"After the objects are processed and given SCP designation, we organize them into three main classes; Safe, Euclid, and Keter. Safe-class objects are the simplest to contain, more often than not requiring minimal procedural deviation, maintenance, and observation. The most strenuous…"
Trighit yawned and surveyed the monochrome hallway. He was glad that he had been pushed to the back of the group; now, there was no reason to mask his boredom with Dr. Grant. Everyone else seemed rapt in attention towards the so called "scientist's" speech.
"I've yet to see a single scientific thing," he muttered.
Though the building looked like neat and orderly enough, there were noises and murmurs coming from the rooms lining the hallways. Trighit focused his attention on the humming he heard emanating from a room on his right. He nudged Pokum and motioned with his head towards the door and the documents sitting in a bin attached to the wall beside it. The assistant shook his head, put one finger in front of his lips, pointed ahead of him, and refocused on the speaker.
"Well, fine then. I'll just look for myself," he quietly fumed.
Trighit edged over to the door and took one of the sheafs of paper down.
Item #: SCP-1517
Object Class: Euclid
Special Containment Procedures: All instances of SCP-1517 and SCP-1517-A are to be contained in cryogenic…
"I don't care, I don't care," he mumbled to himself as he replaced the documents and reached for the handle. "I just want to know what it is…"
"Mr. Triggit, was it?"
The squat researcher retracted his arm and turned around.
"I-It's pronounced 'Try-it,' actually." he shakily responded working his tongue awkwardly around the unfamiliar words.
"Yes, well, my apologies Mr. Trite. Anyways, though I'm sure you're eager to see the example Euclids, we'd prefer to let our personnel handle the containment. If you could please step back?"
Trighit let out a long, relieved breath as he moved back towards Pokum.
"Now, as I was saying, Euclid-class objects are typically the objects that require moderate amount of attention and protocols. In this room are some fine examples of Euclid-classes. Doctor Peters, if you don't mind?"
The woman nodded, swiped a keycard in the panel adjacent to the bin ("How had I not noticed…?"), and opened the door. Trighit whipped out his ever-present notebook and excitedly craned his short neck, trying to see into the room.
The thrill was short lived. Instead of revealing a new, incredible specimens and environments, the room looked just like the hallway outside; gray, sterile, and boring. A row of white tubes lined the walls, each equipped with a module identical to the one found outside of the door.
"Certain Euclid-classes are deemed to be most easily, effectively, and safely stored in cryogenic suspension. Take a look here at these specimens." The man lifted his own keycard attached to a lanyard around his neck and swiped it through the attachment on one of the tanks. The front of the structure opened with a hissing noise, and the doctor retrieved several objects from inside.
"Now, these here are instances of SCP-1517-A, the eggs of SCP-1517. These may look like gobstoppers, but…" the man stopped short. Trighit was waving one hand in the air while frantically writing in his journal that was balanced on one of his legs with the other. "Yes?"
"What is a gobstopper?" he asked, readjusting to use his now free hand to support the journal.
The man blinked. "It's, um, a type of candy."
The hand shot up again.
"What kind of creature is 'candy?'" Trighit could feel Pokum's questioning stare, but he ignored it.
"It's… um… well…" Grant was lost for words. He turned to his companions who simply shrugged. The man set down the spheres and rummaged through his pockets, pulling out a wallet. Handing a dollar to his other coworker, he instructed, "Fredricks, go buy a packet of Skittles from the cafeteria vending machine."
The agent paled slightly. "Sir, ah, I'm not quite familiar with this wing, maybe Peters would be better for this?"
Grant groaned and started debating quietly with his two coworkers after assuring Trighit and Pokum that this was all normal custom. While the researchers were engrossed in their spat, the Antarctican scientist quickly grabbed three of the balls and pocketed them.
"Ah, sir, I'm sure you could always show me later!"
The three scientists, glanced over and quickly regained their composure.
"Mmhmm, yes, it's a minor detail anyways. I'm sure you're much more interested in the behavior of the species."
"Yes, sir. Please continue." Trighit replied with a smile on his face stretching ear to ear.
