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This article is about the real world novel. You may be looking for Niccolò Polo's journal.

Assassin's Creed: The Secret Crusade was the third novel based on the Assassin's Creed series, written by Oliver Bowden and published by Penguin Books.

The novel told the story of the Assassin Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad, narrated by Niccolò Polo, the father of the famed explorer, Marco Polo. During Altaïr's life, the book showed events from a third person perspective, but then changed to a first person perspective when Niccolò narrated his own life.

Book summary

Niccolò Polo, father of Marco, will finally reveal the story he has kept secret all his life - the story of Altaïr, one of the Brotherhood's most extraordinary assassins.

Altaïr embarks on a formidable mission - one that takes him throughout the Holy Land and shows him the true meaning of the Assassin's Creed. To demonstrate his commitment, Altaïr must defeat nine deadly enemies, including the Templar leader, Robert de Sable.

Altaïr's life story is told here for the first time: a journey that changes the course of history; his ongoing battle with the Templar conspiracy; a family life that is as tragic as it is shocking; and the ultimate betrayal of an old friend.[1]

Plot summary


The prologue consisted of two pages, which introduced the reader of Niccolò's story, although kept their identity and their location unknown.

Part One

Chapter 1

Niccolò and Maffeo Polo stayed in Masyaf, where the aged Mentor of the Levantine Assassins, Altaïr Ibn-La'Ahad, had his quarters. During the final stages of his life in Masyaf, Altaïr had chosen Niccolò as the recipient of his knowledge.

For weeks and countless hours, Niccolò sat with Altaïr, hearing the adventures of the Mentor's life. Afterwards, Niccolò took his brother Maffeo to the top of the defensive tower, where a lookout first saw the invading force of Salah Al'din's army, "80 years ago, on a day in August."

Chapter 2

The scene then changed to the beginning of Salah Al'din's attack, where the intention of it was to conquer Masyaf, and eventually claim the head of the current Mentor of the Assassins at that time, Al Mualim. While the villagers fled to safety as the army came closer, the Assassins fortified the castle for the battle. However, instead of attacking, the Sultan's army came to a halt in the village, paying little regard to the Assassin fortress.

The next morning the battle began, with the army trying to fight their way inwards under the constant fire of the Assassin archers, along with some villagers that joined the fight. Later, with many dead on both sides, the army retreated to prepare for their next attack. While Salah Al'din left the army to be elsewhere, his uncle, Shihab Al'din, came up the mountain village to address the Master of the Assassins.

Chapter 3

Herein, it was announced that Shihab had come to Al Mualim to enter into negotiations. The story then flashed back to a discussion between Al Mualim and a Master Assassin named Umar Ibn-La'Ahad, Altaïr's father. This flashback revealed Umar's mission to infiltrate Salah Al'din's tent and leave a mark of the Assassins, in order to show him how easily they could take his life. However, this mission nearly failed and cost the life of one of Salah Al'din's most trusted generals.

In exchange for these circumstances, Shihab demanded payment for the death of this general, the price being the head of the culprit. At first, Al Mualim disapproved of this, but Shihab revealed the Assassin spy he had discovered, beaten up and under the condition that he was to be executed instead of Umar.

Chapter 4

The next morning, Maffeo awoke Niccolò, eager to hear what had happened to the spy and its relation to Altaïr. However, keeping to Altaïr's narrative, he skipped fifteen years in time and told Maffeo about Altaïr's failure at Solomon's Temple.

Chapter 5

Back to the past, Altaïr arrived at Masyaf after his failure, contemplating the events to himself. At first, he met Rauf, who had not been notified about what had happened, to Altaïr's slight relief. However, he met Abbas afterwards, who seemed to have guessed about his misfortune, and was eager to rub salt into Altaïr's wounds with his mocking. Finally, he continued up to the fortress, arriving at Al Mualim's quarters, where he was promptly interrogated.

Chapter 6

While Altaïr was explaining what had happened from his experience, Malik stepped in, furiously telling Al Mualim of his loss, both of his brother and his injured arm, before proudly showing his victory to him which Altaïr had neglected to achieve, in the form of the ancient relic the three Assassins were sent to find.

Seconds later, a messenger ran in, telling the three present that Robert de Sable was laying siege on Masyaf. Ordered to go out and help fight the army by Al Mualim, Altaïr helped to stave off some of the forces that were attacking the Masyaf villagers, while they took shelter within the Assassin fortress. After this, Rauf told him to come with him to a tower in order to "surprise" the enemy.

