This rite marks the autumnal equinox, when the season of long days gives way to the season of long nights. Although summer is the traditional season of war among many human cultures, the Garou know that their shadow war will be all the more difficult during the lengthening hours of darkness. To prepare themselves, they hold the Long Vigil, a rite designed to sharpen their appetite for the battles ahead.
The Long Vigil begins at sundown, around a raging bonfire (save in some urban caerns). The sept spends the day before the Vigil bedecking the caern with trophies of war collected during the previous year. From bent rifles and shredded flak jackets to broken Wyrm-fetishes and strings of teeth to the skulls of Wyrmish monsters to smeared blood mixed with the dust of vampires, all manner of mementos adorn the heart of the caern. As the sun slips below the horizon, the ritemaster begins to chant praise to Helios, thanking him for his blessings during the summer, and praying for his safety in the coming winter. The ritemaster then praises Luna and beseeches her aid in the long nights to come.
To aid in the ritemaster's plea for aid, the Galliards of the sept come forward and begin to recite tales of the most glorious battles of the last year and the deeds done in her name. They point to each trophy in turn to tell the story of how it was won from its owner. Particularly eloquent members of other auspices who distinguished themselves in the previous year are sometimes allowed the honor of being the first to tell their own tales. Once the Galliards have finished, the other members of the sept begin to recount their own versions of the great deeds of the previous year. The tale-telling lasts all night; as dawn approaches, the ritemaster invokes Luna one final time. He dedicates all the deeds of the previous year to Luna, her brother Helios and her sister Gaia, and he promises that the year to come will be just as glorious with Luna's blessing. As the rite concludes, the Garou hurl as many trophies as possible into the bonfire, destroying their hard-earned mementos as a sign of faith that they will take many more in the year to come.