Sentries are Always Killed
Sentries are there for security. They are your first line of defense. Put them out there and, for the moment, you can set aside your weapons, relax, catch up on sleep. There’s nothing glamorous about sentry duty. It’s boring, tedious and, because you’re often by yourself, lonely. And you’re vulnerable, likely to be killed. Need evidence?
Just check out the hundreds of movies which include scenes of an attack about to be launched against a military encampment, a gang hideout, a fortress or castle – you get the idea. Because success depends on the element of surprise the sentries must first be engaged and neutralized. Otherwise the alarm will sound, defenders will be alerted and the attacking forces will most likely be repelled. But that’s not what the script calls for.
The audience knows full well that the sentry hasn’t much of a chance, indeed, that he’s a sitting duck. He’s probably cold, tired, nearly asleep, just waiting for his shift to end. But now he’s being stalked. Sadly, he has no idea he’s been targeted.
Typically it’s over in a matter of seconds, without much of a struggle or any audible sounds. The sentry may be struck by an arrow, choked to unconsciousness or death, struck with a burst from a silenced gun, or dispatched by a vicious thrust of a knife. If several sentries are present, all are eliminated in much the same manner. The attack can now proceed, as everyone watching surely knew it would.
So, if you’re chosen to play the part of a sentry in a play or movie, that’s fine; but expect no spoken lines and understand that you’re headed for a quick and painful exit.