Literature: The Holders Series

The Holders series are several short stories about 538 objects which, if brought together, will cause the The End of the World as We Know It. There were originally 2538 objects, but 2000 of them were lost.

Each object is protected by a Holder, who presents a series of trials to anyone who seeks its object. Failing on any of these trials, no matter how insignificant your failure was, earns you a Fate Worse Than Death.note 

Each of the stories details the exact sequence of steps you need to retrieve one of the objects. Most of them start with you going to a specific kind of place (often a "mental institution or halfway house") and asking to speak to the Holder of the object you want. You are then guided to a hidden section of the building, where after several trials you will meet the Holder, who will only answer one question (which is different for each Holder).

Originally from the Imageboards, can be found at several places on the Internet, one of them being Another version, and the one many saw due to it being reported on Snopes, is this one, which also contains equally insane Nightmare Fuel "Easter eggs".

This series provides examples of: