The first few paragraphs of Pedro Páramo by Juan Rulfo:
I came to Comala because I had been told that my father, a man named Pedro Páramo, lived there. It was my mother who told me. And I had promised her that after she died I would go see him. I squeezed her hands as a sign I would do it. She was near death, and I would have promised her anything. “Don’t fail to go see him,” she had insisted. “Some call him one thing, some another. I’m sure he will want to know you.” At the time all I could do was tell her I would do what she asked, and from promising so often I kept repeating the promise even after I had pulled my hands free of her death grip.
Still earlier she had told me:
“Don’t ask him for anything. Just what’s ours. What he should have given me but never did. . . . Make him pay, son, for all those years he put us out of his mind.”
“I will, Mother.”
I never meant to keep my promise. But before I knew it my head began to swim with dreams and my imagination took flight. Little by little I began to build a world around a hope centered on the man called Pedro Páramo, the man who had been my mother’s husband. That was why I had come to Comala.