Balthazar may think heroes are a dime a dozen, but I guess that means he doesn't really understand the concept of what a hero is. Let me start by saying I don't consider myself any sort of hero. I'm a Wizard of the Light Magic. I was called to protect the natural world with my spark.
I've seen glimpses of what Balthazar desires for the natural world, and to me, that's just something I'm pretty sure the natural world would not appreciate very much. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think you want to live in a world where the dead magic reigns supreme - even if it only lasts for a century - or even a year.
So, I don't do what I do because I'm any sort of hero. I have no delusions about my role in the eternal war. As long as there is no way to stop it - and believe me, I've looked for one - then I have to accept the fact that I am but the latest in possibly a long line of wizards. I am not the first, and I likely will not be the last. I will do what I have to do to keep the natural world safe as long as I am a wizard, and I will make whatever sacrifice I have to make to ensure darkness does not overwhelm the natural world on my watch.
I don't think that makes me any sort of hero. I am one of the few people who have the power to keep something bad from happening where magic is concerned, and so that's what I choose to do. It's simply a matter of having the courage to do what is right.
Want to read more about Nikko? Check out Rise of the Dead Magic in paperback or e-book.