rating: +111+x
Item#: SCP-7173
Containment Class:
Secondary Class:
Disruption Class:
Risk Class:


5m x 5m x 5m containment chamber.

Archived Containment Procedures (1 of 2): SCP-7173 instances must not be employed for the containment of SCP objects. SCP objects contained within SCP-7173 instances in contravention of this directive must be subjected to increased security scrutiny, and all related documentation must undergo thorough review.

Archived Containment Procedures (2 of 2): All Foundation staff must review internal training materials 7173-I2.Guide for Newcomers. and 7173-I5.How to Write an SCP Database File. and pass the associated examinations before engaging in containment-related activities.

Special Containment Procedures: The Records and Information Security Administration is recording and categorizing all suspected instances of SCP-7173. A full schedule is available on request. Regular O5-sanctioned audits are being conducted at all facilities to identify new instances, which will be addressed on a case-by-case basis.

Archived Description (1 of 2): SCP-7173 is a 5m x 5m x 5m containment chamber constructed from reinforced steel and concrete, with two guards posted at the door..Much less commonly, instances have been recorded with smaller cubical dimensions or shorter ceiling heights. SCP-7173 instances have been constructed and staffed at various Foundation facilities since at least 2008 independent of need or practicality, without written authorization and in contravention of established containment protocol..Said protocol dictates far less liberal use of space, resources and manpower.

This style of construction was the hallmark of Dr. Bartholomew Hughes, addressing the specific containment needs of the Antimemetics Division and never meant for adoption by the wider Foundation. Dr. Hughes never internally published his design specifications, and his own existence is passively antimemetic for unknown reasons (likely related to the duties he performs/performed), and it is therefore unclear how they have been disseminated globally to personnel unaware of his work. When questioned, affected staff express confusion and false memories relating to the appropriateness of SCP-7173 and its importance to the Foundation's overall containment effort.

Database files associated with SCP objects quartered in SCP-7173 fail document review nine times out of ten. Though containment protocol forbids the use of SCP-7173 instances, staff continue to use them regardless.

Archived Description (2 of 2): SCP-7173 is a constellation of impractical containment practices adopted simultaneously at Foundation facilities around the globe with no apparent trigger, against official policy and absent compelling justification. Instances include:

  • construction of unnecessarily large containment chambers with precise dimensions, typically cubical, always specified in advance;
  • requiring O5 Council permission for experimentation on low-priority SCP objects;
  • allowing humanoid SCP objects to access staff amenities such as libraries or cafeteria;
  • incorporating SCP-148 ("telekill" alloy) into containment chamber construction despite well-documented health and safety risks;
  • allowing researchers to access SCP objects for personal use, or 'contain' them in their quarters or office space;
  • issuing official warnings against inappropriate behaviour involving SCP objects already clearly prohibited by the Universal Code of Conduct;
  • engaging in personal relationships with SCP objects, up to and including romance;
  • resisting or insisting on the decommissioning of SCP objects when the opposite course of action is clearly indicated.

A strong correlation has been found between SCP-7173 instances and inadequate containment procedures, typically resulting in associated database files failing document review.

Description: SCP-7173 is a phenomenon wherein established and documented Foundation procedure is subverted by the addition of foreign elements of unknown provenance, with a rapid simultaneous adoption rate worldwide. After intensive statistical analysis, instances have been correlated to one of two outcomes: increasing the likelihood of SCP database files being found inadequate, or far less often, contributing to increased organizational efficiency.

New personnel are at heightened risk of adopting problematic and/or discredited instances, whereas veteran personnel are more likely to adopt instances associated with continued success, though this correlation is not 1:1. Instances producing unfavourable results gradually fall out of general use, though new personnel continue to be at risk with no obvious effectual decay. In every case affected individuals claim to 'remember' that their behaviour is correct, but cannot back up these memories with concrete evidence when pressed. The present theory, as proposed by Dr. Bradley Fellows of Site-232, is that SCP-7173 represents some irreducible and spontaneous form of collective institutional memory suffusing the SCP Foundation as a result of its long-term anomalous operations.

