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Written by Andrew Roberts These stories are based on characters and settings by Pinnacle Entertainment and Great White


Hatay, 1938 Explosions and muzzle flashes lit the night sky as the Hashashin attacked the Grand Masters camp. Sharpshooters dispatched the advancing Hatay soldiers while Solak and Volkov arrived at the rocks lying near the opposite end of the camp where Danny was waiting with a car. Wheres Buck? he asked when they arrived. I dont know. Volkov replied, He may not have been caught.

Meanwhile, Buck was feeling the intense heat as he was thrown back into the burning tent. The brawny sergeant lumbered in and grabbed him again. Buck punched him in the face three times, but failed to break the mans grip. He felt the sergeants hands tightening around his neck. Gasping for air, he reached for the metal bar hed used to break open the locker and brought it down onto the giants knee. The sergeant let him go as he toppled over, giving Buck the chance to escape. As he ran out, the sergeant quickly followed and tackled him, pinning him to the ground while he delivered more punches.

At the same time, Virginia heard the sounds of the attack and used the switchblade Buck had left to cut the bonds on her hands. As she left the tent, an officer noticed her leaving and reached for his Mauser C96. Thinking quickly, she hurled the knife. The officer screamed as the blade entered his leg, while Virginia punched him out and grabbed the Mauser. Back at the Colonels tent, Buck managed to grab the sergeants fist while throwing him off with a suplex. He quickly leapt to his feet and kicked the soldier in the chest before tackling him into the burning tent, which promptly collapsed. Two soldiers approached with rifles, but Virginia quickly ran out from behind another tent and dispatched them both with her Mauser. Come on, lets get out of here. Buck said as he got back to his feet. The pair quickly fled the camp and arrived at Dannys car, where Volkov and Solak were waiting. Danny hugged his sister as they arrived. Youre late Buck. Danny said, looking at his watch. I had to help out with the campfire. Buck replied, removing the desert gear he was wearing over his regular clothing and picking up his fedora from the back seat of the car.

Im glad youre not hurt. he said to Virginia. Relax Danny. She replied, Id been pulled out before the hotel blew up. A few of the toughs were still inside though. Either way, we need to get moving. Volkov interrupted. Yes, Buck added, I got the map, so lets find the Watchtower. I believe that Mr Volkov has the key. Volkov quickly turned to Buck as they climbed into Dannys car. How did you find out? he asked. I heard the Grand Master mention it. Buck replied.

Following the Templars map, the group arrived at a large watchtower overlooking a mighty canyon. There was a small path leading down to the cliff face. As Danny brought the car to a halt, Virginia noticed a truck parked near the tower. Colonel Tariks men are already here. She whispered to the others. Buck drew his Webley as he cautiously moved towards the entrance to the watchtower. As he approached, Colonel Tarik appeared with his revolver drawn. Ill take the key from Volkov. He demanded. Buck turned to see several soldiers emerging from the truck. Volkov produced the key and handed it to Tarik. The Grand Master stood behind him. Open the door. He ordered. Tarik handed the key to Marino, who cautiously ascended the flight of steps leading to the door of the watchtower. He inserted the key in the door and turned it. The sound of an elaborate mechanism was heard. The steps crumbled away from beneath his feet. Marino screamed as he plummeted through the hole. While the other Templars were distracted, Solak rolled a hand grenade underneath their truck. The explosion destroyed the truck while the other adventurers fled down to the path along the cliff face. The Grand Master fired at them with his pistol, hitting Solak in the chest. Buck stopped to check on him.

Go on without me! Solak ordered, You need to get the Lance! He coughed up blood and collapsed. Buck turned and fled down the path along the cliff.

The path along the side of the cliff was narrow and treacherous as Buck and his companions shimmied across it. The trio were astounded by Volkovs ability to move a rapid pace along the path. Eventually, they came across an entrance to a cave. As they entered, they found themselves wrapped in dark shadows. Danny produced a stick from his backpack with a brightly glowing tip. This should help. He said, The Doc left me a few sticks with his luminescent paint. The group continued through the tunnel. Soon, the rough, cavernous walls gave way to masonry. The sound of footsteps echoed behind the group. Theyre coming! Volkov hissed to the others. Crouching behind the rocks, Buck and Virginia noticed four Hatay soldiers advancing through the cave, accompanied by Colonel Tarik and the Grand Master. Noticing the group, they opened fire. Buck drew his Webley and ejected the spent cartridges. While he reloaded, Virginia fired at the soldiers with her Mauser to keep them behind cover, hitting two of them. One of the soldiers moved forward with an MP18 submachine gun and fired a burst, sending Buck and Virginia back behind the rocks. At the same time, Colonel Tarik attempted to move forward. Buck rapidly emerged and shot the gunner with his Webley, while Volkov shot the fourth soldier with his Nagant. Get moving! he ordered, Ill cover you! Virginia and Danny had already made their way into the tower. Buck and Volkov were not far behind. As they moved, they noticed several loose bricks in the floor, taking care not to stand on them. A large spiked gate was hidden behind the doorway. Tarik followed the group into the watchtower. As he slowly moved in, he stepped on one the loose bricks. The gate swung shut, impaling him on the spikes. The Grand Master pushed the gate back into position and continued down the hall. Meanwhile, Bucks companions had reached the end of the corridor. All that was in sight was a ladder leading up to a trapdoor. Climbing up, they found themselves on the ground floor of the watchtower. Segmented areas lined one half of the room, but there was no way to reach the next floor. A small altar with three candles lay at the opposite end to the segmented tiles. A tapestry

hung on the wall behind the altar, bearing an image of the sun above the middle candle. Latin inscription appeared above it.

