“First, let me introduce myself. I have been called many names and many terms throughout my existence. My work has been known since the beginning of recorded history and I will affect everyone one day, including you! In fact, my work will touch millions of lives today alone! I won’t bore you with my official name since it’s too long but you can call me by the name that most everyone calls me by. You can call me Death.
“I know what you’re thinking. ‘This is a weird speech! He’s crazy!’ Or maybe there are a few of you that do believe that I am Death and are getting ready to leave the building now. Let me address those concerns now by asking everyone to calm down and explain why I, Death, am actually here and why you needn’t worry. Well, for the most of you.
“Every few years we, The Holders of the Coin, hold a sacrifice. The Holders of the Coin is an ancient organization that has been around some of the more darker times in history doing our work mostly in war torn areas, usually choosing small towns to be the Sacrifice for The Holders of the Coin but other times we choose train accidents, building collapses, and, my personal favorite, natural disasters as the Sacrifice for The Holders of the Coin. Today, you are the lucky participants of the Sacrifice.
“Now, before you rush to the exits, let me tell you that there are men already stationed in every exit of this room, members of The Holders of the Coin. If anyone tries to leave, these men will make sure that you are killed promptly in the most painful way possible. You don’t want that now, do you? That’s what I thought.
“But there is good news! I am not here for all of you. Just one-quarter of you. That’s right. Just one in four or, for those of you that like to look at things in the positive light, seventy-five percent, or three in four of you will leave here with your lives. Isn’t that great!”
“I know, I know, many of you are hearing this speech, listening to a man on a microphone, reading this speech and thinking, ‘This is an interesting speech! It’s kind of spooky and some kind of scary joke, but that’s all that this is, a joke.’ As much as I am asking for you to stay calm, and please, don’t panic unless you want to meet my unpleasant friends waiting for you outside those doors, I have to stress to you; this is not a joke. This is the Sacrifice for The Holders of the Coin and you are all participants. I know I look like just another person but make no mistake, I am Death, and before this day is over, many of you that are listening to this very speech will be dead before the day is over.
“So, how does this work. Simply, really. Just outside one of the doors is what is called The Coin Room. Each and everyone of you will go into the Coin Room, at least once. About half of you will then have to go into the Coin Room a second time. After that, everything is done. Simple enough, right! So here’s how the Coin Room works.
“Each of you, one by one, will go into the Coin Room for Round One. There, a member of the Holders of the Coin will be waiting for you. You will sit down at a small table and then the Holder of the Coin will show you this, The Coin. This very coin that we have been using for thousands of years. Once you take a seat in front of the Holder of the Coin, he will flip the Coin in the air, catch it in his hand, and slam it on the table. Once he lifts his hand, you will see the result of Round One. Heads, you win. Tails, you lose. Easy enough. But what does win and lose mean, exactly?
“Well, if it lands heads, you’re done for the day. No Round Two, no death, no nothing. You are free to go home, although I suggest you stay! After all, The Sacrifice of the Coin Room is entertainment if not anything else! Who will live and who will die? No one knows. What fun! But anyway, back to the subject. If you get tails, if you lose, you will then have to come back for Round Two of the Coin Room. After everyone goes first, of course.
“So, after Round One, we will have roughly split the room into fifty-fifty. Half and half. We know that half the room will live and survive the day, their day of stress over. But what about the other half? Well, that’s when things get interesting.
“Round Two is just like Round One, with everyone going through the same procedure only this time, the losers really do lose. Instead of just culling the herd, like we did in Round One, we will instead be making our final decision. This time, during Round Two, heads you win, tails…you die.
“Before we begin the ceremony let me give you an example of one of the times we did The Sacrifice for The Holders of the Coin, to give you a better example of how this works.
“Back in the late seventies and early eighties, the hemophilia community inside the United States of America was part of the sacrifice. What happened was, about half of those with hemophilia contracted HIV. And half of those, eventually died from AIDS.
“So take this time to imagine what they went through, this community of people with hemophilia. Imagine what happened to these family and friends. I want you to stop listening to me for a moment and look around at those sitting around you for a moment. Again, I’m serious, look around. Make eye contact. Go ahead. I can wait. Go on. You finished? Good.
“Maybe some of your friends and loved ones aren’t next to you but they are still in this room, listening to my words. Think about those that you care about and love and respect that are in this room, right here, right now. Do you have those people that you care and love about in your mind? Think about how much they mean to you and how much joy they have provided to you. How important they are. Now imagine that one out of every four of you died.
“Well, that’s what happened to the hemophilia community in America in the early eighties. Friends died. Brothers died. Sons died. Fathers died. But there was also something worse than death for some. Survival. Because, as you’ll soon see, every time that you or a loved one survives the Coin Room, that just means that the likelihood that someone else is going to lose inside the Coin Room goes up. Just because you live doesn’t mean you’re spared. In fact, maybe your survival, while those that you loved died, is worse than death itself. Every time you grab your son in relief that he didn’t lose inside the Coin Room, you’ll always know that someone else’s mother is not holding on to anyone.
“Well, enough talk. Let the sacrifice begin. Good luck. I will give you a few moments to talk and to hold each other for what maybe your last time. After that, the sacrifice will begin and you will all be led into the Coin Room.”