The earliest identified occurrences of this anomaly were impractical containment chambers and procedures discovered at various Foundation facilities. It is now known that the phenomenon covers a vast range of behaviours and beliefs, none of which can be properly reconciled with established best practices or explained away as isolated incidents. A brief digest of examples still presently uncategorized follows.

Uncategorized instances remaining in common circulation include:

  • use of unlikely personal pseudonyms among staff (i.e. Dr. Gears, Dr. Stuff, Dr. Trebuchet, etc.)
  • use of Kabbalah-derived terminology for object classes (i.e. Keter, Thaumiel, Da'aS Elyon, etc.)
  • belief in the existence of an absent organizational founder entitled "The Administrator";
  • belief in the existence of a "proposal" system for the SCP-001 database file;
  • fascination with obscure SCP objects, typically those contained at Site-19 or Site-17.

Uncategorized instances falling out of favour include:

  • use of nonstandard facility designations (i.e. "Site 19" vs. "Site-19," "site" vs. "Site," etc.)
  • use of nonstandard terminology (i.e. "amnesiacs" vs. "amnestics")
  • belief in the existence of a fourteenth Overseer;
  • belief that senior personnel are immune from disciplinary consequences;
  • fascination with cross-testing anomalies.

Addendum 7173-1, Instance Portfolio: This collection of documents was compiled by Dr. Bradley Fellows of Site-232 to present his theory about SCP-7173's nature to the Classification Committee, resulting in the present iteration of this file.

The following details the first instance of SCP-7173 recorded at (then Provisional) Site-232, within Strathroy-Caradoc Plaza in Ontario, Canada.

Date: October 10, 2021
Officer of Record: Rain Gallant, Captain MTF Lambda-232 ("Interference Pattern")

Approx. 1630 hours: MTF Agents McManus and Gao came to the security office during operational hours, accompanied by a non-Foundation-affiliated Plaza Maintenance Technician, to report an altercation.


Janitors [sic] closet, Strathroy-Caradoc Plaza.

The Agents recounted that they had separately been patrolling the mall’s utility corridors, as they were assigned to do, at roughly 1430. They both reported having no memory of the following two hours, with normal memory resuming amid admonishment of the civilian Technician for attempting to access the containment cell they were set to guard, while he confusedly insisted that the cell was only a broom closet. Upon careful inspection, the Agents determined the Technician to be correct. I assured the Agents that their experience would be investigated by Foundation personnel. I dispatched the civilian to First Aid to request an amnestic.

The broom closet in question was subsequently found to be precisely two cubic metres in volume.

Discussion with First Aid personnel suggests that the civilian subject had become "defamiliarized" (or according to the Amnestics Technologist "re-unfamiliarized," though I am unaware of the distinction) with the necessary information imparted to him since his prior incident. I will suggest the Medical department look into finding a means of excluding the location of the First Aid Station and the pronunciation of the word "amnestic" from amnesticization in future.

On a related note, I have already rejected four requests to store new SCP objects in this broom closet. Dr. Delacqua insists that it "just feels right," though she cannot justify this impression. I think perhaps I will need to have two conversations with Medical re: amnestics.

— Dr. Bradley Fellows, Acting Director, Provisional Site-232

The following is an excerpt from an aside between Dr. Heather Delacqua and (then Acting Site Director) Dr. Fellows, cross-referencing archival documentation of an event of interest.

OCTOBER 11, 2021

Dr. Delacqua: Oh for Christ's sake.

Dr. Fellows: What's wrong?

Dr. Delacqua: These stupid… like… censor bars. Why do they do this?

Dr. Fellows: Redactions? Yeah, that's just something they did in old documents. Turns up in new ones not infrequently.

Dr. Delacqua: It's wildly inconsistent. Like this one here. [pointing at screen] They blacked out the province, but not the town. Are they just hoping I'll think there's more than one and be unsure?

Dr. Fellows: I hear there's three Portlands.

Dr. Delacqua: Hmph, both more and fewer. But Kapuskasing? Is there more than one Kapuskasing? How many Kapuskasings are there, Fellows? How many Kapuskasings?!


