Genevieve Sandrine du Pointe du Lac Dieudonné
A character of a series of books written in the ye olde days of WHFB, by Jack Yeovil, more widely known as the film critic/horror buff Kim Newman. A very old (older than most adult elves) Wuxia, French, Kung Fu, clairvoyant, magical, master barmaid, vampiress who is apparently described as being blonde and green-eyed despite every drawing of her showing her as having dark hair. I swear I'm not making this shit up.
A long time ago, in Parravon there lived a young Bretonnian (French) girl who lived in luxury along with the rest of her family. This was due to her father who was a servant to the local knightly lord. Then a big meanie invaded, killing fuckloads of people and executing all the nobles while plundering the province. Poor little Genevieve's parents were killed and she and her sisters were forced to live under the care of their uncle in the mostly depopulated dukedom until at the age of 16 when a vampire named Chandagnac found her and made her one of his wives. Chandagnac himself was a servant to Lady Melissa d'Acques, a very prestigious cougar of the Lahmian Bloodline who despite having the body of a young girl of 12 was actually over 1,100 years old.
Unfortunately for Chandagnac, he was far too dim-witted and eccentric to stay hidden, and sometime after transforming Genevieve with the Dark kiss he was hunted down by priests of Ulric who staked him and then sawed off his head with a silver plated scimitar. Genevieve's sisters meanwhile would end up growing old and dying as unlike her they had remained mortal. Left with nobody from her human family in the world and with a severe bloodlust and superhuman powers, Genevieve went east.
She spent some time in Araby (the Middle East), and it was not a pleasant experience as part of it was spent as a slave. Eventually, she got her freedom and proceeded through the Warhammer Silk Road and ended up in Cathay, AKA Warhammer China. She became a trader between Cathay and Nippon (Japan) for a hundred years or so, making her one of the few beings to have ever been to Nippon.
Roughly around this time or maybe a little afterward, she met a master monk named Master Po (showing GW being creative as always). She ends up spending thirty years with him learning to control her bloodlust to the point she required very little to survive as well as learning quite a bit more about the culture of Cathay and those it had met in exchange for telling her own stories to him. He also tried to impart some of his mystic wisdom to her but, by her own admission, she was not very good at throwing around magic and so after teaching her just the basics of it Master Po ended up switching gears and teaching her martial arts. Eventually, Master Po went on to teach important Cathayan generals, but that's not important at all since GW has never bothered making Cathay relevant. Centuries would pass after this and during this time Genevieve would continue to travel and find herself working along the way in a variety of roles "...a child of court, a whore, a queen (of what nation is unknown), a soldier (in what army she doesn't say), a musician, a physician, a priestess (though to what diety is never said) an agitator, a gambler, a landowner, a penniless derelict, a herbalist, an outlaw, a bodyguard, a pit fighter, a student, a smuggler, a trapper, an alchemist and a slave". When and how she got enslaved AGAIN is a mystery but it appears to have been in the Dark Lands by her account so it probably involved the Chaos Dwarfs. Despite this little hiccup, her travels were far less difficult then they might have been thanks to the fact that with the exception of a few awkward things like not casting a reflection Gené could easily pass as a human as she was not fatally vulnerable to many of the usual vampire weaknesses like sunlight, running water, garlic, and holy symbols (though fire still hurt, she hated being out in the daytime without sunglasses and silver could still kill her). Additionally and unknown even to her she was also being aided by the Lahmian Sisterhood who secretly protected her throughout many of her adventures, as they valued her ability to influence the minds of mortals into softening towards Vampires, thus making them all the more pliant and willing slaves when Neferata came to make them hers. Thanks to this help Genevieve found herself left her with a great deal of time in between adventures which she took as an opportunity to write down an account of her travels in the biographical play "A Life".
