Asssassin's Creed: Pandemonium is a fanon story set in Europe from 1911-1939, with a short prologue set before those dates, and an epilogue accounting the horrors of World War 2. It focuses on the half-English, half-Swiss Assassin Gerrard Beck as he searches for truth in ordinary people during extraordinary times, revealing a conspiracy deeper than he could have ever imagined as he does.
Prologue: Sums of Our MemoriesEdit
23rd December, 1973Edit
Dear whomever it may concern,
My death has not quite arrived yet, though I feel its embrace tug at me as longily as a dog tugs at his master to go off on an adventure round the hills and forests of his village. I have felt its pull ever since those days in 1906 when I lost those I held dear and was forced into this fight of ideologies and intrigue. I have learned to accept it, and do not fear the end now.
The events of my life have swept me along a destiny I could never have imagined as a young man, working for my farm in Grindelwald, in the shadow of the almighty Eiger. I have witnessed the horrors of total warfare on two occasions, and have felt a third, world destroying war becoming ever more a possibility.
But I have also fought, unwillingly at first, on both sides of a conflict I never knew existed. One between two organisations who pull the strings of power, who fight to protect mandkind's free will or seek to protect us through order. I'm talking, of course, about the fight between the Assassins and the Templars.
With the little strength I have left, I am adding these words to a long abandoned notebook, given to me on the eve of my eighteenth birthday. Here I will account my incredible story. I will tell of events known by all, and of others that have remained secret. Here I will tell of how I was forced into the Assassins, and then the Templars.
Life in Switzerland, 1891 - 1906Edit
I lived my early life in the small village of Grindelwald, the mighty prescence of the Eiger towering above me, protecting me like the walls of a fortress. I was the third child of my parents, Joseph and Marlene. I remember toiling all day on our farm, but little else. Life was quiet. Simple. Monotonous. My mother died when I was 12, a victim of cancer. Life grew harder, but we carried on. In September 1905, however, those men arrived who would change my life forever.
I did not know why they came. In fact, I still do not. There is nothing of significance to anyone other than your modern mountaineers or skiiers in Grindelwald. Nothing of interest to the Assassins or the Templars. But still they came, two Templars and an Asassin. I did not know of their true nature at the time of course. I thought of them merely as businessmen, visiting to develop the Swiss alps. How wrong I was.
It was April 1906 when I lost my family to a housefire. But this was no accident. I still know who was behind it. And yet, I joined his ranks. His name was Michael Giroud, and he was a Frenchman. He was tall and thin, but deceptively strong. Short, finely combed hair, somewhere between ginger and blonde. My memory alludes the rest of his features. But what I can remember is the striking impression he made as he lifted me from the burning wreckage of my house. I was forever in debt to this man. But this relationship did not last as long as I would have hoped.
This man, Michael, had saved my life, and yet I was unwilling to leave Grindalwald with him. Still he persisted to recruit me to his cause, speaking in cryptics to save me from the truth until the time was right. I understood that his kind were few and far between, and he needed as much help as he could get. But I was unwilling to accept my family's deaths, unwilling to leave my home without them. It took the Templars to change my mind.
They hunted me down, believing that I had already joined the Assassins. Like the rest of my childhood, my memory fails me when remembering strict events, though I do remember being intimidated into the corner of a bar room by one, who had recently survived a brawl with perhaps all of the town's men. How I escaped that encounter, I do not know. But then I was in France. Lyon, to be exact. I had still not been told of the Assassins or Templars. I only did as I was told because I had no other choice. I wanted things to return to how they had been.
In 1909, for my eighteenth birthday, I was given this notebook from Michael. He told me to guard it well, for one day some may know our story. For the next two years, I was pushed. I trained. I fought. I learned. And, in February 1911, I was finally taught of the Order. Again, I did not fight for principal; I neither agreed nor disagreed with what either side fought for. I simply followed orders. I was ignorant.
