This fanfic is dedicated to my friend Ruesgroosling, or foxfaced by nightlock, as it is her birthday today! SO happy birthday amy, and hope you have the best day ever… and always stay cripy! :D xxx ly

Sorry its so bad, but I am the worlds worst writer. And if you find it dark and creepy, then it's because I have never written a dark fanfic before, and Amy adores them so I thought I'd bash one out for her birthday! ;) xxx so please read and review! MUCH LOVE!

x

Sometimes there are words you don't know the meaning of.

Sometimes there are sounds you have never heard before.

Sometimes there are trees you just can't climb.

Sometimes there are things you can't explain.

You can't.

I am Clove. And I can. I can. I always can do everything. I can run. So much faster than everyone else.

I can fight. I can nail somebody to the ground in a matter of seconds.

I can be clever… I can answer all the questions that I've ever needed to know the answers to.

I can be strong; strong enough to carry all the heavy things I've had to haul around with me.

I can kill.

I can maim.

I can push away the guilt because I know how to contain myself.

I can understand why.

Why we are in these games.

I can even get myself out of them.

I can do it.

I always can.

I can.

It would be so easy to drive the knife into his back as he sleeps. So quick.. he wouldn't even feel it. He wouldn't even know it was me. Perhaps it's the best way to go, not expecting, not knowing or feeling. He is the helpless one here, sprawled on the ground under his sleeping mat. He can't do anything to stop me. He can't defend himself. It's the first night, it would be so simple to kill him off before he becomes a threat.

So why can't I do it.

I…-I

I can't.

x

I watch her as she stabs the boy in the back. I watch his body crumple to the ground and I see her standing there, proud,, euphoric.

It would be kindest to kill her off right now. My sword could decapitate her pretty head in seconds.

Did I just call her pretty.

I shudder, then snarl. Advancing, I draw a sheath from my pocket. It would be quicker, cleaner than the sword.

Clove whips her head round, dark, chocolate brown balls of hair rippling in the wind as she faces me, grinning.

She's pretty when she grins. I think.

No, I don't.

She'd be better off dead. So much better of dead now, if I do it fast, than a fight between us at the end.

Would she be?

Yes.

I can't do this. Go along… friends, allies, thinking she's pretty. I am brutal. I have killed, I can kill again so much. I feel the muscles in my arm flex and my hands tighten.

And then, for one glimmer of a moment I see my hand entwined with Cloves.

NO.

I can't think like that.

I can't.

I can't.

x

"Kill her Cato." I yell to him as he begins to ascend the tree. He is strong but his hands fumble around hopelessly. That fire girl begins to scramble even further up the tree. I let out a small squeal of frustration as a screech louder.

"KILL HER CATO" She is getting away. Twiches come from my jaw out of nowhere and I feel my hands jittering in anticipation. He has to do this.

'KILL HER! KILL HER CATO."

His hand misses a branch. Next to me marvel and glimmer snort to each other before beginning to shout encouragement. My jaw locks.

"CATO" I holler hoarsely. "KILL HER KILL HER KILL KILL!" No other words can come out of my mouth. She's getting away. Watching her feet falter slightly, I glare at Cato and his sword as I see her scrabbling her way up each branch.

Thud.

I jump back as Cato hits the ground. Marvel pokes Glimmer and they guffaw cruelly. Cato springs up, shaking the dust and attempts it again. Glimmer moves , flicking her hair flirtatiously at Cato. He smiles back at her. Marvel smirks.

Stupid cow. She's such a slut. Clearly she's with that district one brute but sees the need to chat up my Cato too. We'll get her.

He's not your Cato.

She sidles over to me and opens her overly pouty mouth. Cocking her head, she whispers snidely.

"Aren't they pathetic. We could kill them both, you and I. Fire girl and your Cato."

He's not my Cato.

The dust on the ground shakes as Cato clatters to the ground. Glimmer and Marvel moan in unison, and Glimmer snarls "God Cato, I'll do it myself"

She winks at me. I know it means she wants an answer.

"We so could." I mouth at hear, and she whips around.

I lick my lips.

I want to kill.

I could kill fire girl. And her pathetic little lover boy.

And that jumped up district one duo.

I could kill Cato. Licking my lips sadistically, I picture his blood on my hands, his body limp beside me. I see Glimmer there too. My brow crinkles.

I don't want him to die.

Could I do it?

No. Not my Cato.

He's not your Cato.

I said I could.

I can't.

X

Pain.

It's everywhere.

Flight is my first instinct. Grabbing my pack, I throw my body over towards the forest. Is it the forest? I don't know. I don't care. I just want to get away from the pain. The sound of buzzing and screaming. My yells. Stubbornly, my mouth refuses to form saliva and I am dry and burning everywhere. Thouasands of tiny pin pricks, each like a burning candle upond my raw skin.

Oh god.

Make it stop.

Hurt.

Screams.

Ow.

Make it STOP.

I can't see. I can't SEE. WHY CAN'T I SEE.

WHY CANT I FUNCTION.

Everywhere burns.

Everywhere screams.

I can't do it.

MAKE IT STOP.

The Blonde one is screeching. My name? Is it my name. I can't hear. Is she my friend? I don't know. I don't care. I want out.

It's not my name anymore.

It's the other one. Marvel.

Oh it stopped.

I don't care. It hurts too much to care.

Why are they still stinging me.

WHY?

IT HURTS. WHY DO I HAVE TO HURT?

The boy is on the floor. Is he crying? I don't care. Why is he blue with bugs on him. It hurts. He is blue. There are bugs on me too. I can't do this anymore.

Pain. Screams. I can't do this anymore. Clove, I can't do it.

Clove.

Oh my god clove.

I left her.

He isn't blue anymore.

The bugs are gone.

So is Clove.

"Clove?" I shout, trying not to sound desperate. I can't contain it. I scream, my voice becoming weak, not intimaidating. I hate it. I can't stop it.

"OH GOD…. CLOVE" My face is pouring with something now.

Must be sweat. Why would my eyes sweat? I try to think as my body crashes through the trees, the sword infront of me mowing down every plant or tree in my presence.

I can't find clove.

I can't.

Why can't I find my Clove?

My body is about to break down when I feel something. I force my body round.

It's fire boy. No, Fire Girl. With the boy. Is he fire boy? Wait.

WAIT WAIT WAIT

My eyes are going fuzzy, and suddenly everything is blue again.

No, I have to keep my self here. I have to. I can't let go, not without her, not without clove.

Blinking rapidly, I realize that I can see again. The boy in the clearing. The girl pushing through the trees, panting heavily. I can't get to her. But I can kill him. I need to. What else is left for me. Without clove?

I advance, about to perform another barbaric, clod blooded murder.

Oh God I can't do this.

Yes I can.

Clove?

She isn't here. But he is.

Crushing him is so easy. I think as I find myself upon him, pounding him. I get my knife out and begin to slice of his leg. All I see is red, the desperate need for revenge.

You took her away from me.

His eyes plead with me. They leak desperation, and the moaning sounds are so… so…. Worthless.

I almost forgot how quickly they break I think , the taste of pain clear and fresh in my mouth.

That's when I hear her.

"Cato!" she gasps from somewhere.

I need to find her.

"Cato." She is in front of me now. Ragged and scared, her face seems so mauled, stung and ugly. Yet she still looks pretty to me. Why?

"Cato you have to kill me" she says. I see her chest moving up and down too quickly to be healthy. Her body jerks in my arms, and she keeps going blurry.

"I can't hold on clove.." I reply, as if I didn't hear. My face is trembling now. My eyes are sweating so much.

"Listen to me Cato." She whispers, new blood bubbling in her mouth. "I got stung. So bad. It…it- hurts me Cato. I'm dying. I'm dying and it godamn hurts me Cato. If I make it I don't want it to come down to you and me. So do it. You know you nearly did it earlier. Make it quick. Just kill me. I don't want the pain anymore."

Or at least that's what I thought she said in-between the crying and vomit.

"Kill me, Cato"

No.

I nearly killed her before, didn't I?

No.

I can do this. Quickly, she wants it, right.

"I won't"

"Don't worry Cato" she says, her voice light and soft, so soft you almost can't hear it.

"I want out."

She says, shutting her eyes.

Everything about this is wrong.

I shouldn't be doing this.

I shouldn't do this if I love her.

I shouldn't, surely wouldn't.

What am I doing with my sword?

"I'm so so sorry Clove."

x

"You didn't kill me." I say. Surprised, but not pleased. Weird, isn't it, how angry I am with him for saving my life. How I want to embarrass him for it now.

He stalks ahead of me towards the smell of smoke. Marvel is following somewhere behind us, but I don't care. Frankly, it's a matter of time before he fizzles out on his own without his blonde bimbo to take care of him.

"You didn't kill me… you couldn't do it." I tease in a sinister, sing song voice. I jog up to him, then turn around so I am moving back wards, facing him but advancing at the same time.

His expression is like stone.

"Shut up Clover." He growls maliciously. Waggling my eyebrows, I shake my head.

Why would I stop. Taunting him is fun.

