Some comfort may be found in the shadow of the Machine Goddess, our Broken Salvation
Person of Interest File #2273/01
Legal Name: Alexei Belitrov
Aliases used: "Father Anvil"
Associated Groups of Interest: The Eastern Clockwork Orthodox Church1
Reason for monitoring: PoI is a former SCP object. PoI may possess sensitive information regarding SCP Foundation operations and assets.
Course of Action: Monitor communications through standard channels, detain if information leak is detected.
UPDATED 2063/11/01: Monitor known and suspected points of contact, carry out information control measures if information leak is detected.
Status: Currently believed to be living in Eastern Clockwork Orthodoxy monastery in Volgograd Oblast, Russia.
UPDATED 2063/11/01: PoI is deceased, interred in the graveyard of the Volgograd Eastern Clockwork Orthodoxy monastery.
Background Information: PoI was contained as SCP-2273 by Foundation from 1989 until 2018. Upon Hypothetical Lifted Veil Scenario 2217 having been realized, SCP-2273 was released alongside all other applicable Type C Sapient Anomalies, with provisional PoI status. PoI was given passage to Volgograd, Russian Federation through the Manna Charitable Foundation (MCF)'s Anomaly Reintegration Project. PoI sought employment with Russian Federation government, but was denied due to anomalous status. PoI participated in televised, radio, and online interviews, but was unable to find permanent employment.
In April of 2020, PoI 2273/01 contacted the MCF's Volgograd Office for Anomaly Reintegration (OAR) seeking discreet relocation; MCF internal documents indicate that several displaced anomalous entities had been taken in by various religious entities, including the Eastern Clockwork Orthodox Church. Three weeks following his contacting the MCF, Foundation assets became unable to track PoI 2273/01.
In April of 2021, PoI 2273/01 contacted SCP-██████ (formerly Dr. T. Friedrich, Site-17 humanoid anomaly psychologist) through written correspondence.2 PoI did not disclose his location, and the listed address was a known MCF mail-handling center. Correspondence was handwritten. SCP-██████ reciprocated PoI 2273/01's correspondence, quickly resulting in the regular exchange of correspondence between the two anomalies.
Following SCP-██████'s expiration from lymphoma-related complications on 13 January 2034, all correspondence addressed to it was returned to senders, including PoI 2273/01's. On 22 February 2034, a phone call from the MCF Volgograd OAR was received by the Site-17 Office for Public Affairs. The caller identified themselves as a former SCP object but did not disclose further information, instead repeatedly inquiring to the state of SCP-██████ and, when informed that SCP-██████ was deceased, requested contact information for next-of-kin. As such information is considered sensitive, this request was denied. It is believed at this time that the person responsible for this interaction was PoI 2273/01. No further information regarding PoI 2273/01's location or status was obtained until the MCF Office for Public Affairs released a public statement declaring that PoI 2273/01 had expired of natural causes one decade prior.3 This public statement also published several previously unavailable documents regarding PoI 2273/01.
Several selected transcribed pieces of correspondence and other related documents are attached to this document. Personality profile of PoI 2273/01 as indicated by these and similar, unattached documents indicate that PoI 2273/01 was a minimal informational security risk to the Foundation.
Selected pieces of correspondence addressed to SCP-██████:
Correspondence addressed to SCP-██████ dated 31 March 2021:
Dear Doctor █████████,
I am sorry that it's taken me this long to contact you. I've been busy. As far as I can tell, you're still facing your own issues. I wish that this weren't the case. If you're allowed to speak about it, I'd like to know whether your case handlers are any closer to resolving the issue. If it's sensitive information, I understand.
Doctor, I never had the opportunity to thank you for everything you did for me. You didn't take credit for it, but I know you had a hand in my downgrade to Type C status, that you are at least partially responsible for introducing me to Victoria. And I can never repay you for it. The nightmares still haven't stopped, but, because of techniques you taught me, I can handle it. There is no way I can repay you for that.
The last three years have been hard. I'm not meant for this world, Doctor. This is a world of flashing lights and happy people and air and food and capitalism and things I'd never imagined. Your world is stranger than the books and music and films I was allotted ever allowed me to conceive of. People in Russia walking on the surface, making phone calls to friends in the United States while military personnel from both countries cooperate to secure peace in places like Libya and Syria. It's beautiful, Doctor █████████. And it's not meant for me.
