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"It’s kinda like an embodiment of the fear of being discovered.... Only not really, more like a creature which existed prior to the fear but grew as that fear gathered around it.... But it also didn't really exist, more like it potentially existed... But looking at it from a nonlinear perspective, it still had physical presence in The Multiverse all along the various spacetime lines... Ah, screw it. It's all eldritch shit and nonsense."—I-330, Mephi
The Slender Man
He held out both arms and there was a moment where his arms grew thin and long, like the branches of a tree, and I let myself be entwined in them.
A faceless abomination who represents the fear of strangers and the unknown. Please see: The Slender Man Mythos
I saw a thing sitting on me, pale and hairless, kind of humanoid, two big black eyes looking straight at me.
A brutal, savage beast -- yet, it is at least capable of human speech and is likely quite intelligent. It represents the fear of brutality and animals, and originates from a creepypasta story.
- Black Eyes of Evil
- The Chessmaster: Or at least that's how Perchance to Dream portrays him...
- Hidden in the Trees also plays him as this
- Genius Bruiser
- More Teeth Than the Osmond Family
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Most people just focus on his claws and teeth and see him as a physical threat. He wouldn't have it any other way.
There is no escape from the Archangel. I understand that now.
The fear of religion, religious dogma and the things associated around it. This may explain why it is, in fact, the afterlife. A twisted bastardisation of that, but all the same.
- And I Must Scream: The ultimate fate of everyone is to be enslaved by the Archangel after death, trapped in a body that moves in accordance with another's will for all eternity. The Archangel is the afterlife after all...
- Catch Phrase: "embrace the archangel"
- Evil Gloating: It can occasionally be seen to giving into something akin to this.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: It has no form of it's own (that we can comprehend) and it thus reduces itself into human forms.
- Malevolent Masked Men: The "gas mask" persona.
- The Puppet Masters
- Religious Horror
- Windows of the Soul: Some of it's victims can be "told" by looking into their eyes. This may be a reason for the gas-mask disguise.
The Cold Boy
The boy's face was cracked. It looked like he was made of ice and when I hit him, it created a single crack down the side of his face.
A small child who sings nursery rhymes. Yet, he could freeze your entire body in a few moments -- and that is nothing compared to what he represents... the fear of the cold and of alienating yourself from others, the Cold Boy could lead one to mistake it for something far less threatening.
There's something in the sea. A thing with ill will. It's coming out of the sea. It's coming out in waves.
An entity of what looks like living water, EAT represents the fear of water and drowning in your obsessions. One drop will infect somebody, causing them to obsess over something, then it will consume and replace all the water in their body and make them into a "Camper."
- The Artifact: One of EAT's names, "the Epping AquaTarkus," was named for two prog songs. They don't have anything to do with it.
- Combat Tentacles
- Genre Savvy: If EAT learns it, it learns it well. Genres included.
- Hive Mind: "We are The Camper, Rael. EAT is The Camper, and The Camper are EAT."
- I Have Many Names: Technically speaking, EAT's only universal name is "EAT," and even then, it's often called "the Ichor" or "Salmacis" or "the Hogweed" or some other name instead. But even when it is called "EAT," what that stands for changes depending on who's talking. The Epping AquaTarkus, the Evolutionary Adverse Trigger, the Eternal Answer Tree, Evolution's Angry Twin, to name a few.
- Perhaps the most common name EAT goes by is "Ichor." It's referred to by that name at least just as much, if not more often, than it is referred to as "EAT." Interestingly, according to at least one Camper in Hidden in the Trees, it actually likes the name EAT.
- Keeper of Forbidden Knowledge: "I'm a being of knowledge." EAT knows many things humans should not, and in the Rapture Logs, some of this information is shared.
- Leitmotif: This is it.
- And this is The Camper's leitmotif.
- Line-of-Sight Name: Sam in Jordan Eats Normally Now named EAT from essentially random song titles.
- Murder Water
- Our Zombies Are Different: The Camper are Type O.
- Rule Of Ten
- Theme Naming: Everything's a prog title.
