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What steps could people take to avoid children who are attracted to them magically? The nature of the attraction is that it induces in the nearby (around a km^2) children an ability to sense the attractor's location, and a desire to seek the attractor out. This is the only effect, and it cannot be blocked or contained. The steps to avoid the children should be relatively cheap and not overly burdensome, while still being effective. The method should also avoid using magic. The technology is at a modern level. The population with this attractive power is small, but still great enough in humber that useful services or products would be created

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    $\begingroup$ I rather like the question - it has scope for interesting answers, sphenings is however correct in observing that it's not about worldbuilding/is story-building. $\endgroup$ Aug 9, 2021 at 14:54
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    $\begingroup$ The answer to this question depends very much on WHY your group wants to avoid children. Is it altruism (they are full of desire to kill/eat children), or annoyance (they hate kids, and are cursed to be followed by them). What is the historical period we are working with? Is it acceptable to let others know the children have to be kept away? Throughout history, there have been a variety of jobs that isolate a person from others. The simplest example is a lighthouse keeper, but lumberjacks or miners might work far from towns with children. They can be monks with a monastery away from others. $\endgroup$
    – DWKraus
    Aug 9, 2021 at 15:32
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    $\begingroup$ @ Ichthys King This is an unsual question, so I upvoted it. I wonder if your story idea is a drama, or a comedy where a child hating person has to put up with many children. $\endgroup$ Aug 9, 2021 at 16:37
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    $\begingroup$ Is there a range limit? If attractor goes to the North Pole, would children be like "Mom, Pop. I really want to go the North Pole." $\endgroup$
    – Alexander
    Aug 9, 2021 at 17:00
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    $\begingroup$ I do not think that the question is too story-based. However, I do think that the question needs clarifications. In order to say how to avoid the effects of a phenomenon, we should know how the phenomenon works. What are the mechanisms of attraction? What is the area of effect? Does isolation work? What are the results of this attraction? Is it limited to a desire to be close to an attractive person? What is the extent of the effect? Do children lose rationality and blindly seek the attractor? Without this information, all answers are pure speculation. $\endgroup$
    – Otkin
    Aug 9, 2021 at 18:13

10 Answers 10

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Their parents will prevent them from coming.

Take up residence in a neighborhood with children. You will attract them. Your house is locked. They will accumulate in your yard. It is a safe yard for children and it has some nice things and some chickens. Parents will notice the children are gone and go looking. Other parents will discover a lot of kids in your yard. They will be sent back to their respective homes. You will apologize.

Children will come back. Parents will now correctly guess where they have gone and come to collect them. You will apologize.

Parents will note the children making further efforts to go to your yard. They will prevent them from coming. Parents will take shifts collecting the ones who evade their own parents and bring them back to their own parents. Some parents will punish their children such that they no longer try to visit. Some parents will take the children on a daily visit to the yard and then home to get it out of their system.

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    $\begingroup$ Replace "you will apologize" with "they (the parents) will apologize". This is a great answer. If the yard is of the "kids would want to explore it" kind, all the parents will assume that their kids are the guilty party and will do your work for you. $\endgroup$
    – Tom
    Aug 10, 2021 at 5:12
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    $\begingroup$ The problem is that they are kids. If they are in your back yard, you kind of have to keep an eye on them. They'll scream and play, and all that kidstuff. They'll cross the road to get to your crib, into traffic. You're magic. Not even their fault. Parents will be nosing about, drop by your place, grab kid, shoot the breeze, talk about the kids. Dads will do the same, maybe over beers. Are you seeing anybody, do you have kids, what do you do for a living, you know how married parents are. Worse is when divorce happens, kid starts being a dick, parents start drama, or make you listen.... $\endgroup$
    – chiggsy
    Aug 10, 2021 at 6:00
  • $\begingroup$ That shit is sad. You know what will be really sad? When somebody refers to your crib as "Neverland." It'll happen when one of the kids wants to leave his surprise birthday to come over. All the friends will be at the party, so the kid wants to see you. Mommy aint magic. You should move. Why move? Let's make a few explicit observations. Necromancy is seen as the most wicked way to use magic. Many think this is because it deals with death. Not true. The evil comes from coercing victims into death. From coercion. The primary difference between good and evil in magic is that good won't coerce. $\endgroup$
    – chiggsy
    Aug 10, 2021 at 9:14
  • $\begingroup$ Now, we know that people use magic. Some probably keep it quieter than others. You never know when you might run into such a person. Now in many ways, we actually are cursed. We can't turn off our magic. Our black magic, because what we do is utter coercion. We don't do anything to make kids like us. We unasked, reach out and change the nature of their desires. Naked coercion. We can't release them. Or won't. The difference matters little. Perhaps this accursed situation we are in is because a battle was lost, a curse bestowed. In any case, we are the villain here. Sad. $\endgroup$
    – chiggsy
    Aug 10, 2021 at 9:30
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Don't try to suppress the power - make use of it. Or find somebody who does.

  • Teachers / on-site janitors at schools
  • dentists / pediatricians / the former's nurses
  • traveling ice cream salesperson / their spouse
  • tour guides for child-friendly tours
  • if it's short-range enough, a really good babysitter ...