Later, on top of the tower, three Assassins (Altaïr included) took a Leap of Faith to show obedience to their Master, while de Sable watched. As one of the Assassins broke his leg, with Rauf staying behind to tend to their injury, Altaïr later arrived at the trap they had set alone, on the precipice of unleashing death upon the Crusader forces.

Chapter 7

After Altaïr had cut the rope tethering the log storage for the village, crushing many of Robert de Sable's troops underneath as the heavy wood rolled free, the Assassins assembled at the courtyard, still savoring their triumph. As Altaïr approached however, silence replaced the cheerful mood, since everyone now knew about his failure at Solomon's Temple.

In front of the many people that had amassed, Al Mualim announced to Altaïr the reasons for his victory and failure, and eventually, Al Mualim punished Altaïr for the latter, by stabbing the Master Assassin in the abdomen with a golden dagger.

Chapter 8

Altaïr still lived however, and woke to see Al Mualim, who told him why he was still alive and under what conditions; the Master Assassin now turned novice, stripped of his ranks, so as to re-learn the way of the Assassins once more.

Chapter 9

For the first time, Altaïr was demonstrated to be in Damascus, about to begin the Hunt for the Nine set to him by his Master. Once he slipped through the gate to the city, he began to realize the impact of the changes that had been laid upon him, with his lack of equipment being one of them.

According to his objective, he then visited the Damascus Rafiq, who had already been informed of Altaïr's "difficulties". As ordered, the Rafiq sent Altaïr to search the city for information, as he no longer had it previously prepared for him. After going through the city for some time, Altaïr spotted an orator, whom he then followed into a quiet alleyway to begin his investigation.

Chapter 10

After some time scouting around Damascus, Altaïr returned to the Assassin bureau and told the Rafiq what he had learned, before he was given a feather marker and permission to assassinate Tamir, his first target.

From there, the Assassin left the bureau with haste, and made his way towards his target, who was located at the market place Altaïr had discovered he would be. Upon arriving there, Altaïr saw Tamir interrogate an agonized client. After Tamir was done with the client, who he had stabbed repeatedly in a frenzy, Altaïr assassinated him, at which Tamir stated his motivations to the Assassin in his final moments.

Chapter 11

With the first target dispatched, Al Mualim expressed his satisfaction when he heard of Altaïr's success. After this, Altaïr then spoke about Acre, which would be the location of his next target.

Making his way to the Acre Bureau, which was owned by Jabal, the two shared a brief discussion before Altaïr left to begin his investigation. After pickpocketing a scroll with information that he required, Altaïr returned to the bureau and obtained his feather marker.

Chapter 12

Next, the Assassin slipped into the Hospitalier Fortress with the help of some scholars. Inside the building, Altaïr witnessed the cruel treatment to a patient who had almost escaped, where Garnier de Naplouse - Altaïr's target - tried to reason with them, but they only expressed the desire to escape, and thus Garnier let the guards break both of the patient's legs.

Some time after, Altaïr saw de Naplouse check up with his patients, at which the Assassin witnessed that some of the patients seemed to be thankful to the doctor, although they were in a dreary state. As the guards were still busy, Altaïr assassinated his target, before letting Garnier speak during his final moments of life. While what he had said confused Altaïr, the Assassin had still made a successful escape.

Chapter 13

Back at Masyaf, Altaïr spoke with Al Mualim, telling him of his target's assassination and inquiring about the confusing words which de Naplouse had spoken. Al Mualim answered Altaïr's suspicions, and told him that his next target was in Jerusalem, at which the Mentor smiled.

As Altaïr came into the Jerusalem Bureau, he suddenly noticed why his Master had smiled, after seeing that Malik was the Rafiq for the city. After a brief, but rather blunt conversation, in which Altaïr told Malik what he knew from exploring Jerusalem, he received the customary feather and went out to assassinate his next target, Talal.

Chapter 14

Walking into where Talal kept his slaves, Altaïr realized he had gone straight into a trap, but he carried on regardless once he heard his target. Altaïr and Talal conversed for a while before Talal showed himself, having the Assassin exactly where he wanted him; in the light, where the archers were able to easily hit him.

Talal attempted to kill Altaïr with his guards, before fleeing himself, however, after a few moments, Altaïr was on his trail after swiftly defeating his opposition. Finally, after a heated chase through the streets, Altaïr assassinated Talal, and the Templar spoke his last words to his killer.

