Agent Greenwell was by no means afraid, only strongly wishing to be elsewhere. As he ran, quickly avoiding small chunks of rubble and broken machinery, his thoughts remained more on the past then the immediate situation at hand. The day’s shift, indeed his entire tour inside SCP-110, had been quiet and routine. Constant work was being done to map and catalog all the areas, engineers were working on ways to crack into the vast areas still sealed off, and there had been no disappearances or deaths for months. Even the main power grid was starting to give up its secrets.
A deep, bass throb pulsed through the air around Agent Greenwell, accompanied by a shudder in the ground under his feet. He fell, small bits of dust and plaster drifted down from the high-domed ceiling, bringing both a sudden, sharp pain in his ankle and the current situation to the forefront of his mind. Greenwell rose, limping forward as another, louder pulse shook the air and ground.
They had located a module, labeled “Civic Reclamation: Global Class”. The whole city was riddled with these “modules”, tiny little self-contained booths, containing everything from emergency supplies to whole laboratories. They appeared to have been activated when the Event happened to SCP-110. Most were still closed, with others appearing to have been damaged or looted at some point. However, this one was different. It was huge, bigger then four city blocks, and heavily re-enforced. It also appeared to have been opened at one point, and then closed back up some time later.
The team slated to crack it open had gone out that morning. Everything was going as planned, until a sudden loss of contact. Agents had responded to find the entire module missing, along with the staff. Greenwell had responded with them, and had been the first to notice that they had lost contact with Core Services.
Another heavy rumble rattled through the floor, followed by the faint sound of crashing and twisting metal. Agent Greenwell limped faster, looking around the open area for any nearby doors or exits, and finding none. He gasped as a misstep sent a screaming bolt of pain up his leg, and quickly fell behind a heap of twisted stone and metal, gripping his tortured ankle and feeling the bone slide unnaturally.
The deep bass pulse came again, loud enough to rattle marble-sized stones on the tile, followed by another…and another. Agent Greenwell balled up, trying to be as small as possible, fighting the gnawing little rat of fear that was trying to work its way into him. The heavy pulse abruptly stopped, the final tone hard enough to make his heart rattle in his chest.
He stayed silent and still, balled as tight to the hunk of rubble as he could, listening. Nothing came to his ears, just the faint sound of dust settling. He rose, slowly, plotting a clear path to the east wall amid the rubble, trying to sight something to use as a crutch. It was as Agent Greenwell started to hobble to a promising chunk of pipe that a harsh blast of steam and sound burst both his eardrums and sent him sprawling to the ground.
He screamed, holding his head, blood flowing between his fingers as the shadow loomed over him, floodlights blinding him as the pulse hammered him again, sending Agent Greenwell into a spasm of agony. Blind and deaf, he screamed again as hard metal points suddenly dug into his flesh and roughly lifted him, his head spinning and awash in pain.
He felt rather then heard the grinding of gears, the crackle of electricity. He felt oil, smoke and ash instantly cake to his skin, the taste of metal thick and gagging in his mouth as more hooks and points burrowed into his flesh. As he felt something start to grind and crush his feet, moving up to his ankles, he acknowledged one thing before thought was lost in a wash of pain, blood and oblivion.
He was afraid.
-Warning!- Contact lost with SCP-110 command and security. Initiating lock-down. Situation reported to O5 Command.
Grant entered the room, pausing briefly to examine the faces arranged before him with a suspicious glare before sitting down.
He reached into his pocket, digging out a battered box of cigarettes and a pulled one out.“Heh, still looking us through for doppelgangers Grant?” laughed Richards, running his hand over his shaved head unconsciously.
“Happened before. Take no chances,” grunted Grant, lighting the cigarette with a thick metal lighter and taking a long drag. “So what do you think it is this time? Mutating virus? Artifact retrieval? Or just your stereotypical big nasty?” he asked.
Grant shrugged, eyes on the floor as he hunched over, leaning on his knees and exhaling a frail cloud of wispy grey smoke. “Don’t care. Just wanna kill it and go home,” he mumbled in response.
“You, me and pretty much everyone here man,” Richards replied, leaning back in his chair and folding his arms behind his head. Everyone always does he thought to himself, eyes running across those assembled.
Everyone was tense, as they always were before a mission. Sure, it was masked beneath a thick veneer of joking and comradely, but if you knew where to look, the signs were there. The newbies would fidget unconsciously with little things at hand, chuckling nervously as they made idiotic boasts, betraying their ignorance of the things they would inevitably fight, and sometimes die to.
The veterans would smile and joke, though the humor never reached their eyes, as they had seen too many friends succumb to the horrors of their line of work, both physically and figuratively.
And then there were the loners like Grant, who never connected with anyone, just sat there, waiting for the mission to start like a man would an execution.
The door opened again, and upon seeing who it was, everyone went silent.
The man paced through the center of the benches, picking up everything with those bored eyes, before slouching against the wall at the end.
