I'm home, exhausted and slightly irritated. The good news is that updates should be back to normal now. Next update should be Tuesday! Sorry for this taking so long and thank you for baring with me through this. Now let me give you over to the more than capable Damian!


Damian Blackwater of District 8

Private Training Session 2 by xXTeamFinnickXx


"If I'm a bad person, you don't like me,

Well, I guess I'll make my own way,

It's a circle, a mean cycle,

I can't excite you anymore."

- Paramore


Never in my seventeen years of living have I met someone who cared less about the crap going on around them, no matter how extreme, than I do. Today, I finally did.

"Come on," I mutter under my breath as the District 4 tributes finish up their private sessions and exit. I tap my foot impatiently, waiting for Anya to get her lazy ass down here. She's managed to be the only tribute to not show up on time.

I feel like I should be pissed at her. After all, we're district partners. If she's not here, that'll make me look bad, which will ultimately result in my death. The gamemakers don't appreciate people who don't play by their rules, and while I'm all for running against the law, I cherish my life. I'm willing to obey them, only for a few weeks, if it means escaping this thing alive.

But for some strange reason, I can't stay angry at Anya.

Alright, go ahead, I give you permission to make fun of me. You're probably wondering what happened to the hard-ass thief who hated everyone and everything and wished they all fell in a hole and burned alive. Well, he may have changed just a little bit.

You see, Anya is different than the rest of humanity. Sure, half the time she's drunk off her ass and doesn't know what's going on, but when she's not, she can be kind of awesome. It started right after the reaping. We were herded onto the train that would take us to the Capitol. We had dinner immediately and I couldn't help but notice her staring at me several times. When we went to our rooms for the night, there was a knock on my door that, obviously, belonged to her. I let her in where she opened up her hands to reveal the only thing I care about in the world.

SQUEAK.

"Quiet!" I whisper, praying no one heard. I unzip the pocket to my training jacket and look into the wide, brown eyes of my very own partner in crime, Bandit the ferret. "Listen bud, you've gotta keep quiet, or they're gonna take you away again, got it?" My highly intelligent sidekick nods his little rodent head and nestles back into my side.

"Atlanta Zimmerman," calls a man from the doors that lead to the private training area. I recognize the name as the District 5 female. She gets up from her table and strolls confidently to the doors. As she passes me, she flashes a devious grin, striding with pride into the training room. Someone sure is cocky,I think to myself.

The girl disappears behind the doors and the room is filled with dead silence again. I glance around nervously. Great, still no sign of Anya. Where the hell is she?

I do my best to listen in on Atlanta's session, just as I've been doing so far. With the Career districts, it wasn't hard to figure out who was doing well and who wasn't. They were…very loud to say the least. Or maybe the walls are just thin. Either way, I can guarantee the pack is a strong one this year. But Atlanta is extremely quiet. I can't really tell how she's doing.

After a short amount of time, the girl emerges from the room, still looking as confident as ever. Not even waiting for her district partner, she walks swiftly over to the elevator and heads up to her room.

I watch as Bastian Estatika walks slowly into the room, directly after his partner. His session is just as silent as Atlanta's, not really giving me any insight as to what went down.

Anxiously, I being to drum my fingers against the table I sit at, glancing over at the other tributes. Everyone seems to be either cocky or nervous, which I guess makes sense. I run my right hand through my trimmed black hair, attempting to keep my heart rate down. If I let nerves get the best of me today, who knows what'll go wrong.

Bastian's session is rather slow and he comes walking out the doors, heading for the elevator immediately.

"Londyn Aureole."

I watch as the girl from District 6 shyly gets up and walks to the large doors, her lip quivering. As she passes, I can't help but stare at her inquisitively. There's something more to that girl. I don't think she's just some weakling.

Then again, I also think too much. I watch as the doors close, and can't help but notice a small butterfly hover over Londyn's head. What the hell is thatabout?

Groaning, I turn back around and lean forward onto the table I sit at. I just now realize that I'm heading in there soon. In a matter of minutes, it'll be my time to show the gamemakers what I've got. And that makes me wonder…what do I even have to show?

My superior intellect, obviously, but how does one display that? I can't take a scan of my brain and show them my IQ. The most I can do is run around a bit and show off my speed, not that that'll do me any good. I have to think of a way to wow them, but it just isn't coming to me.

I think for a few minutes about what to do, having to reach down to stop Bandit from falling out of my pocket once, but I have absolutely nothing. I guess I'll be doing what I do best; winging it.

