How do I kill off a character to later be resurrected?

Jemini

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I've got a problem in my story. I put Amashilama into my story as a fairly major character. Amashilama is a divine leech from Mesopotamian lore, and her legend deals very specifically in her being an instrumental part in bringing the god of resurrection back to life.

So, if I have her as a fairly prominent character in my story, it almost feels as though I actually HAVE TO show off her bringing someone back from the dead. But, here's the problem. I don't have any good plot consistent way to actually kill off a character without making it feel shoe-horned in.

In other words, I have the exact opposite problem of most people in this whole resurrection thing. Most people make the resurrection feel cheap and shoe-horned in. In my case, I have the ground work put very well in place for a resurrection to take place. My issue is that I do not have a good plot-relevant way to kill off a character.

So, how do I kill off a character in order for them to become subject to Amashilama's resurrection magic without making it LOOK like the only reason I killed them off is to have them become subject to Amashilama's resurrection magic?
 

Kouneko

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I've got a problem in my story. I put Amashilama into my story as a fairly major character. Amashilama is a divine leech from Mesopotamian lore, and her legend deals very specifically in her being an instrumental part in bringing the god of resurrection back to life.

So, if I have her as a fairly prominent character in my story, it almost feels as though I actually HAVE TO show off her bringing someone back from the dead. But, here's the problem. I don't have any good plot consistent way to actually kill off a character without making it feel shoe-horned in.

In other words, I have the exact opposite problem of most people in this whole resurrection thing. Most people make the resurrection feel cheap and shoe-horned in. In my case, I have the ground work put very well in place for a resurrection to take place. My issue is that I do not have a good plot-relevant way to kill off a character.

So, how do I kill off a character in order for them to become subject to Amashilama's resurrection magic without making it LOOK like the only reason I killed them off is to have them become subject to Amashilama's resurrection magic?
Kill a villain them bring him back
 

Mephi

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make dying a plot point. like, you need to get some info from the underworld. kill killyourself, have her bring ya back. your search is on a timer.
 

EternalSunset0

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Carefully.
No, really. This is easy to mess up. *looks at Shaman King*
Oh man, the amount of cheap deaths and resurrections there. Probably gonna give Fairy Tail a run for its money.

Difference is Fairy Tail isn't even that blatant in showing the characters go to the afterlife and such. Most of it are characters getting hit and everyone crying, but in SK they actually go to Hell, etc.
 
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I've got a problem in my story. I put Amashilama into my story as a fairly major character. Amashilama is a divine leech from Mesopotamian lore, and her legend deals very specifically in her being an instrumental part in bringing the god of resurrection back to life.

So, if I have her as a fairly prominent character in my story, it almost feels as though I actually HAVE TO show off her bringing someone back from the dead. But, here's the problem. I don't have any good plot consistent way to actually kill off a character without making it feel shoe-horned in.

In other words, I have the exact opposite problem of most people in this whole resurrection thing. Most people make the resurrection feel cheap and shoe-horned in. In my case, I have the ground work put very well in place for a resurrection to take place. My issue is that I do not have a good plot-relevant way to kill off a character.

So, how do I kill off a character in order for them to become subject to Amashilama's resurrection magic without making it LOOK like the only reason I killed them off is to have them become subject to Amashilama's resurrection magic?
If you don't want to make the resurrection feel like 'it happen because a god did it and the author demand it', make sure there is a huge cost doing so, like really huge, like if you resurrected someone, Amashilama will die or something(the same level as that.)

(P.S. if you use an insignificant character to die, it would still feel cheap. Resurrection is a big deal after all.)
 
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AliceShiki

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Don't make it a shoehorned in thingy? Slowly develop things to a point where a character eventually dies.

You want someone to die, then lead the story in a way that the death doesn't come off as cheap and instead as something that is natural and expected.

I dunno the details of your story to say anything else, I didn't read it. Just go and make a sensible reason for a character to die. Make it make sense, then all is well.
 

