There's quite a lot of cultural significance around the number 7. East and West. Wikipedia has a pretty comprehensive list. Seriously, check it out, it's interesting! Off the top of my head, however, it just made me think of Voldemort's seven horcruxes and VII being the number of the best Final Fantasy game.
Well, I forgot the note for a few days, until the local classic rock radio station decided, as it often does, that that day was a nice day to play Stairway to Heaven. I remembered the flier itself had a very Zeppelin-y theme, though the only thing I could really remember about it was a bit about VII/VII.
Seventh album, seventh song? I figured that if I was going to humor a crazy cultist, there are worse ways to do it than by listening to some Z.
The song in particular was "Tea for One" off of the Presence album. 9 minutes, 26 seconds. Very bluesy, one of their slower songs in fact. Very nice guitar rifts, but I chose to focus on the lyrics.
"How come twenty four hours, Baby sometimes seem to slip into days?
Oh twenty-four hours, Baby sometimes seem to slip into days
A minute seems like a lifetime, Oh baby when I feel this way
Sittin, lookin at the clock, time moves so slow
I've been watchin for the hands to move
Until I just can't look no more"
And etc. for the rest of the nine and a half minuets of the song. I tried picking letters out in a certain order. I tried to listen to the song backwards, I tried putting the lyrics in anagram engines. I picked out all the roman numerals in the lyrics and added them up. (64357 for the first three lines if you count Us as Vs). Anyway, after about three hours or so I did find a hidden meaning in the lyrics. Something that I always suspected, and was looking right at me! "Why does twenty four hours seem to slip into days?" And like Buddha when he became enlightened, it dawned on me.
Then I remembered that there were other numbers. I went down to the car, uncrumpled the paper and read again.
Anyway, at that point, I was sick of the whole thing, so tossed the note back into my car and forgot about it.
7/7/2011 came and almost went without incident. Two of my three sisters were spending a week in the area because of the Fourth and were set to go back to where they came from the next morning. They spent their last night in So-Cal attempting to out-gossip each other while my dad was vehemently arguing with his friend about the need to set up machine guns along the Mexican boarder, and my mom had already retired to bed after a bottle and a half of wine. The usual family bullshit. As the sun was setting, at about 9-ish, we heard the crash.
Everyone with enough presence of mind stumbled out into the yard where the cars were parked. Mine had just had the driver's side window smashed in. I scooped out the glass, and started searching for things that might have been stolen.
Under the driver's seat, I found another flier. It had a picture of the Hermit, just as the last one had.
This one read:
In the shadow of where the gladiators battle
Be where the compass rose points to the the story's introduction.
When the characters are introduced, the rising action can begin.
'Yes there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run, there's still time to change the road you're on.
I didn't tell my parents, and I sure as hell didn't tell the police. I had an inkling about what this was about, but I'm not one hundred percent sure.
7/14 is this Thursday. The gladiators battle at a Colosseum. I don't think they expect me to show up in Italy in three days, so I guessed they meant the one in LA.
And sure enough, right in the shadow, right on the same block:
Exposition, rising action, climax, denouement. And they say you never use what you learn in High School in real life! The problem is, the stuff you tend to find at the climax is never pleasant. But, either way, I'm going. Just to check it out. Just out of curiosity. And AJ won't stop me. She's had enough of this eldritch bullshit to last a dozen lifetimes.
It wasn't until I met AJ that I learned that "Curiosity killed the cat" is only half a cliche. "Satisfaction brought it back." she'd say in response. And I'll be satisfied enough if I can find someone to pay for my window!