Chapter 15

With his third target out of nine dealt with, Altaïr set up camp by a well and fell asleep, dreaming of when he was younger. At age 11, Altaïr, whose father had just been executed, grief-strickenly placed the blame on Ahmad, the one that should've been killed in his place.

The boy then spent his next days in the room of his father, as Umar's smell still lingered there. During the night however, Ahmad came to his quarters and committed suicide with a dagger, and once he informed the Master, Al Mualim told the frightened Altaïr never to speak of it, not even to Abbas, Ahmad's son.

The next day, he was put together with Abbas to begin his apprenticeship, though nightmares haunted him in his dreams. That part of his life faded, as the older Altaïr woke up sweating from his nightmare, hoping to sleep again at least until light.

Part Two

Chapter 16

Al Mualim congratulated Altaïr on his success and told him of his next targets, then let the Assassin leave for Acre to assassinate his next target, William de Montferrat. Here he met Jabal again and gathered information before going out on investigation again.

Chapter 17

The Assassin went through the market place, eventually ending up pickpocketing a scroll. He then spotted a man pleading against de Montferrat, causing commotion within the crowds of people. Altaïr, satisfied about his discoveries, went back to Jabal and received the Feather.

Chapter 18

Returning to the citadel, Altaïr witnessed a conversation between Richard the Lionheart and William de Montferrat. The two men went into the fortress with Altaïr following them from the rooftops, taking out every archer in his way. De Montferrat stopped to speak to his guards, telling them off for their recent laziness, and as he was done and sent the guards away - thus being unprotected - Altaïr struck and assassinated him. There, Lord Montferrat told the Assassin his motives before dying.

Chapter 19

Again Altaïr spoke to Al Mualim, and noticed his Master demanded so much detail on his victories, but held so much information back. Tasked with the assassination of Abu'l Nuqoud, he traveled back to Damascus, where he met the 'impertinent' Rafiq again. They argued some more and told each other what they knew about the target. Altaïr visited the places Abu'l was hated, hearing some scholars talk about what the Assassin thinks is 'the new world', although he still knew nothing about it. He then went to find more information about the target, leaving for a party after he heard Abu'l Nuqoud was giving one.

Chapter 20

Being at the party, seeing all the richness of wine fountains and people clothed in silk and gold, Altaïr searched for his target. A few moments later he saw him on a balcony, and so Abu'l Nuquod addressed his public, going from friendly to hostile in his speech, also mentioning The New World. Archers took their positions, and at the end of the speech - when all the people who drank from the poisoned wine fountain were dying - they were signaled to kill everyone that had not died yet and tried to escape. Abu'l, distracted and amused by the massacre, was soon enough assassinated by Altaïr, sharing his last thoughts with him.

Chapter 21

Altaïr visited Al Mualim again and questioned him about his findings, trying to become less confused about his targets' words. This time, Altaïr wanted solid answers, and so he demanded that his Master tell him why the men he had killed spoke similar words. Al Mualim eventually relented and told the Assassin that each man he had assassinated where members of the Templar Order, all under the leadership of Robert de Sable. Altaïr, armed with this knowledge, made his way out to assassinate his next target.

Chapter 22

As Altaïr came into Jerusalem, he had some trouble with guards, but eventually arrived at the bureau where he met Malik again, where he told him that his next target was Majd Addin. After some arguing, Altaïr left to visit the Wailing Wall, where his target would be at the execution plaza.

Chapter 23

The Assassin approached the execution plaza and saw the show was about to start, Majd Addin speaking to his public. He introduced the people he was about to slaughter: the harlot, the thief, the gambler and the heretic. The last one being an Assassin. In Addin's show, he killed the first three of his victims, a commotion starting to grow as the Assassin was about to be executed, proving fatal for the executioner, as Altaïr used this commotion to get close enough to assassinate him. Altaïr listened to what the dying Templar told him, then escaped as Malik's men freed the captive Assassin midst the chaos.

Chapter 24

Altaïr spoke with Al Mualim, and again questioned him about the words of his targets. The Master showed him the Apple of Eden, explaining to him the history of the device its effect on humanity. After this, he instructed Altaïr on his next targets; Sibrand and Jubair.

