|Castell dels Sants|
|Appearance||Broken Sword: The Serpent's Curse|
Castells dels Sants is Tiago Marqués’ family house in Catalonia, Spain. He used to live with his father, Xavier Marqués, and his mother, Maria de Santos, before the Fascists broke into the home in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War. Ramon, the family's servant, used to take care of the family before the war and now guards the house from intruders.
Castells dels Sants means “Castle of Saints” in Catalan.
Broken Sword: The Serpent's Curse
After gathering some information about “La Maledicció”, George and Nico discover that the painting is in fact a coded map to the location of the Tabula Veritatis, an ancient artefact which Father Simeon had claimed could raise de Devil. And for which he, and others, had already been murdered.
The map guides them to Catalonia, Spain where this Castell is located. As they arrive to the premises of the Castel, they think it is deserted but soon discover that someone is not going to let them in so easily. As soon as they go near the main entrance, someone starts shooting at them. After Nico manages to make a diversion for the shooter with her special mop, George is able to reach into the house’s courtyard. This is when he realizes he’s made it without getting shot, but he sure doesn’t feel lucky. Somehow George has to distract the sniper again, and this time he is on his own with a ghost from the past giving him an evil stare. Luckily, the evil goat is tied.
After dealing with the Goat, George notices a side view mirror of a near old car glinting in the sun and gives George and idea on how to draw away the shooter’s attention. By placing the mirror in a particular angle to reflect the glare of the sun, he is able to aim the light to the window the gunman is positioned. George is then able to go near the house.
Here he is able to speak to the shooter who is determined to shoot any intruder that comes near the property. George tries to communicate the old man that he only wants to check the house in hopes to find something really important and he is not an enemy. The sniper tells George he is not going to let anyone hurt Señor Marqués. To George’s surprise, Tiago Marqués is alive. Moments later when he explains the man he is Marques’ friend, a woman points a gun at George and asks him to come with her. He quickly clarifies that he has been helping a man called Marqués in Paris and shows her “La Maledicció”. The woman, who happens to be Tiago’s daughter – Eva Sanchez, lets both George and Nico into the house.
Once inside, Eva explains her father that someone is looking for him and surprises Marqués by giving him back the painting he wanted so eagerly to see again. Meanwhile George tries to decipher the painting’s secrets, Eva decides to keep watch outside and shoot any intruders on sight. Tiago tells George that before her mother died, she told him that once painting hung in the fireplace of the house again its meaning would become clear and the route of the Tabula Veritatis would be revealed. Unfortunately, the room has changed and Marqués doesn’t know what is missing. George helps Tiago decipher what is needed to reveal the painting’s secrets and manages to find a secret Gnostic Chapel inside a hidden path in the fireplace.
Following the long and dark stairs, George and Marqués find themselves inside what it looks like an ancient sanctuary. Tiago Marqués’ family Gnostic chapel. It’s not like any chapel George’s ever seen, there is no altar, no crucifix and no Christian symbols. A large painting covers the far wall of the chapel. The fresco is surrounded by dusty inscriptions (See in Trivia) and depicts the journey of Tiago’s ancestors - the Cathars, and their escape from the hilltop fortress of Montségur with the "Tabula Veritatis" from under the very noses of the soldiers of the Albigensian Crusade. Each of the escaping Cathars is carrying a Tabula to hide the real destination. Only a Gnostic would know the right one. On both ends of the fresco, two pillars similar to the ones seen in “La Maledicció” stand representing Jehovah and Lucifer (See in Trivia). Both statues hold a glass wheel divided into six colors which can be rotated. Part of the lens is covered a small leather cover, when taken off it is revealed a crude crystal lens. Colored light from the rotating glass wheel is refracted by the lens onto the fresco. On the middle of the chamber, a candelabrum holding a single candle. George proceeds to light the candle. When two particular colors from the statues’ crystal lens are refracted on the wall painting, Tiago’s old family medallion can be used in front of the candelabrum to show a light path in the fresco. The path of the Bons Hommes, the good men. The sacred trail Marqués’ ancestors took across the Pyrenees, carrying the Tabula Veritatis. From Montségur across the mountains to an unknown town whose coat of arms, later in the story, helps George decipher is “Berga”.
