rating: +71+x

Item #: SCP-5352

Object Class: Euclid

Special Containment Procedures: SCP-5352 is monitored remotely from Site-107, 4km north of Murky Lake. Once per month, a team of five members of personnel (two D-Class, two agents, and one researcher) are to enter the town to collect samples and monitor anomalous phenomena within. Disappearances are to be logged, and in the event missing parties cannot be located, they are to be considered KIA.

SCP-5352-C is to be actively monitored. In the event that more than 90% of the building housing it becomes absent, Procedure 5352-PRECESSION is to be carried out in an attempt to preserve the integrity of both the building and local reality.

Under no circumstances are personnel allowed to whistle while within SCP-5352.

Description: SCP-5352 refers to the abandoned town of Murky Lake, New Mexico (Nexus-04). The area has been devoid of permanent human settlement since 1936, when the population vanished during the Dust Bowl1. Prior to this, anomalous events of unclear origin had been documented throughout Murky Lake, though these events were treated as being of low priority by the American Secure Containment Initiative.

Most Nexus zones operate under a series of thematic constants2; SCP-5352 appears to operate on a theme that has been quantified as 'absence'. Historically, Murky Lake and the area around it had the highest number of disappearances per capita within New Mexico, despite the fact that the population at its peak was 103 people. This rate declined following the abandonment of the town in 1936.

Several other items serve to support this theme of 'absence', including:

  • A complete lack of wildlife within an uneven 5km area, centered around the skeleton of a horse behind the former general store.
  • A lack of chlorophyll in plant life; despite this, plants continue to grow normally.
  • The inability for music to be played or performed in any form, whether live or recorded. The sole exception to this is whistling, which [DATA EXPUNGED].
  • The tendency for groups of five or more individuals to lose at least one member while inside SCP-5352; in most cases, this is simply a temporary separation.
  • The lack of bacterial or fungal species existing outside of human bodies, which is believed to account for the relatively well-preserved state of Murky Lake.
  • Random 'gaps' in buildings, wherein pieces of furniture, walls, and even load-bearing beams are physically absent, but the surrounding structure is not affected.

The eponymous Murky Lake itself is also absent, likely due to non-anomalous evaporation following the departure of the town's populace. The former lakebed still exists approximately half a kilometer to the north of the town. Notably, a large amount of human skeletal remains have been found atop and within the lake bed, and display signs of health issues that were common in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Of the recovered bodies, approximately 70% have one or more holes in their sternum or rib cage, while 5% were decapitated pre-mortem.

SCP-5352-A is a gap between two buildings on Main Street; records in Union County dated to this time indicate the existence of the town hall at this location. Individuals who enter SCP-5352-A often emerge soaking wet, despite the lack of water in the area, and bear minor ligature marks around their wrists, elbows, knees, and ankles, and major ligature marks around their neck.

At irregular intervals, between two and twelve humanoid figures are visible within SCP-5352-A. They are intangible, and have not responded to Foundation attempts at communication, excluding Incident 5352-05, which resulted in fifteen Foundation casualties.

Directly across from SCP-5352-A is SCP-5352-B, which refers to a space beneath the town undertaker. SCP-5352-B is accessible through a trapdoor on the ground floor. Personnel who have entered and exited SCP-5352-B cannot recall any details about its appearance but have been able to retrieve items from within. Visual recording equipment uniformly fails when in this space, but audio recording has detected the sounds of glass breaking underfoot, metallic clanging, and a large amount of flowing water. Despite claiming to be an undertaker, items retrieved from SCP-5352-B include several non-standard tools and chemicals, including needles, straight razors, cleavers, tattooing ink, sulfuric acid, and a branding iron with the head in the shape of a twelve-pointed star.

SCP-5352-C refers to an anvil within the remains of the blacksmith at the northern-most edge of the town of Murky Lake; this building would have been the closest to the lake itself, and is the most heavily-affected by the 'gap' phenomenon present in SCP-5352, with over 75% of the structure physically absent.

SCP-5352-C has been modified in such a way that makes it impractical to be used in metalworking— the face of the anvil has a hole in the center which runs through the body of the anvil; sounds of running water can be heard from the underside, speculated to be the same underground channel detected in SCP-5352-B. The horn of SCP-5352-C has been sharpened to a point that would make it unsuited for shaping metal. Given the amount of human blood found on SCP-5352-C, and the presence of SCP-5352-C-1 in the same building, it is speculated that SCP-5352-C was some form of altar.

SCP-5352-C-1 is what Foundation researchers have termed a 'ritual garrote'. SCP-5352-C-1 consists of a 40cm length of human sinew wrapped around a metal wire, with a pair of 15cm long handles at either end that terminate into sharp points. Each handle is carved with the shapes of six humanoid figures. Testing has confirmed that the wire of SCP-5352-C-1 is sharp and strong enough to decapitate a human being. The handles are irregularly shaped, and fit within the Pritchel and Hardie holes atop SCP-5352-C's face.

At irregular intervals, starting at noon and ending at sunset, the building containing SCP-5352-C will become impenetrable to visible light. Thermal imaging has shown twelve humanoid figures within, apparently looking at SCP-5352-C. When this phenomenon ends, another portion of the blacksmith containing SCP-5352-C will have vanished.

SCP-5352 was re-discovered by the Foundation following the disappearance of the crew of Following the Leylines: Ghost Town Explorers, a paranormal reality TV show that was filming its pilot in the vicinity. While their equipment was found scattered throughout the town and their vehicle parked on the lake bed, the only evidence of any crew member was a hat located on the ground outside of SCP-5352-A which, based on brain tissue recovered inside, belonged to host William Plunkett.

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