Friday, December 8, 2017

The Nature of a Hero, by Guest Blogger, Beth Wallin

Greetings, Nineteen Teen readers. Mrs. Scott asked me to stop by and opine on the nature of a hero. I think she’s hoping I’ll tell you everything about my brother, Levi Wallin, who is the hero in her December release, His Frontier Christmas Family. Levi thought himself quite the hero when we were growing up. You never heard such bragging! To hear him tell it, he could shoot the farthest, chop down trees the fastest, and capture the most hearts of any fellow for miles around. Silly! Our brother John can shoot the farthest (and I rival him for accuracy), our oldest brother Drew holds the record for number of trees felled in a certain amount of time, and middle brother James has probably captured more hearts than the rest of my brothers combined.

And really, are those traits what make a hero?

I think a hero should be known by the quality of his character and the depth of his sacrifice for others. Take Drew, for example. He’s the quiet sort, when he isn’t bellowing orders to his logging crew or demanding that the rest of us fall into line. But he took over the family when Pa died, and Drew was only 18! He was more of a father to me than brother. He never thought of himself, only us. Talk about character and sacrifice.
I don’t think Levi sees himself that way. Certainly he didn’t when he ran off to seek his fortune. Gold. Fah! I quite agree with Callie that such riches are fleeting. Still, I can’t blame Levi for being caught by the lure. Thousands of men are drawn away every year by tales of strikes in the mountains. It’s just that he came back different. The Levi who left was brass, all shine and easily tarnished. The Levi who returned is silver, refined and softened.

Something happened to him on the gold fields. He won’t tell us what. I’m hoping Callie can pry it out of him. He simply must tell her the truth if they’re to make a match of it.

There! I said it. I’d like to see the two of them marry. They truly are perfect for each other. Levi has been to the gold fields, so he understands better than I ever will how Callie grew up, what shaped her, what scares her even now. And Callie is so very practical. Have you seen those trousers she wears? Why didn’t I think of that? Far more useful for mucking stalls and chasing deer. Of course, I’d never give up my dresses, but once in a while …

Levi has hero potential. His character has deepened since he left. He’s willing to sacrifice to bring Callie, her twin brothers, and her infant niece to Wallin Landing, making a place for them in his home. He’s now an ordained minister. Callie has a real chance of winning his heart. She just needs a little help, and I know exactly what to do.

I only wish I knew what to do about a certain lawman. But that’s a story for another time.

I understand you may need these, so here you go. And I look forward to seeing you again in March, for Frontier Matchmaker Bride.

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