Acteo Sellam nervously chewed the nails of one hand, drumming on the lilac desk before him with the other. Him, Head Gamemaker? Well, not Head, exactly, but… Lieutenant, maybe. Something like that.
It's not a real set of Games, he told himself. I just have to manage Arena Two. Twelve tributes, that's all. All I have to do is get that number down to six so that Teshine can take care of the last round. Just like he always does.
He looked up sharply, studying his reflection in the shiny, gold-tinted screen on the desk. He was a thin, sallow man, almost entirely consumed by the Gamemaker's robes that he wore so nervously, yet so proudly. And now, following the President's announcement of the Seventh Quarter Quell, he had been charged with the Herculean task of building and manipulating the second of the two first-round arenas. The final round, of course, would not be left to one such as him; no, Kennza Teshine, the real Head Gamemaker, was taking care of that. But, of course, Teshine had complained to the President that there was no way he could possibly be expected to administrate three sets of Games, so the first round had been entrusted to him, Acteo, and another, older Gamemaker, Likan Crull.
Who's probably already off getting his arena built, like he should be. You have a week, Sellam. Seven days before the President expects twelve tributes to go into something you built and six to come out.
Arena. Arena. Right. I need an arena… something that's never been done before… but nothing too flashy, of course, because Teshine just has to have his own arena steal the show. But his is the final round, I suppose.
The man stood, pacing restlessly through the shadowy, empty room in which the Gamemakers did their jobs. Tomorrow, it would be bustling as the chariots rode through the Capitol, but today… today was the Gamemakers' last day off, or most of them, at least. Sellam stared around ruefully.
Well, why should I be here? I could use a little rest before this all starts, too. My hair hasn't been dyed in weeks; you can almost see the brown at the roots!
He leaned toward the shimmering surface of a sleeping terminal, checking to see if he had been correct. To his dismay, he had; clearly an appointment with his colorist was in order. His eyebrows could use some work, too, he realized irritably.
That's it. I'm leaving. Just let me have one idea I can call in to the architects, just one…
He rolled his eyes, searching the empty, humming chamber for inspiration.
Let's see. Hunger. Fighting. Like before Panem. How about something… throwback? A little steampunk, if you will?
Sellam nodded slowly, his face creased, as he refined the idea.
It could work. I don't think I've seen it done before… Teshine can't complain, not really… and what if… ooh, yes, I like that, that's very entertaining. And some mutts, too… but only in some places; they can just guess.
He straightened abruptly from his slight hunch, striding impatiently toward the viewscreen and punching it on. Its hum rose in pitch slightly, drowning out the muted buzzes of the dozing technologies crammed into the large room. The screen flickered to life with a hiss, throwing Sellam's hawklike face into sharp relief. Onscreen, a dark-haired man- actually, he looked like little more than a boy- was hunched over a cluttered desk, his head slumped forward onto his hands.
"Kenneth!" the Gamemaker barked, then again, louder, when the youth didn't move. Finally, he sat up, his face pale and haggard.
"You've decided how to kill them this year, then, Sellam? You don't have to do this, you know. Six deaths on your hands. You really think you want that? Being in charge is very different from following orders, you realize that, right?" The man's accent was peculiar.
Acteo's eyes narrowed. "Oh, it will be my idea, but you'll be the one who designs the arena. Make it good."
"Oh, I will. You know I always do. So what's it to be this year?"
Hey there. I apologize for my little prologue's generous melodrama; I couldn't resist. So, if you've already read this account's profile, you probably already know how this is going to go down, and you can just skip ahead. If not, here are the rules to this year's Quarter Quell, the 175th Hunger Games:
The Reaping will be as usual, with one male and one female chosen from each District. However, the Games will be run a bit… tournament-style, if you will. District 2, 4, 8, 6, 9, and 3 will be in Arena Two, otherwise known as this fic. If you wanted one of the other Districts, I advise you to head over to the other fic on this profile, which is Arena One, containing the remaining Districts. The other fic will be authored by chickenwinglegolas, who is a brilliant writer, so don't choose your fic based on the author; go by the District you're interested in.
But I digress. These 12 tributes will fight in Arena Two until exactly 6 of them are left standing, at which point they will be called to make their way to the Cornucopia, where they will be picked up and taken to the Capitol. Another round of interviews, and probably several nervous breakdowns, will take place, before the 6 surviving tributes will be put into Arena Three (presumably created by our good friend Kennza Teshine) to fight it out among themselves and with the surviving 6 from Arena One. So 12 total tributes will make it to Arena Three. The last tribute standing is, as usual, the Victor.
Don't get it? I don't blame you. PM either this profile, chickenwinglegolas, or FoalyWinsForever (That's me if anyone didn't know) with any questions.
Oh, and there won't be any sponsoring because everyone who's written one of these says it's way more trouble than it's worth. You'll just have to rely on flighty Capitol fancies… and my dubious mood swings. Heheheh.
So, the tributes. I kindly request that you read my Guide to Not Making Your Tribute Suck before submitting, Chapter Three in particular if you don't feel like reading the whole shebang.
A few OCs of mine may show up to fill any spots still vacant by Sunday. They won't win, of course, although they'll have the same chance as anyone to make it to the second round, because otherwise that wouldn't really be fair to anyone allied with them. I humbly request that no one submit a male for District Nine, although of course if you do and he actually has something to do with its (apparently debatable) industry, I will of course gladly boot my OC out.
I don't actually have any stock female characters, so I ask that if you're torn about whom to submit, try to help me fill my female roster first. District 2, 4, 8, 6, 9, and 3 only though, remember.
I will never actually decide to kill your character. Deaths will literally be drawn out of a hat. However, the more likely it is that your character would die at a given time, the more times your name will go in. (So if they're holed up pretty comfortably, probably only one or two times. If they're getting chased by the Careers… yeah, there could be some trouble there.)
Wow, this is a LONG author's note. I'm almost done, I promise. I just have to include the most important thing of all: the tribute form! (Dum dududummm!) And here it is:
Do you want me to write their reaping, train ride, stylist/chariot ride, training, or interview?
Feelings Toward Capitol:
Anything else I should know:
Ooh, one more thing. Please DO NOT leave this information in a review. Just review with their name, District, age, and gender, and PM the rest. (But include that stuff in the PM too or I'll get seriously confused!) Because who doesn't like surprises? :D I can't wait.