A/N: wordswithout asked me to write her an AC story. I did, on the spot.

The first two paragraphs of this is that story.

You're falling and catching on and dodging bullets and then you're lying in a cool, soft bed with a young woman looking at you and then you've been stabbed once but that's fine because you've stabbed the guy a lot more than that and there's blood absolutely everywhere. (The room is so white and clean you feel like you're messing it up just by breathing.) You're slamming your palm against somebody's skull and leaping away so fast they he doesn't know what hit him, and the city is spread out around you all snaking streets and unnamed corners. (The windows are translucent but it looks like there might be buildings out there, fuzzy and white.) You're dropping into the bureau at night after a long day, and the exhilaration trails after you like shouts. (You're dragging yourself into bed knowing that it's not really sleep that happens there, it's freaky neon visions burned into your retinas.)

It's confusing being Desmond Miles. It's probably confusing being Altair ibn-La'Ahad too, but Desmond's not sure which is worse.

He's laughing with his brother and then he's looking down at the wounds and thinking (This isn't me. He shakes his head and climbs out.) He sword-dances, parrying flash and silver flash as he learns new ways. (He looks down at his hands and thinks about the walk from one bed to another. That's all the exercise he gets.) He's in the pope's palace tracking across gold-filigree floors and holding the pronged staff of office and swinging around to break truth like a mirror (He's sitting up and tasting copper in his mouth and Lucy is wearing a thin, pleased smile, like she knows what's going on. He's giving to his captors and doesn't even mean to, but these symbols he's chasing keep mapping themselves out behind his eyes and demanding to be written. What's Aspergo doing? What do they want?)

It's confusing being Desmond Miles. It's slightly less confusing being Ezio Auditore, because the assassin just doesn't care what's going on all that much.

He's eating a cheeseburger with a little square of tofu on the side, which is slightly disturbing because if he needs extra protein then what's in the burger? (She's sliding across a rooftop with the moonlight highlighting the helmet of the samurai guard below her.) He's trying not to write the symbols down, because he's got nothing to write on except his hands. (She's pushing a stiletto-thin blade into the hard palette of a sleeping warlord.) He's pacing across the floor, feeling like he should just move but there's nothing to fling himself off and he might not know how to land anyway (she knows how to land, and she twists with one foot touching the rooftop for just a moment, and then she backflips into a pile of hay before grabbing a guard's ankle and pulling him in, slitting his throat from ear to ear before he has a chance to realize there was somebody hidden there.

It's confusing being Desmond Miles. It's really confusing being Yuriko Arisashi, but he tends not to notice at the time when the memories are actively running.

Genetic memory. Encryption. He can't move his legs because the half-moon shaped parts on either side of his kneecap hurt too much. He's been lying here for weeks. (His ancestor juggles a knife and laughs at the wide eyes of children and laughs at the slit throats of men who want to be gods.) Codes. 'A' equals this squiggle and 'B' equals this constellation of dots and "the meaning of life" equals just sixteen of the sigils tacked together…(Street dust and a man slams his fist against his face and they're screaming names that, are probably obscene but he isn't sure he doesn't know this language or does he he wakes up and then this language what's it called again, English) Lucy thinks he's sleeping but he's found how to get into her computer. (Hidden blade, snap! The bloody stubs of their fingers touch for a moment as the master assassin's knife thunks into the wood and he's one of them now, blood of their blood) And he's gone, finally, in a building where the windows aren't blanked out, and the glyphs are spelling out death-bringer, and the only stone he has to cut the runes in is his skin-

It's very confusing being Subject Sixteen.