Excited Delirium Book: Chapter 61 (Garamond on 888)
Author’s Note: The following is Chapter 61 of the my online book "Excited Delirium". Please post comments. Please tell your friends about this story. If you’ve missed a chapter, please click here for Chapter 1 (Prelude) or here for the full index
August 7, 2008
“If I’m guilty of one sin, it’s my love of Arithmomancy,” Garamond exclaimed to Hadlock as he swirled a glass of 18 year-old Lagavulin scotch. They were on their way from the airport to the OMNINet building and were driving over the 59th Street Bridge. The two were reclining in the back of their custom-made Mercedes limousine, stocked with booze, entertainment, and leather seats.
“Whatever you say, sir,” Hadlock whispered sarcastically under his breath. Before Garamond could ask what he had said, Simon spoke up, “I’m not sure I know what you mean.”
“Some say that Arithmomancy, or numerology to most other people, is akin to witchcraft, but I think God was a great fan of numbers and math because they are everywhere.”
“Do you mean ‘is’?” Hadlock suggested.
“Of course. Of course,” Garamond said, mildly acknowledging his mistake.
“Speaking of numbers, we should discuss the allocation of our deposits with the Central Banks of Indonesia and Morocco. They are quite anxious to make sure that they have taken care of all of our requirements, given that we’ve transferred the economic equivalent of about half of the world’s GDP.”
“All in good time, Simon,” Garamond interrupted. “Allow me a few moments of peace before we talk about our wealth. Allow me this moment to do my monologue, if you don’t mind.”
“No problem,” Hadlock said, as he leaned back in his seat and smiled. “I think I was asking you about … what was it? Artistocracy?”
“Arithmomancy. The etymology comes from the combination of the Greek word arithmos , which means “number”, and manteia , which means “divination”. It is an art that has been practiced by every known society to man because it offers clues to how God’s mind works, although we would never dare to assume that level of hubris.”
“Numbers are a part of everything that surrounds us, Simon,” Garamond continued, without letting his President interrupt.
“The Bible is complete with numbers. What’s the most famous number that you can think of from the Bible?” Garamond asked somewhat rhetorically.
“John 3:16. From the football games.”
“OK. For you sports fanatics, I’ll give you that. But I’m talking about something much more sinister: the number 666, for example.”
“Of course, the number that we use with all OMNINet barcodes.”
“Yes, that and the number of the Beast, you oaf,” Garamond said, knowing that Hadlock was teasing him.
Before Hadlock could respond, Garamond continued, “The Number of the Beast was revealed to us by John of Patmos in his Revelations , book 66 of the Bible, in Chapter 13, verse 18. 13, which is a number of ill-repute, and 18, which is 6 plus 6 plus 6. It’s not a coincidence.”
“Some have said that the numerological value for George W. Bush is 666. Is that true?”
“Of course it is,” Garamond responded quickly.
“Take now, the number 8,” Garamond continued. “Using what’s called gematria, or the study of the numeric value of words, in Greek, our Saviour Jesus Christ has a numerical value of 8, which is the number of perfection.”
“In fact, most words associated with Christ are a multiple of 8, including Lord, Christ, Truth, Saviour and Way.
“It’s incredible. It really is,” Hadlock said, giving Garamond a chance to pause to take a sip of his scotch and wipe the condensation off the glass before it dripped on his $2,000 pair of pants.
“There’s a lot more than that. We know that on the sixth day, God created man, but God also created the beast, which is why the number six is associated with Satan and his works. By default, we have the mind of the beast. We have sinned, and we can rise above our label is we accept the Lord. It’s all about change, you see.”
“I think so. But isn’t the number 7 the number of perfection, not 8?” Hadlock, genuinely curious about where this was going.
“Seven is heaven, but eight is great,” Garamond said with a sneer, proud of his rhyme that a 6-year old could have made up.
He continued: “Eight is an exceptionally holy number because it represents infinity. The two loops whirl together and form an unending continuum. A new week begins on the eighth day, as does the octave in music. God created eight planets that orbit the sun.”
Not waiting for Hadlock to say anything, he continued, “in our religion, the rebirth, as demonstrated by the Baptism, is almost always performed on the 8th day after birth and the ceremonies are performed in 8-sided pools. This is done to reflect the original eight, the passengers on Noah’s Ark who went through the most potent cleansing that God ever brought to His Earth, but to also reflect the perfection of God himself.”
“As fate would have it, the Olympics are scheduled to open on a trinity of eights,” Hadlock commented, trying to sound as casual as possible.
“Very well put, Simon. Translators say that the Mandarin equivalent of ‘prosperity’, ‘luck’ and ‘wealth’ all sound similar to the number eight. They also claim that in their pagan mythologies, that there were eight original divinities that brought civilization to their world.”
“What must not be lost in all of this is that is seems the Chinese have fallen for God’s great plan to bring about retribution on the Eighth of August in 2008,” Garamond stated matter-of-factly. “What they don’t know is that in our religion, the number 8 represents a new beginning, the omega if you will, that will translate to a new era of wealth and stability for all of us.”
“Would you say it’s their destiny to be ruined by the true believers?” Hadlock asked.
“I would say that it’s their bad luck to suffer the fate that we’ll bring to them, all in the name of God,” was all Garamond would say as he looked out the window with a glazed look in his eyes. “Their bad luck indeed.”
(Note: "Excited Delirium" is a work of fiction. Any person, place or thing depicted in this work of fiction is also a work of fiction. Any relation of these subjects or characters to real locations, people or things are an unintentional coincidence.)
Excited Delirium by Liam Young is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License .
Based on a work at www.exciteddelirium.ca .