"Your weak, Cato." I grin. "You put the sword down. You said you loved me. Maybe we should call you lover boy instead of twelve." I say, my eyes shining with glee. His jaw locks.

"It was the venom. I was delusional. Who could possibly love somebody is horrendous, patronizing and plain as you, Clover." He retaliates.

The knife penetrates his bag before he can finish the sentence.

"Oooh, you hurt my backpack…. Get real clove. Lets find whichever idiot started this fire, kill it and then get back to camp."

Who's being patronizing now?

I chuck another knife at his rucksack.

Whipping himself round, Cato pins me against the nearest tree and grabs the knife from my hand. His arm muscles shift as he crushes me further. I wince. Something changes in his eyes and he releases me, turning his back to the spot I lay, crumpled and in a heap.

"You know what… get back to camp. The men will finish the job whilst you cook us some lunch… m'kay." He sneers sarcastically, not bothering to look at me.

Oh my Cato, I am glad you didn't finish me off.

He's not your Cato.

Suddenly, a blast of sound battles its way into my eardrums and causes me to stand straight up, whirling round in attempt to determine the source. That is when I see the smoke rising from the fire around the cornucopia; our camp is on fire.

Rage blazes in his eyes, and I feel fluttering motions in my chest. I ignore them, and answer spitefully.

"Sorry Cato dear, about that lunch you wanted." My mouth curves upwards into a tilted smile, and it is with great pleasure that I tell him "I can't" .

x

Crouched in the undergrowth, I hear clove swear next to me as the nettles sting her bare arms.

"How much longer do I have to sit like this?" she hisses indignantly, her voice low and snake like. The sky conceals most of her face, and only the whites of her eyes and teeth can be seen amidst the moonlight. She has a sort of devilish glow about her tonight. I grin. We share that glow.

Tonight's the night we kill her.

Kill the one that nearly killed Clove. The one who was on fire. Good thing she's used to flames, because there will be a lot of them where she's heading after we take her.

Remembering her question, I squint towards the cornucopia. I can practically feel her movement, her presence.

"Not long now."

She chuckles darkly, a crisp, delicious sound which fills my head and makes me a sort of giddy. The way I always do before a hunt.

"Thanks for letting me have her, by the way. I'll remember to let you have whatever's left of lover boy." She says, clicking her teeth in anticipation. "God, I can hardly wait."

"I know I can't"

x

I am too young to die.

I thought I was dying before, with the tracker jacker venom.

But that wasn't dying.

This. Is. Dying.

Everything is rushing past my eyes, like I'm watching a race but I can't see who is winning. Each event in my life I can see, but it's too fast.

I see trees. Rocks. Jumping on top of boulders with my Dad. I see my first day at school. I see my mum braiding my hair. I see myself swimming with my brothers. I see Cato. So much Cato. I see him laughing. So rare to see him laugh, but now it's all I can see. I see us running. I see us at the training centre back home, throwing knives and spears and lifting weights.

I see my house. I see my Cato and I see my house.

"Cato!" My scream is weak, dry and hollow. "Cato!" When I attempt to gulp at the air, I realize that my breathing is heightened… and in an instant everything is happening at once, I don't even know where I am anymore, and everything is so fast; light is desperate to escape from my being. Everything becomes black, so deep and dark that I can't even feel the pain. I'm so close now. I think with a smile. So nearly there.

"Clove!"

His voice sounds hurt. My Cato can't be hurt. HE has to be strong whilst I die.

"Oh my god clove." He says, his tone manic. He lifts me in his arms. "It's okay clove, your not dying."

"The sky is pretty Cato." I say to him with a smile. Why did I say that? I want to scream. Every drip of life left in my is being drained from my mind and I can't seem to tell him. I rock my body back and forth but nothing moves. I want to scream. I want to scream and scream and scream.

I don't.

"My mind is full of dark now Cato." I tell him. Oh why, why can't I scream. "I'm going away." I tell him, in the way a child tells his parent that they are running away.

For the first time ever, I truly see Cato open up. I am completely protected; every inch of my body is safe in his arms. His face is shaking; his expression completely broken. He starts to shout.

"CLOVE" he yells at my vacant expression. "CLOVE I'M HERE! STAY WITH ME CLOVE. STAY WITH ME CLOVE, PLEASE." On the latter part of the sentence, I hear his voice crack as he grips me even tighter, his body vibrating with emotions. "please…" he whispers. "please lord please save her. Please clove please stay with me" he says.

He is so sad. Seeing him like this, so broken makes me want to die inside.

But I am dying. I think. I am dying and I need him to help me. I need it to end and I need to tell him how much I care before I does.

