|Required Viewing of the 72nd Hunger Games
Author: HannahDrogo PM
Katniss is 14, and she is required to watch as people she grew up with die on the television. The arena from a viewer's point of view. The title was formerly "Required to Watch", please read and review! T for possible future gore and blood.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Suspense - Katniss E. - Chapters: 3 - Words: 4,130 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 5 - Updated: 03-09-11 - Published: 03-07-11 - id: 6805502
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
My heart beats faster, as it always does, when I let go of the arrow and make it through the beaver's eye socket, effectively killing it. I smile triumphantly and stalk towards it, my knife at the ready. I slit its throat and let the blood drain until it's only a light dripping. Stuffing it in my bag, I go off to meet Gale in our usual place.
He's not there when I arrive, so I start to pick strawberries for the mayor. I've just about got enough when the dead beaver I killed dangles suddenly in front of me. I let out a yelp and fall back, surprised. Then I hear Gale laughing, and I turn to see him rolling on the ground in mirth. Scowling, I pick up the beaver he dropped.
"Stop laughing, you dodo, I wasn't scared, you just startled me, that's all." I spit at him, and eventually he sobers up.
"You were scared, Catnip Everdeen! Admit it, you fought de wittle dead beavwer was going to get you…" He says in a mock baby voice and starts to howl with laughter again.
"Oh yes, you're sooo clever!" I hiss sarcastically, and then let out a humorless laugh. "I bet Posy could have come up with something more original!"
Gale calms down and stands up. "Calm down, Catnip, it was just a joke." He smiles kindly.
I glare for a few more seconds and then turn around, looking for his game bag. "What'd you get?"
"Just a few squirrels and a rabbit." He shrugs. "Not much going for it today."
I nod. "Well, let's head back, okay?"
We split the game fifty/fifty and start our hike back to the fence. Crawling under it, we say goodbye and then part ways. I open the door to our house and Prim greets me with a hug, saying "Do you know what tonight is?"
I force a smile and say, "Yes, I do."
Prim grins widely, "The Interviews!"
"Yeah, they'll be wearing more pretty clothes, huh?" I say as I hang up my jacket and leave my game bag next to the door.
"Yes!" Prim sings and then leaves to help my mother preserve the bread I brought home last night.
I spend the day skinning my kills and feeding the entrails to Buttercup, Prim's cat. When this is done, I leave to go trade what my family won't eat at the Hob. Greasy Sae traps me in conversation a little longer than I would like, and I just make it back to the house in time to catch the Tributes sitting down on chairs on the stage in front of what seems to be the whole Capitol.
I watch with disinterest as tribute after tribute flirts with Caeser Flickerman, the interviewer who doesn't seem to age as the years go by. His hair, lips and eyelids are a shocking bright orange, and he laughs at every bad joke the tributes make, helping them not make a fool of themselves in front of the entire country.
I don't catch most of their names, but I do notice a few of them, besides the District 12 tributes. There's a tall and lanky red haired boy from District 3 who seems good-natured, but something in his eyes (Or maybe it's the way he seems reverent when they discuss the killing aspect of the games) gives me the feeling he'll be a cruel and sadistic murderer. Then there's the small girl from District 6 who jokes about being able to fashion an explosive from most anything, and her counterpart who doesn't seem to have much idea about where he is or what Caeser is asking of him.
Finally, Gladys steps forward to the microphone after the large boy from district 11 goes back to his seat. Looking at her with the others, I realize she's easily the best-looking competitor at the Games with her large brown, curious eyes and full lips. Then I see her gown, which is quite remarkable. The tight bodice is a sleek and slightly reflective yellow, working well with, but not matching the large, and many-layered bright yellow lower part of the dress. The camera circles her as she walks forward, and I notice the bright yellow fade into a light brown in the back of her gown. She reaches Caeser, and he takes her hand a kisses the long, brown silk glove, and the camera zooms in to them both. Her dark blonde hair is sleeked back and her nose and lips are painted with an intricate design in a light orange color.
I don't understand this outfit. The outfits worn by tributes are traditionally supposed to reflect their district's specialty, ours being coal mining. And then I see the design of the dress. If you look close enough, you can see the feather pattern delicately sewed on in silk thread. I realize she's a canary. Sometimes we use canaries in the mines to warn of noxious gases.
"You look simply ravishing, Ms. Reger." Caeser compliments, and puts a hand to his chest. "My heart's going all aflutter. Feel it." He insists, taking Gladys' hand and pressing it to his chest.