Once Londyn's session is over, she leaves the training center looking modestly pleased with herself. I know I'll never find out what it was she did in there, but I don't think it was what the gamemakers were expecting. Seconds later, her district partner, Edrick Quillheart, makes his way to the training room. He appears to have a large array of emotions flowing through him, and honestly, I can't tell what's going on in his puny little brain. I assume he's nervous, but then again, he could be the most confident guy on the planet right now.

The doors slam behind him and I decide to really think about what I have to do in front of the gamemakers. I'm in deep thought when I'm interrupted by a loud, obnoxious shout.

"AIRSTRIKE! AIRSTRIKE!" I hear, immediately whipping my head around to face the source of the noise. The yell is coming from none other than Jonas Emerson of District 7. All of the other tributes are staring at him like I am, wondering what the hell is going on. He slams his palm down on his table, getting up and karate chopping the air like a moron.

Class A,I think. Definitely Class A.

"Ah, mother of God!" he continues, pounding at something on the wall. "Kill it with fire!"

I rub my fingers across my forehead, stress getting the better of me. "What the hell are you swatting at?" I can't help but ask. The boy is about to respond when a small fly skids across my table, coming to a stop right in front of me. Staring at Jonas, I shoot him my biggest you-have-got-to-be-joking look and in one swift movement, the fly's wings are pinned between my fingers. I flick it aside and watch as it bounces across the ground. Obviously embarrassed, Jonas takes his seat again.

If these are the kind of people I'm dealing with, I should be home in no time.

As if on cue, Edrick's session finishes up. He has a good amount of sweat dripping down his face, and I figure he must have put on a good show in there.

"Alexis Spurling," I hear, and watch the girl from 7 stand up, shaking her head in shame, probably angry at her district partner for looking like an idiot. She closes the doors gently behind her when she enters the training room. I can't help but notice a small yelp coming from her on the other side. Poor kid. Probably scared of weapons. Or the gamemakers. Or both. Heh, sucks to be her.

After a few minutes of waiting for Alexis to finish up, I hear the dingof the elevator, turning my head to see who's coming down. Honestly, I'm shocked to see the face of Anya Powers finally arriving.

What I'm not shocked to see is the stream of alcohol dripping from her lip.

"Are you serious?" I mutter, just loud enough for her to hear. Anya trips out of the elevator, fumbling to get a grip on the wall beside her so she can maintain her balance. I glance around, figuring that if she reunited me with Bandit, the least I can do is help her to a table. I quickly jog over and grab her arm, letting her use me to keep herself on her feet until I can sit her down on the bench beside me.

"Anya," I whisper. "What the hell is wrong with you?"

"There are many, manythings wrong with me, Danny."

"Damian," I correct, rolling my eyes. I watch as Alexis exits the training room, a look of horror on her face. I stop myself from laughing too hard as she passes. Jonas, the fly swatting spaz, silently gets up and takes her place.

"Whatever, Danny," I hear in my ear. Rolling my eyes, I focus my attention back on Anya. I shake my head in disgust as she batters her eyelids at me. "What? There's nothing wrong with a few drinks."

"You're right," I correct. "But there is something wrong with a lot of drinks, especially right before a training session that could potentially determine the length of your life."

She shrugs, laughing loudly in my face. I shrink away, trying not to inhale her beer-infused breath.

I spend the next few minutes trying to keep Anya from toppling over while ignoring her drunken slurs. She's obviously more wasted than she's ever been before. I mean, the Capitol has probably introduced her to a whole new kind of alcohol. A much more expensive, intoxicating kind.

I can't say I'm upset when it's her time to perform for the gamemakers.

"Try not to kill yourself, okay?" I ask. She only winks and skips into the room. Seriously? Was the skipping necessary?

I catch a few of the remaining tributes snickering at my misfortune. Standing up, I shoot them a glare full of daggers and demand, "Is something funny?" Needless to say, that shuts them up.

I resume my anxious finger-tapping and hair-ruffling as I wait for Anya to return. I mean, I guess I'm a little concerned for what the gamemakers think of her right now, but really, I'm more worried about what they'll think of me. After my district partner humiliates herself in front of them, will they be able to take me seriously?

"Damian Blackwater."

I guess I'm about to find out.

I pass Anya on my way to the doors and whisper, "How'd you do?"

"Danny," she says coolly. "I did fantastic, obviously. Don't I always?" She giggles and stumbles to the elevator.