Chapter 25

Here the story told us about young Altaïr and Abbas becoming friends and, together, learning the ways of the Assassins. Altaïr pitied Abbas for not knowing about his father, so he told him, expecting tears, anger, disbelief, but never silence.

Chapter 26

Altaïr stood on top of a building, looking down at a fire where books were being burned, by scholars and Jubair, his target. There Jubair spoke to the scholars about how books poison mankind's minds. As one of the scholars protested, Jubair's mood darkened, and he threw the scholar into the fire, to join the books he didn't want to burn. As the rest of the scholars left to get more books, Jubair was alone, and Altaïr took this moment to assassinate him, listening to his words, leaving before getting caught by guards. Altaïr spoke with Al Mualim, his Master giving him his full rank again. Al Mualim then questioned him about the Assassins' ways, to see if Altaïr had changed, then tasked him to his final target before de Sable, Sibrand.

Chapter 27

Again, and for the last time, Altaïr visited Acre. There he talked to Jabal, who apologized for his mistrust in Altaïr's dedication to the Assassins' cause. Altaïr then headed for the docks, where he saw a frightened Sibrand bullying a priest for looking like an Assassin, whom he then killed. Sibrand then went to his own boat, with which he would try to escape, but soon enough, as the guards had dispersed at Sibrand's own command, Altaïr assassinated him. Again, Altaïr listened to what his target said, and again Altaïr became more and more confused as to what they said. Then, meeting with Al Mualim again, Altaïr questioned him about de Sable's cause. After having spoken to him and leaving Masyaf, he saw Abbas, remembering an old wound his former friend had caused.

Chapter 28

A flashback to young Abbas and Altaïr, after Altaïr had told his friend about his father. The days after that, Abbas became more and more quiet, and one day, as they sparred, his rage unleashed on young Altaïr. Abbas attacked Altaïr as they met for combat training, holding him pinned to the ground with a dagger at his throat. Abbas angrily ordered Altaïr to say that he had lied when he said his father, Ahmad, had killed himself. Altaïr was hesitant but eventually did so, and Abbas relented.

Chapter 29

Master Assassin Altaïr arrived at the Jerusalem Bureau, slightly pleased to meet Malik, who greeted him more friendly. Altaïr told Malik that he should try find out more about what Altaïr didn't see, and he apologized for his arm and brother. Altaïr then went to the cemetery, feeling that there was something wrong about it. However, before the Assassin could leave, the trap had already been sprung, leaving him in a frenzy of arrows and swords. He had seen that de Sable, who was also at the cemetery, didn't look like he remembered, but now even de Sable sounded like a woman as he spoke. A few moments later, and all of the guards killed, he stabbed 'de Sable' in the shoulder and took her under cover, to hear her out, pulling off the helmet to see that it was indeed a woman. Then after having escaped to the Bureau, he told Malik it was a trap. After his conversation with Malik, Altaïr headed for Arsuf, where he would find the real Robert de Sable.

Chapter 30

Altaïr saw the armies that met in Arsuf, that of Salah Al'din and Richard the Lionheart battling as far as the eye could see. The Assassin tried to make his way to the rear of the Crusader army, where Richard would be. There he tried to convince the King that he came with the intention to negotiate, not fight, telling him that de Sable was a traitor. However, as Richard couldn't decide, he let the Templar and Assassin battle, and whoever won was right in their convictions.

Chapter 31

Altaïr having killed Robert de Sable in battle, interrogated the dying Templar of what he knew, finally opening the Assassin's eyes to his Master, that he was indeed betraying him. Then, when Robert died, Altaïr traveled back to Masyaf.

Chapter 32

Here the Assassin found Masyaf totally deserted. As he walked through the village, he was attacked by a group of other Assassins, whom he killed. After that, he saw Malik with a group of his Assassins, and Altaïr told them to be careful; what had happened could happen to the Rafiq too. Altaïr and Malik parted ways, and when the Assassin arrived at the courtyard, he saw all the villagers of Masyaf crowded up there, brainwashed. Altaïr knew Al Mualim was certainly a Templar, an enemy.

Chapter 33

The Apprentice battled his Master, who first used the Apple to create duplicates of Altaïr's nine victims, then made copies of himself and lastly he directly battled Altaïr, which proved the old traitor fatal. As Al Mualim died, he let go of the Apple, which was then picked up by the Assassin, who activated it, seeing things of the future in it and letting it display a map of the world. Malik then came running in, saying the spell that had been cast over Masyaf was broken. Altaïr, still having the artifact, was fighting to destroy it, but was physically unable to. After this, Altaïr became the Master of the Order.

