Bretonnian Hinterlands
Monday, 06 September 2010

This collection of articles is about an army which comes from a small region in Bretonnia. This has been my fluff for the last 8 years. The idea is to describe it and write about its adventures. This first entry tells of the land itself, about the heroes of the land, and about the regiments of the army. In latter entries, I will describe their adventures.

Amongst the vast mountains and green forests of the land of Bretonnia, amongst its castles, towers, hamlets and coves, lies a region, which although small, is everything but ordinary. On the very border, where the dukedoms of Monfort and Giseroux, and The Empire touch, do the Bretonnian Hinterlands find their spot. A hill covered region surrounded by high mountain tops, and nearly isolated from the rest of the world, bears always a deep green glow from its abundant temperate flora. It is as if the landscape was a cunningly woven mantle, where the green grass serves as fabric, woods as wool details and the castles and modest hamlets as emblems, knitted on it.

There is only one road to this emerald maze, which is practicly situated in the lap of the Grey mountains. This road, called Hinterland path, swirls through the Grey mountains and starts to descend at the Mountain Pass of Laz. Here lies a great, stone rectangular watchtower, and everything behind it, is the Bretonnian Hinterlands.

For as long as the Annals of history can recall, the knights and folk of the Hinterlands, have served the monarchs of Bretonnia, as fierce and loyal borderguard. This feat of courage has earned them the title of the "strongest shield and the bulwark of Bretonnia". The nature of their secluded position resulted in the custom that this region is led by autonomous leaders which bore great charisma amongst their peers and common folk alike. This was never a matter of law, but rather of fact, because neither the influence of the Duke of Giseroux nor Montfort stretched so far. Whenever the Bretonnian king or his dukes went to war, several regiments from the Hinterlands would appear, either on the battlefield, or just silently by joining the army on the march. The knights of the Hinterland Realm bore similar heraldry to that of Giseroux, a watchtower, but the colors were different: yellow and black.

Such was the tradition until, eleven years ago, a young knight arose from the ranks of the Hinterlands Errant knights. He fought under the duke of L'Anguille, and earned his domain through feat of combat, fighting a dozen battles against the Dark elf raiders. As a knight he ascended soon to be a paladin in the service of the Duke of Giseroux, his Battle standard bearer. When the old duke passed away without an heir, this knight became the new duke, bearing the name Duke Mislav I. of Giseroux. He served the king as a duke for three years, but he did not forget where he came from, and he often made journeys to the Hinterlands, claiming them by right of seizn (possession) for Giseroux. And the Hinterlanders accepted this, joining his army with unseen ardour. However when the duke felt the urge to serve the Lady of the Lake, he gave up his position and set off on the Quest. He returned to the Hinterlands a Grail knight.

The common folk as well as knights rallied around a new found leader who now took his place at the fort called Grand Encampment which overlooked his old domain. In time, the dukes of Bretonnia forgot this isolated region again. But something changed, and no one was aware what was stirring behind the snowy mountain tops, the ramparts which surrounded this region. They would soon find out.

One summer, about five years ago, a chaos war band, who pledged allegiance to the Blood God, smashed through Marrienburg territory and took an unusual turn to the east, going for the pass between the Grey Mountains and the Pale Sisters, threatening Bretonnia. The dukes were unaware of  this invasion. Just as the horde was about to enter this pass, a whole army, a Bretonnian army descended from the mountains and presented itself on the battlefield. It was the army of Sir Mislav, and the Hinterlands. This was no peasant rabble nor was it few regiments drawn together by necessity. It was a fully organized, and fully equipped army. An army which alone stood at the bastion of Bretonnia. History would however triumph over fairytale that day, because the newly formed Hinterlands army did not win the day. But it certainly made any invasion impossible.

This was a start of a new era, an era where any attacker from the North was met on the field by the Hinterlanders. And that was not the end of it, because this army, fought for the interests of the Bretonnian king wherever they arose, from the cold plains of the Ogres to the moist jungles of Lustria. This army grew to be a formidable and renown opponent throughout the Old and New World alike.

After four years of bloody service, the Bretonnian king decided to reward this fidelity by giving the Hinterlands leader, sir Mislav, the title of his immediate vassal, making him loyal directly to him, and making the Hinterlandsas independent as it could be. The other side of the agreement was that Mislav and the Hinterlanders pledged to defend Bretonnian northern border from this day to the end. And so they have been doing since.

