So, this is my first song-fic. Based off of the song "Hello" by Evanescence. The lyrics will be in italics before or after each chapter. I hope you enjoy! Note: I do not own this song or the Hunger Games.
Playground school bell rings again…
BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!
I whiz around, doing a 360 and watch as a giant plume of fire, smoke, and debris lifts into the air from where our camp was set up. Clove comes out of nowhere from the bushes and is at my side, and we exchange looks and the ground around us rumbles. It's loud, but we're at a distance where it won't hurt. Marvel comes behind us next.
"What the hell was that?" he snarls.
I tighten my grip around my spear and clench my teeth. "Something, better yet, someone activated the mines."
Clove narrows her eyes. "We had best check it out."
We move out, and follow our trail back to camp, but we stumble a bit more since we're in a hurry. Clove and I are the first to emerge from the trees, Marvel at our tail, when I look at the camp in horror. Everything, our food, supplies, and key to survival, all laid in piles of rubble, debris still falling in flames from the sky. Jonah, our guard boy from District 3, is coughing, rubbing his eyes.
"C-Cato-" he coughs out.
I kick a piece of I think used to be a crate, and it clatters over to his feet. "What the hell did you do?" I sneer.
Jonah gulps, his Adam's Apple bobbing up and down on his throat. I'm ready to gut him, when he picks up a stone and throws it where the mines were set. They all went off. Everything destroyed. I eye Clove and Marvel trying to find pickings through the rubble but by the looks on their faces, they're found nothing.
Jonah starts to head to the woods when I grab him by the neck in a headlock from behind. "You said you knew what you were doing!" I snarl, tightening my grip around his neck.
He starts coughing, his scrawny arms trying to pull my arm away. I only tighten harder. "C-Cato!" he pleads. "I didn't mean for this-"
"They were supposed to kill thieves, not the bounty! I KNEW I SHOULD HAVE KILLED YOU ON THE SPOT."
I pull my arm back and feel his neck snap against my skin. Blood starts draining into his mouth and I drop his head to the ground, watching him drown in his own blood. "YOU WORTHLESS SWINE!" I scream into the air. "WHO DID THIS? COME OUT HERE, SHOW YOURSELF!"
I get no response and this angers me even more, when I feel an arm grip my shoulder. I draw my blade and spin around, ready to decapitate anyone who crosses my path, when I see Clove's light face staring back at me with her black jade eyes. "Cato. Get a grip. The bomber is dead. There is no way they could have walked across those mines and lived through the explosion. We'll see who it was from the sky tonight and work from their tomorrow!"
"She's right Cato. We should hunt."
I shake Clove's arm away from me and snap a spear with my bare fists. "Alright, let's hunt. Kill anything that moves. Gut anything that breathes."
Clove and I pull out our night vision glasses and Marvel lights a torch with a dying flame from the burning rubble. We move into the darkness of the woods. I don't think the Gamemakers will try anything with the action that has just happened. But I'm ready for anything.
When we get about a mile from our ruined camp I conclude that there is nothing in this part of the woods. It seems as if we are being played with, and all the wildlife has disappeared. I throw a knife into a tree in frustration. "This is not working. If we want food we need to split up and cover more ground. Marvel you go west. Clove you-"
Clove stands her ground. "I'm not leaving you alone. You'll go mad and might stab one of us." I hate admitting she's right, because she always is. I just roll my eyes and she smirks and walks over by me. "Marvel just head west and we'll meet back at the lake by morning…"
We're interrupted by the anthem and the seal of Panem appears into the clear night sky. Our eyes stare down as we watch the images projected. Jonah, and that kid from 10 that we killed this morning. Mellark couldn't have done the bombing, I cut him miles away from here, and he must almost be dead. And something tells me that there is only one out to get me. Katniss Everdeen. And when I see her, I'll make her wish she had never been conceived.
"The bomber is alive," Marvel says.
"What are you still doing here? Get to the west woods. I change my mind, if you see any tribute, bring them back to me. I'll figure out who it was."
Marvel grins evilly and takes west while Clove and I vanish in the opposite direction.
"Who do you think it was?" Clove asks me.
She knows I don't mean Peeta. "I hate that bitch," Clove says, sending a knife into an oak tree that's about thirty yards from where we stood. "How do you think she did it?"
I think for a moment. "She must have done it from a distance." That's when it hit me. It takes a moment to register but I think I know. "That day she sent the tracker jackers down! Peeta and I went back and she had scavenged Glimmer's bow and quiver from her corpse."
Clove pulled her glasses off, looking into my eyes, her eyes widened in realization. "She makes me sick. She must have shot at the pyramid. It all makes sense. Her eleven in training!" She then surprisingly laughs. "Oh well. Maybe when her star-crossed lover bleeds himself to skin and bones she'll give up. She can't play this game forever."
I laugh with her. "This isn't her game." I look to the sky. "It won't be long now."
Clove smiles and then her face changes and she yawns deeply. "Do you really want to hunt? I think Marvel can handle himself. He hasn't been doing much lately."
I shrugged. "Not like he will be around much longer."
