|This article is about the Druid species. You may be looking for Scott's boss Alan Deaton; the Beacon Hills High School and Eichen House counselor Marin Morrell; or the former high school English teacher Jennifer Blake, all of whom happen to be Druids.|
|“|| "All right... So this guy, is he a Druid?"|
"No. It's someone copying a centuries-old practice of a people who should have known better. Do you know what the word 'Druid' means in Gaelic?"
"'Wise oak.' The Celtic Druids were close to nature. They believed they kept it in balance. They were philosophers and scholars. They weren't serial killers."
Celtic Druids, also known simply as Druids, are a group of humans in the Teen Wolf series who have spent a great deal of their lives studying the supernatural world and the mystical arts and who are dedicated to maintaining the balance of nature. Legend has it that the majority of Druids have had a connection to Werewolves for millennia, and as a result, they are known as Emissaries, or advisers, to Werewolf packs, giving them guidance in their supernatural lives while also keeping them connected to their humanity.
This scholarly and diplomatic role is why they are known as Druids, as the word in Gaelic is said to mean "wise oak." However, Druids who act as Emissaries to a Werewolf pack typically keep their identities hidden from everyone except for the Alpha of the pack, although there are exceptions to this pattern, such as in the case of the McCall Pack; their Emissary, Alan Deaton, is known by and close to all of the members of the pack, and he encourages each one of them to consult him whenever they are in need of his counsel.
However, the Druid Emissaries' role as advisers to the Werewolves does not mean they are simply relegated to the sidelines; many Emissaries, such as Alan Deaton, participate in missions in an active capacity when necessary, as evidenced when Deaton spearheaded a dangerous mission to Japan in order to incapacitate a Yakuza boss and obtain the special letharia vulpina lichen needed to help Stiles stay in control of his body while possessed by the Nogitsune. Due to the multiple ways in which an Emissary can help their packs, Druids are typically very educated in a number of different fields, such as history and current events of the supernatural world, botany, folklore, mystical rituals, and foreign languages.
Druids, who in general are meant to remain neutral in their task as the maintainers of the balance of nature, do have a dark counterpart as well. These counterparts are known as a Darach, which in Gaelic translates to "dark oak," another apt name that describes their inner darkened nature, as they gain powers through ritual sacrifices. Depending on the types of sacrifices they commit, a Darach can gain enhanced powers ranging from telekinesis to super strength to astral projection.
|“|| "What is that?"|
"A Celtic five-fold knot. It's a Druid symbol. The air's different in here. Do you feel it? I think I know what this place is."
"Is that blood?"
"Sacrificial blood. We're in a Nemeton. It's a sacred meeting place. Ancient Celtic Druids would usually choose a large, older tree in a grove-- it would represent the center of the world. There was a belief that cutting or harming the tree in any way would cause serious problems for the surrounding villages."
"What sort of problems?"
"Fires, plagues, strife... death and destruction of all kinds."
Due to the secretive and mysterious nature of the Druids, their history remains mostly unknown at this time. However, according to legend, the Celtic Druids have been around for thousands of years, since the time of the Titans and the Gods of Olympus. In the story told to Scott McCall and Allison Argent by Gerard Argent, he explained that there were many people in Ancient Greece who believed that they owed their lives more to Prometheus, the Titan who gave humanity fire as a gift, than they did the Gods of Olympus. As a result, many named their children after the various Titans (such as Deucalion, the son of Lycaon) instead of the Olympians. Lycaon was especially disdainful toward the Olympians, to the point that he not only scorned them, but challenged them as well. One evening, Lycaon invited Zeus to a banquet, where he attempted to trick him into eating the flesh of a human, an act that enraged the Olympian sky-father so much that he summoned lightning bolts to strike Lycaon and his sons, cursing them by turning them into wolves.
According to Gerard, there is a lesser-known version of legend, which is that Lycaon and his sons sought out the Celtic Druids, who were believed to possess the ability to shapeshift, in hopes that they could help them return to their human forms. However, while the Druids were unable to undo the curse, they were able to help them maintain their connections to their humanity so that they could shift from human to Werewolf and back again at will. Because of the invaluable help the Druids provided the werewolves, many of them ended up becoming advisers to the Werewolf packs who became known as Emissaries, acting as guides through both the human and supernatural worlds and continuing to assist the Werewolves in maintaining the connections to their humanity. Emissaries seem to have their own careers in addition to their Druid practice that can aid them in their roles as advisers in other ways as well, such as working as doctors, teachers, and psychologists, among many other professions. This affords the Druids a variety of ways in which they can be of value to their packs.
It has been suggested that Druids can draw power from external energy sources, such as a Nemeton, which has acted as the sacred meeting place of Druids for centuries; according to Chris Argent, the Druids selected an older tree in a grove that would represent the center of the world, and because of the power it would gain from worship and sacrifices, it gained a power of its own that would cause the surrounding villages to suffer from fires, plagues, and other forms of strife if any harm came to the tree. The types of sacrifices the Druids would perform would vary based on the morality of the Druid in question and the time period, but a sacrifice could range from simply non-fatally spilling blood on the roots of the tree, killing a massive number of a certain animal, such as crows, or killing one or a trio of people of a specific type (such as virgins or healers) to gain a sympathetic power from it.
Characteristics and Culture
|“|| "All these symbols and things... the Triskeles, the bank logo, the Mountain Ash... all of it is from the Celtic Druids. And anyone who has ever looked up human sacrifice before knows that the Druids had a pretty big hard-on when it came to giving one up to the gods. You ever hear of the Lindow Man? 2,000-year-old body found in England? He was found strangled, head bashed in, throat cut-- three-fold death. They also found pollen grains in his stomach. Guess what favorite Druid plant that was?"|
"I'm just telling you everything you already know, aren't I? Then why aren't you telling us?"
As previously mentioned, Druids are simply humans who, through study of the mystic arts and the supernatural world, have gained a large amount of knowledge regarding rituals and their components, such as herbs like mistletoe. Among the rituals they can perform are surrogate sacrifice rituals and rituals to help restore suppressed memories. Druids also know a great deal about the supernatural world, especially Werewolves, Werecoyotes, and Banshees.
Druids are meant to maintain the balance of nature, which can be made easier if they are associated with a pack, since the shapeshifters can help them with this mission by using their powers defensively in the case that a supernatural being has amassed too much power. However, they can vary in how they maintain the balance; for example, Alan Deaton went out of his way to ensure Stiles Stilinski's survival while he was possessed by the Nogitsune by going to Japan to find a rare lichen with which to poison the Void Kitsune and helping the McCall Pack steal a Shugendo scroll that could help them exorcise them, whereas his sister, Marin Morrell, was okay with helping them out to an extent but made it clear that she would kill Stiles to prevent a further rampage if their other options failed, something that Deaton wasn't willing to do. On the extreme end of this belief, Jennifer Blake grew so desperate for vengeance against Deucalion and the Alpha Pack that she became a Darach, also known as a Dark Druid, during which time she committed at least two massive animal sacrifices as well as twelve human sacrifices to gain the power to take them down, despite the fact that gaining this much power also contributed to nature's imbalance.
As noted earlier, Druids use Nemetons, or a large older tree in a grove, as a sacred meeting place where they can gather for meetings or perform rituals and/or sacrifices. This tree will usually be identified as a Nemeton by the Celtic five-fold knot typically painted onto its roots. Druids also use a number of other symbols as well, including triskelions, which eventually became the symbol of the Hale Pack. In addition to symbols, the Druids also utilize numerous herbs and plants in their practice, such as Mountain Ash, which is incinerated rowan wood used as a protective substance against supernatural creatures, or mistletoe, which can be both a poison or a cure depending on how it is used.
Types of Druids
|“|| "The older wolves had a relationship with the Druids. They called them Emissaries. [...] The part that's lesser-known is how Lycaon sought out the Druids to help turn him back to human."|
"The belief was that the ancient Druids knew how to shapeshift. They couldn't make Lycaon and his sons human again, but they did teach them to shift back and forth. And so, the Druids became important advisers to the packs."
As stated above, Druid Emissaries act as advisers and guides to Werewolf packs (though they can vary in how they fulfill these tasks depending on what their "day job" is), and the majority of Emissaries' identities are kept secret from everyone in the pack but the Alpha, though there are exceptions to this rule. In general, most Emissaries act in a diplomatic fashion by helping their Alphas navigate territory disputes and interact with other packs, and are crucial in helping the packs maintain connections to their humanity. From there, individual Emissaries can have their own areas of expertise-- Alan Deaton, as a veterinarian, best serves his packs as a healer, whereas Marin Morrell, as a psychologist, is better at providing emotional and psychological support and comfort to her pack. It is unknown what Jennifer Blake's area of expertise was when she was an Emissary, but she seemed to have a very extensive understanding of the supernatural world.