Kapuskasing, Ontario.

Dr. Fellows: It's pronounced Kapuskasing.

Dr. Delacqua: I know it's pronounced Kapuskasing. I'm not a Yank. I'm accentuating the absurdity of it.

Dr. Fellows: Does the absurdity need your help?

Dr. Delacqua: And here! I can read the month, the year, but not the day? Is someone worried we're going to celebrate the anniversary of this mass, sudden-onset, terminal autocoprophagia event?

Dr. Fellows: I guess, for whatever reason, they decided some of this information was sensitive?

Dr. Delacqua: These aren't scans, they're online documents. Why redact? Why not just edit the information out? And these are prepared for Site Director level viewing, but the redactions are hardcoded, a higher clearance level won't allow the information to be viewed because it's gone, at least where this document is concerned. The only people who can know what's under the redactions are like… time travelers, the guy who did the redactions, and God. What's the point?

Dr. Fellows: [shrugging] I guess I've just gotten used to it. If it's any consolation, it's not common practice anymore.

Dr. Delacqua: Yes, but clearly [gesturing to screen] history haunts us.

The following is an excerpt from an "open house" intranet relay chat conducted by Dr. Fellows to canvas for further potential SCP-7173 instances.

  • C_Desruisseaux_232 (Chief Technician Chip Desruisseaux) has joined the discussion.

C_Desruisseaux_232: You want to hear about bureaucratic lunacy, boss?

B_Fellows_232: That's what I'm here for!

C_Desruisseaux_232: Okay, how's this. Used to be we had four or five object classes, and we all knew what they meant. A Keter breached containment, that was bad. Then one day some archivist at 87 decides his uncontained anomaly needs its own special snowflake designation, and he calls it Archon. I asked him why he did that once. Wasn't any precedent. He tells me he has no idea, doesn't know where the idea came from, wishes he hadn't done it. I know for a fact the Apollyon guy's the same story.

B_Fellows_232: Oh, this.

C_Desruisseaux_232: Suddenly it's de rigeur, even though absolutely nothing in our doctrine justifies it. We've got a hundred of these damn things now, with unidentifiable non-indicative icons and names translated into Latin or Lithuanian or whatever the hell for absolutely no reason except occluding what they mean, when they mean anything at all. Nobody can justify a single one, and I'm stuck here trying to figure out whether I should be afraid that there's a Chokhmah loose in the facility or not. Somebody better be working on a cure.

B_Fellows_232: But object classes have never indicated the danger of an object, or anything about how to recapture it when it escapes. They're an internal code for HMCL supervisors, who have to draw up and maintain the containment procedures and need some way to compare similar approaches at a glance. They couldn't do that when all they had was Safe, Euclid and Keter.

C_Desruisseaux_232: No, I'm pretty sure they're about danger.

B_Fellows_232: Well, every training manual you've been meant to read says different. If something breaches, you don't look at the object class at all. You either hide, because if it got away it's probably dangerous, or you read the conprocs if it's your job to fix the problem. A lot of "Safe" anomalies can end the world, right? You need to compare threat levels, you look at the risk and disruption classes. We might not be able to figure out precisely why we started doing it, but that's the rule. I wish I knew why people keep getting this wrong. Probably yet another case of the new anomaly.

C_Desruisseaux_232: Hey man, don't work yourself into a rage state.

B_Fellows_232: Sorry, a what?

C_Desruisseaux_232: Nevermind.

C_Desruisseaux_232: But you didn't cover my whole complaint. Why are the names and icons so opaque? There anything in the training manuals about that?

B_Fellows_232: …no. Not as such. That's just… the way we've been doing things.

C_Desruisseaux_232: Why? And since when?

B_Fellows_232: I don't know.

C_Desruisseaux_232: I rest my case. Bureaucratic lunacy.

The following is an excerpt from a consultation between Dr. Fellows, Dr. Wiegand Anetzberger and Dr. Albrecht Wandernoth regarding SCP-7173.

OCTOBER 14, 2021

Dr. Anetzberger: Always my day is brightened to encounter new researchers on their first assignments. Stars in their eyes, the thrill of it all.

