I’m in the middle of a scene where the Yellow [a very powerful healer] is interrogating Death using its paranormal talents to work out whether Death is lying or not.
Death must lie, and the Yellow must believe the lie, but how can it when it’s aware of Death’s feelings?
That was the point at which I remembered that sociopaths were supposed to be very good at cheating real world polygraph tests. As iVokh are essentially sociopaths, I realised that what worked in the real world might also work in Vokhtah.
That led me to the internet where I found this fascinating article in Wikihow: https://www.wikihow.com/Cheat-a-Polygraph-Test-(Lie-Detector)
If you’ve ever secretly wondered how people can cheat the polygraph test, it boils down to knowing how the machine and the interrogator asking the questions work together. This can be broken down into a few key things:
- The control questions – i.e. the harmless questions – allow the machine to gauge what physiological reactions the subject has when ‘telling the truth’.
- These reactions then become the baseline against which the ‘real’ – i.e. dangerous – questions are compared.
- If you can change your physiological reactions to the control questions, the baseline will be faulty.
- Then, when the real questions are asked, the machine will not be able to tell which answer is a lie because the lies will resemble the baseline.
Of course the skill of the interrogator also comes into it, but I now have enough to write the scene convincingly. -joy-