Hey guys… time for District 3! I'm glad to be getting the reapings moving again.
On another note, I doubt anyone will care but I recently discovered that you can edit the order of the chapters on your stories! So I took great delight in putting the reapings in order for the 35th games, as I wrote those reapings in a random order last time. Check it out if you like, I think the story looks better now!
Anyway I'm rambling, enjoy the chapter!
District 3 tributes:
Haru Summers (13)
Porter Hyde (15)
The small group of onlookers cheered and whooped as they watched the young girl perform a backflip, followed by a series of impressive somersaults. Many of them were very impressed by the performance, with some even throwing meagre change that they could spare into the pot next to her.
"Thank you, thank you!" Haru Summers stopped her acrobatics to bow to the crowd, lapping up the attention. The girl had a mischievous look about her, with eyes that were bright green and cat-like, and tawny blonde hair cut short in jagged edges around her face. It was easy to be fooled by how small she was, with many believing her to be younger than her age.
"More, more!" An onlooker shouted.
Haru was only too happy to oblige, gesturing at her friend Tim, who held up a small hoop a few metres away from Haru. "I shall now jump through this hoop!" She shouted gleefully.
"What? That's not very impressive!" A man shouted from the crowd.
"Just wait…" Haru replied, as Tim produced a lighter from his pocket, before igniting the hoop with it. The crowd gasped as the whole hoop was covered with a huge flame, flickering brightly.
"No way!" An onlooker shouted.
"You'll hurt yourself little girl!" A worried older woman exclaimed.
Haru ignored her, grinning broadly as she looked at the hoop, preparing herself mentally. She turned to the crowd. "Ladies and gentlemen… prepare to be shocked!" Haru took off in a jog towards the hoop, taking a deep breath as she came closer.
The crowd gasped as Haru dived forward, twisting into a somersault as she leapt through the hoop successfully, landing perfectly on the other side. The crowd cheered even louder than they had done before, greatly admiring the girl's courage. Haru wasn't about to miss this chance, quickly moving round the crowd with her pot, collecting change as a reward for her performance.
"Thank you… thank you!" She smiled cheekily as happy spectators tossed coins into her pot.
"Haru! We've gotta go!" Tim's voice was panicked.
Haru turned around, and to her horror saw that two peacekeepers were rapidly coming towards them, drawing their batons and shouting. Her and Tim took off sprinting together, as the crowd dispersed quickly.
"Hey! Stop right there!" One of the peacekeepers shouted.
"Don't drop the pot Haru!" Tim whispered fiercely.
"As if!" Haru growled back, not wanting to say much else to save her breath. Her and Tim were used to running away from authority, but these peacekeepers weren't giving up easily. They kept up with the kids well, even when Haru and Tim entered the District 3 market area, weaving in and out of the huge crowd of people going about their daily shopping.
"Hey!" One of the stall owners cried out in anger as Haru snatched a packet of meat from his display, not stopping running as she did so. The peacekeepers were still in hot pursuit of the two teenagers.
"They're really not giving up this time!" Tim wheezed.
"Quick- down here!" Haru gestured left towards an alleyway, the two of them taking the chance to slip away while the peacekeepers were still battling their way through the crowded market area. This was an area of district 3 that Haru and Tim knew well, quickly jumping the low wall at the end of the alleyway. With that, the two of them were finally able to stop for a breather.
"I think we lost them." Haru said through deep breaths.
"Yeah… we've got to be more careful from now on." Tim replied, still looking over his shoulder.
Haru simply laughed. "You worry too much Tim! I got us some food didn't I?" She held up the packet of meat.
"I guess." Tim shrugged. "Well done."
"Thank you!" Haru's eyes glistened. "Let's go find somewhere safe to eat…"
The two of them moved through the district carefully, keeping to the shadows and maintaining a careful watch for more peacekeepers. District 3 authorities were all too aware of Haru and Tim, the two children who had run away from the district orphanage. They soon reached the poorer areas of the district on the outskirts, finally stopping to rest behind one of the district's many electronics factories, that was mostly hidden out of sight from the general public.
