Hello all! This is my first fanfiction, so I am extra grateful to you for reading it. Reviews would be amazing, and I will give you a virtual brownie for using your time to write one. ;) This story is actually based off a dream I had and wrote down that morning, so it will go up fast! Hope you enjoy.

DISCLAIMER: I do not own the Hunger Games, however much I envy Suzanne Collins for that honor. :)


Twenty-six years ago, the districts' rebellion was crushed, and the system of the Hunger Games was instilled. Punishment for trying to split a harmonious nation, the Capitol called it. I can understand it- I mean, what country wants to be divided against itself? I even admired its sophistication; it provided entertainment for loyal Capitol citizens and punishments for the districts. That is, I admired it until last year, the Quarter Quell, where we were forced to vote on the tributes who would play in the Hunger Games. My life was forever sorrowful after those votes were counted.

In District Five, we produce power for the Capitol, so we have a lot of extra time and people. Since most of that 'extra' goes to education, District Five's schools rival even the Capitol's. Some genius decided that we should choose the strongest and smartest kids- the ones with the best chances of winning. Two eighteen-year-olds were sent as tributes, and one of them was my brother. I remember feeling so proud when we saw his training score flashed onscreen, a huge, glowing ten. The arena was a barren island, with only thick mists as cover. Everything for survival was heaped in the Cornucopia, and only the ten-foot radius around the golden horn was free from poisonous, aggressive muttations. Fourteen died in the initial battle, and the four Careers who came out alive were bathed in blood, coining the phrase 'initial bloodbath'. Our instructors cringed at the gory scene unfolded. One of the Careers split a skull with his heavy mace, causing a scream to wrench forth from the classroom next to mine. Our female tribute was down, and so were my classmates' spirits. I watched as my dear brother Orion sliced his way to the Cornucopia with a single spearhead, even cutting down one of the Careers! Night was beginning to fall, and he managed to procure a throwing axe and a pack of food and water. His break for the mists was halted when a giant snake-mutt reared up in front of him. It was swiftly beheaded, but not swiftly enough. A career's blade flew from behind and lodged itself into Orion's back. His cannon roared before my mother and I, safely at home, had time to scream. Any respect I once had for the Games vanished, killed by the same knife as my brother.

"Sol?" I snap back to the present. My mother motions to the barren field on the right. "Watch out for the geyser fields." District Five has five sectors, one for each type of energy we produce. My family lives in Solar, and many of the children are given names that go with their sector's theme. We in Solar are furthest from the black fumes of Coal and therefore furthest from the Justice Building. Traveling there means walking through Wind, Geothermal, and most of Coal. We only make this exhausting journey on Reaping Day. I spend the remainder of the walk thinking about my brother, and how I should aspire to not earn his fate.

At the reaping, I stand with perhaps three hundred other girls on a fenced- off platform. I locate my closest friend Bright and we stand together near the back of the crowd, jostling each other and looking over the other girls who might be taken to slaughter. Well, I am, anyway; Bright is jabbering away in my ear about the 'cute' boys in another fenced-off area on the other side of the square. The smokestacks that usually pump coal fumes into the air are quiet. The capitol representative who will select the tributes' names is strutting around another stage. This one is done with gaudy paint and yards of fabric so colorful it pains my eyes. So is his stage. Last year's reaper was promoted to one of the Career districts for 'choosing' such handsome tributes. This one starts into his cheery spiel about the honor of being reaped for the Games, the importance of duty, blah blah blah. I only tune back in when he squeals, "Ladies first!" His tattooed fingers reach into the girls' ball and close around a slip of paper. The girls around me seem to draw a collective breath as the man unfolds it. "Sol Ebony!" That's a nice name. Pity she'll-

That's me. My mother screams. Both of her children, lost to the Games. Bright nudges me forward, and I stagger down the steps from my platform and across to the man from the Capitol. I'm numb from shock. No one volunteers. Bright's eyes are filling up with tears. Should I kill myself now, or let someone else do it later? Later, definitely. Live while you can. The man pulls a slip of paper from the boys' bowl.

"Falcon Mountcliff!" A dark-haired boy pushes his way up to the representative. He looks to be about seventeen, about six feet tall, and seriously muscular. I see a girl start sobbing as he faces the crowd. His sister? Maybe his girlfriend? The rest of the ceremony is a blur. My mother comes to visit me in the hour before they ship us to the Capitol. For at least twenty minutes, we simply sit crying and hugging each other. Then she stands, kisses my forehead, and turns to leave.

"I love you, Sol," she whispers. I tell her I love her too. Bright charges in next, and she babbles on about how I will definitely win and it's too bad Falcon got reaped because she thinks he's cute and then she hugs me and breezes out again. Then my father strides into the room. I don't get to see him much, since he works in the power plants. The last twenty minutes are spent in much the same way as the first. Finally the guard tells him to leave.

"I love you, Dad." He gives me one last kiss, and brushes a tear from my eye.

"Be strong, Sol," he manages. Then I hear a train whistle and the guards hustle me away from my life.


There you go, first chapter! Again, thanks for reading and reviews are appreciated. :)