The Plague Doctor
"A...man walked in and then walked out of the warehouse. He wore some sort of overcoat and a mask, with a long beak. Looked it up later on - it was a Venetian costume, Medico Della Peste. The Doctor of Plague. ...Just looking at him on the security footage made me want to wash my hands until they bled."
The fear of disease and contagion - the Plague Doctor wears a beak-nosed mask (if it is a mask) and long coat. Sometimes, his presence will manifest as a mental disorder or hypochondria.
- Enemy to All Living Things
- Not a Mask (the mask might actually be his face)
- Plaguemaster: He spreads disease just by his very presence. As if that wasn't enough, there are also a number of doctors who serve him, intentionally using contaminated surgical equipment or slipping pathogens into their patients' medication...
- Walking Wasteland
The Wooden Girl
There in the middle of the living room was a woman I had never seen before. She was covered in some sort of wooden armor, with strings all around her. Her face seemed painted on, and she stared straight at me.
- Alternate Character Interpretation: OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING puts her as the fear of abuse.
- Fetish Fuel Station Attendant: Depending on if you're a Nightmare Fetishist.
- The Puppet Masters
"The [Choir] are the ones who invented language itself. They have mastered it so well that they can create and edit life merely by speaking words. They prefer to be.. behind your eyes. Hiding in the pit, if you will.”
The fear of what others say, of what others think about you. The Choir manifests either as a blur in the corner of your eye or as fading shadows on the wall. They change the words people say and will drive their victims to commit suicide.
- Brown Note: The Archive revealed that they can also create a sound that can rupture people's eardrums, shatter glass, and hemorrhage the victim's brain. Yeah.
- Living Shadow: Less intrusive then the Nightlanders, but it has been stated to live inside people's shadows.
The Empty City
It is a land of twisted time and distorted sky -- the space between the tick and the tock.
A sentient city representing the fear of being lost, the Empty City likes to...play with its food. Anyone who opens one of its Doors and goes inside will wander the City, never finding a way out, until they die. It also serves as a neutral meeting place for the Fears and their minions.
- Alien Geometries
- Cool Gate: Sometimes the doors that lead to it look like normal doors. Sometimes, they look awesome.
- Eldritch Location
- Genius Loci
- Malevolent Architecture: If the City wants you dead... you've got no chance.
- Mobile Maze/Living Labyrinth: By some interpretations.
- Painting the Fourth Wall: Often associated with it. Out of the Spent and Unconsidered Earth treats it akin to the House, whereas Quiet Cacophony labels the doors that lead to it as "Doors" .
- Trapped in Another World: The standard fate of those who wander it. Or, perhaps, something else...
The shadows remain on the wall, not laughing at me. The shadows watch me, curious and sympathetic. I feel as if these are creatures I cannot easily name. Nothing can easily describe them. They know me, and I feel as if I know them. They know my delusions all too well, and they have seen my nightmares. They live nightmares every day, trapped as eternal shadows. All they can do is shift along the walls of our disillusioned daydreams, and pray we follow them down the rabbit hole.
Little is known about these living shadows, the fear of the things in the dark. They may or may not have been previous victims of the Empty City -- if they are, they aren't telling.
- Fate Worse Than Death: If the "Victim" theory is to be believed, becoming a Nightlander is worse than death.
- Living Shadow
- Order Versus Chaos: By all accounts, the Nightlanders detest change. They often engage in poltergeist-esque activities, such as moving furniture around to minimise the changes in an environment. If the Empty-City-Victim theory is correct, this is due to the City being a Mobile Maze; the Nightlanders merely want to make sure they haven't wandered back into it by mistake.
- Viral Transformation: It is claimed by some that the Nightlanders are actually people who have wandered into the Empty City and escaped incomplete.
The maid waded to the edge where her cloak was and pulled a knife from the folds. Before my terrifide eyes, she traced the blade along her skin, cutting a smooth line across her left brest. The cut widened on it's own and I could only watch in horrifide silence as a bird climbed out and flew into the sky.
