Few in the Barony speculate on who the Cannibal Knight actually is. Most just assume he is a ghoul of unusual cunning and strength who rose to the top by natural selection. The truth is a darker and more tragic story, but it is one that perhaps might one day be uncovered. The creature now known as the Cannibal Knight was once Baron Jules de Fontainebleau, a Knight of the Realm whose take on the Knightly Code was that a knight had the right to rule over lesser men for their own good and that he should be obeyed in all things. A fine warrior and a stern taskmaster, he was a natural choice when King Charlen selected the knights who would lead a host of Knights Errant into the renewed Errantry Wars. These wars had been going on for more than a generation and had begun when the Knights of the Border Princes far to the southeast of Bretonnia had requested help from the king in ridding their lands of Orcs and Goblins. In 1480 (2458 IC), Baron Jules and many more Knights Errant arrived in the lands of the Border Princes, and he proved an implacable foe of the Greenskin, famed for his discipline and exacting demands of obedience. Knights Errant under his command sent countless Greenskins to a well-deserved death, and Baron Jules proved himself an able warrior.
In 1488 (2466), the Greenskins in apparent general retreat, Baron Jules decided to pursue an Orc warband far into the wilderness to the south of the Border Princes' keeps. He hoped to slay many Orcs on the very doorstep of many Orc tribes, thus striking fear into the heart of every Greenskin! But Baron Jules' mistake was to assume that the Orcs were just rampaging animals with no grasp of strategy or tactics. As he pursued the Greenskins, a mighty host of Orcs and Goblins appeared in the rugged lands around them utterly surrounding Jules and his host of Knights Errant. Several Orc tribes had united to punish the Bretonnians, and Jules was trapped in the jaws of their ambush.
Very few ever returned to Bretonnia to tell of what followed, but Jules lived through it all. His Knights were trapped, fighting back to back against wave after wave of frothing mad Orcs and endless flights of Goblin arrows. Almost every single Knight Errant died, and after three days and three nights of murderous combat, the Orcs were dancing over great heaps of Bretonnian dead. But Jules did not die. Trapped in a mound of the dead, it took weeks before the bodies decayed enough for him to force his way out. Even he does not quite know how he lived that long, but he spent long periods of it haunted by delusions, and it is perhaps here that his taste for Human flesh was first realised. In any case, when Jules finally escaped, he was little more than a raving madman, remembering just enough to make his way alone and on foot towards Bretonnia. Gradually his lucidity returned, and he imagined himself returning a hero, the only survivor of a gallant but tragic defeat. What he found was far different.
When he reached the Keep he had called home, he was greeted with open-mouthed horror. His wife fainted away with shock and his faithful retainers barred the doors against him. For Jules had become a monster. His face was sunken and sallow, his teeth like fangs. His hands were gory claws, and the stench of death followed him everywhere. Muscle and gut showed through rents in his skin. He was a horrendous thing, and he was chased from his own lands by commoners wielding brands and pitchforks, led by the members of his own household. Jules was incensed. He was a Knight of Bretonnia, and he deserved the power that had been torn from him. He sought out a land where he could build power again, caring nothing for the Knightly Code and only for dominion over men. He came to Mousillon and saw there a place where a strong and ruthless man, monster or not, could win the power that was his due. And beneath the city streets, he found a land amid the darkness and stench that was his to command. The creeping predators of the Lost City saw in him a ruler and kindred spirit, and so the Barony was born.
The Cannibal Knight desires power. He has become evil and corrupt, and he despises the living as worthy only to obey him. Mallobaude has recently contacted the Cannibal Knight and offered to give him the city to rule in return for assisting the Black Knight’s forces in taking over Mousillon and defending it against the inevitable attack by the king. The Cannibal Knight is considering this offer and will probably accept it in the hope that the whole of the city, and then the whole of Mousillon, will become a land of monsters where the Cannibal Knight is king.
The Court of the Cannibal Knight
The Cannibal Knight’s court fills one entire sewer section, an enormous t-junction that looks more like the nave of a vast church than a sewer. Four huge, fluted columns support the roof in the centre, and between these columns is a small pyramid of steps atop which is the Cannibal Knight's throne, made of bones, skulls and trophy weapons, all taken from intruders who strayed into the Barony. The banners of the dukes hang everywhere, for each of the Barony's mock aristocrats wants to hang their colours close to their king, and there are many treasures taken from Mousillon's Lost Town displayed here, from antique furniture to fine tapestries turned murky with damp. Around the throne, the Cannibal Knight has gathered the trappings of a monarch, from fawning courtiers to jesters and bards. Ghouls dressed in heralds' tunics play horrible atonal notes on pilfered trumpets to announce the arrival of guests to the court. Court scribes scribble gibberish in large mouldering tomes looted from the Lost Town. The court is always busy, for the Cannibal Knight never sleeps, and the Ghouls of the Barony are by turns fawning and ambitious in gaining the favour of their lord.
The Cannibal Knight himself is an awesome sight. Tall and nobly proportioned, the Knight was once a strong and handsome man. Now his face is a cadaverous horror, constantly seething with maggots and flies. Only his piercing blue eyes are intact, and they suggest an intelligence that has survived the physical degeneration of becoming a Ghoul. The Knight's armour is perhaps the finest artefact in the Barony. It is a full set of bespoke plate armour, wonderfully engraved with fleur-de-lis and other heraldic designs, chased in gold and with the Knight's own heraldry of a white sun on a red sky emblazoned in bright lacquer on the chest. The Knight's helm, topped with a sun design wrought in white-gold, sits at his feet. His sword is usually propped up against his throne beside him, a huge two-hander as finely made as his armour.