Chapter 1: The Date I'll Always Remember
I had heard about movies where the boy and the girl weren't allowed to see each other because it's forbidden, but they do it anyway. I never thought that I would be living that way after one date with a boy I liked. It had started 3 months ago, when a boy from District 12 came to my home, District 2. He was attractive- that was the first thing I noticed. Stunning blond hair that fell in his eyes, and muscles that had to be gained doing something awesome. I was walking to the training center, getting ready to work harder then I had ever worked before. There were only 5 more months until the 88th Annual Hunger Games. My family had a history of winning things. We are so good that my parents, Cato and Clove, had won the Games and gone down in history as the first people to have won the Games with two other tributes under a brand new rule that had been developed then. The rule was that if two districts had become allies, and both the boy and female tributes were alive, all 4 people could win. Only two districts though.
My parents had killed the rest of their allies except two- Peeta Mellark and Katniss Everdeen. They were both from District 12, and they proved to be pretty useful, so they were kept around. The four of them won and went back to their districts. Katniss and Peeta got married the same year, and so did my parents. And 14 years later, here I was getting ready to be Reaped. I was happy that Katniss and Peeta had a kid too, because then I could kill them off in some violent manner.
You are probably confused right now, thinking why in the world would she kill off her parents allies kid? Well, here's your answer- my parents hated them now. They had gotten their weddings over and done with, and the Capitol had insisted that the weddings be on the same day. They had a double ceremony, and they all hugged and kissed and made it look like they were all best friends. But in reality, all of them hated the other district. Their son was born a few months after they were married, and I was born a month after apparently, on August 13th. District 2 and District 12 would always be enemies to each other. That was the way it worked.
Since my parents hate Katniss and Peeta, so do I, and technically, I would hate their kids too. If they got Reaped, I would kill them gladly and make my parents proud. Like that would be a challenge. I was an only child, and I'll admit it, I was spoiled rotten. Just like any other Victor's kid. I was their pride and joy, because I had my mom's skill with knives, and my dad's awesome, almost sexy looks. Yes, I just called my dad sexy. Look at a picture of him and you'll think the same thing- Cato Hirsch is hot.
Anyway, back to the boy. I was walking down the street, minding my own business, and of course, he ran into me while carrying something. I fell over and so did he. I got up and cussed him out with every word I knew, because now I would need to figure out why he ran into me, which would make me late for training…again.
"Well, you have quite the vocabulary for a girl." He laughed.
"Don't laugh at me. I'm not funny. I can kill you in a second, so back off. "I snapped.
"Well, I'm sorry; I'm not from his district. My name is Luke. I'm from District 12. I'm really sorry." He replied, blushing.
EW, Guys don't blush. At least, a real man wouldn't. Or maybe he would. My dad doesn't.
"Well, that's nice; I guess I forgive you, now I need to go train. So, bye then!" I responded.
I had 20 minutes to get to the training center, and it would take 17 to get there.
"Wait, can I at least know your name?" He asked.
"My name is Elizabeth." I shouted over my shoulder.
Then I kept walking away faster. I didn't want some stupid creep following me.
I guess my opinion didn't matter, because Luke followed me all the way to the Training Center. I sprinted inside and to my locker, where I dropped my stuff in and ran out to the mats. I was the only one here right now. My trainer was my dad today, so I knew that I needed to rush. He'd pin me to the ground and smack me repeatedly if I was late. My face still hurt from yesterday. I got there just in time.
"Don't shoot! I'm here and not late at all!" I shrieked.
My dad looked over at me, rolling his eyes. "Come on, let's get sparring." He replied.
Oh, how I hated sparring. My dad was vicious, always known as a killing machine. It's extremely hard to take him down. Only once has someone gotten him down while sparring, and it was my mom. But I don't think he was trying to get her off. They rolled on the floor for 30 seconds, and then my mom grabbed my dad's neck and shouted "Dead!" instead of actually snapping his neck, which I know she would do.
I love my dad, but he is a brutal teacher. My mom is barely better, but she doesn't make me spar as much as my dad. And neither one of them likes me to call them mom or dad during training, so I call them Cato and Clove. I stand on my edge of the mat and he stands on his. He makes the call and lunges at me. I slide between his legs and make a stab with a knife that has no blade in his lower shin. We train with weapons that aren't weapons. The handles of knives, bows without arrows, stuff like that. Anyway, I make the stab in a place I know is very fleshy. It would leave a gushing, bloody mess, and my dad reacts like such. He falls on the ground and lies there, and I put my knees on his shoulders like I saw my mom do to Katniss before they were allies. Before she realized she needed her. I take my fake knife and trace it around his lips, also something my mom did.
