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NOTE: This blog is not yet finished and is likely inaccurate on certain details. This merely reflects my current interpretation of the ending.
- Desmond: "I'm tired of it. All the cryptic warnings. The threats. Just tell us what you want!"
- William: "But they are... "We saw the Nephilim there. We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them." Imagine trying to explain all of this to a two year old. To a grasshopper. When they said the will of the gods was unknowable - they meant it. Literally."
- ―Desmond and William Miles talking about the First Civilization.[src]
By now, every Assassin's Creed fan has seen the ending to Assassin's Creed III. Every fan has shaped their opinion of it. A number of fans loved the ending, while a much more overshadowing number was sorely disappointed in it. It does not take long to find an article on the internet saying that this game ruined the series and that somebody will no longer buy any Assassin's Creed games.
I admit that when I first saw the ending, my mouth dropped and my heart stopped for a bit. And that was not in a positive way. All previous games made me expect a lot of things from the ending and they did not turn out to be featured. It did not make me lose 'faith' in the series like it did for so many others, though I was very unhappy with it for days. Over time I learned to appreciate the ending more, and now that I have looked over a lot of conversations and hidden messages from the modern day story in Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Assassin's Creed: Revelations and The Lost Archive, I have come to realize the brilliance of the ending.
I will use this blog as an opportunity to explain all the various points that merged into the culmination of Desmond's story as best as I can, though I am afraid that some things may yet remain confusing. Some things I yet do not understand, and perhaps through discussion we may come to a conclusion on those things.
Samson and Delilah
- Juno: "You know very little. We must guide you. Cease your struggle."
- Desmond: "No!"
- ―Juno forcing Desmond to kill Lucy.[src]
The ending of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood was the first ending that really left us in shock. For months people had been speculating about whether Lucy was really dead or just severely wounded. With the release of Assassin's Creed: Revelations, we got confirmation that she really died and quite a few fans were unhappy with this. They got even more upset when The Lost Archive directly revealed that Lucy had shifted sides to the Templars. But it was the speech Juno gave before she took control of Desmond's body that is still more intriguing to this day. It is particularly relevant to Assassin's Creed III's ending, and I think that quite a few of us have been misinterpreting its meaning for quite some time.
"There is one who would accompany you through the gate. She lies not within our sight. The cross darkens the horizon." Many of us have been interpreting this as a reference to "Eve". That "Eve" would be accompanying Desmond through the gate and nobody else. Desmond would need to find this person, and remove Lucy as his love interest so that "Eve" could take her place. So it was quite weird to see William, Shaun and Rebecca follow him through the gate inside the Grand Temple, and to not have a single clue to who this "Eve" is.
There is a different meaning to this part of Juno's dialogue. It refers to there being someone in the group who wants to accompany Desmond through the gate, but that person cannot be there. She's not in the First Civilization's/Juno's predicted future, "not within [their] sight". That person refers to Lucy; the Templar sleeper agent. As revealed in Assassin's Creed III, if Lucy had lived, she would have taken the Apple to Abstergo. And even if Desmond, Shaun and Rebecca survived, they would not be able to get into the Grand Temple. In order for the First Civilization/Juno to get their way, Lucy had to go so that Desmond's path to the Grand Temple was secured. "The Path must be opened. You cannot escape your part in this. The scales shall be balanced."
"It is done. The way lies all before you. Only she remains to be found. Awaken the sixth. Go. ALONE!" It is done. Desmond can now journey to the Grand Temple. So that he may find Juno. So that he would 'awaken' the sixth solution that Jupiter, Minerva and Juno invented - to leave their mortal bodies to enter a transcendent vessel, which only Juno agreed to use - so that Juno might be released. He would need to go alone, into his coma, where he would relive Ezio's memories from 1506 in which he found the Grand Temple coordinates inside the Pythagorean Vault so that Desmond would be brought there. And also where he would meet Clay Kaczmarek's AI construct.
Clay created Adam, Adam created Clay
- "I am with you 'til the end. Find me, in the darkness."
- ―Clay to Desmond, at the end of their initial conversation in the Animus.[src]
Clay helped Desmond out numerous times throughout Desmond's journey in the Animus. Ever since Assassin's Creed II he had been considered Desmond's distant ally, helping Desmond learn about the history of the Assassin-Templar conflict through Glyphs and Rifts. He also sent Desmond a lovely video of Adam and Eve trying to escape from Eden. But why did he help Desmond out and why did he send this video? We never really asked ourselves this. We all assumed that Clay was Desmond's guardian angel, even though Clay exlaimed that "There's no such thing."
Quite a few people may have looked over some relevant dialogue from The Lost Archive. Juno contacted Clay Kaczmarek around the time that Clay was reliving the memories of his ancestor Adam, which was also around the time that he started suffering from the bleeding effect. "Clay Kaczmarek. I, who was once called Juno, have come to show you the way. Remember. In Eden." Juno planned to use Clay in his plot to ensure Desmond would do her bidding. Only after Clay found out about Lucy serving the Templar Order did he decide to aid Juno by 'helping' Desmond; "Your eyes are now open. Help Desmond Miles." "I will." "They must all suffer as we suffered."
In the Bleeding Effect memory of The Lost Archive, there is an email from Clay to his dad in which he said that "There is another I must help along the same path." We all know that Clay's path led to his death. In that same memory, the Greek letter theta can be spotted, which represented the Greek god of death. Furthermore, in the final memory of The Lost Archive, a hex code can be found that translates to "She would have led D away from the path".
Now the thing I still can't wrap my head around is Clay's dialogue during Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood. I thought I had it all figured out, but now that I have been looking at the dialogue again I am getting several more thoughts into my head. Clay's AI construct mentions that "She is not who you think she is. Everything you hope to become, everything you hold dear, it's already gone." I previously thought this would refer Lucy, and her secret service to the Templars.
Now I am not so sure. Now I am thinking that "She is not who you think she is" may refer to Juno instead. And what if "Eden" simply is the explanation to why everything is already gone? I remember there being speculation on the woman shown during the Toba catastrophe being Eve. I figure this may hold some truth, since the woman from the Eden video in AC2 and the woman in ACR look very similar. What would the key and her DNA refer to though?
- "We wait for you, Desmond. You will come here. You will activate it. You will know only when it is too late."
- ―Juno speaking to Desmond in the Colosseum Vault.[src]
Most of the fans were dumbfounded by Desmond's death, and there being no "Eve" in the game at all. To a lot of players it seemed like the ending was also completely random and they thought that the writers were just making the entire story up as they went along. I hope that for those people who read this, they may realize that this is not the case whatsoever. The quote above this paragraph fuels that.
The modern day story from Assassin's Creed III had been planned out for a while, or at least its core was. This also debunks my thoughts on "Eve" being the next focal character of the series, even though the ending of Assassin's Creed III: Liberation still allures to it. It will likely not be so for Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, but perhaps in next year's game.