SCP-418-FR
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SCP-418-FR before it was captured

Item #: SCP-418-FR

Threat Level: Green

Object Class: Euclid

Special Containment Procedures: SCP-418-FR is housed at Site-Aleph in an enclosure furnished with three bookshelves containing a variety of books. Research personnel may freely visit SCP-418-FR's enclosure in order to prevent loneliness. Research personnel may bring literature inside of the enclosure to feed SCP-418-FR with an upper limit of 10 works per day in total.

As it is unknown how brittle SCP-418-FR's main material is, personnel must avoid collisions with the anomaly. Entering personnel must ensure to leave important documents, which might be altered by SCP-418-FR, outside of the enclosure. Dr Vicat must be notified of any changes in the anomaly's behavior.

Description: SCP-418-FR is a ceramic garden ornament representing a black sheep, 55 cm tall and 75 cm long. SCP-418-FR is animated and capable of movements that should fracture the material it is made of. Although the object has no metabolism and is completely hollow, its behavior, memory, intelligence and motor skills match those of an actual sheep. It does not excrete any fluids but does possess a mouth and a anus used for feeding. Unlike most non-anomalous sheep, SCP-418-FR will preferably sleep inside libraries or other places containing books.

SCP-418-FR feeds by foraging for a book, opening it at a random page and tearing a piece of paper bearing exactly one (1) word, which is then swallowed towards its internal cavity. The anomaly does not appear to feed on the paper itself, but on the word it carries; closing and re-opening the aforementioned book after SCP-418-FR's intervention will cause its plot to be rewritten so that it excludes the concept consumed by the entity. For example, a copy of the novel Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone where the word "magic" has been consumed relates the ordinary school life of characters without any supernatural powers. For a complete list of experiments, see the 418-FR Experiment Log. The object appears to favor nouns and verbs over grammatical words like articles and prepositions.

Entities similar to SCP-418-FR have been known to writers and librarians at least since ancient Egypt, when the scribes running the Library of Alexandria complained about certain scrolls being inexplicably rewritten. In 1980, archeological excavations revealed a copy of On the Measurement of the Earth by the Greek philosopher Eratosthenes dated to the IIIrd century BCE, in which the circumference of the Earth is calculated with relative precision. This find seems to indicate that this work has been greatly affected by SCP-418-FR which erased several other observations from it. In the unaltered copy, using a technique similar to the camera obscura, the precursor of photography, Eratosthenes allegedly detected an exoplanet transiting in front of its host star, a feat that would only be reproduced 2300 years later.

French author Jules Vernes states in a letter in 1900 that the publicly distributed version of his novel Around the World in Eighty Days differs from his manuscript. In the latter, Phileas Fogg and his friends traverse an imaginary country in Asia called the Empire of Aidatoum, a land of vast foggy plains where all objects and concepts are doubled. Aidatoumites have four arms, four eyes and two hearts, and in the skies shine two suns and two moons. Upon returning to London, Phileas Fogg first believes he has lost his bet, then realizes the two days spent in Aidatoum only count as one, since time passes twice as fast there. In the publicly available version, there is not a single mention of the Empire of Aidatoum and the final twist is due to time zones. Around the World in Eighty Days was originally published as a serial in the French daily newspaper Le Temps, whose archivists had documented a phenomenon similar to SCP-418-FR.

According to observations, SCP-418-FR considers as food any object bearing information identifiable by at least one human being. The writing system used has no importance and is not even necessary: the anomaly can consume works consisting entirely of pictures. Although SCP-418-FR can attempt to consume hard objects, its jaw strength does not exceed that of a non-anomalous sheep. Once a work is altered by the entity, the changes cannot be reversed. Analyses of the resulting books have confirmed that the modifications are physical, as opposed to a hypothetical memetic effect.

A garden gnome with similar properties was found within SCP-2602, which used to be a library.

Addendum: Discovery and history

A "strange, black sheep" roaming Site-Aleph was reported on 20th October 2008. After it was captured, Dr Vicat, who claimed the anomaly belonged to him, was interviewed by Dr Sirc. They identified the source of the anomaly as the various People of Interest who are responsible for containing SCP-298-FR, a place with thaumaturgical properties. Below is an interview of those People of Interest.

Dr Vicat and Dr Sirc then traveled to Poland to meet Dr Józef Marek, an expert on Sarkic cults who participates in SCP-473-FR's containement. He recognized the ritual described by PoI-1281 and provided information regarding its putative origin.

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