"You're dead." I call out.
"Were you watching the old Hunger Games on the DVD again?" Cato asked.
"It's only for the 123rd time." I reply.
"Why would you watch that again?" My dad asks.
"I need to get prepared for going up against vicious tributes, like you and mom." I reply automatically.
My answer has been the same the last 122 times he's asked me this question.
"You'll be the most vicious of any of them." He replied, forming a little smile.
The story I was just using moves out of is one that should be told. Claudius Templesmith had made the announcement that there was going to be a feast to provide a supply for the remaining tributes that they desperately needed. For my parents, it had been body armor that saved them and kept them even more invincible. Anyway, my mom was at the feast, and my dad was in the surrounding woods keeping watch. My mom tackled Katniss and was now sitting on her with the same position I was doing with my dad during our sparring. She was going to kill Katniss slowly and painfully, like everyone in District 2 is trained to. She was taunting and making comments about how she had killed Katniss' ally, Rue. Rue had been a 12 year old girl from District 11, the youngest in that year's Games. My mom was about to cut Katniss lips off, and then the tribute boy from District 11, named Thresh, had come and yanked her off the ground.
He yelled at her and asked if she had killed Rue, and my mom said no. It was the truth. Another tribute named Marvel had killed her with a spear thrown through her stomach. My mom tried and tried to plead and escape, but Thresh was not letting up. He held a rock in his hand that he was going to smash her skull with. That is, if Katniss hadn't have saved her.
Katniss got up with the little strength she still had, and she stabbed Thresh with Clove's knife, which had been still lying next to her. Thresh fell over and the cannon that signaled deaths shot. My mom declared at that moment that she and Peeta were now allied with her and my dad. And they had together killed everyone else. They had won.
I wanted to be as amazing as my mom was. I wanted to be like my dad too, but more like my mom, who wasn't so scary good at killing people. I didn't want to be known as the girl who killed people. If anything, I wanted to be known as the daughter of the great Cato and Clove Hirsch and the winner of the 89th Hunger Games.
"You can leave now. I'm having pains, so no more training today." My dad interrupted my thoughts.
I hugged my dad, gave him a quick peck on the cheek and went back out the door to go home to our house in the Victor's Village.
And guess who greeted me at the door? Luke the creeper was outside the door to talk to me. The problem was that my boyfriend at the time, Marcus, was there too.
He wrapped his arms around my neck. Even after training, my training wasn't finished. Marcus made sure of that. I was tired of it today.
"You better get me off, or I'll kill you." He chuckled.
Like I said, I was pissed off. He usually won these things, getting to the movement where he could kill me, but didn't. Each time he did though, I got a .55% more doubtful that he would spare me.
I put my hands on his wrists, and ducked down, flipping him over my shoulders and pushing him to the ground. I put my foot on his chest.
"Stop trying to kill me. You're my boyfriend, not a tribute." I snapped.
"Not yet anyway, but I will be a tribute. And you can bet that the first person I kill will be a scrawny little girl like you." He smirked.
"Hey, you're the one on the ground beaten by a girl." I replied.
I let him up again. "We're over! Go home!" I shouted.
He ran the other way. I started walking, and Luke followed.
"You're amazing." Luke breathed.
"I know. It's why I train every day. I've trained since I turned 3."I replied.
"Um…I was wondering, I'm going to be here a few days. So, do you want to get some dinner with me tonight?" Luke asked.
I thought about the plans I had tonight. My parents were having a date tonight, so I could go wherever I wanted really, and I did not want to stay home with them once they got home...nobody deserves that fate.
"Sure. I'd love to go to dinner with you tonight." I replied.
We agreed to meeting that night at 6:30 right we were standing, so I walked home feeling pretty satisfied.
I walked through the front door of my house and right into our living room, plopping down on the couch. I flipped on the TV, but nothing good was on. I flipped it off and went upstairs to my huge bedroom looking through my closet to figure out what to wear tonight on my date.
I settled on a sparkly black tank top and a pair of my mom's old army green Capri's. They're the same pair that she wore in the Games. I had cut them to make Capri's, because the bottoms were so stained with dirt and blood that I couldn't wash it off. I paused a moment, looking at the other things in my room. I had a lot of useless crap that I didn't need. I had a lot of weaponry in case someone broke in. Even though it was against the rules of the Hunger Games, I had my mom's special curved knife on my dresser ready to be shoved into my bra and taken into the arena with me.
"Liz, is that you?" My mother calls from the hall.
"Yes it is. Can you come in my room for a second?" I reply.
