- Alternative Character Interpretation:
- Does the Daemon care about the heartless troop, at least a little? He has a few Pet the Dog moments, but he's so stoic and strict that it's hard to say whether he views them as tools, colleagues, unusually decent humans, or something else altogether. Dee even debates this one In-Universe.
- You could also make a case that he deliberately avoids getting emotionally attached to his charges, since it's confirmed that they don't always make it. God knows how many kids he's seen die.
- Who did Cora have killed, and why?
- A few readers have pointed out that Dee's reaction to Gremma and a few other girls she meets (most notably, the girl she meets at the party early on) could be interpreted as attraction. Her discomfort around men at the start of the story adds to this, though given her relationship with James, she's obviously not a lesbian — but she could be bisexual.
- Most of the readership agrees that the Daemon has some affection for Dee by the story's end — but is it platonic? Fatherly? Romantic? The fact that he's so hard to get a read on, and he apparently doesn't know much about human relationships (nor does he care to learn) makes it difficult to say.
- For those who believe his feelings are romantic — does Dee return it at all? She's very much in love with James, but she also notes how attractive the Daemon is. Is this simply an objective statement, or something more?
- Fanfic Fuel: What other deals have demons made? What were the previous members of the heartless troop like? How did the Daemon figure out he could use heartless humans in the first place? What will happen to Dee and the others after the story ends? What will happen the next time the Daemon needs heartless humans?
- Heartwarming Moments:
- The very last line. When Dee is asked whether or not she thinks humans would honestly risk their lives for the greater good, she reflects on all the selflessness, kindness, and beauty she's seen over the course of the story, and replies with a confident, "Yes. I do."
- The fact that Riley, who was kicked out by her own parents for being trans, ends the story living happily ever after with Gremma, a girlfriend that adores her, and has new friends who accept her exactly as she is.
- James loving Dee so much, he literally gives up his heart for her, killing him but allowing her to go free.
- The few hints we get that the Daemon really does care about the kids, Dee in particular.
- Obvious Crossover Method: The way demons work in this world makes them fit seamlessly into any previously non-magical setting. Now all your favorite characters can trade their body parts away for a wish!
- The Woobie:
- Dee. Her father treats her like absolute crap, and if she doesn't find a way to pay for school, she'll be forced to return to him with no visible way out. No wonder she gets desperate enough to make a deal. She also counts as a Stoic Woobie, since she very rarely expresses outward distress. Even Gremma, her closest friend, has no idea how awful her home life is at first.
- Riley is this, combined with Iron Woobie. Even being thrown out by her own parents, the people you should be able to count on to love you no matter what, won't destroy her flippant, devil-may-care attitude.
YMMV / The Hearts We Sold