A new beginning - Part2
Markuz, February 17, 2014
Translated by: Stefania

We continue the analysis of the letters by Thom Khavanagh from where we left, with our young Sage struggling with Peter Beckford, the man for whom he works in Jamaica.


Of my Employer I must say Something, for it was owing to his Connexions that I came to find such troubled Dealings. Peter Beckford was a Man of grate Charisma and Pryde. In 1662 he had come to Jamaica and in just 10 yeares had fast-procured himself a sizable Portion of Land which he sow'd with Cane as early as he was able.
Upon my coming into his Orbit, he own'd - claim'd all about him - one of the largest private Holdings of Land in all the World, rivalling only Kings and Emperors for his Largess. This same Surpluss applied to the Number of slaves in his emploie;- whereas he had arrived in Jamaica with a compliment of three, he now own'd the better part of three-hundred.

A shrewde and relentless man of Business, Mister Beckford was known also be subservient to a Temper of cyclonic Power;- Wrath and Fury and Enmity were his primary means of settling Arguments that could nott be concluded in Mister Beckford's immediate favor. He was however always kinde to me and as gracious a Man as one could hope an Employer to be. But this I put down to my Status in his eyes;- he was a traditionall Man with a Respect for Rank and Breeding.

In earlier Tymes he hadd been the Governor de facto of the Island, and though a Statesman no longer upon my Arrival he still bore all the Sines of a man who felt it his natural Dutie to lead. Further, his political Connexions he valued as deeply as his Sugar and the Money it brought him;- and it was in this Capacity, following the arrival of a Spanish soldier, that I met the man who would change my Lyfe for the worse, forever;- a young man named Laureano Torres.

"You mark well, Adé. I've just overheard
one of the Beckford men talking grandly
about his plantation"
Our Sage restarts from where he stopped and dedicates the eleventh letter to Peter Beckford, his employer. So Thom justifies both in terms of plot and historically how he got his hands on his properties and his collection of manuscripts and artifacts.

About Beckford, the Italian translation gives a more negative representation of this character than the English version. Indeed the original text doesn't talk about the "ill-concealed disgust” for Thom's origins indicated in the Italian letters, and doesn't make any reference to the fact that Thom has a “lowest” social position according to Beckford, a part instead “added” in the Italian files. Moreover in the ending of the letter, the Italian version says Beckford "benefits from politically influent friends thanks to his money", a negative characterization and a wrong translation of the original "his political Connexions he valued as deeply as his Sugar and the Money it brought him" that simply suggests how Beckford valued his political connections as much as his sugar (not even mentioned in the Italian translation) and the money he brought him.

As affirmed in the previous letter it really seems that Thom, at this point, puts aside the voices and the memories he heard when he was young, but it is just in this moment that one of the protagonists of the AC4 main plot appears, Laureano Torres, Grand Master of the Templar Order in the Caribbean, at that time a simple Spanish soldier.


It was in April of 1673 when I espy'd the Galleon in Kingston's Harbour, flying the Colours of the Men of Holland, which I thought queer but not unlikely. This was a Ruse, however, for the Ship's Cargo was most assuredly Spanish;- a Gentleman call'd Torres, once a soldier in the Spanish army, now an Emissary on behalf of his King. Or so said he to Peter Beckford. I learn'd later that he call'd himself a Templar, and had made his Visit to Beckford's Plantation to look upon Master Beckford's straynge collection of collect'd Manuscripts.

Torres was two Days with Mister Beckford when another Object took his full Attention;- namely, me. The Syght of my Face stirr'd in him a strange sort of Excitement, which I found altogether untoward at first, until he ply'd me with Questions that shock'd me to the Core of my Being. Said he to me, one evening after Supper- "Hear you voices, Mister Kavanagh?" - "How is that?" I answer'd, feigning Ignorance, though shaken in Truth. "Voices. From the dark of your Minde. Or Memories, to be clearer, as if from another Lyfe entire," And here I was terrified.- how was it that this man knew the odd Riddle of my Lyfe as if it were a banal Fact of History?

"I know not what you mean, Master Torres" said I, and took my Leave of him, so anxious as I was. "Goodnight to you, Sir" said he, as I depart'd. "We shall speake again when you are rest'd and ready to talk." Still shaken, I bade him good Night and made for my Bedchamber, feeling another Reverie coming strong upon me. When I reach'd my Bed, I fell into bothe..

Concept art of Laureano Torres

In this letter Thom gives us a clear temporal reference: he's 21 when he meets for the first time Torres, who initially introduces himself as an emissary of the King of Spain (correcting the definition of soldier of the previous letter) and later he even says he's a Templar. Torres visits Beckford to consult his big collection of manuscripts, a reason that gives them such an importance that they're not only collectible objects anymore, considering the Templars' interest. Moreover this letter tells us Beckford still had the manuscripts in 1673, while in 1715 (when the events of AC4 start) they are already scattered across the Caribbean islands, often protected by guards. This means that somehow the manuscripts were stolen (maybe this was Torres' original intent?) and then in some way they were scattered exactly like the pages of Altair's Codex.

