General Macarthur is retired, lonely, and worn out from the worries of his life. He comes to Soldier Island under the assumption that some of his old army buddies will be there, but he is uncertain how they will receive him. Macarthur believes that his friends avoid him because they know about his past. During World War I, General Macarthur sent one of the soldiers under his command, Arthur Richmond, to certain death on the battlefield after Macarthur learned Richmond had an affair with his wife. Whether Macarthur’s suspicions are only paranoia or the truth, the record knows how Richmond died and states it as the reason Macarthur is invited to the island. At the time Richmond died, General Macarthur was not sorry for his decision, but his marriage eroded, and his wife died before they could reconcile. By trying to ignore his role in Richmond’s death, Macarthur steadily grew his paranoia that everyone around him knew what he did. The record’s accusation forces Macarthur to face his past head on, and he finds himself unwilling to do so.

After the guests begin to understand their foreboding circumstances, Macarthur develops a morbid sense of peace that he will not be leaving the island. He realizes he will not have to return to his day-to-day stresses, and he is grateful for this reprieve. Macarthur has built up enough regrets and resentments in his lifetime, and he views the island as a means of escape. Multiple times, he vocalizes his certainty that none of the party will leave the island. When Macarthur tells Vera he’s relieved they will die on the island, she is alarmed. Vera believes they can catch Mr. Owen and escape, but Macarthur holds no such hope. It is easier for him to come to terms with dying than facing the shame and heartbreak of his past or the mundane worries of his present.