Interviewed: Janice Erickson
Interviewer: [Redacted pending unrelated evaluation, referred to as "Interviewer" throughout log]
Foreword: Interview held after recovery of SCP-472. Subject was part of household staff at the residence from which SCP-472 was recovered. Subject aware of SCP-472's existence and effects, but had to be informed that SCP-472 was specifically a garnet stone formerly located in [REDACTED]'s jewelry collection.
Interviewer: Tell us how you first became aware of the stone's properties.
Janice Erickson: The stone? Or what the stone does?
Interviewer: The stone's properties. What it does.
Janice Erickson: Well, I - alright, I'd always heard stories from people about how [REDACTED] Manor was haunted. But you know, I never believed in ghosts or haunting or any of that tripe. I still don't, I guess. I don't really know what to… never mind. I wouldn't have taken the haunting stuff seriously anyway. Big old mansion with an old rich white dude who lives alone? Of course people are going to say it's haunted. People think everything's haunted.
[Subject pauses, requests glass of water. Request approved.]
Janice Erickson: Anyway, I was right. The house was never haunted. It was just that room. Or I guess the stone.
Interviewer: How did you first enter [REDACTED]'s employment?
Janice Erickson: One of my friends told me about the job posting. Mr. [REDACTED] is kind of creepy, okay, but he paid… the job offer was like three times what you can get anywhere else. My friend Elizabeth got hired with me. My sister Maddie was supposed to apply too, but she had a friend who was one of Mr. [REDACTED]'s old staff, before he went and fired everyone the time before, and they warned her not to go. She tried to talk me out of it, but I'm a single mom, okay? You don't pass that kind of thing up.
Interviewer: You said Mr. [REDACTED] has previously fired all members of his household staff?
Janice Erickson: Oh yeah, he did. I guess he did that every few months. Just fired most of the new people. He only kept a couple people for longer than that, before me, but the last one of them died a few months after I was hired. Carla, her name was.
Interviewer: What do you know about the cause of Carla's death?
Janice Erickson: I don't know. She was old. Maybe it had nothing to do with the, um, haunting, I don't know. Maybe she was just old. Anyway Mr. [REDACTED] hired me right away, I think he liked me. All the rest of the staff were new, too, except for Carla.
Interviewer: When did you first encounter the stone's effect?
Janice Erickson: I didn't for a while. We were all assigned to clean different parts of the house. Carla wouldn't let us talk to each other in the house, said Mr. [REDACTED] didn't like it. But you know, some of us talked outside of the house. They mentioned a creepy feeling about the third floor atrium - the atrium is where Mr. [REDACTED] kept all his best things on display. There were hundreds of things in that room, you know - all these jewels in display cases and swords hanging on the walls. The whole room was kind of creepy, though. It had these big glazed windows and this big glass roof that Mr. [REDACTED] kept totally covered up by black cloth and there weren't many lights in there. You know, shadows everywhere. There was just no reason that room had to be so creepy. I think he made it that way because he was kind of a dick, actually. Never actually treated us like real people… I don't know. I'm sorry. What were we talking about?
Interviewer: Your first exposure to the stone's effect.
Janice Erickson: Oh. Right. It was month or two after I started working. Carla made me go find Margery, who'd been assigned to clean the atrium that week. As soon as I got into the room I heard this sound in my head. Like thump-thump, thump-thump. I couldn't tell if it was far away or coming from inside my head. I was pretty creeped out by that, but what was I gonna do? I told myself I was imagining it and went through the atrium to find Margery. I call for her and she doesn't respond. The lights were all low, like I said, and the room was like a maze with all the display cases and old things with curtains over them. Finally I find her slumped over in back of one of the display cases. She looks at me but it's like she doesn't really see me. She keeps muttering something about blood on the walls, but I look around and everything seems normal. Creepy, but normal. I'm still hearing the thump-thump noise and it's going faster and I realize it's my own heart.
[Subject pauses for breath and takes a drink of water.]
Interviewer: Continue, please.
Janice Erickson: I dragged Margery out of there as fast as I could. And I felt fine after. I even felt a little silly. Margery got better after a while, said she just had a bad day and she was sorry and it wouldn't happen again. She was never a friend of mine so I didn't ask her any questions about it.