This group of feathered fears represents the fear of heights and of being taken away.
The Blind Man
His lips were cracked; they looked almost the same as his skin, except for the firm line between them. A small nose. His skin was drawn tight, and yet loose; quite indescribable. And then there were his eyes, or lack thereof; two dark holes from which no light escaped.
He wanders libraries, always carrying an old book along with him. The fear of getting old and forgetting, if he writes your name is his book, you will forgot your childhood. Your childhood will belong to him.
- The Adjectival Man
- Eyeless Face: Depending on the interpretation, he either has no eyes or he has abyss-like pits where his eyes should be.
- Mind Screw: An intrinsic quality of his powers as portrayed in Closest to the Sun.
- Transferable Memory: What he can do - he's the master of taking and giving memories.
The Dying Man
"Let me in," he said.
The fear of, well, dying, he unbalances his victims through possession.
- The Adjectival Man
- Body Horror: Possession by the Dying Man will eventually lead to disfigurement and necrosis - according to the Archive, this could mean extra limbs or digits, scales, or cancerous growth of skin and muscle cells.
- Body Surf/Demonic Possession: His modus operandi is to move from one body to another, chemically wrecking whichever body he is inhabiting. He moves on by killing his hosts, hence the name.
I'll be seeing you very soon.
The fear of judgment and punishment. Not much is known about it, only that its victims tend to start seeing an eye watching them everywhere they go... and then mysteriously end up dead.
- Body Motifs: Focusing on the eye, obviously.
- Demonic Possession: When it comes time to kill its victim, it will inhabit the body of another human and call itself "Judgment". Said body will begin to slowly break down immediately.
- Faceless Eye
- Knight Templar
- Paranoia Fuel: It's watching you, and it can see all of your sins...
- The Walls Have Eyes: Usually how it manifest in its first form.
The Manufactured Newborn
Finally, what was left of Maxwell crumpled to the ground, and there above him was a creature of metal and machinery, assembled in a shape not unlike a human fetus, its small arms ending in two long knives. It seemed to float in a nearly invisible sphere, and extending from its stomach was a fleshy and no doubt organic umbilical cord.
The fear of the future, of what is to come, of technology out of control. The Manufactured Newborn is the youngest of the Fears, but still as dangerous. It can appear as a small mechanical toy, slowly building itself bigger and bigger (with inorganic and organic materials), until it's big enough to open a portal to where it's real body lies - a vast tower of clockwork and body parts, machinery a mile high.
- Evil Is Visceral: Despite its mechanical body, it often uses human body parts, like hearts or sinew.
- Fetus Terrible: Its original form was a mechanical fetus.
- Mechanical Monster
"Imagine nothing," he said. "A vast nothingness. A vast and alive nothingness that's spreading. That's overtaking us all."
The fear of nothing. The Silent Void and Screaming Darkness. The Hole in All Things. The Quiet claims us all.
The Smiling Man
He smiled at me and his smile was wider than his face, and he had so many teeth, so many goddamn teeth.
The fear of stalking and stalkers, the Smiling Man was given a "body" by an online group that were trying to create a Fear. It has straggly red hair and a smile wider than its face. While it has eyes, you cannot look at them, they are so wrong. Before it takes its victims, it delivers a bouquet of flowers to them.
- Institutional Apparel: Its sometimes described as wearing a straight jacket.
- More Teeth Than the Osmond Family
- Perpetual Smiler
- Slasher Smile: It's defining characteristic. Just look at its name.
Thousands of bugs from hundreds of species crawled about the walls and floor. They crawled up her bed in a grotesque mob, a sea of limbs and carapaces.
The fear of insects, of swarms and hives and being invaded inside.
- Body Horror: The Intrusion's MO is to crawl inside of people and lay eggs within their bodies. When the eggs hatch, the newborn bugs will then proceed to eat their way out.
- Hive Mind
- Orifice Invasion: What they do to Jess here, which is apparently there standard modus operandi.
