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Quotes / Arc Number

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Here's something you can do, if you ever get the mood. Find a Dragaeran who isn't inclined to beat you up, and start talking about magic. Watch the curl of his lip when he hears about witchcraft. Then start discussing numbers associated with the art. Talk about how, with some spells, you want two black candles and one white one, other times you want two white ones and no black. Mention that, for instance, in one of the simpler love spells you must use three pinches of rosemary. The size of a "pinch" doesn't matter, but the number three is vital. In another spell you can tell him, you must speak in lines of nine syllables, although what you say doesn't matter. Long about this time, he'll be unable to hide his contempt and he'll start going on about how silly it is to attach significance to numbers.

That's when you get to have your fun. Cock your head to the side, stare at him quizzically, and say, "Why is the Dragaeran population broken up into seventeen Great Houses? Why are there seventeen months in the Dragaeran year? Why is seventeen times seventeen the minimum time for a House to hold the throne and the Orb, while the maximum is three thousand something, or seventeen times seventeen times seventeen? Why are there said to be seventeen Great Weapons?"

He will open his mouth and close it once or twice, shake his head, and say, "But seventeen is the mystical number."

Now you can nod wisely, your eyes twinkling, say, "Oh, I see," and walk away.

— Key to decrypting HD-DVD, posted everywhere online May 2007

The numbers are bad!

EB: ok, we have 10 minutes and 25 seconds.
GG: hmmmm i wonder what the significance of that number is
EB: why would it be significant?
EB: numbers don't always need to have significance!
GG: but they usually do!
John Egbert and Jade Harley, Homestuck

Do you know the number of candles?
Seven and Seven and Seven. This is the number. You are the number. Seven is the number of candles. Seven the chains that weigh your mind. Seven the scars that will never heal. Seven the stains that mark your soul. The price you have paid to come this far... No. You cannot think of that. You must find the name.
— "Seeking Mr. Eaten's name", Fallen London


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