A good sacrifice cuts right to the heart. And I don’t mean a blood sacrifice (for those of you that know I wrote a book based on the Maya). I mean when someone takes the blame or the pain for someone they care about. If it’s done right – I’ll be a fan forever.
Ever since my kids’ school installed Pet Day every June (And no I’m not holding any resentment against them for this. Really.), my kids have wanted a pet. They were fine and dandy before. My daughter is allergic to cats and dogs, so typical pets were out of the question.
They had pet rocks. (Didn’t really work that well.) When they suggested outrageous pets like snakes or sharks, it was an easy, “No.” And it was a topic of conversation I avoided.
Ah, but then my son. He persisted. And he was polite. He asked and asked and asked. He got books out at the libary on gerbils. He became an expert. Hey, his friend had a couple gerbils, so he had it on good word, that gerbils were good pets.
But, I persisted I said, “No way!”
And then a friend at church caught wind of my son’s desire for a gerbil (he probably put his wishes on the prayer chain). And she gave us her old gerbil cage with shavings. (Oh, yay)
And then, my husband gave in. He promised my son a gerbil by the end of the summer.
And the wonderful, supportive mother that I am said, “Fine. But I’m having nothing to do with it. I’m not touching it. I’m not cleaning out its cage. I’m not going to think it’s cute. I won’t be the one to drive to the pet store to pick it up.” (And I almost said, “And if it dies, I’ll throw a party.” But I didn’t want to scar my son forever.)
And so, we got a gerbil.
And it was the ultimate sacrifice.
And sorry, no pictures of the cute gerbil. I swore an oath not to have any pictures of rodents on my blog. Ever. (Sorry Hilary. I’m still looking forward to Nightshade City.)
What sacrifices do you remember from books? What do you think is key to making it believable?