It was here that Haru and Tim felt relatively safe, far away from the main district centre which the peacekeepers mostly frequented. No-one cared much about the poverty stricken citizens that lived on the outskirts.
"Let's eat!" Haru exclaimed enthusiastically, tearing open the packaged meat. It was freshly cooked, and despite having gotten cold on their escape from the peacekeepers, was an absolute luxury for these ravenous teens. The two would often go for days without eating much more than scraps from bins. There was not much talking for the next few minutes, as Haru and Tim stuffed their mouths full with the delicious meat. The two ate around three quarters of the packet before finally managing to stop themselves.
"Tim… I guess we'd better save some." Haru said sadly.
"Yeah… Tim agreed, shivering. "It's getting cold…"
"We should find some kind of shelter." Haru replied.
"Brr… ok." Tim rubbed his hands together. "You know… sometimes I wonder if we did the right thing."
"What do you mean?" Haru asked.
"Well… leaving the orphanage."
Haru was stunned. "Tim! How can you say that?"
"Well… we never have anywhere comfortable to sleep. And the peacekeepers are always on us."
Haru was not happy. "Ok, so you wanna go back to the orphanage and be bullied again? Cos I sure don't!"
"No Haru… but…"
"Tim." Haru said firmly. "We've been away from that place for a year now. And I've been so much happier since we left." Haru truly meant that, she loved having the independence to do what she wanted, even if they did face other troubles as a result of it.
"I know… I'm happier too, really." Tim admitted. "I'm just feeling a bit rough."
"It's ok Tim." Haru smiled at him, just as a small black dog came bouncing along the road towards them.
"Is that-?" Tim began.
"TORA!" Haru screamed ecstatically, running over to the dog.
Tim smiled. Tora was a stray dog that Haru had named upon encountering it a few months back, that now seemed to appear wherever they were, especially when they had food. Sure enough, as Tim made his way over to Haru, he saw her feeding the dog a bit of the stolen meat. "Haru! C'mon, we need that!"
"The doggy needs it too." Haru grinned.
Tim sighed, knowing that it was pointless arguing with Haru. "Hey…" He said. "I just remembered. It's reaping day tomorrow…"
"Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Lyle Carter!"
Porter Hyde smiled as he made his way through the crowd, jumping into the pit without hesitation as the crowd cheered their approval for him. 'The pit' as it was known amongst the underground fighting ring, was a hole in the ground measuring at roughly eight by four metres. Located on the outskirts of District 3, it went largely unnoticed by peacekeepers, allowing the teenagers that gathered here to fight undisturbed.
Right now, Porter Hyde was about to face off against one of his main rivals in the underground fighting ring, Blake Perry. Porter was well known amongst the people who came to the pit, having earned a reputation as one of the more reputable fighters. He suited fighting well, with his stocky physique making up for the shortcomings in his height. Porter also had determined brown eyes, with auburn hair that stuck up in most places. Despite his reputation, everyone knew him here as Lyle Carter.
No-one needs to know my real name. Porter thought to himself. This is my form of escapism…
Porter watched as his opponent entered the pit, growling loudly. Blake was a huge sixteen year old lump of a boy, having earned his reputation in the pit by winning fights with pure, brute strength. Porter wasn't afraid of him, but he was wary of Blake's tendency to spiral into a rage if you provoked him, which he had seen happen too many times. But he wasn't about to lose face in front of everyone watching. Other teenagers were stood around the edge of the pit, cheering for their desired victor.
A black haired boy acting as judge stepped into the middle of the pit, ready to announce the fight. "Lyle Carter. Blake Perry. You both know the rules!" The charismatic judge grinned at the crowd. "There are none!" The other teenagers laughed and cheered as the judge drew his hands up dramatically.
