He'd never seen it in person and now he never would.
Item #: SCP-13175
Object Class: Euclid
Special Containment Procedures: Total containment of SCP-13175 has been determined to be impractical at this point in time. Current protocols dictate monitoring of anomalous effects produced by SCP-13175 by on-site personnel. Monitoring of on-site personnel for symptoms analogous to any known anomalous effect caused by SCP-13175 is to be conducted by off-site personnel by means of remote viewing, analysis of documents produced by on-site staff, and psychiatric evaluation.
Addendum 04/14/2377: SCP-13175 is currently scheduled for permanent decommission on 08/01/2377 following unanimous vote by the O5 Council. Extraction protocols for personnel and civilians within the hypothesized effect vicinity of SCP-13175's decommission are under review pending…
Aiden Reichardt minimized the file before resting his head softly on the keyboard of his terminal. The computer sputtered several pings and pops at the repeated and faulty commands his forehead was transmitting before falling quiet, matching the deafening silence that was Reichardt's only companion in the otherwise empty office. He had returned from lunch several hours prior to an email from Silvers informing him of the addendum's appearance.
"Following unanimous vote by the O5 Council.” Those fucks. What had begun as a dull ache behind Reichardt's left eye after opening the email was now a roaring engine of pain, slowly draining what little fight remained in the Senior Researcher. Not a single goddamned pity vote, even.
The flask was in his jacket pocket and was, as always, full. He had been terrified when he'd stolen the anomalous object from an incoming shipment of items cleared for designation and containment, but the fear had only made the drink taste better. The risk of termination, of termination, was minimal; the flask was assuredly just another anomalous object that would be locked up and forgotten within weeks, only seeing the light of day again during annual inventories. Reichardt was proud of himself for the relatively minor transgression. He'd made an honest-to-God decision and followed through. It was easy for him to imagine his father and grandfather, both long dead and former Foundation staff themselves, nodding in approval; he had been raised in a household that respected protocol but despised the Foundation's single-mindedness in containing every little thing. They're sucking all the mystery outta life, his grandfather would say. Reichardt commiserated with the thought as he tried to suck all the mystery out of his flask. He'd never been able to place the flavor but it vaguely reminded him of a whiskey he'd had on his first trip off of the station in his early twenties. Traveling off their artificial little satellite for vacation was still a new concept in those days and Reichardt had figured himself on that trip to be the first member of his family to touch the soil of any planet in well over a century.
His monitor faded to black before beginning its screensaver cycle; an old one he'd dug from an archive of software from the Earth days, its low-resolution twisting pipes were garish but offered him a nostalgic moment for a world and time that Reichardt never experienced himself. He stared at the colorful pipes as they wound their way across the void of his screen, slowly filling its blackness with vivid greens and pinks, thinking about Earth.
He'd never seen it in person and now he never would. The designation of an entire planet as an SCP object wasn't a new concept when they'd classified Earth as SCP-13175 but even still it had been a point of controversy. As interplanetary travel had become a more regular occurrence, one fact had become unavoidably obvious: anomalous activity existed everywhere to some degree but there was no place within humanity's reach that had anywhere near the quantity of anomalies as Earth. Reality was simply less stable there, as the science had proven. Reichardt had been several years into his career with the Foundation at that point when the file went live. In the intervening three decades the O5 Council had never made any comment on the subject and quiet warnings were issued to those who began questioning the decision too loudly. Reichardt remembered it as the day his father resigned; moreso, he felt like he had watched a part of his father die that day. Following the intentional decolonization of Earth in the 2170s the planet had been used as a resource; within decades it was a ghost of its former self, a husk that had been thoroughly reaped and left to decay back into the soil it had once emerged from. Less than a million people were still on Earth. The number of stalwart populations who'd stayed behind, religious fanatics and survivalists and those who believed that mankind should stay where he came from, had dwindled to almost nothing and few were the researchers or industrialists who believed that the planet had anything more to give. There were still a few Foundation-controlled facilities even, or so the rumors went. Keter objects whose threats of global or galactic destruction the Foundation hadn't been willing to risk leaving behind to chance.
Why now, then? Reichardt's body ached from being in his cubicle chair for too long but the soreness was rapidly dulling behind the mask of his growing inebriation. He stood for the first time in hours and stretched, staring out the nearby window at the vast universe beyond. Earth wasn't visible from this station and Reichardt felt a twinge of regret. He'd never married or sired children and as an only child, he was the last in his line. No Reichardt would ever step foot on Earth again, and at his age he would likely not be approved for off-site travel until his retirement. Even then there was no guarantee. What's changed? The twisting pipes on his monitor had fully covered the screen and quickly blinked out of existence, the fresh blackness penetrated by red and white pipes this time.
Alone in the emptiness of space with tens of thousands of others, Aiden Reichardt felt more than a single planet slip through his grasp.
Item Description: A flask of an unidentified alcoholic liquid which is constantly replenished as it is drained.
Date of Recovery: 4/16/2377
Location of Recovery: Recovered from the personal effects of a deceased employee on Foundation Satellite Station ████-███.
Current Status: In storage.