It also seems that the relationships between Emissaries and their Alphas/pack members can vary based on the methods used by the Emissary in question. When Deaton was the Emissary to the Hale Pack, only Talia and Laura Hale knew of his identity, and he was said to be in love with Talia; conversely, while he is close to his new Alpha Scott McCall to the point of being a father-figure, Deaton's role as an Emissary to the McCall Pack is that of a friend, mentor, and healer who is known by and accessible to all members of the pack regardless of rank or species. Marin Morrell seemed close to Deucalion, which likely led her to decide to stay with him when he created the Alpha Pack, but she did not seem to have a close relationship with the others, as evidenced by the fact that Kali was willing to threaten her life to get Deaton to comply with her demands. It is unknown what kind of relationship Jennifer Blake had with Kali's original pack, but given Kali's comment that she loved Jennifer (when she was still known as Julia Baccari) indicates that they were very close as well.
|“|| "Stiles... You remember I told you 'Druid' is the Gaelic word for 'wise oak?'"|
"If a Druid went down the wrong path, the 'Wise Oak' was sometimes said to have become a 'Dark Oak.' There's a Gaelic word for that, as well-- 'Darach.'"
In the case where a Druid loses sight of their mission to maintain the balance of nature and begins to "go down the wrong path," they become a Darach, which usually entails performing ritual sacrifices to gain more powers. The powers a Darach can gain depend on the types of sacrifices that they commit, and are usually based on sacrificing a certain type of person, such as virgins, warriors, healers, philosophers, guardians, or animals; the powers gained will correspond with the sacrifices committed, such as gaining super strength from warriors, the ability to heal oneself or others from healers, etc.
It is also possible for a Darach to give their new powers an additional boost by sacrificing humans on telluric currents, or currents of geothermal energy, which are coincidentally numerous in and around the earth in Beacon Hills. When Jennifer performed her five-fold knot sacrifice ritual, she would capture her victims on a telluric current and then kill them on a convergence of currents, holding them captive in the interim in a place in the middle of the two aforementioned locations. By doing this, Jennifer became in-sync with the currents, allowing her to manipulate the earth and the weather within these currents. She planned to commit her final trio of sacrifices, the "guardians" (Noah Stilinski, Melissa McCall, and Chris Argent) on the roots of the Nemeton itself, though she was unsuccessful; it is unknown what kind of powers she could have attained had she succeeded.
Powers and Abilities
Druids are humans who have harnessed mystical energy that can be used for various effects, but how exactly these powers are gained and the full range of how they can be used remain a mystery as of now. In addition to these mystical or magical powers, Druids are typically highly-educated scholars who not only have a specific expertise that aids them in their practice (such as being a veterinarian or a psychologist), but they are also knowledgeable in a range of different topics including (but not limited to) history, foreign languages, botany, pharmacology, mythology and folklore, and anthropology, among other things. They all usually possess at least a basic level of self-defense training and close-quarters combat, due to the danger that exists as advisers to occasionally unstable shapeshifters.
The powers possessed by benevolent Druids who have not taken the darker path to becoming Darachs are largely undefined thus far in the series and are barely understood. The main power they possess seems to be the mastery of the use of Mountain Ash, allowing them to use their own willpower to manipulate the ash into the shape needed, typically in straight lines across the thresholds of doors or in perfect circles around them to protect themselves or others from supernatural threats. There are additional powers that seem to have been demonstrated by Druids, though they seem to vary based on the individual. Alan Deaton, for example, is the Druid with the most screen-time in the series, and, as such, has demonstrated the most powers, including: the ability to mysteriously escape being bound, gagged, and locked in a car trunk; the ability to prevent himself from being hit by a chair thrown at him by Peter Hale by causing it to break into pieces in midair (possibly through a form of telekinesis); and the ability to force a transformed Kali to shift back into human form after she threatened to kill Marin Morrell (possibly through a form of biokinesis).
