- "For centuries we have focused on the trappings of power: the titles of nobility, the offices of Church and State. Caught in the very lie we crafted to shepherd the masses... In the wake of revolution, the Order will adapt. They will retreat to the shadows and we will, at last, be the secret masters that we were meant to be."
- ―Germain to Élise de la Serre, regarding the Templars' agenda, 1794.[src]
François-Thomas Germain (1726 – 1794) was a French silversmith, Sage and a Grand Master of the Parisian Rite of the Templar Order during the French Revolution. He was killed by the Assassin Arno Dorian and buried in the Parisian catacombs.
- "He was cast out of the Order when I was a girl. Something about heretical notions, or Jacques de Molay, I'm not entirely sure."
- ―Élise de la Serre, regarding Germain's banishment from the Templar Order, 1791.[src]
Born in 1726, Germain was raised and trained by his father to continue the family business as a silversmith. However, by the time of his recorded death in 1791, most of his work was either stolen, lost or destroyed.
Germain was a high-ranking Templar in the French branch of the Order. At one point during his life, he began experiencing visions of the First Civilization. Initially, he believed that he was descending into insanity, but realized the truth of his visions upon the discovery of the Codex Pater Intellectus written by Jacques de Molay, in the vault beneath the Parisian Temple.
Through the readings of de Molay, Germain established a connection between him and the legendary Grand Master, and was determined to shape the destiny of the human race in the way envisioned by de Molay. He believed that by stripping the aristocracy of power and giving it to the middle class, he would create a society which could be easily controlled by the Templars.
However, due to his radical ideals, around the year 1778 he was cast out of the Templar Order by its Grand Master, François de la Serre. Embittered, Germain deemed the Order corrupt and having forgotten its original purpose, and schemed with other Templars who shared his vision, the first being Marie Lévesque. He also recruited other individuals who were dissatisfied with the state of living in France, and the French monarchy itself.
The new Grand Master
- Sivert: "It is done. De La Serre is dead... Grand Master."
- Germain: "Good."
- ―Sivert reporting his success to Germain, 1789.[src]
To take control of the Templar Order from de la Serre, Germain orchestrated his assassination. Crafting a silver pin laced with poison to serve as the murder weapon, Germain entrusted two of his followers, Charles Gabriel Sivert and le Roi des Thunes, with killing de la Serre.
On the day where the assassination was to take place, Germain was briefly encountered by Arno Dorian, though both were unaware of each other's identities. Arno mistook Germain's carriage for François de la Serre's, when he attempted to deliver a message from a Templar loyalist, Chrétien Lafrenière, to the Grand Master.
Both Sivert and le Roi des Thunes succeeded in assassinating de la Serre, and reported to Germain. With the Grand Master dead, Germain gained control of majority of the Templar Order. However, he was still opposed by Lafrenière and de la Serre's daughter, Élise.
After Arno dealt with Sivert and le Roi des Thunes, the poisoned pin used to kill de la Serre led him to Germain. Since the Assassin did not recognize him, Germain omitted the fact that he was once a Templar himself, and pretended to be a simple silversmith who unintentionally discovered Chrétien Lafrenière's secrets while working for him. Germain catered to Arno's desire for revenge, and falsely accused Lafrenière of ordering the making of the poisoned pin, as well as plotting something ominous in Les Halles.
At the Jacobin Club, Germain met with several of his Templar subordinates. Lévesque informed him of the success in inflating the price of grain, to further stir up the populace to rise up, but noted that the process would take too long. However, Germain said that it would be a small price to pay for successfully discrediting King Louis XVI, as he desired to see the King condemned before his death, rather than hailed as a martyr, despite Frédéric Rouille's suggestions of simply assassinating the monarch.
Aloys la Touche informed Germain of the deaths of Sivert and le Roi des Thunes, though the Grand Master remained confident that their deaths would not hinder his plans for long. Rouille also expressed concern that Élise may have rallied the conservative members of the Order against them, but Germain revealed that he had already lured her into a trap, and that Lafrenière was no longer a factor in their plans.
Unbeknownst to the Templars, Arno had overheard their plot, and headed off to save Élise. By the time Arno had discovered Germain's deception from Élise herself, the Grand Master had already abandoned his residence, knowing that his deception would not hold up for long.
Execution of the King
- "The King is… merely a symbol. A symbol can inspire fear, and fear can inspire control--but men inevitably lose their fear of symbols. As you can see. This was the truth De Molay died for: the Divine Right of Kings is nothing but the reflection of sunlight upon gold. When the Crown and Church are ground to dust, we who control the gold will decide the future. (Jacques de Molay, you are avenged.)"
- ―Germain to Arno during King Louis XVI's execution, 1793.[src]
On 21 January 1793, Germain was present at the Place de la Concorde, where Louis XVI was about to be executed. The Grand Master confronted Arno once again, proclaiming the rebirth of the Templar Order. Germain claimed to Arno that the reason for de la Serre's murder was to rid the Templars of corruption and bigotry. Germain also stated that François' murder was only the first phase of the Order's rebuilding, and that it would truly be reborn with the death of King Louis.