Dr. Wandernoth: So excited to be starting!

Dr. Anetzberger: Yes.

Dr. Wandernoth: Most can be saved.

Dr. Anetzberger: Most, when supervisory staff rise to the occasion. Most can learn this very complex profession with minimal harm to equipment or humans. But inevitable is one throughline, in every cohort: some avoid the aid we provide, forge ahead with initial credentials on ill-advised plans any veteran would urge them to abandon, and thereby achieve disaster.

Dr. Fellows: Don't you need two experienced researchers to sign off on your containment procedures before you put them into practice? When you're new?

Dr. Wandernoth: Again, this rumour.

Dr. Anetzberger: Again. No. When a researcher is certified, research may begin.

Dr. Wandernoth: Signing-off for mentoring program, producing best results. Not mandatory.

Dr. Fellows: Ah. I didn't know that. I didn't have to get signatures for the mentoring program, because [inaudible].

Dr. Wandernoth: What? What?

Dr. Fellows: I already knew a senior researcher, and he looked at all my early stuff.

Dr. Anetzberger: Fortunate.

Dr. Wandernoth: Most not so lucky. Most taught by experience.

Dr. Anetzberger: Or not experience—

Dr. Wandernoth: Yes yes, or extraneous factor intrudes. Experience of others, aerosolized, inexplicable. Unpredictable element of larger pattern?

Dr. Anetzberger: A trained professional researcher takes their first assignment, rushes through, botches the job, we are forced to send in scrubbers when the dust settles. Prior knowledge, prudence, experience do not matter, they ape errors they never saw committed. Baffling. I have deleted many files, their subjects wasted, consigned to the archival dustbin, many times even the author gone, nothing learned from the mistakes.

Dr. Wandernoth: Some live, learn.

Dr. Anetzberger: Yes, Dr. Wandernoth, some live and learn. Cannot learn from mistakes never made. There is value in failure, but value also in not failing when failure is not inevitable.

Dr. Fellows: Right… but that's not really what I wanted to talk to you about. I'm more interested in why it happens in the first place. We throw all that briefing material at people, make them pore over training manuals for skill-testing questions, and the folks we hire are the cream of the crop already… and yet they still somehow get this all-consuming idea they can read one or two files from twenty years ago, then go out there and be the next Dr. Clef. Why?

Dr. Wandernoth: Alien conception from alien mental climate. Stronger than all warning notices in world. Infectious quality to creation of containment procedures—

Dr. Anetzberger: —infectious, yes, but [raises voice] not alien. The human rush to create, the human capacity to fail. Gripped by a fever, either burned alive or left alive. Wastage or wisdom. A voice from the past—

Dr. Wandernoth: Or present.

Dr. Anetzberger:or present, yes, speaks to us, and we listen. And sometimes we learn.

Dr. Fellows: And sometimes we have to learn the same thing over and over again.

Dr. Anetzberger: Yes, well. The new must always learn the old, so the old may learn the new.

The following is a diary entry by Dr. Fellows, dated 17 October 2021.

Consulted Azzopardi for a Chronometrics perspective tonight. Asked if 7173 could represent other timelines bleeding into ours. She said something like "are you asking me whether the things you will tomorrow remember having remembered today which never happened yesterday might have happened yesterday and be remembered being remembered tomorrow in a different today?" and I said "uh" and she said "or are you asking me whether there are other todays which will someday be tomorrows, and they're sending you their yesterdays today?" and I said "uh" and she said "because technically the timeplane is infinite so every tomorrow has already been today yesterday sometime, sure, I guess" and I said "okay, thanks."

I think that was Azzopardi for "my job is not an excuse for you to throw up your hands and not do yours."

The following is an excerpt from a preliminary interview conducted as part of Site-232's assumption of full Site status between Acting Site Director Dr. Fellows and an O5 Council-designated auditor identified as Dr. Blue.

19 OCTOBER, 2021

Dr. Blue: [holding up instrument readouts on paper] Can you explain this to me, Dr. Fellows?


Instrument readout.

