The 616 Diaries: Entry 4 by Kevin Kauffmann
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September 3rd, 2019, 8:05 AM

So Andrew wasn’t too happy about me saying all that stuff about him in the last post.

He didn’t tell me to take it down, but he did strongly imply that the next time I give you guys his personal details that I may have to walk around with a black eye. At first I laughed, said that it’d be funny to see him try to punch me, but he just looked me dead in the eye and said “Who said I’d punch you?”

It was three whole seconds before he started laughing and shook his head, but I know he was partially serious.

So yeah, personal details for the best friend are no longer forthcoming.

Luckily for you, however, I have actually had plenty of sightings in the last day! Pretty much as soon as I submitted the last post, I had three rapid-fire sightings. In separate spreadsheet files, even! There were a few cousins buried in there as well, though it was only one 919 and two 999s, but it still counts for something. Definitely made me feel better, especially after that last post, which is actually kinda weird. I never thought that there would come a day where I would want to see numbers associated with Hell, and that I would be disappointed when I didn’t. That development was entirely unexpected.

But compared to what happened this morning, none of that stuff really matters. See, what happened this morning had omen written all over it.

Sooo… it shouldn’t come at a surprise that I wake up at 6:16 AM most mornings now. Or I’ll be awake by the time it happens, at least. Something just happens in my brain and I wake up, and it doesn’t even matter what I’m thinking about, but eventually I’ll turn over and look at my clock just at the right time. In the darkness the red of the digital display seems especially sinister—demonic, even—but the number doesn’t make me scared, or make me feel like it’s trying to hurt me. It almost brings… comfort.

Man, just looking at that last paragraph makes me wonder if this is healthy. I mean, feel like it’s trying to hurt me? That makes it sound like the number is… I don’t know, sentient. I’d delete this, rewrite the entry, but that almost feels dishonest. No matter what I write about it, it doesn’t change how it feels, and it does feel like there’s something more than just a number behind it now. I’m probably just placing too much emphasis on it, caring too much about it because it’s my new, little passion project, but I just… it just seems like I’m supposed to be paying attention to it.

And what happened this morning only cements that opinion. When I woke up at 6:16, I couldn’t go back to sleep. Renee was sleeping over, and I’ve always had trouble trying to go to sleep when she’s around. It’s not because I don’t love her or anything, or that I don’t enjoy cuddling with her at night or in the early morning, but I get all self-conscious about sleeping when she’s nearby. It’s already hard enough for me to sleep, but when there’s another person in the bed? Forget it. I start worrying about how loud I’m breathing, how much I’m shaking the bed or moving her when I twitch or do something small.

She’s told me over and over again that she’s a heavy sleeper, that it doesn’t matter and that if she does somehow wake up that she’ll go right back to sleep, but it changes nothing for me. If I’m awake and she’s not, I’m probably not sleeping that night.

So when I woke up this time, I decided that there wasn’t a point to trying to catch another couple hours before work. Waking up at 6:16 made it worse—since it made me all excitable, too—so instead of closing my eyes I sat up and put my feet on the carpet. Luckily, I have the carpet since it gets chilly, but this time it gave me a small static shock once my feet touched the floor.

I thought that was odd, not sure how I could build up a charge while I’m just lying in bed, but it was a mundane little detail. Could happen anytime. The only reason I remember it so vividly is because what came before and after. Before, obviously, I woke up with the “Devil’s Alarm Clock.”

When I walked over to my computer and booted it up, though, that’s when things turned weird.

So a little backstory, I like to play games on my computer a lot, because why wouldn’t I? It’s cheaper, and it’s pretty well-established that I can’t stop being a nerd for five seconds. Especially during the sales, a lot of the indie titles are sold for less than half price and I’ve built quite a collection over the years. Lately I’ve been playing an action/platformer game that I really enjoy with cartoony graphics, but really good gameplay. Has this mechanic that you can shoot stuff onto the screen, it multiplies once you hit them, and then this whirlwind of projectiles becomes the major way that you attack.

When the computer started up this morning, I grabbed my controller and started up the game. Within a few minutes I got to the point where I unlocked a power based on electricity. At that point I didn’t remember the static shock I got on my feet or even that I had just woken up at such an ominous time. That was already in the background of my head. When I started playing the game, I was just having fun wasting time before Renee woke up and I could cuddle with her and not feel guilty about it.

However, when I used the electricity for the first time, I remembered everything.

Because this game? This game has a thing where all the damage you do is displayed on the screen, and because it has that projectile mechanic where everything multiplies, the computer monitor becomes just a wall of numbers. It looks a little chaotic, but the numbers fade quickly, overlap a lot, and—just in case you didn’t figure it out—I like watching numbers. Long story just a little shorter, my damage output was 16146 for each little spark. And like I said, the numbers overlapped a lot.

I saw about fifty 616s in forty seconds.

“But Ray,” you say, “as crazy as that is, it’s just one instance of a number that would obviously create your personal Number of the Beast!” Well, you probably wouldn’t since nobody talks like that, but the point stands. This is a total confirmation bias sort of moment, but it’s not even the amount of 616 sightings that makes this story so eerie and strange to me.

It’s the whole thing. It’s the waking up at 6:16 AM and deciding I couldn’t sleep. It’s the static shock I got when I put my feet on the carpet, even though that doesn’t usually happen. It’s that I decided to play that game at that time at that checkpoint, which allowed me to get that electricity power. It’s that that power was able to chain lightning and chain the numbers so that a number that doesn’t have 616 in it was able to create dozens of iterations in less than a minute.

Yeah, I know this all sounds like crazy talk. I already talked to Andrew about it since I had to, and he wasn’t even nice about it. That probably had more to do with me calling him at 6:30 in the morning—he usually doesn’t wake up til 11—but I’m sure that to him it sounded like I was insane.

I’m sure because he said so.

But it’s not nothing. It can’t be. There have been other times where I saw a 616 and I thought, “yeah, that could be something dark at work,” but I could always explain it away without an issue. I don’t even believe in the Devil, or God, or really anything out there. I’ve always been the science nerd who thinks atheism is a lot more reasonable.

This time, though… that’s a lot of coincidences. Andrew couldn’t argue it away, though I could hear him thinking up excuses and just being too annoyed to explain them, but I can think up the exact same excuses, I’m sure. It’s easy; it’s just probability and chance and a whole bunch of stuff I’m linking together that I shouldn’t. It is not rational to believe or argue that all of this stuff it connected.

But part of me is really starting to think it is.

I feel like this blog is going to get a lot more nuts the longer I keep at it, but we’ll see. It might just all be a fluke, and I can return to my nice, normal, boring life soon.

If I want to, I guess.




Starting to get interesting, right? Next twists and turns in the next one!