Torres is very lucky though because, whatever his intent with Beckford's collection is, he finds Thom and sees he's a Sage, object of the Templars' (and Assassins') attention way more than Beckford's manuscripts.
“SIt has been forty-five years since
anyone has seen a true Sage”
Torres is thrilled by this discovery and starts showering Thom with more than direct questions about his voices and reveries, to such an extent that he says these events belong to a life different from Thom's one. This means that in 1673 Templars already knew well how the life of a Sage worked (heterocromia, facial traits, memories and voices from the TWCB era and also the possible connection with the Observatory). Also, considering his questions, we can suppose that Torres is already a high ranking Templar more than 20 years before AC4, (we'll know from letter 17 that he's already a Grand Master), considering that he has access to all this information. So this is the arrival of a true Sage, dating back 45 years, mentioned by Du Casse at the beginning of AC4.

Thom is terrified by how much Torres knows about his condition without even knowing him. It's a very different Thom from the seasoned man of 1706 who writes in the first letter that he wants to be a “friendly voice” for other people in the world suffering his same unsettled heart. Here Thom still thinks he's the only one in a hard but still bearable situation and he even distances it from himself for some time. The reaction of horror is then justified and so also his walking away preoccupied. Torres' questions make Thom remember everything he had put aside, causing the reveries to re-emerge, like the one in the following letter.


Here I relate another Reverie..


"Beloved," said she, a voice so intimate and familiar. "Our Colleagues conspire against us. They dither and sigh, resign'd to their Fates, content to champion the Humans. But there is Hope for us; there is a chance we might inure our Bodies to the chilling Worlde, the poison'd Atmosphere, and the war itself. Will you aid me? Will you submit?"

And here, I hear my owne Voice in answer;-- "Yes, Beloved. What must I do?"

"Tranference," said she "The shuttling of our Mindes from these old Bodies into new Forms. Mechanical bodies perhaps, or into those of our instruments, our Humans. In short, I believe there may be a way to transfer all we knowe and all we are into other forms, in this way we may survive the coming Cataclysm and live to see our People repopulate the Earth, and recover her from those we foolishly set loose upon it."

"Tranferance" I said aloud. "Our minds into alternate Vessels? A dangerous Prospeckt, but reasonable."

"Yes!" said she, "And who better to make this Leap than you my beloved Husband. With a Minde unparallel'd. A Constitution unrivall'd. Arckitect of the Observatorie, Overseer of Eden's tools, the brightest light in our Civilization. If you are not capable of making this leap, perhaps no one is.."

And here replied I;-- "I will do this for you, Beloved. For us and our people.."

As shown in the first letters, the expression "my beloved" marks, at least in AC4, the way Juno and Aita call themselves. So the two speakers of the dialogue are immediately identified.

Juno, showing her usual “love” for humankind and her own race, speaks with Aita, saying her colleagues gave up hope and put trust into humans. With this sentence she resumes Tinia's speech in the eighth letter, his resignation to extinction within a century and his support to Minerva's idea about the transfer, from generation to generation, of the information learnt by humans. The dialogue in this letter, then, must be considered consecutive to what we saw in the eighth letter.

The usual "love for humankind"
expression by Juno
Up against this perspective, Juno offers an alternative to protect TWCB rather than humans: the chance to “inure” their bodies, or better their essences, to the war and the “poisonous” atmosphere, intended probably as the atmosphere subsequent to the imminent catastrophe.

Here Juno suggests what would have become the sixth method, in other word the trascendence, here called transferance. Juno's idea, as we already saw in AC3 and analyzed in the in the article about the six methods of salvation, is to transfer the mind, and so the conscience, from the bodies of TWCB to other vessels, for example mechanical ones (like the machines in the Grand Temple where Juno will transfer her own conscience) or directly in the “instruments” of TWCB (as we saw with Consus in Project Legacy). I'd also like to make you notice the use of the term “instruments” for humans, that returns after Tinia's mention in the eighth letter - a term that is also missing in the Italian translation.

Aita's answer, as in the dialogue of the eighth letter, seems initially to have a more technical nature, aimed to evaluate the feasibility of the project rather than the reasons or the consequences depending from that. Aita says it's a practicable idea even if he stresses its dangerousness. Maybe seeing a bit of uncertainty, maybe to ingratiate him or maybe simply to please him, Juno starts singing the praises of Aita saying he's the only one who can realize the idea of the trascendence. From Juno's praises, indeed, we come to know several information about Aita that increase his importance: not only Aita is gifted with an uncommon intellect and physical constitution, but he's also the Architect of the Observatory and the Overseer of Eden's tools, and so the brightest light of the (First) Civilization. The last piece of information is important because, firstly, if he's the “architect” of the Observatory, he also planned, at the time of this conversation, all the functions of the Observatory (minus the functions related to the Sages), from the armillary sphere to the set of Vials, to the security system.
Top view of the Observatory
Furthermore this means the Observatory was already up and running at that time and so also its function was already needed and used. Who were TWCB spying on with the technological help of Aita? Other TWCB? Or maybe was the Observatory built just before the war with the humans for “military purposes”? Maybe the second hypothesis is more relevant bcause the Observatory has several rows of seating around the central altar and this means that probably the observation activity could be carried out by any member of TWCB or at least by many, not necessarily an inner circle as happened with the methods of salvation.
Secondly, Juno tells us Aita was the overseer / person in charge of the “Eden's tools”, that can be easily assimilated with the Pieces of Eden. Moreover, the fact that Aita is behind the creation of the Pieces of Eden demonstrates his possible importance in the saga, especially for the future installments, given that, if he was the supervisor, he knows all the secrets and abilities of these artifacts and almost certainly this is a prerogative of the Sages too. In addition to this, the "Eden's tools" term, as pointed out by our Hephaestus, could be a support to the idea that intends the Pieces of Eden as born / grown on the structure that we saw in the Truth video of AC2.

