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|“||Pure character assassination. Better than confusing me for that thrice-damned rapist on his sodding throne, I suppose, but please restrain presumptions of nicety. I am a tester of men and a god of difficult choices and a keeper of delicate knowledge. An ass by trade. But, that said, I do have a vested interest in keeping mankind alive and well. They keep me both entertained and employed.||„|
|~ The Serpent to Naomi Zairi-Lewitt from "Mud on the Carpet".|
|“||Gossip would have you believe that the Library is located on the Serpent's back. This is a metaphor, taken as fact. The Library was built upon the back of the Serpent, who labored to create this sanctuary of knowledge. The Serpent does not even exist as a true being, it is a Platonic ideal of knowledge at any cost.||„|
|~ The Black Queen on her book Our Prometheus from "Found in a dusty corner of the Library".|
I am the Serpent
|~ From "Serpent Bound \\\ BEAR WITNESS".|
The Serpent also known as Nahash and SCP-4343, is an anti-heroic serpent figure in the SCP mythos based on the Serpent from the Bible. He is established as a fundamental figure in the universe, worshipped by the Wanderer's Library and the Serpent's Hand, and the brother of Ananteshesha/SCP-3000.
Due to lack of canon in the SCP universe, there have been several stories telling the origins of the Serpent. The readers are free to choose whatever origin for their headcanon.
Creator of the Universe
The Serpent and his Dark Brother existed before the creation of the universe. The Serpent represented the existence of "IS", creation and reality that existed which took form of the Wanderer's Library, SCP-1726 and SCP-4001, while his brother represented the reality of "IS NOT", non-existence. The two brothers combined their powers to create all of reality allowing Mekhane and Yaldabaoth to seed the newly created universe with life. The two brothers were revered as holy figures by the people of the city of Audapaupadopolis, and its king, Adam El Asem proclaimed to be the sovereign of everything related to "IS".
Beneath Two Trees
In the tale "Beneath Two Trees", Nahash was originally a protector of the Tree of Knowledge and kept watch over its secret power on behalf of the All-Mighty. He spoke of all the wonders that came with the Tree’s power, the power that would test man’s skill and spirit. His sister, Hakhama/Mekhane, was the guardian of the Tree of Life, keeping watch over its gifts.
During the Scarlet King's conquest, Nahash saw him coming from the east, rising out of the Abyss to consume creation. Nahash became frightened by this and, out of fear, acted out of line. He wanted to attack first, so he spoke to Hawwah, since she was wiser than her husband, and told her of what would happen. He asked her to use the gifts of the Tree of Knowledge against the Daevites, but she declined.
Nahash then spoke to Qayin, warning him of the king in the east and revealing the secret knowledge to him, teaching him the most powerful magics and spells. However the knowledge became a burden on Qayin, his mind strained from this burden, eventually leading him to striking down his brother, Hevel, with a stone, not killing him, but getting Qayin banished from the valley.
After this, Nahash fled, first to the space-tower at Babel, and later on to the Wanderer’s Library, where he remained in penance for his participation in these events.
In ancient times, a warrior cult was formed worshiping the Serpent as the creator of the Library and became known as the Hand of the Serpent. This cult was formed from smart long-lived monks, but eventually as time went on the cult slowly died out, leaving their teachings behind. However, in the modern age, several people came across these teachings which stated that the spread of knowledge was one of the greatest honors that existed and this inspired this group of individuals to christen themselves the New Serpent's Hand. Just like the previous iteration, the new Hand also worshipped the Serpent as the source of knowledge and dedicated their lives to reveal the true nature of the world to humanity, causing them to come into conflict with the SCP Foundation and the Global Occult Coalition.
The SCP Foundation eventually found the Serpent residing on SCP-4343-A, an island which can only accessed through a cave in a mountain in Azores, trapped within a marble building where only his head is visible. The Foundation designated the serpent SCP-4343 and found out that the serpent possessed great abnormal powers, mutating native animal life on island into monsters, one of which possibly became SCP-682, and when the serpent opened its eyes, or made sound would cause an anomalous event on reality, which would be referred to as "Black Events". The Foundation tried to interview SCP-4343, but they learned very little due to its cryptic nature.