I think of the people I knew in containment often. Is it strange that I miss being in a cell? I miss Penny and his damnable card tricks. I miss playing table-tennis against the — what did Security call it? The "Space Crab?" It was fun to play against it, anyway.
And I miss Victoria. I never told you this, Doctor, but the reason I was so quick to try to be friends with her is because I wanted to make up for what I did in the Toronto bunkers, and elsewhere. I still feel responsible for what happened to her. She was the only one who didn't show disgust the first time she met me. And she was my best friend in this world. Is it strange that an old man's best friend was a small, disabled girl?
On the outside, things are strange. I was able to eke out a living through public appearances for a while, but one can only do so many interviews, repeating the same information, before it becomes exhausting and before there is a loss of public interest. People on the street recognize me and either avoid me like the monster I am or treat me like a celebrity or hero that I am not. It's aggravating to know that eyes are always watching you the way they are out here. This may sound cold-hearted, but I almost miss seeing Russia as a burned and radioactive wasteland. I had to escape from the spotlight, and I hope you understand that.
Doctor █████████, I can never give you back what you gave to me, and I hope this letter finds you in good health and strong spirits. Please, if your handlers will allow it, write back to me. I want to know how everyone still at Site-17 is doing. I understand if there must be some omissions, but unless I am mistaken, they'll allow you to see this letter, so please get back in touch. I do not want us to be strangers.
Your patient and your friend,
Notes: Letter was translated from German. This was the first piece of correspondence delivered to SCP-██████ sent from PoI 2273/01. It is believed that the entities listed by PoI 2273/01 are, in order, SCP-191-N, SCP-507, and SCP-163-EX. At time of reception, there was no reason to believe that PoI 2273/01 had any information regarding any of these anomalies that had not already been declassified following Lifted Veil Scenario 2217. Low-priority monitoring remained in effect at this time.
Correspondence addressed to SCP-██████ dated 4 December 2022:
Dear Dr. █████████,
It's strange, Doctor. For the first thirty years of my life, I was told that atheism was absolute truth, that religion is propaganda used by capitalists and monarchs to keep the many in chains. In containment, I simply learned to live day-to-day, hoping that I might be allowed something to pass the time. But here? The people who are helping me? They dedicate themselves to their God, and their lives are without worry or pain. They treat me as one of their own and ask nothing of me. They are more understanding of my condition than anyone employed by your Foundation or anyone who tried to help me on the outside.
These people are not in chains, Doctor. They may be the only free people I have ever known.
I do not have a television of my own, but on a trip to a village a few kilometers from the monastery, I saw 163 on television. It was being publicly presented during some sort of conference by an American scientist. I'm glad to see that it's healthy; perhaps more public knowledge of its existence will lead to some resolution of its homesickness? I could never tell when it was happy, but I like to think it enjoyed our games.
On a similar note, I saw that Penny's published an autobiography. One of the clergymen here ordered me a copy. It should be here in a few days. I wonder what he has to say. From what little he was allowed to tell me, his experience with the Foundation had been unique. But I suppose this is true for all of us who have lived on the inside of containment cells. Maybe there's nothing to be learned there at all.
It feels strange to say this, Doctor, but for the first time in my life, I've started praying. I pray for people I've never met, and for people I've lost. I pray for Victoria and Penny and all of you crows. I pray for your health, Doctor, and hope that someday, you'll be able to walk as a free man. Please, write back when you can.
PS: I've finally quit avoiding the issue and have written a letter to Penny. I'll deliver it when I deliver this, and will let you know if he writes back. Thank you so much for giving me his address!
Notes: Letter was translated from German. Signature line was written with a calligraphy pen, the first apparent time such a tool had been used by PoI 2273/01. Analysis of ink and paper indicated that it was not factory-produced, that the paper had been milled using a combination of waste plant fibers and cotton. The ink had been locally manufactured with charcoal and ethanol with results chemically similar to India ink. Later cross-referencing found that both recipes were commonly used by Clockwork Orthodoxy monasteries and communes.