Part Three

Chapter 34

Niccolò continued his story about Altaïr, after he became Mentor; many sided against him, but Altaïr knew how he could persuade them. The Assassin was also still thinking of his encounter with Maria, and of what the Apple was. Altaïr was curious of what the Templars were planning, and thus headed for Acre with a group of followers, putting Malik in temporary control of the Order.

Chapter 35

There was an absence of Templar soldiers everywhere in Acre. Later, he discovered a small fleet of ships that was Templar owned. As the Assassin got closer to the fleet, he heard a group of people talk, also hearing the voice of Maria. He discovered the Templars are now ruled by Armand Bouchart. As the conversation between the group ended, Maria was left alone, and Altaïr came up to talk to her. A few moments later, Altaïr went back to his crew - Maria tied up walking with him - and told them they were heading for Limassol.

Chapter 36

Altaïr sailed to Cyprus with Maria, discovering that it was overtaken by Templars; some of the population that were unhappy with the tyrannic leadership, joined the Resistance. There Altaïr met Alexander, a friend in the Resistance. They decided it was best to keep Maria captive in a safehouse, while the Assassin went to find Osman, who would help him get inside Limassol Castle. Osman told him that Frederick the Red had to be assassinated before he could help any further; so that he was appointed to his position and could control the guard activity in the Castle. Altaïr returned to the safehouse, questioning Maria about the Archive and conversing with Alexander. Then, after some time, Altaïr went back to the Castle to assassinate Frederick.

Chapter 37

Osman had done his job, the Castle's security had dropped to just a few men. Deep inside the Castle, Altaïr found his target, who was presiding a duel between two men. The Assassin dropped down behind Frederick, and as he turned to speak, Altaïr slashed his blade through the male's throat, killing him before he could finish his sentence. Next, the Master killed the remaining men. As he left, Altaïr saw why the Castle was so poorly guarded; the safehouse was set on fire.

Chapter 38

Having found safety on the rooftops, Altaïr saw people flee from their houses, and he decided to go see why. After following them, he heard that Armand Bouchart had arrived just recently. He also saw Maria in the crowd. At the cathedral steps stood Osman, and a few moments later Bouchart appeared, enlightening the crowd about Frederik the Red's death and recent changes. Osman protested against these changes, at which he angered Bouchart, who thus rammed his sword into the stomach of Osman. Some moments later, Maria rushed to the steps of the cathedral, bowing down in front of Bouchart, who already saw her as a traitor. As Bouchart left, Maria was bound and dragged away. Altaïr followed Maria, saving her and taking her back to Alexander, who told Altaïr that Bouchart was heading for Kyrenia. Altaïr decided to follow him.

Chapter 39

The Assassin and the Templar had boarded a pirate ship, telling each other about their lives as they sailed to Kyrenia. Once there, the pirates found out that they were the people Bouchart was looking for, and tried to kill Altaïr and Maria. However, Altaïr easily disposed of the annoyances, discovering Maria had once again escaped.

Chapter 40

Easily he found her back, and he also met Markos, who promised to keep Maria captive as Altaïr was to visit Barnabas, the contact Alexander told him about. Arriving at the safe-house, Barnabas and Altaïr conversed, the newly met man telling him of Jonas, a traitor who had been working for the Templars. A few moments later, Altaïr found Jonas and assassinated him, talking with his dying victim, he thought about the Bull he had mentioned, and who it could have been. He went back to Maria and Markos, questioning them about the Bull. They agreed on going to a safe-house in the Commons District, where Barnabas was. Altaïr felt unsure about Barnabas now, but listened when he told him to go see the riots at the church.

Chapter 41

There, looking at the riots from on top of the rooftops, he made the decision that the Bull had to die. But when Altaïr returned to the safe-house, Barnabas was nowhere to be seen; he was in fact a traitor, as the Assassin's instincts had already pointed out. Markos and Maria had already arrived, and they told Altaïr that the citizens were protesting the death of Jonas. After a brief conversation, Altaïr found out that Moloch - the Bull - resided in Kantara Castle.

