rating: +93+x

Mobile offshore base "Topside"

Item #: SCP-4140

Object Class: Euclid1

Special Containment Procedures: An exclusion zone around the underwater entrance to the cave containing SCP-4140 is to be maintained, using the cover story that highly noise-sensitive hydroacoustic research is being performed nearby. All containment activities within this zone should be directed from aboard the Foundation-owned DSV2 Katlan, which has been designated mobile offshore base (MOB) "Topside". Members of MTF Omicron-5 "Skippers with Flippers"3 must be present to guide the transport of personnel into and out of the cave complex. Containment efforts inside the caves are to focus on preventing the further spread of SCP-4140-2 throughout the complex. Due to its destructive nature, personnel should avoid all contact with existing volumes of SCP-4140-2.

Description: SCP-4140 is a topologically disconnected volume of space located in the central cave chamber of a partially flooded cave complex5. No matter is capable of passing through the boundary to this volume of space. All forms of energy (kinetic, electromagnetic, etc.) are completely absorbed by the boundary upon contact and never re-emitted. Due to its nature, no information about the interior of SCP-4140 can be gleaned. It appears to the human eye as a nonreflective, oblate hemispheroid with a semi-major axis of approximately 10 meters and a semi-minor axis of approximately 6 meters. It is immovable and extends 1.4 meters below the surrounding cave floor.

Most of the surface area of the central cavern's walls is covered in living biological material, belonging to a single unidentified human male of Eastern European descent. Drilling has revealed that this substance is layered: The outer layer of fat, muscle tissue and blood vessels covers an underlying layer of sinew and cartilage which grows spontaneously from the rock walls. Samples of the walls themselves contain bone marrow and spinal fluid. In certain places, the surface of the outer layer has grown patches of various body parts and organs, such as skin, eyes and teeth. While this material is biologically alive and responds to basic stimuli, it is not believed to be sentient. The entirety of this material is designated SCP-4140-1.


A cave chamber where part of the wall has been displaced by SCP-4140-2.

If at any time there are no string or woodwind instruments being played in the central cavern, volumes of space similar in appearance to SCP-4140 will begin to manifest within the cave system6. These volumes are collectively designated SCP-4140-2. While similar in appearance, they exhibit several deviations from the characteristics of SCP-4140: Their boundaries are diffuse, and all forms of matter and energy can pass into them without resistance. All such matter and/or energy is to be considered irretrievably lost. Nothing has ever exited or been emitted from SCP-4140-2. Objects partially inserted into a volume of SCP-4140-2 and then removed behave as if the inserted portion has ceased to exist. The same is true of any matter present in the volume immediately prior to the manifestation of SCP-4140-2. It is theorised that SCP-4140-2 may constitute a form of localised reality failure.

The total volume covered by SCP-4140-2 will grow continuously as long as the Auseuil protocol is not resumed. The rate of growth of SCP-4140-2 increases proportionally to the square of the time elapsed since the cessation of the musical peformance; there is no known upper limit to this increase. The volume of space converted to SCP-4140-2 has never been observed to decrease. However, SCP-4140-2 has never spread into the central cave. When any number of musicians resume the Auseuil protocol, the rate of growth of SCP-4140-2 will begin to decrease until it reaches zero. The rate of this decrease is directly proportional to the amount of performing musicians.

Through accidents it has become clear that the insertion of living biological matter into volumes of SCP-4140-2 will temporarily halt its proliferation. This effect lasts longer the more matter is lost, and is further amplified if the organic tissue belongs to a sapient lifeform. Nevertheless, this method of containment is extremely inefficient and may only be considered in emergencies.

As of █/█/2018, an approximate 31% of the volume of the entire cave complex is occupied by SCP-4140-2. At the time of discovery, this was only 23%. It is suspected, but unconfirmed, that SCP-4140-2 has also expanded considerably into the surrounding rock walls. Since the successful implementation of the Auseuil protocol on █/█/2018, this percentage has remained unchanged. The affected portions of the cave complex have been blocked off and stabilised to avoid loss of Foundation assets and to ensure structural integrity of the caves.

Personnel that are assigned to the Auseuil protocol for extended periods (in the order of several weeks) will start to display symptoms of declining mental health and anomalous physical alteration. These effects are believed to be caused by prolonged proximity to SCP-4140 and/or SCP-4140-1. Despite extensive research, the exact cause remains unknown. A list of symptoms and additional findings are available in the addendum "Effects of SCP-4140 on containment personnel".

