Hello to you all, I am very happy to be starting this. Basically the Quell twist this year is that every district will have its own games before the two victors from each district compete in a final games to find the one victor. This story is dedicated to the District One tributes and there will be another story posted for the District Two once this is finished etc. Now I haven't received everyone so if you are interested PM me and I will tell you available spots. The idea of this is that the Games are going to be starting earlier in the year, each month starting in January there is a Games, with the final Games happening after District Twelve's. This is a very big project, but I look forward to doing this.
Now I haven't done this format in a long time, but this story will be written in third person and alternating POV's. I haven't written in the third person in a while so I apologise in advance if it isn't the most amazing writing xD
I chose to do this format partly because I have done it before and I enjoyed it, but also because I was inspired by a great story called Showdown: No holding back by Anla'shok. Seriously go check it out! ;)
There should be a blog going up sometime once I receive all the tribute so I'll let you know when that appears.
I don't mean this to sound harsh, but to those that have a tribute, for me to know if you are reading please review. Otherwise it's only fair to those who do review that their tribute survives longer.
I hope you all enjoy the first reaping, if you could leave a review. I'd definitely appreciate it! Anyway these tributes belong to Blue Eyes Arch Angel and ImmyRose. ENJOY! ;)
Lock Arakora Skull, 17 years old
He was perched up against the left wall of his house, contemplating today. This year, the Games were very different and Lock was intrigued; should he volunteer? Did he dare face twenty three other Careers?
A long whip of wind lashed at his face, causing tears to erupt and trickle down his pale cheeks. His blonde hair was tangled by the breeze as it tore at his traditionally brushed hair.
He knew himself as an outsider; his intelligence was beyond anything the other Careers at the centre were used to. Lock was different; his thoughts were often plagued with loneliness at being something he didn't know whether or not he should be.
Books were his one way of getting out of what he believed others pushed upon him; he could handle himself all too well since you didn't have to be an idiot to have muscle. The past dozen or so years of his life had been filled with literature; something that had been forced upon him by the two people he called his parents. They were loving people, but were struck down with an addiction for the printed word.
Their path in life was stuck in his brain, he relished enjoying what was in black text but he longed to slash at the restraints on his life and be something different. With Angelo, he could be himself.
The cool wind subsided and a boy with a warm smile, rosy cheeks and curled brown hair ran to his side and linked his arm with Lock's.
"Odd, huh? These Games, they're going to be big."
The year had only just begun and instead of waiting for the flowers to blossom indicating spring, the Games had to start this month. District One was up first. Angelo was a kind soul but shy in the face of strangers, Lock couldn't help but love this feature of him. He felt like a protector, a loving protector of someone he cared deeply for.
Angelo was his, he didn't care whether or not people accepted him for liking Angelo, this precious boy with the brownest of all hair was someone he could love and would love forever.
"The Games this year are going to be difficult, simple fact. This month, twenty four from One will battle it out and there will be blood spilt - plenty of it."
Angelo curled a lock of his hair round his finger, his pink lips forming a cute smile. His finger poked Lock on his cheek; the older boy was amused but hid this under a mask of indifference.
The older boy felt hot in his cheeks, the red earned him a laugh from Angelo. He would punch him, but the younger boy was delicate. He pained to see him hurt.
The sun peeked over the clouds that had overtaken the sky, birds singing songs to one another flew through the air and into the trees on the edge of this neighbourhood. Lock lived in a fairly ordinary house in comparison to most people from District One. His parents saved enough to carry on decent lives without the judgment of others. Opinion mattered to Lock's mother and father; they would not be undermined by those bathing in their riches.
Lock sighed; today was going to be difficult. He didn't know what to do.
Meaghan Paar, 16 years old
Her smile was evident as she laughed alongside the two girls giggling to the one at the front. His hair was a mop of golden curls, his face lightened with the smile that curled higher and higher into his cheeks.
"Come on girls don't die on me, I need your laughter."
The boy was busy telling jokes to the three girls who were willing to listen when he asked. The ginger one with freckles dotting her cheeks and nose seemed to be enticed by the words that fell from his lips. Her eyes were stuck on his, she seemed entranced. The other girl had a messy crop of hair that was dyed completely black, a tattoo of some kind of mythical being traced alongside the back of her neck. Her eyes lacked what the ginger girl was showing; she seemed bored but nevertheless willing to smile for him.
Meaghan with her light red hair and a single stud in her nose to make herself bold among the ditzy, bubbly idiots that strutted about with their air of misguided arrogance, was busy pretending to enjoy this abysmal show. This girl was used to putting on a fake smile and allowing those around her to believe they were special and wanted.
Meaghan's lips curled into a smirk laced with a certain evil to them. A sword the length of her arm popped into her mind, as sharp as the blades of old. Her giggle wasn't for the joke that erupted from this guy's mouth, it was for the blood that poured from his chest as she imagined cutting into him.
She couldn't hide the disappointment in her expression when she realized it wasn't happening in reality.
"Meaghan, I am glad you are enjoying this!"
Her eyes shifted from a state of psychosis to that of fake glee.
"Yes, very much Anton. Again again!"
Part of her act was overexcitement. Everything to what she presented to people had to be finalized with a good old jump in the air, maybe a high five here and there. To compliment the giggles she hopped from her seat on the grass and giggled as she fell back down. In her head she thought up ways of getting revenge on Anton for forcing her into this torture.
How hard would it be to explain a very unfortunate impaling? Decapitation? Probably a bit tricky.
No matter, Meaghan was prepared to come up with some scheme to make this boy feel sorry. All those who had encountered her wrath stayed well away, never interrupting her ever again or telling those she was lying to about what she really was like. She enjoyed this system of fear, no one crossed her twice.
Anton and the other two girls were disappointing. Neither ever bothered to train for a victory most kids died to acquire. This year maybe it was a bit off putting, after all chances are in an Arena full of careers of roughly equal level you were going to die.
Meaghan smiled at the thought of competition; her competitive side was something many witnessed if they watched her train without that fake smile on her face.
If the odds were worse this year Meaghan couldn't resist. Her smile was as evident as the hypnosis in ginger's eyes. Anton's jokes started to seem a bit funnier.
Lock Arakora Skull, 17 years old
Hezekiah should be here, the group had never been the same since she left them to whatever happened after death. Lock liked to think that there was a better place for those who perished and fell from existence. Everyone likes to think of something in the future after death, something that they can cling to so when their death finally does arrive it doesn't scare them.
Last year was odd. No female volunteer took the place of Hezekiah. She was always different in the eyes of the career girls, she favoured books which Lock admired, she was a strong minded young girl but loved to care for the youth among the District. She didn't deserve to die.
Lock's eyes fell upon his friends on the opposite side of the room. Their faces were bright but something was missing from their eyes, a spark that used to be there when Hezekiah was around to guide them.
The four of them were hunched around an open fire, the room was poorly lit so the light emitting from the dancing flames helped to at least make things slightly more visible.
Angelo was out of his shell around his friends, Lock had his fingers intertwined with his. The two were in love and the other two didn't care whatsoever. Love who you want to love, you shouldn't be dictated when it comes to the heart.
"Today as we all know is the reaping. We don't gather together to read books on the reaping day. I have called us all together to spare a moment of thought for the late Hezekiah." Braxton Prince said. He was a lovely guy who deeply craved for Hezekiah's presence. The four of them carried on the book club she started in memory of her, Braxton the new leader seemed content with his position of leader but he looked uncomfortable sitting in her chair.
"Last year Hezekiah, a good friend of ours was reaped into the Hunger Games and the girls who were planning on volunteering didn't. Why? Because they wanted Hezekiah, the girl who was different to them to be in the Games. Disgusting behavior we all know, but one thing they didn't count for was Hezekiah putting up a good fight. The final three was where our friend fell and we honour her memory today." Braxton paused to look around at his friend's faces. Lock caught his eye and nodded his head. Lock knew that Braxton was intimidated slightly by his appearance, he was so much bigger than the other boy, to top it all off he wore odd clothes. Angelo loved him for it, but around the District and even in this room he received looks of curiosity. His black clothes were sacred to him and he wouldn't change. Angelo admired this courage to be himself; he'd never disappoint the boy by changing to fit the stereotypical District.
Lock straightened his back and cleared his throat. Angelo, Braxton and Varsity all looked to him with clear expressions. He was required to say a few words, it hadn't been ordered upon him but it felt right.
"Hezekiah was one of us. A girl who didn't care for how different she seemed in the face of the others who roam the District hunting glory. Her care for the young was admirable, and the way she remained focused despite the insults hurled her way showed a true hero. If we ever become afraid of embracing our true selves think of Hezekiah. Never be who you don't want to be, stay true with who you are."
The others smiled up at him as he concluded. Lock couldn't contain the small grin that took a hold of his lips. He'd done the right thing, but the others didn't know that he wanted the Games. He was a hypocrite, it just felt right to volunteer despite the worry in the pit of his stomach. Would any of them understand?
