TO: PATAPHYSICS DEPARTMENT(ALL)
As many of you are aware, Pataphysics command has been working on an update on Dr. Swann's Narrative Sandwich model to keep us up to date with Metanarrativics' recent research. The document has now been released, and can be found here.
The gist of this update is the incorporation of Doctor Huever's Hypercanon theory, which holds that our reality is not a single narrative bulk below the Alpha layer, but an n-dimensional set of narrative planes connecting at defined conceptual points. The most notable concentration of these points is, of course, the Database. While the formation of these narrative planes is still being studied, the strongest coherent factor between them is Database Causal Inclusions - that is to say, instances of swn001-1 ("Horror Writer Entities").
Our very own Operation FLAT HORIZON has shown some success thus far in incorporating these planes, thus reducing their multiplicity. Our grasp on the Alpha layer has greatly increased in the last month alone as such. Knowing this, I propose we move to stage two of Operation ÓverMeta. With research into the mechanics of SCP-1304 and observation of SCP-2916-1 and SCP-2747, subnarrative entities capable of acting on and escaping to their upper layer, Procedure Kuzco-Bueller has been developed by Subnarrativics, utilising SCP-826, for the purpose of full narrative extraction - taking fictional entities and bringing them into our reality. We plan to create a task force of hypernarrative entities with this procedure, enlisting the aid of our standard scout as a recruiter, with the purpose of creating a new narrative plane under our influence that intersects with other narrative planes. Put into plain English: we're going to make a canon.
Many of you may be wondering why I'm explaining so many concepts to you in this missive. After all, this is old hat to anyone who's worked here for more than a few months. Some of the cleverest among you may already suspect the answer. Ladies, this letter is our canon's introduction. Welcome to the adventures of MTF-ι-0 ("NN"), reader. God help us, let's not get deleted.
-Dr. Penelope Panagiotopolous, Head of Pataphysics.
|Position:||Squad Leader||Recovered from:||Helm, G. (2015) Stronger Than Fiction. Paris, France: Hachette.|
|Gordon is a persistent narrative entity who remembers all works he is placed in with respect to the chronology of his upper layer. He therefore remembers all drafts, works and fanworks he is placed into with total clarity. Gordon has gained a notable internet following which places him within many crossover fanworks, primarily written fan fiction and fan art. Prior to extraction, it was often seen that these fanworks would, over time, change to reflect Gordon's knowledge and memory. This was widely believed to be the work of the author as a continuation of Gordon's story, and were tracked on the web page www.reddit.com/r/whereintheworldisgordondancer. Since extraction, these edits have ceased.
Gordon has has expressed extreme displeasure in his role within the canon, and claims to have precognitive abilities stemming from the author "writing the end first like the fucking twat he is". Gordon has said numerous times that this story "does not fucking end well", but refuses to elaborate on this statement.
|Position:||Specialist||Recovered from:||Kaufmann, C. (2002) Unpeople. Manhattan, New York: HarperCollins.|
|Barker is an adaptive narrative entity who shifts in abilities, form and identity to suit the narrative she is currently placed in. Barker is the only character to appear in all 12 short stories within Unpeople. She also appears in the blurb and special thanks, and narrates the introduction and author biography. Regardless of physical form, presentation, and personality, Barker will always identify as female. In most of their identities, Barker has been diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorder or some equivalent.
Following extraction, Barker has assumed the form of a battle-hardened Jack of All Trades type, formerly the head of MTF-κ-19. The narrative requirement for this form is unknown. A recent paper, Pataphysical Anomaly Recursion both preceding and following Procedure Kuzco-Bueller, puts forth the hypothesis that Barker's anomalous ability to adapt to a narrative is simply a by-product of adapting to fit into this canon's metanarrative. No way to test this hypothesis has yet been put forth.
|Name:||The Overvoid Lurk||ID:||MTF-ι-0-xx||Callsign:||operation-overmeta|
|Position:||Right in front of you||Recovered from:||Morrison, G. (2012) Intergalactic. Berkeley, California: Image Comics.|
|Overvoid is a narrative narrative entity appearing both as and within a text. Overvoid initially appeared as a copy of Intergalactic #8 within Intergalactic#8, discovered by the character Ignoble Steed. At the end of the issue, it was revealed that Overvoid was also the narrator of Wanderlust, having gained sentience through its own presence within the text. Overvoid's presence can be detected within a work when descriptors, text boxes and occasionally background text begin referring to themselves in the first person or attempting to converse with the reader. Possible relation to SCP-426 is being researched.
Upon extraction, I became this webpage, hosted as a single HTML document both within our current layer/plane and the Alpha layer1. I'm an invaluable resource, they say, though they're rather annoyed I only allow them glimpses at me in moments of need. I'm a narrative device as much as the rest of them, and they really need to respect my structure - if they had a handy roadmap at all times, where on earth would the conflict be?
I'm sorry, I'm babbling. We really should get along to our final member…
|Name:||Reginald Impel||ID:||MTF-ι-0-null||Callsign:||Dude in the Corner|
|Reggie presented himself to the Pataphysics department on 26 Oct. 2015, claiming to be a self-insert character for Horror Writer Entity swn001-1-RMPL ("Rimple"). Reggie is an extremely talented hacker and former head of the Foundation's IT department who hacked the Pataphysics database and figured out the implications of our research. Reggie claims to have no real backstory or personality of his own, which our research confirms.
As attempts to remove Reggie from the narrative have proven unsuccessful, Reggie has been been assigned to MTF-ι-0, and is to accompany them at all times to allow for plot progression. Reggie is to be regularly acknowledged for the purposes of nominal inclusion within the story. Reggie is classified as an irritating narrative entity.
Director Panagiotopolous stood at the head of the table, lost for words.
