- "Rot in hell, Thomas."
- ―Tesla on Thomas Edison, before firing his particle beam weapon.[src]
Nikola Tesla (1856 – Unknown) was a Serbian American inventor, and a mechanical and electrical engineer. He was one of the most important contributors to the birth of commercial electricity. Tesla planned to create a worldwide network that was able to transmit information and electricity to anywhere on the planet. The knowledge needed for this plan came from an Apple of Eden he had acquired.
Acquiring the Apple of Eden
In 1874, Tesla fled to Tomingaj, near the municipality of Gračac, in order to avoid being drafted into the army. While there, he spent much of his time exploring the wilderness and the surrounding mountains; it was here that he found an Apple of Eden.
The Templars however, most prominently Thomas Edison – Tesla's former employer – opposed his ideas, as they would be a serious impediment to the Templar goals and Edison's own ideals. To this end, Edison demonstrated a series of experiments, such as the electrocution of a circus elephant that he released, as proof of Tesla's power being dangerous, causing public disapproval towards Tesla's invention. Along with his smear campaign, Edison also influenced his fellow Templar J.P. Morgan to cut funding for Tesla's famous Wardenclyffe Tower. In the following months, Tesla's Apple of Eden seemingly disappeared from his lab, along with some of his designs.
Working with the Assassins
We know what they have done to your lab, to your career. It may be too late to set things right, but you can help prevent something far worse. [...] We do not ask you to risk your life, just that, when the time comes, you use your electricity to destroy the object.
Regardless of your decision, know that we admire your work greatly and will bear you no ill will.
We respect your freedom above all else."
- ―A letter to Tesla from the Assassins.[src]
In 1908, the Assassins contacted Tesla and enlisted his help in destroying a Templar facility in Tunguska which housed a copied Tesla coil, and was also the location where the Imperial Sceptre of Russia – one of the Staves of Eden – was located, using his powerful particle beam weapon.
While a team of Russian Assassins led by Nikolai Orelov infiltrated the facility to retrieve the Staff of Eden, Tesla fired his machine from America, while he also expressed his resentment of Edison just prior. However, the Assassins failed to secure the Staff in time, with both the artifact and the Assassins ultimately caught in the explosion.
As a result, a massive super-explosion that became known as the Tunguska explosion erupted, and the facility and the Staff of Eden were destroyed. Nikolai was the only survivor, and a remaining shard of the Staff later came into the possession of Grigori Rasputin.
Working for the Templars
As Tesla's popularity began to dwindle under the Templars' efforts, he lost the rights to several patents and wasted what money he had in elaborate parties where he would reveal his latest inventions. The unbelievable nature of many of these machines, coupled with Tesla's distress over losing the Apple, led the public to see him as little more than a benevolent lunatic.
Officially, Tesla died in poverty in New York in January 1943, his body being discovered by a maid two days after his death from coronary thrombosis. However, by February, Tesla was still well and alive, secretly working in Sweden for the Nazi general and Templar, Gero Kramer. With the knowledge obtained from an Apple of Eden, Tesla created "Die Glocke", a proto-Animus, that the Templars intended to use to find more Pieces of Eden.
- Historically, Tesla's ashes were placed in a spherical golden urn, an object that bore a striking resemblance to the Apple of Eden that influenced Tesla's work in the Assassin's Creed universe.