Playing With: The Punishment
Basic Trope: Divine retribution in the form of Immortality and/or amazing power.
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- Straight: Alice killed her sister Betty in ancient times, so the gods cursed her to live as an immortal Lich, complete with all the Required Secondary Powers.
- Exaggerated: Alice killed Betty, hunted down and killed her family, burned every orphanage in a 50 mile radius, and destroyed Tokyo. The gods' "punishment" makes her an immortal, all-powerful demon queen. They even throw in her own massage therapist.
- Downplayed: Alice's punishment involves an extra 20 years to live and the power to talk to chipmunks.
- The evil Gods intend to use Alice as their Dragon.
- The gods work In Mysterious Ways; Alice's punishment is part of a long term and complex plan that will eventually lead to a truly crushing punishment.
- She's immortal, yes, but her powers are agonizing, nobody likes her, and those chipmunks never have anything worth listening to anyways. Basically, she's in hell, she's just not actually there.
- Alice's punishment for petting puppies is to be sealed inside a can. While conscious.
- Because of Alice's crimes, she is sentenced to spend the rest of her life in a state of mindless bliss, innocent, peaceful, and happy.
- Alice has the option of taking on terrible burdens (for instance, a supernatural terminal illness) to help the souls of her ancestors overcome their misdeeds in life.
- Subverted: The powers and immortality are nice, but they come with some VERY nasty side-effects.
- Double Subverted: Alice doesn't care.
- Alice whines obnoxiously about how her amazing powers are somehow a curse. The other characters just roll their eyes.
- "Rule 666 clearly states that Alice's crime MUST be punished with immortality and superpowers. ...uh, I'm sure the High Ones must've had their reasons..."
- Zig Zagged: Alice's powers come with an instant eternity-sentence behind a magic seal. Bob releases Alice, so she conspires to raise the Legions of Hell to take revenge. However, the years have taken a toll and she needs Applied Phlebotinum to recharge. But it's been longer than she thought and the Plebotinum is extremely scarce in the modern world, severely restricting her otherwise dangerous power.
- Averted: The Gods give Alice powers for her good deeds, or her punishment is proportionally hideous to her crime.
- Enforced: ????
- Lampshaded: Alice and the other characters comment on how her situation is anything but disadvantageous.
- Invoked: Alice commits her crime specifically because she wants The Punishment...
- Exploited: The Powers That Be gives her powers that aren't worth the drawbacks.
- Defied: "No, Alice, killing your sister gets you ostracized from the rest of mankind, not amazing powers or immortality. Look it up."
- Discussed: "Let Me Get This Straight. You pissed off God, and He lets you live? FOREVER?"
- Conversed: "You'd think omnipotent beings would realize that giving dangerous people superpowers isn't really the best way to punish them, wouldn't you?"
- Deconstructed: Alice's initial glee with her situation wanes considerably once she realizes that being immortal ain't all it's cracked up to be, and that her dark powers don't discriminate between friend and foe. She eventually realizes that her punishment was actually to spend eternity alone and friendless.
- Reconstructed: Alice is returned to being mortal at a point where she has just a few years of good health left, causing some form of irrevocable loss while not changing the consequences of what she has done in the interim (including any enjoyment derived from using her immortal powers). As such, she is effectively given the opportunity to try and atone (or not) and has lost the abilities that might have enabled further evil to happen. The gods ultimately planned to try and teach her the merits of companionship and compassion in preparation for the afterlife, and whether or not she learned them will serve as a critical determiner for her final destination.
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