On the other hand, I was aware of the growing rivalry between Britain and the newly-formed Germany. I had learned of the uneasy alliance between France, Britain and Russia, and as I arrived in Lyon I began to hear of a 'Moroccan Crisis', as well as of the annexation of Bosnia by Austria-Hungary in 1908. It was quite clear that Europe was heading for war.
Act 1: The Arms RaceEdit
Morocco, Serbia; 1911 - 1914Edit
Fez, Morocco, 1911Edit
The rioting mob grew. Marching on towads the Sultan's palace, they wanted change, which would not come. At least not in the way they wanted.
France had to send troops down. There were Europeans living in Morocco. In April, myself and Michael were sent, with many other Frenchmen, to quell the rebellion. I was excited at the time. I was finally to have some action in my life. Despite this, I still loathed Michael. I knew it was him who killed my family. We lived safely, and he needed a reason for me to leap to his cause. Instead he had created, not an enemy, but not a friend. He was arrogant. Selfish. I would leave him at the first chance I got. But when this came, I did not know how to react.
Our French legion had reached Fez. Aiming to protect French and European interests in the area, we threatened violence. But still the crowd argued for the removal of the Sultan. We had no other choice. As soon as shots were fired, order broke down. I was charged to the ground by 5, 6, 7 men, maybe more. It was sheer chaos. Adrenaline pumped through my veins. I can only thank Michael for two things: the training and the blade. Without both, I would have perished.
Dispatching of those who had aimed to kill me, I searched for Michael. He was locked in a bloody brawl a couple of hundred metres away. I knew him well, and decided he could hold his own. Choosing to stay with the rest of the French to put down the rebellion, I fought on.
It was a weary day, and many of the most enthusiastic rebels had been...dealt with. But there was still popular support against the Sultan. I was so excited about the uncertainty of it all that I had forgotten about Michael. It took me until that evening to go looking for him. And what I found shocked me to the core.
Lying on the ground was a corpse. A pool of dried blood surrounded it. On its wrists were bracers. This pale, dead man was unmistakeably Michael Giroud. I was alone in the middle of the Second Moroccan Crisis.
Agadir, Morocco, 1911Edit
I did not know how to react to Michael's death. He had been such a pivotal figure in my life. But I remember loathing him so much... I suppose I wanted to just banish any memory of him. Now I only remember the negative things. And so I did not mourn much. Continuing with my French batallion, I made new friends. As I say, I cannot remember much of what happened before the war. Although I did arrive at the port city of Agadir in northern Morocco in June 1911. It was here that I learned of the Templars' true intentions.
The air here was grimy. Dirty. The city centre was hot and bustling, and there was much activity at the port. It was exotic. Exciting. We were stationed towards the outer edges of the city, though our temporary camp was certainly not as pleasant as some of the buildings in the city itself; there was little regard for hygine, and the groans of the wounded or ill soldiers reverberated around the camp. I hated it, and I loved the city. So I snuck out, every night. There was a bar nearby that I would visit. But one day, I heard of the plans for peace.
It was a dank, grimy place, that bar. Smoke from the locals' pipes hung heavy in the air. It was badly lit, the smell of the pig fat that the candles constituted of choking me, as the candles themselves provided little light. But it was somewhere to go. And as I sat there one night, four men walked in.
Two seemed German, one looked British and the fourth Moroccan. They spoke in hushed tones, and I ignored them at first. But then, as one ordered drinks, I noticed something glimmer on his hand. I only noticed it for a moment, but this was long enough. I immediately recognised it as the Mark of Kain. These men were Templars. And so I approached, cautiously, to overhear their conversation. I was glad to be rid of the world of Assassins and Templars, but my natural curiosity overwhelmed me. And what I heard betrayed everything I had been told about the Templars.
"I am sorry... I could not stop them. The other kind are too influencial." This man had a heavy German accent influencing his French.
"So the Panther is coming here? Now? That gunboat?" The Moroccan looked frightened. A bead of sweat rolled down from his forehead.
"Ja. Like I said, I wish to prevent tensions from rising. We do not want a war. Disorder will harm our means."
