Disclaimer: I don't own the Hunger Games, but I do own the OC's.
This just randomly came to me as I read the book again. I had a cool idea in mind and thought I'd try my hand at writing it out. I know that the Hunger Games are written in first person, but I'm not comfortable writing in that style.
Her stylist had put her in a plum silk gown with a jewel neckline that went all the way to her feet. The material embraced one shoulders with a rope-like strap on the other shoulder. Her hair was up in an elegant, yet simple hairstyle, with small curls of hair framing her face. She heard Caesar make his opening spiel, getting the audience ready for her. Soon she would have to go on that stage and relieve the last few weeks. It was going to be a long three hours, watching herself get reaped, and what she did in the arena that got her to this point. She was not looking forward to revisiting the deaths. She didn't think she would be able to watch with out showing how much they had affected her.
"It'll all be over soon, dear. Then we'll be back in 8 for a while before the Victory Tour. " Her mentor told her comfortingly and placed a reassuring hand on her shoulder. Whispering in her ear, her mentor reminded her. "Try to be happy and excited to have won. Little reactions are fine, but nothing too big."
She nodded and turned to her mentor. "Does it get better, Cecelia? Do the memories ever go away?"
Cecelia shook her head. "I'm afraid they don't. It's been eighteen years since I won my Games and I still have nightmares every once in a while. My husband and children help me cope."
"Let's hear it for the victor of the 72nd annual Hunger Games: Olesya Reynar!" Caesar Flickerman called out and the audience went wild. Olesya put a smile on her face and held her head high as she felt herself get lifted up to the stage along with Cecelia, her escort, stylist and prep team. Caesar took her hand and led her to the gilded victor's throne that had been put next to his chair. "It's lovely to see you again Olesya. It seems your stylist has done it again. "
"Thanks Caesar. He's brilliant isn't he?" The audience cheered.
"Take a bow for your amazing work, Balthar." Caesar said cheerfully. Olesya smiled as Balthar took a modest bow. Olesya liked her stylist. Balthar wasn't ignorant or completely clueless like her escort or her prep team. He was brilliant at his job and made sure Olesya was always dressed to impress.
"Before we start the recap of your time here and in the arena I want to ask, when you were reaped did you ever think you'd come out as the victor?"
Olesya shook her head. "No Caesar, I hoped I would become the victor, or at least make it to the final three. I think that the career tributes are the only ones that come into the arena thinking they can win."
"Well, you certainly proved them wrong didn't you?"
Olesya just smiled and nodded. "Well let's get started then." Caesar said as the recap began. As the scene of her own reaping appeared, she steeled herself for all the horribleness to come. Thankfully they only showed the highlights of games for these interviews.
"Girls first." District 8's escort, Jacia Valetta said walking to one the reaping bowl on the left side of the stage. Her hand moved within the bowl for a bit before, she picked a paper and brought it out. Jacia walked to the microphone and opened the paper. "Olesya Reynar." The camera zoomed in on Olesya's shocked face. She was standing between a girl with curly red hair and brown eyes and a girl with wavy chestnut brown hair and gray eyes. Their hands were clasped in each other's. Olesya's friends squeezed her hands before backed away from her. Olesya gave the girls a tight smile, before making the quiet walk up to the stage. As soon as she got up, Jacia moved on to the boys. "Colton Texaly." As with Olesya, the camera zoomed in on the 18 year old with mousy brown hair and gray eyes, as he walked up the steps to the stage.
"Shake hands now." Jacia told them. Once they had done so, she turned them back to face their District. "Your District 8 tributes: Olesya Reynar and Colton Texaly." She was the only one who clapped. Colton and Olesya were then led into separate rooms inside the Justice building.
"There are the tributes from District 7 dressed as trees, and there are District 8's tributes. That's a new look for them." Claudius Templesmith commented as Olesya and Colton's chariot rolled past. They were dressed to look like mannequins. Colton wore a white shirt and white pants that were covered in designer notes and measurements all written in blue ink. There were also dashed and solid lines indicating where to or not to cut. Olesya was dressed similarly in a white strapless dress with the same markings as Colton's outfit. Her hair was up in a bun. Like all the other tributes, they were waving, and smiling. Olesya blew a few kisses to the crowd, which the males eagerly caught.
