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Our story begins in little patch of land bordering Texas and New Mexico Territory in the early 1800's known as the Northwind Basin. The development of the American railway brought life and vitality to the untamed West. Where there was once nothing but empty plains or frigid snow-capped mountains now sprang settlements all along the railway’s trail. The small towns of Blackacre and Twin Gulch had started the same way in 1815.
Blackacre began mostly as nothing more than a hovel of tents housing the railway workers in the valley of a small mountain range which protected it, but as the railway brought more settlers westward the small shantytown grew and became a thriving settlement. Shortly after in 1822, Twin Gulch was founded on the plains just a few miles south of Blackacre’s borders. Named as such for the plateau on which it sat overlooking the twin gulches to the east, the city was quickly established itself as a viable settlement and trading post.
The year is now 1872. Blackacre, Twin Gulch, and the many small ranches and homesteads in the Northwind Basin all depend on one another for survival. The promise of gold and the chance to carve out a plot of land brought more and more settlers from the east, just good folks trying to start a life for themselves by working hard… mostly.
The Civil War is long over, but the world is anything but civil. Small fish like outlaws, gunslingers, and bandits run a constant racket of petty crime throughout Northwind Basin, stealing a few horses or starting fights in the local taverns. For the most part, it’s nothing the local deputies and marshals can’t handle. But the real threats are a little harder to contain, though the marshals would have you believe otherwise. No matter how much they tried, they just can’t seem to round up the two rival gangs that have made the small towns of Blackwater and Twin Gulch their feeding grounds. Some folks say they ain’t trying hard enough – others claim they’re in cahoots with the bandits and are being paid off to let things slide. There’s probably truth in both claims.
The Farrow Creek boys, run by Abraham Lewin and named as such for the small mountain river on which they've made their settlement, rove Blackacre territory. A regular cavalcade of stagecoach heists and highway robberies, the Farrow Creek gang was a name known by almost everyone in the county since all the way back when Blackacre was founded. A more recent addition to the Basin was the Grayhollow gang. They have taken up residence in the old silver mining camp in Twin Gulch territory and maintain their base of operations there, led by Rufus 'Old Fuss' Buck. Not to be outdone by their Farrow Creek rivals, the Grayhollow boys and their endeavors were ambitious and they quickly gained a solid foothold in the Northwind Basin.
But what people thought were two rival gangs simply vying for cattle-rustling territory was something far more sinister. Humanity had never quite understood that they were not the top of the food chain. The two gangs were powerful forces to be reckoned with and it wasn't just because of their corrupt connections or sheer firepower - it was their feral nature. Farrow Creek and Grayhollow were two rival lycan packs, vying both for criminal superiority and their pack's survival for the last forty or so years.
Despite the relative comfort that local marshals and deputies provided to assure the people’s safety, the folks of Blackacre and Twin Gulch were in danger of much more than a stickup gone sideways or a few head of cattle being rustled. Dark things lurked in the mountains and ran the plains at night. Stories of howling wolves and bloodthirsty monsters spread like wildfire. Surely old wives’ tales told to get children to behave… until people started going missing.
Several months ago, word began to crawl through the taverns and whorehouses of folks wandering into the woods and mountains and not coming back. Humans and lycans alike began disappearing and a foul stench of old blood started to taint the basin, but tensions really culminated when Old Fuss disappeared. Lewin was certain the that Rufus’ beta, Victor Avery, killed him so he could take over as Alpha, though as far as the Grayhollow gang is concerned Old Fuss’ disappearance is still a mystery. It was the ‘old blood’ coming back to reclaim the Basin long lost to the wolves more than a decade ago. A conclave of monsters led by a Queen hell bent on revenge and an overwhelming thirst for blood. She was a master of manipulation and it wouldn’t be long before the vampires infected Blackacre and Twin Gulch. It was impossible to know how long the Queen had been planning her return, but now that they’d returned one thing was for certain: the quiet Northwind Basin wasn’t going to stay quiet for much longer.