"I understand what Wilhelm is saying. I do not believe that I could prevent British intervention, should the Panther dock in Agadir." The Brit had spoken now as well. "Our rivalry with the Germans... Sending a gunboat would look too much like an act of aggression. We would edge ever closer to war."
"Yes, Daniel. But if we act fast, we may prevent future...accidents like this occuring, ja?"
Interupting, and with an air of pride, the Moroccan proclaimed, "That is true, Franz. In fact, only two months ago, I helped prevent the Sultan's death."
"Yes. The other kind, they came with the French. But instead of seeking to quell the uprising by defeating my people, they seeked to end it swiftly by killing the Sultan. As you could imagine, the Germans and Austro-Hungarians would not be best pleased. So I worked hard to find them. I prevailed. And I killed Michael Giroud."
"Ah, so it was you? I was aware that his influence had greatly dropped recently, but really... You are sure he is dead?"
"Certain. We can still work to avoid a war."
I can still remember those words to the letter. But my memory of the rest of my time in Agadir is shrouded in a veil. I can only remember that those men spoke the truth. In July, the Panther arrived at the port of Agadir. Soon after, the Germans would back down, but Europe was already in a collision cource with war.
Sarajeveo, Serbia, 1914Edit
I left the army soon after returning from Morocco in 1911. Finding work as a carpenter in Paris, I spent most of my time and income on gambling, wine, and women of the night. It was a waste of time, a waste of life, a waste of knowledge. Knowledge that could have helped me prevent war.
It was the Black Hand Movement. A Serbian nationalist group that wanted to avenge the annexation of Bosnia by Austria-Hungary years beforehand, and create a greater Serbia in the process. But this was not all that they wanted. Or at least, not those at the top. I heard murmurings, here and there, of what was to happen. Of course, I paid little attention; the bars in which I overheard these conversations were the same place that I went to forget about life. And yet... These rumours niggled on me. They wore be down, over the years in Paris. I became ever more curious. And ever more determined to stop war. And so it was, that in June 1914, I arrived in Sarajevo, where Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary was to be killed by the Assassins.
It was a bustling city, though backward, as much of eastern Europe was at the time. Heavily influenced by Ottoman culture, but also sporting Slavic traits of its own, grey stony buildings contrasted with colourful markets advertising an array of exotic goods. The paupers bustled through the dank, humid streets as smoke from opium dens slithered out from windows as a choking smog. The date was the 28th, a Serbian national holiday. The Archduke had decided that now was the best time to visit, to try and rekindle relationships with this very nationalist country.
Crowds lined the streets, eager to catch a glimpse of the Archduke's automobile. Even the guards, dressed in blue and grey, could not resist turning to look. Some help they were. I could not for the life of me search for the Assassins myself.
My lack of care towards the Assassins' plot proved to be my downfall, and that of Europe's. I wish I had not squandered away my money in Paris! Had I been more eager to be involved in the secret conflict, I may have been able to join the Templars... To identify the Black Hand members... To stop them...
But no. As I shoved my way through the maddening crowd, the Archduke's car slowly driving along the road beside me (though obstructed from view by the Serbs), I heard a deafening explosion. The people scattered as screams erupted. Already there were some dead on the ground, a pool of crimson blood slowly growing beneath them. The Archduke's car sped off into the distance, trying to avoid another attack. I tried to run after it, but I could not. That was the last and only time I saw Franz Ferdinand alive.
As it became apparent that I would not be able to follow the Archduke, and with this assassination attempt seemingly having failed, I assumed that war, for now, had been averted. I turned, instead trying to find the Assassin who had so disastrously thrown the bomb that was intended to have killed Franz, but found that the police, far from being useless, had already detained several men. In my young, foolish ignorance, I felt safe. I thought war had been stopped. Searching for a bar, I was about to waste my life here as I had done in Paris. But no.
For later that day, the Assassins won. Gavrilo Princip, barely a man at the time, managed to find the Archduke. He fired 2 shots, killing the Archduke and his wife. One month later, I was back in France, and Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. The First World War had begun, and neither I nor the Templars had been able to avert it.