"Yes they do look more memorable now than previous tributes from their district." Caesar Flickerman replied. The carriages stopped in front of President Snow's mansion.
Snow stood from his chair and walked to the podium. "Welcome tributes. We honor your bravery and your sacrifice. We wish you happy Hunger Games, and may the odds be ever in you favor." The carriages rolled to the training center after Snow finished speaking.
"Make a warm welcome for District 8's Olesya Reynar!" Caesar Flickerman exclaimed as she walked down to the stage with a huge smile and waved at the audience. She wore an artfully etched tulip dress. As the crowd settled down, Olesya took her seat and Caesar began.
"What was your life like back home?"
Olesya smiled at him. "Well Caesar, I went to school for part of the day, as I'm 16. I would walk my little brother home after school. We lived above my mother's dress shop where I helped her make dresses; Aidan even helped out in the shop. I had two good friends and a boyfriend of three years." The audience clapped and cheered as Olesya blushed and smiled shyly.
"He's a lucky man to have a beautiful girl like you." Caesar told her. She smiled brightly. "He's told me that himself once or twice."
Caesar smiled at her, and then his face became serious. "Going on to a more serious topic, how did you feel when you heard your name announced?"
Olesya's own smile dropped as a more thoughtful expression filled her face. "I was completely shocked when I got reaped. I really wasn't expecting it, as no one in my family had been reaped before."
"Finally, how has your time in the Capitol been so far?"
Olesya laughed and her eyes twinkled. "I am amazed by the luxury here. I absolutely love the clothes my stylist made for me. They are the most beautiful clothes I have ever seen," She laughed again. "and my mother makes beautiful dresses. The food is fantastic as well. I've probably put on a few pounds." She giggled.
"I've probably put on a few pounds as well, but it doesn't show does it?" He asked looking out into the audience. Olesya smiled as they all assured him that he looked fabulous. The buzzer went as he got the audience under control again. Caesar took her hand, kissed it and raised it up over her head, as they stood. "Olesya Reynar from District 8!" Olesya beamed as the audience cheered, before heading back to her seat by the other tributes.
Olesya stared out at the arena as her plate stopped moving. The golden cornucopia was in the middle of a grassy plain. There were weapons and supplies all around it, but the most valuable and useful weapons and supplies were inside the cornucopia. Encircling the grassy plain were trees: tall trees that seemed to go on forever. Olesya shuddered, the wall of trees making her uneasy. She flicked her long braided chestnut brown hair to her back and placed her feet so that she was ready when the gong sounded. When it did sound, she ran towards the cornucopia, grabbed a backpack and a knife and ran. Only when she had gone deep into the forest did she look in her pack. She had a knife, a pack of beef jerky and another of dried fruit, an empty canteen, and a rolled up sleeping bag. As she was putting her supplies away, a twig cracked and Olesya raised a knife in her hand ready to throw. Colton appeared with his hands in front of his face. His nose was bloody, as was his right arm.
"What happened to you?"
"That brute from District 1 knocked me to the ground, and got my arm with his sword, but I knocked it away from him. Just barely got away." He replied, breathlessly.
"Want to be allies? We'd have a better chance if we stick together." Olesya asked holding out her hand. Colton grimaced grabbing at his injured arm. He gave her his other hand. "Allies, but only until the final eight, presuming we make it that far."
Olesya nodded and they shook hands.
"We should see if we can find something for your arm." She said. "I remember the survival skills instructor saying that moss is really absorbent. We should look for some."
They found some moss growing at the bottom of a tree a little ways away. Olesya grabbed a couple of handfuls and handed one handful to Colton. She set one on his right arm, as he put the other on his nose. It did the trick in stopping the flow of blood.
