The incident that was relayed to me took place approximately in the year 1981 in the Iona, Idaho area while David was playing at the home of a childhood friend. The boys would have been right around ten years old. David’s friend had a handheld electronic game that was extremely popular at the time called Merlin by Parker Brothers. Many of you that are around my age or older, probably remember the game and the TV commercials that advertised it.
At some point while playing with the game, the boys became bored and set it aside to just talk about whatever it is a couple of young lads might discuss. At some point, David—and for no particular reason—decided to punch in the number 666 into the keypad on the Merlin game. I imagine that whatever conversation they were having may have lead to this decision. The game did not respond, however.
Not to be one to give up quite so easily, David tried once again to feed the biblical number into the device. Again, Merlin was having none of it, and remained silent to this input from the young boy. David says that he made a few more attempts, not really knowing what he was thinking or why he would try such a thing. Each time he tried this, the little machine gave zero response.
His friend, growing nervous—apparently a smarter kid than David—started asking for the game, saying that he wanted to put it away. But before handing the Merlin over to his friend, David gave it one more attempt, punching the infamous number into the game, expecting the same results as before.
This time however, and for no apparent reason—I like to think it might have been the sixth attempt—the Merlin suddenly came to life in a flurry of beeps, screeches, and high-pitched tones. It lasted a few seconds, and in David’s own words, it seemed as if the game were somehow screaming directly at him in anger and rage.
When the Merlin fell silent again David and his friend were very afraid. And although the game shook in his trembling fingers, David just had to know, so he punched in the three sixes a final time. The game remained silent. The boys looked at each other, eyes the size of teacups, each feeling that what they had just experienced was something that went beyond just a coincidental malfunction of a toy.
Not having any more of it, David’s friend took the Merlin from him and went to put it away.
To this day, the memory remains with David as a terrifying and vivid reminder that it is definitely not wise to play around with such things. The moral of the story:
Toying around with The Number of The Beast is no game.
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