rating: +89+x

Item #: SCP-2657

Object Class: Euclid

Special Containment Procedures: SCP-2657 is to be contained within a soundproofed Arthropod containment cell. All surfaces are to be reinforced with 1.5 cm steel plating. Climate-control is to be set to standard-temperate, with corresponding environment to replicate a temperate broadleaf and mixed forest ecoregion, similar to that of the New England-Acadian forests.

Illumination levels are to be maintained at approximately 10 ftcd, or 100 lux. During cleaning or possible containment breach scenario illumination is to be increased to 1000 ftcd, or 11,000 lux.

Once per month two D-class personnel, employee numbers selected randomly by Site lottery program, are designated for removal of waste, lures, excess silk, etc. from containment cell.

Description: SCP-2657 is an arachnid closely resembling a member of the Araneidae family (orb-weaving spiders).

SCP-2657 has a leg span of 2.7 m, a body length of .9 m, and weighs 28.4 kg. The cuticle of chitin covering its cephalothorax is black with silver striations that extend throughout the leg segments. There is silver and yellow mottling along the eyes, pedipalps and abdomen.

SCP-2657 has a pair of jackknife chelicerae that are capable of delivering a potent neuromuscular-blocking venom. After injection of the venom, SCP-2657 further immobilizes its prey with swathing bands, and over the next 1-12 hours will saturate its prey with digestive enzymes. Once organic material dissolves into a semi-consumable state, SCP-2657 further breaks the material down with chelicerae and pedipalps and ingests the resulting "soup". If necessary, SCP-2657 will continue to administer venom during this consumption period.1

SCP-2657 utilizes several hunting strategies, including silk bolas and web traps. The most common hunting strategy is vocal mimicry of intended prey coupled with a lure. SCP-2657 can imitate a variety of animals, including human speech patterns in the English language. Dissections and vivisections of the spawn of SCP-2657 have revealed no manner of articulation or other anatomical features capable of producing such vocalizations, and the presence of book lungs further supports an anomalous origin.

The corresponding lure is manufactured by SCP-2657 out of silk and available detritus, and typically forms a simulacrum of the species being vocally imitated. In order to attract prey, SCP-2657 will conceal itself while manipulating the lure via silk threads and engage in vocal mimicry.

The most common lure produced is that of a distressed human child approximately six years of age. This hunting behavior has only been observed at night or during low-light conditions.2

SCP-2657 has failed all sapient testing.

Addendum 16192 - 12A

Foreword: Excerpt of Interview 16192-12A regarding the capture of SCP-2657 in [Data Redacted].

Interviewed: Captain Andrew Baker, CO MTF Eta-Seven, "Creepy Crawlies"

Interviewer: Researcher Isaac Dafoe

<Begin Log, 0651 EST, 07/10/2016 >

Cpt. Baker: …we tracked the skip through the sewers to a factory on the edge of town. We established a perimeter 'bout half a klick out. The factory had been abandoned — ten, twenty years — there wasn't even a front door to the place anymore. I ordered an aerial drone inside for recon.

Dafoe: And what did you find?

Cpt. Baker: Nothing unusual at first. It was pretty dark. Broken beer bottles, fast food containers, a soiled mattress, a bindle stick. About what you'd expect. Maybe thirty feet into the factory we had to switch to thermal and night vision it was so dark…

Cpt. Baker: …that's when we saw them. The bodies. Scattered along the factory floor, three of 'em, desiccated, looked like they'd been shrink-wrapped.

Dafoe: Had there been any recent reports of missing persons?

Cpt. Baker: Nobody'd been reported missing in town except the little girl.3 We're still reviewing the data, none of this has been confirmed, but there seems to have been a coinciding spike in missing pets recently, and the rat population is nonexistent in the downtown area.

Dafoe: How didn't we catch that? I thought we flag that sort of thing.

Cpt. Baker: Sure, it's an alert trigger, but you've got to keep in mind this isn't Boston or New York. It's not really a city, and most of the surrounding area is rural. And rat populations are notoriously fluid. A colony can seesaw over the course of a single year. That, combined with human nature — we tend not to report the absence of a rat — caused us to miss it.

Dafoe: And the bodies?

Cpt. Baker: There's a commercial train yard a short walk from the factory. My guess is that they all come back as transients.

Dafoe: Why was it so dark inside? I thought the final stages of capture took place yesterday afternoon.

Cpt. Baker: Yeah, it was around thirteen hundred local, but all the factory windows — those steel casements you only see nowadays in old mills they convert into condos and lofts — were covered in webbing. There was no glass, it was just the frames, and so there was a draft, and these web…curtains, I guess you could call 'em…were moving in and out, like the whole building was breathing. When a strong wind came the webs would billow and snap. It was like being on a sailboat.

Dafoe: Can you describe the web architecture?

Cpt. Baker: It just looked like sheets blowing on a clothesline. No real pattern; like cobwebs. As the drone moved further into the factory we found a pile of puppets on the floor, like the one in the ████.

Dafoe: Can we please clarify puppets? You mean the lures, correct?

Cpt. Baker: Yeah, the lures. There were different animals, mostly dogs and cats, and I think I saw a frog and a bird, too. Some of them you couldn't tell what they were supposed to be, but you could see the evolution as the skip kept practicing. It was getting better.

Dafoe: You believe the specimen was practicing? Learning through trial and error?

Cpt. Baker: It was obvious. The initial designs were crude, something your kid would bring home from school. And you could tell they were older 'cause they were on the bottom of the pile. And dirtier. The higher you went the better the puppets got, this one more like an animal balloon, this one papier-mâché. You could actually see the progression like strata in a rock. On the top layer were the humans, these child-sized marionettes. The most realistic even had hair and eyes and bits of clothing. They looked like patchwork Frankenstein dolls.

Cpt. Baker: Beyond the dolls, at the rear of the building, the floor had collapsed, through the basement and into a subbasement. There was a hole, 'bout twenty feet deep, maybe ten feet across and double-that wide. The hole was lined with more webbing. We flew the drone down and found hundreds, maybe thousands of eggs, each the size of a marble.

Dafoe: Did the drone take meteorological readings? Umm…atmospheric?

Cpt. Baker: Why? Gonna try to hatch the ones we collected, huh doc?

Dafoe: I'm sorry, Captain. I'm not authorized to —

Cpt. Baker: Yeah, I know. Forget I asked. I think it did. I'll send you the data.

Dafoe: Is that when you issued the order to enter?

Cpt. Baker: That's right. After we located the clutch we flew the drone up to the factory ceiling and set it to patrol, scanning with all hardware. Still no contact with the skip, but I gave the order to go in anyway, flame-throwers on point. It was unlikely the eggs were going to hatch that minute, but I couldn't afford the risk. For all I knew some had hatched already. That's when we heard it — faint but no question what it was.

Dafoe: What'd you hear?

Cpt. Baker: Singing. The damn thing was singing.

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