Correspondence addressed to SCP-██████ dated 30 April 2027:
Dear Dr. █████████,
I heard about what's happened. The people who relocated me, they don't want me to return to Site-17. Ever since I've been released, people have assumed that I faced abuse — or even my current condition — because of the Foundation, and these Manna people are no different. I'll call you when I can, if you could give me a good number to reach you at. I'm so, so sorry to hear about this. Please, do what you can to take care of yourself. Follow your physician's orders. Know that my prayers are with you. Penny's, as well.
Does this have anything to do with your other condition? I know the Foundation should cover your medical costs, regardless of whether it is, but perhaps your case handlers could help alleviate your pain if they could work harder to eliminate whatever it is that's put you in a cell. I don't know. I pray for you every night. I don't have materials to make a card here, and my place here has become more permanent, so I can't simply buy one, but I'll do whatever I can to help you. Please let me know how I can help.
Remember that Christ is with you, comrade.
Notes: Letter was translated from German. This letter was received shortly after SCP-██████ was diagnosed with Stage III lymphoma. This was not considered an information breach, though SCP-██████ did express distress that this information proliferated through social media and other methods as rapidly as it had. As a result of the content of this letter, it is believed that, at some point following his last letter and before the signing of this one, PoI 2273/01 had joined the Volgograd Eastern Clockwork Orthodox monastery as a full member.
Correspondence addressed to SCP-██████ dated 7 January 2034:
Myself and my brothers and sisters here all pray for a safe surgery and rapid recovery. Please, when you are able, contact me. It has been a cold winter, and good news will help to welcome the coming spring.
I've lost too many friends, Thomas. I have known far too much tragedy in this life. I've seen worlds die, I've seen friends die, I've made men I thought my enemy die. I cannot stand to watch another leave this world so soon, not after hearing about what happened to Penny, not after Victoria. God is with you, I know you believe this too.
You may be unmarried, Doctor █████████, but you are not unloved. You have to be strong for me. You have to be strong for yourself. If you're ever worried that you cannot find the strength to continue, think of the garden you'll plant this spring. I'd like to share gardening photos with you again. Not many of my brothers and sisters here appreciate the simple beauty of a flower bed or the effort that goes into growing a patch of vegetables. It's a beauty I'd like to continue to share.
Trust in the power of our Lord, Thomas, and trust in the power of modern medicine. God is smiling on you. Please, be strong.
With Love and Prayers,
Notes: Letter was translated from German. On the signed date, SCP-██████ entered radiation therapy to treat its lymphoma, which had entered Stage IV and become metastasized. However, several cancerous tissues had evaded detection and SCP-██████'s condition deteriorated rapidly, resulting in its expiration on 11 February 2034. The letter arrived on 15 February 2034, and, following analysis for informational breaches, was returned to the sender address at the MCF Volgograd office. This was the last confirmed contact by PoI 2273/01 with Foundation personnel/tracked anomalies prior to his death.
Selected Excerpts from journals secured following public announcement of PoI 2273/01's departure:
Excerpt from a journal entry dated 25 December 2034:
I'm only writing to gather my thoughts. I don't believe I'll be keeping this journal regularly.
Today is the day that our monastery celebrates the birth of our Lord. However, I feel no desire to celebrate. All of my friends in this world are dead. My brothers and sisters are partaking in some celebration outside my dormitory; all of the required ceremonies are complete, and neither they nor whatever is happening out there now will lighten my mood.
Father Cogwheel and Mother Axle both spoke to me today, expressing concern. This is the first Christmas I have spent alone in this world, so I do not expect them to understand. Though they are both Standardized, they do not know what it's like to sit in a containment cell, or what small comfort might be gleaned from a piece of familiar music. They are machines, stuck in mechanical ways. They talk of confession and forgiveness, but they do not know what it's like to confess to war crimes, to murdering innocent children, while a man behind a glass partition nods and tells you that you can be forgiven. They do not know the joy one might feel when teaching a small child chess or watching her eyes light up as you tell her stories. And they do not know the darkness that can enter a soul when one sees those people die.