Dr. Fellows: God no, I barely know my times tables. I'm not that kind of scientist.

Dr. Blue: What is your field of expertise?

Dr. Fellows: Paraanthropology, with a minor in applied supralinguistic thaumatosemiotics.

Dr. Blue: [scoffs] Not any kind of scientist.

Dr. Fellows: Many would argue! That's why I prefer the word "scholar" myself, but the Foundation, like any sociocultural unit, has its traditions, its rituals. So I play the role.

Dr. Blue: You're wearing a labcoat.

Dr. Fellows: We are the priests in our temples, and these are our vestments! [gesturing to both men's coats]

Dr. Blue: Scientists wear these because they are easy to keep clean and they readily show spills and contaminants. It's not a costume. Scientists wear labcoats for practical reasons.

Dr. Fellows: Yes, but why do scholars wear them?

[Silence on recording]

Dr. Fellows: …so, you were asking about the readings?

Dr. Blue: Hmm? Oh, [mumbling].

Dr. Fellows: Pardon me?

Dr. Blue: It is weird though, isn't it?

Dr. Fellows: What's that?

Dr. Blue: I mean, having said it, I can't stop thinking about it. Sure, I came up as a scientist, but it's not as if I'm out here doing titrations. I'm an auditor, I'm basically an accountant who's been told to act scary. So why the white coat? It's weighing on me.

Dr. Fellows: Like I said, we work in temples of science, we are frocked in its colours.

Dr. Blue: But you don't find this odd? It doesn't shake you to realize that something that feels so foundational to your work that you don't even think about it is just… performative? To me it suddenly feels… alien.

Dr. Fellows: I'm trained to be this way.

Dr. Blue: Trained?

Dr. Fellows: Yeah, look, those old-timey explorers, the forerunners of my field, they treated humans like animals—

Dr. Blue: Aren't we?

Dr. Fellows: Well, sure, but certainly strange ones, and anyways the real reason we treat animals that way is we can't do any better. We can't know how they see the world, what they believe, if they even believe anything. We can't talk to them. With other humans we can do better, but those guys? They missed so much by dismissing the people they studied as backwards, primitive. Dismissing their customs as superstitions. I mean, it's easy to think that that medicine man gathering birch bark, specifically birch bark, for a poultice, is just some sorcerer, until you learn where we first got aspirin from. [chuckling]

Dr. Blue: What?

Dr. Fellows: It makes me think of my mother.

Dr. Blue: Your mother?

Dr. Fellows: Yeah, she had to take HRT for early menopause, hysterectomy, you know. Anyways she got on the internet and figured out that the pills she was taking had been made from mare's urine. Horse piss. Or at least, that's how they were originally made, I don't remember, long time ago.

Dr. Blue: That's unappealing.

Dr. Fellows: She thought it was hilarious.

Dr. Blue: What does this have to do with your training, though?

Dr. Fellows: Oh, yeah, right. Well we realized that we were missing all of this important stuff, and we were constructing these really inaccurate sketches of entire cultures, and making bad assumptions, all because of this one, pesky, human universal: bias. So we had to find a way to remove that bias as much as possible.

Dr. Blue: Surely that isn't something you can ever just… be rid of though, is it?

Dr. Fellows: No. But we figured out an elegant and actually pretty obvious way to minimize it.

Dr. Blue: Go on?

Dr. Fellows: You buy in. You don't approach people's culture and beliefs like they're uninformed, or irrational. All of the magic, and the ritual, and the, for lack of a better word, the "superstition," it has to be real to you. Or you have to treat it like it's real anyways. Rationally, sure, this new baby looks the same as the one his mother lost last year because how different do babies ever really look anyways? But they tell you it's reincarnation, they tell you it's the same baby again, and if you want to have any hope of understanding these people with any more depth than moths pinned under glass, you'd better accept that that's the same baby again.

Dr. Blue: So how does this explain the coats?

Dr. Fellows: Man, I told you, we wear the coats to be in the tribe. That's how it works.

The following is a diary entry by Dr. Fellows, dated 19 October 2021.