They walked further into the forest. "Cecelia stressed the point of not lighting any fires. They're beacons for the Careers. I got a sleeping bag in my pack, if we need more warmth."
"Our jackets should retain some heat, but having something for extra warmth is good. You got any food in that pack?"
"Well that's good. At least one of us is prepared."
They settled in for the night awhile later in a little clearing. The anthem played and the faces of the dead tributes appeared in the sky: the girl from 3, both from 5, both from 6, the boy from 7, the boy from 9, both from 10, the girl from 11, and both from 12. After the picture of the boy from 12, the Capitol seal came back with a final bit of music and then the sky went dark.
Colton was the first to break the silence. "So, besides us and the careers, there are four tributes left. Twelve tributes remaining."
"That's seems about right, the careers, us, Rylan from 3, Laurel from 7, Sylvetta from 9 and Alto from 11. It's a pity that the girl from 10, Tallulah, is dead, I rather liked her."
"Actually it's a good thing she's dead, because you don't have to worry about killing her." Colton told her. "That's the trouble with these games. You get attached to someone during training, or in the games, and then you have to watch them die, or kill them yourself. That's why I'm leaving if we make to the final eight, because I don't want to be responsible for your death."
"Thank you. I agree though. I couldn't go home knowing that I killed you. I'll take first watch Colton. You need sleep with your injury."." Olesya put her hand up as he began to protest. "I'll let you know when I get tired. Do you want the sleeping bag?"
"No, but I'll ask if I end up needing it." Colton said as he leaned up against a tree put up his hood and closed his eyes.
"Did you know we've made it father than any other tribute from our district? Well except our mentors of course." Colton asked the next morning. They were up in the trees eating a few of the dried fruits along with strips of beef jerky.
"Really? I thought some made it to the second day."
"Nope, most of them died in the bloodbath, and the few who make it out alive are killed by the careers before nightfall. out alive are usually killed by the Careers before nightfall. We have three victors Woof, Damask, and Cecelia. Most Districts only have two or three victors, except for the Career districts of course. I heard that the more recent victors from 1 and 2 live in the Capitol, because their districts ran out of houses in the Victor's Village. District 12 only has one victor and he won the 2nd Quarter Quell."
"How do know how many victors the other Districts have? There not really broadcasted, well of the ones who aren't famous."
"I've watched the reapings of other Districts." Colton said with a shrug. "We should go find some water, seeing as we're not going to last long without it, and maybe some food too." He looked over at Olesya. "You good with those knives?"
Olesya shrugged. "Not as good as the Careers, but I'm rather decent." She said as they climbed down and started walking.
"I'm okay with a sword. I did okay at hand to hand combat during training though."
"Maybe we could fashion you a long needle and you could throw that."
Colton smirked. "It would be funny to see the Careers' faces if I kill one of them with a needle. Maybe we could find some poison and put that at the end of the needle, or needles."
Olesya laughed. "The mighty career tributes brought down by poisoned needles. That would be rather funny."
They ate well that night; Olesya had killed a rabbit with one of her knives. They roasted it over a fire in the early evening. The fire was put out before the sky went black. Only one tribute had died that day, Sylvetta from 9. As they had done the previous night, Olesya had first watch while Colton slept
"Olesya wake up, we need to move and fast!" Colton whispered shaking her awake, before dawn the next morning. Olesya's eyes popped opened, and she nodded. She stuffed the sleeping bag in her pack and grabbed her knives. She heard the cannon go off and then the sound of laughter and heavy running feet.
"Up there. The dense foliage with give us some cover." She told him as she ran to a tree with thick leafy branches and started climbing. Colton had made it to her branch just as the careers came into view. They weren't very high, but they were mostly covered by leaves.
"Did you see the look on his face?" Kern was saying below them.
"Pathetic." Teena replied.
"Only four more tributes to go." Electra said happily.
Talon moved to the shady part of the tree and an evil grin filled his face as he saw Olesya and Colton perched up in the tree. He threw his spear at Colton and it went right through his heart. The cannon boomed as Olesya gasped in horror, but anger soon replaced the horror as she took the spear out of Colton's body and threw it at Electra. The spear pierced her stomach. She slumped to the ground. Talon growled and grabbed the knife that Teena was holding.