"Begin the fight!" He bellowed, quickly exiting the pit to allow space for the two contestants. Porter quickly adopted a defensive stance, waiting for Blake to make a quick attack like he normally did.
But it didn't come. Blake was watching Porter carefully, moving from side to side as he did so. "Kick the living shit out of him Blake!" A voice screamed from the crowd.
Porter decided to make a move, sprinting towards Blake, getting ready to deliver a fierce uppercut. Blake still didn't move, waiting for him.
Porter felt his back hit the hard ground, the cheers of the crowd echoing in his ears. He felt dazed and disorientated, Blake's attack catching him completely by surprise. As Porter lifted his head, he felt blood seeping out of his nose. He didn't have much time to dwell on this however, as he realised with panic that Blake was lumbering towards him as fast as his huge legs could carry him. Quickly working out what he was going to do, Porter lay still, waiting.
As Blake reached him, stretching his arms out, Porter drove his right leg forward, smashing it into Blake's face. The huge boy howled as blood poured from his nose, his eyes flaming as he caught sight of Porter again, who was now getting to his feet.
"You're dead shorty!" Blake bellowed, charging headlong towards his opponent. Porter was ready this time though, and deftly dodged to the side as Blake stumbled straight past him. He tried to recover for another attack, but Porter had already drawn his fist back.
Porter's right fist made contact beautifully with Blake's cheek, causing him to fall backwards, hitting the ground hard. He did not get up, with Porter standing over him, a smug look on his face as the judge came over.
"We have a winner!" The judge shouted, raising Porter's arm up triumphantly. The crowd cheered loudly for the victor, raising Porter's reputation in the pit even more. Porter waved at his fans, not being able to help a smug grin on his face.
This had been the final fight of the night, so the crowd dispersed shortly after, with some staying behind briefly to congratulate Porter on his success. Whilst most of the boys headed in the direction of the poorer neighbourhoods, Porter headed in a different direction, towards the other end of town.
On his way there, Porter stopped behind a building, pulling his rucksack off his shoulders. he was finally able to assess the damage to his nose. Porter had no mirror, but he could tell just by feeling it that it wasn't good news. His nose felt bruised and sore, and he could feel blood still glistening just below it. Porter attempted to wipe off the blood, but soon gave up, realising it didn't really matter.
"It's not like Mother or Father will notice." He muttered to himself, pulling off his scruffy shorts and t-shirt, replacing them with a smart looking shirt and black trousers. Dusting himself down, he felt considerably more presentable now. Porter resumed his walk again, soon reaching the richer part of the district.
Although District 3 was largely poor, there were certain areas that could rival District 1 standards, with Porter's family living in the richest part of the district. This was where the owners of the district electronics companies lived, the highly skilled engineers who worked on Capitol vehicles, and anyone else in close ties with the Capitol. Porter's Father himself was the most successful inventor in the district, and it was obvious to see that this paid off.
Porter arrived at his house, which was a beautiful mansion, complete with a perfectly kept front garden. As he opened the front door, Porter quickly made his way upstairs to his bedroom, not bothering to call to see who was home. He knew his Father would be at work, and his Mother no doubt occupied with her latest ridiculous hobby.
Upon entering his room, Porter felt a sense of calmness once more. His room was his place, where he was free to work and create as much as he liked. The room was a mess of wires, lightbulbs, and other assorted electronic parts. Several of his past projects lined the far end of his wall.
Feeling tired, Porter flopped onto his bed, breathing easier as he spread out onto the comfortable sheets. However, he was interrupted by a knock on his door.
"Who the fuck is that…" He muttered under his breath. "Enter!"
Two of Porter's school friends, Jonas and Oliver, came into his room. "Hello Porter." Jonas said in a drawling voice.
"How are you?" Oliver asked.
"Yes fine…" Oliver replied. "Oh dear, Porter! What happened to your face?"
