wolf wanted to happen. Stalking-Wolf requested that the Wendigo return the goods, but Wendigo could not do that, for he had already devoured them. Although he was displeased, he had a second plan. He asked the Wendigo to spread music to his tribe, for only the spirits knew the secrets of music, and he agreed. So the Wendigo mauled Stalking-Wolf, and when he had devoured his heart, he took his bones, and carved them with his claws to make flutes. He then took his tendons and skin and created the first drum, taking strips of flesh and more bones to create a lute. He then gave these gifts to the tribe, and so music was born.

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