Zangoose had somehow managed not to crack under Eevee's hilarity. He had also managed to teach her quite a lot about the Hunger Games and how she could survive them. She had been a very vigilant student, taking everything Zangoose said seriously, training every day, learning the most beneficial moves, learning how to utilize her Ability, Adaptability, what alliances were, who she should consider making them with and how she could make them the easiest. Zangoose was very proud of her. On the morning of the selections Zangoose called Eevee to his backyard for the last time. When she arrived, Zangoose put his face in order, serious and stern. He stood up straight, towering above Eevee like an adamant pillar. She sat in front of him, looking as eager as ever.
"Eevee. Today is the day the participants for the Hunger Games are selected. You must remember that if you get picked, keep your cool and don't panic. Every single participant is just as nervous and reluctant as you are. Try to appear friendly to others, but not in a way that makes you an easy target when the games begin. If you appear soft, they'll come after you first. Act tough but social and you'll be able to make useful partners." Zangoose ended his speech and then gestured Eevee to follow him.
"Come on, the ceremony will begin shortly. We don't want to be late."
"Ok, Master Zangoose", Eevee said cheerfully.
Oblivious as ever. She really doesn't know just how dangerous the games can be, Zangoose thought.
Riolu heard a hard knock on the door. He went to open it.
"Who's there?" he asked. Suddenly the door flew in, as if someone had kicked it hard. Riolu wasn't prepared for a door assault and therefore got slammed in the face with it. At the entrance was Mienfoo, having just kicked the door in.
"The door!" he shouted and then fell on the floor, laughing. Riolu jumped back up and walked over to where Mienfoo was rolling in joy, having stomach pains from laughing too hard. Riolu grabbed Mienfoo's leg and threw him a good ten feet away, right into a pile of trash. Mienfoo appeared from the garbage hill and walked back to Riolu. He was still smiling.
"Why the angry face, Riolu?" Mienfoo asked, holding in another burst of laughter.
"Because now I have to make you fix the door", Riolu replied. Mienfoo's expression changed in a split second. His blissful smile became a look of horror.
"Right after the ceremony, of course", Riolu added. Mienfoo wiped sweat off of his forehead.
"Thank goodness. I thought I was going to miss it. I wouldn't want to be absent if I was picked", Mienfoo said, relieved.
"Alright then. Let's get going", Riolu said, running off into the direction of the town square. Mienfoo followed him.
Kirlia was on her way to the selection ceremony. She met Sylveon on the way.
"Hey, Sylveon! How are you?" Kirlia greeted her friend and patted Sylveon on the back, making her feel a huge surge of pain take over but somehow Sylveon managed not to screech in pain. She was planning on telling Kirlia in the ceremony, but she felt like she shouldn't show any signs yet. She didn't want Kirlia to volunteer because she couldn't go. If Kirlia got picked, Sylveon would volunteer and Kirlia would be safe. But the way Kirlia would take her news was still a mystery. Sylveon had no idea how Kirlia would react when she found out. But she had to be told. Sylveon couldn't just drop dead all of a sudden, that would be suspicious.
"So, Sylveon. I know you're hiding something from me. That one night when you said that you were just worried about the selections, you were hiding something from me. My psychic powers can tell if someone is lying, and you were. I want you to tell me what's wrong. What is it you don't want me to hear?" Kirlia questioned her friend, sounding frustrated. Sylveon couldn't believe Kirlia had found out she was hiding something. She was speechless. She just stared at her friend with a shocked expression plastered on her face.
"I thought friends could share anything with each other, Sylveon. Why are you lying to me?" Kirlia continued her questioning.
"Because… Because I didn't want you to worry about me! You have enough problems, what with the Hunger Games, you don't need me to be worried about as well!" Sylveon replied, her voice cracking and the pain slowly taking over her.
"I didn't want you to find out that I was sick!" She continued. Kirlia's face went from frustration to shock in a mere second.