Marmalade

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Make a loveable charater sacrifice themselves in a dangerous situation. a situation where the only one that could save them would be the likeable character. or make a kuudere character die smiling happily because they finally felt useful
 

Comiak

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Foreshadow. Give readers hints or even outright say that resurrection is more of a trade of life. Once everything is set up just cross the line. You don't have to do any acrobatic jumps or somersaults, just listen to your instincts as a writer.
 

Jemini

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Foreshadow. Give readers hints or even outright say that resurrection is more of a trade of life. Once everything is set up just cross the line. You don't have to do any acrobatic jumps or somersaults, just listen to your instincts as a writer.

Thanks everybody who has made a comment like this, but as explained in the OP, I have already laid the groudwork to make it so the resurrection will not feel cheap.

The problem is, I don't actually have someone to kill to use said well-prepared resurrection on. The plot simply is not structured with someone's death in mind.
 

BearlyAlive

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Just in-medias-res it if you know the how ond who but don't really know the why.
Timejump to the death and resurrection, then tell why it happened. You could also use the whole thing to introduce or re-introduce some old/new characters that are relevant to what is happening.
 

LostLibrarian

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So, if I have her as a fairly prominent character in my story, it almost feels as though I actually HAVE TO show off her bringing someone back from the dead. But, here's the problem. I don't have any good plot consistent way to actually kill off a character without making it feel shoe-horned in.
Then don't.

Resurrecting a character has the massive problem of destroying a lot of future stakes (unless you have a lot of (often even worse) rules) but it can also make the character a lot less appealing. One example would probably be Kakashi from Naruto. His resurrection gave him some kind of in-build plot armor where the majority of the readership cared a lot less about future fights because "you wouldn't kill him twice".
If you add a death that doesn't fit inside the themes or pacing of the story, it'll feel even more out of place. Even more so, if you do it because you think you have to...


I don't know the details of your story, but if a death doesn't fit - maybe that character questioning whether they can actually revive someone might fit? The fear of not being able to when it counts while at the same time hoping you would never find out. That doubt could also keep the stakes alive and add some interpersonal drama...

That said... is there any need to have a major death that is forshadowed and build up if it's about the ability itself. If you want to show it, you could always just display it on some temporary side-character. The usual kind little girl in a village the party visits and that gets wounded/falls sick/etc. From that, you could also add some drama around the question of "Can't save everyone in every village' or something like that...
 

Jemini

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Then don't.

Resurrecting a character has the massive problem of destroying a lot of future stakes (unless you have a lot of (often even worse) rules) but it can also make the character a lot less appealing. One example would probably be Kakashi from Naruto. His resurrection gave him some kind of in-build plot armor where the majority of the readership cared a lot less about future fights because "you wouldn't kill him twice".
If you add a death that doesn't fit inside the themes or pacing of the story, it'll feel even more out of place. Even more so, if you do it because you think you have to...


I don't know the details of your story, but if a death doesn't fit - maybe that character questioning whether they can actually revive someone might fit? The fear of not being able to when it counts while at the same time hoping you would never find out. That doubt could also keep the stakes alive and add some interpersonal drama...

That said... is there any need to have a major death that is forshadowed and build up if it's about the ability itself. If you want to show it, you could always just display it on some temporary side-character. The usual kind little girl in a village the party visits and that gets wounded/falls sick/etc. From that, you could also add some drama around the question of "Can't save everyone in every village' or something like that...

Problem is, there are consequences to her resurrection methods. The mere fact she uses it on a character will make that character matter.

That said, that does give me an idea. Kill off a default side-character, and then make that character matter more to the story after their resurrection than before it.

In terms of what said consequences are, her resurrection brings the dead back to life. However, it does not make them "no longer dead." They are still dead, but they are "alive" as well. In other words, she creates conscious and sentient undead. And, yes, this is very directly right out of her legend in Mesopotamian mythology.
 
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