As Grant continued to talk about the behavior of the insects, Pokum nudged his friend frantically, clearly worried about the dangers posed by his actions. In reply, Trighit shook his head, put one finger in front of his lips, and pointed with the finger on his other hand towards Grant.
"Every day with you, I swear!"
The pair of Antarcticans had been escorted to their room after the tour ("Them? Stay with me? I will not allow it."), where Pokum immediately began chastising his compatriot.
Trighit laughed. "Calm yourself Pokum, it's just some research, no big deal. I'll study them, take some notes, and have them back before they even notice."
"Do you even think about what you do? This isn't back at home where no one cares how many threxans you coerce from the pack, or how many hyrechi you dig out of the ground! You're going to get us executed before we've been here for more than a week, you fool!"
He chuckled again. "You worry yourself too much, friend. We're not in trouble, are we? No one noticed, yes?"
Pokum remained silent and he crossed his arms in front of his chest.
"Bah, this is the whole reason why we came, isn't it?"
"No," he spat, "This is the whole reason why you came, Trighit. I came to make sure you didn't get yourself hurt or killed, and that's it. I've told you, I don't care about this stuff, I care about you! Now, go put it back, apologize, and maybe they won't leave us to rot."
"Sir, um… it appears that we're missing a few of the SCP-1517-A instances."
"The candy bugs, sir."
"The ones we used as example Euclids for the researchers from SCP-1483?"
"…Shit. Send Peters over to that wing to double check the count on each skip in containment and send Fredricks down to their room, and if they don't find it there, declare a containment breach."
Trighit sat in shock. "Y-you don't care? Since when?"
The assistant kneaded his forehead in frustration. "Trighit, I don't know how many times I've tried to tell you. I always came along just because you wanted me to, and, well, you're my friend. You just never listened because you were always too focused or fascinated by whatever happened to be that day's subject. I actually kind of hate all of this."
"But Pokum, I always… I… I'm sorry."
"Don't worry about it." He sighed. "Look, let's just put them back. No one will have to know, we can probably use these card things they gave us to get back in. We'll just go along, studying— well, observing the things they tell us to— and then, when the excursion is all over, we go back home where no one cares how much of what animal you take."
"Yes," the scientist replied hollowly. "They're in that flask, right on the desk."
Pokum silently went over, and dumped the contents into his hand.
"I'm going to go try to put these back. Stay put."
A sharp knocking on the door made them both freeze.
"Hey, this is Agent Fredricks. Open up!"
The two paled and looked at each other.
"Oh God, what do we do?" mouthed Trighit.
Pokum shrugged while frantically scanning the room for a place to hide them.
"Keep him busy for as long as you can, I'll be there in a minute." Pokum mouthed, quickly maneuvering towards the bathroom.
Trighit ran to answer, but the door of their room flung open, and in walked a tired-looking man attired in a suit.
"Alright, it's room inspection time." he said, any former traces of humor and ease gone.
"Whatever for, Agent Fredricks?" the squat visitor asked, trying to keep his voice from shaking.
The agent glared at him for a few moments before responding. "A few of SCP-1517-A's eggs didn't make it back to containment after your tour of the site. We're trying to find them now."
Trighit tried to put on his most genuine smile. It didn't work.
"Well, I do hope you locate them."
The agent grunted and moved towards the beds, upturning everything and inspecting all of the sheets. Trighit angled his head towards the bathroom to look at his companion, who quickly tossed the eggs into the toilet. Pokum edged out of the bathroom as quietly as he could, but the squeaking of the door's hinges as he tried to close it caught Fredrick's attention.
"Hey, what were you doing in there?"
"I was, ah, just trying to…" Pokum stumbled over his words as he searched for an alibi. By the time he had thought of one, the agent had pushed past him into the small room.
"Not even a day into this thing and already…" The pair could hear him mumbling from the room as they stood silent, erect, and terrified. Soon after, a clanging resounded in the room, accompanied by yelling and the sounds of things falling and glass breaking. The agent ran out, arms covered with crawling colorful insects.
His screaming only lasted about fifteen seconds. The Antarctians didn't stop screaming for a while, not until more people came, hosed down the agent, and shoved the pair down the hallway to the Site Director's office.
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