I don't know if I'm overthinking this. I've just finished explaining to someone how cultural relativism works, and yet I'm looking at examples of our culture and wondering which are alien interventions in our reality and which are just convergent evolution or simultaneous invention. Our memories on the matter are unreliable, that much is certain. At least some of the time we're picking up seemingly random brainwaves from each other at the speed of light, across the globe — and that's not something even real light can do, I'm fairly sure. It doesn't make sense… but if everything that doesn't make sense is a symptom of 7173, then what distinguishes it from the overall catalogue of strangeness? In the end I think I'm deeply unsettled at having to admit that we, the caretakers of the anomalous, might be inherently anomalous ourselves.

That, or the Foundation has a mind of its own — and it leaks.

When the first instance occurred at 232, we blamed the Mnemarchs of Lethaios. A little unfair, but anyone with a name that overwrought ought to understand the power of nominative determinism. Then we checked out all the other local GoIs, and once we'd exhausted that exhaustingly exhaustive list, we started on the big fish. Put the GoI Research Group out of Site-55 on the case, checking into the Chaos Insurgency and Are We Cool Yet? and something with a German name the very mention of which made Wandernoth physically cover his ears and start humming a Kraftwerk song very loudly. And when that was all over with… we started actually examining ourselves. Why was that the order of operations? Why did we leap to external sabotage like a bunch of paranoiac lunatics?

I ask myself this, and then I think… wait. When did I become so defensive of Groups of Interest? So I call up my contact at 55, and they are wearing a Doctor Wondertainment t-shirt. I hear Site-64 is letting some zoo in Oregon store all their anomalous animals. Site-91 has contacts with the Serpent's Hand. Site-120 is friend to the Fae, and if I recall correctly we once tried to genocide them. Maybe twice? And I'm forced to realize I'm probably staring down the barrel of another 7173 instance. When I started with the Foundation, we sorted GoIs into two groups: hostile, and neutral. I still feel that impulse to be suspicious. Our training tells us to consider motivations, practicalities, exigencies, and that inexplicable voice in the back of our heads drowns it out with "you're a shadow government, they're all out to get you, get them first!" And that illogical xenophobia somehow coexists with the fact that at some point in the 2010s, again with no basis in protocol, a statistically significant minority of my peers started playing nice with the normalcy neighbours. What. The. Hell.

It's not just inconsistent, it's two different streams of inconsistency running parallel to each other within each of us. Like there's two different versions of the Foundation, and we all belong to both. Or like we swap out our hivemind for a new one every few years, just to see what happens.

The following is an excerpt from an informal discussion between Dr. Fellows and Site-232 Security Chief Gurshanveer Singh, following the appointment of Site Director Ostrander.

NOVEMBER 8, 2021

Chief Singh: I'm just sayin' bud, after Kabul not much shocks me, but that's a weird one.

Dr. Fellows: I didn't think there were many Sikhs from Afghanistan?

Chief Singh: …in the war, goof. I'm a Scarbs boy,.Scarborough, Ontario. but I've seen some shit. Why'd you think they gave me this job?

Dr. Fellows: You disapprove?

Chief Singh: Nah she's cool. Just weird having like a J-Horror witch as a boss.

Dr. Fellows: [laughs] Should you be talking about your boss like that?

Chief Singh: No dis, it fuckin' rules, just weird you know? Time was we'd put her in a box, now she gets the corner office with a view.

Dr. Fellows: Her office is in the windowless sub-basement of a flagging, run-down mall.

Chief Singh: Figure of speech.

Dr. Fellows: I know what you mean though. You worked at 43, yeah?

Chief Singh: Yeah, just patrol, this place was my big promotion.

Dr. Fellows: Movin' on up eh? Well you remember the Director, pretty regular old guy.

Chief Singh: He was French, wasn't he?

Dr. Fellows: I don't think he was French, no.

Chief Singh: I mean either way, I don't think he was magic.

Dr. Fellows: The other day that one guy from Site-Whatever came by and said he needed to discuss something with her. Inter-Site operational matter.

