- "Duke Adalhard deflected an overhead blow with his shield and slashed open his attacker’s throat. Blood fountained from the fatal wound, and Adalhard stepped back, his blade flashing down to deflect a spear that was stabbing towards his groin, and with a roll of his wrist he struck upwards, the tip of his sword crunching up into the chin of another Norscan, shattering bone and teeth."
- —Adalhard during the Siege of Lyonesse.
Duke Adalhard appears to be a simple man. He excels on the battlefield and, whilst off it, enjoys feasting, gambling, and the other entertainments of warriors. Some observers of his style have suggested that his true loyalty is to Ulric, not the Lady of the Lake, and blame it on the Norscan blood found in northern Lyonesse.[1a]
The Duke keeps himself aloof from the politics of his dukedom as far as possible. If conflict spreads to the point that he can’t ignore it, he typically takes his forces in, crushes all parties, seizes their lands, and declares a resolution. This has been effective every time he has done it, so the nobility now try to keep their scheming from drawing the attention of their lord.[1a]
In battle, the Duke is instantly recognisable. He is a tall warrior, clad in gleaming, golden armour and wielding a mighty ancestral longsword, elven runes glowing along the length of its blade. He wears a fine tabard bearing the heraldry of Lyonesse and a cloak made from the pelt of a Lion swept over one shoulder. The aura of authority around Adalhard is palpable; It’s clear that he is a man who is used to being instantly obeyed, and yet it is obvious that he remains a warrior first and foremost.
Adalhard was one of the Dukes who sided with Mallobaude during the Bretonnian Civil War. Despite his choice to side against the crown, the Duke was granted clemency upon the conclusion of the conflict and Mallobaude’s defeat. When the Undead hordes of Heinrich Kemmler and Arkhan the Black marched upon La Maisontaal Abbey, Adalhard sent forth his Son, Aldrad and a force of Knights Errant to aid in its defence.
The Heraldry of Lyonesse was originally adopted by Thierulf, the most devoted of Gilles le Breton’s Grail Companions. In the years before the Great Battles, Thierulf of Lyonesse married Gilles’ sister and became his brother-in-law’s most trusted friend. He would later be one of the two Companions blessed by the Lady alongside Gilles himself, going on to fight victoriously in all twelve of the Great Battles with him. Lyonesse's Lion-symbol represents Thierhulf’s courageous nature in battle, and also the beast that he and his brother are said to have miraculously slain as children.
- 1: Warhammer Fantasy RPG 2nd ED -- Knights of the Grail
- 1a: pg. 76
- 2: Knight of the Realm (Novel)
- 3: The End Times: Nagash
- 4: Total War: Warhammer (Videogame)