Discovery: SCP-4140 came to Foundation attention after a team of recreational divers were reported missing. The support vessel which had transported them radioed for help when the divers failed to return from the cave complex they recently discovered. It was later determined that they had become affected by SCP-4140-induced mania. Due to the description of SCP-4140-2 provided by the divers, the broadcast was intercepted by the Foundation and MTF Omicron-5 was mobilised for initial exploration.

Forged investigation reports have since been disseminated to the local authorities, stating that the missing divers lost their bearings in a silt-out7 and subsequently drowned, owing to a lack of cave diving experience. The crew of the support vessel has been administered class B amnestics.

Addendum: Effects of SCP-4140 on containment personnel: Affected personnel undergo a progression of symptoms, which can be roughly divided into three stages:

First stage:

  • Onset of irrational and obsessive behaviour, accompanied by an overall drop in compliance with Foundation personnel
  • Reluctance to cease performance as part of the Auseuil protocol, to the point of ignoring basic needs
  • Behaving in an absent-minded and distracted manner when not inside the central cave
  • Reacting aggressively when removed from the central cave or prevented from entering it

Second stage:

  • Claiming that the music performed as part of the Auseuil protocol sounds "unnatural" or otherwise distorted, as well as insisting that the music can be heard throughout the entire cave complex
  • Vivid hallucinations involving SCP-4140
  • Personification of SCP-4140-1
  • Deification of SCP-4140

Third stage:

  • Displaying controlled alteration of their physique, including but not limited to: contortion of the skin, musculature and skeletal structure as well as rearrangement of internal organs
  • Remaining animate and biologically alive despite a lack of nutrients, sleep deprivation and the severity of the morphological alterations mentioned above
  • Open hostility towards anyone who disrupts the Auseuil protocol

In approximately 90% of all cases where the affected person is removed from the cave complex while in the first stage, these effects have been observed to fade over time. In the few cases where they do not fade, the use of amnestics is authorized. All personnel in the second stage are to be redesignated as E-class personnel and should be considered permanently unfit for containment duties. All personnel that have reached the third stage must be terminated via brain trauma, then cremated.

Note that most affected personnel will not reach the third stage. This is because they remain biologically non-anomalous in the first two stages and will generally expire due to dehydration, starvation or sleep deprivation if their musical performance is not interrupted. Affected personnel that expire in this fashion have been observed to keep playing, although their bodies will still decompose. Personnel that do reach the third stage are able to continue performing indefinitely without expiring.

Addendum: Recovered documents: The following journal was recovered from an obstructed section of the central cave, presumably damaged during seismic activity. This side-chamber contained a set of scrolls in the Adytite8 language, as well as a withered portion of SCP-4140-1.

Personal writings of Karcist9 Otrava

Ever since Ion's revolt liberated us from the mind- and body-breaking slavery of the Daeva, I have wanted to do the same for others. Now, finally, I have been sent from Adytum to the edges of our empire to aid in freeing settlements from the Daeva. I proceed forward with three advisors and an ample supply of my Halkost10. In this journal I shall keep a record of what I come across.

[Irrelevant entries redacted for brevity]

What I previously thought to be a mere seaside village has left me quite puzzled. Not only is it ferociously protected by an unusually large force of Daevite soldiers, I have also spied at least half a dozen carts this fortnight alone, which provide the settlement with a steady supply of slaves. Does it perhaps hide some ore mine, where slaves are made to work until they die? Whatever the case may be, I will not stand for it. Unbeknownst to the rest, one of the guards has already been made part of my Halkost. I shall strike from within and without at the same time.

After dispatching all guards in the otherwise abandoned village, I found that the slaves were indeed being brought below ground, into a vast cavernous maze. However, it quickly became clear that these were no mines; Instead, we found a blasphemous subterranean temple where the slaves are forced to be part of an elaborate sacrificial ritual! On my foray into the caves, I observed Daevite priestesses as they cast slaves into an intangible void unlike anything I have ever seen. The slaves disappeared, never to re-emerge, and yet I am now convinced they were the fortunate ones. When I arrived at the heart of the caves, I found that it contained a far larger, immovable nothingness, surrounded on all sides by malnourished slaves who were made to play the flute without pause. When one of the flutists inevitably collapsed from sheer exhaustion, they were immediately dragged away and replaced by another unfortunate soul. I could not allow this travesty to continue, and so after a brief struggle, I imprisoned the Daevite priestesses in the holding pens. Most of the newly liberated slaves have fled, while some of them have declared loyalty to me. I will do my best to teach them our ways and beliefs.

