Okay, I'm writing a scene in my scifi novel where the heroine (Let's call her Amanda Hamilton) has been captured by the villains and is being tortured. She's strapped to a rack that's basically used to pull people's arms and legs out of their sockets. So far, she's being questioned by the main villain who is only too happy to let her writhe on the board as the machine pulls her arms and legs off. He calls her a traitor to his people (She once worked for them) and says the king doesn't know she's in the dungeon. He also interrogates her as to the location of a known outlaw she had been seen with. I have two questions that I've broken up into catagories: Research Assuming she's rescued and recieves care, would Amanda be able to use her arms and legs again? What kind of machine do you call this? All I know is that IRL, people used this to torture political prisoners back in Medieval times. Deux Ex Machina/Damsel In Distress I realized that I've put her in an obviously nasty position. She's completely immobolized on a board. How in the world is she gonna save herself aside from a Duex Ex Machina? I did come up with an excuse like her ship's crew knew her last known location but when they failed to make contact with her, they gunned the ship towards her, following a tracking signal she activated when she was captured. However, this seems too cliched, too predictable. I want to figure out something else. Since I like to protray her as a strong woman that can take care of herself, wouldn't this be sort of the exact opposite? Tips?