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"Oh, no... that's what I keep you around for ...sir."
Terran Confederacy (formerly)
The Sons of KorhalEdit
Matt Horner, the second son of a minor Tyrador IX merchant, lived a boring and safe life, all the while yearning for something more. Horner found that something in the tales of a trader working for the Sons of Korhal, actively recruiting new members. He spoke of the "evil empire" that was the Terran Confederacy and gave praise to those who plotted its downfall. Intelligent, but bored, youthful and idealistic, Horner was the perfect target and he found himself supporting the SOK's cause, wanting "to make a difference."
Following the rebel group's advice, Horner enlisted in the Confederate Navy, where he excelled as a pilot. After graduating with honors, he deserted the Confederacy and joined the Sons of Korhal full time. He was posted on the Cormorant, a merchantman converted for blockade running. The vessel enjoyed a great deal of success in its evasion of Confederate patrols and its transport of men and material between star systems, earning Horner a reputation of being clever and dependable.
A New CallingEdit
By the time Mar Sara entered its dying days as the Great War raged, Horner had become the Cormorant's first officer. The vessel was called to the Fringe World to assist in the evacuation carried out by the Sons of Korhal, rescuing citizens the Confederacy had left to die. Horner was assigned to work with Arcturus Mengsk's newest recruit, Captain Jim Raynor. Horner quickly grew to admire the former marshal's bravery and loyalty. However, with Mengsk's use of psi emitters to lure the zerg en masse to Tarsonis, resulting in the deaths of many innocents, Horner was disgusted – it seemed to him that one tyrannical regime had merely been replaced by another, one with Mengsk at its head. Raynor, also disgusted at Mengsk's genocidal actions and his betrayal of Sarah Kerrigan, broke away from the Sons of Korhal, many of his men following him. Of those who followed, Horner was among the first.
"Sir? Yessir! A new base of operations! A launching point for the revolution! A rallying ground for the-..."
"No, just a planet."
Two months after the Fall of Tarsonis, Horner found himself over the planet of Char, following Raynor's command. Horner stayed behind on the Hyperion while the bulk of the Raiders descended to the surface. However, Horner was unable to wait for them to return, as zerg under a now Infested Kerrigan's direction had hijacked a number of shuttles in order to board the terran ships in orbit, the Hyperion included. Unable to prevent the shuttle from docking, Horner, as per Raynor's orders, was ordered to perform an emergency warp jump, despite the dangers such a reckless action entailed. However, Horner was able to make the jump with minimal damage to the ship. After several months of repairs, Horner managed to return to Char, providing transport for the remaining Raiders.
Over the years, Horner took control of the Raiders' small fleet and many military aspects of Raynor's campaigns. Horner became hardened by his experiences, but his ideals and resolve remained undimmed, even in the face of Dominion propaganda. Despite Raynor's doubts spreading to his crew, Horner kept faith in his commander and his belief that Raynor's innate heroism would resurface and lead the rebels to victory. To that end, he tried to act as Raynor's conscience while keeping him focused and "firing up" the Raiders.
During this period, Horner made a stop at Deadman's Port, taking part in a poker game. What he didn't know was that the "prize" was actually a wife—Mira Han. Horner had no interest in being married to Han and actively avoided her afterward.
Wings of LibertyEdit
By 2504, Horner still served as Raynor's first officer. Now in his early twenties and his demeanor far more formal than it was previously, events repeated themselves at Mar Sara, with the zerg returning to the Koprulu Sector. Horner brought the Hyperion down to the planet, rescuing Raynor and his men from the Swarm and making a successful escape. He subsequently briefed his superior on the greater zerg invasion of the sector.
Horner was distrustful of new arrival Tychus Findlay, a convict and an old friend of Raynor. Raynor assured Horner there was nothing to worry about, but Horner's suspicions remained, especially when he found Findlay accessing the Hyperion's archive without permission. Regardless, Findlay led the Raiders to the world of Xil for another artifact, with Horner providing support.
Horner continued to be concerned with Raynor's poor psychological state. After fighting Kerrigan on Tyrador VIII to assist the Möebius Foundation, Horner tried again to counsel his friend to let go of the misplaced guilt over Kerrigan's infestation. Raynor refused to listen, as expected, and continued to find solace in alcohol. Raynor was presented with his old Confederate marshal's badge as a reminder of what he was capable of. Horner assured him the crew still had faith in him and that they needed his leadership. It was a tactic that paid off and Raynor returned to an effective leadership position.
