Blood Trade

When The Snap pandemic struck the world in early 2018, the only people unaffected by the disease were the werewolves who, living in close quarters and unsanitary conditions within the Sectors, should have been struck hardest. The werewolf immunity was a mystery to scientists until Elkyone Laboratories in Toronto discovered special antigens and white blood cell properties in werewolf blood which granted immunity not only to the Snap, but also to numerous common blood-borne viral diseases including HIV, Hepatitis, and malaria. Feeling repressed by humans, werewolves were understandably unwilling to donate blood freely. So began the Blood Trade. Most world governments have installed bloodbanks within their Sectors to allow werewolves to sell their blood in exchange for food stamps or movement up the ladder. However, most werewolves find it more lucrative to sell their blood Down Below using privately owned bloodbanks. The Blood Trade has been the main source of contraband goods such as guns, drugs, tobacco, and technical equipment in the Sectors for the past several years.


There are several primary means for a werewolf to make a living via phlebotomy, the practice of drawing blood. One option is to “donate” blood to government-run clinics, such as Stouffville Hospital in Sector IX using well-maintained and sanitized equipment. Blood clinics are equipped with phlebotomy kits including gloves, antiseptics and disinfectants, gauze pads or cotton balls, bandages, blood collection tubes and bags, needles and sharps disposal containers, safety goggles, arterial puncture equipment, skin puncture equipment, venipuncture equipment, tourniquets, and vein locating devices. Many werewolves opt for this method due to its sterility – almost guaranteed not to proliferate any lupine diseases – and its legality. However, returns are small, often taking the form of food stamps.

An alternative is to sell blood in return for weaponry or illegal goods Down Below, which is generally considered far more lucrative. Werewolves will draw blood themselves using syringes, or will use their pack’s communal blood bagging equipment. Most Alphas ensure that their pack is in possession of several phlebotomy kits, however they are often overused and prone to wear-and-tear. They also carry a high risk of infection, and some fear the practice of using communal kits could be a cause of massive casualties if there was ever an outbreak of Lunapeste within a Sector.

Typically, 500 milliliters of blood can be given in a single sitting, though a Fireblooded werewolf can give up to 800 milliliters…if you can get him to stand still long enough. It takes 2-3 days for that volume of plasma to be replaced, and an average of 36 days for bone marrow to replace the red blood cells, making red blood cells the limiting factor for phlebotomy. Most werewolves can remove a maximum blood volume only once or twice a month without it severely affecting them physically, although werewolves with Regeneration can harvest blood as much as twice a week with no negative effects.

Supply and Demand

The Blood Trade presents unique challenges to werewolves attempting to make a living from it. A major hurdle is the problem of transportation. Because electricity does not typically function in Sectors, refrigeration is not available, and blood has a short shelf life of no more than seven days. Getting blood transported through Underground channels in a timely manner is a necessity. In addition to this, werewolf blood must undergo a fractionation process to filter out the lycanthropy-causing elements before it can be transfused, to prevent the recipient from inheriting lycanthropy.

There is high demand for werewolf blood in the human world, as it grants immunity to most common viral diseases, including the Snap. For the treatment to be effective, a patient must undergo a full blood transfusion of approximately 5 liters. (Obtaining this volume of blood would take a single werewolf about 10 months). As a result, werewolf blood is very expensive. This has given rise to the practice of poaching in which criminally-minded humans, and sometimes other Tropo, will hunt and kill werewolves in order to harvest a whole body’s worth of blood at once. The government has been cracking down on poachers by making rules for entry into the Sectors more stringent.

Regular blood donation carries some risks. Hypovolemic reactions are common in werewolves attempting to harvest more blood than their body can afford, causing a rapid change in blood pressure and fainting. Repeated puncturing of the same skin areas has been known to lead to arterial puncture, delayed bleeding, and injury to tendons and nerves in some werewolves. Some werewolves have displayed adverse reactions to the black market sodium citrate used to keep the blood from clotting. Probably the greatest risk comes from equipment which has not been properly sterilized, leading to infection or werewolf-specific diseases.

Different blood types are differentially rare, and have corresponding levels of value. More common blood types are in greater demand, but also more readily available.

The Rh Factor Incompatibility Problem

Different blood types occur at different frequencies within the population, and the blood type of a human recipient must be a match with their werewolf donor. O+ is a universal donor type, and also the most common blood type. It is followed in frequency by A+ and B+. AB+, O-, A- and B- all occur at low frequencies, with AB- as the least common of all. The Blood Trade initially encountered an unexpectedly high number of cases of acute hemolytic reaction in patients due to werewolves lying about their blood type to make a better sale. To avoid this problem, the Underground now requires any werewolves which request to utilize their blood transportation services to have their blood type verified and engraved on their dog tags. This problem became a lesser issue in 2020, when blood conversion, an experimental concept first proposed in 2007, was perfected. The process allows blood of types A, B, and AB to be converted to the universal donor type O using enzymes to remove red blood cell antigens. However, this does not aid in plasma compatibility. Today, O+ and O- are virtually the only blood types used for transfusion.

Blood conversion put werewolves of different blood types on a largely equal playing field in terms of blood prices, but a major difference between blood types remained: the Rh factor, positive or negative. Rh positive blood cannot be successfully transfused into an Rh negative individual, though Rh negative blood can be universally donated. As a result, Rh negative blood types remain more rare and valuable.

Written by: Skiecrow

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