1. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    Help! corner! need mc to survive fire squad!

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by DeathandGrim, Oct 13, 2015.

    I'm almost done with macroplanning a prequel series of stories to a following series. But however as I was coming up on the definitive end moments of the fourth book there's one hurdle that I can't seem to get over.

    My MC, Tonya, has to survive a firing squad. Or a death sentence of some sort.

    The Plot: Tonya is the relative newcomer of a spec ops squad of 5 Metahumans, Logan Blackwolf, Christopher Hughes, Shawn "BB" Briggs, and Ryan Kepler. They all become close friends in the previous book and Tonya even develops a secret relationship with BB (She's still kinda seen as an outsider). In this book she's forced to kill BB after she figures out he's a traitor and was selling them out to the enemy organization, Sentra.

    The leader of her spec ops organization (who's the puppetmaster in the betrayal) sends the rest of the group who discover her deed as she's grieving over her actions and worse the information she finds out from BB.

    She's brought before a hearing with General Striker, someone who hates her guts already because he believes she's killed 2 precious American soldiers years before. So with this incident he's had enough and sentences her to die by a way that her squadmates deemed fit without any trial. Which for a military squad who want to personally avenge their fallen friend, firing squad.

    During a car ride out to an abandoned forest where they planned to kill Tonya she tries to explain that the squad is being sent to die on their next mission but they're having none of it. So she feigns arrogance about the murder to her victim's best friend, Christopher, claiming she wanted to reveal his final words to him and him alone. She get's her private audience with Chris only after he viciously beats her. She reveals the vital information to him but the information doesn't get past his rage over her killing BB.

    And then they tie her up to a tree and shoot her.

    The problem is I want her to live through this and the climax but she has to somehow survive a firing squad (and a ruptured organ from the beating) but I'm not sure how to pull this one off short of Deus Ex Machina . But I'm not sure quite how to finish this one up. I'm soo close. I feel like I've watched this in movies and comics several times but I'm missing it.

    Can someone help me come up with a way to have her live?
     
  2. X Equestris
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    X Equestris Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well, first off, I'm not sure she can legally be executed without a court-martial. I'm assuming this is set in roughly modern times, correct?
     
  3. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    Yes, roughly. 2006.
     
  4. X Equestris
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    X Equestris Contributing Member Contributor

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    All right, well she can't legally be sentenced to death without a court-martial involving a panel of at least twelve military members. And the sole current method of execution for the military is lethal injection.

    So that leaves you with the general ordering an illegal execution without a trial. As far as survivability is concerned, I don't see how it's possible. The heart is usually targeted in firing squad executions, and the range is short. They won't miss. Not with modern weapons.
     
  5. Acanthophis
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    Acanthophis ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Contributor

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    Does it have to be by firing squad? Unless that specific way is crucial to the plot, you could make it a hanging, or a lethal injection gone wrong. But like Equestris said, surviving a firing squad with today's weapons at such a close range is near impossible. The chance would be so rare, I don't think I could buy it happening to an important character.
     
  6. Masked Mole
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    Masked Mole Contributing Member

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    The guns have been filled with blanks beforehand, and the person being "shot" has those bags of stage blood under his/her shirt. I expect a twenty percent cut from the sales of your book.
     
  7. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    Thank you for the information, I'm not too militarily savvy.

    While not crucial to the plot it's a personal tragedy to have such a close-nit team have a member turn on one of them and kill them. And because they're not in the know about why she does it they're all deeply hurt by it. I wanted to do an execution or punishment that would help the other members feel some sort of satisfaction out of it. If not a firing squad I'm not sure what else could honestly

    Be warned I pay in only RC Cola.
     
  8. Acanthophis
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    Acanthophis ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Contributor

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    Hmm, I guess that does make it a tricky situation. You could have it so only one of the team's rifles are loaded, so there is only one killer, but everyone knows it could possibly be themselves. It would make her survival more plausible, also. It's believable that she could survive one shot aimed at her heart (you could even have the shot miss by an inch or so), as opposed to receiving a bunch of shots all aimed at her heart.

    That's all I've got, good luck!
     
  9. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    Actually this gave me a great idea on what to do! I think you've solved it.
     
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  10. JadeX
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    JadeX Active Member

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    What if another general/colonel/officer/government official/etc. discovers the intent to perform an illegal execution and arrives on the scene to reprimand him?
     
  11. X Equestris
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    X Equestris Contributing Member Contributor

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    Technically speaking, the people he's giving the order to would have every right to refuse to carry it out, and possibly even relieve him of command. I mean, having someone executed without a trial is incredibly, incredibly illegal. With what the OP has set up, though, the people receiving the orders seem like they'd be willing to go along with him. To have any impact on him in the situation you describe, he'd probably have to be outranked. And even then I don't see him folding until he has been relieved of command.
     
