"Who is Aletheia" is a collection of files documented by Layla Hassan in 2018 on her research on the Isu along with fellow Assassin Alannah Ryan.
So, the Isu, aka Precursors or "those who came before." They're humanoid and they're ancient. They have triple-helix DNA and six primary senses.
Sometimes individual Isu say they aren't, but usually they act like they are. They like to give themselves god names anyway.
LH: Wait, weren't the ancient gods named after them?
AR: It's a sort of chicken and egg situation. We know that the Isu had other names before they took on the ones we know. Like Juno was also called Uni.
LH: And just to check, Aletheia's not a goddess name, is it?
AR: You got it, boss. It literally means "truth," but if you ask Heidegger (well not literally, he's dead), it means the disclosure of truth. He dedicated huge chunks of philosophy to defining exactly what that meant.
LH: What's the short version?
AR: Aletheia is "unconcealedness," as opposed to correspondence (which is truth as accurate definitions of reality) or coherence (which is truth as statements that are consistent with the rest of a reality).
LH: Ok, I think I'll leave the philosophy to you while I handle tech. Deal?
AR: Works for me.
The Capitoline Isu
Those three scientists who formed a team to save the world from being destroyed by a solar flare. They were like superheroes with ulterior motives.
Jupiter and Minerva appeared to sympathize with humans, but really only seemed to make a move after the Toba Catastrophe nearly snuffed us out. Juno was in it for the Isu, but mostly for herself.
LH: One of those world-saving solutions was the Eye that killed Desmond, wasn't it?
AR: Exactly. It worked short-term, but long-term seems more iffy. If "iffy" is a word you can use when you're talking about the end of the world as we know it.
LH: Aletheia did seem to imply that reality was shifting. Or that multiple realities were shifting as calculations were made.
So one of the most powerful Isu was Juno. She raised an army of followers trying to help her and her husband Aita get bodies. She wanted to move out of "the gray," or a virtual existence in some kind of spiritual-tech hybrid afterlife.
LH: And the Phoenix Project was going to do just that. The plan was so dangerous that neither the Assassins nor Templars could take it on alone. So we teamed up... for a while.
AR: Layla, I heard about your colleague Charlotte de la Cruz. I'm sorry.
LH: So am I.
AR: Weird question... So I know Mr. Berg used some special explosive to make sure there wasn't any DNA left. But wouldn't there be some trace of the Koh-i-Noor? I mean, you'd think some shards of such a powerful artifact would have survived.
LH: Alannah, when Berg blows something up, he blows it up with extreme prejudice. That site is sterilized.
AR: So another weird question... How did Kiyoshi, Galina, and Arend get away then?
LH: Too soon, Alannah. Too soon.
The god Hermes (particularly in the form of Hermes Trismegistus) was all about magic and alchemy, and his staff is the inspiration for the caduceus.
In theory, he met Pythagoras and gave him his staff.
LH: We're betting a lot on that theory. We've extrapolated that the staff is the key to the Isu "equations of reality" theory.
Based on the information we got in Egypt, the Isu are convinced that understanding the mathematical rules of the universe is the basis to changing it.
AR: Are you convinced?
LH: I'm convinced it might be true. And that's enough to make that staff very powerful and very, very dangerous.
So who is Aletheia? She (that's a guess, I didn't record her using any pronouns) called herself that. She has a grudge against the rest of the Isu for their godlier-than-thou attitude.
The Isu unified front showed cracks before, like that time Minerva and Juno argued in front of Desmond, or when Consus reached through time to contact the Assassins behind Juno's back.
But this is a new level of insubordination.
LH: Fortunately for us, Aletheia seems to be on humanity's side.
LH: I only wish I could do that kind of multitasking.
AR: If anyone could, it would be you, boss.
AR: Yeah, she reminds me of Martin Luther, nailing his 95 Theses to a church door. Maybe this is the start of the great Isu schism.
LH: You've got a knack for naming things, you know that?
AR: Thanks, boss.
LH: Besides, she's a hacker. I like her.
AR: Hacking? Is that what she was doing to the retransmissions?
LH: Sorry, I realize that's more my department than yours. You heard the voice change, right? That's when the retransmission got hacked, replaced right under the other Isu's metaphorical nose.
AR: How do you think she it?
LH: Good question. If you want to brute force the problem, try all the security protocols until you find one that works. Then lock everyone else out so they can't undo your work. Or if you're an analog, get a stronger transmitter Mexican-radio-style.
Aletheia's big advantage is having all the time in the world to find a solution. Like Consus, she seems to be able to see multiple times at once and communicate across them.
AR: Or multiple realities.
The Equations of Reality theory posits that the nature of the universe is dictated by mathematical equations, and that someone who can understand these equations can rewrite reality.
The Isu seem to have mastered checking the equations. After all, Minerva and Juno told us they ran all kinds of simulations to figure out how to save civilization from planet-scorching solar flares.
But have they reached the stage where they can rewrite the equations? And now that we have the Staff of Hermes Trismegistus, have we?
LH: If you want to think in that direction... If the Isu already knew how to rewrite thr equations, would we realize it? Pythagoras was part of the Isu bloodline. What if he managed it and didn't realize, or forgot how? What if this is the simulation?
AR: You've held the staff, boss, and you're one of the bloodline too. What if you already changed everything?
LH: That's basilisk territory.
AR: I don't think Herodotos mentioned a basilisk anywhere...
LH: The Roko's Basilisk. It's a thought experiment. If an artificial intelligence was omniscient, it would know who its enemies were. It could also eventually figure out how to transcend time. Do you follow me?
AR: I think? Sounds creepy.
LH: Nice knowing you, Alannah. You have already pissed off the all-knowing time-travelling basilisk.
AR: So, you're saying we have to watch out for things we can't watch out for?
LH: I'm saying, from now on, we have to tread very carefully.