The Bretonnian Hinterlands has only a two big castles and seven villages. The castles are: The Grand Encampment, situated on the far north, beneath the Grey Mountainstops, and the other is Dragons Cliff, situated in the very middle of the region. The villages are small. The biggest one is Eagles home, which lies beneth the Dragons cliff castle. The village in the furthest north is Littlepass, known for its craftsmanship.The remaining villages are Lesser Well, Barbican, Backendorm, Grand Market and Follengard. The region even has a monastery- Lady's Stream, where war bands of battle pilgrims reside. Apart from this, the region is interwoven with small keeps, in which the knights of this realm live.

The leader of this region, Sir Mislav, whose title is Ban Mislav, signifying how he is below a duke, but still responsible only to the king himself, resides in the Dragons Cliff castle. His history as a knight was described earlier. He is a Grail knight, and rides with them to battle in most occasions. His coat of arms is a quarterly with sinister chief sable with argent tower, dexter chief argent,sinister base argent and dexter base sable with argent tower (i.e. shield split in four parts with the upper left and the lower right being black and containing a white tower, and the upper right and lower left being white).

The second lord of the realm is his wife, who is a prophetess of the lady. She doesnot go to battle often, and mostly replaces Sir Mislav while the army is away on a campaign. She does however hire a lot of acolyte damsels who she trains, and sends off to war and practice with the Hinterlands army.

TheBattle standardbearer of the region is Sir Sead ibn Ismet, originally from Araby, but knightedas a Bretonnian knight, and the oldest friend of Sir Mislav. He is the onlymember of the army who has fought in all the same battles as its general.

There are two paladins in the Hinterlands. Joseph of Brionne, and Marian the Crazed. Joseph is also an old friend of the lord of the land, but he has just recently joined the Hinterlanders. He is known to be flamboyant and even arrogant at times, but still a formidable warrior. Marian is actually the father of Sir Mislav, and he is a questing knight. He is also the leader of a peculiar band of  questing knights, consisting solely of old knights of the realm who never went on The Quest. Sir Marian is known to be rash in battle.

There are currently three Damsels being trained by the lady of the realm: Anna of Carcassonne, who is a young wizard from the south; Johanna, who is actually a friend of her tutor, and Maya, a haughty young wizard who just arrived.

The Hinterlanders have no Pegasus knight regiments, because only two Pegasus roam their country side: Baiard and Roscelin. Sir Mislav's Hippogryph Sakripant, keeps them company in the air.

Every village  here provides a particular part of the army. All the trebuchets come from Little Pass, and all the Men at armscome from Lesser Stubica where the armories are, and the recruitment is done.The archers come from Backendorm, and the yeomen cavalry and skirmish bowmenfrom Grand Market. All the commoners have green and brown uniforms, The brown color represents the fact that they are not nobles.

All the knights of the realm gather it to two battle groups: The company of the lesser Eagle, and The company of the greater Eagle, based upon whether their domain lies north (greater), or south (lesser) of the Eagles home village, which serves as a centre point. When going into battle the Knights of the realm wear black and yellow tunics. The black represents their knighthood, and the yellow their domain.

The Knights Errant chapter house, where the young knights gather when their time comes, is in a keep near Follengard. They wear green and black tunics. The black is the sign of knighthood, and the green stands for lack of experience.

The Questing knights, as mentioned before, in the Hinterlands, are old knights who never took up the Quest. They gather in a regiment if they hear of a campaign, during their questing. The wear black and blue tunics. Black again signifying knighthood and blue as a sign of the Quest.

There are ten grail knights in the region, with Sir Mislav being the eleventh. They reside in forests, grail chapels or by calm lakes. They take up arms when the war horn is sounded. They wear red and black tunics.

The last fragment of this army are the pilgrims, gathered around Atanasius, their leader, residing in the Lady's Stream abby. They carry to battle the deathbed of Sir Michael, the grandfather of sir Mislav, and the first Hinterlander grail knight.

This is the land, the heroes, and the army of the Bretonnian Hinterlands, a small, secluded region deep in the Grey mountains. What follows now are their tales andadventures.



Last Updated ( Wednesday, 15 September 2010 )