The Lid

This page is an archive for a contest entry that was hosted at a special URL. The article has since been ported to the main site as RPC-306.

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Fig. 1: RPC-052 containment area

alpha-yellow.png Registered Phenomena Code: 052 Level 2
Object Class: Alpha-Yellow Restricted


Fig. 2: Photo of RPC-052 taken upon discovery

Hazards: Climatological Hazard, Geological Hazard, Extreme Temperature Hazard, Contact Hazard

Containment Protocols: Given that RPC-052’s origins are currently unknown and its anomalous properties do not have a severe impact on the surrounding towns and villages, only the immediate area surrounding RPC-052 is to be sectioned off under the premise of the land being reserved for wildlife preservation. The monument itself is to be researched via robots equipped with self-heating mechanisms, while the residents of the nearby town of ████████████ are to be questioned in a casual, non-suspicious manner about any information they may know about RPC-052.

Description: RPC-052 is a 3m x 1m x 0.33m rectangular runestone,1 located in the wilderness of Greenland, at latitude ███ longitude ███. The stone itself is made of solid granite and analysis indicates that it has stood in its current location for roughly 1,000 years undisturbed. The runes seem to be of Nordic origin, though the specifics of which clan created it are indiscernible. Perplexingly, at the bottom of RPC-052 is a poem written in English, as opposed to the Nordic runes written across the rest of the stone, of which reads:

May thine fields remain bare,

And the fruits within slumber in peace,

So that order be restored throughout.

For what gluttons dost not chaos reign supreme?


Fig. 3: Nearby town of ████████████

The temperature surrounding RPC-052 in a circular radius of roughly 1,000 km rests at 7 degrees Celsius below temperatures standard to Greenland year-round. This ring of influence encapsulates several small Greenlandic towns and villages. The anomalous drop in temperature rises exponentially the closer one gets to RPC-052, with the runestone itself often measuring in very close to absolute zero, even during summer months. Despite this, no frost or ice build-up occurs on the stone or the immediate surrounding area, though very little plant life can grow due to the extremely low temperatures.

Discovery: RPC-052 was discovered in winter of 1971 when archaeologists within the Authority went on a recreational hike through the wilderness of Greenland. Authority agents were swiftly called in to section off the area upon the death of one of the aforementioned archaeologists due to RPC-052-inflicted frostbite. Since its discovery, RPC-052 has remained in its original location, untouched and unmoving. The runestone's anomalous properties with regards to temperature have mysteriously increased in strength and range tenfold since new containment protocols were implemented in early 2000.

Addendum 052.1: Video Log of Interview with Local Resident of ████████████

NOTE: The following log is taken from an "interview" between Agent Kessler, operating under his full name, and ████████████'s local bartender, herein referred to as "Bartender". Two other men were present, herein referred to as "PoI-052-1" and "PoI-052-2".


00:00 - 06:02

Camera 1: [ Camera shows PoI-052-1 and PoI-052-2 sitting at the bar, making small talk with Bartender as he pours them two pints of Greenlandic coffee. The tiny bell on the door rings as Agent Kessler strolls in. Bartender greets him at the door, shaking his hand. ]

Bartender: Ah, welcome back! I hope you've come for what I think you have.

Kessler: You bet. Four hours of hiking in the mountains and all a man cares about is a nice drink.

[ Bartender and Kessler laugh as Bartender walks behind the bar and Kessler sits on one of the stools. PoI-052-1 and PoI-052-2 look Kessler's way and nod before going back to their drinks. ]

Bartender: So! What'll it be this time?

Kessler: Same as last, I think. I ate before I came.

[ Bartender pulls out a fresh bottle of Grand Marnier in preparation to make more Greenlandic coffee. ]

Bartender: Doesn't matter to me. Far as I see it, this'll warm you up just fine.

[ Kessler chuckles. ]

Kessler: Damn straight. You know how cold it is out there?

[ Bartender shrugs. ]

Bartender: Welcome to ████████████.

[ Bartender begins pouring as Kessler shifts in his seat. ]

Kessler: I've been to places in Greenland that were cold. This is antarctic.

Bartender: I don't know what to tell you, friend. Wear more layers?

[ Kessler shrugs. ]

Kessler: Yeah. Maybe.

[ Bartender pulls out a bottle of whiskey and starts pouring. ]

Kessler: It usually this cold year round?

[ Bartender suddenly stops pouring. PoI-052-1 shifts in his seat before sipping from his drink. Bartender goes back to pouring. ]

Bartender: Yes, it is. Can't help it.

Kessler: Part of me wonders why, but I know you're no weatherman, so…

[ PoI-052-2 coughs. ]

Bartender: You're right about that. I wish I knew myself.

Kessler: Sure, sure.

[ Bartender pulls out a bottle of Kahlúa and starts pouring. ]

Kessler: That reminds me.

[ Kessler digs into his pocket and pulls out a photo of RPC-052. PoI-052-1 and PoI-052-2 look towards the photo as he holds it up. ]

Kessler: I found this thing while I was out hiking.

[ Kessler places the photo down on the bar counter. Bartender finishes pouring and looks at it. ]

Bartender: What is it? I can barely see.

Kessler: I couldn't tell that well either, but it looks like a runestone.

[ PoI-052-2 clears his throat as he takes another sip from his drink. ]

Bartender: A what?

Kessler: Stone with runes on it. Just like it sounds.

Bartender: What is it doing out in the middle of nowhere?

[ Kessler chuckles as Bartender turns back around to start brewing coffee. ]

Kessler: Wouldn't I like to know. I tried to get closer, but it was so cold out I had to come back.

[ Bartender shrugs. ]

Bartender: Again, welcome to ████████████.

Kessler: This was different. It felt like… It was getting colder the closer I got. It was weird.

[ PoI-052-1 snickers. ]

PoI-052-1: Must be God tellin' ya somethin'.

Kessler: What?

PoI-052-2: Yeah. Ever hear that sayin' with curiosity and the cat?

[ Kessler reluctantly shrugs. ]

Kessler: I guess. Pretty cool find, though.

[ PoI-052-1 and PoI-052-2 go back to drinking as Bartender finishes brewing coffee. He mixes the drinks together in silence. ]

Kessler: So how's your family doing?

[ Bartender turns around with the finished drink. The glass is filled completely to the rim. ]

Bartender: Great as always. █████ has gotten into fishing, just like I knew he would. Careful with this glass, it'll spill.

[ As he says this, Bartender temporarily loses his grip on the glass and Greenlandic coffee splashes onto the photo of RPC-052, ruining it. PoI-052-1 and PoI-052-2 do not react at all. ]

Bartender: Oh dear! Sorry about that.

Kessler: Oh, no worries. I wasn't gonna put it in the journal.

[ Bartender sighs. ]

Bartender: That's a relief. It would've been terrible of me if you were.

[ The two continue talking about Bartender's family for the duration of the tape. PoI-052-1 and PoI-052-2 mutter to each other when Kessler ultimately leaves. ]

These people are cagey as fuck. Tell the boys in Research to keep an eye out. They know something.

- Kessler

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