Tribal Totem: Uktena

The Uktena tribe is one of the two remaining "Pure Ones" tribes; they, the Wendigo and the long-vanished Croatan lived in North America for thousands of years until the invasion of the so-called Wyrmcomer tribes of Europe some 500 years ago. Despite fierce fighting by the Uktena and Wendigo to help their Kinfolk preserve a traditional way of life, the Wyrmcomers and their Kinfolk swanned across the continent like a plague. The Wyrmcomers' Kinfolk, called the Wyrmbringers, slaughtered and confined the Native Americans over the next few centuries until, eventually, Native Americans were restricted to reservations spotted across the United States and Canada.

There were two possible responses to this great change in the population of the continent: fight it to the last, or accept it and integrate with the newcomers. The Wendigo chose the former road and the Uktena the latter, especially embracing those Asians and Africans the whites brought in as slaves. In the 21st century, the Uktena is one of the most ethnically diverse tribes in the world; Uktena have Kinfolk from Vancouver to Miami, Halifax to Los Angeles and just about every place in between. The majority of Uktena come from oppressed or lower class social groups.

In the ancient days, the Uktena were the shamans, and they have never lost this talent; indeed, it has grown as they and their Kinfolk lost power in the physical world. They have good relations with most nature spirits, and excel at creating fetishes and talens. They are considered some of the most talented and powerful shamans and occultists in the Nation. The Uktena have an insatiable thirst for discovering ancient secrets, and once discovered, at hiding and holding on to them. Some few Uktena, called Bane Tenders, choose the difficult and possibly corrupting task of monitoring foul Banes and Wyrmbeasts to make sure they remain bound and somnolent. While such knowledge has proved useful - the Uktena are exceptionally skilled at scouting out the presence of the Wyrm and other blight - it has come at a terrible price. Members of many tribes whisper that the Uktena have gotten too close to the secrets the Wyrm holds and that they themselves might soon walk the Black Spiral to join the forces of corruption.

The Uktena take their name from a Native American water spirit with the features of a serpent, cougar and deer, known for its love of secrets and disguising its appearance.