- "Mighty indeed was the last and most epic battles and each Companion performed such deeds as to fill the sagas of wordsmiths and scribes until the end of time. The moons raced across the darkened sky replaced by the burning orb of the sun, but to no respite. Only the lady knows the number of weeks that saw battle, but against all odds, the Companions emerged victories. The piles of dead were stacked like unto mountains, and searing pyres burnt the slain enemy such that night was turned to day for a season and more. Thus was the Twelfth and final Great Battle won."
- —Account of the Rise of the Bretonni and Lord Gilles le Breton, by Adelrond of Couronne
The Grail Companions were the first of the Grail Knights and the loyal companion of Gilles le Breton when he founded the Kingdom of Bretonnia. Blessed by the Lady, these Grail Companions were each a Dukes of every Bretonni Dukedom, all of whom were ultimately found worthy by the Lady to aid Gilles in his quest of unification.
These Companions were amongst the greatest warriors of their age, Knights that truly embody the warrior tradition of the anceint Bretonni. The blessing by the Lady gave these Knights a halo of light, and fought with such ferocity and courage that would make them seem inhuman. Nevertheless, these 13 Grail Companions would forever be immortalized by the people of Bretonnia for years to come.
The Twelve Great BattlesEdit
The morning after his encounter with the Lady of the Lake and his first grand victory over the Greenskins, Duke Gilles of Bastonne led his army against the Orcs besieging the Dukedom of Bordeleaux. The three Grail Companions did as much slaughter as the rest of their army combined, and the Greenskin hordes were driven into the ocean. Seeing a means to retake their lands from the Greenskins, Lord Marcus d'Bordeleaux and Lord Fredemund d'Aquaitaine eagerly joined Gilles and his ever-growing army of Knights. After the victory feast, the Lady of the Lake appeared in the private chamber where the Lords were gathered, where she bestowed Marcus and Fredemund the Holy Grail and thus become the fourth and fifth Grail Companion. Marcus turned that chamber within his castle into the first Grail Chapel, a site still of unparalleled sanctity today. As the Companions rode south to the Dukedom of Brionne, they found their way blocked by the army of a bloated Orc by the name of Warlord Brogtar.
Lord Fredemund summoned a great flock of Falcons, which struck the flying beasts of the Orcis armies from the sky. With the flying beast slain, the Grail Companions sounded the charge and fought their way deep into the heart of the enemy army, where Lord Landuin struck the Warlord down with his own sword. With victory achieved, the Companions hurried their armies towards the besieged capital of Brionne. Once they reached their destination, they found the castle under-siege by a horde of Greenskin warriors. The Knights drove through the unsuspecting besiegers from the rear-flank, shattering their resolve and breaking the siege. Lord Balduin d'Brionne sallied forth with his Knights and met Gilles in the midst of the Orcish army. As they clasped forearms as brothers, the Lady of the Lake appeared and gave Balduin a drink from the Holy Grail, thus becoming the sixth Grail Companion. Although the Knights were outnumbered three-hundred to one, the Grail Companions were able to still drive them from the battlefield. Urged on by the vision of the Lady, the army crossed the River Rienne and rode east through the ravaged Dukedom of Carcassonne, towards the besieged Dukedom of Quenelles. As they rode, Lord Lambard d'Carcasonne rallied to their banner and entered Quenelles. Upon their arrival, they found that the Forest of Loren was in flames, assaulted by another army of Orcish warriors. Some of the Knights were afraid to venture towards the burning forest, for fear of the dreaded Fay Enchantress that has made the Forest her home. Unafraid, Gilles urged them on, and upon entering the Forest, the Knights were attacked by the Orcs.
In the heat of battle, the Fay Enchantress appeared from the shadows and lent her aid towards the Knights, with the very trees of the Forest rising up to meet the Greenskin invaders. As the battle raged on, the Knights were met with the army of Rademund the Pure, Lord of Quenelles, and with the last Orc slain, the Lady blessed both Rademund and Lambard for their bravery, thus becoming the seventh and eighth Grail Companion. Riding north to the Dukedom of Parravon, the Grail Companions found it's beautiful capital lying in ruins. Rampaging Giants rained down boulders upon the city walls from the mountains above, whilst a horde of Goblins from the Severed Head Tribe looted the city streets. Lord Agilgar d'Parravon, mounted upon Glorfinial, his faithful Pegasus, took to the skies and aided Gilles in retaking the city. Heading further north-west, the Companions alongside Lord Agilgar, came to the aid of the Dukedom of Montfort. Besieged and surronded, Gilles order the charge against the Greenskin invaders, but was struck low by a ballista bolt from one of the Greenskin war-machines.