Chapter 42

Moving through the well-defended castle, disposing of any guards that crossed paths with him, he eventually found the Bull, hidden in a secret room under a trap door. There, he tried to stealthily kill him, but Moloch already heard him coming, having prepared himself, he picked up the Assassin as if he were a trophy, almost choking him to death. Out of boredom, Moloch let Altaïr live, which would prove fatal for the Bull as Altaïr, exhausted by the long battle, finally drove his blade far enough into his massive opponent so that something inside him snapped, killing him. Altaïr contemplated who would replace this tyrant.

Chapter 43

Altaïr found out that Maria had been taken away by Templars as he came back to the safe-house. Markos, being among the ones that could escape in time, told him the Templars harnessed the power of the Dark Oracle and used her to find the safe-house. Markos also told him that Barnabas had been executed the day before Altaïr arrived; thus now he knew he was replaced by a Templar. Altaïr left for the place the Resistance prisoners were being held, letting them free and hearing that Maria had been taken by Shalim, the Bull's son. Soon enough Altaïr was scaling walls of the fortress at Buffavento. Once inside, he found Shalim and Bouchart talking, also mentioning Alexander. Now the Assassin was making his way to the Dark Oracle. As he moved into her cell - or lair - she began acting more unsettled, eventually attacking Altaïr, at which he had to put her down for his own safety. Later, back at the safe-house, he wrote Codex page five, and a part of eight.

Chapter 44

Altaïr decided to follow Shalim, in hope to find Maria, but instead, ending up at a brothel, so he returned to the market place where Markos was. He told Altaïr that Shalim had to go to the cathedral a lot, since he needed to make frequent confessions about his lifestyle, and that he thus had to speak to the monks there, to find out more about his target. There he found Shalim himself, speaking about Bouchart's wishes to the crowd he had gathered. Shalim left, Altaïr followed, ending up at the St Hilarion Castle, in which Shalim disappeared. The Assassin, having lost his target, sat down on a low wall nearby as some courtesans crossed the docks, Maria being one of them. With them, he entered the castle, unnoticed.

Chapter 45

Altaïr did not know Shalim had a twin brother, Shahar, and that he was the one delivering the speech. Maria and Shahar conversed about the Templar ways, before being interrupted by Altaïr. The real Shalim came in with guards, and the Assassin finally noticed they were twins. Maria quickly disposed of the guards, then fled, leaving Altaïr to fight two skilled swordsmen alone - slaying them both. Later, he returned to the safe-house, telling Markos he would be heading back to Limassol. He also wrote another piece of the Codex, page one.

Chapter 46

Arriving at Limassol, he located the safe-house and found Alexander. In a brief confrontation with him, Altaïr found out that he wasn't a Templar, but the two had been set up against each other, as they were both tricked into believing each other were Templar-sided Resistance members. Altaïr then headed off to a failed search for Bouchart, coming back to find the safe-house empty, a note left there for him. The Assassin went to the courtyard where the note said they were due to meet, only to find the dead body of Alexander; it was a trap. The fake Barnabas came out, and as Altaïr unsheathed his sword, he opened the door to the resentful crowd outside, to make them think the Assassin was the one who killed Alexander. Altaïr couldn't kill civilians, so he used the Apple he had with him to persuade them to his will, saving himself and setting them up against the Templars. 'Barnabas', prepared to fight, came down the ramparts. However, he was stopped by Maria, who put a blade through his chest.

Chapter 47

Maria then took Altaïr with her to the Archives, telling him to follow her, being obstructed by guards on his path, but eventually making it into the almost empty library, seeing both Bouchart and Maria. She was holding off the Templar leader, only just, before being struck by his sword, tumbling, yelling in pain. Bouchart made the first move, quickly tiring, and Altaïr made the last, the dying man giving him respect - and ignorance - for this, telling the Assassin of the power of the Pieces of Eden as he drew his last breath. Cannons were then fired at the Archive, to destroy every last piece of it. Altaïr quickly escaped, taking Maria with him. Later, after the Templars had left, taking all the pieces of archive with them, Altaïr and Maria were talking to each other again; Maria telling Altaïr she was heading east, at which he replied he was also heading east.

Part Four

Chapter 48

Niccolò told Maffeo that Darim, who invited them to Masyaf, was the son of Maria and Altaïr. He explained that Maria and Altaïr were wed in Limassol, and that Maria gave birth to a second son two years after Darim was born; Sef. He also told him that the Codex was a summary of all the discoveries Altaïr had made, and he tried thinking of why they were invited in the first place; maybe because it had to do with them living in Constantinople? He then continued the story at the point Altaïr returned from his travel East, to a Masyaf where everything had changed.