"What on earth have I got myself into with you two?"
Evidently not quite lost, then. Gordon and Jasmine sat opposite her, both frowning.
"Here, it wasn't my fucking idea to-" Gordon was interrupted by Reggie, screaming through his gag. "Right, Reggie's here too. Whatever. Point is, it wasn't my idea to drag me up here. Fred made me think I'd be escaping the wanky meta bullshit by coming here."
"That's on us, yes." Penelope said, her tone unapologetic.
"It's fucking on them," Gordon growled, jabbing a finger toward the ceiling. "The idiot who wrote us. You're no more real than we are."
Jasmine pinched the bridge of her nose, sighing dramatically. "This is a terrible way to start the story," she said, to nobody in particular. "You realise this is the start of the story, right?"
Gordon hesitated for a second, then groaned as he sensed it himself. "Why do you think he's-" He stopped as it clicked. "Because he doesn't know where to go with us! He's just writing, seeing where it takes him."
"So, wait, this isn't going in the final story, then? Is this even real? For us, I mean? What happens if he gets bored and just
"So, ok, we're fighting a big tree?" Sally asked quizzically, looking up from the notepad she was doodling in.
Penelope tapped the whiteboard again, gesturing to her scribbled diagrams. "A narrative tree. A choose-your-own adventure with branching paths. We need you to traverse it. As you're the most familiar with impermanent reality as a writing gimmick, you'll be leading the task force for this mission."
Sally glanced over to Gordon, picking his teeth in the corner. "Surely Gordon's more qualified? Some of his fans have got to have experimented with Twine or some shit back in the day."
"They did, yes. It was a rather popular trend for a few weeks. But he tended to… bulldoze his way through them, as he is wont to with most things. No branching paths, no reader choice. Hardly stories at all, really. That was after the time loop trend, though, so he was… rather unhinged at the time." There was a rare look of pity on the director's face, and for the first time Sally considered the full implications of having to remember your past iterations.
It was hard to feel bad for the asshole kicking Reggie in the shins, though.
"I guess that's that, then. Adventure, here we
Gordon raised his head, alarmed.
"We're in a masturbatory draft loop!" he barked. "Someone say something interesting, grab the readers' attentions."
Sandra2 scratched her nose, curious. "What isn't?"
"This drafty thing he's trying. He's being too clever and meta, not paying enough attention to the story. In a couple hundred words
we haven't done anything remotely fucking interesting."
"Come on, that's bullshit, we've-"
At the head of the table, Penelope coughed, and all heads turned. It was a rather commanding cough.
"Gordon is absolutely right. We've already lost…" She looked down at her phone, tapping the screen a couple times. "…two readers, if our metrics are correct. We'll earn a downvote for heavyhanded exposition with this very conversational track, but I believe it will be worth it. I have a plan."
Gordon shrugged, his enormous jacket audibly shifting.
"Downvotes don't mean fuckall. I've done the Reddit thing. They only delete if the author puts some horrible shit in." He scowled. "I still remember that shit, though. It fucks you up. The kind of shit the author isn't even comfortable having me mention right now."
"This isn't Reddit, we don't think. We don't even know whether upper truth has a Reddit. Our research shows that when data points drop below a certain merit threshold, they disappear entirely, from all planes."
Penelope's assistant3, Mary, piped up from behind her. "Not all, Dr. Panagiotopolous."
"Right, of course." Penelope rubbed her cheekbone, prominent under her thin skin. "There are occasional instances where they remain on just a single plane, utterly fruitless. That plane is always the original budding plane, the one belonging to their writer entity." She frowned at4 Mary, a silent warning not to interrupt her again. "That can't be relied upon, though. It's altogether too rare, and not at all in line with our mission."
The team nodded along like they understood. Gordon actually sort of did get it5. Gordon eventually broke the silence.
"You said you had a plan. Spill."
"There's a few data points - very very few, hard to identify - which seem to be immune to 'deletion', as Gordon put it."
"The fuck is wrong with the word deletion? That's a perfectly normal word"
"Of course, yes. I didn't mean anything by it. The point is, no matter how far these data points fall in merit, they seem to be immune to the rules that govern all the others."
Gordon huffed, but didn't retort.
Penelope continued, getting into her stride. "These immune data points… We initially thought they might be somehow central to baseline truth - consensus canon - and therefore protected against demerit deletion. But too many of them are totally random, not at all important. For the most part, only two or three planes intersect at them, despite exceedingly high referential factors. We've detected a few inaccessible ones that aren't even within the narrative bulk. A couple of them are ancient documents, terminal logs, one data point was just the fact a researcher died. But for the most part…they're personnel files. I admit, we were utterly stumped at that. One hypothesis was that there was an outside force protecting those of us it could, bestowing us with permanence we weren't guaranteed." Penelope smiled subtly, the ghost of a dimple appearing on her cheek. "I liked that one. Gave me some comfort. But that didn't fit with the other protected data points. So what the hell was it? Took years for someone to piece it together. I think it was Dr. Huever, in the end. They were author pages."
"If we can work together we might, maybe, be able to anchor ourselves to an author page, conceptually. Protect ourselves as a potential piece of headcanon by sheer virtue of being undeletable. It's not the best plan, but at this rate we're probably hemorrhaging points. It might be the only way to save ourselves."
Aubrey was nodding for real this time. "I'm in. What do we need to do?"
"Well, that's easy. We pick a writer entity with a cluster of planes, but no protected ones. Then we break into their data points. Violently insert ourselves." She turned to Reggie, still crying in the corner. "What did you say your writer entity was called again?
Shenanigan 3: SCP-2779 - COMING SOON
Climactic Finale Super Spectacular - COMING A LITTLE LESS SOON BUT LIKE STILL FAIRLY SOON