rating: +2+x

Item #: SCP-4053

Object Class: Euclid

Special Containment Procedures: SCP-4053 is to be contained in a secure room with two layers of airtight, opaque doors leading to a single point of entry; neither door is to be opened concurrently with the other. As an added precaution, SCP-4053 should not be visible from the entrance of its containment chamber. Class-D personnel who become instances of SCP-4053-2 are to be immediately terminated. Other personnel exposed to SCP-4053 should be quarantined for 192 hours or until an instance of SCP-4053-1 is produced in their likeness, at which point they should be quarantined indefinitely.

Instances of SCP-4053-1 are to be collected once per day via a vacuum pressure system integrated into the walls of the containment chamber and stored in a secure locker at a separate location decided upon by SCP-4053's current lead researcher or other relevant Level 3 personnel. Personnel identified in instances of SCP-4053-1 are to be quarantined or terminated at the discretion of the aforementioned personnel.

Description: SCP-4053 is a 172 centimeter-tall, highly-detailed labradorite statue of a human figure. It is posed with an outstretched arm and a forward lean, as if the subject were reaching out to another, and parted lips as if speaking. Analysts describe the statue’s expression as desperate. The legs below the knees are a single mass of uncarved rock. Evidence points to the statue being carved in the 12th century BCE. The object was discovered in a subterranean cave network in Tuva.1

When a human subject views SCP-4053 in person or through physical or digital media, there is a chance2 that a polaroid photograph will be produced from SCP-4053’s mouth (despite a lack of evidence of any internal mechanisms to facilitate this), hereby referred to as SCP-4053-1. These photographs display the subject in a well-framed shot, and seem to be taken from a variety of angles not bound to the object’s perspective. No photograph includes SCP-4053, even from an angle which would place it in the shot; other humans may also be absent if the subject is not socially or physically interacting with them.

Subjects who have been exposed to SCP-4053 and “had their picture taken” experience a slow change in personality over time. When in contact at least once every 30 hours with their instance of SCP-4053-1, the changes are limited: they begin with a lack of empathy towards other beings. Within weeks, the subject begins experiencing symptoms of depression, notably a lack of enjoyment in usual activities. Over the course of several months, most subjects will take to gradually more extreme pursuits in an attempt to regain sensations they can no longer experience. On a physiological level, the usual damage in DNA associated with age slows and eventually halts; this, combined with other factors still being studied, allows the subject’s cells to divide and die in their normal cycle without their physical aging.

Subjects denied access to their instance of SCP-4053-1 suffer more severe and immediate effects. By 40 hours separated, subjects begin displaying anxiety and paranoia, stating their wish to reacquire SCP-4053-1 despite repeated rejection. By 60 hours, subjects will become very visibly agitated and, when feasible, will become belligerent and attempt to physically retake SCP-4053-1 by any means necessary. By 110 hours, subjects feel a secondary goal to reach SCP-4053, and will take similarly drastic measures to discover its location and reach it once their primary objective is complete. By 145 hours, there is a marked increase in aggressive behaviour, the subject preferring to retake the photograph by force or discover its whereabouts via violent interrogation. By 215 hours, nearly all rational thought has ceased; subjects become convinced that any humanoid around them either has SCP-4053-1 or knows its location. 300 hours in, or directly after the destruction of their photograph, the subject becomes obsessed with reaching SCP-4053 alone and is considered an instance of SCP-4053-2.

Instances of SCP-4053-2 cease any attempts to communicate with humans and seem to have an innate understanding of SCP-4053’s location, accompanied by an intense desire to reach it. In addition to adopting an extremely malnourished appearance, subjects appear to lack psychosomatic limitations on muscle exertion, resulting in increased physical capabilities at the cost of frequent injury. Despite brain patterns indicating they still receive tactile stimuli, they lack any pain response typical of humans or other animals. In addition to the lack of aging mentioned above, instances of SCP-4053-2 seem able to function without food intake or brain activity, their bodies seemingly entirely autonomous. Upon reaching SCP-4053, subjects engage in ceremonial behaviour, including dances, high-volume vocalisations, and ritual scarification.

Addendum: During SCP-4053's initial recovery, 229 instances of SCP-4053-1 and 17 instances of SCP-4053-2 were also recovered. While the latter initially seemed in perfect health by the standards of other instances, during vivisection several showed signs of widespread (if only partial) brain regeneration, implying repeated injuries in the past. Determining the age of any subject has proven difficult due to SCP-4053's effects, but attempts at facial reconstruction through computer-generated imagery have allowed researchers to match some of the subjects to the recovered instances of SCP-4053-1: the garb they were wearing on exposure to the object implies several were soldiers under the Xiongnu empire in Mongolia, which would date them back to the 3rd century BCE.

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