Item #: SCP-589
Object Class: Keter
Special Containment Procedures: SCP-589 must be contained within a sealed, reinforced container that is welded shut. Under no circumstances is SCP-589 to be removed from its container, physically contacted, or even seen. SCP-589 and its container must sit on a scale so that it may be continually weighed to confirm SCP-589's presence.
SCP-589's containment cell may only be accessed by level 4 personnel, and must be guarded by at least two level 4 security personnel with twenty four hour surveillance. Under no circumstances is SCP-589 allowed to leave its containment cell. Any personnel attempting unauthorized entry or removal of SCP-589 will be terminated.
Should containment be breached, then the entire sector SCP-589 is held in must be immediately purged via demolition charges or incendiary devices. Any personnel assigned to the sector that manage to escape must be questioned and then immediately detained for psychological screening.
In the event that SCP-589 must be handled without the protection of the container, the only personnel authorized to handle SCP-589 must be cleared by Foundation psychologists and must have a Psionic Resistance Index of 30 or higher. Once their task is complete, all personnel that have handled SCP-589 must submit to a mandatory psychological screening.
Description: SCP-589 is a stuffed animal that is able to change its appearance based on the subjective desires of the first person to come in contact with it. SCP-589 has the ability to create a calming, soothing sensation within anybody who sees or comes into physical contact with it. This ability appears to be memetic, as it is able to spread via copies of itself as well as pictures depicting its likeness. However, the effectiveness of these copies is directly proportional to the quality of the product. The calming effect SCP-589 imparts is not unlike the use of narcotics, as it stimulates the areas of the brain that are responsible for feelings of relief and euphoria, and encourages the production of chemicals and hormones that reduce stress. However, this effect quickly becomes addictive, with infected individuals becoming completely dependent on SCP-589 after extended exposure. Once addicted, an individual's interaction with SCP-589 or any of its copies borders on complete obsession, and they are compelled to create more copies of SCP-589 and attempt to spread them.
However, what makes SCP-589 dangerous are its aftereffects. After a certain period of time, SCP-589 will immediately vanish. SCP-589, any of its physical copies, and all versions of it in printed and electronic media will completely disappear. This sudden and massive disappearance of SCP-589 results in catastrophic consequences for those infected by SCP-589. Without SCP-589 to keep them passive and calm, infected individuals will immediately suffer a variety of severe withdrawal symptoms including but not limited to: manic depression, psychosis, heightened aggression, uncontrollable despair, dementia, mania, paranoia, and various other behavioral disorders. It is not known how or why SCP-589 does this, though there is speculation that SCP-589 "feeds" off of the mental anguish it causes to those completely obsessed with it. Once the process is complete, SCP-589 will reappear in another random location and repeat the cycle.
SCP-589 was tracked down and contained after the Foundation received a string of mysterious reports of villages and towns in rural areas being found with their entire populations dead, apparently having slaughtered each other in a massive and violent riot. The Foundation began tracking these incidents, but could not determine their cause until Dr. ████████ discovered a pattern in the targeted areas. Using the data Dr. ████████ provided, the Foundation managed to intercept and contain SCP-589, though several personnel had to undergo rigorous psychological treatment to counter the effects of SCP-589. Currently, SCP-589 has not attempted to leave its containment area, which has led researchers to hypothesize that SCP-589 follows a very specific life cycle pattern.
Infection Pattern: After various experiments on test groups consisting of D-class personnel, SCP-589 appears to be solely targeted at individuals with severe insecurities, or those suffering from high amounts of stress. Infection rates on subjects whose psychological profiles suggested that they were susceptible to high amounts of stress or low self esteem showed a 90% infection rate, while subjects with little to no stress and high self esteem only suffered from a 12% infection rate. This confirms Dr. ████████'s initial hypothesis that SCP-589 targets areas with high numbers of people that are easy for it to infect.
Sentience Hypothesis: It is a real possibility that SCP-589 may in fact be a sentient creature, rather than an inanimate object. Study of SCP-589's movement patterns, correlated with data about its infection patterns suggests that SCP-589 deliberately controls where it appears at the beginning of every cycle. However, we need more data and experiments in order to confirm this.
Administrative Note: Due to catastrophic loss of containment during Experiment 589-05, resulting in Incident 589-40, SCP-589 is to be permanently kept in its secure container. Any request to remove SCP-589 requires O5 level clearance.