A/N: Thanks to charliesunshine, richards25 and coaster317 for reviewing the last chapter, I really appreciate it!
This one's for coaster317, hope you enjoy it!
"Do as I say, not as I do
Because the s***'s so deep, you can't run away
I beg to differ on the contrary
I agree with every word that you say
Talk is cheap and lies are expensive
My wallet's fat and so is my head
Hit and run and then I'll hit you again
I'm a smart-ass but I'm playing dumb."
- Billie-Joe Armstrong, 1995.
The 21st Annual Hunger Games
Timothy Harper (17), District 7 Male
Green Day - Walking Contradiction (1995)
"You'd better do as I say here," says Sam arrogantly, gesturing to what he presumes to be a safe path though the marsh. "But don't take me as an example. I know what to do all right, but actually doing it, well, that's an entirely different matter," he jokes, trying to force a laugh from me. I'm not impressed.
"You do realise, Reynolds," I reply, opting for a more serious tone than his. "That if either of us fall in, we'll be so far under that we won't be able to get ourselves out. There's nothing we can use to pull ourselves out."
"So do we go that way, then?" He asks.
"I thought you knew what you were doing, when you led us into this swamp!" I snap in reply, dumbfounded by Sam's arrogance, ignorance and stupidity.
"Yeah, I did."
"So where do we go then?"
He's such an idiot. Strong, yes, but an idiot. How this arrogant fool got through the trials in District 4, I've no idea. Not for brain, I can tell you that now.
I'm sure he recieved some sort of preferential treatment in the Training Centre. Being the son of a victor would generally lead to priveleges.
Never before has a relative of a victor set foot in the arena. Now Samuel Reynolds, son of the victor of the first Games, Fraser Reynolds, is the male tribute for District 4. He's strong but arrogant, and I'm surprised he's lasted this long. After my high training score guaranteed me a place in the Career Alliance that is usually reserved for tributes from Districts 1, 2 and 4 only, I then proceeded to become one of the five who escaped the bloodbath. Three more fell in the coming days, two being turned on after obtaining sizeable injuries (it would have been a burden for the rest of us to keep them alive), and then me and Sam got rid of the boy from Two after he was giving us a hard time about our distribution of supplies.
Now that there are only two of us left in the alliance, I'm starting to get wary that Sam could turn on me at any moment. I'm hopeful that he will wait a couple more days at least; there are still five others alive in the arena, and I reckon that Sam will want the numbers reduced before he faces the other alone.
In the meantime, we have decided to explore the marsh that seems to make up much of the eastern side of the arena, where the Careers have never explored before. Now, as we carefully navigate our way through the fog through muddy, slippery ground and near-freezing conditions, this no longer seems like such a good idea.
"Do you think we should head back the way we came?" asks Sam.
He's such a hypocrite.
"You'd better do as I say here," he had told me a few moments ago. "I know what to do all right."
What a liar.
"I thought you knew what you were doing!" I snap at him frustratedly.
"Well..." he blunders, unable to formulate an excuse.
"Reynolds, if I had a dollar for every time you bent the truth, I'd be a millionaire," I say mockingly, leaving my ally flustered.
"Like I bend the truth!" scoffs my ally, but he's just digging himself into a deeper hole.
"I could easily reduce myself to your level," I say in a more serious tone. "It's not hard to play dumb."
That annoyed him.
For almost a minute, we stand five yards apart in the marsh, staring each other down. For the first few seconds, I'm expecting the punch; I can see his balled fists by his side, ready to strike. But the attack never comes.
"At least you know what I'm capable of," he says, trying to threaten me.
"Isn't that a good thing?" I laugh in response. "That way, I know what you can do, making you predictable. And I know that you're not hiding anything, either; you've incredibly low standards for yourself from these first few days, that I know you aren't saving anything. If you were saving anything, you would have revealed it by now. Unless you're incredibly stupid, which is something that I have no doubt that you are."
Sam is silent again.
"How do you know I'm not hding something?" I ask him.
"I don't," he says meekly. I think something might actually be sinking in to his brain. For once.
"You're a hopeless Career, Reynolds," I say honestly. "You're lucky to have lasted this long."
"Do you have any evidence to prove that?" I look around myself in an overly exaggerated manner. "No, I think not," I say, showing Sam a look of mock dismay. "I have no belief in you surviving this arena without me."
"You're wrong," is all Sam can say again.
"Go on, then," I say confidently. "Prove me wrong."
"Fine, I will!" retorts Sam, who slings his backpack over his shoulder and stalks off into the marsh.
I stand still, my arms crossed, watching as Sam Reynolds attempts to leave the marsh without my assistance. He barely gets fifty yards before I watch his footing give way and he topples over into the cold waters. I can faintly hear muffled cries for help, but I pretend not to hear him and turn from the scene, making my own careful escape from the marsh.
So, that confrontation went well, I think to myself sarcastically. Then again, although I lost my final ally, I'm one tribute closer to home.
And that can only be a good thing.
With Sam Reynolds's death the pool of victors dwindled to six, and it was quickly cut to four, as it would stay until the end of the second week, when the boy from District 5 shared Sam's fate.
Meanwhile, Timothy (who had been lucky to secure a place in the Career Alliance earlier in the Games) killed the boy from District 3 on the sixteenth day, taking the total number of tributes down to just two.
The final two tributes were both close to each other in the woods that made up the western half of the arena, so the Gamemakers didn't need to intervene to set up the final confrontation between Timothy and the boy from District 8, which Timothy won comfortably, using his axes and a sword taken from the boy from Three to overpower his adversary, crowning him the victor of the 21st Annual Hunger Games.
A/N: If you've enjoyed this, please review! Constructive criticism is welcomed.
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