SCP-6338


rating: +20+x
Item#: 6338
Level1
Containment Class:
safe
Secondary Class:
none
Disruption Class:
dark
Risk Class:
notice

Special Containment Procedures: SCP-6338 is to be kept at all times in a reinforced glass box, with dimensions of 3.5 by 3.5 by 0.5 metres. This box must be transparent enough that the contents can clearly be observed from outside, and should not be covered by any opaque material for any extended length of time. It should also be secured by at least 1 (one) padlock of Class 1 or higher. The box containing SCP-6338 is to be kept atop a 5.5m tall concrete pillar that has been erected especially for this at Foundation Site 18-S in Antarctica. A strict no-fly zone is to be maintained over a 15km radius circle centred on this pillar.

Description: SCP-6338 is a 3.02 metre long child's skipping rope. The skipping rope is unfurled into a straight and almost taut configuration, and is placed on a roughly trapezoidal shaped piece of double wall corrugated cardboard (SCP-6338-2). The skipping rope, including its handles, forms a sort of 'barrier' that impedes the progress of any sentient life form attempting to pass over it. It is unclear how high this barrier extends above the rope (see e.g. Interview #1), but experiments have not found any short or long-term effects for sentient life forms passing underneath SCP-6338.

The mechanism behind the 'barrier' created by SCP-6338 is unclear, but the way it manifests has been well-studied. Any sentient or near-sentient individual may freely pass over SCP-6338 once with no ill effects. There does not seem to be anything physically preventing a conscious being from crossing the rope a second time, but such beings without fail 'change their mind' before crossing it and abort the attempt. If a conscious being is to be 'forced' across the rope by the actions of another sentient being, then this 'mind changing' property is transferred to the instigator of the attempt, and the attempt will likewise be aborted (see e.g. Interview #2).

Experiments have established exactly what classifies as a 'conscious being' for the effects of SCP-6338. All live vertebrates and most invertebrates are unable to cross SCP-6338 a second time, but some extremely simple animals (jellyfish and sponges) seem to be unaffected by it. Artificial intelligences, no matter how advanced, are able to freely cross SCP-6338 an indefinite number of times. To our knowledge, no animate SCP-class objects or persons have ever attempted to cross SCP-6338, and hence the consequences of such an eventuality are unknown.

All attempts to separate the skipping rope from the cardboard sheet have thus far failed, and both rope and cardboard are seemingly infinitely rigid. In addition to this, the cardboard sheet cannot be freely reoriented in space, and its top surface is locked to be perpendicular to the local direction of gravity (e.g. the skipping rope is always 'on top' of the cardboard sheet from the perspective of an observer on the ground).

Further experimentation on SCP-6338 is considered very low priority, and hence has been suspended since 2016 on ethical and resource allocation grounds.

Recovery Log and Containment History: SCP-6338 was recovered by Field Agent Morris on March 12, 2009 from the campus of the University of █████████ in La Serena, Chile. At this time SCP-6338 was held in a storage facility operated by a college fraternity. While at this location, the object received infrequent use as part of an initiation or 'hazing' ritual for new student members of the fraternity, who were tasked with jumping over it without spilling cups of alcohol held in both hands. Interviewees suggested that a member of the fraternity originally found SCP-6338 on a nearby commercial street after noticing that, during peak hours, pedestrians would form a bottleneck rather than cross what they described as a 'weirdly uncomfortable piece of trash1'.

Upon recovery, SCP-6338 was transferred to Secure Storage Locker G-859 at Foundation Site KY-5 in Boone County, Kentucky. The object remained secured in this location until a containment review on July 14, 2011, when SCP-6338 was transferred to storage in a new glass containment structure built at KY-5, designed to prevent accidental approaches of the rope. SCP-6338 remained at this location until April 3, 2013. On this date, as a direct result of the Flight 188 incident (see e.g. Interview #1), SCP-6338 was relocated to Site 18-S in Antarctica. SCP-6338 was held at this site without significant incident until January 7, 2016, when an unauthorised person was able to gain access to the object and removed it from its containment (see related text in Document SCP-6338-D01[U]). The containment status of SCP-6338 remained unknown until it was recovered by Field Operatives on October 1, 2016, at the abandoned Soviet Antarctic research station at Sovetskaya. As a result of this incident, the containment procedures for SCP-6338 have been amended to recommend that the box containing it be locked when not in use.

Research Note: It was long assumed that SCP-6338 operated by imparting an urge to avoid it onto sentient creatures through some unknown psychocognitive or memetic mechanism. However, extensive experimentation with Class-B Tracer2 mnestics have all but eliminated this possibility. In addition to this, attempts to communicate with SCP-6338 through telepathic means have failed (see experiment notes in SCP-6338-D01[U]), suggesting that SCP-6338 is neither sentient nor possesses a will.