Or, if the power is strong enough, and your dislike of children likewise, you could strike a deal with a child detention center. You would have to live on-site 24/7, but you could barter for a king's life in there. And even if some deliquent does find their way out of their designated housing, they will be much more easier to collect, since they'll be orbiting your house instead of roaming the world.

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    $\begingroup$ So - monetize their interest? Excellent idea. $\endgroup$ Aug 9, 2021 at 13:06
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    $\begingroup$ * Pied Piper, maybe? $\endgroup$ Aug 9, 2021 at 21:07
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    $\begingroup$ an array of hamsterwheels surrounding the person generating electricity $\endgroup$
    – M.Winkens
    Aug 10, 2021 at 12:50
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    $\begingroup$ Become a truancy officer seems like the best possible use of this power surely? $\endgroup$ Aug 10, 2021 at 13:15
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Besides @John Dvorak's excellent answer, there is an alternative solution if the character REALLY wants to avoid children as most as possible.

Work in a place that actively bars children

For example, in a nightclub. A few miscreants might try to sneak in to seek you, but they'll be deterred by security and / or other staff as they absolutely cannot be in the venue. You sleep during the times when they are expected to be out and about but they should be under someone else's supervision (e.g. at school or with parents / guardians)

If you also live in the place (e.g. in a loft upstairs), little chance to be ambushed during commuting and you can also have supplies delivered easily, and it gives you good cause to call the police / CPS on someone who is trying to reach you during the day

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Doesn't something similar happens already in every house where there is a child? As soon as an adult has to use the restroom or take a shower, the child will want to follow him/her.

If the doors have a childproof lock, the adult will be able to enjoy the privacy alone, if not...

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you! While the other answers all had good points, I appreciate the perspective of someone who's had (or at least seen) children's natural stalker tendencies. $\endgroup$
    – Alendyias
    Aug 9, 2021 at 22:17
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    $\begingroup$ "Doesn't something similar happens already in every house where there is a child? " No. $\endgroup$
    – RonJohn
    Aug 10, 2021 at 3:30
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    $\begingroup$ @RonJohn works like a charm with cats though $\endgroup$ Aug 10, 2021 at 4:58
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This is a common situation for certain people today. They have to avoid children. So, they map out where children are and don't go near those locations. Most parents keep their children fairly close to themselves or certain trusted locations. These people can't work in any of the occupations listed in @John Dvorak's answer. On Halloween, they keep the doors locked and lights out. When children are out playing in the street near them, they have to stay inside. They go shopping when most children are in school. (No, I don't have personal experience of these restrictions; I know some people who have them.)

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  • $\begingroup$ I didn't know that this was a real thing IRL. What's it called? $\endgroup$
    – The Daleks
    Aug 9, 2021 at 17:04
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    $\begingroup$ @TheDaleks this is an issue with registered sex offenders in the US, they have to register in a database a stay a certain distance away for children. $\endgroup$
    – John
    Aug 9, 2021 at 17:42
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    $\begingroup$ @TheDaleks And there is a database which has API's that can tell authorities if an address is a "child safe" place where those people are not supposed to be. $\endgroup$
    – David R
    Aug 9, 2021 at 17:59
  • $\begingroup$ @DavidR didn't know that. Out of curiosity: Is that API also available to the sex offenders? Basically, is there authoritative information available to them on where they can't go? $\endgroup$
    – Tom
    Aug 10, 2021 at 5:11
  • $\begingroup$ @Tom The database is available only to people in the legal system. To get access, you have to prove that you are part of the legal system and they lock down access to certain machines. The API's are interesting in what you send up and how much you can get back. $\endgroup$
    – David R
    Aug 10, 2021 at 14:16
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Gated Communities:

An old solution, and justified for a magical minority that attracts children. Locate walled compounds in the country or industrial parks away from "normies." Jobs are close by in industrial parks and far from kids. Telecommuting would also work. Kids are either out of range or kept out by the walls and security. Most kids aren't going to be able to get through a wall or past a guard.

Besides, where are the parents? I would lobby congress for this, and screw civil rights. The harassment level would be such that these folks would flock to such communities, and it would likely also become mandatory living places for pedophiles. Yes, it's creepy and unfair. Ask minorities how they feel about being redlined, and ask whites if they want to leave their gated communities.

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The Mosquito

A device to accomplish this already exists: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mosquito

Youths are able to hear higher frequencies, and if they are emitted with enough power it might deter them while not affecting older adults much.

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You induce in children the urge to locate you and seek for you. You can consider using a diversion. If you know the nature of the attraction be it magical or be it physical, you can use this knowledge in your advantage. Try constructing a device that mimics your ability to induce. You can place these on flying mechanoids. Program them to make them fly to children. The children will be looking for hot mechanoid instead of you.

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Smell Really Bad

Or maybe look very scary, although that isn’t as reliable. Everybody will avoid you, but especially children.

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Build walls around you at km^2+200ft distance.

Buy an abandon ghost town, and wall it off. As long as you live in the center. Should probably go at least 200ft extra to give yourself wiggle room.

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