In any event, after going throughout much of the known world Genevieve finally found herself in The Empire where she came out of the closet as a vampire. Somehow this was acceptable in her case (Newman was fairly loose with canon, although at this stage of Warhammer's life the canon was pretty loose to begin with), and she mingled in high society until she became bored and frustrated with the pompous nobility (Magnus the Pious, one of the greatest Emperors of the Empire, putting his hand up her dress probably contributed). After that incident, she slipped into the lower classes of society and ended up working as a barmaid in Altdorf in a bar called the Crescent Moon for several decades, taking a break only to travel to Kislev at some point to visit the vampire Tsarina Kattarin since they were both of the same vampire lineage and Genevieve wanted to get to know her. Genevieve would regret this decision though, as she quickly learned firsthand why Lady Melissa had advised against Kattarin being turned into a vampire in the first place, and why Kattarin was known as “Kattarin the Bloody”. Unlike Genevieve, Kattarin was a total monster who had overthrown her husband and liked to bathe in the blood of her courtiers' children and this combined with her rampant cruelty even to her own mortal relatives disturbed the Bretonnian lady so much she quickly abandoned her sister in darkness to her own devices. As Gené later found out she left at the perfect time as not only did Kattarin’s cruelty lead to her downfall shortly afterward thanks to Tsarevich Pavel seeking revenge for when he got an arm chopped off, Kattarin’s slaying led to the foundation of a Kislevite Vampire hunting society in Pavel’s name.
Eventually, during the sixth century of her life, Genevieve was found by the teenage Grand Prince Oswald von Konigswald the son of the Elector Count of Ostland who paid her to join him and his crew in their quest to kill the immortal enchanter Drachenfels, something she was more than willing to do given what he had done to her family and homeland. After losing a few friends along the way and fighting past all the greenskins/Daemons/Undead allied to the big baddy she, Oswald, and the Dwarf Menesh reached Drach's throne room finding it filled with neat stuff like a caged harpy, tons of riches, and shrines mockingly raised to the Chaos Gods and the Elven murder god Khaine. While they were distracted by the shiny stuff Drach appeared and proceeded to torment Genevieve by showing her the tortured soul of her father which he had kept magically imprisoned. Drach then proceeded to tear Menesh's arm off (he survived though) before sicking a whole crapload of evil spirits on Genevieve. The attack knocked her unconscious and thus Oswald was forced to fight and apparently kill Drach alone using one of the great Enchanter's own trophies, an ancient sword that had Sigmar's dried blood on it.
After their victory, Genevieve tried to take up traveling again, but after an incident where she and a mercenary stopped a Cathayan devotee of Tzeentch named Dien Ch'ing and his superiors from carrying out a plot to corrupt a moral crusade and overthrow the Empire of Man Genevieve decided she needed a break from being a hero and retired to a sanctuary for vampires called "the Convent of the Order of Eternal Night and Solace" for the next quarter-century.
Decades later, Oswald invited her along with their surviving battle buddies and the highest nobility of the time to a play about his defeat of Drachenfels to be held at the Great Enchanter's Castle no less. There she met Karl Franz, whom she took a liking to, and the actress playing her, whom she very much hated. She also found herself attracted to the play's director and main actor Detlef Sierck who had been hired on by Oswald in exchange for Oswald wiping out Detlef's massive debt from an earlier botched production he had been unable to finish. It wasn't till years later that she would realize that part of the reason for her attraction to him was that she had inadvertently met a child aged version of Detlef years prior during that whole mess with the moral crusade and subconsciously recognized him.
Sadly the two new lovers couldn't fully enjoy their time together, as the whole production of the play would prove to be difficult due to it being plagued with disturbing and creepy happenings including the deaths and mutilation of all of Genevieve’s living friends (excluding Oswald who had been traveling with the Emperor up to this point). Things got so bad that Genevieve was forced to replace the actress meant to play her on stage just an hour before curtain rise after the latter was scared off. This, as it happens, would prove to be Genevieve’s one and only role ever as an actress on stage.
Ultimately, it turned out the actress meant to play her might have had the right idea running as during the play’s final act the whole thing was revealed to be an elaborate trap. Years earlier Drachenfels, knowing his latest physical body was decaying had struck a deal with Oswald where he agreed to spare the whimpering teen in exchange for him serving him. Oswald had agreed and Drach had faked his own destruction making Oswald a hero and allowing him to lure all the major players in the Empire to the Enchanter's castle where Drach intended to resurrect and kill off all the leadership in the Empire. The sole exception to this murder-fest would be Oswald who would serve as Drachenfels’ puppet ruler of the Empire. Once all the players were in place Drach began to resurrect in a body Frankensteined out of a combination of the body of the actor playing him (who was in on the whole mess as well) and body parts from Genevieve's friends. A now semi-revived Drach then personally murdered some folks observing things before attacking Genevieve. He intended to drain her blood to finish reviving himself but made the mistake of wounding a protective Detlef in the process. Genevieve then went berserk and furiously attacked Drach damaging his new body enough that it allowed Detlef to get free. Thankfully unlike Oswald years before Detlef wasn't an easily scared pansy and so instead of running, he grabbed a sledgehammer that one of the stagehands had left lying around and came back swinging to protect his vampire lover. Normally this attack would have done jack-all to the immortal enchanter but as it happens Sigmar had apparently been watching the whole mess unfold and decided to channel his power through Detlef which allowed him to cave the 15,000-year-old bastard's head in and stop his still incomplete resurrection cold.