Our current best theory on how the SCP-6338 barrier works is a sort of universe-wide survivorship bias. As is well documented, whenever a decision is made by a conscious entity, the universe splits in two at the point the decision is made, with each new universe playing out as if a different decision was reached. Under this theory, there is nothing physically or mentally stopping a conscious being from crossing SCP-6338 a second time, but the consequences of doing so would inevitably result in the The Foundation ceasing to exist. As such, we necessarily must live in a branch of the universe where, by chance, each attempted second crossing of SCP-6338 has been voluntarily aborted. This implies potentially catastrophic implications of a conscious being crossing SCP-6338 a second time; however, as this object was likely initially located on a street in a high-density commercial area, it has likely been crossed many times and resulted in thousands if not millions of causally adjacent dead-end universes with no lingering effects on the universe we currently inhabit. As such, and given the mitigating factor of SCP-6338's extremely remote location, a rating of Safe continues to be recommended.

Relevant Interviews:

INTERVIEW #1

Interviewed: Clarissa Daniels

Interviewer: ██████ Morris, Class-B Researcher at Foundation Site KY-5, in Boone County, Kentucky.

Foreword: Clarissa Daniels was the head flight attendant on ██████ Flight 188 from Memphis, Tennessee to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on March 18, 2013. This aircraft is believed to have directly overflown the former location of SCP-6338 when it was stored at Site KY-5.

Closing Statement: Clarissa Daniels was subsequently transferred to the Foundation Site TN-041, along with the other passengers and crew aboard the aircraft, to have their memories reconditioned to believe the fatalities on Flight 188 were the results of spontaneous heart attacks. The two men who instigated the incident, now identified as ██████ █████ and ███████ ████████, are believed to have been aboard another flight circa 2012 which also crossed over the airspace directly above SCP-6338.

The body of ██████ █████ was found in a field near Covington, Kentucky on March 19, and the body of ███████ ████████ was found further south in a heavily wooded area in Gallatin County on March 30. Autopsies indicate that both victims died of catastrophic blunt force trauma caused by a terminal velocity fall. A background search on both victims found no signs of depression or suicidal tendencies. As such, their simultaneous decision to exit the aircraft above Boone County is likely tied to an unconscious decision to avoid crossing the barrier above SCP-6338 a second time. As a result of this incident, SCP-6338 was transferred to its current location at Site 18-S, far from any commercial flightpaths, and a no-fly zone has been established around its location.

INTERVIEW #2

Interviewed: ███ Waynright, seasonal Class-C Researcher at Foundation Site 18-S, Antarctica

Interviewer: ██████ Morris, permanent Class-C Researcher at Foundation Site 18-S, Antarctica

Foreword: Waynright was the Secondary Investigator on Project Mouseover, a series of experiments designed to determine exactly which creatures or other beings can or cannot pass over SCP-6338, which ran from 2013 to 2016. The second phase of the project, starting in 2015, set out to measure the effects of a sentient being crossing the rope not under its own volition, but due to the conscious action of another sentient being. Due to an operational error on the part of Researcher Waynright, the experiment failed and both human subject and vehicle were lost.

Closing Statement: Researcher Waynright resigned from The Foundation on December 6, and was transferred back to the United States for decomissioning. A request for a grave plot alongside that of D-11412 was declined.

Relevant Documents:

Document SCP-6338-D01[U]

Document Description: SCP-6338-D01[U] is a series of experiment logs and memoirs written by former Class-C Researcher Morris between January and June 2016. The documents describe the events leading up to the SCP-6338 containment breach on January 7, 2016, as well as the results of a number of unauthorised experiments on SCP-6338 involving fraudulently obtained Class-C mnestic agents. SCP-6338-D01[U] also contains many other documents including the official Last Statement of former Researcher Morris, as well as numerous unsent letters from former Researcher Morris addressed to estranged family members in the United States. In total, SCP-6338-D01[U] consists of 75,318 words in approximately 138 separate documents; only a selection of relevant portions of SCP-6338-D01[U] are presented here.

IMPORTANT NOTICE! - researchers should consider all scientific results presented in these documents to be extremely unreliable, due to the deteriorating mental state of the author and their increasing hostility towards the Foundation.

Closing Statement: SCP-6338-D01[U] was discovered in its entirety at Sovetskaya Research Station on October 1, 2016, alongside SCP-6338 and the severely dessicated body of former Researcher Morris. Document SCP-6338-D01[U] was found in digital form on a Samsung Galaxy S7 cell phone, which was placed on the floor adjacent to the body of Morris. The files that make up SCP-6338-D01[U] were found in three subdirectories, entitled 'DOUBLECLICK_LOG', 'DOUBLECLICK_RES' and 'ILOVEYOU'.

The files of SCP-6338-D01[U] that are not presented here are held securely at Foundation Site KY-5, apart from parts 114 to 137 inclusive, which have been destroyed in the interests of Foundation security.

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