"I'm really going to kill that brat now." He growled as he flung the knife at Olesya. Olesya dodged the knife by climbing onto a different branch. After it struck the tree, she took it out and put it with her other knives.
"Why'd you throw my knife?" Teena yelled. "Your spear is right there in Electra's stomach. She pointed at his district partner's body. "Because she wasn't near me, you were though. Besides that knife was Electra's." Talon growled out.
"Calm down you two. The little tree rat has to come down sooner or later. You can kill her then, Talon. You can have whatever weapon she has, Teena." Kern said calmly. All the while the Rilla and Rylan stayed quiet. Rilla looked up at Olesya with a sad smile.
"So we wait for her to come down? That's no fun." Jaden said.
"We'll have to move, so the Capitol can retrieve his and Electra's bodies, and she'll have to move too. We'll leave when she does." Kern said pointing in Olesya's direction. Olesya stayed in her tree not moving until the anthem appeared in the sky. She saw Electra's face, Colton's face, and Alto's before the sky went dark.
"There are only eight of us left." Talon crowed. "You get first watch Jaden. Don't let her escape."
Olesya waited until the other careers were asleep. She narrowly evaded Jaden's spear jumped from tree, to another one. She did this several times, before climbing down and ran further and further in the never ending forest.
Olesya spent the next day fashioning herself a couple of needles, of varying thicknesses, from long sticks with her knives. Once they were done, she went hunting and took down a few squirrels. Olesya made a small fire, skinned the squirrels with one of her knives, and roasted them over the fire. When they were done, she took the piece of plastic that Colton had grabbed during the bloodbath, wrapped the roasted squirrels in it, and put in her pack. She then found a river several yards away. She washed her knives and needles in the water. She filled up her canteen and splashed water on her face. She went back to her fire, and dumped the water from her canteen on it, before returning to the river. As she returned to the river, a parachute floated down towards her. She smiled and caught it in her hands. "Thank you Cecelia." She said looking to the sky. She sat down on a smooth rock by the river and opened the parachute. Inside was a loaf of bread that made Olesya's smile brighter. This wasn't the Capitol's fancy bread; this was bread from District 8. She looked up at the sky again. "Thank you District 8. I hope Colton and I have made you proud."
"You're pretty decent with those knives, almost as good as Electra was. Being able to use more than one weapon is good though."
Olesya looked up from skinning her rabbit, knife still in hand. Upon seeing Rilla coming out from the trees, she moved to draw her other knife. Rilla had a makeshift trident and a spear with her.
"Where's your pack?" She asked.
Rilla shrugged. "Back at the cornucopia I suppose. They're probably eating or sharping their weapons. Jaden's probably trying to fashion a trident again. He's mad that I made one and that it works." She stayed by the tree, eying Olesya's knives.
"Why aren't you with them? I thought the careers stayed together till the end." She asked curiously. Rilla pulled a leaf from a low hanging branch. She looked it over, as she talked.
"I got tired of being a career. I only really was in the career pack, because my mentor told me that it was safest place for the most part. He also told me to separate from them before they turned on me, so I did. It might have been a little earlier than he would have wanted, but besides myself, there are only four careers left. Well the boys don't consider Rylan to be a career, just a tribute lucky enough to be part of the pack. He's smarter than the other guys. Don't tell them I said that."She said with short laughed. "You know, people can have more than one alliance." Olesya looked at her, warily. "Why would you want to ally with me, why not with Laurel, or leave the pack with you district partner?"
"I would probably get an axe in the back from Laurel, and Jaden would never leave the career pack. I like your spirit, intelligence and resourcefulness. I also like how you avenged the death of your district partner. You can hunt which means you won't starve; the careers can't say the same. Well Jaden can fish, but he won't."
"Even if the careers didn't have the cornucopia, they still wouldn't starve because of all the sponsors they have." Olesya said grumpily. "Whose is your mentor anyway?"
