I wake up to the rumble of a hovercraft passing over the house. Jumping out of bed, I reach for my closet. Hanging behind four identical grey jumpsuits is a cute little yellow dress - reaping clothes. I hate the dress, with my red hair and the bright yellow of the fabric, I'm far too noticeable. The grey jumpsuits may be ugly but it helps me blend in, after all a thief cant be seen picking your pocket. Nevertheless I remind myself that not in everyone in the community house can afford the same luxuries.
Living in a community house is not the easy life that the capitol advertises. Sure we are better fed and we have a place to stay buts its no home.
There are only a few orphans in District 5 and the community house is very small. Since the Capitol needs our district for power most people have plenty of food and money. I am one of the few who are not as fortunate.
Orphans like me must take the tesserae so that everyone in the community has enough to eat. I cant even remember how many times my name is in it today.
Its easier for me, I know how to find food elsewhere. I'm smart enough to know who is worth stealing from and quick enough to get away when things go bad.
I hate stealing from these people, its wrong, but I don't know what else I can do.
Some of the nicer things I've stolen I don't sell, I keep them for when I turn eighteen, when I'm finally out of this place. I know where I can find good money selling these things. With it I wont have to worry about going hungry again.
These old trinkets have other uses though. Each year I take along one item to reassure myself a reminder that even if I am chosen, I have the skills to get through the games. After all what else could an orphan like me use as a tribute token?
Scanning my supply of jewellery and odd things, my eye stops on a long hairpin. It has a small bead, coloured the most beautiful shade of electric blue . On either side it holds two sparkling crystals fitted onto the pin. This is realise, is a logical choice as I need something to hold my hair in place for the reaping.
Quickly I slip on the dress and look at my reflection in the dust window. I decide to put my hair up in a small bun, holding it in place with the hair pin. Judging by the light outside it must be time for breakfast. Others will be asleep, taking advantage of the day off but going down early is the best way of ensuring to get the food hot; cold food does not improve its taste.
Once I'm in the food hall I'm approached by a community worker, "take a scoop, eat it and leave – there's no point hanging around here, getting in every ones way." She says it to everyone and after a few years of living here the words have lost its effect. I've see people in District 5 wonder why children in the community house are so miserable, its because of people like her, reminding us that we are "wastes of space" and that there were reasons we were brought here, she bets that we were just as useless now as we were when we were dumped here. She may not be a threat to me but I follow her orders and sooner than I think I'm walking down to the town centre