The Black Dog
"It moves like a ninja of the apocalypse, and its eyes burn your mind to look at. We thought it was just a regular dog, but no. It tore us apart. Our plans shattered apart. Hell, it left a lot of us with nothing but minor injuries. That’s what scares us the most. What the hell is it trying to do, y’know?”
The fear of being found and your secrets being discovered. The Rapture interpretation depicts it as the fear of the feral unknown, and the fear of Body Horror.
The Unnamed Child
"Oh, right... well, this kid was pretty creepy... Sorta looked like what you expect a homeless kid to look like, but... I don't know... wrong. Like that one abstract painting where the woman's face is melting over her arm or whatever. Sort of like that, but not. It is hard to describe. She didn't say anything, and I didn't get a name or anything."
The fear commitment, responsibility, and the loss of a loved one. She appears as a little girl, and her victims slowly become more and more obsessed with caring for her, often at the expense of everything else in their lives. Then one day, she vanishes, leaving her victims lost, without purpose or hope.
- Adult Fear: Losing a child. Her victims end up spending the rest of their lives desperately searching for her.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Her victims can end up seeming like this
- Creepy Child: How those not being targeted tend to see her. Her victims don't notice the creepiness though.
- Go Mad From the Revelation: Those few victims who do end up finding the Child after she disappears are rewarded by her whispering something in their ear. It is the only time she ever speaks, and everyone she whispers to becomes broken and mad. Theories vary from it being some grand truth humans were not meant to know, to her True Name, to simply the sound of her voice being what causes the insanity.
- Silent Antagonist
- The Unfavorite: If the victim has any kids of his or her own, then those kids will likely be neglected as the Child becomes more and more important to the parent
- The Voiceless
The Mother of Snakes
You begin to cry and claw at yourself, and curse your existence. You beg for a salvation that will never come. That's when you see her. The Mother. The Salvation. The Lady of the Scales. Her scales, her love, her shining light glancing off her fangs as she smiles at me from the darkness. Her beautiful evil. Her every move is one of love, of mercy. Your blood runs cold, just like hers. She tells you everything you ever want to hear.
The Mother of Snakes isn't just the fear of snakes, but the fear of what you are, what you were, and what you might become. Those who hate themselves and look into the mirror will see her and if they accept her, she will make them into her Lilim, whom she gifts with scales, fangs, and the ability to travel through mirrors.
- The Man in the Mirror Talks Back: Sometimes she'll talk to her victims through the mirror, telling them to give in to their darker half.
- Mirror Monster
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent
- Scaled Up: Her Lilim can look like normal women or snake women.
- Snakes Are Sexy: Can be seen as this.
- Snake People
A young girl estimated to be around 12 years of age. She is one of the Wooden Girl's more devoted servants.
- Axe Crazy
- Creepy Child: She's a little girl who laughs when she sees people die, giddily assaults people with a knife, and flirts shamelessly with people who are way too old for her.
- Demonic Possession: How she ultimately meets her fate. The Wooden Girl's body is burned to a crisp, so she hijacks Charlotte's
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Her words concerning her "mistress" are rather... suggestive.
- The Dragon: She fulfills this role for the Wooden Girl in Hidden in the Trees
- Fille Fatale
- Happiness in Slavery: She's fully aware that she's just the Wooden Girl's puppet, and she loves every minute of it.
- Killed Off for Real
- Knife Nut
- The Mole: She once purposefully gained Hunter's trust so that she could aid her mistress in birthing the Manufactured Newborn.
A mysterious, seemingly immortal man who serves the Wooden Girl. He is easily distinguished by his black hoodie and clown mask.
- Axe Crazy: This trope does not even begin to describe him.
- Chaotic Evil: As a number of ARG players once learned the hard way, it's impossible to predict what the Jester will do, but it will more than likely involve grievous bodily harm.
- Complete Monster: Those who played The Puppets Game quickly learned that there are no lines that Jester will not cross.
- Expy: Out of Game, he's been noted to have a similar personality to the Joker. His mask has also been compared to a certain other Joker.