His companions rallied about him and fought their way towards the city, where they were met by Lord Martrud d'Montfort. As Lord Agilgar and Martrud watched over the body of Gilles, the Lady of the Lake appeared before them and healed Gilles of his injuries. For their dedication to Gilles, the Lady blessed Lord Agilgar and Martrud in becoming the ninth and tenth Grail Companion. Arising from his sick bed, Gilles led that charge that broke the Greenskin army. With the Greenskins retreating, Gilles ordered a counter-attack and plunged deep into the cavernous homes of the Goblin Kings. Illuminated by the holy light of the Grail Companions, the Lords of the Britonni slaughtered the Goblin Kings and broke the unity that held their fractious tribes together. With their purpose achieved, they fought their way back to the surface covered with the black blood of their enemies. Now with ten of the Bretonni Lords following his banner, Gilles turned west to face the Greenskins despoiling the Duke of Gisoreux. Joining forces with Duke Beren d'Gisoreux, GIlles faced a horde containing many of the Orc's most deadliest Shamans, who turned their foul magic upon the Bretonni.
Protected by the blessings of the Lady, the Knights and the Grail Companions charged unharmed through the magical maelstrom and struck the enemy horde with great force, breaking their resolve. The army continued west into the Duchy of Mousillon, once the most beautiful and fairest lands of the Bretonni people. Now wasted and burning, the Knights walked through the wasteland and met Duke Folgar d'Artios within the city of Mousillon. Duke Folgar told the Knights that an army of Beastmen and Undead warriors march upon the city within a matter of hours, and so the Knights took to the city's defences and stood resolute. The Grail Companions each took out a Dark Champion of the army, with the battle ending when Duke Landuin struck down the sorceror who is controlling the Undead warriors, destroying nearly half the enemy army, forcing the Beastmen to retreat.
The Grail Companions perused the fleeing beastmen army, and when Duke Beren and Duke Folgar returned, they shined with the light of the Lady, becoming now the eleventh and twelfth Grail Companion. The victorious Lords turned north, riding through the Forest of Arden until they reached the besieged port-city of L'Anguille. There, they found the great city under-siege by an army of Norsemen Marauders and Chaos Warriors, attacking from both land and sea. Duke Corduin of L'Anguille cut a path through the besiegers and met up with Duke Gilles. At lenght, Lord Marcus of Bordeleaux challenged the leader of the Norse, Svengar of the Skaelings, to single combat, with the conditions that the loser's forces would withdraw. Too proud to refuse, the giant warrior met Marcus upon a lighthouse tower and fought until the next day.
As dawn broke, Lord Marcus found renewed strenght and struck down the Norse Cheiftan. A savage but honorable race of warriors, the Norse kept to their words and returned to their ships and sailed home. After but a nights rest, the Grail Companions rode eastward where they met up with Duke Caerleond d'Couronne. There the Duke joined the armies of Gilles and fought an Orc horde at the River Sannez. With the aid of the combined armies, the Knights drove the Greenskins back, defeated them, and turned the waters of the river black with blood. With victory achieved, the Knights rode with all haste to the city of Couronne. Gathering within Couronne, the Knights heard news of a massive host of Beastmen, Trolls, and nameless creatures of Chaos pouring from the Forest of Arden. As they prepared for the final battle, messengers brought word of an army of Greenskins warriors, the largest they have ever seen, pouring out of the mountainous region known as the Pale Sisters.
Worst yet, when the Knights assembled outside the walls of the city, an army of Skavens rose up from the sewer networks and pillage the city streets. As the Lords took counsel before the fight, the Lady of hte Lake joined their numbers. There she had Lord Corduin and Caerleond drink from the Holy, thus being the last and final thirteenth and fourtheth member of the Grail Companions. Then she blessed the whole army and bade them fight in her name. With a ferocity not seen by their people for centuries, the Knights of all the Bretonni people fought the three armies that assails them. The battle raged for weeks upon weeks, as foul creatures continued to pour from their lairs like a stormy tide and break upon the armies of the Bretonni as against a cliff. When at last the sounds of battle fell silent, the plains of Couronne were awashed with the bodies of the slain. This was the greatest victory ever achieved by the Bretonni people, and the battle had finally signaled the end to the fighting, and the birth of a new kingdom.
- Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay: Knights of the Grail (2nd Edition) -- pg. 15
- Warhammer Armies: Bretonnia (6th Edition) -- pg. 6 - 12
- Knights of Bretonnia (Novel) by Anthony Reynoldsingship.