Meaghan Paar, 16 years old
If there was just one thing Meaghan could say that's good about being home was that she was away from Anton and his beyond horrendous jokes. He's a sweet little thing in a way, all about the laughs and the looks. She knew people had to look good to get what they wanted. What kind of world would people live in if the ugly ruled and dominated over the pretty ones? A very silly one. It's hard for Meaghan not to giggle at such a nonsense idea.
That boy seriously needed to get his priorities sorted, much like a lot of the other people around the District. Sure it was quite hypocritical of Meaghan to believe that everyone should be devoted to training with absolutely no gimmicks because just look at what she did every day. Meaghan's livelihood was based on deceiving good old folk for a giggle here and there from watching them shrink away in the darkness once she was through with them. Nevertheless she believed that training should be strictly followed despite any personality differences people might have. Meaghan was devoted to training, even more devoted after that boy wrecked everything.
'Oh that's Axel's sister.'
'Think she's better than Axel?'
'No Axel's the best.'
Never a mention of a Meaghan anywhere, it's all about her oh so popular and highly annoying brother. That stupid brother of hers drew all the attention away; even her damn mother craved his presence more than her own. So this year Meaghan trained twice as hard, even harder than she had done before. She was going into the Games this year and proving to everyone that Meaghan Paar was better than Axel Paar. Once she's through with everyone, they'll wish they never compared her to that simpleton.
"For crying out loud Meaghan, get your ass down here now!"
If she could kill that boy she would, unfortunately jail didn't appeal to her. Instead she resorted to containing her murderous obsessions within the confines of her imagination. Her hand found the door handle and with a single twist the wood flew open and she hurried to the banister. Her red hair fell over her face as she looked down into the eyes of Axel. His grin was undeniable, but all the happiness was gone from his eyes.
"What the hell do you want?" Meaghan shouted, barely containing her fury at being interrupted from her thoughts. They were nothing special, she always thought about training and the hunger games, and revenge one day on Axel. Today would be her chance though, he was planning on going into the Games and Meaghan just hoped that another boy would beat him. If she became a tribute and he didn't on his last eligible year he'd go mental. Just to see that breakdown would bring a smile to her face.
"Mother wants to know where you were earlier!" He shouts in reply, venom packed into his voice. The two were glaring so deep into one another's eyes, with so much mutual hatred that it was hard not to believe they weren't at each other's throats.
Meaghan sighed, as loud as she possibly could and walked down the stairs. Axel smirked at her and fled deeper into their house. It's not like Meaghan would need the money once she won the Quell, sure she had a lot of competition this year and it would be hard but she'd do it and have money to spare for years and years.
"Mother, where are you!"
Meaghan stormed into the kitchen; the glistening silverware lining the sideboard reflected the light shining from the overhead lamp. Everything was present and where it should be, except for her mother.
"She's not here, sorry Meaghan. I couldn't resist." Axel laughed from the shadows of the corner and hurried to the front door and disappeared outside. A large silver bread knife sat on the side closest to her. Oh if only she could kill him. Thoughts of murder filled her mind. At least she had the Games to look forward to.
Lock Arakora Skull, 17 years old
People used to always ask why Lock added a skull to his name. It wasn't part of his family tree, no one else in any generation that had come before him who he was related to used the word skull. The Arakora family had a very different system for names; they had a tradition to stick to birth names until the child was able to speak. Lock, around the age of four was given the task, like everyone else related to him had been given, to add a name to distinguish himself among everyone else. The name was to be added after his surname. His mother was known with Kai attached to the end, his father used Black and his two twin siblings both shared Raven.
At four Lock latched onto the one thing he was always interested in. Gothic literature. In his mind he remembered a book his parents once read to him. The main character was called Skull. No last name, nothing to attach him to anyone else. Lock liked this. His name from that moment on became Lock Arakora Skull. He was happy with it.
The reaping was starting and Lock couldn't help but feel a tight pain in his chest, a knot in his stomach kept him from keeping up with his parents and siblings.
"Come on slow coach!" Anastasia said, falling behind a few steps and pulling on his arm. She was a pretty young woman; Lock and Alluro were incredibly protective over their sister.
The Square was tightly packed as far as they could see, as blood was taken from his outstretched finger the Peacekeeper handed him a small rectangular piece of plastic with a bold '1' on the front. He didn't know what this meant straight away, but as he crossed the threshold into the main Square posts were standing on the corner of every section. One's were at the front.
Lock assumed this was how they were sorting everything out, since twenty four had to be picked from District One they had to have some way of organizing it. He guessed that only two from each number were allowed to be a part of the Games.
Would he be the tribute from section one? He wasn't sure as he took his place and watched as the mayor limped onto the stage without a smile or a frown.