The last essential element of this dialogue is the phrase pronounced by Aita at the end. Indeed our member of TWCB agrees with Juno, or better he says he'll try to realize the transference / trascendence for her, for them and for their people. In this sentence we see Aita working to save his own civilization, way more inclined to Juno's intentions (regarding the protection of TWCB, not the hate for humans) compared with the Aita of the eighth letter, where he affirmed the feasibility of Minerva's idea and was strongly opposed by his beloved Juno. Is it possible that a simple flattery was enough to change his mind? Or did something happen that we don't know?


Lost as I was in my Reverie, I fail'd to see the Envelope slipp'd 'neath the Door to my Bedchamber. It read thus: "Dear Sir, forgive the Alarm I must have raised with my Queries, but you have the exact Likeness of a Man my Colleagues and I have long'd to meet. Allow me an Audience and I will explain all. Your Friend, Laureano Torres"

I ponder'd this Letter for some time that Evening, wondering what it could mean that I had the "exact Likeness" of a Man he knew, and why it should raise so much intrigue. I wonder'd at this for hours, Pacing about the Room with a Minde to slip from my Chamber, when of a sudden I hearde a rapide Succession of Reports from Pistols and Rifles, outside in the Garden. To my Eare it sound'd as if a Warr had begun, with me a Bystander at its Center..

I dropp'd to my Knees and hid on the far side of my Bed, away from the Window, and shutt my eyes. But as I did this, a voice call'd out to me from my Chamber door. "Mister Kavanaugh!" it said. I raysed my head and open'd my eyes and there saw a Figure cutting a terrible Outline;- hood'd and robed in dusky Sienna, the Man lift'd a small Pipe to his Lipps and blew. I felt a Sting upon my Neck, as if from a Mosquito. I open'd my Mouth to Protest, but thereupon a Wave of Fatigue took me and I fell fast asleep.

With this letter Thom confirms the misfortune that Torres brings him. The Templar leaves him a letter trying to draw Thom over, to incite him to speak and tell about himself, since he noticed he scared our protagonist. Thom reads the letter, focusing on the detail of the identical aspect to another person highlighted by Torres, and keeps thinking about it for hours with the idea of running away, when he suddenly hears a shooting outside his chamber. The letter finishes with the arrival of a hooded man, the assassin agent who led the assault to Thom's chamber and who proves to know his name. Immediately after, Thom is hit probably by a sleep dart (in the Italian version it's openly mentioned) and falls asleep.

It's interesting to see how the attack of the Assassins happened only a few hours after Torres realized Thom was a Sage due to his features and not before. It's then reasonable to suppose that other Assassin spies were present in Peter Beckford's plantations (maybe they were interested too in his collection) or maybe in Torres' following or in his relationship network, in case Torres had informed some Templar colleague of what he had found.


I awoke some Days hence in a bustling Native village in the Presence of that same man, many Leagues from where I had call'd my Home. A Native himself, with a strong and serious but gentle Face, he named himself Bahlam, and bade me nott be fryghten'd.

Strangely, I was not;- for his demeanor was calm and his words were kind. I ask'd him why he had brought me to this Place. His Surprise seem'd genuine, and he told me, "You are a Sage. Your face tells it plain;- your Eyes most of all." I did not know what to make of this Suggestion. He went on;- "You are but one of a long Lineage of identical Men;- men born outside their original Tyme. Your Likeness and your Soul are a Pattern, repeat'd through the Ages. Oftentime a century or more passes without the appearance of a Sage; other times, Two are born in the same Decade. We know not why."

And dash my Brains, but all he spoke was knowne to me in some intrinsick Way, and yet it frighten'd me all the same. How could it be that I was a Man reborn? How could it be that I had already lived one Lyfe, and had plodd'd through a second, still pondering the first? I spent many a Day with this man Bahlam, and in that time he told me all he knews, then ask'd questions of his own he hoped I might answer...

Also here I have to point out a translation mistake, alas. While in the original version Thom asks his kidnapper why he was brought there and the latter replies he did it because he's a Sage, going on with the explanation, in the Italian version Thom asks where he is and the answer “You are the Sage” is inevitably illogical.

Artwork of a village in the jungle
Thom wakes up some days after in a native village together with the Assassin called Bahlam. Strangely Bahlam doesn't frighten him like Torres, even listening to his words. At last Bahlam tells Thom some new information about what he's experiencing: he calls him “Sage” for the first time and says he's but one of a long lineage (even if the term isn't correct, because Sages don't have any blood relationship) of identical men with the same features, in whom likeness and soul (or rather the personality and the set of memories) are a pattern repeated through the ages. Furthermore the Assassin says the Sages are born outside their original time and also their appearance appears to be random: sometimes they are born in the same decade (and not "other times two are born together", as indicated in the Italian letter, a fact that can make readers think about a twin birth), other times a century or more passes between two Sages.
This dialogue makes us understand how much the Assassins knew about the Sages already in 1700s and how much data they had. Indeed the hooded people must have met or known many Sages to calculate the temporal distance between their appearances and they must have spoken with them to know that they were “outside their original time" and somehow understand not only that they had memories and reveries not belonging to them, but also that these memories and reveries were the same for every Sage.


