Statement of Floyd Matharu regarding his time aboard the Dorian from 2011 to 2014.
Basira and John are aboard a ship on their way to disrupt The Dark's ritual plans. Basira is suffering from seasickness. John asks a shiphand when they are expected to arrive and is told it will be another two days. As the hand leaves, John notices a recorder has appeared, indicating something is about to happen.
John realizes the shiphand has potentially important information. He confronts the man, Floyd Matharu, who John realises was part of the Dorian's crew serving under Mikaele Salesa from 2011 to 2014. John Compels the reluctant Matharu to give a statement about his service and Salesa's death, despite Basira's warnings.
Floyd says that Salesa was a good boss. He treated his people well, and never lied to them about the illegal things they were doing. They trusted him because he knew what he was doing. It was a weird ship to be on, because the Captain, Gaultier, reported to Salesa, who was not even really a part of the crew. It was a weird dynamic, Floyd says, but it never caused any problems.
Salesa was the only person ever allowed in the cargo bay during a voyage. Only one person ever tried to break that rule, a man named Jésus, from Colombia. Salesa threw Jésus overboard when he caught him trying to enter the cargo bay, and none of the crew was unhappy he did it, because they all saw what happened when someone else got in the cargo bay.
Floyd's last voyage with Salesa was the trip that killed Salesa, seven years ago. Salesa seemed tired. He had been doing this job for as long as anyone could remember. Floyd once found him poring over a photo album of the ship, with a different captain and crew, who Salesa said were all "dead now".
That was a month before Gantulga, a fellow crew member, died. They took on cargo that a crew member told Floyd was a carpet from a Burmese beggar woman who fed children to a crocodile head. That night, Floyd was woken by the sound of Gantulga screaming as he was being attacked by something Floyd describes as a "pattern". Floyd screamed and fell, knocking himself out on a table. When he woke a few moments later, Salesa was there, dragging Gantulga onto the deck. Floyd followed and watched as Salesa threw Gantulga and what looked like a blank rug overboard.
Salesa spent the next two days drunk, and disappeared when they landed in port. When he returned, he was full of "wild energy", and Floyd was worried about the next job. Salesa called the crew together and said he was retiring, but he wanted them to do one last job to send them off with a big payday. They sailed to the Maldives, where the plan was for Salesa and four crew members to take a small boat to land on one of the islands to pick up the cargo. The rest of the crew was to prepare the ship to leave as quickly as possible once Salesa returned, and they should be prepared to defend the ship should anyone attempt to stop them.
When Salesa returned, only two of the four crew members were with him. Floyd got a brief look at the cargo and says no matter how many times he goes over it in his head, it just looked like an old camera with a broken lens. As the ship prepared to leave, Floyd looked over at the island and saw that in the moment he had looked away, a storm had brewed, covering the area in clouds and lightning. In the flashes from the lightning, Floyd could see the trees start to catch fire, and he saw a huge shape moving in the water, starting to surge up and surround the island. Floyd closed his eyes and fell to the deck, and when he looked again, the island was gone.
When the crew returned to port, Salesa insisted on throwing a party, saying how much he would miss everyone when he was retired. That night a huge explosion rocked the port. Floyd says that, though there was no reason to suspect it, they all knew it had something to do with them. No one could find the Captain or Salesa. As they all stood around arguing what to do, the Captain reappeared, clothes torn and hair matted with blood. He commanded them to get back on the ship and they left with haste. When anyone asked about Salesa, the Captain just shook his head. They were able to piece together that Salesa and the Captain had gone to deliver the artefact, but they had been betrayed and Salesa was dead.
The Captain died soon after, taking the secret of exactly what happened with him to the grave. The crew broke up after that, although Floyd thinks some of them managed to retain ownership of the Dorian.
John thanks Matharu for telling his story, and gently tells the upset and confused Matharu to leave and take a break. Basira criticises John for using his powers to forcibly extract Matharu's story, subjecting the man to a future of nightmares.
John retorts that Matharu would not have told his story willingly and that John needed it, both for the intel and to keep his own strength up. He appeals to Gertrude's ruthless but effective example. Basira reminds him that he, unlike Gertrude, used to care about the human cost of his actions.
John accuses Basira of wanting Floyd's story too and holds her responsible for not stopping him.
|ATTENTION! SPOILERS AHEAD!!|
This section contains information from later episodes of The Magnus Archives and may contain major spoilers for the setting and plot. Continue at your own risk.
- Related Entity: Possibly The Spiral and The Vast
- This is the first time on tape that John intentionally compels an entire statement out of an unwitting bystander. In MAG 146 he confesses that he has also done it to four other people but without recording it.
- Salesa survived the explosion and makes an appearance in MAG 180, alongside the old camera.