Chief Singh: The spooky guy? With the… the…

Dr. Fellows: …the thing, yeah, that guy. Well he wanted to talk to her and I tell him she's out, so I'm like, temporary Acting Director again right? Anyways, guy says to me "Out like not on-site or out like that thing where she's in her office but perceiving all sides of a tesseract simultaneously or communing with a giant eyeball in dream space or whatever it is she does?"

Chief Singh: Open secret, eh?

Dr. Fellows: Yeah I think like, we all know it's weird, but we're all doing it anyways.

Chief Singh: Does it work?

Dr. Fellows: It hasn't not worked.

Chief Singh: So far.

Dr. Fellows: So far, yes.

The following table contains statistical data culled from SCiPnet by artificial intelligence conscript.

Unverified SCP-7173 Instances [RANDOM, 5]
The belief that D-class personnel are to be terminated at the end of every month..Protocol clearly stipulates that containment specialists may choose between termination or amnesticization.
The belief that D-class personnel are death row inmates, individuals from another timeline or plane of existence, clones, or demoted Foundation researchers/agents..D-Class personnel are in fact [REDACTED].
The use of redactions in containment procedures or explanatory notes.
Referring to sapient SCP objects by their full SCP designation at all times..In addition to posing an obstacle to conversation flow, this practice tends to alienate subjects and negatively impacts their cooperation with containment personnel.
Constructing SCP database files in the manner of an epistolary narrative with an obvious moral or didactic purpose, rather than a clinical account.
SCP Database Files Deleted, 2021 Calendar Year
SCP Database Files Deleted, 2021 Calendar Year [CROSS-REFERENCE: SCP-7173 INSTANCES IMPLICATED]
SCP Database Files Created, 2021 Calendar Year [SURVIVING]
SCP Database Files Created, 2021 Calendar Year [SURVIVING, CROSS-REFERENCE: SCP-7173 INSTANCES IMPLICATED]

The following is an excerpt from the minutes of a roundtable discussion between Dr. Fellows and Site-232 researchers already involved in his initial investigation of SCP-7173.

JANUARY 16, 2022

Captain Gallant: So, you any closer to cracking the code?

Dr. Fellows: I don't think so. We can definitely prove that 7173 is real, but as for what's causing it… I'm out of ideas.

Dr. Delacqua: Perhaps you should check with the more esoteric Departments. That's how we ended up with a Site, after all.

Dr. Fellows: Ha ha.

Dr. Azzopardi: Have you spoken to anyone from Pataphysics?

Dr. Fellows: No.

Dr. Azzopardi: Would you like to? I think I know a few experts who should still be alive in this time period.

Dr. Fellows: No.

Captain Gallant: I think we've wasted enough time on this. Take a ridealong with my people, see some skips and Bixbys slinging shit at you in the field, it'll put these small potatoes in perspective.

Chief Singh: There's another one.

Captain Gallant: What?

Chief Singh: Bixby. Why do we call reality benders "Bixbys?"

Captain Gallant: Uh… it's in the covert pickup code. You're stuck out in the public wilds, you find a phone and call the number, you say "Bixby actual"—

Chief Singh: But why would that be relevant? The pickup code's got nothin' to do with reality benders.

Dr. Delacqua: I always thought they were both references to Bill Bixby.


Bill Bixby (left).

[Dr. Azzopardi suddenly blushes and looks away]

Dr. Delacqua: From My Favorite Martian and The Incredible Hulk. In one, he's hanging out with an anomaly the government wants their hands on. In the other, he's on the run. Seems to fit.

Dr. Fellows: But that's just more confusing. We've been saying these things for ages, and they're widespread. You think somebody in the Department of Containment was a big sixties TV fan, and just slotted that stuff in there? And then it caught on? Universally?

Dr. Anetzberger: We could look it up. Certainly it was first used in very prominent context, filtered down from there.

Dr. Wandernoth: Was not. Ten operational regions same time, not all with television or the Bill Bixby.

[Silence on recording]

Dr. Fellows: How are you the one who knew that?

Dr. Wandernoth: Always someone does, large staff meetings.

Dr. Anetzberger: Always.

