Zyn
rating: 0+x
desirepath.jpg

A "desire path" walkway affected by SCP-XXXX.

Item #: SCP-XXXX

Object Class: Keter

Special Containment Procedures: Foundation web crawlers are to monitor the internet for news reports, personal blog posts, and forum discussions involving manifestations of SCP-XXXX. Should a location associated with SCP-XXXX occurrences be identified and confirmed by Foundation personnel, deterrents are to be gradually introduced to the area to dissuade passersby from traveling the nearby pathways on foot at high speed.

Disinformation responses are to be released following any reports from individuals who have encountered an SCP-XXXX location; the claims are to be dismissed as part of a popular urban hoax. Any mentions of a "Professor Faymaren" (tentatively designated PoI-XXXX, along with associated alternate spellings) are to be investigated, to facilitate the identification and detainment of the presumably anomalous individual using the name(s).

Experimentation involving an SCP-XXXX location requires permission from the Site Director or a Level-4 personnel member present at the nearest Foundation facility.

Description: SCP-XXXX is a phenomenon that manifests on unpaved walkways made over time by human foot traffic1. Based on gathered reports, it is currently believed that SCP-XXXX manifestations are primarily localized to England and France.

When a human travels over such a walkway on foot at a relatively quick pace (taking into account physique and potential encumbrance due to items being carried), SCP-XXXX will cause the following to occur:

  • White down feathers will manifest at the soles of the individual’s feet or footwear, and trail behind them until they reach the end of the pathway. (If not soon picked up, the feathers will disappear.)
  • Standing or slower-moving individuals on the pathway will move aside to let the individual pass.
  • If the individual drops something they are carrying, the item will briefly remain hovering in place.
  • The individual’s clothing will take on a luminescent sheen. This effect persists for a few minutes, and causes clothing to repel water in the event of rain or snow.
  • Upon reaching the halfway point of the pathway, the individual will hear an unidentified crowd chanting motivational lines to them, including phrases "We believe in you!" and "You can do it!"
  • (Pending confirmation) after leaving the pathway, the individual will reach their intended destination without any interruptions, including those caused by traffic, illness (e.g., needing to blow one’s nose), and need to use restrooms.

It has been observed that SCP-XXXX will not manifest for all individuals. Foundation-monitored experiments have indicated that the following personal history factors tend to be associated with a failure to activate SCP-XXXX:

  • Individual’s family was financially secure and provided for them for the majority of their juvenile and adolescent life.
  • Individual has a strong emotional support system.
  • Individual has not experienced many major life-changing negative events (e.g., loss of a parent, eviction).
  • Individual’s stress levels are low (compared to those of other test subjects).
  • Individual scores high on neuroticism scales and/or possesses a fairly negative worldview.

SCP-XXXX’s first noted manifestation occurred at the University of Cambridge, following a hit-and-run incident that left undergraduate student ██████ ████ unable to attend classes and her part-time job. The student was later interviewed by campus staff about her experience, and stated that she received counseling from an elderly benefactress named "Professor Faymaren" (PoI-XXXX)2 who encouraged Miss ████ to continue with her dreams despite the hardships she currently faced, and introduced her to the pathway later confirmed to be affected by SCP-XXXX.

Foundation records indicate that the student later successfully applied for and received financial aid from a philanthropic society, completed her education, secured employment as a well-respected teacher, and married the headmaster of a neighboring school. Foundation surveillance was eventually withdrawn six months following the individual’s wedding,3 which was held on the university grounds near the SCP-XXXX-affected pathway (as the couple stated that was the location where they first met).

Before Foundation intervention, Miss ████ had also encouraged coworkers and students to traverse the pathway that had "brought her good luck". Investigations are ongoing; gathered data thus far indicates that approximately 80% of interviewed individuals who went out of their way to travel over the SCP-XXXX-affected pathway found their lives changed in sudden events4 that they were "surprised by, but eternally grateful for". Professor Faymaren was cited frequently as the recurring benefactress; other name variations mentioned by interviewees included "Faemeren", and "F. Marraine". Thus far, all Foundation attempts to locate the alleged benefactress(es) have failed.

Addendum SCP-XXXX-1: On ██/██/████, the SCP-XXXX research team conducted an experiment involving former MTF agent █████ ████████ (of Esoteric MTF Team █████-█), who due to myotonic muscular dystrophy is unable to walk unassisted and as such entered an early retirement. Agent ████████ was asked to travel the length of an SCP-XXXX-affected pathway using his mechanized wheelchair.

The agent's service dog was allowed to follow; SCP-XXXX’s “feathers effect” was noted to manifest for both the individual and his dog (who had been a shelter rescue, prior to adoption by the MTF agent as a therapy animal). Both individuals later received a package in the mail with no return address, containing a first-edition illustrated book of fairy tales and a tin of homemade dog treats. The items were determined to be non-anomalous, though the book was identified by Agent ████████ as being identical to a copy he had lost as a child, during a cross-country move necessitated by his father's change in employment. Both items were released to the custody of Agent ████████ and his service dog.

At this time, the SCP-XXXX research team is accepting volunteers for further test subjects.


Reviewers in chat: asaucedev, Kilonova, Jak (x2), RockTeethMothEyes, LuciusIII, MalyceGraves, Calibri_Bold, TheMightyMcB

Particular thanks to asaucedev and TheMightyMcB for line-by-line specifics, and Jak for reading this twice!

Reviewers in PM: Cerastes

Image: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Diagonal_path,_Recreation_Ground,_Burley_-_geograph.org.uk_-_263086.jpg