Werecreatures are humans who are able to transform into a specific animal. The transformation into animals seems to be painless eventually, but can be painful at first. It also has a physical effect on the person whilst in human form.
The origin of werecreatures is currently uncertain. At least one pack of werewolves' origin is described in their tribe's legends of Spirit Warriors, as one day a man left his body in spirit and was forced to share the body of a wolf nearby after his own body was stolen by another spirit. Then he was able to transform back into human through the wolf. His children and descendants were afterwards able to shape-shift into werewolves too, and would do so whenever danger threatened them, their families or the tribe. However it is not known if this myth is true or not, and whether other werecreatures were originally people who left their bodies in spirit form and shared the body with an animal. Some other tribes share similar legends, while others have none.
Being a werecreature seems genetic in most cases, inherited even from only one side of the family. However, weretigers are known to also be able to pass the species on with a scratch or a bite. None of the other werecreatures do this, although their distant cousins Children of the Moon do. In some species a particular trigger is needed for an individual to begin phasing, such as anger or the presence of a vampire nearby. The first phasing also tends to occur at around puberty, or in one's teens or early twenties. If the transformation is not triggered by this age, the trait will usually skip by that generation.
The appearance of werecreatures can vary. However they are born as humans and have the capability to phase into their wereform after they have reached adulthood. The transformation is shown to be quick, for any werecreature, and each person can shapeshift into only one type of werecreature, as the capability of doing so is inherited. A hybrid has once been shown to form when two different species of werecreatures mate to create a new species of werecreature. However, on another occasion one species turned out to be dominant, and was the one which passed on to the next generation. This could have been because one gene was more dominant than the other, or because one parent was an Alpha while the other was not.
The human form appears mostly normal, but they tend to be particularly strong and muscular, even without any effort to put weight or musculature on. Many species are also immortal while they phase, stuck appearing in their mid-twenties. If they are younger than this in phasing, they will age rapidly to reach this physical age. There is a tendency for werewolves to be of Native American descent, although it isn't essential, and werelions tend to have blonde or ginger hair in their human form too.
In their wereform, a werecreature usually resembles the natural creature, but is often larger. Their colouring is usually natural, too.
Werecreatures have been shown to possess several superhuman gifts. When transforming into their werecreature form, some creatures have certain qualities than no other form of shapeshifter will have. Werewolves have shown the capability of communicating telepathically within their pack, as well as werelions, but on a weaker scale. Werebears have shown the capability to curl up into a ball in order resist physical attack, and the ability to hibernate. Weretigers have shown the capability to pass on their species through a bite or scratch as well as through genetics.
All werecreatures, however, have enhanced speed, strength and senses, which are further enhanced in their were-form but also still displayed in human form. They can also often heal rapidly, and have a high resistance against illness and different drugs. Some werecreatures have a higher than normal body temperature, which gives an immunity to cold and wet conditions. Most werecreatures also do not age, since they are frozen physically in time while still phasing. It means that female werecreatures would need to stop phasing temporarily in order to get pregnant. However, a part type one vampire and werecreature hybrid could possibly conceive will still phasing, and would then find herself unable to phase during her pregnancy.
Some werecreatures have shown to possess an extra gift also. It is unknown how this came to be, but could be the same explanation for why some vampires can obtain superhuman gifts. One vampire explained this as "everything is a cocoon when you are human, but by turning into a vampire everything opens to a new and scarier you". In most cases, the gift is not accessible until they've phased for the first time, but rare cases have shown a gift appearing even before birth.
Within werewolves and werelions, most packs and prides have a designated hereditary leader, termed an Alpha. This Alpha can command the others, over-riding their will, making it actually physically impossible to do otherwise. The only person who could defy these commands would be a rival Alpha within the pack, and this is rare.
Many werecreatures also possess the power to imprint. This is described as a way of finding or recognising one's soulmate, and described as if "gravity moves" when the werecreature sees that individual for the first time and meets his or her eyes. The imprintee becomes the most important person in their life, they would do anything to keep him or her happy and safe, and they would die for him or her. Almost every imprint becomes a romantic relationship.