The Next Generation

Disclaimer: I do not own The Hunger Games the characters setting and general plot belong to Suzanne Collins

Chapter One: Children of the victors

They play on TV still, those scary games. Mommy watches and cries, Daddy clenches his fists and closes his eyes. I understand that those where horrible days. I understand that mommy and daddy fought to free us and daddy still fights against himself. I am named for a friend of mommy, a little girl she once knew in those days, who was killed when she was only twelve. My brother is named for a friend who saved daddy's life more than once and died in the war saving mommy and daddy.

My name is Rue, my brother is Finnick. We live in what used to be district 12 in the once terrible country of Panem. Mommy and daddy call us their baby birds, their little mockingjays. In the war for freedom mommy was the Mockingjay. She and daddy rebelled in their first games and both won despite the odds.

"Happy hunger Games!" I whisper to myself now in the old Capitol accent, "and may the odds be ever in your favor!"

"What does that mean" Finnick asks as he always does when I say it or he hears it on TV, "what does what mean?"

"Mommy! Daddy! When did you get here?" now that I'm 6 I'm aloud to go to the meadow by myself but they follow me a lot

"Two seconds ago. Your brother wanted to play. So we brought him down." Daddy always answered first when they came here.

"I want to know what it means! Will anyone tell me!" This three year old has a one track mind.

"Little Mockingjay, what did you say?"

"Just that old thing at the beginning of each of the games in the accent…. Sorry mommy I know you hate that…"

Certain words are bad to say to them, and the list is long: the games, hunger games, President Snow, tributes, death. Even Primrose, the name of my late aunt, isn't ok. When any of these words are said either mommy or daddy, sometimes both, left us. Well, they stood there like they were but their smiles would disappear and their eyes would be somewhere else and it took a lot of time to get them back.