Every family has its dark secrets. Our family is no exception.
But our secret is very dark. Darker than most. In fact it is black. Jet black, the blackest true black, as black as the velvet lining of your violin case.
Anyway maybe you don't know but the Baby Belle family now has only two known living daughters. They are Blue Umbrella, the blue-eyed candy milker, and Belle Pepper, my mother.
My mother has only been bred once and she had me and my brother. We were born right after the original Baby Belle died, and I became Baby Belle Jr. My brother went to live with an artist. He lives in a sumptuous goat shed with a copper roof and diamond-paned casement windows. If Martha Stewart ever does a magazine issue on goat sheds his shed will be on the cover. Our shed will be on the "DON'Ts" page if they have that. I don't think they will have that page, though. Who wants to see Tara with the flapping roof and the chewed up siding boards (it wasn't me) and the mile-high Goatberry Mountain. There are never any berries in Martha Stewart Living. Not that kind. That's why they invented Photoshop.
Anyway I got off track. My mother had me. And she was never bred again. The reason was supposedly that she did not have a good udder. But really in reality I think she was too dear. She is the dearest goat, and what if she should be bred and something should happen. There are only two Baby Belle daughters left. But anyway for public consumption the official reason was that she did not have a very good udder.
Every year when she came in heat my mother would go to the farmer and volunteer to be bred. "I don't think so," the farmer would say. "Maybe next year."
And so on. I am five years old and I have never had any other brothers and no sisters at all. Not a single one.
"Wait a minute," you are probably asking, "not even one?"
No. The answer was always no. Until the dark secret.
--- lunchtime, part 2 tomorrow --