This is the second real SCP attempt I've made, although I'm wondering right now whether to keep it the way it is, make it more serious, or just keep going the direction that it's going and make it into a full joke SCP. It's right on the borderline as it stands now, and I'm concerned about the tone not fitting on either the joke or main SCP list.
Tone is right, and the idea is good, but it kind of lacks menace. It doesn't really have a feeling of character (yes, I know it's a liquid, but even objects have their own sort of character), it just sort of feels like someone going: Here is some liquid, it's dangerous, do not touch.
Examples of character in objects: SCP 161: The first thing you notice is the picture. When people see that, it more or less gives the reader whimsical 'expectations', I suppose, which in turn augments the WTF factor when you realize just how dangerous this thing is. It's like this: a picture of a man with fangs is scary. A picture of a little girl with fangs is scarier, because the archetypal innocence of the little girl gives us 'expectations' that are violated by the horror associated with fangs. This makes her all the more scarier, and in turn gives her more character.
Am I rambling? Quite possibly. Just thought it might be useful.
PS: The paragraphing's a bit chunky. That's with a h, and not an l. It's at a size where it's big enough to make most people glaze over it, but it's small enough that it continually attracts our attention. May I suggest a picture to break it up a little?
May I suggest a picture to break it up a little?
I thought about that, but considering the description, the idea of photographing it might break willing suspension of disbelief (you would have to illuminate both it and the area around it to get a photograph, and doing that would violate the containment procedures). I had a sudden flash of inspiration while writing that, though, and decided to include a photograph of the explosion =)
Giving character to a coat of shellac seems difficult, but I decided I would play with that by giving it character through a lack of character, if that makes any sense. Dr. [EXPUNGED] is now concerned that it could be alive.
I also made the most obvious connection for where this thing would come from, given the fact that I wanted to make it clear that it wasn't actually alive ("unknown perpetrators" might suggest that some random person just put it there with it leading them to). That's probably going to make it a bit controversial in and of itself, given the flack that group gets, but who would be more likely to make paint that kills you?