Chapter 49

The Ibn-La'Ahad family rode slowly into Masyaf, where Swami - still an apprentice when Altaïr left - greeted them first. Masyaf had become a darker place, and had changed much to what Altaïr had planned it to be, acting in on the Assassin's instincts. They were led to a small house to the west of the fortress, where they were told that Malik was in prison, Sef had traveled to Alamut, and a meeting of the council had been planned the next day; with Abbas as chairman. Altaïr told Darim to ride to Alamut, in order to bring Sef back.

Chapter 50

The following day, Altaïr and Maria were led through the citadel by Swami, to the council, where Altaïr was forced to report about his trip to the East. After the story, Abbas informed Altaïr and Maria that Sef had been killed by Malik, which was why he was imprisoned. Then, as Altaïr lost control of his emotions, he stated that the former Mentor could not resume leadership of the Order, thus the leadership stayed with the council.

Chapter 51

Back in the small cabin, Maria and Altaïr discussed their situation; Masyaf had been neglected, Sef who had been murdered by Malik, Abbas who was now leader of the Order and the Apple that Maria wanted to be destroyed by now. Altaïr headed for Masyaf's dungeons, where Malik laid, neglected and emaciated. There, Altaïr found that he wasn't the one who murdered Sef.

Chapter 52

He took Malik back to the cabin where both Maria and Altaïr cared for the almost dying friend. Malik told them Sef had been murdered by Abbas as he staged his coup, two years ago. In the next room, Altaïr and Maria planned their next move; to confront Abbas. Moments later, Altaïr stood at the courtyard with Abbas, who had his Assassin loyalists gathered with him. There, Swami came up to Abbas, delivering a sack to him. What Abbas pulled out of that sack was the head of Altaïr's former friend, Malik, eyeballs rolled up and the neck dripping with fresh blood. Abbas accused Altaïr of murdering Malik, then took Maria and held a dagger to her throat - the same dagger his father had killed himself with. Altaïr then pulled the Apple from his robe, which Swami instantly reached for. All of Altaïr's rage was transmitted into Swami, as he brutally - controlled by the Apple - killed himself with his own hands, then he took out his dagger and slashed himself open. Maria, trying to reach for Altaïr, was hit by Swami's dagger at her throat, both of them falling to the ground, dying. As Abbas ordered his loyalists to kill Altaïr, the Assassin fled. He finally reached the top of the tower of which he had jumped a lifetime ago, he hobbled to the platform, spread his arms out, and dropped.

Chapter 53

Niccolò finally understood why he had been invited: to spread the word of the Assassins. Maffeo now wanted to stay, while Niccolò wanted to leave, whereas it was vice versa at the beginning of their stay; the reason being that Mongols were heading to Masyaf. Niccolò told the reader he had had some presents from Altaïr, having his suspicions as to what they might be. He skipped the story to a man in the desert, twenty years from where Altaïr escaped from Masyaf. ... Mukhlis, a tradesman, was on a journey back to his family in Masyaf; now he was somewhere in the desert, a two days' ride away from home. He had heard of bandits plundering throughout the desert, taking all belongings and leaving the owners upside down in trees with their guts hanging from them. Bayhas, son of Fahad, being the most brutal of all. Mukhlis was forced to rest, and the next day he found himself with a stranger hanging over him, holding a blade to his neck. He and his companion bandits hung him in a tree, but before they could kill him, Altaïr arrived.

Chapter 54

The old Assassin instantly took out one of the three men. A battle started and Altaïr, outnumbered and not in the best shape, was immediately tired out, bleeding severely from his wounds. There, Mukhlis - still tied hanging to the tree - grabbed hold of Bayhas, the leader of the bandit group, at which Altaïr sliced the enemy open in his last strand of power, scaring off the third bandit. Then, Altaïr went unconscious almost bleeding to death. Mukhlis, having freed himself, put Altaïr over his horse and headed home.

Chapter 55

One of Fahad's men had claimed the life of Bayhas' killer, and word had spread about the return of Altaïr throughout the village in the week the Assassin had been unconscious. As he awoke, he spoke to Mukhlis about his current situation and where he had been after throwing himself off the tower, also mentioning how he was planning to free the village.