I shake my head in disapproval, something I've been doing a lot lately, and walk steadily into the training room. I have to squint my eyes a bit as the bright light takes over me, but I manage to make myself look fearless enough. I proudly take my place in the center of the room and look over the gamemakers. It seems they couldn't be bothered to take a break from their lunch to watch us train. So thoughtful of them.

"Hi there," I say with a fake smile. "I'm just gonna, you know, do some stuff for you guys now. I hope you're ready. I'm gonna blow you away." No response. Not even a look. "I'm just gonna go now." Nope. Still not listening. "Alright, so I'm just gonna head on over here and dance on my head for a while. Maybe my friend Larry the orange dinosaur will join me. We can have big old part filled with chipmunks and confetti. I hope you all brought your party hats." Not a single blink. Figures.

"Morons," I mutter, as if someone was actually listening. I head over to a large rack of weapons with a forest of dummies laid out for me to attack. I grab the hilt of an axe and try to lift it, but it turns out to be a lot heavier than I expected. I'm afraid I look pathetic when I remember no one's actually watching.

Hey…No one's watching.

Whistling as I go, I grab a handful of small spears and walk straight over to a target. I jab three spears right in the bull's eye, positioning them so it looks like I threw them. With the rest, I jog over to the complete opposite end of the circular room, setting them down beside me.

"WHOA." I shout, getting the attention of a few gamemakers. "Would you look at that? Three bull's eyes in a row, and from all the way over here. Bet you haven't seen that before, huh?"

The few gamemakers that looked over appear mildly amused, but they go back to eating almost instantly.

Frowning, I lean against the wall and look up at the throng of Capitol freaks. "Alright, listen you costumed bozos," I say demandingly. Thankfully, most of them look over, appalled at the tone of my voice. "If you're not going to pay me any mind, could you just give me a solid eight and be done with it?"

Several gamemakers laugh before one speaks up. "I'm afraid that's not how it works."

"Then how does it work? Do you sit there, eat your lunch, give the Careers tens and elevens and randomize the rest of our scores?"

"Not quite," the man says, clearly agitated. "Why don't you show us what you can do and then we'll talk."

I smirk. "Well, I'm done. I already severed the heads of a few dummies, ran around the room in six seconds, and threw those spears from all the way over here at that target. You just missed it all."

"I don't buy that."

"Well, if you weren't paying attention, I guess you'll never know." I smile widely at them as a few mutter amongst themselves.

"Mr. Blackwater," says one. "I think you can go now."

"It's about time." I respond, eagerly walking to the doors. "It was a pleasure meeting you, and I hope you enjoy your lunch. You've been a great audience. Drive safely!"

I slam the doors behind me as I walk angrily to the elevator. I feel bad for whoever has to go after me. The gamemakers are probably downright pissed now.

Impatiently, I press the button to the elevator several times before it opens, jumping back in surprise at the face waiting to greet me. "Anya," I say in silenced rage. "What are you doing?"

"Nothing much. I just discovered that when you press these buttons, you go up and down! Isn't that neat?"

"Dear God," I mumble. "Alright, it's official, you're going to bed."

"But I don't wanna!"

"Well, that's too bad, because I'm in no mood to put up with your…" I trail off, realizing what I sound like. "What am I, your mom? Shut up and press that button over there." I step inside and Anya reluctantly hits the eight button, sending us shooting upwards.

"Has anyone ever told you your eyes are really pretty?"

I turn my head to catch Anya all up in my grill and jump again. "Knock it off!" I shout. "And no, they haven't, because no one's been conscious long enough to-"

I'm cut off by the pressure of something warm digging into my lips. I'm pressed against the wall as my eyes close themselves, totally against my will. My heart rate slows down to a sluggish, relaxed pace. I feel someone's hand brush against my arm as the elevator doors slide open on our floor.

Anya steps back and I realize what just happened. "Anya Powers!" I yell. "What was that?"

"A kiss!" she says back giddily. "You looked down, so I thought you could use one!"

I blink my eyes in astonishment. I'm not even aware that Bandit bounds out of my pocket and scurries out the doors and onto our floor. Did Anya Powers…Anya Powers just gave me my first kiss.

She skips out the door after Bandit, leaving me in a state of disbelief. I stagger backwards, using the wall to keep myself upright.

Finally, the full realization hits me. Anya may be drunk all the time, but when she's not, she's…a different person. She's intelligent, witty, determined, and beautiful.

Anya's not just any ordinary human. She's in Class C.