The Camp Prospero Files: Drake Masterson


The following report and its contents are classified TOP SECRET under Federal Code 7906-A. The information contained within is the exclusive property of the United States Department of Defense, The Bureau of Magical Affairs, and its branch offices. Any unauthorized release will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Interviews conducted by professional staff for the purpose of determining the mental status and fitness of key training camp personnel.


Subject: Drake Masterson

Designation: Class 4

Rank: Senior Scout


INTERVIEWER: Have a seat, Mr. Masterson. Now tell me, what shall we discuss?


I: Mr. Masterson?


I: Mr. Masterson, I asked if there was anything you wanted to talk about. Is something bothering you?


I: Mr. Masterson, are you going to answer my questions?

DRAKE MASTERSON: They told me I had to show up here, pencil-neck. They didn’t say I had to talk. Hard pass.

I: Hmm. “They” told me you might be, shall we say, difficult to hold a conversation with.

DM: [snorts] It’s not my fault people ask for my opinion. I tell everyone to go shove it. You’re nothing special. And don’t think you’re going to get into my head with any of that psychiatric stuff, either. [taps temple] You see this? Fort Knox.

I: I see. [writes in notebook] You don’t like me, do you, Mr. Masterson?

DM: How could you tell?

I: Well, the personal abuse was the first sign. Also, your body language suggests that–

DM: [rolls eyes] I was being sarcastic, shrink. Jesus. Get a clue.

I: Why is that? Do you find you instinctively distrust authority figures?

DM: No. I just don’t believe anyone more important than me exists. If they do, I haven’t met them yet.

I: Uh-huh. [writes in notebook] Very interesting. You have strong opinions, Mr. Masterson. I suppose it’s understandable given your strength in magic. According to my records, you’re the one of the few Class 4 wizards we know about–a prodigy. And with fire magic, too: one of the rarest and most difficult forms of elemental power to control. That must give you some satisfaction.

DM: [smirks] Huh. And here I thought you were just going to bore me to death. Okay, I’ll bite.

I: So you’ll speak to me?

DM: Only if we keep talking about how great I am. Better get a fresh notepad, though. We might be here a while. But I guarantee it’ll be time better spent than with the rest of those scrubs.

I: I gather you see yourself as somewhat set apart from your fellow scouts.

DM: Umm–as in, better than them? Duh. That’s just the facts.

I: And yet without many of them, you might not be sitting here right now.

DM: [eyes narrow] What’s that supposed to mean, shrink?

I: I’m sorry, Mr. Masterson. I was simply observing that while you clearly are quite capable of taking care of yourself, it seems in circumstances where you lacked a certain leverage, these other scouts you consider yourself superior to actually came through for you. Even though they had no reason to.

DM: [glares] What do you mean, no reason? They need me. Who else is going to kick ass and take names when it needs to get done?

I: Ah. And do you also enjoy that feeling?

DM: What feeling?

I: Being needed. Belonging to a group.

DM: [scowls] I don’t know what you’re talking about. I don’t need anyone. People just piss me off.

I: Indeed. [shuffles through papers] Your file is quite clear on that point. Disciplinary action a half-dozen times, including for physical assault. Assessments indicating extreme narcissism, anger management issues, emotional instability–need I go on?


I: You, Mr. Masterson, fit the profile of a loner. A misfit. Your–shall we say–troubled relationship with your family points even more to that label.

DM: They put you up to this, didn’t they? My jerkoff family. Lousy assholes. But so that? I don’t need them or their money. The only person who tells me what to do is me.

I: And yet your actions over the past two years say otherwise. You’ve helped Jack Ferguson and his friends avert several catastrophes. More than that, they seem to regard you as a friend, despite what you say.

DM: [groans] Goddamn it. I’m so sick of hearing about Ferguson. You couldn’t go 10 whole minutes without bringing his stupid name up. And he doesn’t even have the common decency to hold onto his magic so I can beat him in a fair fight.

I: Let’s talk about your feelings toward Jack. Clearly your relationship is complicated, but the record shows he’s stood up and defended you even when he had no reason to, and when no one else would. And your association with him and his fellow scouts indicates a pattern of gratitude, despite what you might say. You’ve had plenty of opportunities to take him out of the picture, but never seized on a single one. Interesting. [clears throat] Thank you, Mr. Masterson. This has been a very enlightening session.

DM: What are you talking about? I didn’t give you anything.

I: I respectfully disagree. One final question, though: would you say your respect for Jack and desire to repay him developed naturally, or more due to circumstance?

DM: [glares and rises from chair]

I: Is this the part where you attempt to harm me for getting to the truth of the matter, Mr. Masterson? Because I warn you, the guards outside will–

DM: This is the part where you pucker up and kiss my ass, shrink. I’m done here. [stalks to the door, but pauses] Got any copies of those notes?

I: No. Why?

DM: [snaps fingers, notebook bursts into flames]

I: Oh! [drops burning notebook]

DM: [glowers] [CENSORED] you, [CENSORED]. [Walks out]

I: Did you record all that? Good. Let’s move on.

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