For severall Days, I stay’d with my Captor, Bahlam, asking him all mannor of Questions and he asking the same of me;- and all the While I wonder’d what Fate he intend’d for me. At last, on the seventh Day I reveal’d what lay heavy on my Heart.

“What do you want of me, Sir, that you keep me prisoner so?” And at this, Bahlam, laugh’d and answer’d “You are no Prisoner, Sage! You may take your Leave at any Point. Only tell us where you wish to be dropp’d, and if it be in our Power, we shall transport you thence.”

This Answer surprised, then anger’d me:- “Why then did you spirit me away with such a diabolical Method? Kidnapp’d, no less!” And said he in Answer “Your Master host’d a Templar, and may now be one himself. Such Men are not to be trust’d with a Prize so valuable as you. Steer clear of them, for they seek the Knowledge that hides in your Minde. Your Dreames, your Memories, and the Location of a Place once dear to you … The Observatorie”

This word rang in my Eares, for I had heard it before. Another Memorie from a Tyme long ago. “And what do YOU desire of me, Sir?” I ask’d him. “Would you Steale the Secrets buried within me too?” Bahlam smiled;- “I would not shun them, but to share them is a Point for you to decide. Your Secrets are your own … and yours alone to Lend…”

Thom stays with the Assassins for some days talking with Bahlam and finds out that, even if he was kidnapped, he's not a prisoner. Bahlam explains that the reason for his quick kidnapping must be attributed to the presence of a Templar at Beckford's manor, obviously Torres. Bahlam states that Templars are looking for the information in his memories and they're interested in him to obtain the location of the Observatory, the same place the protagonists of AC4 are looking for. The word "Observatory" rings in Thom's mind because he already heard it in one of Aita's memories, the one in letter 13.
The letter ends with Bahlam who doesn't deny he would accept to know Thom's secret, but gives him the freedom of sharing them or not, in line with the freedom of thought and behavior proposed by the Assassins' philosophy.


After my difficult Counsel with Bahlam, I took a Day to ruminate on what should be done. Notions straynge and uncertain battled in my Head for Supremacie, and I was never on one Idea long before its Opposite seem'd a better Option. Yet at last made my Decision.

"Sir, you have been gracious with me." I told him;- "And my Trust in you is compleat. Yet I cannot share my Visions and Memories without first understanding them myself. I must therefore take my Leave and travel in secret to a Playce that has occupied my Thoughts for many Yeares."

Bahlam smiled and said;- "I understand well, and I believe in your Cause. To find the source of your Reveries will do you a great Good. Go, therefore, and answer these Riddles. We will provide you with supplies to see you safely embark'd." To which I replied; "Thank you, Sir. And if what I finde satisfies me, I will return hither and provide you with answers that may satisfie you as well."

In the days following, Bahlam was true to his Word. With his young son, Ah Tabai, in tow, he transport'd me first unto a fishing Village near his own Compound, and supplied me with Maps and Coin before issuing a Warning. "The Templars are lately come to the West Indies, and this Torres is their Grandmaster;- and though few now in Number, there must soon be Others. Take heed of them, and trust not their Entreaties. For what they cannot earn by Conversation, they will take by Force."
And with this, and a hearty goodbye, I took my Leave of this "Asssassyn" and set out for parts unknown, a vague sense of purpose pulling me forward...

Artwork of Tulum
Bahlam's talk mentioned in the previous letter makes Thom thoughtful and he needs a whole day before making a decision. Our Sage decides not to share what he knows about Aita's memories until he is able to understand them too and to do so he marks as his objective the place that filled his thoughts for many years, the Observatory (once again in the Italian version the reference was lost since it was translated as “Therefore I must leave and find a safe place where I can investigate my thoughts for a long time”). Bahlam smiles and keeps his promise of the previous letter, in which he said he would have provided Thom with supplies to transport him as far as he could. And so he takes him in a village near the Assassin compound "with his young son, Ah Tabai, in tow". From this letter we come to know that Bahlam is the father of Ah Tabai and considering that Ah Tabai is the Mentor of the Assassins in Tulum in the first half of the 1700s, then we can suppose, with a certain amount of certainty, that currently Thom is really in Tulum and also that Bahlam is a high-level assassin and maybe a Mentor. This may be confirmed by the information he has about the Templar activity, by what he knows about Torres and also by his presence during the attack at Beckford's manor.
Lastly, Bahlam warns Thom to avoid the Templars because, to obtain what they want, they'll employ force. Probably Thom accepts the suggestion and with a hearty goodbye he takes leave of the Assassins and sets out for his final destination.


After leaving Bahlam, I set out in a Stoop of my own and travell'd for nigh-on one Yeare about the West Indies, sailing with a small crew to all mannor of Jungles and Playas and Beaches, looking for a Sine, or a Landform that might spark in me a Memorie

Along my Way I met many a fine Peoples who did me great Kindnesses, and offer'd Work in exchange for more Provisions. In this way, I came to know the people of the new World and of the old, and found in all of them the same Hopes and Desyres. To travell is truley the finest education.