"I fell over." Porter replied through gritted teeth, clutching his nose. No-one from this part of his life knew about his participation in the underground fighting, and he intended to keep it that way.
"Surely not-!" Oliver began, but Jonas cut him off.
"Now, now Oliver… we're not here to interrogate our friend Mr Hyde." He smiled at Porter. "We're here to invite you to Lorah's party. I assume you'll be attending?"
"Yes, I will be." Porter replied, returning the smile.
"Oh it's going to be the BOMB!" Oliver yelled. "It commences straight after the reaping is over, and there's rumours that the girl has spirits…"
Porter rolled his eyes, zoning out. He hated the rich kids he was forced to hang around with, and the superficial parties were even worse. And the rich in District 3 were such a minority… he identified so much better with the poorer citizens. The underground fighting ring was Porter's form of escapism from his life.
"…And Carrie's going to be there…"
Porter snapped back to attention. "Did you say Carrie's going to be there?" He asked, trying to appear casual.
"Why yes, why do you ask?" Jonas tittered.
But Porter was not paying them any attention, lost in his thoughts once again. Carrie was the one gem amongst the rich of District 3, the only girl who didn't seem as superficial as the rest. Porter quickly began thinking about his plan of action.
Tomorrow's the time… I'll make a move after the reaping tomorrow.
Reaping day was always a sombre affair in District 3, what with it being one of the poorer districts, as well as its reputation for sending tributes that mostly died in the bloodbath. The citizens gathered in the smog filled District 3 town centre, the atmosphere tense and gloomy.
This atmosphere was not reflected by the District 3 escort, who bounced onto the stage wearing a bright blue and pink dress, matching her hair with the same colours."Happy 36th Hunger Games everybody!" She beamed broadly at the crowd. "I'm sure you must all be excited this year! An excellent performance from Bree and Orren last year, both being in the final four! One of District 3's best performances ever! Let's hope for a repeat!"
The crowd hardly responded, many feeling pain upon being reminded of Bree and Orren. Some citizens had really believed that District 3 were going to have a Victor last year, a rarity for this poor district. But of course, this hadn't happened, and the district had been in a mournful state for quite sometime. Following the escort's words, sobbing could be heard particularly loudly from the Harkon family.
The escort became very uncomfortable. "Uhh… let's get on with it shall we?" She placed her hand into the female bowl. "The female tribute is… Haru Summers!"
Haru froze next to her friend Tim, hardly able to believe what she had just heard. "Haru?" Tim whispered. "Did they say your name?"
"No… surely not." Haru's voice was panicked.
"Haru Summers? Haru Summers, please come forward!"
Peacekeepers began moving towards Haru. "No!" Tim said. "No Haru, they can't take you!"
"Shut up Tim." Haru hissed. "I'm not getting dragged up there!" Haru nimbly moved through the crowd away from the peacekeepers, finally exiting it to walk up to the stage. The young girl tried to remain composed, but she couldn't help but hear the comments from onlookers.
"Look how small she is! She's not coming home."
"Poor little girl… bloodbath for sure."
Haru couldn't hide her evident shaking, and stood rather meekly next to the escort on the stage, who was swiftly moving on. "And now for the boys…." She dipped her hand in. "The male tribute is Porter Hyde!"
There was no delay this time, with Porter exiting the crowd swiftly to walk up to the stage. Upon reaching it, he shook the escort's hand, before turning to Haru.
"Hello Haru…" He said, extending his hand. "It's a pleasure to meet you."
Haru took it, feeling rather unsure of her district partner already. There was something about him she didn't trust. She noticed his nose was rather bruised, and wondered how if he was involved in some sort of trouble.
The escort was oblivious of the rather awkward handshake, having already turned to the crowd enthusiastically once more. "Your tributes for this year District 3! Happy Hunger Games!"
Hope you enjoyed! Please review and let me know what you thought :)