Spectre of UneaseEdit
To obtain the credits needed for continued actions, the Raiders agreed to take on a mining job on Redstone III, offered by Gabriel Tosh. Tosh joined the crew and through research on his background, Horner discovered that Tosh was a former ghost.
After a mission on Bel'Shir, Horner received an anonymous transmission explaining that Tosh was part of a classified operation called Project: Shadowblade, which used jorium and terrazine to enhance ghosts into spectres. Tosh admitted to being a spectre, but claimed the transmission came from Mengsk in an attempt to divide them. Raynor agreed to let the matter pass, but wasn't sure if he could trust Tosh.
Later, Horner received a transmission from Nova, who was revealed to be a Dominion assassin. Nova told them that spectres were mentally unstable, and Raynor was forced to choose between trusting Tosh or her.
Raynor sided with Tosh and after New Folsom Prison was broken out, Horner and Tosh disagreed on motivations. He believed the Raiders' cause was one of freedom, not wanton destruction or revenge. In this he contrasted with Tosh whose goal was simply to "kill Mengsk and burn his Dominion to the ground." Raynor assured his XO that his dream of a better future would become a reality, but that people like Tosh and the former marshal weren't meant for it.
Raynor helped Nova destroy the spectre training facility on Avernus Station. Tosh escaped and contacted Raynor remotely. Horner watched uneasily as the spectre attempted and failed to harm Raynor with a voodoo doll in the rebel's likeness. Nova assassinated the spectre while he was talking; Horner witnessed this with distaste. After Tosh's assassination, Horner jokingly asked Raynor why he never met "normal girls."
- Matt Horner(src)
A rebel informant discovered that the Dominion found something unusually valuable in their continuing excavations of Tarsonis. Horner passed this on to Raynor, who approved a raid to steal it. The Raiders attacked a number of trains and found the object in question: Adjutant 23-46. The Raiders hired their old mercenary associate Colonel Orlan to decrypt it at Deadman's Port.
Orlan decided to betray the Raiders and sell the adjutant to the Dominion. Horner and Raynor became suspicious as Orlan delayed. This was confirmed by Han; who was hired by Orlan to prevent the Raiders from interfering with his new deal. However, she was more inclined to cooperate with Raynor and Horner, and offered to allow the Raiders to buy out her contract with Orlan. The Raiders agreed and with Han's assistance recovered Adjutant 23-46. The reunion with Han was awkward for Horner and he abstained from speaking with her, despite her willingness, which amused Raynor.
The adjutant contained information proving Mengsk's hand in the Fall of Tarsonis. With the decrypted information on hand, Horner formed a plan to broadcast it throughout the Dominion. Using information given by Han, he proposed raiding the Dominion's Valhalla installation and stealing the Odin, a prototype heavy assault walker, and using it to seize the UNN Studios on Korhal. The war machine was duly commandeered by Findlay and the immediate Dominion presence was suppressed to keep the heist a secret.
The Raiders traveled to Korhal with the Odin. The Dominion thought the walker was still under their control and intended to unveil it in a massive public relations demonstration in Korhal City. Piloted by Findlay, the Odin led the attack on the defenses surrounding the UNN Studios and allowed the Raiders to broadcast the adjutant's incriminating information using the local broadcast towers. The results were entirely satisfactory. Dominion citizens expressed their moral outrage through demonstrations and riots against the emperor. For Horner, this marked the true beginning of the revolution after years of frustration.
During their media raid, documents uncovered pointed to the presence of an old Dominion bio-weapons lab orbiting Castanar. Raynor led a raid on the platform with Horner providing support from afar. It was discovered that Mengsk was involved in protoss-zerg hybridization.
Raynor suspected that Mengsk had his hand in the "end of the world." The technology the Dominion used was too complex, so Horner suggested that Mengsk had help.
Horner theorized that Mengsk might be trying to create subservient super-soldiers, but reasoned that the technology involved was beyond what terrans possessed.
Dealing with the DevilEdit
"You signed up to follow my orders! If you can't do that anymore then get the hell off my ship!"
Horner's faith in Raynor was sorely tested after the recovery of the fourth xel'naga artifact from Typhon XI. The Raiders were unaware that the Foundation was owned by Crown Prince Valerian Mengsk. When the Foundation arranged to meet the Raiders after Typhon XI, the prince went to meet Raynor personally, aboard the Dominion flagship Bucephalus complete with an escort of battlecruisers.