Gladys smiles, "I'm terribly sorry, Mr. Flickerman!"
"Please, call me Caeser." The audience oohs and laughs. "And don't be sorry, it's exquisite."
"Well then you're welcome, Caeser." She winks, and then turns towards the audience, her face benignly seductive. Caeser clears his throat, and then starts the interview.
"So, Gladys, how are you liking Capitol life?" He begins casually.
"It's nice, I like it just fine." She answers in a small voice, a tiny smile playing on her lips.
Caeser grins. "Alright, enough with the small talk. Are you nervous for the Games?"
Gladys turns back from the audience, to look Caeser straight in the eye; her mischievous smile barely concealed, as she blocks her lips with her hand, apparently not to let the other tributes hear her, and whispers "Only for my competitors' sake."
The audience makes an OOOOHH sound and the other tributes hiss from behind her, indignant.
Caeser laughs good-naturedly. "I'd be afraid of you, confidence like that."
By this time Gladys has turned back to the crowd, smirking slightly. "I have a lot more than confidence, Caeser."
"I'd bet on it. Now, we see that you scored a nine with the Gamemakers. What's your secret?"
"I don't have any secrets, Caeser, secrets don't make friends." She says matter-of-factly. The audience laughs. "I'll tell you how I did it." She pauses here for a few moments, and you can see the crowd holding their breath, and the camera breaks to the Gamemakers, who are obviously miffed that she's revealing what went on in the training center. Gladys is still waiting, and finally Caeser presses her.
"How'd you do it?"
"It's simple." She breaths, her eyebrow slightly cocked. Then she turns to the camera directly, and stares into its depths. I feel as though she's looking directly at me. Suddenly she cocks her head to the side, and she smiles widely, her teeth as white as snow. It reminds me of when the sun peeks its head out briefly in the middle of a storm, or seeing the first flower of spring. "I'm pretty." She says simply.
The whole of the Capitol, it seems, laughs hysterically, and even I let out a chuckle.
Caeser Flickerman blinks, and then roars with the rest of the crowd. He eventually composes himself, and wipes a tear from his eye. "If that's all you need to get a nine, then sign me up!"
The buzzer blares and Caeser jumps. "Well time does fly when you're having fun," he said tragically. "Alright, Ms. Reger, if you would please go back to your seat, and have your handsome counterpart join me here?"
Gladys curtsies, and glides back to her seat, passing Ben as he walks up.
He's dressed much like Gladys, with a reflective brown shirt underneath a bright yellow suit and bow tie. When the camera zooms in on him, I see that it has the same feather patterning as Gladys' gown.
"Hello, Mr. Abby, you're doing well this evening, I assume?"
Ben nods, "Yes sir."
"Good. Now, I thought we'd just get down to who you are, and forget the Games for your interview, okay?" Caeser asks.
"Yes sir." Ben replies again.
"Like I told your lovely friend, you can call me Caeser." When Ben nods again, Caeser chuckles. "Well, for your interview, I'd like to start by asking the basics. What is your favorite color?"
Ben looks up into Caeser's eyes, and answers "Red."
"Fine color, fine color. I love it; it always reminds me of my mother-in-law's eyes." Caeser nods grimly as the audience laughs. "What about your family? Friends?"
"I've got two parents and a grandma, and my best friends are Oliver and Willoughby." He says simply.
"They sound lovely. Do you have any hobbies?"
"Oliver, Willoughby and I race all over District 8. I'm the fastest in my school." And Caeser keeps this simple Q & A going for 3 minutes until the buzzer sounds the end of the interview, at which time I really doubt there isn't a heart in the entire country that hasn't melted at the complete innocence of this boy. I turn off the TV immediately after Caeser Flickerman signs off, sick to my stomach. I go to bed without dinner, to be alone with my anger and sorrow-filled thoughts. Ben is just a kid. He likes running and dogs and playing pranks on the girls in his class and helping his mother do the laundry. And now he's going to die. And for what? The glory of one of the Career Tributes? The amusement of the shallow Capitol-dwellers? It's disgusting.
Sometime before I fall asleep, I wonder vaguely what got into Gladys. As far as I know (and I don't know very much, admittedly) she was always one of the most quiet children in school. Whenever Gale mentioned her, it was to say she was sitting quietly in the background, observing and not participating. So it's odd that she was so confident tonight. Not just confident, but… cocky.
A/N: I'd like to add, that this story is dedicated to my best friend, Rebecca. She's never going to read this story, but I'd like everyone to know just how wonderful she is.
Once again, please read and review, and I love you all bunches!