  12. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    I'd say if she can't escape then go with the men relieving their commander, unless of course the men have to be loyal to their commander for the next book???

    Also when you say she was forced to kill a traitor, was does that mean? Why are these men wanting to kill her out of revenge, if their friend was a traitor to them? If I am understanding that correctly?
     
  13. Chinspinner
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    Chinspinner Contributing Member Contributor

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    I read once that they have many people in a firing squad for two reasons 1) so that no-one knows who fired the fatal shot, and 2) because a lot of people actually aim to miss in that situation. I don't know how true that is, and it would come across as farcical if everyone missed, but, it's an idea.
     
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  14. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    The spec ops group has looser ties to the military than normal. Plus, in Tonya's presence, soldiers on her side tend to come down with a case of dead, a lot. He had no concrete proof she killed two before but with hard ironclad proof she did it this time he just wanted to see her rot in the ground. There's a racism component there too

    But he doesn't actually give her a sentence, he gave the spec ops group the order to do something and they'd just write her off as KIA if ya get ma drift.

    Do you think someone would find that out still?

    She didn't join the group on good terms at all. She was actually supposed to not even be in combat and be lobotomized due to her race. However when a scientist (and partial leader of the spec ops group) pays off the doctor who was to perform the lobotomy (he needed her fully functioning and aware) things went bad when her personality was left intact. (Bad decisions, rape, revenge, and opportunity play a huge role) To keep a long story short, thanks to a dear friend, she barely got out of being "decommissioned" (for her people, a fate even worse than death) and was put in the spec ops squad on extremely thin ice. This final murder she committed looked like it followed the same patterns of the ones she had done previously and nobody was able wriggle her outta getting the book thrown at her this time.

    And then there's the fact that this squad were together for quite some time and nobody ever suspected anyone to be dirty dealing. All good friends who at first and for years after accepted her as one of them. And then then someone ends up dead again. They thought she was lying and wouldn't hear anymore of it.

    So she basically had her third strike.
     
  15. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    Okay thanks. This takes place in around 2006, in the real world you said, right? What are people doing in in the army, that they are being lobotomized do to race? Is this in the Second Gulf war, or Afghanistan, since it's suppose to be around that time?
     
  16. DeathandGrim
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    DeathandGrim Contributing Member

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    The lobotomy is for metahumans, who're considered a different race and their civil rights aren't fully established still. Much better than the start of the series in 96. When metahuman occurrences got outta hand there was a proposed way to deal with them: Project Purity. There a metahuman is lobotomized depending whether they are deemed Special Corps or not.

    A tactical board will hear their Reaver report (A report filed after a metahuman occurrence to document the event and attempt to describe their power) and a brief summary of their abilities deem their power useful in special situations (Like creating force fields or something destructive) and they're kept in line via control collars (should they try something funny) or useless, where they're lobotomized and trained as a basic soldier, an extra body to be used with perfect obedience and no recollection of their abilities; memory damage varies. The derogatory term for those deemed useless is Drone.

    Tonya drew the short straw because the hearing board did not know the true potential of Vibrokinesis and she was deemed "standard" (useless) but she was saved by a wealthy scientist who originally tried to convince the board that her power was useful, but when that failed he paid the Doctor who does the lobotomies a hefty sum to save her mind. Having her be able to control her powers helps her improve them and proved very useful for the scientist's research.

    Being decommissioned is full lobotomy and pushing the Drone is put in the job market to work for whoever, Drones are trained in basic job skills to log it in their basic memory beforehand. Additional training varies.

    It's a world where Civil Rights and Liberties and societal equality are a central theme. And Tonya becomes the spearhead.
     
  17. Aire
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    Aire Banned Sock-Puppet

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    Well I'll tell you this - as someone with military experience & friends in the military - you just pretty much extended her life well beyond what would happen in real life even. Particularly when I read the backstory you provided afterwards.

    In any number of specialized units - which are tightly knit groups - if they found some "outsider" had killed one of their older members that outsider would be "kissing" a bullet long before meeting some general and the regulars would blame that "unfortunate" death on an "accident". Plenty of soldiers suffer "unfortunate accidents" - it's one reason why officers [and soldiers] had to keep their mouths shut & play nice because if they are a**holes they oftentimes don't last long in wartime - I knew a former Vietnam officer who had so ticked off his soldiers that they poisoned his drinking water so that he was slowly dying and suffering throughout [it was a much nastier way to go than a bullet].

    Only thing I can suggest without knowing the entirety of your story is:

    a) someone higher up or as high up as General Striker gets involved. Her "friend" maybe that got her into the Ops.

    b) someone on the outside - such as a civilian / bad guy she spared - comes barreling in and rescues her

    c) something bigger - such as an extreme enemy - turns up and they have to let her loose to deal with this threat, but the underlying current of the story is she has to watch her back against the enemy AND the Ops she was/is part of.
     

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