"Each of you has been given a number and are now standing in your appropriate sections since we require twenty four of you to join us as a tribute in this very special Quell. Each section will take it in turns, One will start and a male and female will be chosen, then we proceed up until section Twelve." He stopped, looked out among them all and sat back down. Not reading the treaty or anything.
Hushed whispers overtook everyone. Lock couldn't remember a time when the mayor hadn't read the treaty before.
A woman with puffed purple lips swept to the stage. Capitol people were becoming less annoying, everyone was so used to them all. Lock just found their outfits enticing. He was always one to wear different clothes.
A girl was picked from the bowl but someone took her place on stage. Her red hair and piercing was the most outstanding thing about her. Some people seemed to know her; Lock had no idea who she was.
Renelda Raye walked on over to the other bowl and pulled out a slip. Lock's eyes shifted to his tattoos on his arms. One read 'Presently my soul grows stronger,' the other in cursive writing read 'Hesitating then no longer.' A name was read out.
Lock ran to the stage.
He wasn't so sure what overpowered him, he knew of the urge to volunteer deep inside him but sitting round that fire earlier he never thought he'd do it.
The rest of the reaping carried on, the red haired girl kept staring at Lock but his eyes were on Angelo as more tributes walked up to the stage.
He was crying. It was enough to make Lock cry.
Meaghan Paar, 16 years old
Meaghan was attempting to not burst downstairs and throttle her mother who had finally turned up. She seemed to be in an angry mood so she did her best to stay well away, but she was screaming for Meaghan to hurry up. Axel hadn't returned, he was probably already in the Square with that smug smile of his, just waiting for his chance at glory.
Despite her mother's screams Meaghan didn't stop at applying her bright red lipstick. She rolled her eyes as she heard her mother advancing up the steps and put the lipstick down on her desk and met her at the top of the stairs.
"Coming mother." She said in a sweet voice, Meaghan's mother repressed the urge to throw up all over her. She wasn't one for sweet. Meaghan giggled at this.
Despite Meaghan's meager attempts at starting conversation her mother seemed to be trying to keep as quiet as possible. Even when they were handed a bold 1 at the desk and ushered into the Square she refused to say any form of farewell as she took off to the back of the crowd.
Meaghan couldn't wait to see what she was like when she came to say goodbye. Would she be happy or angry? Maybe she'd make her like Axel less. That made her even more excited as she stood impatiently in her section, tapping her foot harshly against the concrete.
The mayor walked out, Meaghan admired the way his face seemed void of any emotion. It was an ability to be envious of if you didn't have it. He explained something about the numbers and to everyone's confusion just sat down and let Renelda advance on to the stage and begin the reaping.
Her outrageous outfit was enough to make her giggle again, Meaghan thought she was beginning to become addicted to that insane noise that erupted from her lips whenever she was happy, or pretending to be happy.
Meaghan didn't waste any time, another girl from a few spaces to her left dashed out but with one tug of her pretty blonde hair she howled with pain and stopped her sprint. With a smile on her face she made it next to Renelda.
"Oh oops, sorry. I volunteer!" Meaghan said, someone laughed in the square causing Meaghan to smile and laugh herself. Seriously, she had a problem.
Renelda nodded to this and read out the name of the male chosen. Her eyes swept over those from the first section who raced to the stage, she caught sight of Axel having some difficulty with a rather round young man. He didn't make it.
A guy with beautiful blonde hair and tattoos on his arms announced that his name was Lock Arakora Skull. She didn't know who he was but she smiled at him anyway. Renelda after congratulating the two of them proceeded to the next section. As some other girl took her place on the stage she caught sight of Axel.
His face was scrunched up into a look of pure hated. No, not hatred. Something worse than hatred. Was there a word worse than hatred? Meaghan had no idea, but Axel looked ready to murder her.
She couldn't contain the final giggle that pierced through her lips at the thought of her goodbyes. Axel was sure to make them fun.
Lock Arakora Skull, 17 years old
Angelo and Lock's other friends were forced to wait outside. According to the Peacekeeper that guarded their room family was first priority. The Justice Building this year had been upgraded to fit enough rooms for the twenty four tributes. Lock wasn't fazed by his competition, some kind of newfound strength burned from within his chest. He wasn't so out of his mind as to say he was looking forward to killing, but he had confidence in his ability. He was ready.
Alluro and Anastasia were standing either side of him, their hands were on his shoulders and between sobs that broke from their throats they muttered soothing words of encouragement. Lock expected the two of them, especially Alluro who was always a bit more feisty that Anastasia to be angry but neither of them expressed any form of this, they were going to miss their younger brother. It formed a dull ache inside Lock; he was going to miss them too.