I know there is comfort in the words of God, in the Schema and the words of Jesus Christ. But this comfort evades me now. I do not know if I will ever find comfort again. But I have survived greater trauma, so I will try.
Aut viam inveniam aut faciam.
Notes: This and all further journal entries were translated from Russian. Though they were not released until 10 years following PoI 2273/01's death, they were valuable in confirming that PoI 2273/01 had direct connections to the Eastern Clockwork Orthodox Church. However, these journals were written during a 29-year gap in surveillance of the subject; full information on the subject's activities during this time will likely never come to light.
Excerpt from a journal entry dated 16 July 2039:
"Finding strength in Our Mechanized Salvation's Promise to Return?"
"Why Standardization must be sought after?"
"The beauty of industrialization"
"Our Mechanized Salvation's Grand Design?"
- Simplicity found in nature
- Self-constructing systems
- Strength of naturally-occurring systems
- Adaptability of Humankind/beauty of human ingenuity
Notes: Page had been torn from the journal but later replaced. Page showed wrinkle marks. Adjacent pages contained further notes on an apparent sermon PoI 2273/01 had been assigned to write by high-ranking individuals within the monastery. This is possibly indicative of promotion of PoI 2273/01 within the monastery's religious hierarchy. No evidence of the actual content of the sermon or whether it was ever delivered has been discovered.
Excerpt from a journal entry dated 21 September 2053:
I have lived a long life. It has been a painful life. My earliest memories are of mushroom clouds and radioactive rain and cold concrete bunkers. I spent one-third of my 95 years fighting a war I should never have believed in, and another one-third of my life within a cell, never seeing sunlight and being tossed children's novels to keep me compliant. It has only been in the last third of my life so far, what I strongly believe to be the final part of my life, that I have seen our Goddess's light and mercy.
I know that I am a sinner, and that prayer or a modest life as the one I have lived will not be enough to earn our Goddess's forgiveness. But this does not concern me. I have sinned and will pay for my sins in kind. She has cursed me, such that I may not be Standardized, but she has also blessed me, that I may see the wicked in Humanity and may be equipped to speak out against it. I am not concerned that I will pay for my sins but rather, that I have not fully fulfilled my Purpose in Her Grand Design.
We are, each of us, cogs and gears and springs and axles and all other manner of mechanisms in Her Grand Mechanism. She has been Rebuilt, and She has departed our world with a promise of a Return. But She was never truly Broken, as we are, each of us, a part of Her and She a part of us. Those who do not follow our faith, in the footsteps of Our Mechanized Salvation and of Her Son Jesus Christ, are not doomed to eternity as nourishment for the Flesh because they are heretics, but because they seek to make violence in the world, seek to disassemble the beauty of Her Grand Design. Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Christian, Jew, and all others are equals in the Eyes of Our Mechanized Salvation, and it is not those who do not know the Words, but rather those who would hurt Her Children who are frowned upon. And all of Humanity are Her Children.
I do not believe that my time in this world is much longer. Brothers and Sisters, when my time of Judgment comes, do not mourn me. I would rather you remember these words: the Goddess is most pleased with those who seek kind, non-violent resolution to their problems, because a machine whose gears grind against each other is a machine that cannot work. Seek truth, but also compassion. The Words are only words. Seek out the Truth within them.
God bless you all.
Notes: The preceding is the final known journal entry authored by PoI 2273/01. It is believed that PoI 2273/01 had prepared this statement in lieu of a last will and testament, or in addition to one. MCF and Eastern Clockwork Orthodoxy documents indicate that PoI 2273/01 was found deceased from apparent old age within his dormitory on the morning 13 October 2053, less than a month following authoring the excerpt. This and other documentation confirm that PoI 2273/01 had achieved some rank within the monastery's religious hierarchy, though a precise date for the adoption of the moniker "Father Anvil" is unknown.
At this time, it is believed that PoI 2273/01's remains are interred within the graveyard at the Eastern Clockwork Orthodoxy monastery where he spent the last years of his life. There is no substantial evidence of informational leaks as a result of PoI 2273/01. I am recommending this file for closure.
— Agent Lakshmi Turnbow, Foundation Records and Informational Security Administration