rating: +72+x

Item #: SCP-6087

Object Class: Keter

Special Containment Procedures: Currently, all known instances of SCP-6087-A are contained in individual cells located in Site-24's C-Wing, and are to receive weekly counselling sessions with Drs. Isadora Hill and Colin Eastland. All suspected cases are to be investigated by Mobile Task Force Pi-1 ('City Slickers'), with confirmed instances transported to Site-24, and Class-B amnestics administered to all witnesses. Further research into the origin of SCP-6087 is currently being undertaken by the Department of Mythology and Folkloristics.

Description: SCP-6087 is an anomalous phenomenon occurring principally in western Europe, affecting children between the ages of six and twelve years old. Affected persons (designated SCP-6087-A) are characterized by an inability to exercise all forms of vocal communication. Medical analysis has revealed no physical explanation for this condition, and all attempts to reverse SCP-6087's influence (including speech therapy and laryngeal transplant) have been unsuccessful.

Certain behavioural patterns have been found to increase a child's susceptibility to SCP-6087's influence. These include habitual lying, use of profanity, and general disregard for authority figures. In all cases, SCP-6087's effects first manifested whilst the subject was sleeping. In the immediate aftermath, most victims will report mild throat pain, accompanied by an unpleasant taste (usually likened to that of expired meat), which may persist for days afterwards. SCP-6087-A are also subject to periodic auditory hallucinations, which typically occur whilst the subject is alone, and manifest as the sound of distant cries and moans.

There are currently five known cases of SCP-6087-A spontaneously regaining their ability to speak whilst in Foundation custody. All such incidents took place several years after entering containment, and coincided with the total cessation of auditory hallucinations. Notably, in all occurrences, each subject was found to speak using a markedly different pitch, tone and regional accent.

Precisely when SCP-6087 first manifested is unknown, although archived documents inherited from Her Majesty's Foundation for the Secure Containment of the Paranormal (HMFSCP)1 suggest that containment procedures were first implemented at some point in the early nineteenth century.

Addendum: SCP-6087's discovery was roughly concurrent with the publication of the earliest known literary reference to the Voice-Taker (also known as Der Stimmstehler)2, a mythical character originating in western European folklore. The following is an extract from the revised edition of Of Myths and Monsters (1910) by British historian and folklorist Horace Greenblatt, which contains one of the most detailed accounts of the Voice-Taker currently in Foundation possession, provided by the Department of Mythology and Folkloristics:

The Voice-Taker


Modern representation of Der Stimmstehler.

Depictions of the phantom known as the Voice-Taker, scourge to all wicked and unruly children, have remained remarkably consistent across the centuries. This unsightly revenant is described as a tall, festering figure wearing a thick beard made not of hair, but instead comprised of countless, ever-swarming flies and maggots. In life, the Voice-Taker (who is given no Christian name) is said to have been born with a mouth much too big for his face, a deformity which most tellings attribute to his gossiping mother. Consequently, his cries throughout infancy were so loud and frequent that they caused the family cottage to shake on its foundations, keeping his parents awake well into the early hours.

The boy's father, fatigued and desperate, sought the counsel of a learned cleric, well versed in the ancient craft of alchemy. The priest provided him with a rare tonic of golden hue, once utilized by a certain unspoken sect of silent monks in the Far East. This potion, the priest assured, would silence the boy's screams for a year and a day, allowing his parents some much-needed rest. While the priest specified that only three drops were necessary for the desired result, the boy's father, skeptical of the elixir's potency, insisted on forcing the concoction in its entirety down his son's oversized mouth. This had the unfortunate effect of rendering the boy permanently mute, earning him much taunting and mockery from his peers.

Years passed, and the boy was soon put to work on the family farm, until late in the winter of his nineteenth year, his life was cut tragically short. Whilst wandering the forest in search of fire wood, he tripped and fell down an old stone well, which had long ago fallen into to disuse. Although his parents searched for many weeks afterwards, because their son was unable to call for help, he was never rescued, swiftly succumbing to the elements. As he could not be afforded a Christian burial, the Voice-Taker's spirit remains earthbound, cursed to spend the ages wandering the mortal plane.

The Voice-Taker's experience has given him a strong appreciation for the value of speech, and an even stronger disdain for children who take theirs for granted by telling lies, using swears, and neglecting their nightly prayers. Disobedient youth are warned that if they refuse to correct this behavior, the Voice-Taker will visit them in the night, where they will awaken to the pungent stench of earth and decay. Upon catching gory glimpse of the maggot-bearded monster looming before them, the victim will inevitably open their mouth to scream. Yet before sound can escape, the silent specter strikes, extending one bony arm down the wayward child's throat, and stealing their voice away, before stuffing it into his burlap sack.

Once his bag has reached its fill, the Voice-Taker deposits his stolen treasure where their owners can never retrieve them, at the bottom of the same well where his body now lays. It is said that on clear nights, his victims' voices (which, in their disembodied state, are incapable of producing all but the most primal screams and moans) can be heard as faint echoes on the wind. In rare cases, once seven years have passed, the Voice-Taker may decide to return articulation to one of his victims, provided they have exhibited exemplary behavior in the interrum. However, as this creature has a tendency towards carelessness, those voices restored only seldom correspond to those originally taken, often leading to situations where boys are mistakenly given the voice of a girl, and vice versa.

Further study has confirmed that all instances of SCP-6087-A have exhibited varying degrees of familiarity with this folk tale, suggesting that SCP-6087's effects may be infohazardous in nature. Efforts to eradicate the legend of the Voice-Taker from the European cultural zeitgeist are ongoing.

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