rating: +31+x

Item #: SCP-5578

Object Class: Neutralized

Special Containment Procedures: As SCP-5578 is presently categorized as Neutralized, with all relevant documentation having been seized and archived by the American Secure Containment Initiative, no further containment procedures are necessary.

Description: SCP-5578 was American farmer John Dough (b. 1783), following an anomalous alteration on August 7, 1816, in which the subject's body was converted entirely into confectionary foodstuff - specifically, gingerbread. SCP-5578 was witnessed by dozens of civilians, who have provided differing accounts of the entity's appearance. Several sources claim that SCP-5578's lips and eyeballs remained unaffected by this transformation, whilst others report that the subject's eyes were replaced by gumdrops or sweet nuts, adding that its head hair had been turned to black licorice. SCP-5578 has not been sighted since the date of its alteration, and its fate remains uncertain, although is currently considered Neutralized.

History: The year 1816 (colloquially known as the Year Without A Summer) saw widespread crop failure and resulting food shortages across the northern hemisphere, believed to have been caused by the eruption of Mount Tambora the previous year, the strongest volcanic eruption in recorded history.

In early August, John Dough, a 33 year old widower residing in Oswald, Massachussetts, is reported to have murdered his intellectually disabled son, Edmund, before cooking and cannibalizing his remains. This is supported by the fact that ASCI operatives would later discover the charred bones of a prepubescent human boy buried beneath the floorboards of the Dough residence.

The circumstances of SCP-5578's transformation remain unclear, although it is believed to have occurred no more than three nights after Edmund's murder. On August 7, numerous Oswald inhabitants awoke to a strong, pleasant aroma similar to that of freshly baked goods, and headed towards the Dough residence to investigate. SCP-5578 managed to escaped through a back window, and was pursued for by several Oswald inhabitants for over three miles, one of whom managed to break off the subject's left arm, which was promptly consumed. SCP-5578 was last seen fleeing into the nearby woods, where it has not been sighted since.

Addendum: Following its disappearance, SCP-5578 has since been subject to a number of fairy tales and apocryphal accounts, as determined by the Department of Mythology and Folkloristics. The most common variation of these stories claims that after fleeing its persecutors, SCP-5578 encountered a group of wolves whilst wandering the woodlands, with one biting off its right leg.

The now two-limbed SCP-5578 is said to have taken refuge atop a nearby tree, using the largest branch it could find to fend off the birds, with the hungry wolves waiting patiently below. As the hours passed by, with SCP-5578 growing famished and the wolves showing no signs of departure, it is said that SCP-5578, becoming increasingly aware of its own pleasing scent, proceeded to paradoxically consume its entire body in a single bite.

Whilst such accounts are believed to be fictitious in nature, stool samples taken from the local wolf population some time after SCP-5578's disappearance were confirmed to contain traces of gingerbread. Additionally, on the night of August 8 at around 0130 hours, the town was struck by a small earthquake, causing minimal damage to nearby buildings. While there were no casualties, the origin of the quake has not been determined, with a number of Oswald residents claiming to have awoken to what was described as an enormous belch originating in the surrounding woodlands, which lasted for approximately three seconds. Further investigation is ongoing.

Gingerbread cookies made to resemble humanoid figures have increased in popularity since the beginning of the twentieth century, with a popular alternative name for these biscuits being 'John Doughs'. Whether this is due to the spread of stories pertaining to SCP-5578 or purely coincidental is unknown.

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