In terms of human abilities, these also depend on the specific Druid in question and what career they have outside of their Druid or Emissary duties. This could extend to veterinary/human medical and pharmacological knowledge in Deaton's case, human psychological knowledge in Morrell's case, and literary knowledge in Jennifer's case, who was an English teacher as a day job. In general, Druids are typically extremely learned in mythology and folklore in terms of the supernatural world of which they are a part, giving them immense knowledge on the powers and weaknesses of the range of supernatural creatures, as well as mystical rituals that can achieve various effects. They also are very knowledgeable about herbs and plants, such as rowan wood/Mountain Ash, wolfsbane, mistletoe, and lichen such as letharia vulpina.
Druids also tend to speak numerous languages, possibly to aid them in learning more about the supernatural in texts that are not in English; Deaton has been shown to speak Japanese and American Sign Language to a significant degree, and Morrell is fluent in Latin and a number of Romance languages such as French, which she used to teach at the high school. In addition to these skills, the Druids introduced thus far have also had various levels of skill in close-quarters combat and the use of weaponry; both Deaton and Morrell have demonstrated the ability to defend themselves against both human and supernatural threats, and Deaton is very competent in the use of fighting with a retractable steel baton.
A Darach's powers are usually gained through sacrificial rituals , though these rituals can vary in scope and in the level of power received by performing them. In rare cases, they can also be gained through tapping into certain natural energies, such as the power of the telluric currents and/or ley lines in the earth. With these methods of gaining power in mind, the following is a list of powers that have been shown to be gained through these sacrificial rituals, though it is by no means a comprehensive list of the kind of powers a Darach can possess:
- Super Strength: Jennifer demonstrated that she possessed superhuman strength at a level that was superior to many Alpha werewolves such as the twins and Kali due to the trio of "warrior" sacrifices that she performed. However, this power was still inferior to that of Deucalion.
- Healing: Jennifer demonstrated that she possessed the ability to heal herself and others from minor to critical wounds, illnesses, and conditions due to the "healer" trio of sacrifices she committed. This power allowed her to heal her own gunshot wound after Sheriff Stilinski shot her in the thigh, heal Derek Hale's near-fatal injuries sustained after battling the Alpha Pack and falling three stories onto an escalator, as well as completely restoring Deucalion's eyesight after having been permanently blinded by Gerard Argent several years earlier. However, this power required a lot of energy and would often weaken her severely for several minutes afterward, preventing her from using her powers during this time.
- Telekinesis: Jennifer demonstrated the ability to move objects solely with her mind during a battle with Kali, Ethan, and Aiden at Derek's loft when she gestured with her hands and made and entire wall's worth of broken window glass rise in the air. She had perfect control over each of these shards of glass, and was able to make all of the individual pieces spin in the air before pointing them directly at Kali. She ultimately used this ability to forcefully shove the pieces toward Kali like bullets, where they embedded in her body from head to toe and killed her. It is unknown if this was a power afforded to Jennifer simply as a Darach, or if she gained it through her mass animal suicide ritual or one of the four trios of human sacrifice she committed.
- Knowledge and Strategy: Jennifer was said to possess the power to intuitively understand knowledge regarding strategy and other aspects of battle due to the trio of "philosophers" she sacrificed, but the power was vaguely defined and not actively used, making the full scope of the power a mystery as of yet.
- Glamouring: Jennifer possessed the ability to cast a glamour over herself so that others would see her as a beautiful and unblemished young woman rather than a scarred and mutilated victim of a Werewolf. She had perfect control over this power, and was able to switch back and forth between her true appearance and her glamoured appearance at will. Jennifer possessed this power prior to her sacrifice rituals, but it was implied that it was enhanced by her trio of "virgin" sacrifices.
- Seduction: Jennifer implied that her "virgin" trio of sacrifices also gave her the power to subtly seduce others, which was how she was able to enter a relationship with Derek Hale so quickly as well as how she was able to deceive him for so long.
- Illusion Casting: Jennifer possessed the ability to cast illusions in the minds of those she intended to sacrifice, which she typically used in order to terrify her victims, thus making them easier to kill. She demonstrated this power on several occasions, such as when she made Heather believe that the wine bottles in her basement were being shot at her and shattering on the floor, bloodying her feet in the process; when she made Emily believe that various bugs were crawling over her before she was seemingly consumed by scarab beetles; and when she made Tara Graeme believe that she was seeing her own dead body under the shower in the boy's locker room at the high school. Jennifer could also use this power to induce auditory hallucinations, such as when she made the band teacher, Adrian Harris, and Lydia Martin hear what became known as the "Darach chanting" song.
