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I'm having trouble with the translation of 終わらせている in the following sentence, and as far as I understand it likely translates here as "die". But I never found this meaning for 終わる in vocabulary, and why is it in させる form ?

「ええ・・・・・・摩夜さんこそ、犯人が狙う本命だと思うんです」 「いったい・・・・・・誰がそんなことを・・・・・・?」 「それは・・・・・・」 ついさっきまで、詩音さんがやっていると思っていた。 でも彼女は死んでしまった。 だとしたら摩夜さんはもう安全だと思うのだけど・・・・・・ それともーー既に終わらせているのだろうか・・・・・・?

Some sort of translation: "Until a moment ago, I though it was Shion-san. But she is dead. In this case I think that Maya-san is safe now... or - already dead."

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I see 死ぬ。 listed as meaning six in 大辞林, so that meaning is listed in dictionaries. –  snailboat Aug 4 '13 at 16:11
    
What seems particularly odd to me is that 終わらせる would be used instead of 終える...I'm looking forward to seeing what the answer to this is. –  Ataraxia Aug 4 '13 at 16:11
    
Added more context. –  DarkAkira Aug 4 '13 at 18:51
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According to the context you provided, I think "既に終わらせているのだろうか" is "(犯人は)既に(仕事を)終わらせているのだろうか". –  marasai Aug 5 '13 at 0:42
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1 Answer

up vote 3 down vote accepted

It's hard to say without understanding the whole twisted plot, and I can't really come up with a plausble interpretation.

The reason "dead" is unlikely in this sentence is that 終わる as dead would normally mean committing a suicide as 終える. The subject of this sentence is Maya-san, so this becomes "or Maya might have committed a suicice, and I don't think it flows very well.

Another possibility is "[the killer had achieved his/her objectives and] the killing has ended", which I would say more natural use of 終わらせる, except that this won't explain それとも.

I think it's fair to say this text isn't particularly well written. I think more sentenes that follow might help disambiguate.

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