Germain also revealed his plans as Louis XVI was placed on the guillotine. By stripping France's upper class and aristocracy of power and giving it to the lower classes, it would be far easier for the Templars to gain control of the populace. Once the King was beheaded, Germain proclaimed that Jacques de Molay had been avenged, then made his escape, leaving Arno to deal with his subordinates.
With the death of Louis XVI, Germain entrusted the control of the newly founded French Republic to one of his followers, Maximilien de Robespierre. Robespierre would enforce Templar subjugation over the people in France through the Reign of Terror, carrying out mass executions of those accused of treason and moderatism.
- Élise: "Did you think this day would never come? That because François De La Serre had no sons to avenge him and that your crime would go unanswered?"
- Germain: "Revenge, is it? Your vision is as narrow as your father's."
- ―Élise and Germain's confrontation in the Temple, 1794.[src]
After the fall of Robespierre's regime, knowledge of Germain's base of operations at the Temple was exposed to Arno and Élise, as each infiltrated the structure on their own and attempted to assassinate the Grand Master. It was during this endeavor that Germain was tracked by Arno to the Temple's rooftop. As the Assassin attempted to kill him, he soon discovered that the Templar wielded an ancient and advanced weapon, a Sword of Eden.
Germain retreated to the vault beneath the Temple, in preparation for the final confrontation. Arno requested that Élise distract Germain, which she successfully did. As she confronted the Grand Master over the nature of the Templar Order, the distraction allowed Arno to land three successive strikes. Prompted to use the Sword's power, Germain blasted Arno away with the artifact's power, pinning the Assassin under a large chunk of debris.
Faced with the choice of helping Arno free himself or preventing Germain's escape, Élise initially went to aid Arno, but soon changed her mind, engaging in a duel with the Templar. In the exchange of blows, Élise managed to damage the Sword of Eden enough for it to destabilize, with the resulting explosion injuring Germain and killing Élise. Just prior to the blast, Arno succeeded in breaking free, but arrived too late to stop the event from happening.
- "Perhaps it will not be my hand that shepherds mankind back into its proper place--but it will be someone's. Think of this when you remember her."
- ―Germain's final words, 1794.[src]
Mournfully, Arno looked over to the body of his dead love, before turning to assassinate Germain with his Hidden Blade. As Germain died, he spoke to Arno through a vision, telling the Assassin of his memories of the First Civilization, and the motive of his purge of the Templar Order. Before succumbing to his wounds, Germain told Arno that his death would do little to stop his plans, and take Élise's death as an example.
In 1808, Arno entered the Temple once more, accompanied by Napoleon Bonaparte. They discovered Germain's corpse which had long since decayed, and buried his skeletal remains in the Parisian catacombs.
Being one of the Sages, Germain was important to both Templars and Assassins of the 21st century. Finding information regarding the whereabouts of his body through the memories of Arno was an important goal of the modern Assassins, but no recovery effort was made after they had learned that his remains were poorly buried in a Parisian catacomb, and would have been badly decomposed by the modern times.
Personality and characteristics
As a reincarnation of Aita, a member of the First Civilization, Germain displayed contempt towards humanity, believing that it should revert back to being the subjugated race they had been millenia before. His beliefs were also influenced by the ideologies of Jacques de Molay, who was also a Sage.
Germain was extremely ruthless, willing to go to great lengths to see his ambitions fulfilled, and humanity returned to the role of slaves. This was seen through the turmoil of the French Revolution, where his machinations caused millions of civilians across France to starve, and thousands more to die under the Reign of Terror. He also expressed little remorse for the deaths of his Templar followers, even forsaking them if they were ever to outlive their usefulness, as seen with Robespierre. Germain believed these sacrifices to be for the greater good.
He cared little for his own well-being, calmly embracing death in his conversation with Arno. This was due to his confidence that someone else would carry on his ideals in the future, and the knowledge that as a Sage, he would be reborn again.
Equipment and skills
Being a Sage, Germain was capable of using First Civilization artifacts without suffering from any detrimental effects. He was able to wield the Sword of Eden with great proficiency, accessing its abilities of physical displacement, creating illusions and projecting energy with relative ease. Germain could use the sword as a melee weapon as well, being able to hold his own in a sword fight against Élise, as he was trained in the art of swordsmanship by Frederick Weatherall, making him a highly skilled swordsman.
As a silversmith, Germain was a skilled craftsman, and was able to manufacture silver pins used to signify the allegiance of his followers. These pins could be used for offensive purposes, and laced with poisons if needed.
Germain was a master of manipulation, able to recruit certain individuals by exploiting their dissatisfaction with the corruption in France, such as Aloys la Touche and Frédéric Rouille. Likewise, Germain was able to take advantage of Arno's desire for redemption for de la Serre's death to eliminate the Lafrenière.
- According to Bishop, Germain was the second known Sage who became a Templar Grand Master, following Jacques de Molay, as Abstergo Industries suggested.
- Shaun Hastings mentioned that he had one of Germain's silver antiques in his possession, which he used as a paperweight.