"My mentor is the famous Finnick Odair. District 4's legendary ladies' man."
Olesya laughed at that and finished skinning her rabbit. She put it on a stick and started roasting it over the small fire she had built earlier. "My friend Aliana thinks he's the handsomest man alive. He's handsome enough, but I wouldn't go that far."
Rilla laughed. "Don't tell him that. He might get jealous of your boyfriend."
"If you're hungry, you can have some rabbit when it's done. That's what allies do don't they? Share food and tactics." Olesya said with a small smile. Rilla smiled and came to sit near her.
"Olesya Reynar, dressmaker from District 8." Olesya said holding out her hand. Rilla smiled and shook it. "Rilla Rudolphine, fisherman's daughter from District 4."
Rilla told her about the careers as they ate the rabbit. "Electra was an extreme girly girl, even though she trained at the academy since she was little. She liked the weapons that didn't require her to get dirty: knives, spears, the bow and arrow. The bow and arrow was her main weapon, and she was good with it. She was pretty skilled at knife throwing as well. Talon got in fight with another male volunteer at the District 1 reaping, and twisted a knife into the other boy's gut. He went on the stage afterward, surrounded by Peacekeepers. He told all of us this with a smile on his face. He can kill with just about anything."
"Is everyone from District 1 that bloodthirsty?" Olesya asked, with an eyebrow raised.
"I don't know, but I do know some boys back home who are just like Talon. They were all upset that Jaden volunteered." Rilla said shaking her head. "I'm only here, because it was either me or my 18 year old sister who was about to get married. Kern is just like Talon, and so was Teena. Jaden, pretends like he's all that, but he's not. He can use a spear pretty well and a trident if he could get his hands on one. I preferred Rylan's company over any of the careers. He was quiet, but smart, really smart for his age. Unfortunately Kern took his head off with his sword after Teena died."
Olesya had a thoughtful look on her face. "We should do something about that, Rilla. All that power can't be good for the brain or one's ego."
Rilla smirked, approvingly. "No, it's not good thing. They get cocky and overconfident. You have a plan?"
Olesya smiled. "I do. Is there some poison in one of the containers at the cornucopia?" Rilla nodded. "We'll get the poison, and cover the tips of my needles with it, and then throw them at the boys."
"Sounds like a plan, but we need to get them away from the cornucopia long enough to get in, grab the poison and get out. We need a diversion. The mines!" Rilla exclaimed. Olesya looked at her curiously. "Aren't the mines deactivated after the gong goes off?"
"Yes, but Rylan dug them all up and placed them around the pile of food, to discourage other tributes. Twelve of them are above ground and twelve are buried. The twelve hidden ones are activated, but the other twelve are just to frighten others off. He showed me how to reactivate them. I'll grab one and have the Talon and Kern chase after me, while you get the poison. You can get Kern and Talon with the needles as they return to the cornucopia."
"That sounds good. Where should we meet up again?"
"On this side of the river. Now the poison is in the black box closet to the mouth of the cornucopia. It's in a clear vile, and is a deep purple color. There should be two small vials of it , but one should be enough. It's very lethal and gets to work as soon as it makes contact with skin, so make sure you don't any on your skin."
"Got it. Can you climb trees? I feel safer sleeping in trees." Olesya asked.
"I don't excel at climbing trees, but I can manage." Rilla told her. They stomped out the fire and Olesya located a suitable tree for them to spend the night in.
