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- "Bayek, Caesar has been assassinated. Septimius is also dead. I have founded a bureau in the middle of Rome, yet no one knows of our existence. Like Amun, we are... the Hidden Ones."
- ―Aya detailing the successful formation of the Roman bureau in her letter to Bayek, 43 BCE.[src]
The Roman Brotherhood of Assassins, also known as the Hidden Ones during its early years and later as the Liberalis Circulum, was the branch of Assassins which operated throughout the territory controlled by Rome during the era of the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire.
It was one of the first branches of the Hidden Ones, who would later become the Assassin Brotherhood, and was founded by the Greco-Egyptian Hidden One Aya, shortly after she had founded the organization in Egypt alongside her husband, the Medjay Bayek. Centuries later, the branch was revived as the Italian Brotherhood of Assassins.
Foundation as the Hidden Ones
- Aya: "I have assembled a group. This is Brutus and Cassius. Our Roman brothers."
- Phoxidas: "We're going to cut these bastards down from across the seas. Septimius and Caesar."
- ―Aya and Phoxidas introducing Bayek to their Roman recruits, 47 BCE.[src]
In 47 BCE, the Medjay Bayek and his wife, Aya, who were on a quest of vengeance against the Order of the Ancients for the death of their son Khemu and had formed a network of people opposing the Ancients and supporting the Egyptian Queen Cleopatra, were betrayed by the Roman general Julius Caesar and Cleopatra, who were influenced by the Order. While Bayek tracked down and killed the Order's leader, Flavius Metellus, Aya recruited the Roman Senators Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus, enemies of Caesar, to their cause, determined to leave for Rome to combat the Order there. Before leaving, Bayek and Aya named their new brotherhood the Hidden Ones, laying out the foundation of the Creed and their customs.
While Bayek established a bureau in Memphis, Aya set sail across the Tyrrhenian Sea towards Rome, accompanied by Damastes and Phoxidas. In 46 BCE, their ship was attacked by a Roman fleet, but they successfully managed to sink the ships and made port in Antium shortly afterwards. From there, Aya made her way to Rome and established a bureau there.
Aya founded the Roman branch of the Hidden Ones, and aside from Brutus and Cassius, also recruited several other Roman Senators, as well as the Roman philosopher Publius Volumnius. The Roman Senators that would take part in the conspiracy against Caesar referred to themselves as Liberatores.
Later on, Lugos, who would create a group of Roman Assassins known as the Liberalis Circulum, traveled to Egypt to recover two Pieces of Eden, the Ankh and the Scepter of Aset, which had been found in a pyramid by Roman plunderers. However, while carrying the two artefacts aboard his ship back to Rome across the Mediterranean Sea, a terrible storm opened an enormous waterway within the ship, causing it to sink. Before his demise, Lugos recorded a message with the Ankh, detailing the ongoing events and lamenting the failure of his mission.
Assassination of Julius Caesar
- "[Caesar] has created his own private senate, filled with deceivers, manipulators, people who have no business in Roman affairs. My brothers are eager for blood, but I am not certain I can spill it."
- ―Marcus Junius Brutus on Julius Caesar, c. 44 BCE.[src]
By 44 BCE, Julius Caesar had become the new head of the Order of the Ancients, with Lucius Septimius as his right hand, and even considering him the Father of Understanding. With Aya as their leader, Brutus and Cassius spearheaded a conspiracy with thirty-eight other Roman Senators, who were also all secretly Hidden Ones and opposed Caesar's imperialist ideals after he was appointed dictator for life. After being assigned by Cassius as the one to come up with the plan of assassinating Caesar, Brutus designated a Temple of Juno preceding a sealed Isu Vault as a meeting place for his co-conspirators. Having received visions of Caesar's future assassination within the vault, Brutus was further motivated and scheduled their attack for the Ides of March.
On 15 March 44 BCE, Aya, Brutus and Cassius went to the Theatre of Pompey where the Roman Senate was to convene. While Brutus and Cassius went to the curia, Aya fought and killed Septimius, before joining her brothers in the Senate. Aya was the first one to strike at Caesar, followed by the Roman Senators. Caesar resisted at first, but resigned himself to his fate upon recognizing Brutus. Shortly after, Aya adopted the name Amunet.
Driven to severe guilt from his actions, Brutus later returned to the Colosseum, and abandoned the dagger he had used to strike down Caesar within the vault, along with his heirloom armor and the scrolls describing his dreams and discovery of the vault, as well as include drawings of the chamber and its pedestal.
Attempted resurrection of Brutus
- "Whatever power lies within this artifact, it has not returned our Brother to us."