"Sssh…" I lift my hand up to stroke his face, wiping the blood away. "It's okay. I'm going somewhere better. A nice place. With cool lakes and pretty daisy flowers. It's pretty where I'm going." I grin, blood foaming through my teeth.

Inside I want to freak. I want to thrash and yell and holler at the top of my voice. I want to show how much it hurts. Nothing hurts more than the pain in my head. And the worst bit is that I can't even remember why I have the pain. WHY AM I NOT TELLING HIM. TELLING HIM THAT HE'S THE ONLY GODDAMIT PERSON WHO HAS EVER LOVED ME. NOBODY LOVES AN ORPHAN. NOBODY LOVES THE GIRL WITH THE IMAGINARY MUMMY AND DADDY. But he did.

He loved me.

He loved me.

He told me.

And I loved him too.

I love him.

I want him to never let me go.

"`It's pretty in my head." I say.

How can it be pretty? It burns like a thousand hells. Knowing that you are dying. Dying before your 16th birthday. Dying having never told somebody you loved them. Knowing you are a murderer. Knowing you have taken life away from others.

I have never been kissed.

I'm not ready for this. Pain is practically a vortex, sucking me in, numbing my body, desensitizing my vital organs.

I'm so, so scared.

"Cato I'm frightened." I manage to choke out, trying to keep the light in my eyes. Just for him. Because I need him. I need more words. I have to make him see how much I need him. And that I am so nearly dead.

He knows. One look into his pool of sea blue perfection an I can tell that he knows.

I'm not going to make it.

"It's okay Clove." He says, tears streaming down his face. It's so cliqued; I always hated the way people said streamed. But they do stream. They are pouring onto my chest right now. "Clove, you're gunna go to the safe place. And I'll be there real soon."

He strokes my hair, delicately placing each mattered strand behind my ear.

"You're not coming. You have to live Cato. Live for me." Barely audible now, I allow my throbbing head to roll back wards, but his string hands catch it. Every inch of Cato, my strong, tough Cato, is trembling as he begs me one last time.

"Stay with me Clove."

I think. I try. I drag at every happy memory I have, but every single one is shadowed by the bad times. The hurt. The blood and the darkness. Nothing that used to be mine belongs any more. I can't even see Cato's face.

"Goddamit Clove, you're so beautiful. Why couldn't I tell you your beautiful?"

You are beautiful, Cato.

A soft tickling breeze hits me, which I suddenly realize is his sweet breath on my face. I feel his lips smooth upon mine, warm and passionate.

Only his meet a cold, hard surface.

He stands up in exasperation. He trashes, cries, screams. Limbs everywhere, I see him crying like a little girl.

Only I can't see through my dead brown eyes.

He asked me to stay with him

I want to.

I need to.

We could go home. Be together. I could feel loved. I could have a family. I could make sure my babies never had to be on their own. I could have my Cato all to myself.

But I can't.

x

"Do it" I blubber through the blood that spills into my mouth from the gash on my cheek which insists upon weeping blood into my mouth. "Shoot and then we go down, and you win.

I see her face. It doesn't have fire on it anymore; she doesn't need it. Twelve has enough fire in her eyes to last for everyone.

And why should I keep going. Why should I give my district what they want?

"just one more kill." I croak, my eyes wide, deranged, lover boy struggling and panting underneath my grip. "one more kill. I can do this. Bring pride to my district."

One more kill.

Blood and congealed mud fill my mouth and I realize I don't want to be this monster anymore.

"I'm dead." I whisper into the silence. Silence, save for the barking pack of mutts. But am I really any more that a dirty, bleeding mutt?

What am I without Clove?

A mutt.

A monster.

One more kill.

I can do this.

I have to. Maybe I don't want to but I have to because I promised my Clove. I shut my eyes for just one second. I feel scared. I have to see her face on last time. She can make me do it. She wants me to live. One of us have to. They need a victor. And why should lover girl get her baker boy back? Why should she get her true love when I lost the only thing I had to a rock.

Blood. Cloves hot blood. It's all I can think about. It burns me, scorching my hands, all over one hand, one spot, a cross shaped spot of her blood.

Then everything is black.

x

"I'm sorry I couldn't keep my promise.

I tried to live for you, Clove.

But you couldn't hold on for me, could you.

So why should I do my one more kill. Why should I, if I don't get you…."

I wanted to do it.

But without us, what did I have. At least we have each other now. At least we are in a better place now.

I am sorry Clove.

Sorry I let you die.

Sorry I let my self die.

Because somebody decided you and I were born to die.

I want to live. With you. And we will live together. In another life. But not until I apologies for failing in our first one.

But how could I let myself live knowing that I wouldn't see you again.

I couldn't.

And I still can't.