The next morning they ate fish that Rilla had caught earlier, before they headed over to the Cornucopia. The career camp was two propped up tents next to the Cornucopia. Talon was sitting on a black container sharpening his sword while Kern was practicing with a mace. Jaden was on guard duty. Twelve of the mines were in a circle around the cornucopia, but the other twelve were out of sight, just like Rilla had said. Olesya hid in one of the trees while Rilla rushed forward and grabbed one of the mines. As expected all three Careers chased after her. Olesya waited until she could no longer hear them, before she scurried over to the black container and opened it. The vials of poison were underneath a water-proof tent. She grabbed both vials of the poison and scurried back to the trees. She spread a couple leaves on the ground and laid her needles down on them. She then opened one vial and poured poison onto the points of the needles, leaving the handle free. She rotated the needles as she poured so that each needle had an even covering. Olesya wrapped her needles in a clean leaf to dry. She scaled a tree and waited for the careers to return. After what seemed like hours later, they returned to their camp with dirt and soot on their faces. Olesya drew out her needles, and took careful aim on Kern. "This is for you Colton." She whispered as she threw two needles at him. One needle sank into his neck, while the other went into his back. A proud, satisfied smirk filled Olesya's face as she watched him collapse onto the grass. She was about to throw another poisoned needle at Talon, but he was searching the trees, presumably for her, having seen Kern in a heap on the ground. She swung from tree to tree until she was close to the river. She climbed down and walked the rest of the way. Rilla was standing there waiting, as they had decided.
"How did it go?" She asked as Olesya came into view.
"Worked perfectly. The effect of the poison was immediate, that and I got hits on the back of Kern's neck and his back." Olesya replied.
Kern, Jaden and Laurel's faces all appeared in the sky that night.
"How did Laurel die?" Olesya wondered out loud. Rilla shrugged on the branch next to her. "I don't know. She might have gotten caught in the explosion from when I activated the mine and threw it at the Careers. Jaden was killed by Talon. He would get angry at anything that he saw as a slight to him. He probably saw my leaving the pack, as a slight to him. That means that there are only three of us left."
Olesya looked over at her. "You want to break the alliance now or wait till morning?"
"No, it'll take both of to take Talon down."
The next morning they finished up the rest of the food in their packs, before heading to the cornucopia. The grassy field that the Cornucopia stood on was empty. Talon was nowhere in sight.
"We'll get the best view from on top of the cornucopia." Rilla said as she headed for the cornucopia. Rilla helped Olesya up on to the cornucopia, and then Olesya helped her up. No sooner had Rilla gotten up on top of it, before Talon appeared. He pushed Olesya off the Cornucopia and then pinned Rilla down. Olesya fell on top of her right ankle in the grass. She tried to stand back up, but her ankle wouldn't support her weight. She collapsed on the ground in pain.
"Did you like my present, Rilla? He wasn't worth the name of career tribute. It was way too easy. I'm not going to go easy on you. You deserted us for the tree rat, and for that you're going to pay."
Olesya slowly made her way over to the cornucopia and sat at the bottom for a minute. She tried to climb up to the top, trying to ignore the pain shooting through her ankle. It took a couple tries, but she got up. Rilla's body and face were bloody from Talon's knives and his fists. She then caught Talon's forgotten sword. It was lying on the top of the cornucopia a little ways off. Olesya limped over to it and picked it up. She then limped over to Talon and sent the sword right through his guts. He fell on top of Rilla, but Olesya quickly got him off of her, shoving him off the cornucopia completely. She fell by Rilla's side, no longer able to stand. Rilla smiled up at her. "You're going to win Olesya. Tell my parents I love them."
Olesya wiped the tears from her eyes. "You're not going to die, Rilla. I won't let you."
Rilla shook her head and griped Olesya's hand. "It's better this way, can't you see? If I miraculously survive my injuries, then we'll be forced to kill each other. Talon wasn't the last career alive for no reason. He knew what he was doing."
Rilla took her last breath five minutes later, and her eyes dulled. Olesya sat there not moving, just griping Rilla's limp hand in hers and looking at Rilla. She didn't notice the Claudius' voice proclaiming her the victor. She looked numb and lost to the world. Not even the arrival of the hovercraft changed her expression. It wasn't till the peacekeepers tried to move Rilla's body, did she show signs of life. In the end, the Peacekeepers had to sedate her in order to bring her and Rilla's body onto the hovercraft.
