A New Dawn: Newcomb Birambau, District 3 Male Tribute

Maps of the Future

When I woke up in the morning, the only person who was awake yet was Callia, since she'd been on watch. Even if she hadn't been, it wouldn't have come as that much of a shock that she was up. It seemed like it was a bit before dawn-there were still stars out, and the sky was just starting to give in to that part-night-part-day shade of blue, sort of like Callia's eyes-and I didn't know why I'd woken up after such a short amount of time, or, at least, what seemed like it. "Morning," I said, careful not to wake the others. I walked over to where she was, which was a bit closer to the stream. And, no, it did not, in fact, escape my notice that she still had the knife in her hand.

She jumped a bit, but then relaxed. "Morning."

"I can watch now, if you want to get some sleep," I offered, sitting down next to her and noting that she seemed like she could use a good night's rest. "I'm not that tired." That last part was definitely a lie.

She shrugged. "I'm all right. Thanks for offering, though." Be frustrating, then.

After that, I stayed up anyways, unable to go back to sleep and wanting to spend some time with Callia when our allies weren't... awake. I felt sort of... jumpy. For once, I felt the need to talk, to say something, anything, just to break the silence. It was sort of weird to sit there next to a person who was holding a knife in a place where she was allowed (encouraged) to kill you, and not say anything at all. Not that I thought that Callia was going to break off the alliance. I guessed that I probably trusted her the most, above Namitha and Link, partially because she was the only person that I'd ever really asked to be allies with. Plus, I couldn't deny that I wanted her to win the Games. Maybe that was why I was feeling nervous...

"So, what's on the agenda for today?" I asked, hoping it wasn't too much of a stupid thing to say, which wasn't a feeling I got too often.

Not even looking at me, she answered, "I figured that we could try to map out the area."

"Sounds good," I agreed. It really was a great plan. "Are you planning on waking the other two at any point?" I didn't want her to, but I knew we'd have to, eventually.

"Probably around dawn or something," Callia said. "I mean, there's no sense in wasting daylight."

"Very true." My talkative phase was apparently over. I'd run out of things to say already. But I wanted to ask something else.

"So... your uncle; he's the mayor, right?"

"Of District Three, yes," Callia said absently, quietly.

Stupid! I chided myself. Of course her uncle's the mayor! You both live in Three, remember?

"And... um..." I was freezing up again, just like I always did. I was so sick of this.

"And... what?" Callia asked softly. It was weird-she was probably the person that was the reason why I kept freezing up, but her presence was somehow reassuring.

"Isn't it weird," I managed to start, "that we must've been going to school together since we were five, but we never met until we were both picked-" to die "-for the Games?"

Callia smiled, almost encouraginly, and somehow I felt proud that I was the reason that she did. "I guess it is. The Games have their way of bringing people together, huh?"

"Yeah," I agreed.

We sat in silence, peacefully, until the sun really started to rise and the light of a new dawn washed over us.

Maybe today'd be the day that I managed to tell her how I really felt.