1. Delphine the Delphox

    Delphine the Delphox Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2020
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    10

    How to contain a teleporting supervillain?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Delphine the Delphox, Sep 29, 2020.

    I'm working on a supervillain who has the ability to teleport. At some point in the story, she gets arrested and is held in a special cell designed to negate her ability. I want to make absolutely sure that the current setup of the cell is flawless, so I'd like to get some feedback on any flaws in the design and how it might be improved.

    First, a breakdown on how the villain's power works.

    * She can teleport any distance even to the opposite end of the planet.

    * She can only teleport to places she's been before, relative to Earth.

    * The teleportation is instant with no flashy visuals or sounds.

    * When she teleports, any physical matter at her destination swaps places with her. Therefore, if she were to hypothetically teleport into a wall, the pieces she replaced would appear at her inital point.

    * She cannot teleport if someone is looking at her or her destination. If just one person is watching her, this isn't a problem because the person has to eventually blink. It's more difficult around multiple people, however.

    * Looking at her through anything transparent like glass, or reflective like a mirror, is considered enough to hinder her teleportation.

    * She can teleport in front of a camera, and doing so distorts the footage. (Imagine Slender: The Eight Pages.)

    Now here are the specifics of her cell.

    * She's in a cubical cell made of glass with dimensions of 10'x10'x10', which itself is in the middle a large, round auditorium.

    * One hundred people, called observers, sit all around the auditorium. Their sole job is look directly at her in the cell to make sure she can't teleport. The observers constantly rotate shifts every two hours, and get relieved five people at a time so the crowd doesn't get distracted all at once.

    * The observers are forbidden from bringing any electronics into the auditorium, especially cell phones. Anyone caught violating this rule will not only be fired, but also put on trial for conspiring to help the prisoner escape.

    * Eight guards stand by with sniper rifles, ready to shoot the prisoner if she tries anything.

    * The cell itself is fitted with a bed and a toilet.

    * There is no shower, as the steam could cover the glass. Instead she's provided with dry bathing lotion and wipes.

    * Finally, the prisoner is only allowed to wear shorts and a sleeveless shirt, and her bed has no sheets or blankets. This is to ensure she can't cover herself up and teleport.

    So, with the current rules of her abilities, do the precautions taken with her cell seem sufficient enough to properly contain her? Are there any ways these methods could be improved?

    Note, she does eventually escape, but that's thanks to a special circumstance I refuse to spoil here.
     
  2. SethLoki

    SethLoki Retired Autodidact Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Messages:
    1,519
    Likes Received:
    1,645
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    I have one. People blink (just looked it up) 15–20 times per minute, so smooth it to say 17.5 times. A blink lasts 100ms so they're effectively blind for 1.75 seconds. That's a 3% chance of any single observer having their eyes closed at any instant you clock them. Mathematically then with a hundred people watching your villain there's gonna be times (very short times) where all their blinks will coincide. Seriously, if they were filmed at a frame rate so fast this could be captured, I’d intuit that it'd happen before a couple of weeks are up.
    If the teleporter's repeatedly polling their power in search of opportunity (much like wifi or Bluetooth searches for a signal) they're gonna find that sweet spot and whoosh—disappear. < And this is not withstanding a near superpower required by the observers...to stay focused. Me... if I had a teleporter in captivity (how did you deal with this?).. I'd drug them with something to dial their brain down, heck, induce a coma if necessary. :p. Slippery as eels them teleporters!
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2020
  3. Delphine the Delphox

    Delphine the Delphox Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2020
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    10
    Thank you very much for your input! Yeah, I can see the problem now. Drugging her would make a lot of sense. In fact, I've already figured out the perfect way to make it work!

    They drug her enough that her mind is sluggish and she can't focus properly on her powers, in fact she's barely aware of her surroundings at all except for the little necessities in her cell. But overtime, she starts developing a resistance to the drug, and by the time she's able to escape, she's become completely immune to the regular dosage. When the doctor next comes in to inject her, she makes her move...

    Thanks so much!
     
    Iain Aschendale likes this.
  4. SethLoki

    SethLoki Retired Autodidact Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Messages:
    1,519
    Likes Received:
    1,645
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    And saves the wage bill for the 100 observers! I mean, health and safety at work, toilet breaks, coffee breaks, shift allowances, health insurance... it all adds up :)
     
  5. Delphine the Delphox

    Delphine the Delphox Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2020
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    10
    It might still be wise to use a handful of observers just in case. Twenty at a time at least.
     
  6. Accelerator231

    Accelerator231 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2019
    Messages:
    499
    Likes Received:
    283
    To be frank, since we're already going so far, I would think about an explosive collar or an implanted bomb.
     
  7. Urocyon

    Urocyon Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2020
    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    46
    Location:
    Montana
    Before making suggestions, is her ability a magical/supernatural ability or a scientific ability? This makes quite a bit of difference when considering preventative measures, as that changes the setting and therefore the rules of your world. From the sound of it, I'd say magical; if so, how does said magic work? When she teleports, does she also teleport what she's wearing (serious question!) Do the guards also have access to magical powers?
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2020
  8. Delphine the Delphox

    Delphine the Delphox Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2020
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    10
    ^^ That could work too.

    ^ It's a superpower. Very few people are born with one, as in less than .00001% of the world's population. It's a random mutation that some people just happen to be born with. And no, superpowers can't be inherited. So two people with superpowers who have a kid together aren't any more likely to have a super-powered kid than two normal folks.
     
  9. Urocyon

    Urocyon Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2020
    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    46
    Location:
    Montana
    Okay, so a genetic superpower. Biological. Thus the power could rationally rely upon energy present within the body: adenosine triphosphate. By keeping the prisoner in a state of continuous near-starvation, one could assume that she'd be unable to utilize her superpower and become containable. This doesn't conflict with the visual inhibitions placed upon her superpower, but might give a scientific grounding to your story, if that's important. Such harsh/drastic measures might also give her guards a more ruthless or authoritarian flavor, which is exactly the mental imagery that comes to mind with all the observers surrounding her. Quite a bit of Big Brother imagery there. Even if this isn't the case, try using whatever solution you come up with as a way to flavor the guarding faction...

    Incidentally, if similar powers manifest themselves in the population at around .00001%, that means about 77,000 people worldwide who share similar characteristics. Perhaps some of them are guarding her using their own powers?

    Just a few thoughts...
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2020
  10. Delphine the Delphox

    Delphine the Delphox Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2020
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    10
    Thanks for all the tips. I'll have to think exactlty on what to do, but I'll say this for now; this villain is pure evil and extremely dangerous, so any extremes used to contain her are pretty justified.

    Also, .00001% is approximately 780 people, and the actual number of people with such powers are even less than that.
     
  11. Aldarion

    Aldarion Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2019
    Messages:
    239
    Likes Received:
    156
    As pointed out, keep her drugged. That is actually the easiest - and most reliable - way to contain her, as 1) it keeps down on employment (which is important with such a boring job, as people would stop paying attention eventually) and 2) she can't teleport if she can't focus (I imagine she would risk entombing herself in rock or something).
     
  12. Friedrich Kugelschreiber

    Friedrich Kugelschreiber marshmallow Contributor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2017
    Messages:
    4,323
    Likes Received:
    5,440
    Honestly you'd only need three or four at a time if they could synchronize their blinks. Say shifts of an hour and a half (great part time job) and you'd only need like three or four dozen people in total.
     
  13. Delphine the Delphox

    Delphine the Delphox Member

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2020
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    10
    I would just like to say thank you to everyone who took the time to share their thoughts on this. You've all been a great help!
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice