- "We have a mission for you, one that is of utmost importance to our cause."
- ―Al Mualim to Altaïr after the village's siege.[src]
|Quest for the Chalice|
The Quest for the Chalice was an event that occurred during the year 1190. After the Assassin Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad completed his mission elsewhere, he began his long journey to the Assassin fortress, Alep. As his journey to the fortress was almost drawn to a conclusion, Altaïr came across a small settlement.
Return to AlepEdit
Siege of the villageEdit
Walking the way, Altaïr arrived at the settlement, just a few miles away from Alep. Deciding to stretch a bit, Altaïr took to the rooftops, and after a brief run, he returned to the streets. Here, he made his way to the edge of the town, evading a group of guards as he did so.
Arriving at the far end of the small settlement, Altaïr learned that the city gates were closed. Scouring his surroundings, he spotted the gatekeeper, a man barely standing, half-asleep. Making his way towards him, Altaïr stole the key from the man's pouch, and used it to unlock the gates.
As the Templars has began to lay waste to a village a short distance away from the Assassin citadel of Alep, Altaïr had soon found himself in the midst of a small forest where the sight of fire and smoke omitting from the village had caught his glance.
After trudging through the forest, Altaïr arrived at the edge of the burning town, scattered with debris and rubble. As he searched the area, he spotted a guard from one of the Assassin patrols of Alep, severely injured and barely alive. Altaïr asked him what was happening to the village, and the guard responded with great difficulty that the village had been attacked. When asked who lead the attack, the man simply uttered the name of the Templars.
Before dying, the guard handed Altaïr a sword to protect himself with, weakly asking Altaïr to avenge his men and himself. Taking up the sword, Altaïr made his way through the rubble, and soon came upon members of the Templar order. They quickly spotted Altaïr, and prepared themselves to dispatch the Assassin. Drawing his sword, Altaïr successfully fended all of them off.
As he made his way deeper into the village, he soon found himself on the rooftops, scouting for a way through the burning ruins. There, he spotted a Templar archer, of whom he demanded the reason why the Templars had attacked the village. The archer refused to speak, but after being threatened physically by the Assassin, he revealed their plans. Apparently, the men that had attacked the village were tasked by the Templar Grand Master, Lord Basilisk, to hunt down a member of the Brotherhood that held valuable information. The Assassin proceeded to finish the archer off, before leaving the area.
Continuing to make his way through the village, Altaïr spotted the Captain of the Templar men, who was unaware of the Assassin's presence. Slowly creeping up behind his prey, Altaïr plunged his blade into the man's back, killing him instantly. After the assassination, one of the Assassin soldiers arrived, and instructed Altaïr to come with him immediately to the Assassin Headquarters, for Al Mualim sought his company. Agreeing, Altaïr left the burning village, and proceeded to Alep.
- "Something that powerful must be kept away from the dealings of men. Altaïr, find it. Bring it here."
- ―Al Mualim telling Altaïr of the task.[src]
Arriving at the fortress of Alep, Altaïr immediately made his way to Al Mualim's study. Welcoming back his pupil, Al Mualim told Altaïr of their recent failure to protect one of their own from falling into Templar hands. He then told Altaïr to come closer, and quietly spoke of a legendary artifact that the Templars also wished to obtain. This relic, known as the Chalice, was said to be able to unite the land under one banner. Al Mualim then instructed Altaïr to obtain the Chalice before the Templars could find and abuse it.
The Rafiq's challengeEdit
- Altaïr: "Old man, I have a message for you: A cat's dream is filled with mice."
- Man: "Not here, you fool! Ladies, you must excuse me!"
- ―Altaïr, upon meeting his contact in Damascus
Arriving at the city of Damascus, Altaïr located one of the Assassins' rafiqs, who was selling clothes and rugs to the citizens of the district. Altaïr approached him, and uttered out an irrelevant statement, which acted as the Assassins' password. The man reprimanded Altaïr for his improper timing, before leaving his small stand and returning to the bureau.
Inside the bureau, the rafiq began his tirade, stating that Altaïr acted ridiculously and stupidly upon their first meeting, and also reprimanded him for not showing any respect to those like him, which led him to doubt the Assassin's abilities. He then gave Altaïr a task, a challenge for the Assassin in order to gain the information he sought. He required him to assassinate one of their enemies by the large gate within the city. He further instructed him to meet him at the end of the street once the deed was done, and report his success.
After receiving his new orders, Altaïr made his way out of the bureau and into the city to begin his search for the man pointed out by the rafiq. After scouring the city thoroughly, Altaïr located the man he was tasked to kill, and assassinated him with his Hidden Blade. Leaving the area before the guards could catch up to him, Altaïr fled to the rooftops, where he met up with the rafiq. Impressed, the rafiq instructed him to meet him inside the bureau, to discuss Altaïr's initial mission.
- Tamir: "My beautiful carpets! The Venetian Silverware! All gone!"
- Altaïr: "Surely, you can buy them back...."
- Tamir: "What....Who's there!?"
- —Tamir and Altaïr's initial meeting
Within the bureau, Altaïr told the rafiq of his primary task to find the artifact known as the Chalice. The rafiq expected as much, for Altaïr was not the first man sent by Al Mualim to find the artifact. Rafiq told him of a merchant named Tamir who lived in Damascus, and had connections with the Templars. He told him the location of his house, which lay somewhere in the district, but also warned him of the danger in invading his home, for it was heavily guarded. Altaïr suspected that there was a man who held information regarding a way in, to which the rafiq replied with glee that there was indeed a man who knew of such way.
The rafiq told Altaïr of a man named Misbah, a merchant who had good ties with Tamir. He told him to locate Misbah and question him for a way in. Altaïr complied to this, and quickly left the bureau to scour the city for Misbah. After a thorough search, Altaïr managed to locate Misbah, who had been taking a quick stroll around the city. Making his way from the rooftops to the ground, Altaïr confronted Misbah, and demanded information for a way into Tamir's residence. After Misbah denied any knowledge, Altaïr began to forcibly interrogate him.
As he did so, however, the city guards were alerted of the Assassin's presence, and proceeded to apprehend him. Altaïr drew his sword in order to fight back against the guards. With the Assassin occupied, Misbah quickly fled the scene and hid himself upon the rooftops. Upon killing the guards, Altaïr made his way to the rooftops, to search for his target. Arriving at the edge of a tall building, Altaïr located Misbah, who had hidden right above him. As Misbah tried to flee across a narrow beam, the structure fell apart, causing the roof and the beam to break and fall, leaving him hanging from a rope. Altaïr saw an opportunity, and offered Misbah his assistance in exchange for the information he needed.
Misbah at first continued to deny any knowledge of a way in, but with his grip slipping, he was forced to cooperate. He denied a definite way in, but told him of the merchant's stock of oil, kept in barrels on the small terrace located at the top of his home. Misbah told him to light the barrels and flush Tamir out of his home. After revealing what he knew, he begged Altaïr for assistance, but the Assassin refused to comply, leaving Misbah to his fate.
After learning of a way to get close to Tamir, Altaïr made his way to the merchant's home through the rooftops. Arriving at the terrace atop the merchant's home, Altaïr located a small box of fire torches, much to his convenience. Using these torches, the Assassin lit the merchant's house on fire, effectively luring Tamir out of his house. Leaving the burning building, Tamir angrily demanded the guards to put out the fire before it swallowed his home. As Tamir grieved over his belongings, Altaïr made his appearance, and stood before him. Threatened by the Assassin, Tamir had no choice but to answer his questions.
He told Altaïr of an ancient temple in the midst of the desert, where the Chalice was located. He continued and told Altaïr that, in order to gain access into the temple, he needed three keys, one of which belonged to a dancer Tamir knew of, a woman named Fajera who thought herself a butterfly. After revealing what he knew, Tamir demanded that Altaïr let him go, but the Assassin only replied by putting his blade through the merchant's throat. The guards arrived at the scene too late, and were only greeted by the sight of Tamir's dead body. Altaïr, after dispatching the guards, returned to the rafiq to tell him what intel he had acquired on his mission.
Returning to the bureau, Altaïr consulted with the rafiq, and asked him if he knew of a dancer named Fajera. The rafiq let out a brief chuckle, saying that Tamir had a good sense of humor, before saying that Fajera was a circus dancer of the circus near the district. With the rafiq pointing the way to the circus, Altaïr left the bureau in order to confront the woman.
Arriving at the circus tent, Altaïr confronted Fajera, who claimed that her cards foresaw the coming of the Assassin. Altaïr demanded an answer from her, asking if she held with her the key to the temple, but she refused to comply. She then called the attention of one of her circus friends, a brute named Badr. Altaïr told the towering man to step aside, but the brute refused to cooperate, and abruptly began a fight, allowing Fajera to leave the tent. Despite Altaïr's size disadvantage, he was able to outsmart the brute, and managed to defeat him even as the tent began to fall and cave around them.
Altaïr left the tent before it collapsed, leaving Badr under the rubble. Altaïr then proceeded to chase down Fajera, who was fleeing the district. He crossed a difficult path, evading civilians throwing rocks and guards pursuing him. After a long chase, Fajera crossed a crumbling bridge and managed to make it through before it collapsed, leaving Altaïr behind. She continued to taunt the Assassin as the gates closed behind her. Using the tool given to him by the rafiq, Altaïr made his way across to the other side of the bridge, and scaled up to the buildings in order to pass the gate.Locating Fajera by a well, Altaïr confronted the dancer, demanding the key to the temple. Fajera, impressed by the Assassin's actions, gladly gave the key to him. Altaïr was confused by her actions, thus Fajera explained that she had actually been testing Altaïr. She continued that, through her cards, she had foreseen his coming, and thought that she had best prepare herself in aiding the Assassin. She then requested Altaïr to dispose of a man named Alaat, who was within a bathhouse not too far from where they were.
Altaïr asked how he was to find a way inside a bathhouse, to which Fajera replied that there was a way through some old sewer tunnels beneath Damascus. Fajera pointed Altaïr the way to the entrance of the sewer. Bidding Altaïr good luck, Fajera left Altaïr to his task, and the Assassin made his way to the sewer. After passing through the complicated structure of the sewers, Altaïr found the entrance to the bathhouse. There, he found Alaat, resting within the warm waters. Surprised by the Assassin's sudden appearance, Alaat called out a desperate cry for help, but these were to be his last words, as the Assassin plunged his blade into the man, killing him.
As the guards arrived, Altaïr drew his sword, and repelled their attacks. The Assassin fled and met up with Fajera, whom he reported to. As a way of saying thank you, Fajera told Altaïr of the location of another key holder, within the city of Tyre.
Altaïr arrived at Tyre, and recollected on his past endeavors in this city. The only difference he noticed was the increase of guards, which led him to make his way through the city on the rooftops. He first decided to meet up with the rafiq of Tyre, Hamid. After a long travel through the city, and a brief civilian conflict, Altaïr managed to locate Hamid, who was spying on the city hospital from afar.
Hamid informed him that a man named Roland Napule was keeping the key holder captive within his own hospital. He also remarked that one of his men who had tried to gain entrance into the Hospital, but had never returned. When asked for a way in, Hamid told him of the sewer system that lay beneath the city, that provided a way into the hospital. By stealing the key of the keeper, who was stationed nearby, Altaïr managed to get inside the locked sewer.
As he progressed through the old passageways, Altaïr encountered Templar guards who were patrolling the area. After dispatching them, Altaïr presumed that Roland knew of the secret entrance, for he had posted guards all across the sewers.
The Templar HospitalEdit
- Altaïr: "End of the road, Templar!"
- Roland: "I'll see you in hell, Assassin!"
- ―Roland's last words to Altaïr
Making his way through the passageway, Altaïr managed to locate Roland, who was interrogating the key holder, and demanding the old man for the key. As he did, his guards caught sight of the Assassin, and drew their weapons in order to combat Altaïr. The Assassin, with his sword in hand, successfully fought off the Templar men. Roland, who tried to escape, met his end at the hands of the Assassin. Altaïr then returned to the first chamber and confronted the prisoner.
Altaïr introduced himself as a member of the Assassins, and asked if he could have the key to the Temple. The man doubted the Assassin's appearance, and presumed that he was a Templar. The man wanted proof that he was of the Assassin Order, but Altaïr remarked that he had none. The man, seeing a way to prove Altaïr's allegiance, asked for his left hand. Seeing the hidden blade mounted on the Assassin's wrist, the man knew where Altaïr's loyalty lay.
The man then handed Altaïr the key to the temple, and as Altaïr thanked him, the man revealed that the final key was in the possession of Lord Basilisk himself, whom he had last seen in the city of Jerusalem. After freeing the man, Altaïr bid him farewell and made his way to Jerusalem, in order to confront Basilisk.
The City GardensEdit
- Altaïr: "Tell me where the king is having his party this evening."
- Ayman: "I don't have to tell you anything, begone!"
- Altaïr: "I'm not a Djinn for you to order around."
- —Altaïr and Ayman's exchange of words at the gardens of Jerusalem
Altaïr arrived at the bureau in Jerusalem, and met up with the local rafiq, Kadar, asking him where he could find Lord Basilisk. Kadar remarked that the man's fierceness and feral bravado in battle had earned him the trust of the King, meaning Basilisk was frequently idling in the King's audience. As the Assassin pondered over a way to get closer to his target, Kadar informed him of an upcoming party hosted by the King himself, which meant that he would be sending invitations to some of the citizens. In order to locate the location of the party, Altaïr needed to eavesdrop on some citizens.
Kadar then told Altaïr of the city gardens located in Jerusalem, where gossip was often exchanged. Learning the location, Altaïr headed off to the gardens. After dealing with the city guards, and crossing the rooftops of Jerusalem, Altaïr managed to make his way into the garden, which was filled with people. After listening in on a few conversations, he eventually caught information regarding one of the king's guests. One man made mention of someone named Ayman, who had been invited to the king's party. Based on the civilian's words, Ayman was walking nearby, on the other side of the gardens.
Learning what he needed, Altaïr crossed the small, curved stream that served as the gap between the two sides of the garden, evading the falling boulders that rolled down the path. Managing to avoid all the obstacles, he began to scour the area, until finally he located and confronted Ayman. The man, who was at first hesitant, eventually cracked, and told Altaïr of the party's location, which was at a villa north of the gardens. Upon gaining this information, Altaïr walked away as if nothing had happened. After making his way out of the gardens, Altaïr arrived at the front of the villa.
Confrontation with BasiliskEdit
- Basilisk: "A challenge, finally!"
- Altaïr: "Not really, Basilisk. I'm not here for you..."
- ―Altaïr and Basilisk, exchanging words at the underground area of the villa
As he inspected the villa, Altaïr noticed that the only way in was through the front entrance, which was guarded by several soldiers. With no other option, he fought his way past the front gate. After handling the guards and navigating through the rooftops of the villa, Altaïr fell through an unstable wooden platform that caused him to plummet down into the building. The guards that were stationed in the building caught sight of him, but were all quickly routed by the Assassin. As he inspected the area, Altaïr made contact with one of the king's men, who also happened to be one of the rafiq's own.
The man told the Assassin of a secret passage that was built for those who needed a concealed way in and out of the villa. He continued, telling Altaïr of an old mechanism that lay somewhere up ahead, which revealed the entrance to the passage after four floor panels were pressed down at the same time. Altaïr told the man that Kadar was looking for him, but he only replied that he could not leave for the time being. The man told Altaïr to assure Kadar that he is safe, and that he would return shortly. After this, the two parted ways, and Altaïr made his way further into the villa.
Seeing the way in from afar, which was submerged in water, Altaïr found a way to activate the mechanism by placing nearby wooden crates upon the four panels. After dispatching the guards and placing all of the crates, Altaïr made his way inside the secret passageway. Upon finding another mechanism, Altaïr needed to use a throwing knifeinorder to activate the structure's trigger. Altaïr eventually arrived at a rotating stone wall at the end of the passageway and, triggering the hidden doorway, came out of the darkness. Here, he caught sight of the man he sought: Lord Basilisk.
Seeing a challenge within the Assassin, Basilisk drew his weapon and prepared to duel Altaïr. The Assassin, on the other hand, was not so eager to fight, as he only sought the key. Regardless, Basilisk engaged the Assassin in combat. Altaïr, barely holding Basilisk off, just managed to climb onto Basilisk's back and steal the key that was wrapped around his neck. The Assassin then fled, leaving Basilisk to watch him escape, and call desperately for the guards.
Into the TowerEdit
As Altaïr set his foot onto the streets of Jerusalem once more, he made his way to the bureau in order to seek out the rafiq. However, he was greeted by the sight of Templars on the verge of murdering the rafiq. The soldiers told him to back off, and as they left, Altaïr came to aid of the rafiq, who was barely alive from his injuries. The man told him of a map that detailed the way to the Temple of the Sand that had been found by one of his men, but had just been taken by the Templars by force. He told the Assassin of their destination, a tall tower located somewhere in Jerusalem. Taking responsibility, Altaïr set off and searched the city for the Templars that had taken the map he needed.Locating the men, he eavesdropped on them from the rooftops as they discussed their next step. One of them decided that it was best to leave the map to the care of the fastest soldier among the three of them, while the other two took care of the Assassin. With a knight taking responsibility over the delivery of the map to the tower, Altaïr quickly fled the scene in order to intercept him. Fending off more of the guards, and evading a few violent civilians, Altaïr managed to catch up with the knight through the rooftops, but proved moments too late, for the knight managed to make his way into the heavily guarded military compound that lead to the tower.
As the knight warned his men of the Assassin's presence, Altaïr managed to sneak inside the compound undetected, but was soon spotted by several crossbowmen from afar. The knight managed to deliver the map as Altaïr made his way across the compound's winding passes, all the while evading the traps set by the soldiers. After dispatching the knight who took the map, and the soldiers with him, Altaïr made his way into the tower. There, he confronted the master of the tower.The master, who was hugely impressed by Altaïr's skills, tried to persuade the Assassin into joining their ranks, stating that they shared the same Creed. Altaïr refused, much to the man's disappointment. Figuring that the Assassin would eventually change his mind, the master left Altaïr alone to deal with his men. After dispatching the guards, Altaïr confronted the master, who asked again if the Assassin was interested in joining, to which Altaïr reconfirmed his answer. Disappointed, the master faced Altaïr in a sword fight. Unable to fend off Altaïr, the master ran outside of the room's balcony in order to escape the area. After dealing with more of the guards, the Assassin pursued the master.
After scaling the side of the tower, and navigating through its complex structure, Altaïr soon found himself inside the tower's dungeon, filled with prisoners. As he scouted the area, he was greeted by the the master's disciple. Mocking the Assassin, the student engaged Altaïr in combat, with some Templar soldiers in tow. After a hard-fought duel, Altaïr was able to defeat the student. By passing through more obstacles, Altaïr met up with the master for a third time, who once again engaged Altaïr in combat. After another brief duel, the master again fled in order to save his life. Altaïr followed, but was hindered by a trap set by the master. This, however, was not enough to stop him, for it did not take him long to bypass the obstacle.
Altaïr confronted the master for a final time in the room that held the map he sought, sealed within a stone casing and covered in glass. After a brief conversation, and a difficult duel, Altaïr managed to defeat the master, and took the map with him. After thoroughly reading the map, the Assassin set off to the Temple of the Sand.
The sands of SyriaEdit
The Temple of the SandEdit
- "Looking for something, assassin? This game of ours is amusing, but it's getting old rather quickly..."
