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Benedict Arnold (Assassin's Creed)

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Major General Benedict Arnold was a Patriot, high-ranking and known across Colonial America for being a war hero. That is until he is revealed to be a Loyalist spy who was to deliver West Point fort to Loyalist control, thus making him the worst traitor of the American Revolution and the most notable. He is featured in Assassin's Creed III, as the main antagonist of the Benedict Arnold DLC and the main antagonist of the additional DLC arc, The Tyranny of King Washington Episode 1: The Infamy, where he is portrayed as George Washington's command in the American Frontier.


Early career

Arnold was considered a brave and caring commander. He led the capture of Fort Ticonderoga in New York in May 1775, and was alerted by the Colonial Assassins when it emerged there was a hill overlooking the fort which would prove advantageous to the British if they placed cannons there, prompting a withdrawal. He became a war hero after his leg was crippled at the Second Battle of Saratoga in 1777.

However, Arnold had a propensity for arguing with his superiors, meaning he was often passed over for promotions (although Washington's attitude towards him was favorable). By 1780, when he was given command of West Point, he planned to give up the fort for a payment of £20,000 and a commission as a Brigadier General in the British Army.

Investigation by Connor

In 1780, the Assassin Connor was asked by George Washington to expose a rumored plot to overthrow West Point. Reluctantly agreeing, Connor worked undercover for Washington while flushing out British spies.

Investigating the Major General, Connor eavesdropped on Arnold as he discussed plans with John Anderson – secretly Major John André of the British Army – to deliver a letter to the British General Henry Clinton. Once the conversation ended, Benedict went back to the fort while his associate met up with British Regulars to acquire a uniform.

Confrontation with Connor

Anderson then came back to the fort, but was caught when Connor stopped two Continental soldiers from killing him. Connor then pulled out a note from André's person, which revealed the plans for a sum of twenty thousand pounds to go to Arnold for the fort at West Point.

Unaware he was compromised, Benedict awaited for André's return and also for the Regulars to arrive with his money. However, Connor arrived first and exposed Arnold for the traitor he was, right as the Regulars arrived, to which Benedict fled the fort while the British began their assault.

Defection to the British Army

Although Connor foiled the attack, he failed to reach Arnold, as the latter had sailed away from West Point on the Vulture. Ultimately, Benedict Arnold defected to the British not long after, where he assumed the agreed role of Brigadier General in the British Army. However, as he had not delivered the British the fort, he was only paid £6,000. Arnold also found it hard to shake off his treacherous image, which had superseded that of him as a war hero.

Afterwards, Arnold was spotted leading troops in Connecticut: Connor's apprentices were contracted to kill him during the Battle of Groton Heights, but they did not get close enough. Following Arnold's plot, the Continental Army was placed in an uneasy position, in which they began to question the loyalty of their troops and officers.

Alternate timeline

In an altered reality, where Washington ruled America as a king with an Apple of Eden, Arnold served as his right-hand man with Israel Putnam. Arnold's particular duties involved him supervising the Frontier, and suppressing any resistance, often carting the native people off as laborers. As ruler and representative of the Frontier and King Washington respectively, he is the main antagonist of Episode 1: The Infamy.

He was present during the burning of Kanatahséton, riding at Washington's side. Washington expressed doubts about his resolve and powers, but he was assured by both his generals when they reaffirmed their loyalty.

Arnold also witnessed the duel between his monarch and the Assassin Ratonhnhaké:ton, and after Washington beat him into submission and fired two pistols at his opponent at point-blank range, Arnold handed the king a musket to kill Ratonhnhaké:ton; however, the Assassin survived the encounter.

For the next five months, Arnold ruled over the Frontier in Washington's name from a secluded fort not far from Valley Forge. Arnold eventually discovered the location of the rebellious natives that had aided Ratonhnhaké:ton and sent his men after them. When Arnold's men found and killed the other survivors of the attack on the village, including its clan mother, Ratonhnhaké:ton resolved to track him down and assassinate him.

Following General Putnam from Valley Forge, who had urgent need to speak to Arnold, the Assassin unleashed a bear to distract the guardsmen posted outside Arnold's fortress, and snuck inside.

Arnold was pacing outside the main building when the Assassin took his life. Before he died, Arnold seemed to change and regretted the acts he had done for King Washington. When Ratonhnhaké:ton declared his treachery at West Point deserved this reprisal, Arnold denied ever setting foot in West Point.

Grabbing the Assassin's arm, he confirmed Washington's power to control came from his scepter, and he urged his killer to go to Boston and find Benjamin Franklin to defeat the Mad King. However, he said that Franklin needed to be freed from something first.

Yet, despite the Assassin's questions as to what he needed to be freed from, Arnold was unable to answer, and died from his wounds. Afterwards, Putnam captured the rebel, and sardonically remarked that it was a shame Arnold died, and then said that he was taking Ratonhnhaké:ton to Boston, to present him as a gift to the King.

Arnold's final words set in motion the search for Benjamin Franklin and, by extension, the downfall of King Washington.

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