- Astral Projection: Jennifer possessed the power of astral projection, which she used to project her astral self to the Glen Capri Motel to monitor whether or not the werewolves Scott McCall, Isaac Lahey, Vernon Boyd, and Ethan would succumb to the hallucinations caused by wolfsbane poisoning and her illusion-casting abilities, as she knew they would interfere with her plans to get her revenge on the Alphas. It is unknown how Jennifer attained this power.
- Terrakinesis: Due to Jennifer's connection to the telluric currents of Beacon Hills, she was able to cause earthquakes across the town that were strong enough to collapse the root cellar under the Nemeton, hoping that, by doing so, she would kill the three "guardians" (Sheriff Stilinski, Melissa McCall, and Chris Argent) and gain the rest of her powers in the process.
- Atmokinesis: Due to Jennifer's connection to the telluric currents of Beacon Hills, she possessed the ability to control the weather to such a degree that she was able to cause powerful thunderstorms and forceful gusts of wind in addition to the earthquakes she created.
- Zoopathy: Jennifer demonstrated the power to control animals, as evidenced by the fact that she managed to force hundreds of crows commit suicide by flying into windows on at least two separate occasions. She also seemed to be able to control insects, to an extent, such as the moths she made fly into Dr. Hilyard's car and coat the exterior windows of the Beacon Hills Animal Clinic. It is also possible that it was her influence that led the deer to commit suicide by running into Lydia's moving car and/or the dozen or so cats at the animal clinic who clawed themselves to death.
Since Druids are humans, they possess the common weaknesses of their species, particularly mortality, though those who have enhanced healing powers (such as the Darach, Jennifer Blake) will have a higher resistance than regular humans. It has been shown that Mistletoe can disrupt some of their powers as well, as Jennifer's glamouring ability was temporarily neutralized after Scott McCall tossed ground-up mistletoe power at her, forcing her to reveal her true, mutilated face.
Deaton was introduced in the first season as a veterinarian who owns the animal clinic in Beacon Hills, California and who was the boss of Scott McCall, a high school student and veterinary technician. However, after Scott was bitten and turned by the Alpha Werewolf in January 2011, Deaton started to keep a close eye on his protégée, believing wholeheartedly that he had the potential to become a True Alpha. Scott became more and more confused by Deaton's behavior, especially when Deaton healed Scott of Wolfsbane poisoning he contracted from poisoned bullets shot by Argent Hunters.
By the third season, Deaton was unable to keep his secret any longer-- he is a Druid who acted as the Hale Pack's Emissary until the Hale House Fire killed nearly everyone in the family, though Talia and Laura Hale, as the Alpha and Alpha-to-be of their pack, were the only ones who knew Deaton was thei pack's Emissary. Deaton then retired from the supernatural world for nearly ten years until the benevolent supernaturals of Beacon Hills needed guidance.
Upon Scott's ascension to True Alpha status, Deaton became the newly-formed McCall Pack's Emissary, only this time, all of its members and even its allies knew that they were always welcome to seek him out at the clinic. Deaton helped Scott and his loved ones navigate the supernatural world and search for people and objects that could help them in their goal of protecting Beacon Hills from human or supernatural threats. This could mean anything from Deaton splinting a broken bone to locating a rare scroll to seeking out a special kind of lichen to use as a poison against certain beings. This can sometimes get Deaton into trouble, as he is frequently visited by malevolent Hunters looking for specific information to kill a target, not to mention that he was targeted as a healer sacrifice by the Darach and used as leverage against Malia Tate by the Desert Wolf.
Former Druid Emissary (Kali's original pack)/Darach (currently)
- Druids are the second type of human involved in the supernatural world that have been introduced into the series after Hunters.
- Both Deaton and Morrell have pendants of the Horned God known as Cernunnos, or, less commonly, Herne the Hunter, suggesting that the deity may have a connection to Druids in general in the Teen Wolf series. In Celtic polytheistic mythology and folklore, Cernunnos is the god of animals, fertility, hunting, life, nature, and the underworld, among other associations, making him a fitting patron for a community of people who act as guides to animalistic shapeshifters and who maintain the balance of nature.
- The Druids can be considered as the Teen Wolf version of witches.