The screen went black as the recap ended. The audience cheered. Olesya, however, closed her eyes, and tried to push back emotions and memories. Caesar nudged her, and when she opened her eyes, nodded toward the right wing of the stage. President Snow came out from that wing with with a young boy behind him carrying the box which held the victor's crown. Caesar took Olesya's hand and they stood as Snow came to them. Snow took the crown out of the box and placed it on Olesya's head.
"Congratulations, Miss Reynar." He said.
"Thank you." Olesya replied timidly, but politely.
The next day, Balthar put Olesya in a multicolored silk-blend color-block patchwork dress with short floaty sleeves, and a square neckline. She was going to be interviewed by Caesar today. It was going to take place in a quiet, yet cozy living room . The change in location was to make the interview seem less formal, and possibly minimize outbreaks. The aftermath of her victory tour, had not been good.
"Here we have Olesya Reynar, this year's victor of the annual Hunger Games." Caesar said as she took her seat on the sofa next to his chair. Olesya smiled softly and waved at the camera before directing her attention on Caesar.
"I think we were rather amazed at how quickly you became lethal with those knives and needles in the arena. Could you tell us about that? Was it hard to acquire the skill or did it come naturally?"
After a moment of thought and hesitation, Olesya answered. "It was bit of both Caesar. My mother's a dressmaker, and taught me everything she knows. So, I was already familiar with needles and the anatomy of the human body when I entered the training center. I didn't immediately go for the weapons, but when I did, I went to the knife station. I figured they would be easiest to conceal and throw at a moment's notice. The rest of training was used practicing, so that I was decent at best when I entered the arena. I found that throwing the needles was like throwing a skinny knife. They're pretty much the same in execution."
"You were decent with the spear as well it seemed." Caesar said soft chuckle. "We saw that after Talon killed you District partner, Colton. Talon's District partner, Electra was your first kill. What was going through your mind at that point?
Olesya's eyebrows furrowed at his question. Her first kill was not something to be proud of. It was disturbing that the Capitol thought otherwise. "That was the first time I had thrown a spear, so that shot was pretty much just luck. I was furious with the careers and especially with Talon. I wanted him to pay for killing Colton. It just made sense to take out his District partner, since he killed mine. I didn't know Colton all that well, but he was from home and that's what mattered. In the arena you have a sense of loyalty and possessiveness towards your District partner, because they're all you have left to remind you of home. You know that you won't be welcomed back home if you kill your District partner. That's also why I fashioned the needles that killed Kern. It had been Colton's idea to put poison on the needles; though it was Rilla who actually helped me find the poison for the needles."
"Let's talk about Rilla for a bit. How did you decide that you could trust her and that she would be a good ally? Why did she help you get the poison? You were in bad shape when she died. Why was that?" Caesar asked her curiously.
"At the beginning I didn't really trust her, but she grew on me. I found that she had volunteered for her sister who was about to get married, and that she was only in the Careers because her mentor told her it would be a good idea. Our alliance was cemented when she set up a distraction for the careers, so that I could get to the cornucopia without any hassles. She had seen the poison before, so she told me what to look for. She told me it was because neither Talon nor Kern deserved to win. Rilla died a couple minutes after I had killed Talon. I was livid with him for killing the two people I really cared about in the games. I almost wish I had drawn out his death al little longer, making him feel all the pain that I had. I was more worried about Rilla at the time and intent on getting him off of her. I was sort of numb after Rilla died. I had gotten to know her, and was really fond of her. She was the closest thing I had to a friend in the arena. , and she had been killed so horribly. I don't know what happened, but my mind rather shut itself off, and I wasn't aware of anything until I woke up in that hospital." Olesya shuddered. Until yesterday, she hadn't known that she had fought the Peacekeepers trying to protect Rilla's body.
Caesar nodded as she finished. "So you didn't hear Claudius Templesmith announce her as the victor?"
Olesya shook her head. "No I didn't. I freaked out when I woke up in that hospital room. It wasn't until I saw Cecelia that I even thought of calming. She gave me the news. Its still a shock."
"I imagine it is. You must be excited to be going home though, and being able to see your family and a certain young man."
