- "That which is sacrosanct I shall preserve... That which is sublime I will protect... That which threatens, I will destroy... For my holy wrath will know no bounds! "
- —The Vow of the Grail Knight[1a]
The Grail Knights are the ultimate Human warrior, a Knight who is the total embodiment of chivalry and justice, and the holy guardians of the mystical Goddess, the Lady of the Lake. Amongst the best Knights in all the lands of the Old World, these holy warriors are a figure that all Kings of Bretonnia are required to become should he wish to rule his Kingdom. To become a Grail Knight you must prove yourself worthy by enacting magnificent deeds and drink from a holy chalice that is blessed by the Lady of the Lake. To do this, a Knight of the Realm must take on a Grail Quest and thus become a Questing Knight. Questing Knights travel the world, much like the Knights Errant, to ferret out injustice and defeat enemies to gain the Lady's attention. Only when a Questing Knight has proved his valor and purity beyond all doubt does the Lady of the Lake appear to him in a vision, rewarding him not only with the sight of the Grail, but also permitting him to drink from it.[1b]
Very few are allowed to drink from the Grail, the holiest of Bretonnian artifacts, and only those knights of unblemished purity survive a taste of the blessed waters from the chalice. Those who drink from the mystical chalice are changed forever, granted lifespans many times that of normal men, as well as other, more stranger gifts. Their dedication to the ideals of chivalry becomes absolute, and most shine with a Fay light. This light fades over a few days after the knight drinks from the grail, but it may brighten once more when he is fighting particularly bravely for the Lady of the Lake. From that moment on the knight is irrevocably committed to the service of the Lady and the Grail, a bond that can only be broken by death.[1b]
Each Grail Knight takes over the duties of guarding the holy places of the Lady. These are often simple places an abandoned chapel, a lake, or a woodland grove but all are sacred to the Grail Knights. Should a corrupted creature set foot within one of these places they will face the righthous fury of its defender, for the Grail Knight will never flee from his defence of the Lady's land. A Grail Knight will only leave his sanctum in dire need, throwing out the luxuries of a noble life for a lifetime of service. Although some dukes will formally renounce their titles upon completing their quest, to better protect the sacred places, many often decide that they can best guard these places by defending the whole land and so retain their title and other responsibilities.[1b]
When such a knight journeys through a village or town, desperate crowds will surround him as the common people fight to touch the champion of the Lady and thus share in her blessing. Grail Knights command respect and awe from all listeners, lowly peasants and mighty dukes alike. It is indeed a bold or foolhardy individual who will speak against a Grail Knight, for their wrath is fearsome and terrible, and their words are those of the Lady. Even within the most remote and isolated village in the realm the people tell the tales of these paragons of earthly virtue, and of their glorious deeds in the Lady's name. To the commoners of Bretonnia, Grail Knights form a pantheon of living deities, their names spoken as a reverent mantra throughout the land, and are often worshipped in their own right. They are tireless, and know neither fear, hardship nor despair, their words and deeds immortalised forever. They are no longer mere mortal warriors - they are living saints, stalwart and dire champions in the face of dire evil.[1b]