I am loathe to admit it, but it appears that the ritual I interrupted was not as senseless as I thought. This morning, I noticed that the intangible blackness outside the main cave had started to spread, almost cutting off our way out of here! One of my advisors fell when the darkness lurched towards her, and the next moment she was gone. This amused the Daevite priestesses to no end, but it also seemed to halt the spread of that emptiness, if only for a while. The mad laughter of the priestesses came to a halt when I started casting them one by one into that all-devouring nothingness. Impulsive though it may have been, it has bought me time to come up with a solution.

I stare at this thing, still stained by Daevite symbols written in the blood of slaves, and I see only a gnawing, hungering void, yearning to truly exist. I harbour genuine fear at the fact that it may be more than just another minor god. I talked to one of the more lucid slaves we freed, and they claim that the only necessary part of the ritual is the music. If we can surround this thing, at all times, with the cacophonous piping of the Daeva, it should remain blinded and slumbering. I am glad that I need not feed it more lives, but am I truly forced to return these flutists to slavery? Their duties leave them delirious, malnourished and exhausted; Surely they will not survive this for much longer, especially if we must have them playing at all times. Perhaps my aptitude for Lihakut'ak11 presents me with another solution.

The thing awakened again, sooner than I had anticipated, while I was still engrossed in my meditation. It caught me off guard, and spilled a terrible vision directly into my mind's eye. As I was granted a glimpse beyond its immovable, black veil, I tried to look away, but found that I could not: The more I struggled, the more opaque the boundary became. At first, it looked like a portal to the vast expanses of the cosmos, populated only by the light of distant stars. As I looked closer, however, the stars opened up into alert, predatory eyes and the vast, undulating darkness surrounding them gnashed wildly with countless misshapen mouths, each lined with razor-sharp teeth. I realised immediately that I was indeed mistaken: This thing, driven by instinct as it may be, was no mindless lesser god. No, in that instant, I saw it for what it truly was: one of the six archons!

How can our prophet Ion ever hope to commune with such a vast, primordial chaos? Can there truly be any hope of overthrowing the twisted cosmic order?

Just as I thought I had reached the depth of despair, the innumerable eyes of the thing focused on me and it let out an incomprehensible snarl: As I could see it, it too could see me. Its gaze forcibly plunged me deeper into the vision, and before my eyes unfolded a representation of the archon's terrifying machinations. At the centre of the void, there laid an enormous, half-formed amalgamation of flesh and bone, a serpentlike carcass devoid of all life. As I perceived time to speed up, I saw the nothingness in the cave spreading ever faster, and as it consumed the flesh of our world, the surrogate body grew closer and closer to completion. In the end, the body sprung to life as it became possessed by the very life-force of our uncaring progenitor, and she strode forth from the cosmic void, freed from her inescapable prison!

When I finally came to my senses, my advisors had already taken up the Daevite flutes to lull the thing back to its slumber. I realise now more than ever that this is hardly a permanent solution. I absolutely must find a way to seal this thing away, from now until the end of time.

It is improper for a Karcist to do this, but I have little choice: I have only my own flesh at my disposal. With my knowledge of Lihakut'ak, it should be possible to contain the archon without further sacrifices. I will make a Kiraak12 of myself, to ensure there will always be someone keeping this thing at bay. Despite all urgings, my remaining advisors refuse to let me remain here alone. Several of the released slaves wish to remain as well, for they recognise better than anyone the importance of this task. So be it. Tomorrow, I shall put my Halkost to work on sealing all entrances that I know of. Let it be known: From that moment on, those who stay in this cave shall share in my carnal immortality as we take up our eternal vigil.

The words recorded here will be my last coherent memories. Perhaps my slavemasters were not too far off from the truth when they bestowed me with a name that means "fool", considering what I am about to attempt. I reject the Daeva's sacrifice of the many for the few, just as I reject the inherent cruelty of life. The true nature of the demiurge Yaldabaoth lives within us all; Defiance of this nature has always been the only road to kindness. I shall sacrifice myself for the many. If I must live forever in the dark so that all others may see the glorious light of Ikunaan13, so be it.

Of note is the fact that the dead portion of SCP-4140-1 in the collapsed chamber appeared to have been growing fully developed humans on its surface, rather than individual organs. This function was likely interrupted by the cave-in, causing the severed portion of SCP-4140-1 to atrophy.

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