When Gods light is brought to the Tower of Longinus, his successor shall claim his Spear. Volkov read aloud. Buck pondered the message for a moment before pulling a book of matches from his shirt pocket. He lit the middle candle and a rumbling sound was heard. The segmented areas near the wall slowly ascended from the ground, forming a flight of steps leading up to the staircase.

The group proceeded up the spiral staircase to the upper floor of the tower. The Spear had been mounted on the wall. Another Latin inscription was on the wall. Volkov read it again. He who removes the Lance of Longinus must ascend the watchtower and leap to God. He translated. And it will be I who takes the Spear. A voice said behind them. Buck turned around to see the Grand Master standing behind them with his pistol. Drop the guns. Buck and his friends complied to the request, kicking the guns over the floor.

I believe that it is Mr Volkov who wants the Spear the most. The Grand Master continued, So he should have the honour of removing it. Volkov slowly walked towards the Spear and removed it from its hook. Almost immediately, the hooks retracted into the wall, and the steps leading up to the room ascended to the floor, sealing the room off. However, they continued to ascend, forming a new staircase leading up to the roof of the tower. You must prove yourself to take the Spear. The Grand Master taunted. Volkov walked up the staircase and found himself on the roof. Looking over the battlements, he saw Hatay soldiers assembling near the foot of the tower. Theres no way out. The Grand Master continued. Hesitating, Volkov handed the Spear to the Grand Master. As soon as he saw the gun being lowered, he delivered a kick to the Templars abdomen, knocking him backwards. Buck ran up and grabbed the Spear, attempting to wrest it from the Grand Masters hands. While scuffling, the Grand Master was able to pull off a spinning movement which knocked Buck away into Virginia and Danny. At the same time, he grabbed Volkov and flung him over the battlements. The soldiers on the ground opened fire in an attempt to hit him. Buck was able to grab his revolver and aimed it at the Grand Master, who simply knocked it out of his hand with the Lance. Virginia quickly grabbed it and fired a wild shot, hitting the Grand Master in the chest. As he slumped back, he removed his helm, revealing the face of Sir Delmars banker. Gumboldt! Buck exclaimed, Youre the Grand Master? Its the perfect cover isnt it? Gumboldt sneered. It was the best way to avoid detection; pretending that I worked for Delmar when he actually worked for me. I thought I could rebuild the Templars order. We had the European kings in our pocket, through the wealth of our members to lend out at our will. Philip the Fair unjustly dismantled us so he could have our lands and our money. My death will not stop the Templars from returning. Events have been set into motion which cannot be prevented. As he spoke, Gumboldt began to cough before falling silent. Virginia and Danny approached him. He immediately came round and attacked them with a knife, slashing Dannys arm. At the same time, Volkov leapt over the battlements and kicked Gumboldt in the back. They both grabbed the Spear, but Volkov was able to fling the Grand Master over the battlements. The group watched him plummet from the tower down the cliff to his death. How do we get out of here then? Virginia asked. We take the airship. Buck replied smugly. The others looked at him in a puzzled way, and then saw it: A large zeppelin was flying towards the tower. A large lightning gun attached to the bottom was fired at the soldiers, destroying the trucks and forcing them to retreat.

Step aboard my new transport service! Doc Gold called from the gondola, lowering a rope ladder. The group quickly ascended and made it into the gondola. As soon as Volkov passed up the Lance and reeled in the ladder, Doc was piloting the zeppelin away from the tower. As they made their way back to England, Buck noticed Volkov brooding at the window. Whats troubling you Volkov? he asked. My family and people have been made to suffer by Stalin. He explained, Ever since we collaborated with the Tsar, he has brought us misery. My dream was to claim the Lance for my people and show Stalin that the Cossacks were still valuable. Volkov, Buck said, You have won. The Lance is yours. Virginia and Danny reacted in shock to Bucks words. We couldnt have recovered it without you. You have earned the right to take it. Volkov nodded and took the Lance. The group watched his disembark as they reached Antakya. You let him take the Lance? Virginia asked Buck in amazement. He has suffered enough from a choice his people made a long time ago. But he is not my concern: The Templars plan may succeed. The Nazis will enter Poland. When we get to England, Im enlisting. I have the feeling that America will be reluctant to join a war in Europe. He explained. Youre concerned about politics? Virginia asked. I am now. Buck replied, And I have been thinking about another question Ive been saving for over ten years. What is that? Buck turned to Virginia and produced ring from his pocket, presenting it to her. She was overcome. Of course! she cried out in joy. Doc turned and smiled to Buck in a silent congratulation as he remained at the helm, piloting the zeppelin into the sunset.