Item #: SCP-2264
Object Class: Safe
Special Containment Procedures: Due to the unavoidably public nature of the building housing SCP-2264-A, security measures are to focus on preventing civilian access to the anomaly's entrance. The Foundation is to cooperate with the government of the United Kingdom in concealing the existence of SCP-2264-A. A hidden passage to SCP-2264-A has been constructed and remains its only means of access. The original entrance to the room where SCP-2264-A is located has been walled over, ensuring that only authorized personnel have access to SCP-2264-A. Operatives are to be reassigned and replaced monthly due to the threat of psychological addiction to SCP-2264-B.
Description: SCP-2264-A is a door composed of iron located within a hidden chamber beneath Martin Tower, a part of the Tower of London1. The gateway cannot be unlocked through traditional means, requiring a highly ritualized process. Attached to SCP-2264-A is a complex apparatus composed of alchemical tools such as alembics, retorts, and a crucible.
Based on journals found within the hidden chamber, SCP-2264-A2 is presumably the creation of Henry Percy (27 April 1564 – 5 November 1632), 9th Earl of Northumberland, an English aristocrat, alchemist, and long-term prisoner within the Tower of London. Despite his incarcerated status, the Earl maintained a degree of influence, said to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle and allowed access to books and research material. He was known as The Wizard Earl due to his extensive library and interests in the scientific and occult.
It is considered possible that others within Percy's circle of associates were involved in the creation of SCP-2264-A, including John Dee, famed alchemist and court astrologer of Queen Elizabeth. The School of Night3, of which Henry Percy was supposedly member to, may have also had involvement.
Journal of Henry Percy, The Wizard Earl:
we wilt confront the dark night of the soul - the [pineal gland] wilt be freshly extract'd. fire evokes the shadow within.
wash aroint the impurities - rain cleanses all sin and prepares the soul f'r Elysium. divide, not as dictat'd by the rigors of harmony, but rather into two opposing principles to be later coagulat'd to form a unity of opposites.
victory coincides with the yellowing of the lunar consciousness. the white surrenders to dawn; the travelling lamp slays the moon.
red alludes; instead, surrender upon the apparatus a sanguine sacrifice.
A Foundation alchemist was consulted. The instructions are roughly comparable with the magnum opus; a four-part process employed in the creation of the mythical philosopher's stone. Replication of this procedure required [REDACTED]4
Through still undetermined means, a mechanism within SCP-2264-A responds to the completed solution, causing it to unlock and open - allowing access to SCP-2264-B.
SCP-2264-B is an extradimensional city which does not correspond to any known location, earthly or otherwise. Objects that originate from within SCP-2264-B will dematerialize if brought through SCP-2264-A. Such objects have been later found returned to the site of their initial removal.
Those who enter SCP-2264-B report having all personal belongings removed and their clothes replaced. Manifested outfits are said to resemble those worn at masquerade balls, most especially those associated with the Carnival of Venice, and will dematerialize upon exit of SCP-2264-B. Masks cannot be removed while inside SCP-2264-B but the rest of the attire can be discarded if one chooses to do so. The majority of SCP-2264-B inhabitants are dressed and adorned in a similar fashion; agents have reported a somewhat organic quality to their costumes, frequently describing it as "chitinous". The most common inhabitants of SCP-2264-B are roughly humanoid and have since have been classified as SCP-2264-1.
The sky has been described as yellow and containing an indeterminate number of black stars, corresponding with no known or even hypothesized constellations. Buildings are shaped in such a manner as to suggest them being carved from a single seamless material. Black, white, yellow, and red are the only colors to reportedly occur within SCP-2264-B. Architecture is non-euclidean and the normal laws of gravity do not apply5, thus inhabitants can be observed as climbing a stairway upside-down, but based on their own gravity source, they are climbing normally.
The city has been described as having the odor of "dried flowers with a hint of mold", or a scent "not unlike that of old books". The actual size of the city has been difficult to measure but it appears to be located on an island, surrounded by a black ocean, the composition of the liquid unknown but described as appearing more viscous than water.
Operatives have reported a hypnagogic malaise while exploring SCP-2264-B, with difficulty estimating time and space. Although SCP-2264-B is a tangible location and not considered to be an actual dream, those who had a history of lucid dreaming have shown far greater self-control and attention to detail than those who did not. Operatives are to be reassigned and replaced monthly due to the threat of psychological addiction to SCP-2264-B. Initial efforts at exploration resulted in eight AWOL operatives with those that returned having difficultly describing what they had observed in a coherent and/or detailed manner.
Addendum: SCP-2264 was discovered accidentally during the refurbishment of Martin Tower in ██/██/████. The Foundation was contacted by representatives of the Crown due to the suspicion of a potentially anomalous artifact based on the writings found within, since attributed to Henry Percy, 9th Earl of Northumberland. Discovered among his notes was an unsent letter, intended to be received by Christopher Marlowe, famed poet and playwright. The letter is dated 30 May 1593, the day of Christopher Marlowe's unsolved murder.