Meanwhile George and Marqués walk into the fireplace to investigate a secret pathway, Nico finds a burnt piece of paper near to it that reads “Wolfram”. As soon as Ramon, the old family’s friend and loyal servant, hears that word he tells Nico he cursed that name forever. Their soldiers came here - brought their bloody war to this house and killed Señor Xavier, Tiago Marqués’ father, and his friend, Hernandez. They were searching for something but they only brought death with them. Gehnen, their leader and company’s owner, then disappeared to library. He spent weeks in there making notes and studying maps. His men crossed the whole of Catalonia searching for something. One day Gehnen just vanished and never came back. A few years later Ramon returned and cleaned the place up. It broke his heart and he locked the library because he could not bear to touch Gehnen's papers. Ramon has kept it locked to honor the memory of Señor Xavier. That evening when he locked it up, Ramon drank to the memory of Señor Xavier. The cellars were well stocked and it was a long night. He hid the key and then forgot where he put it, so it’s been lost since then. All he can remember is waking up in the old car. Nico needs to find out what Gehnen had been working on in that library.
Moments later, she heads to the front courtyard where the old family car was left since the Fascists invaded the property. The old car is riddled with bullet holes and though the dashboard seems intact, this old family car would never drive again. The floor of the car was littered with keys from sardine cans probably from where Ramon got all the cans for the wind-chime located near the Castell’s main entrance. Underneath a pillow in the nearest sit there is an old book which happens to be Ramon’s diary. By reading the content of the book, Nico discovers he was going to find a safe place to hide the key not before he’d eaten. She is sure this will help her discover they location of the Library’s key. After taking a look around the premises of the house, Nico sees the old wind-chime hanged near a window and one old sardine can is bulging slightly. She fishes around only to find the well-needed key. Once inside, Ramon had been true to his word because the place looks a shrine.
After finally finding the library’s key to be able to see Gehnen’s papers, Nico asks George to take “La Maledicció” with him. Tiago is not going to let anything happen to the painting again, so he requests Eva to go with George so she can take good care of it. Once in the library they learn, thanks to a map founded inside Gehnen’s trunk (See in Trivia), a connection between some relevant places of Catalonia and “La Maledicció” that in a specific order show the location of the “Tabula Veritatis”: Montserrat. After discovering this breakthrough Richard Langham appears on the scene, exposed now as Gehnen’s grandson, with Tiago Marqués being held captive. Langham now knows where the Tabula is located and plans to take Marqués with him to Montserrat. He leaves Nico, George and Eva locked inside the library with no way out. Luckily, thanks to a shoot from Langham’s gun to a wall of the room, a dim of light is exposed meaning that this particular part of wall is fake or hidden door. George inspects it and finds a secret mechanism which opens a hidden passage outside the property. Once outside, they all agree to travel to Montserrat’s train station to follow Langham’s footsteps and save Tiago Marqués’ life.
Later in the story during the flight to Eden, George has a dream which takes place inside the Gnostic Chapel inside the Castell. Marqués’ spirit is seen here along with Father Simeon and Wilfred Hobbs. Tiago has come to George in a spiritual form to bring him some advices on how to defeat Langham. The three ghosts don’t agree in anything the other say, but they try to give George a meaningful and helping advice. Marqués tells George to “Maintain the harmony and protect the balance. Because he has the answer in his hands.” George doesn’t understand this last sentence and he quickly wakes up from what it looks like a daydream, only to find himself holding Marqués’ old medallion on his left hand.
- George: “I was having a powerful sense of déjà vu. I never have got on with goats"
- George: “A candelabrum holding a single candle. Just what this place needed; a bit of mood lighting. If only I had a few scatter cushions.”
- Until Eva came to Catalonia she knew nothing about the Castell. She's never been here before - in fact Marqués never even talked about the place.
- Ramon has lived in the Castel all his live, his father was served here before him.
- Outside the Castell:
- The mountains make a magnificent backdrop to the Castell. Shame the place is left to fall apart.
- According to the sundial in the Castell’s courtyard it was mid-afternoon-ish. From the dial George can see that the main doors of the house face north.
- The fountain near the entrance has stopped working long ago.
- Ramon’s old diary reads: “The library will forever be a shrine. No one will enter. i shall hide the key in a safe place once I’ve eaten. I have just what I need, and know what to do.” “Oh beautiful lady, your eyes are so blue. I just can't stop thinking of you. Our lives are entwined, like ivy on a tree. That is what. You mean to me.” Ramon has lived in the Castel all his live, his father was served here before him. There is a crate of brandy amongst the mess in the great hall, apparently Ramon drank them all. Must have been some night.
