A Ritual of Blood
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Item Designation: SCP-ARBR

Artifact Class: Euclid

Special Containment Procedures: Foundation webcrawlers are monitoring emergency lines, online forums related to religious disillusion, and internal hospital communications for keywords associated with SCP-ARBR events.

Surviving SCP-ARBR-1 instances are to be transferred to Site-34 under the pretense of indefinite psychiatric detention.

Description: SCP-ARBR is an anomalous phenomena in which random individuals will develop the desire to drink human blood. SCP-ARBR-1 instances are not under the effect of any sort of compulsion, but instead appear to have had their gustatory cortex altered to find the taste of blood extremely pleasurable1, and are endowed with the knowledge of it. While instances are fully aware of the risk of drinking blood such as blood-borne diseases and iron overdosing, attempts to dissuade them have failed.

SCP-ARBR-1 instances will typically seek out other instances, forming communities varying from a few dozen to eight hundred, the largest recorded. Instances will go about their daily lives, but gather one day on the weekend2 for a ritual.

One instance will open a wound on their body with a sharp implement, collecting their blood in a pitcher. Other instances may also assist with filling the pitcher, or the instance may willingly bleed until the point of death by exsanguination. The blood is then poured out to all instances present to be consumed, typically with a small amount of freshly baked bread.

It has been noted that all instances observed so far appear to possess a specialized case of insectophobia, showing fear and revulsion in the presence of flying insects. For unknown reasons, this effect appears strongest with insects belonging to the Cicada family.

Discovery: While it is currently unknown how SCP-ARBR formed, the first recorded cases date back to approximately 1978, in Rome, Italy. Twelve instances had formed a community in the sewers, occasionally kidnapping the homeless and other undesirables for nourishment. The instances gained worldwide fame upon their arrest by the Italian authorities for their torture of their victims via crucifixion.3

Upon the news of a "vampire cult" that had been discovered, the Foundation sent agents to interrogate the instances, but concluded that the murders and blood-drinking was non-anomalous in nature. Official classification of SCP-ARBR would not take place until 1996, after the rise in similar cases could not be further attributed to copy-cats. Due to the extreme notoriety of the original instances, the Foundation was unable to detain them for study.

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Interviewed: SCP-ARBR-1-23

Interviewer: Dr Hartle

Foreword: SCP-ARBR-1-23 had been reported to authorities in the city of Jerusalem by her family after she was witnessed drinking her own blood.

[BEGIN LOG]

Hartle: Good evening, Priestess. Apologies for the interruption, may I sit down?

Saliba: Of course, of course. Can I offer you a glass?

[Saliba gestures to the pitcher of her blood on the table.]

Hartle: Er, no, I'm good. Don't want to spoil my appetite. Though I did want to speak to you about that, if you had a few minutes of time…

Saliba: As long as you're not trying to convince me I'm a monster, go ahead.

Hartle: Thank you. I just wanted to ask you about how, uh, your blood tastes. What about it appeals to you?

Saliba: It's the same reason I like honey or pizza or hot chocolate. Because it tastes delicious. It has a bit of sourness, true, but there's an underlying sweetness to it that really makes it worthwhile.

Hartle: You say it like it tastes like wine.

Saliba: Laughs Life experience, perhaps. Growing up in an Asherah4 household, I've been drinking it since I was thirteen. Do you drink?

Hartle: As I get older, not as much. You say you were raised in an Asherah household? Why'd you turn away from her?

Saliba pauses, placing down her fork.

Saliba: Already here, are we?

Hartle: It's an interview, not a friendly visit. So what happened? What made you believe drinking blood was more important than serving as an, uh, adherent of Asherah?

Saliba: Prostitute, I think you meant to say. Don't worry, I'm not offended. And it wasn't that, it was more of a revelation, rather than whatever you're implying.

Hartle: Enlighten me, then.

Saliba looks towards the ceiling for a moment.

Saliba: I'm not sure I can fully explain it myself. Something in me just changed. I felt… different. Like I had risen that morning as a new person. I looked at the fire temple on my street, and felt disgust. I mean, look at all the shit happening today. Where's Asherah or Gad or Sydyk in all this? Where are any of my gods? I came to a realization, I think, around the time of that shooting in Anahuac during all those protests.5

Hartle: Religious disillusionment, then?

Saliba: Something like that, I suppose.

Hartle: Hmm. I'd argue that to me, it seems you're trading one religious practice for another. Cups of blood and pieces of bread in a ritualized fashion, gathering together on sacred days…

Saliba shrugs, taking a drink.

Saliba: Perhaps I have. There is a certain familiar feeling about it. It makes me feel safe, like when my parents took me to the temple for my first time. Like something- or someone, I suppose- is watching over us all.

Hartle: And what would that be, then? If you don't believe in any of the pantheons…

Saliba: I'm not sure. Perhaps we'll never know. The taste of my blood is enough faith for me.

<End Log>

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