Primereth. A world inhabited by many creatures, all bestial in appearance, but many capable of great intelligence and skills. The Canines had their pack mentality and ability to come together as a strong and smart workforce. The Avians used their mastery and knowledge of the skies and wind patterns to help predict weather patterns. The Lapines possessed a oneness with life itself, granting them the knowledge of qi. The Cetacea, graceful masters of the sea and perhaps the most brilliant of all species, possessed the power of telepathy. However, for as intelligent and skilled as they all could be, none possessed the sheer creative potential of the Simians. They created new forms of technology to better the world, and to allow all races to live lives more comfortably. Within time, they began a grand era of Primereth, with many cities that possessed towers reaching up toward the clouds. And, in this time of comfort, many different races, who had long since been divided by differences and a need to control their own corners of the world, began to reside together in those cities, all working together for their united prosperity.

But, like all things, this eventually came to an end. One day, in the sixty-second year of the Steel and Stone Era, an epidemic was recorded. It was sweeping across much of the western hemisphere of Primereth. Within a year, thousands were stricken with this disease, and hundreds more were dying from it. In an attempt to cure this epidemic, the Simians' greatest medical scientists came together to forge a vaccine. At first, it seemed to work, as those that had been infected and then had the vaccine tested on showed improved vitals. However, all too late did they realise that they'd created something...worse. Their vaccine actually bonded to the disease, creating something completely new, an unholy union that mutated the bodies of those it rested in, and degraded their minds to their most primal forms: Those of hunters, killers, and conquerors of all kinds. Making matters worse was that the disease could be spread through bodily fluids, and in their degraded and deranged minds, those that were mutated were biting, clawing, and worse at anyone and anything in their path.

After three years, most of the western hemisphere had fallen into chaos, the Simians were an endangered species, and the Steel and Stone Era was replaced with the Primal Era. The united population of Primereth was becoming divided again, though not simply by race, but also in ideas and plans for the future, personal agendas and vendettas, and overall political power and influence. Cities became reconstructed to keep out those carrying the disease as best as possible. However, there remained fallen cities still rich in natural resources, now left untapped. For the sake of survival, many cities began creating teams of specialists, survivalists, and warriors that could brave the now ruined and dangerous world outside their towers to retrieve said resources. These teams would soon begin rivaling ones from other cities, and began to take up missions that involved interfering in the matters of other cities and their leaders.

And thus began...the Primal Strife.

- Dominic Lupus' Private Log #1

My name is Dominic Lupus. I currently lead Saint Whitewood's Second Tactical Operations Team. Of course, since that's a bit long, and we don't want to be known as the SWSTOT, we just call ourselves 'Whitewood's Claw'. Because of some...rather crazed events as of late, I've asked everyone on the team to begin keeping records of their own personal endeavors. Call then journals, I suppose. Might help us to recall where everything went wrong.

I suppose it really all started on the 19th Day of Autumn in the 7th Year of the Primal Era. I can remember standing in the woods, watching through my sniper scope at the two guards in front of Crimsomourn. We'd been sent to 'relieve' the leader of the remote outpost, Steven Caballus, of his mass medical supplies he'd been hording for himself and what few people were under his control, as opposed to sharing them with us and another town just southwest of us, as was the agreement. However, upon receiving our orders and gaining intelligence on the location, and of Caballus' 'harem' (at least that's what HE called it), I'd ordered an additional objective.

In hindsight, I suppose my superiors knew I'd order as much. It's also likely why I was given this operation. They knew my own personal disdain for such. You see, I use the term harem loosely because, in some areas of Primereth, harems are accepted as the members of such are usually those that joined at their own consent. Caballus' is no such harem, and thus is very, VERY illegal, immoral, and hits just enough of my own personal buttons to ensure that I'd not only carry out my orders to the best of my ability, but I'm sure my superiors were hoping I'd bury him for such.

At any rate, it was 8:62. The sun had just set, and the guards were out on patrol. Aside from the two at the front gate, there was one guard stationed at each of the look-out towers situated at the walled-off corners of the settlement. From my scope, I could tell each guard was carrying a sniper rifle with a laser sight. I guess after going most of Summer without handing out supplies as they were supposed to and all but completely cutting off communications, they were expecting visitors. This was going to require all of the guards on the towers and in front of the gate to be taken out of action at the same time.

Fortunately, as I've made clear, I wasn't going into this operation alone. Within seconds of each other, four figures began to reach the edge of the woods on all sides of Crimsomourn, in all-black attires. Now we just needed our distraction, and luckily, we wouldn't have to wait long, as the two guards at the front gate suddenly began to shuffle a bit as they were overtaken by a rather overwhelming scent being guided their way by a gentle breeze. I almost felt bad for them. I've smelled that smell, and it's terrible, more than enough to take their focus off of anything else. The figures at the edge of the woods quickly leapt out and began scaling the walls with their claws, making it just to the edge of the towers. Seeing this as my cue, I took aim as the guards at the gate got in just the right position and secured two kills with a single shot. With them down, the guards on the front two towers looked over to see what had happened, giving them just enough time to be caught from behind, as was repeated by the rear tower guards.

I sighed, sliding on a gas mask and trudging over to the gate, quickly followed by two more of my teammates: A skunk named Tracy Moufette, and a bat named Jacob Vesp, the latter of whom was also wearing a mask. "Good work on the distraction."

"I'm a little surprised that worked, to be honest," Tracy admitted, her usual long, white curly locks tied back out of her face.

"That's because you've never had to smell the smell," Jacob pointed out.

"I can smell the smell, thank you," Tracy replied, "it just doesn't smell BAD to me. In fact, in my old home, that smell was considered an aphrodisiac."

