Object ID#: XXX
Object class: Safe
Special Containment Procedures: SCP-XXX is to be kept in a double-locked box (preferably steel or similar metal) within Site ██. No access is to be permitted without clearance from Site ██ Command or higher authority. Any person seen wearing SCP-XXX is to be detained and taken to the nearest surgical facility for treatment. Any person seen displaying SCP-XXX-1 is to be considered a class 1 hazard and eliminated on sight.
Description: SCP-XXX is a pair of white gloves of unknown make and manufacture. Microscopic analysis shows the fabric to be an extremely fine leather with an inner layer of what appears to be a dark red silk. Attempts to separate samples from either layer for further analysis have failed.
SCP-XXX's unusual properties only manifest when both gloves are worn. The silk layer appears to bond with the wearer's hands, with MRI scans suggesting that the silk extrudes tendrils into the wearer's sensory and motor nervous system. These tendrils are withdrawn in the event of the host's death or the amputation of the hand in question, suggesting a sensing mechanism based on pulse or temperature.
Once donned, XXX proceeds through three distinct phases:
Phase 1 (up to three hours after initial contact): Subject displays no unusual or heightened abilities. The subject will not voluntarily remove the gloves in this period, often claiming them to be 'lucky' and will violently resist any attempt at removal. Forcible separation of SCP-XXX from a host in the early stages of this phase can be achieved by peeling the gloves away from the subject's hands (with an average of 82% loss of the dermal layers) but amputation should be considered a more expedient solution in all but the briefest exposure.
Phase 2 (3 to 24 hours after contact): Infiltration of subject's nervous system continues. Subject begins to compulsively play a complex rhythm - termed SCP-XXX-1 - with whatever methods are at hand, gradually becoming more confident and accurate as time passes. Musical instruments are preferred, but subjects have been observed to vocalise or use their hands and a suitable surface if denied an instrument. If SCP-XXX is removed from a subject in this phase - usually by the amputation of both arms - then the subject remembers little or nothing after the beginning of phase 2.
Phase 3 (24 hours or more after contact): Subject attains proficiency in playing the implanted rhythm and seeks to play it to others at any opportunity, often by tapping the fingers and will repeat SCP-XXX-1, eventually to the exclusion of all else. Atrial fibrillation has been observed in subjects at this stage, with the Q-Q interval matching the 'main' beat and other intervals (notably P-S and P-R) providing ornamentation. Death by heart failure or starvation is the usual endpoint of phase 3.
It should be noted that, when reproduced with sufficient accuracy, this rhythm constitutes a memetic hazard. Any person repeatedly exposed to a sufficiently precise rendition - auditory or visual - of SCP-XXX-1 will become obsessed with recreating it as per Stage 2 before proceeding to a phase 3 analogue, further spreading SCP-XXX. The degree of repetition appears to vary with the susceptibility of the subject and the accuracy of the rendition, but the shortest an infection has occurred in under 3 seconds.
Background: SCP-XXX was acquired on ██/██/20██ in the aftermath of [DATA REDACTED]. One of the contestants (hereafter referred to as Subject Zero) had acquired the gloves from an unknown source and had worn them for approximately 18 hours prior to his appearance on the programme. The resulting performance of SCP-XXX-1 was imperfect, but the judges described it as 'catchy' and being 'a strong, real beat' (sic). Television audience approval secured the subject's passage into the next round, scheduled for two weeks later.
This delay saved the United Kingdom from a memetic attack with an estimated death toll of ██ million. Five days after the episode's recording and broadcast, Subject Zero was found dead at his home. During the post-mortem examination, Mr. ██████, consultant pathologist at [DATA REDACTED], observed ███ puncture marks on Subject Zero's hands and wrists. The unusual wound pattern was reported to [DATA REDACTED] and thus came to the attention of the Foundation and Subject Zero's personal effects were immediately seized using [DATA REDACTED]. Class C amnesiacs have been administered to all non-Foundation personnel involved and false memories have been implanted to support the falsified conclusion of the post-mortem examination: that Subject Zero died of heart failure secondary to [DATA REDACTED].
Testing: Initial testing isolated SCP-XXX after D-4452 donned the gloves [DATA EXPUNGED] with one casualty. Subsequent limited-exposure testing in a more controlled environment established the time limit for removal of SCP-XXX without major tissue damage to the hands and wrists as ██ seconds.
The initial hypothesis - that SCP-XXX was a previously unknown parasite camouflaged for an urban environment - was quickly dismissed. SCP-XXX consumes no food, excretes no waste, does not breed and is incapable of significant action without a host.
SCP-XXX-1 was discovered during testing session XXX-23/11/██-D. The replacement research team, aware of the hazard, established an isolation chamber for future experiments. SCP-XXX-1's extreme potential for transmission became apparent after Test XXX-15/02/██-A (see Addendum XXX-15/02/██-A). This incident appeared to confirmnthat SCP-XXX was merely an initial vector for SCP-XXX-1. Testing was halted and current containment for SCP-XXX instituted
Addendum XXX-15/02/██-A: Final testing log of SCP-XXX:
Dr. ██████████: Resuming test log at ██:██, 15/02/██. Present are [DATA REDACTED]. 92 hours have elapsed since D-74656 donned SCP-XXX. Subject has been sedated for the duration of the experiment. Given how the last few tests ended…Evans, any change?
"Evans" (Dr William Evans, Junior Laboratory Assistant): Mostly stable and consistent with a sedated state. His heart rate's risen slightly in the last hour th-
Dr. ██████████: [EXPLETIVE REDACTED]. Pulse has jumped to 155bpm and is irregular. Just had to tempt fate, didn't we…ok, charge the remote defib.
[Two second pause. Control room surveillance shows Dr Evans staring at the ECG readout. His fingers begin to tap out SCP-XXX-1.]
Dr. ██████████: Evans? Are you list…. Secur-[END OF RECORDING - REMAINING FOOTAGE EXPUNGED].
Dr. ██████████ triggered a memetic outbreak alarm at 11:03:21. Site ██ Security responded immediately, shooting Dr. Evans and sterilising the test chamber with remotely controlled flame units. Limited analysis of the ECG recordings confirmed that D-74656's heartbeat had altered to match SCP-XXX-1. SCP-XXX was undamaged by the sterilisation, despite peak temperatures exceeding 2500 Kelvin, and was returned to containment.