“So… boss, you know what’s going down?” asked Hill nervously. Everything that was ever said to the boss was almost always said nervously. A slight side effect of the boss being completely psychotic and liable to snap with little to no provoking.
“No,” he replied tersely.
Hill opened her mouth to say something else, but slowly closed it, rather than tempt fate.
Smart move, thought Richards. Now that he was here, all comradely music and such quieted down, trying to be as inauspicious as a man tip toeing through a minefield.
This continued for some time, until suddenly, the view screen at the end of the room lit up, displaying a blank screen with only the words “AUDIO ONLY” stretched across the middle in bright red lettering.
Everyone began to shift in their seats uncomfortably at this new development.
They only used the view screen when they were delivering messages that they wouldn’t in person.
The man slumped against the wall narrowed his eyes at the screen, looking in irritation at the small camera positioned in above it.
“Omega Seven, here are your orders. We have recently received a distress call from an outpost inside a recently unearthed SCP site. Since receiving that message, we have completely lost contact with the area,” informed the disembodied voice coming from the VDU’s tinny speakers. “You are to investigate the area and exterminate any and all threats in the immediate vicinity. Transport is in three hours at docking bay four, and all equipment will be provided enroute,” it ordered calmly.
“Huh… seems pretty standard,” replied Foley.
Then, almost as if an afterthought, the speakers called out once more. “Also, Pandora’s Box will be protecting, escorting and working with Mobile Task Force Zeta-9.
The room went dead silent as the view screen faded to black, save for a very slight crack sound at the very back of the room, followed by the sound of something small, light and hard tumbling across the floor.
The entire group, as a whole, turned to look at the source of this sound. The boss had clenched his teeth so hard that one of them had cracked and popped out of his hideous grin underneath the immense strain, his jaws clamping down like an industrial vise.
The room emptied in seconds.
██/██/██ - 0900 Hours: Mobile Force Omega-7 informed of mission and mission specifics.
Briefing room 8 completely destroyed by SCP-076-2
“Listen…Hey, listen up…guys…LISTEN UP!” Roy shouted into the common room, quieting the rumble of voices from the Zeta-9 team. A few more members ambled out of the equipment room in full suits, clomping across the room like shock troopers from every Evil Empire in sci-fi history. Several men strengthened up in their chairs, elbowing others with a whispered “knock it off!” as the room quieted. After a look around the room, to assure everyone’s full attention, Roy cleared his throat, and addressed the men. “Alright folks, I know everyone’s heard the rumors about us getting mothballed after that SCP-455 cock-up last year. Let me lay those to rest right now. At 0900 hours, we received a dispatch order. Everyone is to suit up immediately after this meeting, and report to Dispatch. I’ll turn this over to Lev for the details.”
Roy sat down amid a murmur of hushed conversation and suppressed groans. Two younger men looked at each other, grinning excitedly. The murmur stopped when one of the suited men stepped forward, cracking the seal on his helmet and removing it as he stepped into the center of the circle of men. Lev Shatterman’s face, looking oddly small on the bulky, armored suit, was as grim as ever. His deep voice boomed into the room, the thick Russian accent giving everything a heavy note of command. “Comrades, we have lost contact with the support team inside SCP-110. Hostile activity has been suggested as a cause. The site is currently locked down to prevent any further containment failures. Someone is needed to crack the seal, restore containment, and find out what happened. That someone will be Team Zeta-9.”
Cheers and groans rose up in equal amounts, the two younger men exchanging a high-five and grinning. Lev cleared his throat hard, silencing the room. “We will be working with many support services and teams, and will function as forward recon. We have been selected for our small size, high mobility, high survival rate, and large-scale SCP experience.” Lev paused a moment, shifting his helmet in his hands as the men murmured quietly. “Due to the high probability of hostile resistance inside SCP-110, we will be teamed with a combat-based response team to provide combat support, with our function being focused on recon and investigation.”
The room went silent as everyone slowly turned to look at Lev. Roy was the first to speak. “Lev…what the hell does that mean? Are you saying we have to work with some guns-blazing, gung-ho strike force full of kids who think they’ll be the world’s next big hero?” Lev shook his head, readying his helmet in his hand. “No. As I understand it, our support team is more close-quarters based. We will receive support from Team Omega-7, lead by SCP-076-2. Dismissed, everyone report to dispatch in one hour.”
Lev snapped his helmet back into place, and strode quickly from the room. The remaining men were stone silent, still staring where Lev had been. They started to file out, slowly, the two younger men pale and almost sick looking. Roy watched the room empty, and shook his head, muttering under his breath. “…might as well just shoot ourselves now and get it over and done with…”
Dispatch issued to Zeta-9 at 0900 hours. All teams proceeding to set rally points. Operation will commence ASAP. Request by SCP-076-2 to remove Zeta-9 from operations denied. Request by multiple members of Zeta-9 for temporary leave denied.
The Lockdown - Closed - Under Construction