Statement of François Deschamps, regarding the family and presumed marriage of Benoît Maçon.
Jonathan Sims is arguing with Elias Bouchard over his recent kidnapping. He is angry that he has been gone a month without any of the archival staff being made aware of the kidnapping and that he had to rely on Helen for rescue rather than Elias sending a rescue party. Elias is dismissive of John and claims that said nothing to the team to avoid distracting them with worry while they investigated the ritual site. He insists that John needs to develop his powers on his own rather than be walked through the process.
John brings up Elias's murder of Jurgen Leitner as an instance of Elias hindering him, but Elias maintains that if John were given answers directly it would stunt the development of his powers. Growing angry, John presses Elias for details on The Unknowing. Elias admits that while the bulk of Gertrude Robinson's research was hidden from him, he knows that The Unknowing will take the form of a dance, that it can be stopped if the site of the ritual is sufficiently disrupted, and that Gertrude had apparently acquired something that could disrupt it to the required degree.
While complaining about the lack of leads, John offhandedly mentions that Gerard Keay was working with Gertrude, something which makes Elias very excited. While John believes it was mentioned in one of the statements, Elias instead asserts that it is John's powers beginning to develop. He now simply knows things without having read about it, and Elias suggests they should look into Gertrude and Gerard's movements before their deaths. They are interrupted when Elias realises that a murderous, knife-wielding Melanie King is on her way to his office, and he asks John to prevent any violence from occurring.
John asks Melanie to put the knife down. She is viciously angry that John would try to stop her after being absent for so long, but apologises when she learns he had been kidnapped. She is resolved to kill Elias, believing his threat about the assistants dying with him is a lie and unafraid of any legal consequences as the police tend not to investigate crimes committed at The Magnus Institute. Melanie argues bitterly with John for taking Elias's side in the conflict, but backs down after he assures her that they will take care of Elias eventually. She leaves.
François Deschamps was a bartender at Le Papillon Blanc, an establishment that ran as a cafe during the day and a small bar at night. Having worked the bar for some years, Deschamps was quite familiar with his coworker Benoît Maçon, a deeply depressed, middle-aged man with no meaningful relationships. Deschamps was not friendly toward Benoît, as he actively sought the pity of his co-workers for being so disconnected from others and would openly stare at couples patronising the bar, envious.
Five weeks before Deschamps gave his statement, Benoît suddenly became far more upbeat and cheerful. He eventually confided in Deschamps that he had met a woman, his petit scarabée (English: little beetle), and was deeply in love. He spoke to anyone who would listen about this woman and "the little ones", whom Deschamps assumed to be her children, but would not give any names or specific details about his new family. Benoît's personal appearance and hygiene steadily deteriorated over the following month, and he was followed by a damp, woody smell that lingered in the air around him.
While they were working together one night, Deschamps saw something moving under the skin of Benoît's right hand. Eventually a small insect emerged from under the nail of his ring finger and crawled away, with no blood and no reaction from Benoît.
Deschamps was shaken and horrified, and shortly thereafter encountered Gerard Keay and Gertrude Robinson. He told them about Benoît and was promised answers if he could provide them with an address. The two researchers debated whether Benoît was under the sway of The Stranger or The Corruption, and eventually all three went to Benoît's home. There, they found Benoît in the embrace of his petit scarabée, a thing that Deschamps found so repulsive that he and Keay suggested they burn the apartment to the ground. However, Robinson rejected the idea as it may have attracted the attention of the police.
John realises that the entire statement was written in French, and that he is able to understand it perfectly despite never learning the language.
Benoît Maçon died in late June 2014, shortly after the statement was given, and Toulouse police have tightly sealed the records of the matter. François Deschamps refused a follow-up interview, but forwarded the Archives a badly stained wedding invitation. On it, the only name not obscured by stains is Benoît's.
Based on the travel documents he found in Gertrude's laptop, John concludes that she and Keay next went to New Zealand. Before he departs to follow them, he catches up with Martin as he promised Georgie he would. During their conversation, Martin apologises profusely for not knowing John was kidnapped and asks about how he has been doing. John avoids speaking about himself and instead asks after the other archival assistants, and is unsurprised to learn that Tim is doing poorly and that Melanie has been acting strange. Martin asks if John will be returning to work at the Archives, and is disappointed to learn that he is not. John apologises for so being distant and leaves.
- Related Entity: The Corruption and The Stranger
|ATTENTION! SPOILERS AHEAD!!|
This article contains information from later episodes of The Magnus Archives and may contain major spoilers for the setting and plot. Continue at your own risk.
- John also understands a language he had not learned in MAG 105, where he does not recognise that Zhang Xiaoling of the Pu Songling Research Centre has been using Mandarin phrases while speaking with him.
- Gertrude acquired a large amount of plastic explosives to stop The Unknowing. It was discovered in a storage locker in MAG 113.