The time has come, my son. You must choose a card and read there the fate of the children of men.
No, Master, no! For I am not as the children of men and I am forbidden to look upon my fate.
Nevertheless you shall choose a card and you shall abide by its decree, be it for damnation or for glory.
No, Master, no, I cannot, for I am odd and strange and not like the children of men. I will be turned from their door and left to die in the wilderness.
Nevertheless you must go, for your fate has been chosen. You will go to your mother’s people. They will not welcome you, but for her sake they will make room for you, and they will allow you to feed the pigs and the cattle and the elephants.
No, Master, no, I cannot! For they will say I am one with the beasts, for my father was a beast.
Nevertheless you will live among them and you will bow your head and tug your forelock. You will learn their tongue and their ways, and you will die among them, as your fate has been chosen and so you must go.
No, Master, no, do not make me do this evil thing. For I am not as the children of men and I am forbidden to walk among them. If my fate is to tend pigs, then let them be your pigs, my master. If I must sleep among the elephants, let them be your pigs, my beloved master. For I have sworn to serve you all my days, and I will not break my word. I will not go against the curse that binds me.
Nevertheless you will go, my son, for fate has decreed your path. If you seek to defy it, much evil and grief will accrue around you, and yet you will not escape.
No, Master, no, for I see now that you are testing me. You threaten me with misfortune and damnation so that fear may guide my choice.
This is no test, my son. You must go, as the card has decreed. You chose it freely and you must abide by what it says. But you do not know what that path is. You do not know where it leads. You must walk it, will or no, to the end, but you do not know where or when that end comes. Any man’s eye may see that you are not as the children of men. One requires no inner sight to discern the harm they intend. But even the wisest seer who ever lived could not discern the nature of your path, whether for good or for evil. Many is the worthy man who has taken heart in the darkest of times and found his path from the pigsty to the palace. Many is the worthy man who finds love and joy and worthwhile service beyond the cart of elephant dung.
No, Master, no! I cover my ears from your evil tongue. First you threaten me, now you tempt me. I will not listen. I will not go.
Foolish boy! Have you given these many years to me, learning at my feet by the fire, only to reject me now when you most need my advice? I tell you, you cannot change this path. Embrace it willingly, follow it with all your heart, and you may yet find your joy. Run if you, will, but I tell you, it will find you in the end and your fall will be great, your misery eternal. Do you understand?
No, Master, no! Some demon has taken you. Some evil creature speaks through your beloved mouth and shines hard in your beloved eyes. I shall free you, Master, as I free myself!
Master? Master? Why do you not reply? Where have you gone, my Master, my Beloved?