My mom walks into my room and hugs me a minute.
"What's up, kiddo?" She asks.
"Well, I have a date tonight, and I picked out an outfit that I think will work-" I show her my outfit. "Opinion?" I ask.
She thinks for a second, then rifles through my closet to pull out a pair of black sequined heels that look perfect with the top. "Now you have an outfit." She smiles.
I love my mom's smile. She looks even more youthful when she smiles. Anyone who's seen my mom says she looks exactly the way she looked in the Games, and for once, I agree. She has the same jet black hair and almond shaped deep grey eyes. And even though the games were 14 years ago, she still looks like she did then.
I check my watch for the time, 6pm already. I go to my bathroom and shower quickly. Then I dry my hair and braid it down my back, like I've seen Katniss Everdeen's. I wonder if my mom will notice. Then I pull on my clothes and stand in front of my mirror.
Of course, I look wonderful.
I apply my green eye shadow and black mascara and my red lipstick, and then I'm out and down the steps. 15 minutes until my date. It takes 17 to get there, I remember.
I try and shuffle out the door, but my mom catches me.
"Elizabeth Rue Hirsch, what did you do to your hair?" My mom demands.
"I braided it." I reply.
"You know how we feel about you braiding your hair like that. People will think you're with District 12, and then we'll all get in trouble." My dad says, coming in next to my mom.
"Fine, I'll fix it."I sigh.
My dad smirks. It's his trademark thing. My mom said he did it all the time in the Capitol and in the games in general. He thought he was so hot back when he was 17. He still does. And I never argue with him when he says it.
I undo my hair and pull it into a messy high ponytail.
"I don't understand why I can't wear my hair like Katniss', but yet I have a middle name that is for the tribute from District 11." I sigh.
"Katniss and I agreed that we would use the name of the tribute we felt most horrible about killing as the middle name for our first child. I chose Rue. Katniss chose Thresh." My mom replies.
I walk out the door before my parents start an argument and in 17 minutes, there I am in front of Luke.
"Sorry I'm late. My parents were giving me a hard time." I smile at him.
He looks good. He's wearing a white shirt and black pants, looking like someone…someone important. Oh, now I remember. He looked like a mini Peeta.
"Ready to go?" He asks.
"Yeah. Do you know where we're going?" I ask back.
"No." He says, blushing again. This time it's kind of cute.
"I'll lead the way to somewhere."I laugh.
I take his hand and guide him down into the town square and to the left, to a little restaurant I always come to. It's a sort of hangout for all the training tributes, otherwise known as the kids of all the Victors, some of which aren't kids anymore.
A waiter takes us to our table and I order for both of us immediately, because I know what's good here. Luke doesn't seem to mind. We make some small talk and take about our home districts, him being originally from District 12 and then moving to District 13 after 12 was destroyed.
"How old are you?" I ask.
"I'm 14. How about you?" He replied.
"I'm 14 too. I was born August 13th." I reply, glad that we have something in common.
"I was born July 13th!" He exclaims.
This is creepy. Peeta and Katniss' son was born a month before me. So is Luke. Must be a coincidence.
I think over all the information I have about Katniss and Peeta. I make a list in my head. They won the 74th Hunger Games. They have a son born July 13th. They live in District 13, but used to live in District 12. Their last name would be Mellark. That's all I can think of.
"So, here's a weird question. I never found out your last name. What is it?" Luke asks.
"My last name is Hirsch." I reply.
"Like….Cato and Clove Hirsch?" He responded.
"Yes. They are my parents." I chuckle.
It's always funny when people first find out Cato and Clove are my parents.
Luke bites his lip.
"What's wrong? Oh,I know, you're starstruck from meeting a victor's child, right?" I say calmly.
"No. That's not it at all. I am so sorry, Elizabeth. I have to go." He says, jumping up from his chair like it's on fire.
"Why?" I ask, worried that I did something wrong. I had decided I like Luke, and that I wanted him to be my boyfriend.
"We…we can't see each other anymore." He gasps; he's at a loss for words.
We're now in front of the restaurant talking.
"Why can't we?" I ask angrily.
"We run in different circles." He says simply.
"Just because I'm famous does not mean we can't date." I add.
"Well, I'm famous too. My full name is Luke Thresh Mellark." Luke whispers to me.
I take a moment to register this. He is 14 years old, like me. He is one month older than me, just like Peeta and Katniss' son. He has the same last name as Peeta and Katniss. His middle name is Thresh, like their son. He looks like Peeta. It all fits now.
Luke is supposed to be my worst enemy. He isn't similar to Peeta….he's his son.