Then, after my thirteenth Month a-moving, I found my Object well-inland on a known Island;- here it was, the place Bahlam had call'd The Observatorie. O, what Memories the Location aroused! Well prior to clapping Eyes upon its Structure, I knew I had come to the correct spot. Leaving my men on shore, I pass'd alone through Jungles and deep Ravines, coming at last upon the Spot, and there marvel'd at its straynge and forboeing Presense.

Without prompt, I knew what do;- I press'd my Finger into what I knew to be a Portal, and upon its opening, I pass'd inside. What I saw there, however, shall remain a Mystery, for the World is not yet readie to hear my Tales, which should sound like Sorcery to all but my Friend, Bahlam, and perhaps the Templars who likely chase me still..

Artwork of the exterior of the Observatory
The eighteenth letter is dedicated to Thom's search for the Observatory. His journey lasts for a year, during which, with his small crew, he travels from island to island to find the craved location until, during the thirteenth month, he reaches Long Bay, in Jamaica. The location arouses such a profusion of memories that he understands he is in the right place even before seeing the First Civilization building, and also knows what to do (to enter, for example) without any additional prompt. Unfortunately though, Thom doesn't tell us what he did or saw during his visit to the Observatory. Surely he interacted in some way with TWCB or their technology since our Sage says that it should sound like sorcery to all but Assassins or Templars. Here too, unfortunately, the Italian version of the letter changes the meaning of the last sentence, that becomes "I'd be mistaken for a sorcerer, or, at best, for a madman, and Templars would start searching for me once again." So the Italian version loses the reference to Bahlam and especially the fact that Thom knows that only Assassins and Templars (that seem to have stopped searching for him in the Italian sentence) would believe in what he saw.


I remain'd alone at the Observatories Location, plumbing its Secrets, all the while besieged by such an influx of Reveries it would require a Tome twice the size of a Bible to relate them all. Let it suffice to say, that I came to understand the Nature of the two Souls within me, and I am now content.

After near on a Week there, I was visit'd by a Group of Natives from the Island, people of the Tiano tribe, I believe. They spott'd me first, and might have kill'd me straight away, had my utter surprise not widen'd my Eyes to such a Degree that their unusual qualities were seen by all. At seeing me thus, the Natives stopp'd and dropp'd to their knees with slow Gesticulations. I understood at once that these men were sworn to protect this place, and in my further Conversations with them since, I have made out that it was a PREVIOUS Sage who had employ'd them so;- or more precisely, I should say employed their Ancestors thus, for nearly 150 years had pass'd since the last "Sage" had come this way. I am told his Grave lies nearby, but is unmark'd and inaccessible.

It has now been over four Decades since my Arrival at this sacred Place, and onlie one Question yett lingers in my Minde;- how many more of my Sort have been here in Total? near eighty Millennia have pass'd since our Inception, and I am apt to believe the Number quite high. But I cannot knowe for certain.

But let that not trouble you, Reader;- for if you have followed my Storie entire, look you for my final Missive in the Playce where I will soon surely lay. Hidden near the Observatorie, where I have instructed the Guardians of this place to burie me when my Passage across this mortal Coil is at it's End. Therefore, fare thee well, until then.

We're already reaching the end of Mister Kavanagh's letters, but he's still giving us more or less important data. For example, he trolls the reader saying that within the Observatory he was exposed to such an influx of reveries that he could write two big books about them – but since the reader wouldn't believe it, as affirmed in the previous letter, he doesn't report them. The only thing he says about it is that at last he understood why he has a double soul and so now he's content and satisfied. Thanks to the Observatory and the memories it aroused, finally Thom can understand the existence of Aita and the memories in his mind, becoming an even more important element for Assassins and Templars.

Render of a guardian of Long Bay
After about a week spent near the Observatory, Thom get acquainted with the Taino guardians in Long Bay, who at first are ready to attack him like it happens with Edward in AC4 but then bow down after they identify him as a Sage due to his eyes (an element not mentioned in the Italian version). Ever since, somehow Thom was able to dialog with them finding out that the Tainos were the guardians of the Observatory because 150 years ago a previous Sage asked their ancestors to guard the place. Thom also highlights that the grave of this Sage is in Long Bay or somewhere near, but it is unmarked and unaccessible (maybe also to make so that his body could be untraceable too).

Thom also makes us understand that he decided to stay with the Tainos in Long Bay, since he satisfied the purpose of his journeys, finding the Observatory and giving an answer to his questions about the doubleness of his soul. So in a line Thom says forty years have passed since his arrival in Long Bay and only one question, of the many he had, is still unanswered, the number of Sages who completed their objective reaching the Observatory (on the contrary, in the Italian version Thom only wonders how many Sages have lived, without any reference to the possibility that they reached Long Bay). Thom tried to answer to this doubt supposing that many Sages were able to reach the Observatory, considering that humans were created around 80.000 years ago. With this hypothesis he also indirectly shows the level of knowledge of the information about TWCB that he obtained thanks to his visits to the Observatory: he knows, in fact, that humans were “born” 80.000 years ago and almost certainly he's aware of how they came into the world. Moreover, Thom, with this sentence is maybe referring also to the way Sages are born, meaning that, even if the probability of appearance of a Sage is uncertain (as we'll see in the next letter), probably during 80.000 years many Sages were born and so it's possible that a part of them was able to reach the Observatory.