Janice Erickson: After that she took a week off from work. When she came back, she didn't want to go back to the atrium. Said it was a bad memory. Carla made her go back. Mr. [REDACTED]'s orders apparently. After like thirty minutes or so we hear her just… screaming. Like she was being murdered. She came rushing down the stairs babbling about seeing dead bodies and they were looking at her, and she could see more blood on the walls and she wasn't imagining it this time. Carla made her calm down and took her into a room and ordered us out. They spent a while in there. When they came out, Margery left without speaking to us. Carla told us she'd quit and was given severance pay. Later on one of the other maids told us Margery was paid to keep her mouth shut and move away. Later on we heard she killed herself. I don't know if that's true or not. [Pause] Is it true? Do you know anything about that?
Interviewer: I'm sorry, that is classified information. Please continue.
Janice Erickson: Oh. Okay. Well I don't know who was cleaning the atrium after that. Maybe nobody. I didn't really get on much with the other maids. None of them seemed to like me. A couple were friends with Elizabeth, and she kept telling me things about the third floor atrium. Her friends said they'd heard from other people that the atrium was haunted because of everyone Mr. [REDACTED] killed to get all those valuable things on display in there. There was this creepy looking tapestry in there with skulls on it, African I think. Covered one of the windows. Elizabeth and her friends were convinced this was haunted by the ghosts of some dead slaves or something.
Interviewer: Where did they get that idea?
Janice Erickson: I don't know, it was just something they heard. A month later, Elizabeth finally married her out of town fiancee and moved away to [REDACTED]. After that, the other staff didn't talk to me. I never got assigned the atrium, but every so often I thought I heard the heartbeat when I got too close to that part of the third floor.
Interviewer: You informed our agents that you'd had prolonged exposure to the stone yourself. How did that come about?
Janice Erickson: Well first off I didn't know it was the stone. I thought it was the tapestry, or just the room. One day Mr. [REDACTED] went on one of his rampages - he did that now and then, walked around the house yelling at all the maids and then going into empty rooms and yelling at no one. Then he fired everyone. Everyone except me, Carla, and some ridiculously young girl with big tits who worked in the kitchen.
Interviewer: Why do you believe he didn't fire you?
Janice Erickson: I don't know. I wish I knew. Maybe it was because none of the other staff talked to me. Maybe just coincidence.
Janice Erickson: I ended up taking on most of the others' duties. Then Carla assigned me to clean the atrium. I wasn't happy about it, but I was now getting paid even more because I was doing so much more, and I didn't want to get dismissed. So I go into the atrium again.
[Subject pauses again, takes another drink.]
Janice Erickson: And I heard my heart beating, of course. Again. I saw the tapestry with the skulls on it and I felt like they were watching me. I spent five minutes dusting in there and started freaking out. I thought maybe I'd end up like Margery and I just ran out of the room. I felt better pretty quick. But I had to go in again, you know? Apparently Carla hadn't been making anyone clean up in there since Margery left, so there was dust settled over everything. I didn't want to get fired and I didn't want to quit and I didn't want to make the stupid teenager in the kitchens clean haunted room all by herself. So I had to go back.
Janice Erickson: This happened… a few times. I couldn't stay in there long without freaking out. Sometimes everything would turn red and I'd feel like I was suffocating. I'd hear whispers everywhere, though I couldn't understand what they were saying - I kept thinking they were the ghosts noticing I was there, telling each other someone was here. I remembered Margery talking about blood on the walls and she'd only been in there half an hour. I couldn't stop looking at that goddamn skull tapestry. Eventually I figured… well… Mr. [REDACTED] doesn't even come in this room anymore. He's so old and sick and really, if the tapestry was haunted by dead slaves I'd be doing him a favor. It wasn't even that big and couldn't be worth that much, you know? So one night I …
Janice Erickson: You aren't going to tell him any of this, are you?
Interviewer: That is extremely unlikely. Please continue.
Janice Erickson: Like I said, I had no idea it was the stupid rock making all this happen. So I took the tapestry down - when I took it down, I saw blood on the walls behind it and I really freaked out. I was just going to hide somewhere but after seeing the blood I took the goddamn thing out back and I burned it. It really stunk when it burned. When it was gone, I felt better. I stayed out of the atrium for a week, just in case.
Janice Erickson: When I went in there again, of course I felt the heartbeat again. I was pissed. I told myself I was imagining things and I felt really guilty about burning the tapestry. Like… guiltier than you can imagine, guiltier than I'd ever been since I was a kid and accidentally killed my pet goldfish. I spaced out in the room and just kept cleaning and crying.
[Subject pauses, attempts to compose self.]