- Legacy Character: The Archive proposes this as a possible explanation for his longevity, though they admit that it's unclear whether he's multiple people or just one immortal one.
- Monster Clown
The Witch of Gatlinburg
A woman who lives in the mountains near Gatlinburg, Tennessee. She is distinguished by her cloak of black feathers and her unique mask, which is made from the skull of a large and unknown species of bird. She serves the Convocation.
- Body Horror: As the original creepypasta demonstrates, she is in the habit of cutting herself open with a knife, and letting birds crawl out of her wounds
- Blondes Are Evil
- Woman in Black
A doctor who runs an institution known as "Shady Lawn." He is a sadistic and demented psychiatrist who works for the Plague Doctor.
- Bedlam House: The way he runs his business
- Mad Scientist
- Meaningful Name: At least one blogger has pondered whether "Beakman" is his real name, or if he named himself in honor of his patron.
- Mind Rape: He seems to enjoy doing this to his patients
- Morally-Ambiguous Doctorate
- Psycho Psychologist
British teenager, American accent. Goes by the name DJay32. Has been running Jordan Eats Normally Now since he was twelve. Currently investigating what happened to Samantha Grant.
Tropes associated with Jordan:
- Author Avatar
- Captain Obvious: "This is getting serious."
- Character Development: After Nathan dies, Jordan goes through a lot of denial and withdrawal into himself, but he seems to be coming out of this a better person. Maybe.
- The Danza
- Dark and Troubled Past: And he won't shut up about it!
- The Determinator
- Dumbass DJ: Averted!
- First-Person Smartass
- Kid Detective
- Most Writers Are Writers
- One of Us
- Selective Obliviousness: Jordan acknowledged early on that there may be a tentacled monster called EAT that's killing people. He then proceeded to dismiss it as "ridiculous" and never acknowledge it ever again, even in the face of many mentions from other bloggers.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: Jordan tends to wear...
- The Storyteller
- Starving Artist: He goes to the Salvation Army to ask for food. He hangs out at the home where his brother and Sam died because he has nothing to do in the day.
- Stepford Smiler: Type-B. He's never clearly scared because he just doesn't care.
A 25-year-old who started brighter than a spoon to post his poetry. Weird things started to happen around him, however, and he began to realize he was something called a "receiver." When he met Agnes Day, a runner who told him he was a receiver, he quickly became involved with her struggle against something called the Cold Boy.
Tropes associated with Tav:
- Blessed with Suck: Being a receiver is not nice. The only power is that you are "tuned in" to the same frequency as the Slender Man (or other Fears) and can hear weird shit.
- Punny Name: Not Tav, but rather Agnes Day ("Agnes Dei" is Latin for "Lamb of God") and her dog Opus ("Opus Dei" means "Work of God"). Immediately lampshaded by him.
- Sleepwalking: Being a receiver doesn't shut off even when he's asleep - causing some of the weirder posts to happen when he's not even conscious.
- Victory-Guided Amnesia: At first, it seems like this, but then it's averted. He remembers, but then slowly starts to forget the time he was away.
Member of an organization that is heavily involved with the Fears. Runs the blog Still Remains Within.
Tropes associated with Peter:
Somewhat timid 19-year old who started a blog called Eccentrically Bored basically to pass the time. He quickly gets caught in the crossfire between the Slender Man and the Archangel. Currently, he is working for Slender Man and calling himself "Steward". He now runs the blog Hidden in the Trees.
Tropes associated with Joey:
- Face Heel Turn
- A Man Is Not a Virgin: Implied to be one of the sources of his insecurities. He mentions his virginity briefly early on, and then, if his interactions with Crystal are any indication, somehow managed to remain one even after spending nearly a month living with her.
- Freak-Out: Something similar in his withdrawal from the pills. He has a rather more extreme one when he realises what the Archangel is.
- Meaningful Name
- The Teetotaler: Amusingly, he gets drunk once, has a nasty hangover, and then resolves never to touch alcohol again.
- Through the Eyes of Madness: During his episode with the mysterious pills (particular during his withdrawal), things get rather... surreal.
