In 1527, after she had visited her mother, Maria returned to Professor Bombastus' lab in Basel, and found him with a stranger. Bombastus introduced the man as Giovanni Borgia, who greeted her graciously.
Giovanni then returned to asking Bombastus questions while Maria listened, though she was unable to follow the conversation, as the two spoke mainly in riddles.
Finally, Giovanni demanded that Bombastus read the Book to get the answers he needed, but Bombastus confessed that the Book was incomplete, and that he would need "the other half." Not knowing where it was, the Professor offered Giovanni the help of Maria.
Maria and Giovanni spent a week in the university library researching the Book, which they found to be a journal of the French alchemist, Nicolas Flamel, based on the teachings of Abraham of Würzburg. They learned that Abraham had divided his knowledge into two manuscripts: "True Magic" and "Divine Science." With that, the two of them decided to travel to Paris.
- "It is not proper for an unmarried woman to travel alone with a stranger, not to mention dangerous, but I am excited to go to France."
- ―Maria, upon departing for France.[src]
Maria and Giovanni traveled first to Besançon, where they joined up with a group of merchants bound for Paris. They shared many thoughts along the way, until they reached their destination.
After Giovanni secured permission for them, the two went to the Louvre, where they found Flamel's last will and testament, which said his wife's nephew had inherited a grimoire. Unfortunately, Flamel's nephew had died a long time ago, thus they began searching for living relatives. Though it took a few days, Maria found one of the nephew's descendants, and Giovanni insisted that they visit him in the morning.
They left the royal library and continued to talk along the way back to their hostel. However, in the city, they walked into an ambush set by brigands. Giovanni quickly dispatched all of the assailants, much to Maria's amazement.
The next morning, Maria followed Giovanni to the house of the man they sought. Though reluctant at first, the old man told them that his cousin, Jacques Henri, had inherited the book. They found Henri, and learned that he didn't care about the book, and agreed to sell it to them. They returned to the hostel and studied the book, which detailed ancient Hermetic practices, symbols and numbers.
That night, the two of them went to Cimetière des innocents, to "prove or disprove a rumor," as Giovanni put it. The two entered a narrow crypt, where they found Nicholas Flamel's tomb. Giovanni removed the tomb lid, and both discovered that his and his wife's tombs were empty.
- "As we approach the city, Giovanni becomes distant, haunted by reveries. What does he expect to find in Troyes?"
- ―Maria observing her traveling companion.[src]
Maria and Giovanni prepared to return to Basel, but Giovanni insisted that they visit the city of Troyes on the way back. In Troyes, he rented a single room for them both, insisting that it was for Maria's own protection, and remaining by the window vigilantly the entire night.
The next morning, the two of them went out for a tour of the city. They passed by the cathedral and market, where Maria lost sight of Giovanni. She was then approached by a stranger, who asked her peculiar questions. Just then, Giovanni killed the man, and pulled Maria away. When they stopped running, a furious Giovanni asked her why she had been "conspiring with the Viper." However, his fury melted when she began to cry, and the two of them kissed.
While Giovanni confessed to killing the man, the pair escaped Troyes through streets and alleyways. He showed Maria a sealed letter that he had taken from the man, which explained their quest, and indicated that someone had betrayed them.
After they scaled the city wall, the two hid from Templars who were on the hunt for them. After crossing a river, they were discovered by three horsemen, though these were all quickly routed by Giovanni. The two then continued towards Basel.
Maria and Giovanni eventually returned to Basel, careful not to draw attention to themselves. At Maria's suggestion, the two went to the house of Ivan, a trusted colleague of Maria. His wife Lara invited them in while they waited for her husband to return.
Eventually, Ivan returned home, and informed Maria that Professor Bombastus had gone mad, and had insulted all of the physicians in the university. Giovanni and Maria set out to search for him, and found Bombastus in front of the Münster throwing books into a bonfire.
Giovanni pulled him away, but not before he threw one last book in the fire. The two then brought the insane professor to Ivan's house, where Lara agreed to take care of him. In the morning, however, they discovered that Bombastus was nowhere to be found, though Giovanni was convinced that "there is nothing anyone can do for him."
Before they left Basel, Maria and Giovanni broke into Bombastus' laboratory, which was in shambles. Giovanni unlocked a secret compartment, and took the first half of the Book.
- Giovanni: "We must go to this place, Maria. I know there is something there. I know it! Trust me!"
- Maria: "I always have. And look where it has gotten me!"
- ―Maria teasing Giovanni as they discuss the temple.[src]
Years later, Giovanni showed Maria, now his wife, a crumpled map that led to a temple discovered by a member of his Order long ago. He convinced her that there was something in the temple, and that they needed to find it.
Maria agreed, and they both went to Rome, and to the entrance of the catacombs. Giovanni helped her down, and they passed through several rooms and tunnels. Giovanni stopped in front of a wall, and pushed at some loose bricks until it opened to a circular room. After he rearranged some more bricks, a door opened to the next chamber.
When they entered, light illuminated the walls and formed patterns and glyphs. Giovanni then dropped unconscious. Alarmed, Maria knelt beside him, but when his eyes suddenly opened, she saw that her husband's face had been altered, and he spoke in a distant, unfamiliar voice, calling himself "Consus, the Erudite God."
Personality and characteristicsEdit
Maria was a driven, intellectual young woman, who Bombastus once described as his "most trustworthy assistant." She was also very observant, easily reading the Professor's suspicious behavior when he discussed the Philosopher's Stone with Giovanni. As she saw fit, however, she feigned ignorance and remained silent on the matter.
Though she consciously thought of acting properly as a woman, Maria also had moments of carefree impertinence, speaking as an equal beside Bombastus, and excitedly traveling alone with Giovanni, despite being unmarried at the time.
- "Never in my life have I felt so passionate about anyone. I would follow this man to Hell!"
- ―Maria speaking of Giovanni.[src]
Even early on during their travels, Maria doted on Giovanni, evidently trusting him with her life. Despite being fearful of entering the Cimetière des innocents crypt in Paris, she nevertheless followed him, insisting that they were "as one in this."
She at first feared Giovanni after discovering his identity as an Assassin, but this did not last long, as she realized that the one act of murder she had witnessed did not compare to the many months of kindness she had experienced from him.
Even years later, after Maria had married Giovanni, she continued to fully support him in his missions, and easily consented to travel into the Pythagorean temple. However, she also at one point frowned upon his efforts of discovering the secrets of the Crystal Skull, disapproving of the time he spent studying it.
- Maria and Giovanni share the names of Ezio's parents, Maria and Giovanni Auditore da Firenze.
- Maria had at least two sisters, as well as a step-father.
- Maria thought of her mother often, even throughout her travels to Paris.
- Maria's memories were extracted from the genetic memory of one of her descendants by Abstergo Industries, and were relived as part of Project Legacy in 2012.