Clove halfway registers what I mean and slumps down against a tree. "Mind taking first watch?"
I simply nod. I'm not tired anyway, I'm fully alert. And I'm aware that the air around us is cooling. I rip into my pack and find my flint. I look to Clove and shrug. "If anyone comes by, I'll wake you." She doesn't refuse; I can already see the Goosebumps forming on her arm. I find some foliage to ignite and watch as Clove drifts away into sleep. I sit up with my back against the tree, a spear at my side, ready to send into someone who dared to come.
I twiddle with my thumbs, my ears listening and I glace to the woods, my thumbs, and then eventually find myself looking at Clove.
I first met her on the first day of grade school when we were maybe five. She had an older brother, Tony, who had won the games at sixteen years old so she and her family were living in the Victor's Village already. - As for me? Well, we had money but we weren't filthy rich. My father was a proud man though, and he bragged about himself, like he had more gold than the president. But he had this dream of me being a winner of the Hunger Games. I had that dream too. He was an ex-Peacekeeper so after he retired he married and carried on as usual. – I saw Clove come in with Tony and I remember her desk being assigned next too mine. Clove was always an annoying kid, since she was nerdy smart and I tried avoiding her a lot, and me and my buds, we made fun of her.
But when we came back to school at age sixteen after out summer break something had changed. She wasn't a squally little girl anymore, obsessed with her books. Her brother taught her to train secretly. And she was brilliant. She beat all of the girls in foot races for our gym classes, and even some of the boys. People didn't take dirt about her anymore. She was smart, strong, witty, and… breathtakingly beautiful after she hit puberty.
And I started to notice her. But I didn't want to notice her. I wanted to believe she was still that little nerdy kid. So when reaping day came, her name was called, and I couldn't stand it. I wanted to be crowned victor. I volunteered.
But then, in the days that followed, things started happening. We spoke to each other. We both like similar things. We have the same differences. We became allies. We've got each other's backs more and more often. And I'm worried I'll begin to fall for her
I must have dozed off because when my eyes flutter open, it's dawn. Clove's still in her same position, still asleep, and I look over her. For some reason, I'm starting to worry that we'll be the last two left in the arena. That we'll end up killing each other. But then I shake my head. I can't be weakened by love. It bit Peeta Mellark back, hard. I rouse Clove awake and she sits up.
"It's freezing, you put the fire out?"
It must have gone out in the wind last night. When I fell asleep… "Yeah, I did."
Clove looked to the sky. "It's past sunrise; we were supposed to meet Marvel. Why didn't you wake me up?"
"Don't princesses need their beauty sleep?" I say, rolling my eyes.
Clove throws a clump of dirt at my face. "You jerk, you fell asleep didn't you!"
I think I'm beet red because once again she's right. "No, I didn't! Besides, Marvel's fine."
"Well my stomach isn't. Come one, we've spent too much time out here anyway," Clove grumbles, getting up. "It's going to take us an hour to get back."
I turn my head, mimicking her smartalic-ness. "How much longer are we putting up with Marvel anyway? He's been as much use as a stick for a weapon."
Clove shrugged. "I don't know."
I laugh. "That's a first." Clove opens her mouth in protest but I stop her because I don't really want to hear another comeback. "I say if he doesn't have any food we kill him today."
Clove smirked. "I say we kill him even if he does have food."
"Wow, I thought you had a heart for a minute," I chuckle.
"I thought you were going soft."
"Yeah right." I could never be soft.
"Whatever." She disagrees.
It's about midday when we reach the lake. There are still fumes from the piles of rubble. Marvel is nowhere in sight. Clove glances at me and we poke around the debris, looking for anything we may salvage. Again, we find nothing. "Do you have any food in your pack?" I ask.
Clove nods. "Some raisons and half of an oatmeal cookie. I think I have some water too."
"I might have a granola bar. My canteens full though." I can hear my stomach growl for the first time since I entered the arena. "Damnit Marvel, where are you?"
My response is a cannon fire. Clove's head zips too mine and we exchange looks. "Who do you think it is?" she asked.
I open my mouth to reply and another one fires. That's two deaths in one minute.
"Screw waiting for Marvel," I say. "Let's get out of the open."
Clove doesn't argue and we take to the woods.
We wait all day for any signs of Marvel. Clove and I hunt throughout the day. We don't recognize many roots or plants and we decide that we don't want to risk any poisoning so we try fishing in a stream. We're rewarded with two small trout. We eat the fish after nightfall when the anthem shows us Marvel's face. Soon after, the little girl from District 11 shows up.
"She was allies with Katniss," Clove says.
So that's it. Marvel must have captured her little ally and she killed him. It's the only way the scenario made sense. But then I think…
"I wonder why Mellark isn't dead yet."
Clove is about to give her opinion when the whole arena is amplified and Claudius Templesmith's voice fills the air.
"Congratulations to the remaining six tributes in the 74th Hunger Games! I have an announcement to make! There has been a change in rules. Now listen close. This year, both tributes, of they are form the same district may win. I repeat. Two may win this year if they are from the same district! Good luck!"
Let the games begin.