After the defeat of Drachenfels, Detlef then killed the traitorous Oswald with a sword after the latter botched an attempt to assassinate Karl Franz and his son. With that problem taken care of and his debt wiped clean courtesy of a grateful Empire, Genevieve and Detlef settled down together in Altdorf.
They lived in a newly purchased theatre, the Vargr Breughel Memorial Playhouse (named after a friend of Detlef who died after he was outed as a mutant), where Detlef continued to write plays known the world over from Ulthuan to Lustria (though the latter was probably referring to the human settlements there such as the town of Skeggi and not the Slann). Unfortunately, their fun times were interrupted by an attempt on their lives by a leftover creation of Drachenfels; a magical living mask capable of possessing its wielders called the Animus. Though they defeated it with some help Genevieve was disturbed by this attack and believing she was having a negative influence on Detlef took up traveling again to protect him. Detlef was highly upset by her vanishing and ended up writing a series of sonnets about her called “To my Unchanging lady” that was widely considered his best work when it wasn't being suppressed by local authorities.
While Detlef was off grieving for his loss Genevieve was busy traveling through Tilea. There she found herself trapped within the strange enchantments of the House of Udolpho which was rigged by its master to brainwash everyone who stepped foot in it into constantly acting out ridiculously over the top gothic scenarios forever. Luckily she managed to escape with the aid of several people including the revolutionist Aleksandar Kloszowski whom she ended up accompanying back to the Empire. This proved to not be a good idea though as Kloszowski had a warrant on his head for helping stage the big fog riot in Altdorf some time earlier. As a result Imperial spymaster Mornan Tybalt, the Keeper of the Imperial counting house caught wind of Genevieve’s traveling with the wanted criminal and after capturing her in Middenheim he used her association with Kloszowski to blackmail her. Tybalt threatened her with being imprisoned in silver shackles in Mundsen Keep as well as ruining Detlef and so with his agent Balthus she was sent to kill Tybalt's rival Graf Rudiger von Unheimlich while he was on a unicorn hunt. Fortunately, her target turned out to be a generally terrible person deserving of death and so after finishing him off and the later ousting of Tybalt from the Imperial court she finally returned to Detlef after years apart. Unfortunately, it was just after a vampire hating religious fanatic Antiochus Bland had passed some law to try and set in motion a new war against the undead. After stopping that plan and helping Lady Melissa get the law overturned Gené and Detlef were married by the Arch-Lector of Sigmar no less (the benefits of their being friends with the Emperor and whatnot), however, it proved a short-lived marriage as just over a decade later Detlef would die in his 50s.
Later it was revealed that Drachenfels was not quite as dead as everyone had hoped. During the End Times he appeared again as a bodiless spirit with no memory of who he was. Turns out getting your head caved in with a divinely enhanced hammer when your only halfway resurrected is a good way to end up with a severe case of amnesia. Nagash stumbled across Drachenfels and recognizing him from an earlier encounter when he had enlisted his aid against the then mortal Sigmar promised to return Drach’s memories and name to him if he served him as a servant. Fortunately for the undead Bretonnian bar wench, Nagash reneged on his promise, and Drach after angrily switching sides to join Chaos would find himself put down for good when he made the mistake of possessing a certain very devout Sigmarite priest named Luthor Huss. Though initially in control of his new body a few choice insults by Vlad von Carstein ultimately managed to awaken the priest’s dormant consciousness and his surging Sigmarite faith seemingly flash-fried the spectral bastard out of existence.
Genevieve herself MAY have had a fleeting unnamed cameo in the lorebook End Times: Nagash. One of the short lore pieces goes into detail about a mysterious meeting that Balthasar Gelt has with an unnamed woman cloaked in shadow and who basically feeds him the idea and plans for the Auric Bastion to stop the Chaos invasion. This is later revealed to be the minion of Queen Neferata, the top Lahmian vampire, as the Vampires have a vested interest in the world continuing and not being destroyed.
