We taught Gavin twenty-questions on the trip to Portland. He doesn’t enjoy guessing quite as much as he enjoys being questioned.
“So, it’s a human?”
“Like a real human, or an imaginary human from a book or a movie?”
“Is it a girl?”
“Is she a good guy or a bad guy?”
Long pause. “She’s a good guy, but she doesn’t always make good choices.”
That’s actually one of my favorite sentences ever. She’s a good guy, but she doesn’t always make good choices. Well, who does? One of the reasons we enjoy villains and antiheroes so much is that they’re more like us. Most of them aren’t diabolical. Most of them just make poor choices. They run out of resources. They’re lazy, and being good takes so much energy. Rapscallions turn the story.
We aren’t drawn to darkness. That’s not how it works. We’re drawn to the story. And the story doesn’t live with the hero. The story lives with the conflict.