During its time under the Foundation custody, the Serpent caused several Black Events: In 1999 it improved the lives of 31 civilians; in 2002 an incantation from an unknown source was heard above the city of Mekka, Saudi Arabia, causing mass panic; in 2004 the Serpent improved the recovery of around 20 people who were suffering from deadly diseases; in 2007 it gave 17 civilians in China reality-bending powers, with a few having realized the truth that the Serpent wanted to show; in 2010 it caused the Hekla volcano to produce winged humanoid entities speaking an unintelligible language and seemed to be in a form of ecstasy before completely vanishing.
When We Came Home
In the tale "When We Came Home", after Mekhane was repaired, Nahash returned from his exile to help his sister and humanity to fight against the Scarlet King. However, his redemption was brief as he was quickly ripped into two by the Scarlet King.
In August 11 2119 in which the world was slowly ending, the Serpent was summoned when SCP-1203 was sacrificed by the Serpent's Hand as part of a ritual. The Serpent was summoned to help reset the world, but this time it decided not to after doing it so many times and then committed suicide by going into the sun. Following its death, the Wanderer's Library was left in disarray and the hive-mind behind the Library's Archivists destroyed.
As its title says, the Serpent resembles a giant snake with scales, but other than that is unknown except that it possesses peacock feathers and is as vast as the mountains. In SCP-4343's file, it is mentioned that its skin resembles that of a dragon and that it possesses three eyes in the visible side of its face.
The Serpent was shown as being enigmatic and cryptic and often tested men with difficult choices, but it does genuinely care for humanity, contrary to the mythology. Being the embodiment of knowledge the Serpent is very wise to an extent, but it appears to be also somewhat of a coward as when the Scarlet King's army conquered its tree, the Serpent fled leaving the People of the Valley on their own. However, the Serpent still wanted to help humanity, using its powers and knowledge to improve their lives and tried to fight the Scarlet King in the final battle.
Powers and Abilities
The Serpent is the embodiment of knowledge and creator of everything that exists. It appears that the Serpent is on a same level of powers as Mekhane and SCP-3000, but it was much weaker when compared to the Scarlet King. As SCP-4343, it was capable of manipulating reality simply by opening its eyes or making a sound, and was also able to manipulate the biology of animal life surrounding it, although it is unknown if it did it willingly or involuntarily. It is presumed that it can also manipulate the "smoke", designated SCP-4343-1 by the Foundation and designated "PROJECT 001" by the Office of Reclamation of Islamic Artifacts.
- The Serpent is not to be confused with neither SCP-722, the actual Jörmungandr from the Norse mythology, or SCP-4959 the real Quetzalcoatl from the Mesoamerican culture. However, since there is no real canon, it is up to the reader if those characters are in any way related to the Serpent.
- When the Foundation attempted to kill SCP-682 using the Gate Guardian, 682 implied that he himself was the Serpent, although this creates contradiction. In SCP-CN-1418-A, a Mekhanite library, there was a book which said that the Scarlet King was the Serpent and brother of SCP-3000.
- In the Anastasis timeline of the “War on All Fronts” canon, the Serpent helped the allied forces of the Foundation and Global Occult Coalition in taking down the monstrous creature known as Tokage-tako.
- In Chapter IV of SCP-001 (djkaktus Proposal III), after learning almost all of the information contained within the Wanderer's Library, O5-10 of the O5 Council took the form of the Serpent when confronting Calvin Lucien.
- Several explorers, including some versions of the Black Queen and Lord Blackwood, tried to find more information about the Serpent, but in the end they came empty handed.
- In SCP-6000 the Serpent was referred to as a female. This can be because, just like with the other deities, it doesn't have an affixed gender.
- Elder Rockwell of the Children of the Scarlet King has expressed great hatred towards the Serpent and is dedicated to rid humanity of the Serpent's Seeds.
- Serpent at the Villains Wiki