Thom ends the letter encouraging the reader who found all the missives to search for the last one, that he would have positioned near the place where he had asked to be buried, having predicted that his days were coming to an end.


As I wryte, the Yeare is now neare upon 1706, and I am sicklie and in poor Condition, and so must tell what little else I can of my Condition;-- all I tell here, I have dredg'd from the dark Voide of my Memorie. I cannot confirm or prove what I argue, but perhaps if some Others like me were to see this, they too would understand, and feel not alone as I so often have.

In my originale Lyfe, I died in the midst of my Beloved's experiment. This Method of which she spoke - of the Transference of Mind into Machine, and from thence into a Human Body -- was a Failure. Yet an instructive one, I believe. For in my last Moments, I Recollect her comforts to me, and a cleare Promise that my death would not be an end, but a beginning.

"There is another Way, Beloved," said she to me, "imperfect, yet possible. Firstly, I will agree to carry out Minerva's experiments, her terrible Gift to the Humans. Yet my purpose will be contrary;-- my purpose will be your immortality! In collecting Samples of the Code in the Human's blood, I will add my own Augmentations;- Samples of your Code, transfigured in such a way that when the proper Pieces come together, it may further transfigure the Zygote of a newly conceived Child. In this Way, you shall be reborn, again and again throughout the Ages. With luck, this recessive Recurrence shall never die out, but travell on like a Raft downstream along the Tide of Inheritance."

I was dying as she spoke, there in my Beloved's Arms, but I understood her Meaning well. "Look for me, Beloved! Your Death will not be in Vain. For I WILL be with you again. Entomb'd. Lying in waite! Ready to emerge again when the Tyme is ryght!" She then pierced me through the Heart, thus ending my Lyfe. How trulie bizzarre it is;-- that I can claim to have Memorie of my own death is a Ludicrous idea. And yet I know that it happen'd, and that I now live again, many Centuries from that Tyme, waiting for the final piece of this Riddle to reveal itself.. yet how this will be, I cannot say.

Thus, to any and all who have read this and understood little;-- be not upset. For there is more Mysterie than Sense in the World, and our only Purpose is to endure it! -- T.K. 1706

Thom ends his writings with a bang with a long final letter full of details. It's 1706 and with this Thom confirms he wrote all his letters in the same year (since he mentioned 1706 also in the first letter), probably during the same period, which leads us to suppose that the letters were scattered across the Caribbean almost certainly after the death of our Sage, probably happened in 1706 too.

It's a final letter filled with explanations and cross references to the previous ones. Thom renews the aim of the letters as a help instrument for other Sages who could feel alone or be distanced from the “calmer Shores of Sanitie”, as mentioned in the first letter, but this is just the beginning because immediately after Thom talks about the last memory of his letters, which is also the last memory of his life as Aita.

Thom says that Aita died during the experiment of his beloved Juno (once again the term characterizing the two lovebirds is back). Juno's experiment, as narrated in the 13th letter, consisted in the method of transcendence, in other words the transfer of the conscience, firstly from the body of TWCB to some machines and then from these machines to the body of a human. According to Aita's memories, the experiment was a failure. The direct reference is to the fifth method of salvation shown in AC3, where we saw Juno and Aita talking and the latter voluntarily undergoing what, in the meantime, was narrated to Desmond by Juno. The way I interpreted the event in the article about the methods, before Black Flag came out, concerned the bioengineering and the attempt to modify the bodies of TWCB through other machines. That was wrong after all, and maybe I was influenced by the AC3 guide that described it exactly in that way. In fact Juno, during the explanation of the methods, refers to a poisoned world (exactly like in the 13th letter - "there is a chance we might inure our Bodies to the chilling Worlde, the poison'd Atmosphere"), to the idea of changing what TWCB “were” and to the fact that Aita was prisoner of the machines, but the concept was completely different.

The moment of Aita's killing (by XCVii007r1)

The fifth method, then, the one for which Aita volunteered, was actually a first and maybe more advanced but disastrous version of the sixth method. In both cases, indeed, the project was based on the transfer of TWCB's mind from their body to an external vessel. The idea behind the fifth method was to transfer the conscience to the machines and then to the body of the instruments of TWCB, in other words the humans, while the sixth method took into account the “simple” transfer of conscience to machines that were able to last. In particular the mentioned machines for both the methods are different: while in the fifth method, according to Juno's idea in the thirteenth letter, the machines are mechanical bodies, in the sixth method they're the monoliths showed in the pertaining video or, as often interpreted, in the whole Grand Temple. In any case the fifth method obtains a primary role that didn't have before, remaining anyway in line with what Juno said in AC3 (maybe a bit less with the guide). Aita volunteers (incited by Juno, so he's not exactly a volunteer...) for this method, conceived by his wife in the letter 13. His conscience is transferred from his body to the machines and from the machines to human body, but, as Juno states during the explanation of the fifth method, Aita – or better his conscience - "was made a prisoner of the machines",
Tinia's injection
meaning that the transfer took place in the human vessel ("the body might survive"), but meanwhile his mind / conscience became "brittle to the touch" and this fact marked the failure of the fifth method. This also gives an answer – with the wisdom of hindsight – to the doubt of some fans who had hypothesized a weak design for the character of Aita showed in the explanation of the fifth method, who appeared identical to the other humans who were present in the other explanations: the Aita showed in the video is already the human vessel of his conscience from the beginning of the video or maybe, more likely, the moment in which his conscience is transferred in the human body is when we see Tinia injecting him with something using a mysterious syringe.

