1. Rumwriter
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    Rumwriter Active Member

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    How to poison a character

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Rumwriter, May 2, 2014.

    I've got a character I need to poison, and I'm not sure how to do it.

    He's a king, and I'm setting it up by showing the poisoning being put in place at night, but I don't want the actual poisoning to happen until the next day.

    So I thought okay, character sneaks in, puts poison into his goblet of wine, he drinks it the next day. But then I think "what sort of king would just drink a goblet of wine that's been sitting out over night? Not this one."

    Or the assailant could spike a whole bottle of wine--but then I don't like the idea of anyone could become the victim of the poisoning, and I want it specifically targeted.

    I'm trying not to overthink things, but I'm sure there must be a simple solution that I'm just not coming up with. This is for a spec script I'm writing, so it needs to be as concise as possible, as few scenes and characters as possible.

    Ideas?
     
  2. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    The chain of people from kitchen to king is a highly select group. Unless you want to include someone who turns traitor (or is traitor in hiding), that's a hard route. Contact poison? A cream, an oil. Something for which there won't be a taster prior to the king. The king found dead with the tragically beautiful form of his masseuse (masseur) next to him, also dead, an unwitting victim her/himself.
     
  3. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Does it have to be wine? Couldn't it be put in a piece of fruit or a fondant or some kind of food. Especially if it was something off limits to others.
     
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  4. Acanthophis
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    Acanthophis ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Contributor

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    What if the eating utensils have poison on them? Kings typically sit in the same area - usually where they can be seen by all. Like Wreybies said, there are only a few who responsible for what food gets to kings; they typically had cup-bearers, men who were highly trusted by the king himself, to serve him drinks. That is one reason why I think drink-poisoning is off the tables in most cases. I don't think there is a specific person entrusted with the king's cutlery though, but I wouldn't be surprised if there was.
     
  5. Rumwriter
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    Rumwriter Active Member

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    It doesn't have to be wine.

    I thought about just having the character put it on the cup brim. Maybe a snake is put into his room.
     
  6. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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    A small poisoned barb on the inside of his crown; it pricks his head when he puts it on just enough to draw blood.

    Rub the inside of his bathtub with poison?
     
  7. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm thinking something that he takes into his mouth as part of his morning grooming. Some variant of a toothbrush has been used for thousands of years, for example, as have mouthwashes.
     
  8. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    He could also be poisoned by inhalation. For example, poison of certain type (you can either research or invent this) is applied to a candle (ointment) or even sprinkled (powder) into a well of a previously used candle, which can be in a bathroom or on his bedside table, or somewhere else private, so when he lights it, etc.
     
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  9. MLM
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    MLM Banned for trolling

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    You could use a hunter-seeker like in Dune.
     
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  10. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    Ooo, so much potential here. :) What if the candle(s) were made with the core of it(them) being the poison fume releasing agent. Ever seen how candles get made the traditional way, by dipping over and over again. It would be like a time bomb. The candle would be perfectly normal in all appearances until it burned down to the core with the poison laden wax.
     
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  11. Smoke Z
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    Smoke Z Active Member

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    There was a dart-poison involving horse-manure and the blood-type of the victim. (Or all blood types to be less-effective.) I wish I remembered more about it, but I think it was a ninja thing, or an anarchist thing.

    Tetanus has an 8-day incubation period, making the leap that assassins know how to culture it.
     
  12. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    a neurotoxin dissolved in dimethyl sulfoxide, so it is absorbed rapidly through the skin into the bloodstream. The king notices a taste of garlic just before he begins to go numb all over. A few moments later, his breathing stops as the nerves regulating those muscles stop firing.
     
  13. Bryan Romer
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    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

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    Is your story based on a "realistic" medieval world? If so, poisoning is actually quite hard. Primitive poisons had to be administered in fairly large doses and had very distinctive tastes. The only toxins that might kill in small doses might be animal derived toxins, such as some snake venoms, frog toxins etc. But you still have the problem of injecting it. A tiny needle prick won't do it.

    One of the most popular poisons was "Deadly Nightshade" - Belladonna. Half a dozen berries from the plant which are sweet and look like blueberries will kill. A single leaf is deadly if ingested, and the root is the most toxic of all.

    Note that most Kings had food tasters and a very strictly controlled kitchen. The only way to get the poison into the King was usually by someone he trusted and had access to his food or person.

    If your fictional world has a Catholic Church, then one possibility is to poison the chalice or sacramental wine of the King's private confessor/chapel.

    Or if you have the equivalent of a ninja, he could drip the poison down a thread into the King's mouth at night.
     
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  14. Robert_S
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    Robert_S Contributing Member

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    A poisoned needle in his chair?
     
  15. Ritrezer
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    Ritrezer Member

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    Food and Drink
    Items only he touches, ones like a Scepter.
    Through external injections- Darts for instance.

    Make the character give the King something that will make him immensely sick and the next day the healer for instance could say he is dying and then in the treatment itself poison him.

    Unless I'm wrong there are slow poisons as well. And perhaps, small amount of poison can be administered over a period of time, so that he dies on a particular day. That can be calculated perhaps, for instance- One drop of this a day and he'll be out in 11 days of time.

    Anyway, I wish you luck. :D
     
  16. TheSmiler
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    TheSmiler Member

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    Could the king have a cold ? Work with me on this.

    You could add a side story that an alchemist is brewing a potion to make the king better, however whilst he nips out a mouse accidentally scurries past the shelf of ingredients above the potion bowl. The ingredient (clear liquid poison) drips into the bowl and then rolls off the shelf underneath a table.

    Ok might be a bit too late but in my opinion it would be best to think out of the box. Gives you something else to think about as well.
     
  17. stevesh
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    stevesh Banned Contributor

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    In Jeffrey Deaver's latest novel, the serial killer murders his victims by tattooing them with poison rather than ink. Might be something there you could use.
     
  18. Ulramar
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    Ulramar Contributing Member Contributor

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    GAME OF THRONES SEASON 4 SPOILERS....

    King Jofferey had the poison "Strangler" put into his wine. It made him look like he choked to death. Strangler isn't real, so.....

    Unless this is historical fiction, create some made up poison and put it into his drink.
     
  19. Inkwell1
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    Inkwell1 Active Member

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    Perhaps you put poison in the goblet of wine, they drink it with supper, and are found dead the next morning? Or is that exactly what you don't want?
     
  20. GoldenFeather
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    GoldenFeather Active Member

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    Actually.... there may be a way around this. The king has testers who test the wine, yes. But what if the bad guy simply poisoned the cup? Rubbed the poison oil, or what not, onto the rim on the kings cup? No one drinks from that cup except the king. The wine will pass for testing, but it won't be the wine that will kill him, it will be the poison on the rom of his cup. The moment his lips touch it, it will enter his body. Plus he will be licking his lips as he eats, so this is a guarantee it will enter his system.

    You can even play more on this and have people be shocked, thinking its witchcraft or sorcery of some sort, because so many people drank the wine and only the KING was poisoned. That may also add some suspense and intrigue to the story.
     

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