Chapter 56

The next day, Altaïr intervened in fights, showing the people of the village the Assassins' ways. He also went to the basket-weaver and a blacksmith to get his weapons made; all ideas taken from the Apple. The next few days Altaïr noticed a man watching him, stalking him. He eventually showed himself, turning out not to be an enemy but a friend. It was Malik, son of Malik, known as Tazim to most of the Order. He let Altaïr know that he and some other Assassins would join him in taking back Masyaf.

Chapter 57

The day after, Mukhlis informed people of the village that the Master was to march up the hill, which excited them into gathering at the marketplace, where Altaïr then joined them. He thought of what had gone through him, what Maria would've said if she was still with him. There, at the marketplace, Altaïr and the villagers waited for young Malik to come back with his support. After some time, men dressed in white robes with cowls came from the shadows, to immediately win the trust of their leader who had doubted Malik's stealth. Immediately they left for the hills, to Abbas, with the instructions not to kill anyone. There, marching toward the fortress, Abbas' loyalists attacked, to soon be neutralized, unharmed. Above, where Abbas' archers were, this sparked a rebellion, unwilling to shoot their own people, following the example Altaïr had given. Inside the castle, Altaïr and Abbas faced each other, Abbas still accusing the other of lying about his father. Then, when Abbas ordered his men to kill him, Altaïr shot him with his newly acquired Hidden Gun, scaring off any of the enemy's followers. Abbas shared his last words with Altaïr, where the old Assassin still saw that orphan boy the moment he passed away. Two days later, Fahad came back to Masyaf, explaining that it was mostly his wife's interference that he had to avenge their son's name. Fahad left, in good mood, thanks to Altaïr's negotiation skills.

Chapter 58

Niccolò described how the Mongols had arrived, and that Altaïr had gathered with them to give them their last objects to keep safe; artifacts - five of them, each of them being a stone with a hole in its center, keys imbued with a message. Then Niccolò and Maffeo left Masyaf, which was already being overrun by the Mongols, Altaïr barking orders at his Assassins to try and fend off their enemy.

Chapter 59

The Polos had lost the Codex, but were still holding on to the artifacts. They decided to hide them in Constantinople for an Assassin of the future to find. They also spread word of the Creed and set up an Assassins guild there, in Costantinople.


The mysterious Assassin - the reader - heard noises from his cabin, indicating they were approaching land. He closed Niccolò's journal, secured his blade mechanism and pulled up his cowl. From there, he opened the hatch of his quarters to see people welcoming him. Ezio was in the great city of Constantinople.

Differences from Assassin's Creed


  • Altaïr assassinated William of Montferrat before Abu'l Nuqoud – and likewise Jubair before Sibrand – whereas in the game, the sequenced order suggested the opposite.
  • All three accused by Majd Addin died by his hand and the Templar finished his speech for the Assassin, whereas in Assassin's Creed, Altaïr had the opportunity to save all accused people.
  • All Memory Corridor dialogues took place in the book, but they were explained either by the stealthy assassination of a target or through the guards being shocked and allowing the scene to play out.
  • While attempting to assassinate Robert at Majd Addin's funeral, Altaïr realized that there was a decoy acting as Robert and fought to find out who it is, whereas in Assassin's Creed, he was shocked to discover the imposter by the time he had started fighting. Despite this, it should be noted that in the book, Altaïr was still surprised to discover that it was a woman.


  • It was never mentioned that Altaïr had regained his throwing knives or his sword, yet while trying to kill William of Montferrat, he used both.

Other events

  • After being demoted, Altaïr began his quest for redemption by immediately going to Damascus in order to kill Tamir, skipping the hunt for the traitor in Masyaf entirely.
  • Altaïr did not interact with informants during his investigations of the nine targets.
  • Altaïr witnessed the rescue of the captured Assassin after Majd Addin's assassination.
  • It was hinted that, in the book, Altaïr still retained his ring finger and that it was used to trigger the Hidden Blade's mechanism.
  • Altaïr assassinated Jubair in the Madrasah, whereas in the game he had to track him down among his followers using Eagle Vision.
  • No mention was made of Altaïr advancing through the ranks of the Order after each assassination.
  • Altaïr assassinated Abu'l Nuquod on the balcony of his palace, whereas in the game he had to chase him down, although it is possible to kill Abu'l Nuquod on the balcony if he is grabbed in time and thrown towards it.


  • A crossbow in shown on Altaïr's back on the book's back cover, despite the weapon not being in the game or the book.


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