Chief Desruisseaux: Come to think of it, yeah. Someone ought to look into—

Dr. Fellows: Can we focus on the collective haunting in front of us, first? If this conversation has told me anything, it's that we're going to be seeing these things everywhere we look now. Mental artifacts appearing in our universe out of nowhere, spreading like wildfire, then either fizzling out or setting our hair ablaze in defiance of the odds. It's built into us. We're an ever-evolving trope of ourselves.

Dr. Azzopardi: At least we're evolving! As far as you know.

Captain Gallant: Oh, holy shit.

Dr. Fellows: What?

Captain Gallant: You know the big theory about the Chaos Insurgency, right?

Dr. Fellows: Is it the one where they're a high school performance art project gone horribly wrong?

Captain Gallant: What? No. Where did you hear that?

Dr. Fellows: I made it up.


Captain Gallant: Jesus Christ, now someone halfway across the world is gonna start thinking that for no reason.


Captain Gallant: I meant the one where they were a Foundation offshoot. Maybe we made them for false flag ops, maybe they split off in a civil war, but either way they used to be the Red Right Hand.

Dr. Fellows: Yeah, I've heard that. Only thing about them that makes any sense at all, honestly.

Captain Gallant: Right. They split, tried to pay us back for whatever with sabotage, theft, and assaults. Same sort of stuff they were doing for us to begin with.

Dr. Fellows: Right.

Captain Gallant: But they're still doing it all these years later. Petty theft, bomb threats and spooky messages. They half-reinvent themselves occasionally, but it never quite works out. They get back in that same rut.

Dr. Fellows: Right…

Captain Gallant: Like there's something deep down in their makeup that wants to evolve the strategem, but not enough, because it's been decades since they were with—

Dr. Fellows: Oh. Oh.

Captain Gallant: Yeah.

[Silence on recording]

Dr. Fellows: That's almost tragic.

Chief Desruisseaux: The whole thing is tragic. Everybody getting jerked around by the dead hand of the past, forever.

Dr. Delacqua: I don't know, I think it's kind of nice. Not the Insurgency theory, but the parts pertaining to us, the ones who learn. We're working through this together, gradually becoming our better selves. Sure, there's a few blind alleys—

Captain Gallant: —where people are getting mugged and murdered—

Dr. Delacqua: —but for the most part I think the zeitgeist is pushing us in the right direction.

Dr. Fellows: It's making us weirder.

Dr. Delacqua: Yes.

Dr. Fellows: It's making us weirder, Heather. You think that's an improvement?

Dr. Delacqua: Have you seen the world lately? If anything we're figuring out where we fit in, how to live and let live in a maximally objective sense.

Dr. Anetzberger: Guided by those who came before, those who glimpsed the destination but not the path entire.

Dr. Wandernoth: Core of scientific method. Shoulders of giants. Sometimes shoulders strong, sometimes bowed. Angles funny. Still reaching higher.

Dr. Delacqua: Precisely. And in the midst of that… mist of hazy precedent, we're also iterating. Innovating. Trying new things, seeing if they work.

Dr. Anetzberger: And forgetting, and trying again?

Dr. Delacqua: That's society. Two steps forward, one step back. Still gets you somewhere in the end. We've got how many thousand files now? Must be doing something right.

Dr. Fellows: Whole lot of deleted or archived ones and lost researchers, though. That's a high price to pay.

Chief Desruisseaux: Well it's not like every deleted page represents something getting loose and killing somebody. Erasures and do-overs are standard, got to keep all those researchers hard at work. Obviously there weren't twelve hundred containment breaches in 2021, those don't happen just because of weird page formatting or bad clinical tone.

Dr. Fellows: No, but there were still a lot more mistakes than you'd expect from an organization with such a high bar of quality.

Dr. Azzopardi: It's the high bar of quality that makes us see these things as mistakes. And it's hard to know which ideas will introduce a new paradigm, and which are dead ends, when you can only see the past and present from where you're standing. No offence.

Dr. Fellows: Hmm. That's almost—

Dr. Wandernoth: Reality story everyone writes together. No first draft perfect.

Dr. Fellows: Okay, that felt like the moral. I guess we're done.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License