Subject: OM-003 – The Hungering Woods
Threat Level: Majoris
Description: OM-003 is an expanse of temperate deciduous forest covering approximately 700,000 square kilometers of ++++++++++++ second largest continent between the port city of ++++++++++ and the planet’s capitol.
A single six-lane highway passes through the woods to connect the two cities. No other forms of human infrastructure or habitation exist within the boundaries of the woods. The highway is the only safe route through the woods. Those who attempt to pass through by other means are never seen again. This has led to the rise of a number of local superstitions and folktales centered around the woods and what might dwell at its heart.
The following is an interview with one of the planet’s locals.
Transcript: Interview of ++++++++
Interviewer: Interrogator ++++++++++
Forward: +++++++++ is a local of ++++++++++++, 65 years old standard, and lives approximately 1.5 km from the edge of the woods. The following is a testimony based on +++++++++’s living in such close proximity of the forest.
Interviewer: They say if you leave the road, you’re never seen again. Can you explain this?
Interviewee: Means what it means. Leave the highway, and the forest takes you.
Interviewer: How does the forest take you?
Interviewee: Don’t rightly know. Just that anyone that leaves the road never gets seen again.
Interviewer: No one?
Interviewee: No one. Never even found so much as a corpse before. It’s like the forest just absorbs them. Writes them right out of existence.
Interviewer: Is that what happened to your wife?
[There is a significant pause]
Interviewer: Can you tell me what happened?
[There is another lengthy silence]
Interviewee: We were coming back from ++++++++++++ after selling our citrata harvest at the port. A cargo-18 coming the other way blew a tire and lost its load. The trailer jack-knifed across the highway. Couldn’t avoid it. Sent us spinning into the guard rail. The car partially jumped it. I saw the passenger side door come free. +++++++++ weren’t wearing her seatbelt. She fell out and off the highway. My head hit the steering wheel and I blacked out.
Interviewer: How long were you out?
Interviewee: Dunno. When I came too there were DFS agents pulling me from the wreck. I asked about +++++++++, if they’d seen her. I got no response. That’s how I knew.
Interviewer: Did they search for her?
Interviewee: Just long enough to say they tried.
Interviewer: How long ago was the accident?
Interviewee: Forty-seven years ago.
According to records provided by the local Department of Forestry Services, at the time of initial human settlement on the world at the end of 399.M38, the woods encompassed only 6,800 square kilometers. In the first decade of human settlement, the forest exploded to cover an area of 80,000 square kilometers. Yearly tabulations undertaken since then show consistent growth if left unchecked. This has led Governor +++++++++ to commission the DFS, placing under their mantle of responsibility culling the forest’s expansion with biannual burns, as well as the investigation of any accidents or disappearances related to the woods.
Recently, a sample of a tree from the woods belonging to genus +++++++++ species +++++++++ has come into the hands of biologis team ++++++++. Research is still ongoing, but preliminary results suggest the tree does not photosynthesize as normal plant life might. Examination of some of the leaves has revealed traces of mammalian blood in the veins. It is as of yet undetermined if this blood is human in origin.
The DFS has since been transferred to Ordo control. OM-003 remains under constant surveillance.