"S-Sick? What kind of sick?" Kirlia asked worriedly. Sylveon sighed.
"Lethal. My illness has no cure, and I'm going to die very soon. I was planning on telling you during the ceremony but since you found out, I guess it might as well be now", Sylveon said, tears flowing down on her face. She sobbed, the pain weakening her every second.
"We need to get you to a hospital!" Kirlia shouted.
"My illness cannot be cured. It won't matter where I am. In a hospital, on the street, in a ditch, being impaled in the Games… Nothing matters. I'll die no matter what anyone does" Sylveon broke it to Kirlia, who fell on the ground, completely crushed. Her eyes were filled with bitter tears. Her mouth twitched uncontrollably.
"Kirlia… Let's get to the ceremony. If you get picked, I'll volunteer so you can live another year. It'll be for the best" Sylveon suggested, putting her paw on Kirlia's shoulder. But she pushed it off.
"How could you say that?! How could you volunteer instead of me?! I want you to live as long as possible! You will stay here in the Fairy district no matter what! If you get picked, I'll go and you can't stop me!" Kirlia shouted, her voice cracking just as much as Sylveon's. The two walked the rest of the trip in silence, wishing for the same thing: Sylveon not being sick.
The selection ceremony began at 12.00 in all of the 18 districts. The representatives of every district stepped forward to announce the two participants of their district.
In the Grass district a Serperior took two names out of the bowl.
"Grovyle and Tangrowth!"
In the Fire district a Pyroar stepped forward.
"Monferno and Quilava!"
In the Water district a Crawdaunt stepped forward.
"Frogadier and Floatzel!"
In the Flying district a Braviary stepped forward.
"Skarmory and Swellow!"
In the Electric district a Manectric stepped forward.
"Electabuzz and Luxray!"
In the Dragon district a Salamence stepped forward.
"Hydreigon and Garchomp!"
In the Rock district a Rhyperior stepped forward.
"Golem and Barbaracle!"
In the Ground district a Krookodile stepped forward.
"Sandslash and Vibrava!"
In the Steel district an Aggron stepped forward.
"Magnezone and Metagross!"
In the Poison district a Garbodor stepped forward.
"Toxicroak and Drapion!"
In the Ice district an Abomasnow stepped forward.
"Weavile and Glalie!"
In the Ghost district a Gengar stepped forward.
"Froslass and Trevenant!"
In the Psychic district a Mr. Mime stepped forward.
"Gallade and Alakazam!"
In the Dark district a Liepard stepped forward.
"Absol and Inkay!"
In the Bug district a Vespiquen stepped forward.
"Scizor and Heracross!"
In the Normal district a Slaking stepped forward.
"Zangoose and…" he yawned in between the names. "…Eevee." Eevee and Zangoose looked at each other in both horror and gladness. At least Zangoose was there to keep Eevee safe.
In the Fighting district a Sawk stepped forward.
"Hawlucha and Riolu!" Riolu punched his fist into his palm and wore an angry expression on his face. I'm not going to die here, he said to himself in his head. Mienfoo put his hand on Riolu's shoulder.
"Be careful out there, buddy", Mienfoo said. Riolu nodded and walked to the stage.
In the Fairy district an Aromatisse stepped forward.
"Slurpuff and Sylveon!"
"I volunteer as tribute!" Kirlia shouted. The whole crowd stirred.
"What are you doing?" Sylveon screamed at her friend. But Kirlia didn't answer and just walked on the stage. She winked at Sylveon, who couldn't take her eyes off Kirlia. The idiot actually volunteered, she thought. She then headed off towards her house, her head hanging low, tears marking her path. When she reached her house, she wrote a letter to Kirlia, put it in her mailbox so it would be delivered and then collapsed on her stairs, her illness having finally overpowered her. Her eyes fluttered, struggling to stay open. Kirlia… Win the games… Come back alive… Find what you're looking for, she wished just until her eyes finally closed for