A high shadow detached itself from the whole territory of shadows. Like a tree of darkness felled from the darkness around it, the shape loomed out at them, gargantuan, ten Lorettas tall, horned and bearded in the manner of a goat, upright in the manner a man. The distinct clop of a hoof, magnified to a boom, sounded as the form stepped forth.
The pig cried out the cry of horror-recognition, squealed and back-trotted, flinging the colour-emanations from his eyes in barbs and whiplashes. Loretta’s fingers dug into the pig’s bristly nape with instinctual terror, yet with the urge to fight too.
The pig finally managed to articulate that monosyllable rather than merely squeal and cry, hooves back-clacking in the dark.
‘No, no, no, not you, not you…’
Something clicked in the pig’s throat and then he groaned. The colours from his eyes settled into their cascade again, though he trembled.
Loretta made to sooth-hush the pig when the giant goat thing spoke.
‘Fear not,’ it said to the small company crouched before it and its huge wit-slitted eyes flamed a little in all that dark. The colours listing out from the pig’s own eyes broke upon the dark goat, but illumined its vast form not at all.
The embered eyes of the goat descended and enlarged. It squatted over them now. The impulse to scatter was strong, but the basso profundo of the goat’s voice had spelled them to the spot, immovable.
The eyes turned themselves directly upon the pig. He felt the heat of them and shivered. It was the hotness not of temperature but of attention.
‘Your goat officemate, oh pig,’ the great goat said in an expansive and explanatory tone that surprised them, and they were held inside the cadences and scarce-guessed meanings of its subsequent speech, ‘he was just an impostor who got into your head and through your head into, and even above, the cosmos. You saw his mega-parsec horns and eyes and teeth rising above the event horizon of existence? He is a chimera of your devising. I on the other hand, I am the Zygoat. Yes, I am both embryonic and frisky, as my name suggests. I am the jump-point to all ontic antics (for all quanta are alive and kicking in the end – do you not feel them bump you back?), butting and birthing as I leap. I am not the jump off point into the abyssal dismissal. No, I am not the destruction-goat, the Null-Goat, as you imagined when you saw me here in the dark, as your goat officemate pretended to be when he thought to casually murder a computer girl-ghost in his heart. Yes, yes, I know of it. But more importantly, I know of the third goat, the Scape-Goat, who has made the way for my frolics and seminations with his own throat-spilt blood, the way for all of us. You are worried because you have heard that the goats go off to perdition, and it is true. But those particular fauna-hides are only their parabolic guises. (Recall that the holy Tabernacle was covered in goat skins too, oh you little-faiths!) It was the same way with you, dear pig. You were emblematic of impurity until the Scape-Goat Lamb-God bled on you and made you delicious, beloved, clean, included. I, the left-handed goat, in the same way became acceptable and accepted. So it is that I, Zygoat, am the archangel (each one of us is called the archangel, fear not for Michael’s glory). I am guardian of embryos, individual as well as cosmic. You have weirdly entered a weird back entrance into my weirded realm of fractal matrices. You are welcome. It will probably kill you to be here. That is good. We have only good-death here. Should you be rejected, you will be ejected only into old-life. Your good-death will then have to wait, hopefully not forever. Pig, I will now take the colour-emissions from your eyes. The dark will be its own light to you here, dear pilgrims. But first, you must take and eat it.’
The pilgrims began to do so.