- Inside the Castell:
- Two carved trees near the fireplace bear a remarkable resemblance to the ones in Simeon's notes. The stone fireplace is old and dusty. It looks like it had lain undisturbed for decades. The fireplace is imposing, and now "La Maledicció" hangs from it. The plinths near the painting look like they can be rotated.
- The bookcase in the main hall holds an assortment of ancient books.
- A collection of what could only be described as "stuff" is near the bookcase. There is a crate of brandy amongst all the mess.
- They are shields on which heraldic symbols had been painted hanged along the wall in the main entrance. Each shield has a scroll below them which read: Lloret de Mar, Roses, Bascara, Berga, Olot, Figueres, Tremp, El Pont de Suert, Puigcerda, and Girona.
- Inside the Gnostic chapel:
- George’s Latin is a little rusty, but He can still translate the inscriptions on the Fresco. "Ex Igne Puritas" - From Fire, Purity. "Ex Luce Veritas" - From Light, Truth. "Ex Labore Sapientia" - From Struggle, Knowledge.
- Tiago Marqués tells George the story of his ancestors. They lived in the South of France in the 12th century, at peace with the Jews and the Catholics of the Languedoc. They preached that men and women are equal, that God is within you, and that the church is an obstacle of salvation. The pope found their core beliefs abhorrent. The Cathars accused him and his church of corruption, so he condemned them as heretics. When the Pope learned that they were the guardians of the Tabula Veritatis, he conspired with the King of France and called for a holy war to wipe them out. The Albigensian Crusade was a callous, ruthless massacre. The final confrontation took place here at Montségur in 1244. The Crusaders believed that they had slaughtered all the heretics but a handful managed to escape with the Tabula. They travelled south across the Pyrenees along secret trails. They brought the Tabula here, to Catalonia to be hidden once more. Sadly it was not the end of their trials. The Spanish Inquisition saw to that. Nevertheless for generations my ancestors continued to guard the secret of the Tabula. If Tiago Marqués is able to find it again, he can keep it safe from those who wish to abuse its power.
- Some of the images that can be seen depicted in the fresco are: The mountain fortress of Montségur, burning after its capture by the Crusaders. Knights of the Albigensian Crusade. Cathars being burned at the stake.
- The two pillars inside the Gnostic chapel are just like the figures in the painting. They are the two pillars of the Gnostic faith in harmony. The bearded one is Yahweh, Jehovah. God of the physical world. The other is known by many names: Heylel, Ishtar. He is the Bearer of Light - Lux Ferre, Lucifer. When he is in balance with Jehovah, Lucifer is the God of desire and ambition. Driving humans to be inquisitive, to discover, to advance. Just as Jehovah, when he is in balance with Lucifer, is the God of order. Jehovah stands for selflessness, and altruism. Gnostics worship the harmony of both Gods in balance. If Jehovah ruled without Lucifer, then individuality would be surrendered. Mankind would be wholly conformist, mindlessly dependent. Mere pawns of a controlling power. If Lucifer ruled without Jehovah ambition and desire would be transformed into unbridled greed and man would lust only for wealth and power. Society descend into Chaos. Disorder and war would prevail. Then Lucifer would be the Devil indeed.
- The Saint Ramon appears depicted in “La Maledicció” with a padlock through his mouth pointing down to the ring below him and it is one of the important locations seen in the map found at the library inside the Castell.
- To the library:
- The corridor leading to the library is overgrown and full of rubble. It looks like this part of the castell has taken some damage. The end of the passage is blocked off with rubble.
- By taking another look to Gehnen’s trunk in the library, George discovers a telegram signed by Wolfram. Probably one of his accomplices. The letter reads: “The 'Tabula Veritatis' was smuggled out of Montségur to Catalonia by a group of Cathar survivors. I have confirmed this from confessions extracted by the Dominican inquisitor Eymerich of Girona.”
- The telegram, a coat of arms, the fresco found in the secret Gnostic chapel in Castell dels Sants and one of the saints depicted in “La Maledicció” help George and Nico discover where the Tabula Veritatis is located.
- There is something Ramon has never understood. Señor Xavier tried to escape through the library when the Fascist came, but their windows were barred and it is a dead end. Later in the story, Nico and George find out that there is a false door in one of the walls of the library. Xavier Marqués didn’t have enough time to activate the secret mechanism to open it and safely escape.