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DISCLAIMER:

There are several concepts, characters, and real life things that I use and/or mention in this chapter that I don't own. These include but are not limited to the Hunger Games, District Four, Gamemakers, and iPad.

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A/N: I know, I know, I haven't posted anything in forever. But it's here now.

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IN THIS CHAPTER: Moderate adult language (after Finnick's tirade in the beginning there's nothing), Mild violence

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"You didn't become a f—ing sex slave at sixteen, watch your mother die because you didn't want to become a pansexual prostitute[1], fall in love with your victor whose mental stability is questionable, all the while spending a quarter of each year screwing a whole bunch of strangers senseless every f—ing day, so don't you dare tell me you understand!" Finnick yells from across the room before storming out.

Poor kid. This hasn't been a good year for him. At all. And he's right. I probably don't understand. Things were very different back in my day. I was only the twelfth victor, and one of the first official careers; the first group of kids to start career training in District Four were only two years older than me. My class was the first to have the Training Center since it took almost two years to build; buying the rights to make Orsinia public property, building in all the training rooms, gathering the weapons and technology. That first year in the training center, the eighth Games, and we were overflowing with district pride. The reaping took almost an hour because the system for volunteering wasn't made to compensate for that many volunteers. Twenty boys, as young as fifteen up to just months before nineteen all clamoring toward the stage. We were the unbelievable, the undefeatable. We were District Four. They ended up taking a seventeen year old boy and a eighteen year old girl. Two of the best the district had to offer. They were dressed as Poseidon and Amphitrite for the Opening Ceremonies and really acted like they were gods, above everyone else. They dominated training with a ten and eleven, and then gained the admiration of the entire Capitol with their enthusiasm and confidence for the Games. Too bad it didn't last in the arena. The tributes from District 7 were always a force to be contended with back in those days, not careers or anything, but since the careers were just forming at the time there were some major competitors from lower districts. Both of them were extremely proficient with their district's signature weapon, the axe, and took on the two from Four and the boy from One, the remainder of the careers at the time. All three sustained major but not fatal weapons from the axes before they were able to kill the two Seven's. They got in a argument about who's fault it was and all three split up. The boy from Four died almost immediately from blood loss because he didn't know how to make a good tourniquet. The boy from One died two days later from blood poisoning. The girl survived the wounds, but ended up falling forty feet to her death after trying to climb a tree that obviously couldn't hold her weight. After that they added the Sustenance and Healing classes as well as making it compulsory that you took one survival class each semester.

I went four years later, at sixteen. I was considering volunteering anyway, but when Molley Shorley, the petite twelve year old who was like a little sister or daughter to pretty much every teen and adult in the district, was chosen, I decided I was definitely going. I could do this. My district partner was a relatively well off fifteen year old who always treated training as a joke and therefore knew nothing about anything. Killed him. We both made it to the Top 5 as allies, and decided to split before it came down to just us. I knew I might never have the chance to kill him again though. And I wanted to go home. Guarantee it. So I put a spear through his back before he could get five yards away. It was a crappy throw though, and didn't actually kill him so I had to to go slit his throat. Look him in the eyes and see the shock, longing, betrayal.

That screwed up my psyche quite a bit.

I hid out in the mountains until it was just me and the girl from District Eleven left. Thirteen and tiny, she was underestimated by most, but I had seen her first hand with the sai she found in the hands of another tribute who was already dead, and she could kill. The Gamemakers drove us together on this tiny peak surrounded by several hundred foot drop offs. She never even saw me, she was dangerously close to edge, I threw an decent size boulder at her and it knocked her over.

Cannon. Winner.

After that I was just a victor, and a mentor. My talent was stupid, jewlery-making, and I did that too making use of the pearls that originate in our district. But that's it. Mentor and talent. No secret occupations, annual trips, and precarious press.

I had the nightmares just like every other victor. Played the games. Made decisions that you'd never imagine yourself making before out of desperation.

Eventually you get over all of that. And anything you can't get over you get used to.

I know Finnick doesn't want to see me right now, but I send him a quick note through the Messages portal that will appear on his computers, phone, and iPad.

You're right, I probably don't understand.

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FOOTNOTES

1. Pansexuality is when you're screwing everyone regardless of gender. Very similar to bisexuality, but not the same. Anywho, I've always believed that the Capitol is a primarily pansexual society, so there would be demand for Finnick on the other side too...

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Please review, I really appreciate the feedback!

-cindella204