Aita asks Juno to put
an end to his suffering
As Juno tells Desmond, Aita asks her to put an end to his pain, but for months Juno tries in vain to save him. While in the explanation of the fifth method the following step is the killing of Aita, the last of Thom's letters informs us of some unknown details. Juno, before killing her husband and releasing him from his pain, proves that she has found a way to save him. Juno must consent to Minerva's idea (explained in letter 8) about the genetic transmission of knowledge to obtain DNA samples to manipulate (so this isn't a one-sided act of TWCB in which they don't listen to Juno, as it might seem reading only the eighth letter). At this point she will be able to add to the human DNA some modified samples of Aita's DNA, so that, under the right (unspecified) conditions, when a child is conceived, the zygote changes itself bringing with it Aita's traits and memories.

I make the nth digression about the Italian translation for this letter too because unfortunately it's important (at least for the hardcore fans of the plot). Unlike what I've written above, Juno's words in Italian are "(...) so that, when all the pieces come together, I'll be able to modify the genetic heritage of a fetus". While in the original version it is said that the experiment will work every time, in case that all the conditions occur, in the Italian version Juno states that she'll modify (generically) the genetic heritage of a (generic) fetus. The Italian version seems to imply that Juno modifies a fetus every time to generate a Sage.

Getting back to the matter, Juno speaks of a recessive recurrence (a term that isn't even present in the Italian version) – and so not a dominant one – highlighting the low chance for this event to happen and for this reason she says a bit of luck will be needed so that this modification of the human genome doesn't get lost over time. This is the real birth of the Sages and, considering their presence in the present day too, it seems Juno was lucky enough.

The "vessel" in which Juno is sealed
The last sentence pronounced by Juno is as simple as devilish. By saying it, indeed, she gives Aita and his future clones the task of looking for her, with the intent of being reunited. But this isn't enough, because Juno, before killing her husband freeing him from the pain, says she'll wait entombed, ready to emerge. This means that, soon after the failure of the fifth method, Juno already had in mind her millenarian plan (or at least a part of it), everything spiced with the experiment of the Sages and their diffusion in the world. In spite of who said that Juno's plan couldn't be so complex as instead supposed after AC3.

This concludes the analysis of the letters, but there's still something else to see about the “Sages”. Once all the letters are recovered, the entry dedicated to them in the Animus database is updated, giving a clearer explanation to the players who didn't make all the connections:


Abstergo's archives contain a few references to men called "The Sage" or "A Sage", but they are few and far between. Each citing seems to refer to a different person living in a vastly different time and location. The earliest example was found on a Sumerian clay tablet in cuneiform script, while the latest survives only as a footnote in one of Laureano Torres's own journals, dated January 1704. In all -- according to Abstergo's existing research, seven different "Sages" seem to have graced the world's stage in the past twelve hundred years. But the real number is likely higher.

Perhaps, the strangest aspect connecting each of these various sightings is the fact that, in every case, visual descriptions of each Sage are remarkably similar. So similar, in fact, that one wouldn't be faulted for assuming they were talking about a single, immortal man. However, in two of the seven citations, explicit mention is made of their death and burial. Are we therefore dealing with some bizarre form of reincarnation? Or some simpler explanation that eludes us at present? More research is required.

(following the recovery of the 20 letters):

Thanks in large part to a series of letters acquired through the efforts of our researchers, we now have some sense of what constitutes a "Sage".

It appears that such a person, always a man, is the result of a bizarre experiment perpetrated by "Juno", one of the luminaries of the so-called "First Civilization", with the aid of her husband "Aita". Apparently using her husband's DNA as a base, Juno manipulated this genetic material to create a program that she inserted as "junk DNA" into the Human genome.

Though harmless by all appearances, this program could -- under the right circumstances -- activate suddenly during the conception of a human child and, quite literally, reconfigure itself into the genome of her husband. In this way, a near perfect replica or clone of this man's personality and intelligence, with all its memories intact, would appear in lieu of the actual child that should have resulted from this union.

It is unknown at this point why Juno should have wanted her husband's likeness to continually recur throughout the centuries and millennia, especially in light of the First Civilization's swift extinction barely 100 years after Juno and her kind walked the earth. Yet it remains a sobering fact that there is a very high probability that one such replica of this "Aita" is alive and walking the earth at this very moment.

Ha ha ha........... just no
This entry finally gives an answer to the initial question: who are the Sages and why are they so important, also in the present day?

To sum up, the Sage, who always appears as a man (and not like in the Italian version "it's just a single man", hinting that the Sage is always the same man in all the ages), is the outcome of Juno's experiment with Aita's DNA. As we saw a while ago, under the pretext of consenting to Minerva's project, Juno inserted her husband's DNA into one or more humans as a "Junk DNA". The term "junk DNA" (missing in the Italian version), incidentally, was mainly introduced in the 1960s by the press to indicate those parts of DNA that don't have an identifiable function. After all, it was possible for Minerva to get these test subjects back and find out what Aita's wife perpetrated.

