The Anglerfish is a mysterious being who seems to lure people into the dark before they disappear. It is dubbed "the Anglerfish," by Jonathan Sims, but whether or not it has another name is unknown. It is associated with The Stranger.
Nathan Watts described a figure with a face that was blank and expressionless with damp and slightly sunken skin, “like they had a bad fever.” It spoke in a flat voice without moving its mouth and the figure's feet didn't quite touch the ground as it gently swayed from side to side. Sasha James was able to edit a seemingly empty photo to reveal the faint outline of a long, thin hand that appeared to be about waist level on a man of average height. (MAG 1) It is theorized that The Anglerfish is not the body that is being seen, but a puppeteer in the shadows. It comes from the fact that the body it uses never opens its mouth and swings gently from side to side, like if something was dangling from a string.
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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.
The Anglerfish pretends to be a smoker in order to lure smokers to it. Based on victims like Sarah Baldwin and Daniel Rawlings, it seems all its victims are skinned, and the skins can be taxidermized and made into entities also associated with The Stranger. In MAG 118, John says he had assumed the Anglerfish simply ate the rest of the bodies but it appears they have been turned into meat-based "waxworks" and skinless choir members for The Unknowing.
The Anglerfish likely appeared repeatedly near the Old Fishmarket Close in Edinburgh between 2005 and 2010. Sasha James's research found that during that time period, there had been 6 disappearances in the area: Jessica McEwan (Nov '05), Sarah Baldwin (Aug '06), Daniel Rawlings (Dec '06), Ashley Dobson (May '08), Meghan Shaw (June '08), and John Fellowes (March '10). In March 2010, before Fellowes's disappearance, Nathan Watts encountered the Anglerfish after midnight while walking home. He heard a voice asking, "Can I have a cigarette?" several times and saw a figure in a narrow, unlit alleyway with a short staircase leading up.
In June 2013, Alexander Scaplehorn encounters a creature in The Trophy Room's basement that may be the Anglerfish. He sees a figure that sways gently and speaks in a flat voice, simply repeating the phrase “We’ve got one down here. Come on, I’ll show you”.
The Anglerfish participates in The Unknowing on August 6, 2017. It has provided its victims, now skinless, for the ritual's choir.
- Jessica McEwan (Nov '05)
- Sarah Baldwin (Aug '06)
- Daniel Rawlings (Dec '06)
- Ashley Dobson (May '08)
- Meghan Shaw (June '08)
- John Fellowes (March '10)