Janice Erickson: Then I heard faraway screaming and I stopped dusting and saw the blood trickling slowly down the walls. My eyes were all blurry with tears and I tried to wipe them away and my hand came back bloody. I saw … bodies. Naked dead rotting things, mostly half-hidden behind display cases. There was this dead dog and it was almost completely rotted and covered in maggots but was still trying to move and looked so horrible I couldn't even scream. I tried to run, I really did, but I couldn't make my legs move. I kept trying to yell for help but I couldn't. I was so sure I was going to die. This lasted … hours. I think I passed out and woke up a couple times. After a while I saw this corpse standing around, staring at the walls. Then out of nowhere he was staring at me. I think that was as close as I got to screaming because I really tried then. He never got close to me but he kept staring. He'd disappear and then reappear somewhere else in the room, staring at me again. I saw others, too, but they were on the other side of the room doing… I don't know. Something horrible, probably. And the blood never stopped leaking from the walls. Sometimes I thought I was covered in it. Sometimes it disappeared and then it would come back with new corpses. The thumping and screaming from faraway never stopped.
Janice Erickson: After a long, long time the corpses kind of faded and the room stopped seeming so red. It felt like being half woken up. I realized I could move my legs again and I got out of that room as fast as I could. I'd spent a little over twelve hours in there, alone.
Interviewer: Did you return?
Janice Erickson: No, I never did. The next day I went directly to Carla and told her I quit. But she immediately offered me double the high salary I was already being paid. Said Mr. [REDACTED] liked me, liked how quiet I was, and probably wouldn't be hiring anyone new for the next few weeks. I tried to tell her about the room and she clammed up and said something about 'fumes' and that she'd look into it. I went home and held my daughter for a long time and thought about what kinds of jobs I could get somewhere else. But the money … it was just too good. I convinced myself that I must have inhaled something weird, maybe some kind of delayed reaction from burning the tapestry, or maybe that was the revenge from the tapestry for burning it and everything would be fine now. So… I went back. I told Carla I'd take the offer if I didn't have to go in the atrium again. She wasn't really happy about it but agreed. And you know what? Everything was fine for the next two and a half months.
Interviewer: What happened after two and a half months?
Janice Erickson: I was taking a nap on a couch on the second floor at the end of my shift before going home. I'd gotten… comfortable, I guess. I was having anxious dreams and woke up to hear whispering. Familiar whispering, just like I'd heard in the atrium the other nights. I couldn't believe what was happening - I thought maybe I was still dreaming. Then the walls started bleeding and I couldn't walk again. That's when they… appeared.
[Subject pauses a long time.]
Interviewer: Please continue. Who appeared?
[Subject appears to be fighting back tears.]
Janice Erickson: The corpse from before. Staring at me. He was with my sister. She didn't look hurt, but there was something off about her. I was sure she was dead. And then they started talking to me.
Interviewer: What did they say?
Janice Erickson: They said I'd made it to the other side, that I only needed to take another step and then I'd know everything. My sister kept repeating something. - "God looks on the heart." "God looks on the heart." Then I felt like I was hallucinating or dreaming and they kept disappearing, coming back, saying the same things. Then I kept seeing the corpse-man from before staring and then laughing. Saying "You don't mean anything, this doesn't mean anything, you are going to die and nothing you are will matter." Then I saw him with Carla, and Carla looked half-rotted. He was back to saying what he was saying before, how I only needed to take another step and I'd know everything, and trying to promise me something but I couldn't make out what over the thumping and screaming which kept getting louder and louder. Carla didn't say anything, just looked at me with a blank face. She started mouthing something as the room got redder and redder. I'm bad at reading lips but eventually I figured out she was trying to say "It wants the foundation. Don't let them feed it." I don't -
Interviewer: Wait. Repeat your last sentence.
Janice Erickson: Carla was mouthing "It wants the foundation. Don't let them feed it."
Interviewer: Do you know what she meant by that?
Janice Erickson: I have no idea what any of them meant by any of that. Why?
Interviewer: Disregard that. Proceed.
Janice Erickson: Okay. Well, after that I managed to make myself move and I got the hell out of the house. By the time I got home I felt okay, just really shaken. I called my sister and told her that I'd had a really bad dream. I really expected her to be dead but she was perfectly fine and she's still fine. But Carla… I found out that Carla was dead. They say she passed away in her sleep, in her quarters [REDACTED] manor. So maybe that wasn't really my sister I saw, but it really was Carla? Maybe it killed her, or maybe she died and it took her… soul, I guess, and then came after me. I just don't know. Mr. [REDACTED] fell and ended up in the hospital the very next night. So is that a coincidence? I don't know. Maybe he'll say something to you - he sure hasn't said anything to anyone else. And… that's all, really. After that, you guys came along, so you know the rest better than me.
Interviewer: Thank you for your time, Ms. Erickson.
Closing Statement: Subject administered amnestics and released.