Olesya blushed and smiled softly. "I am happy to be going home, Caesar. It will be so nice to be back in 8."
Caesar smiled brightly at her. "We heard him talk about you when he was interviewed during the final eight. Here's his interview." We heard him talk about you when he was interviewed. Here's his interview." Jackson's interview appeared on the wall in front of them. Olesya let out an audible sigh when she saw Jackson's face.
"How did you and Olesya become a couple?" An off-screen reporter asked Jackson. They were standing outside of Jackson's house.
"I've known Olesya Reynar all my life. Our parents were both merchants so we were familiar with each other and what our parents did. So we were friends, it wasn't until three years that anything changed. A mutual friend of ours, a merchant's son, told me that if I didn't make a move and ask her to be mine, that he would. Being thirteen, I wasn't too fond of the idea, so I gathered my courage and asked her to be my girl after school one day. It was probably the most important decision I've ever made and I couldn't have been happier." Jackson said smiling.
"Suppose she make it out as the victor…"
"I know she's going to be victor. She's intelligent, clever, quiet and extremely agile." Jackson said interrupting the reporter.
"What will you do if or when she returns to District 8?"
Jackson smiled. "Oh that's an easy question, but I can't tell you otherwise it would ruin the surprise."
"Its almost surreal seeing him on the screen. Thank you for showing me that."
Caesar smiled at her. She was slowly relaxing, since they had gone away from the topic of her games. "I have to ask about your District token, as I've noticed a lot of women in the Capitol asking where they could find one like it. It seems to have become quite popular."
Olesya smiled brightly. She loved that her father's handiwork had become popular amongst Capitol women. It could lead to more business for her family. "This was made for me by my father on my eleventh birthday. He took silk from my mother's shop and wrapped them into tiny cords then into bigger ones and finally weaved them into the bracelet I have now. He made similar ones for my best friends on their eleventh birthdays as well."
"What is the significance of the colors: light pink, light blue lavender and white?"
"Well you see Caesar, a week before my eleventh birthday; my father brought me into my mother's dress shop and had me pick out my four favorite colors. He wouldn't tell me why or what they were for." Olesya laughed at the memory. "When I wouldn't stop asking, he told me that every father needed to know what colors his daughter liked."
"That is important to know. So he surprised you with this bracelet on your birthday?"
"He did. At breakfast, he told me to close my eyes, and when I opened them again, this was on my wrist."
"Well that is special. I'm sure he's thrilled that you wore it into the arena as your District token. One last question, are you going to come back and be a mentor?"
The question stuck Olesya the wrong way, and took a deep breath before answering. "I don't know honestly. Possibly?" She said as more of a question.
Caesar chuckled. "Thank you. I wish you the best of luck, Olesya. Olesya Reynar of District 8, the victor of the 72nd annual Hunger Games." Olesya stood up, and shook Caesar's hand. She then left with Balthar, Cecelia and the rest of her team, and they headed for the train station. A huge crowd was waiting for them, waving and cheering, wanting to get another glimpse at her. Olesya smiled and waved until the train started moving. She was finally going home!
"Here we are back in District 8, Olesya. We're home." Cecelia said beaming as the train came to a stop. Cecelia soon disappeared as soon as they reached the platform, to see her family. Olesya waved at all the people who came to see her and welcome her home. Maybe the Careers had been on to something with their talk of honoring their Districts. She didn't know if they were proud of her, but they were certainly happy to see her. Her older brother, Daric, swooped her up into his arms as soon as she got off the train. Her parents and little Aidan soon had their arms wrapped around her as well. They let her go after a while so that other people could hug her and congratulate her. Olesya had made her way into the center of the group of people from her district, when she heard a familiar voice softly saying "Welcome home beautiful girl". The people in front of her moved to the side and there in front of Olesya was Jackson. She smiled shyly at him, as the last time they had seen each other, she had broken up with him, not knowing whether she would make it back.
"Do I get a hug, beautiful girl?" He asked. Olesya's face broke out to a huge smile as she launched herself into his arms.