- ―Publius Volumnius commenting on the failed resurrection of Brutus.[src]
After the assassination, the Senate passed an amnesty on the Hidden Ones, which was proposed by Caesar's friend and co-consul Marcus Antonius. Nonetheless, uproar among the population forced Brutus and Cassius to flee from Rome, and a civil war ensued.
In 42 BCE, armies under the command of Marcus Antonius and Octavian clashed with those of Brutus and Cassius at the Battle of Philippi in Macedonia, and Cassius was killed in the ensuing battle. Faced with inevitable defeat, Brutus fled and committed suicide shortly thereafter.
After Brutus' death, his fellow Hidden Ones gathered in Philippi, Macedonia and tried to reanimate him using a Shroud of Eden. Since they had never used it before, the Hidden Ones feared its effects, but nevertheless wrapped Brutus in the cloth. Though the corpse opened its eyes and moved its arms, it neither breathed nor reacted to any touch, and eventually fell still in a seeming "second death".
As some of the Hidden Ones wept, Brutus was wrapped instead in a burial mantle, and the Shroud was returned to its wooden storage box.
- "The power of this artifact has yet to be uncovered, but the object itself possesses a strong symbolic value for our circle..."
- ―Lucius to his son Aquilus about the Ankh, in a message recorded by the artifact, 259.[src]
In 27 BCE, the Roman Republic had been transformed into the Roman Empire by Octavian. The third Emperor who reigned over this new empire, Caligula, was influenced by the Ancients. This turned him into a target for the Hidden One Leonius, who stabbed him in 41 AD.
Finding the Ankh
By 259 AD, a group of Hidden Ones operated as the Liberalis Circulum (Circle of Liberals) from the city of Lugdunum. The Roman proto-Assassin Lucius tasked the Aleman Accipiter with obtaining a Precursor artifact known as the Ankh. Lucius' son Aquilus, who was also a cousin of Accipiter, was tasked with assassinating two Generals and a Senator, and then ordered to retrieve the artifact in Accipiter's possession. However, as Aquilus reached his third target, the General Gracchus, his intent was discovered and he was stabbed by his own target. Fortunately for the Hidden One, Aquilus was saved by his cousin, who gave him the Ankh, which had been finally recovered, centuries after Lugos' death. The Gaul took back the artifact to his father in Lugdunum, but it was then stolen by the Hidden Ones' ancestral enemies, with Caïus Fulvus Vultur killing Aquilus' father, Lucius.
Aquilus tracked Vultur to Rome, where he eliminated him and his fellow conspirators, and retrieved the artifact. Later, the arrest and execution of Aquilus was ordered by the prefect of his home city, but even after Aquilus' death, the artifact was successfully hidden. It was this same Prefect with whom Cuervo, an Iberian Hidden One sent to preserve the Circle's interests in Lugdunum from the Germanic armies raiding the Empire, and Accipiter were negotiating the spare of the Roman city in exchange for a significant tribute to the Alemanni.
After Accipiter negotiated a truce with the Prefect of Lugdunum on behalf of the Alemanni, he attempted to rescue Aquilus, who was killed by Roman guards during Accipiter's ambush. Accipiter left the Ankh in the care of Aquilus' wife Valeria.
- Aya (Egyptian Brotherhood)
- Gaius Cassius Longinus
- Marcus Junius Brutus
- Publius Volumnius
- 38 other senators involved in Caesar's assassination
Allies and puppets
- The Roman branch of the Assassins was first introduced in the Assassin's Creed comic series published by Les Deux Royaumes with the Latin name Liberalis Circulum. Presented in the accusative case, this is grammatically incorrect because the nominative form of Liberalis Circulus should have been used.
- Assassin's Creed – The Ankh of Isis Trilogy (ambiguously canonical appearance)
- Assassin's Creed: Project Legacy
- Assassin's Creed: Origins
- ↑ Assassin's Creed: Last Descendants
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Assassin's Creed: Origins
- ↑ Assassin's Creed: Syndicate – Database: Reconstructed Data 011
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Assassin's Creed: Project Legacy – Rome: Chapter 2 – Giovanni Borgia
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 Assassin's Creed 3: Accipiter
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Assassin's Creed: Project Legacy – Holidays: Chapter 1 – Ghosts of Christmas Past
- ↑ Assassin's Creed II
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 Assassin's Creed 2: Aquilus
- ↑ Assassin's Creed 1: Desmond
- ↑ Darby McDevitt's Twitter
- ↑ Assassin's Creed Unity: Abstergo Entertainment – Employee Handbook