"Lock Arakora Skull, there is no point acting as if you are assured victory. It would be nice to see you back; I love you since you are my son. I must ask though, why?" His mother was such a stern woman who rarely showed her emotions. He wasn't expecting her to be crying for him, it was nice to actually hear that she loved him. It was more than his dad was saying; he was standing at the side glaring out the window at the rain that was starting to fall.
"I live in a District full of people who fight for the glory of the Games. I felt it my obligation to my home to be a part of their shared love. I can win this, you must all believe in me until I get home." Lock announced without a slight shake in his tone, he wasn't emotional. His unwavering determination made his twin siblings stop sobbing. If he had increased their belief in him then Lock was happy. He smiled at the two of them.
"Time to go now." The Peacekeeper at the door said, barely holding back the weeping Angelo.
Lock's mother departed with a nod of the head, Alluro and Anastasia cuddled into his chest once more before saying goodbye. It was his father who left last; he smiled at him and tossed something through the air. Lock's reflexes were good enough; he snatched it and looked down.
The pin was old and worn; three golden letters barely readable were scrawled across the metal. E.A.P.
When Lock looked up his dad was gone from the room.
"Maybe we could change it? There are loads of other people angry at not volunteering. You know maybe the mayor will let them take your space. You weren't yourself out there, come on… please let's just go ask." Angelo was on the verge of smacking his fists on the floor as he hooked his arms around Lock's leg. The sight was horrible; in the face of his one true love in this state Lock felt tears prick the corners of his eyes.
"I am sorry Angelo." Lock couldn't say anything else without threatening to break down any further. Varsity and Braxton were staring at him in disbelief.
"A-After Hezekiah. Why would you do this?" Over Angelo's cries it was hard to hear the words but Lock managed to understand what he had said. He was selfish, the four of them had mourned and wept for Hezekiah. Now he was putting these three through the same thing. 'Not if I survive,' he thought. He was going to win for them.
The Peacekeeper had to pry Angelo's fingers one by one from Lock to get him to leave. As the door closed the first sob in such a long time echoed around the room. He fell to the ground.
Meaghan Paar, 16 years old
"If you were thinking of volunteering you could have told me. I wouldn't have been so hard on you all this time." Her mother said as she fell to her knees in front of Meaghan. A smile lit up her face as she twirled a string of her daughters red hair. Meaghan didn't know how to react to this act of love from her mother. She wasn't entirely sure if it was love but it was something she hadn't ever had from this woman.
She'd always favoured Axel, barely paying any attention to her other than screaming for her again and again. She thought she'd be happy receiving some form of love from her mother; instead she just stared blankly into her eyes. Her mother didn't notice this look devoid of any form of emotion. She wrapped her arms around Meaghan's shoulders and buried her face in her neck.
It was a weird moment for Meaghan. She didn't hate this woman, but any form of love had vanished a long time ago. She didn't want her to go so she pressed her hand against her mother's back and patted it slowly.
Her mother was torn off and thrown to the side. She yelped with pain as she landed on her wrist, Meaghan thought she heard the faintest sound of a crack. There wasn't a Peacekeeper on guard; the door was just swinging on its hinges with no one there.
Axel threw his whole body against Meaghan causing her to topple out of her chair. She twisted ever so slightly to avoid landing on her arm in an awkward angle that would surely snap a bone. Out of the corner of her eye she saw her mother staring wide-eyed at the two of them.
She wasn't going to help.
Meaghan tried to stand up but felt clammy hands tighten around her throat. A searing pain overtook her chest, she felt dizzy as he pushed her head back and forth into the royal blue carpet.
"It was my turn, little sister it was my turn this year! You dare think yourself better than me, that bitch over there worshipped me and now you are going into the Games! WELL I DON'T THINK SO!"
He raised her head higher into the air, Meaghan wasn't ready to die. Killed by her own brother wasn't the way she intended to go but she was defenceless. He brought her head closer to the carpet ready for the crunch before she fell from his hand and landed with a softer thud only causing her head to pound ever so slightly.
Axel was unconscious, his head to the left of her leg. A Peacekeeper with a satisfied smile on his face lifted his gun and put it back in his holster. There hadn't been a gunshot, so was he dead?
A slight moan escaping from Axel's lips signified he indeed was not. Before he could muster up the strength for another attack the Peacekeeper dragged him away. Another one accompanied her mother outside as she cradled her broken wrist.
She had nearly died, her own brother had nearly strangled her to death yet she felt excited. The Hunger Games is where she had to be. All that death around her, she couldn't help the fit of giggles that took hold of her.
I hope you enjoyed this chapter! Please review, favourite and follow, I'd love you forever ;)