Stephen of Blois
The youngest of the group known as “the king’s lads”, Stephen is the son of the Count Stephen-Henry of Blois and Adela of Normandy, the latter a daughter of William the Conqueror. Thus, Stephen is the older cousin of the two royal children, Maud and William Ætheling. He is also a cousin of Robert Fitz Roy. The third of four surviving brothers, Stephen spends much time at the court of his royal uncle due to the insistence of his mother, Adela, though it is some time before he makes his first trip across the channel to England. Naturally gifted at sports, Stephen is partially motivated by a desire to restore his family’s honor after his father showed signs of cowardice while fighting in the Holy Land.