From what I'd heard, this was correct. In fact, the entire Moufette family are considered the most desirable family among all Mephits. Judging solely by Tracy, regardless of my own issues, it's easy to tell that she likely had a number of males and females chasing after her tail where she used to live: She exudes beauty in nearly every way. Still, apparently, part of what makes her family so desirable are the odors they can exude...I just can't agree with that part. Apparently, I'm not alone in that sentiment.

"You'll forgive me if I don't feel the urge to mate whilst I vomit," Jacob snarked as the three of us waited at the gate. Fortunately, for the sake of putting that argument to rest, we wouldn't wait long, as the gate was slowly opened by one of the figures in black: A porcupine with green-dyed fur and long spines.

"Hey, nice take-down, rookie," Jacob complimented as we slipped inside.

The porcupine, Percy Pine, simply sighed. "How long am I gonna be 'the rookie'? I've been on the team since last Winter."

"The burden of being the newest member of the team, I'm afraid," Garrison Chit-Tora, a cheetah and member of the team, said rather snootily as he dropped down nearby. "Blame yourself for joining so late into our existence."

I fought back the urge to groan and/or smack Garrison across the face, instead asking "Where's your sister?"

"Securing the perimeter with Gang, who had better be keeping his hands to himself," Garrison growled.

"...Okay, you KNOW that Gang isn't like that," Tracy pointed out.

"Well, he better not be feeling the need to change his ways, is all I'm saying," Garrison insisted.

I couldn't stop from rolling my eyes. Garrison, having been adopted by the Toras, was always finding new ways to take being protective of his new sister, Katrina, to whole new levels. Of course, we all understood wanting to preserve his new family. He'd been forced to watch his old one ripped apart before his eyes. Now he was adopted into a new family and with a younger sibling to protect. That was easy to understand...Being a snooty bastard, however, that was just Garrison being Garrison.

"Jacob, go join them," I ordered, putting an end to the conversation. "Garrison, any sign of Claire?"

"Not yet, which means she's probably with the other females," Garrison replied as Jacob took off into the sky.

"Was it really a good idea to send her in alone?" Tracy inquired, sounding concerned.

"She was the best one for the job," I answered, looking the area over. "You three, secure the medical supplies, and try to find something big with wheels. We're gonna need it to evac the supplies and anyone in Caballus' house."

"And what are you gonna do?" Percy asked, confused.

"I've got a horse to take out back," I replied, strapping my rifle to my back. "Move out."

"Yessir," Percy replied as he and the others headed to a small warehouse on the west side of the settlement. Alone, I lowered myself to all fours and dashed toward the centre house in Crimsomourn. According to intelligence, that was Caballus' residence. Spotting a few crates stacked up the side of one building like a small pyramid, I used them to scale my way to the roof and then leap from it to the next until I found myself atop the centre house. Locating a window with a balcony, the window to Caballus' room, I slowly slipped down onto it as quietly as I could, drawing my rifle. The window was slid open quite a bit, enough for me to dive through.

Why would he open it that much? I thought before the answer suddenly hit me. ...Oh, for the love of...

Quickly diving through the open window, I tucked and rolled to my feet, sniper rifle pointed forward. Sure enough, a quick scan of the room confirmed everything: There, in fact, was Steven Caballus, naked as the day he was born, tied spread eagled to his bed, face down with a ball gag stuck in his mouth, and not looking happy at all to be in such a position. And kneeling at the foot of the bed was Claire Xiǎotùzi, my most trusted friend and ally, slipping her somewhat raggish clothes back on, and looking at me with a face that just said '...What?'.

I shook my head, lowering my rifle. "You couldn't at least wait until I got past the gate?"

AUTHOR'S NOTES: Hello, and welcome to my newest project, Primal Strife. And no, that wasn't my first choice of titles, but Beast Wars was already taken. lol The idea behind the project was simple: Anthropomorphic creatures in something akin to a zombie apocalypse. From there, it integrated lots of real human aspects, like crime, political strife, warfare and indulgence even in the face of destruction, and so on. Even the creatures inhabiting this world are allegories of us. Think of the different species groupings (canines, felines, rodents, avians, aquatic mammals, etc.) as examples of different races, and the different kinds of species within those groups like different families that are part of the same ethnicity. Even their family names in this story are their species name in a different language (Lupus is Latin for Wolf, Xiǎotùzi is Chinese for Rabbit, etc.).

I should also explain that Primereth is a bit different from Earth in terms of time. For the sake of giving SOME common ground, seconds are the same, but from there, it's completely different: there's 100 seconds in a minute, 100 minutes in an hour, 10 hours in a day, 75 days in a season, and 4 seasons in a year. No months, only the four seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn.

Regarding the inhabitants of Primereth, their skeletal structures are still relatively the same as the creatures they're based off of, just bigger. They can stand on their hind legs just fine and move around like us, but they're still a bit faster on all fours, and their front paws more resemble hands. Likewise, anything with wings in real life and not arms will have wings in place of their arms, and feather-covered hands at the ends of them. I'll get more into how other kinds of creatures work when we come to them.

Last thing: About the sex involved in this story. I was on the fence about involving sex, and ultimately, the part of me that wanted to include it was the part that won out due to the simple fact that...well, animals mate. It's kind of a thing, and to pretend otherwise is just dumb. For those uncomfortable with that, I should note that, due to the restrictions of this site, I will not be going into graphic detail when it comes to sex in this story... ... ...and, for those that don't mind and would actually want to read the details, I plan to post an uncensored version of this story on AdultFanfiction. When I've done so, I'll be posting a link to it in my profile.

Anyway, that's it for this chapter, and I should note that the first few chapters are basically meant to set up story elements and characters, so just bear with me for now. Ja né!