Item #: SCP-374
Object Class: Safe
Special Containment Procedures: SCP-374 is to be stored in a disassembled state. The blade of SCP-374 is to be stored separately from the rest of the apparatus, and must be cleaned and polished with optical-grade polishing cloth and non-abrasive cleanser after each use.
Due to their extreme age, all parts of the apparatus must be stored in climate-controlled facilities. The blade must be stored in a facility with a class-2 fire prevention system, and the frame must be stored in a facility with a class-3 fire prevention system.
SCP-374's properties are dependent on the conjunction of its original wooden frame and metal blade; these are to be preserved. Other parts of SCP-374 (screws, bolts, pull-cord) may be replaced as necessary.
Each expired instance of SCP-374-1 is to be preserved in formaldehyde for one year, after which it is to be incinerated. Except in emergencies, only D-class personnel are to be used to produce instances of SCP-374-1.
All interrogation sessions are to be recorded, transcribed, and archived. Interrogations are to begin with the question "Can you hear me?" in order to compel a response.
Description: SCP-374 is a French Revolution-era guillotine made of oak with a steel blade. SCP-374 manifests no unusual properties when not in use. Any use of SCP-374 to decapitate a live human produces an instance of SCP-374-1.
SCP-374-1 is a severed human head inhabited by the personality of a French Revolution-era man named Jean-Philippe-Horace-Donatien █████████████. For approximately thirty-five (35) minutes after instantiating, SCP-374-1 is able to see, hear, and speak, and to manifest limited forms of enhanced awareness enabling it to provide true answers to any questions it is asked.
Its strategic usefulness is limited by its argumentativeness and its antipathy towards the Foundation: since it is convinced that the members and employees of the Foundation are evil murderers, it may attempt to obfuscate, mislead, or change the subject.
As the end of its period of activity approaches, SCP-374-1 first loses its sight, then its hearing, and eventually becomes inert.
History: SCP-374 was recovered during a raid on a Marshall, Carter, and Dark facility in 19██. Upon first instantiating in Foundation custody, SCP-374-1 made the following speech:
"Ah, my new slavemasters. Here are the rules of my existence. First, ask me any questions and I provide true answers. Second, [EXPLETIVE] all of you and [EXPLETIVE] all your mothers. You are murderous slaveowning tyrants and I [EXPLETIVE] hate you. Always remember that."
Addendum: SCP-374-1 has taken to responding to direct questions with true-but-useless statements such as "I don't want to tell you that," "I hate you," and "I hope everyone affiliated with the SCP Foundation burns in Hell forever;" its uncooperativeness in these cases can be circumvented by simply telling it "that doesn't matter."
Addendum: Due to its tendency to launch into lengthy philosophical digressions about free will, predestination paradoxes, and chaos theory, SCP-374-1 is not to be asked questions about the future.
Interview log: (March ██, 20██)
Dr. █████████: Can you hear me?
SCP-374-1: Of course I can hear you, you stupid [EXPLETIVE]! What the [EXPLETIVE] do you Foundation [EXPLETIVE] want this time. "Jean-Philippe, where are my keys!" "Jean-Philippe, does the stupid [EXPLETIVE] in the cafeteria like me!" "Jean-Philippe, what is fifty-eight times twenty-three!"
Dr. █████████: How and why is your consciousness bound into this guillotine? How and why are you compelled to provide true and informative answers to the questions we ask you?
SCP-374-1: I am not allowed to answer questions about that topic. Oh, good work, [EXPLETIVE], you've wasted a human life on one of the few things I can't give you information about. You [EXPLETIVE] monster.