The kicker is that in this meeting Gelt notes that the unnamed girl sounds like a Bretonnian from Parravon or Montfort, is very young and drinks a ruby liquid from a goblet. She also states she does not like her female master. Considering that Genevieve is a notably free-willed and independent Lahmian Vampire from Parravon and that otherwise, all Lahmians revere Neferata, this seems like a suggestive nod from GW to the audience as to who this woman is, though it looks like coincidental evidence, but pretty cool nonetheless. As to WHY Genevieve may want to work for her progenitor Neferata considering she has ignored more malevolent vampires in the past, she could just have an alignment of interests with her in not wanting to see the world ended or it's her way of serving Nagash so he doesn't set her brain on fire inside her skull (like he did with all Vampires who refused to serve him, such as Zacharias The Everliving) since as a Vampire Genevieve would certainly have felt Nagash's return.
During Karl's ascendance into God Emperorhood during End Times: Archaon, a wave of holy magic radiated through Altdorf and burned away the filth of generations (as well as all daemons and undead). This likely did not include her though as earlier in the book she had been off delivering a message of warning from Neferata to Vlad von Carstein before telling him she intends to go home, something which many people took to mean Bretonnia. In her own words: "My time in this world is coming to an end, just as yours is, and I think I would rather meet it in my homeland." Even if she had come to see Altdorf as her home due to her time with Detlef she likely survived the blast of holy energy despite her undead nature, as according to her novels Karl and his son Luitpold II were rather fond of her thanks to her actions against Drachenfels. Regardless she most definitely was killed when Archaon managed to blow the planet up at the end of the whole End Times mess. As of yet, there has been no trace of her in Age of Sigmar so it’s unclear if her soul made the transition to the new world.
The Drachenfels and Genevieve stories rely on canon that has since been retconned, and any discussion about either will usually start an argument over the canonicity of the story. To get a picture of how retconned it is, the Bretonnia of her stories is modeled on the pre-French revolution version that was written over YEARS ago. The fact she's a very popular character in the Warhammer Fantasy communities, and her books are generally regarded as being very well written makes those discussions particularly heated.
Almost every source cites the fact that Vampires are universally reviled in the Warhammer Fantasy universe, and in the Empire being or working with the Undead is a heresy as grave as working with Chaos. Despite this Genevieve is openly a vampire and mingles throughout Empire society. She only receives unease from others rather than being chased with pitchforks, and the Witch Hunters of the Empire would normally not hesitate to FWIP anyone regardless of their position. For this, the only logical explanation is that she has had the approval of three Emperors, whose authority even the Witch Hunters must obey.
However, the books infer Genevieve's vampirism is an open secret, as she was chased more than once by angry mobs when her vampirism was discovered but managed to sneak away. Furthermore, she had a vampire support group (of other vampires) who let her know if any Witch Hunters were nearby, in which case she'd keep a low profile. It also helped that she only fed on willing people or criminals.
Drachenfels himself is full of canon plot holes, but that can be seen and argued on his own page.
Vermintide's Franz Lohner has said he recalls meeting a lady vampire whose name starts with 'G'.
The fact that in the End Times event Drachenfels is canon suggests however that Genevieve is as well. Then again, in End Times everything, well, ended.
That being said, it's been shown through the works focusing on Nagash that many Undead survived into the new world (at the very least his Mortarchs and their mounts) so she may have persisted into Age of Sigmar as well, and it's not completely impossible she could be a Sigmarine, as Sigmar has shown he’s not shy about stealing souls from Nagash and he has even managed to convert chaos corrupted souls into Sigmarines. Plus it could be argued that since Sigmar didn’t instantly smite everyone at her marraige ceremony in the old world despite it being officiated by the hammer-Pope he seems at the very least to somewhat approve of her.
On the Tabletop
Genevieve, thanks to her globe-trotting lifestyle, could be fluffed into most Order armies. Of course Empire and Bretonnia armies work best, as does the player who fields a homemade Cathayan army. For a model the Bretonnian Damsels or the Vampire maidens off the Coven Throne model work best. If using End Times rules, then a wizard in Lore of Undeath works as well.