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"Aaah... I've failed you, father... Though, I suppose, in mostly the same way you failed me. We're even, old boy! Chin-chin!"
―Darius talking about his late father while drinking, 1927.[src]

Darius Gift was a member of the British Rite of the Templar Order. After the death of his father Thaddeus Gift in 1927, he was sent to Shanghai to make contact with the Templar Rite in the city, soon finding himself mixed up with the mysterious and enigmatic Black Cross.

Biography

Early life

A member of a British Templar family from Knightsbridge, active since the 12th century, Darius was born to Thaddeus Gift. In February 1927, Thaddeus was killed by the Black Cross for stealing from his fellow Templars and using their contacts to embezzle money, although Darius himself did not know the identity of the killer.[1]

Thaddeus' corruption damaged the Gift family's reputation, and it was discovered that he held many debts, leading to Darius losing a university position and descending into poverty. Darius and his fellow Templar Ferris were the only people present at Thaddeus' funeral at the Temple Church. After the ceremony, Ferris charged Darius with delivering a package to Chiang Kai-shek in the hopes of convincing him to join the Shanghai Rite of the Templar Order, presumably so as to ease tensions between the Templar rites. As a reward, he would be formally inducted into the Templar Order and be given access to whichever university he wanted.[1]

Delivering the package

While traveling to Shanghai, Darius followed the instructions given by never inspecting the contents of the package once. While waiting for an associate to take him to Chiang in the Zhejiang province, he was seduced by inside a bar by a prostitute who called herself "Roo", only for her to steal the package as he looked away. Following her outside, he was attacked by a group of men, before being rescued by the Black Cross. After having been rescued by the Black Cross, they exchanged pleasantries, and the Black Cross promised to retrieve the absent package for Darius, as he was ordered to offer aid directly by the Nine. Later, Darius amused himself with a drink. While he walked past a theatre, he spotted the same woman, Roo, in a movie poster.[1]

Darius arrived at the local movie production studio, seeking out Roo. He managed to sneak his way on to set, where she was performing. He confronted her in her dressing room, pleading for the whereabouts of the box, but she informed him that it had already been sold on. At this point, her husband Zhang Damin entered and knocked Darius out. Later, while the Nationalist Army approached Shanghai, Darius was trapped in the boot of a car, but was rescued by Roo herself who knocked out her husband. She revealed that she had removed the item inside the box, and that it was now empty.[1]

Revenge

Durning the riots in Shanghai, Darius and Roo found shelter in a temple, where they professed their mutual love and discussed the contents of the box. Inside, they discovered a severed finger with a Templar ring and a letter that revealed that the Nine had ordered the killing of Darius' father. While the ring was to offer a position of Grand Master to Chiang Kai-shek, Thaddeus' finger was a reminder of the fate of those who dared to betray the Order. Distraught by the revelation, Darius realized that he was nothing more than a messenger for his fellow Templars.[1]

Sent by Du Yuesheng, a Chinese killer entered the temple to kill Gift and injured the two lovers. However, they were saved by the timely arrival of the Black Cross, who eliminated the gangster before he could finish the job. Seeking vengeance on his father's killer, Darius immediately fired a gun into the back of the Black Cross. Despite Bolden's protests that he executed Thaddeus for the Order, Darius fired multiple shots into him and the Black Cross stumbled and fell off a ledge.[1]

References