At a rap at the door, Thomas stood from the kitchen table to answer it. Like every morning, he ate breakfast beside Elizabeth in her overly pink kitchen before the monotony of the day began. Her father was rarely home, respecting the couple's wish to be alone together, choosing instead to be on business elsewhere.
"Who could that be?" Elizabeth asked as she poured herself a cup of tea while he left the kitchen, heading down the hall.
Thomas shrugged. He opened the door to reveal a postman.
"I was told to give this to you directly." He said, passing a letter over. "You are Thomas Young, right?"
"I am." Thomas confirmed, taking it.
"Good day to you. Sir, Madame." He nodded to Thomas and Elizabeth who approached them before leaving.
"Sounds important." She remarked as Thomas looked over the envelope, closing the door behind him.
"Mhm." He murmured as he opened it, noting the assassin symbol on the top of the letter.
"The British Brotherhood?" She asked as they stepped back into the kitchen.
"No, the Caribbean one." He replied, standing beside the table.
He was silent for a while as he read. Painfully silent.
"Well, what does it say?" She asked, trying to read it over his shoulder.
Thomas sat down solidly on the kitchen chair.
"Is it bad?"
"I think you should sit down." Thomas signalled, the letter held away from him as he squeezed the bridge of his nose.
He took a deep breath.
"Thomas, say something." She pleaded, his silence concerning her.
"While I was in the Caribbean, I..." He turned away. "I was with another woman."
Elizabeth bowed her head.
"I understand. You must have been lonely. Just as long as she meant nothing to you, I'm the one you love-"
"She meant a lot to me. She still does."
"You love her?"
"I... I don't know."
Elizabeth shut her eyes as if to will this all away.
"But I don't understand what this has to do with the letter."
"Jemima, the woman back in the Bahamas... She's been sentenced to death for piracy."
"You have some choice in women." She said bitterly, failing to hide her pain.
"And... She's with child."
Elizabeth looked up to Thomas, her eyes wet as she gazed at him.
"Please, don't say it..." She begged.
"And it's mine."
"I have to go back." Was Thomas's first words after Elizabeth had finished sobbing.
"You can't!" She exclaimed, holding her head.
"I must. She's in danger and it's my child."
"Don't leave me for this pirate whore!" She screamed, standing. "Let her die!"
Thomas was taken aback.
"I won't let her die! The child is my responsibility just as much as hers and I couldn't bear it if anything happened to her."
Elizabeth stared down at him, anger replacing her sorrow.
"If you love me, you'll stay. And if you leave, we're over."
Thomas bowed his head. He loved Elizabeth, but his heart longed to return to Jemima.
"Thomas? Answer me!"
"Just, just let me think about this." He stood, one hand gripping the edge of the table, the other holding his face. "I still have contracts to complete for the Brotherhood. Once I complete that, I'll have made up my mind whether to stay or leave."
"Fine." She said, and swept out of the room.
Thomas cursed, hands pulling at his hair before he turned his attention to the letter. With a roar, he tore it to pieces, his fury released in the tiny scraps of paper that floated around the kitchen.
He had to make up his mind soon.
In no mood for breakfast, Thomas collected his notes and left the house there and then, storming towards the Brotherhood. He dressed quickly and rushed out once more, focusing his raw energy on hunting the Templars.
Running across the rooftops, he found his feet to be heavier than normal, his anger weighing him down. Perching on a chimney, he stared out at the city. He couldn't help but feel trapped, despite his physical freedom. Like Jemima, he was imprisoned, conflicting emotions holding him down, pulling him forward.
He leapt down, crashing into a straw pile below, as if the wind rushing past him could clear his head.
Keeping to the shadows, he spotted his target. This man, always cloaked, his face never seen. He had collected information for every suspected Templar in the area, dispatching more assassins to focus in depth on his findings, but this one man, he didn't know.
He walked on and Thomas followed, hiding in the crowd if he took the street way or watching from the rooftops if he followed from above. The man met with another, their voices low as they spoke.
"Must you be so mysterious?" The other man asked, known as Thadias Jones.
"Yes." The cloaked man replied. "Just in case we are followed."
Thomas shrunk further back, in case any suspicions rose.
"I doubt that, sir." Jones assured him. "Please, take down your hood, it's difficult to talk to a man who has his face obscured."
"Very well." He sighed and pulled back his hood.
"Right then, Mr Lovett." Jones continued. "Where to now?"
It was Elizabeth's father. He was a Templar.
He left the scene, tearing across town as he raced back home. He was so stupid! All this time he had spoken of his missions to Elizabeth and her father over dinner, he was telling a Templar!
His feet thundered on, flying through through the streets. When his house came into sight, he didn't slow. Fear struck him to his core as the door swung open, loose on its hinges.
"Elizabeth!" He yelled, stepping into the hallway. "Where are you?"
The house was wrecked. Pictures hung slanted on the walls, chairs and tables were over turned, ceramic plates and cups lay shattered on the floor.
Thomas ran up the stairs, taking three steps at a time. The bedroom was just as bad, if not worse, than the rest of the house. Everything was torn, shattered, ruined. But that wasn't what he was worried about.
"Elizabeth!" He roared, his voice ringing hollow around the ransacked home.
His eyes caught sight of note, pinned to the wall by a knife. Tearing it from the weapon, Thomas read it, hands shaking.
If you wish Miss Lovett to be returned to you, alive, then you will heed our commands. Go to the warehouse by the river Thames. You will need nothing but yourself and the information you possess.
You have until noon.'
Thomas yanked the knife from the wall and studied the hilt.
A Templar cross decorated it, turning his heart to ice. The Templars had Elizabeth.
He made up his mind.
He was staying.