Tropes associated with Martin:
Male father who lost his family to the Rake. He now hunts it and records his travels on his blog.
Tropes associated with James
- Berserk Button: Anything to do with the Rake and his family.
- Dead Little Sister: Dead whole family.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Helps Maxwell steal the pocketwatch so he can use it to kill the Rake. This... doesn't turn out well.
- Stoic Woobie
Bill 'Garth' Hogarth
A court bailiff, Garth began making audio recordings of sounds around his house at night. Garth blogged the results of his nightly recordings at Moonlit Whispers, only to discover that what he had been recording was the Rake.
- Miscarriage of Justice: Is eventually (wrongly) arrested for the murders of his neighbour and landlord, in reality committed by the Rake.
- Non-Action Guy: Gets beaten up by his neighbour for daring to ask that he turn his TV down.
- Sanity Slippage
- Shout-Out: His name is the same as an 18th century painter who painted A Rake's Progress.
A Runner who met a man claiming to be God who gave him a knife with the supposed power to kill Fears. Blog here.
- Action Genre Hero Guy: His fight against the fears
Just a regular teen who is haunted by some fears. He meets another person who is haunted and quickly befriends that person. He runs the blog Oedipus House of Death
Tropes associated With Kobalos
- Grey and Gray Morality: How Kobalos views the world.
- Shrinking Violet: Said that he was somewhat shy. He's very shy.
- Unperson: What the Blind Man did to him.
A tomboyish teenage girl who finds herself drawn into confrontation with a certain smiling gentleman. She writes The Jeanette Experience.
- Action Girl
- Asexuality: It's mentioned a few times that Jeanette considers herself this.
- Badass Longcoat
- Cool Hat
- Eyepatch of Power: After the Smiling Man cuts out her eye.
- Have I Mentioned I'm Asexual Today?
- Knife Nut: Her other weapon of choice, specifically a buck knife. She even uses it to kill Jack of Thorns.
- Insistent Terminology: Almost always refers to the Smiling Man as "it".
- Leitmotif: According to Penny, it's Girl With One Eye
- Revolvers Are Just Better: Her weapon of choice is a Colt Anaconda.
- Tomato in the Mirror: Turns out, ever since her fight with Smiley, Jeanette's been one of his proxies.
- Tomboy: One of her hobbies was hunting with her dad.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: There are hints of this with her and Tara.
Author of Runneth Over. She's part of the group that supposedly gave the Smiling Man form. She's not exactly stable. Has recently joined up with Jeanette, her sister, and Tara.
- Blind Seer: What she likes to think of herself as. It's still unclear as to how much of a seer she really is. Though she is definitely blind.
- Eye Scream: According to her, her eyes were burned from their sockets by the Smiling Man.
- Handicapped Badass: Manages to kill a proxy with a shotgun without being able to see him.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: So far, all we really know about Penny's real name is that it is six letters long.
- Troll: Has been known on occasion to troll Jeanette.
Real name: Archibald Donald Sullivan, Junior. Author of In The Shuffling Madness. An old man who maintains a collaborative archive of collected information on the Fears, until his study of them draws their attention and he is forced to become a Runner.
- Dead Little Sister: Dead wife, Camper-possessed daughter, and missing son, more accurately.
- Determined Defeatist
- Meaningful Name: He took the name of that particular Jethro Tull song for a reason. According to EAT, the name is more important than he realized.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: "Archibald" is too close to "Archie", and "Mister Sullivan" is a little stuffy when you're Running with the guy.
- Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior!: "And you will have to pardon my bluntness. When a man my age sees death approaching as relentlessly as mine is, they cease caring about the opinions of whiny, pretentious bitches..."
- Sour Supporter: To Runners in general and the Waterman trio in particular.
- Tomato in the Mirror: According to Thaddeus, he's Indisen. Though what exactly this might mean is not yet clear, given what Indisen means in OH GOD THE RAPTURE IS BURNING, it can't be good.
Author of Something Generic. She promises, she's not important. Ignore the hell out of her.