The Raiders were alarmed by the arrival of the Dominion Fleet. Raynor immediately ordered the Hyperion to go along side Bucephalus for a boarding action. Horner thought this was unwise. Furthermore, he sensed something was amiss as the enemy warships had not raised their energy shields. Nonetheless, he was unable to persuade his commander to reconsider. Ultimately, Raynor confronted Valerian aboard Bucephalus. Valerian convinced Raynor to join forces for a strike on Char, aimed at using the xel'naga device to deinfest Kerrigan.
Horner believed an assault on Char was suicidal, the alliance with the Dominion unethical, and a trap. He feared the recent momentum against Mengsk would be lost in an operation he saw as aimed solely to assuage Raynor's personal demons. In a heated exchange, Raynor demanded either Horner's obedience or resignation. Horner uneasily let his commander have his way.
Other crew members were equally apprehensive, and things came to a head after recovering the last component from a xel'naga worldship in the Sigma Quadrant. Faith was generally restored in Raynor's leadership after he beat a drunk Findlay in brawl in Hyperion's cantina. The rebel leader was finally able to convince his followers that the alliance was temporary and removing the Queen of Blades from her position was for every terran. With the intra-Raider belligerence fading, and smugly pleased that Findlay had been put in his place, Horner was willing to allow Valerian to prove himself, rather than assume he was the same as his ruthless father.
Return to CharEdit
During the assault on Char, Horner provided advice and support for Raynor from the Hyperion. He tracked Dominion drop pods during the initial landing so Raynor could rescue the landing troops. When the terrans dug in at the base of the primary hive cluster, Horner appraised them of incoming attacks. The defenses held and the xel'naga device deinfested Kerrigan.
Heart of the SwarmEdit
Horner continued to command the Hyperion during the events following Kerrigan's deinfestation.
When Raynor was lost in a Dominion raid on the lab on EB-103, Kerrigan attacked Valerian with a psionic choke, holding him guilty for failing to escort Raynor to safety. Horner calmed her down — just when a Dominion fleet warped around the Hyperion and opened fire. Having failed to negotiate with the Dominion fleet, even despite announcing Valerian's presence on board, Horner ordered the Raiders fleet to escape. Kerrigan, however, had other plans and parted ways with the Raiders, embarking on a personal quest to find Raynor and execute her revenge against Mengsk.
In the light of Raynor's absence and alleged execution, the Raiders temporarily fell under the joint leadership of Horner and Valerian. Things changed when Kerrigan discovered that Raynor was still alive, contacting Valerian on the Hyperion and pleading to find him. As the only person who could hack the Dominion security network to find Raynor was Colonel Orlan, Horner was forced once again to deal with Mira Han, much to his chagrin. Negotiations with Mira failed, as she refused to deal with anyone but Raynor himself. Horner then piloted the Hyperion into an asteroid field where Han ran her mineral mining operations. Only after the destruction of several of her space stations did she agree to turn Orlan over.
Personality and AbilitiesEdit
Horner has strong moral principles. He desires to make the universe a better place, and opposes the murder and torture of innocents. He is not only a fair combatant but also an excellent ship pilot and a decent starship tactician.
Essentially the foil to Tychus Findlay's lack of ethics, Horner is a focal point for decency and freedom. Calm and reserved, he speaks the truth and rarely anything but the truth, and is a staunch believer in his leader's cause and ideals even if Raynor himself lacked faith. Despite his immense dislike for both the Dominion and its emperor, he never lets these emotions affect his better judgement.
A natural captain and decent strategist, it is not without reason he was put in charge of Hyperion, easily able to fend off and evade the zerg assault on Mar Sara in a short time.
- When designing Horner, Blizzard Entertainment wanted him to be "very military". To represent this, inspiration for his attire was taken from historical fascist uniforms. This would help distinguish him from the game's other major characters. In terms of personality, he is the opposite of Gabriel Tosh.
- Horner's portrait is available on battle.net for players who complete the Rebellion Mastery achievement.
- It was revealed at BlizzCon 2010 that an older polygon model of Matt Horner was ultimately used as a corpse in the background of the Escape from Mar Sara cinematic sequence.
- Horner's face bears a resemblance to his voice actor, Brian Bloom.
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|Wings of Liberty|