- ―Lord Basilisk, upon meeting Altaïr at the Temple
Leaving Jerusalem, Altaïr made his way through the desert, and managed to locate the entrance to the temple. He navigated through the temple's obstacles, all the while evading the guards that were posted around the area, until he reached the upper areas, quite unscathed. However, he was stopped in his tracks upon finding the entrance barred with a lock that could only be opened after triggering the temple's unique mechanism. After interrogating the local patrol, Altaïr learned how to work the mechanism, and successfully did so. After this, he made his way further into the temple.
Arriving at the upper areas, Altaïr continued to search the temple, dispatching the guards that were patrolling the area as he did so. Through the crumbling structure and the falling debris, Altaïr finally managed to make his way to the Chalice's antechamber. There, he saw the shrine of the Chalice, wrought in gold and placed upon a stone pillar with four bridges stretching in four different directions. Altaïr carefully made his way to the center, cautious of the fire below the bridge.To his surprise, the shrine was empty, devoid of all but dust. Here, a confused Altaïr was greeted by Lord Basilisk, who had grown tired of their recent encounters. Basilisk, feeling he owed the Assassin an explanation, told him of the Chalice's true nature; that it was no artifact, but was in fact a woman, flesh and blood. Mocking the Assassin, Basilisk abruptly departed, ordering his men to finish off Altaïr within the chamber. Cornered, Altaïr fended off the soldiers, careful not to fall into the fire. Successfully doing so, Altaïr was blinded by the dust that enveloped the collapsing chamber, and soon found himself standing outside the rubble of the temple.
As he climbed to his feet, Altaïr was dumbfounded when he saw a powerful sandstorm ravaging the rubble behind him, slowly making its way towards him. The Assassin wasted no time in fleeing the scene, evading the obstacles formed by the fallen rubble of the temple. After a long travel, and some trouble with fleeing guards, Altaïr managed to escape the area. As he recalled what Basilisk had said at the Temple, he remembered him mentioning that he had some business at the city of Tyre. Wasting no time, Altaïr quickly left the area and made his way to the city.
Basilisk in TyreEdit
Upon arriving in Tyre once more, Altaïr was again greeted by Hamid. The assassin asked him if he knew of Basilisk's current location. Hamid told him he was inside one of Tyre's forts, hidden within its solid walls. As he told him of Basilisk's location, Hamid pointed him to an alternate route, which needed Altaïr to navigate through wooden beams and crates all above the deadly waters.
Altaïr was forced to take the route, but before doing so, he was told by Hamid of the existence of two members of the brotherhood imprisoned within the fort. Keeping this in mind, Altaïr made his way across the beams and platforms, all the while evading the water. After a long path, and brief conflicts between guards and patrols, Altaïr was able to make his way deeper into the fort.
As he did, Altaïr discovered the missing agents of Hamid, one trapped where the assassin was, and one trapped at the other side of the fort. After freeing the first agent, Altaïr navigated through the multiple obstacles in order to reach the other agent. After the last agent was set free, Altaïr was able to progress further into the fortress, with the agents' help.
Duel on Lord Basilisk's shipEdit
- "Do you think you can take on an army all by yourself, Assassin?"
- ―A Templar guard to Altaïr.[src]
When Altaïr entered the fortress, he was stopped by Templars who questioned whether he would be able to fight through the Templar army that came between him and Basilisk, though they were quickly dispatched by Altaïr. Altaïr then ventured deeper into the fortress, fighting through the guards that lied in wait and traversed through the obstacles. Altaïr witnessed Adha being dragged down Tyre's ports, she screamed for him, and he ran to help her. However, he was confronted by Basilisk, who challenged him to a battle. Altaïr accepted this and fought long and hard, eventually overpowering Basilisk and killed him. Unknown to Altaïr at the time, the ship which Adha was on was leaving the docks. Altaïr tried to rescue her but did not make it in time; Basilisk's ship was set on fire and Altaïr quickly fled from the scene. Though the ship left the docks and Altaïr watched as it departed from the harbor.