In any case, Juno's experiment provided that, under certain circumstances, the zygote of a newly conceived child would have reconfigured itself into the genome of Aita, giving the baby his same somatic traits and memories. The experiment has a probabilistic nature, because it implies that the reconfiguration would have occurred under the right circumstances, even if these aren't detailed. Moreover, since it's a recessive recurrence, the probability of the birth of Sage was already low from the beginning, during the war period of time in which these memories occurred. This very low chance is the reason why the Sages were always very rare to find, but I need to make an observation: Abstergo database recorded the presence of seven confirmed sages in the last 1200 years (unfortunately the Italian version says "during the last twelve thousand years"), but the person who wrote the document says that probably there were more of them. This is plausible because, even if the chance is very low, as the population progressively grew during the centuries, the number of Sages statistically increased too. To make a simple example: if the chance is 1%, out of a population of 100 people only a sage is born, out of a population of 1.000 people 10 sages are born, out of 10.000 people 100 sages are born and so on.

This is obviously a very simplified example and probably it isn't appropriate to explain the intent of a superior entity equipped with very advanced technology for a sci-fi experiment, but at least it should give an idea of the fact that, as the worldwide population grows, over the years probably the appearances of one or more Sages increased. The reason why it is mentioned more than once that the Sages didn't appear sometimes for more than two centuries can probably be attributed to the fate and to the recessiveness of the recurrence. Moreover, since we're talking about “confirmed” Sages, which means spotted by Assassins or Templars, many Sages might not have been “officialized” because they were never found or maybe because they died young or for whatever other reason they might have passed unnoticed.

"Oh... she who lies in wait. I had
hoped to find her, to see her again.
To open the door of the temple and hear
her speak my name once more. Aita..."
Therefore every Sage comes in the world with the physical appearance of Aita (from childhood to adulthood), but, as we saw in Thom's letters, that are the only clue we have to know what a Sage thinks, he's born and grows up as a normal kid, influenced by the period he lives in. Almost normal, actually: Aita's memories, although unintelligible, are present in the Sage since the beginning. It's clear from Thom's words, "My love" and "My beloved", obviously unusual for a 1-year old kid, but a clear reference to Aita's and Juno's relationship to the point that Thom writes that his parents considered those words a good omen, but they wouldn't have been so happy knowing their true meaning (and now we know why). The influence of Aita's memories doesn't concern only the Sage's thoughts, but also his behavior, especially at a very early age when he has little self-awareness. We saw, indeed, how young Thom gesticulated in a strange way drawing symbols (glyphs?), he never cried and he called his parents by their first names.

Already at an early age the Sage starts to visualize Aita's “natural memories”, or reveries, according to Thom's words. The effect of these reveries is very particular on the Sage, who is a fully-fledged human with a double set of memories, one of which belongs no less than a member of TWCB. So we are, as already explained briefly, in front of a sort of bleeding effect which is stronger than all the others seen before: while the one we saw up until now was caused by a high but limited number of memories generated by the sessions in the Animus, the Sage is continually subjected (at least since the age of 4 according to Thom) to Aita's natural memories for his whole life. So it's normal to suppose that this kind of situation can lead to madness and to a multiple personality disorder, as happened, for example, with Subject 16, but probably at a higher level.

In support of what I wrote, you can notice that both Thom and Roberts and John refer more than once to Juno or to themselves as they really were Aita. The difference between the three concerning the reaction to the images / memories is explained to us by Darby McDevitt himself on Twitter: while Thom, as we have seen, has sought throughout his life to fight and understand the memories, Roberts delighted in them and John was overtaken by them.

As for the risk of madness, on the other hand, just see the behavior of John from I.T. whenever things are even slightly different from what he expects, especially in the present day ending of AC4. It is probably to avoid these kind of situations that Thom refers to his letters as a tool to help other Sages like him, so that they don't fall back into madness:

Yet there is such an amount of Strangeness in my Blood it bears Mention, with the Wish that a better Understanding may come from my Situation;- and with the Hope that, if there be any others in the Worlde who suffer the same Perturbations of Minde as I have since Birth, they might find in me a kindred Soul;- and a friendly Voice to guide them to the calmer Shores of Sanitie

I cannot confirm or prove what I argue, but perhaps if some Others like me were to see this, they too would understand, and feel not alone as I so often have.

So here's why, in the comment to the first letter, I explained briefly that the translation "hoping that my voice may sooth his anxiety " doesn't express what Thom wanted to say. Our Sage, sharing the mind with Aita, and also due to experience, knows the risk of the loss of mental lucidity resulting from the presence of the double soul in the Sage.

So all the Sages have a set of standard starting physical and psychological characteristics, but also a human part, and they act depending on the world around them. This means that, even if at first they have the same origin, life may lead them to completely different conclusions. Now that we know how they are born, grow and what they think, we can deal with the above-mentioned conclusions of the other Sages we know. But this is, as they say, another story and we'll soon examine it in the continuation of this article.

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A new beginning - part1

Six we tried in succession