Run, Part One
See, here's the bloody, bloody truth;
You will hurt and you will lose;
I've got scars you won't believe;
Wear them proudly on my sleeve.
My father greets each and every one of them as they enter the room. I recognise some of their faces, those who are famous amongst the Capitol and have appeared on the television alongside our interviewer, those my parents invited round for dinners to discuss certain things that I was never allowed to hear; but there are some who I've never seen before.
Most of them have that typical Capitolite appearance; tattoos, piercings, dyes, jewels embedded in skin. Some like my father and myself are as normal as a District citizen. Although not as dirty.
He smiles at them all and waves a hand signifying they can all be seated. I can't deny how nervous I am, my stomach flips with each second that goes by. This is my first ever meeting with the Gamemakers and since my father's Head Gamemaker and he's already pushed upon my shoulders the idea that I should follow in his footsteps, I am to attend this one. To learn the tricks of the trade as he said over breakfast this morning.
I couldn't be more scared.
Some of them like the woman next to me look at me with friendly eyes and I try to return their kindness but I can tell in the eyes of some of the senior and much more famous of the group that they don't like the fact a boy is with them. I'm seventeen, I'm not exactly a boy but apart from me the youngest is around fourty so I'm guessing that in a sense, yes, I am a boy.
My father straightens his back at the head of the table, rolling up the sleeves of his heavy Head Gamemaker's robes and clears his throat. This year is added pressure on all of them, it's the Second Quarter Quell and what with the success of the first one they've got to make it perfect. Or is it we have to? I'm not entirely sure whether I can be counted amongst them yet. I've helped father at home but never here in the actual control room where they do everything together. It's exciting but still I feel as if I'm about to be sick on the very table.
"I'll cut to the chase; President Snow needs this to be the best Games ever. We know the twist and we have the Arena in place but I need each and every one of you on your best come the Games. If there's any sign of a tribute doing anything that could damage the reputation of the Capitol and the Games they have to be dealt with swiftly. We can't have a repeat of last year."
I bite my tongue to keep the laugh from coming out.
It was gruesome but I can't help but love it when the Districts show a bit of fight within them. Like they're sticking up their finger at the Capitol. I don't want a rebellion, I just don't like the President in the slightest and when he's taken down a peg or two I feel like personally congratulating whoever does it. Although I can't really for this particular event.
Last year there had been some understanding between the tributes. Come the launch, eleven... eleven teenagers who could have fought for their own survival jumped and exploded on impact at the mines. They killed themselves to defy the Capitol and still we're seeing the consequences of their act today. But the Districts are still too weak and unorganised to do anything too big. I shouldn't worry.
"You've all been allocated your jobs for the Games and I hope everything goes well. For your sake as well as my own. The reapings are tomorrow and with double the amount of tributes it's going to be very busy all over the Capitol. This twist should hopefully quell any uprisings that might be in the works."
They say that the cards were written before the first Hunger Games, but I know that the twist was decided upon given the circumstances with last year's Games. It's just too perfect and too terrifying. It puts down any rebellion in the Districts because this Games will be more bloody and that much more tragic. Fourty eight tributes instead of the usual twenty four. I'm a fan of the Hunger Games but that's still a lot of tributes killing each other.
"Some of you may be wondering why my son is here for such a short meeting but it's about time he realized what we do here and how dangerous it can be. He's going to be a Gamemaker, aren't you Pyat?"
I feel warmth rising to my cheeks and I know I'm blushing. Father can be formal when he needs to be and only seconds ago he was both intimidating and cold. Now he's just a dad who's proud of his son. I'm still not sure if this is even what I want but I've been raised by a Gamemaker who was promoted three years ago. I'm amazed he kept his head because of last year but President Snow was particularly kind to him for whatever reason.
He must be terrified though this year, one more slip up and he'll die. This is why I hate President Snow; he doesn't value the lives of even those who help him control Panem. The Hunger Games require my father and he'd gladly kill him. I don't want to get into this profession but I can't look at my father and see the joy in his eyes and turn him down.
So I nod and try to smile at him. It's not a big smile at all, more like a half smile but it makes my father nod and grin even more. Most of the others warm up to me after the meeting. Even those who seemed to raise their noses at me in disgust at the beginning.
They don't like the fact that of course being the Head Gamemaker's son immediately gives me easy access to this job. They all must have worked so hard to become one and I can become one when I turn eighteen without having to go through what they must have done.
I don't blame them, but still it's nice to know they don't mind talking to me.
After a short feast where five Gamemakers end up leaving drunk and another pair kissing on the way out through the doors, father leads me out the building. It takes a while to reach the outdoors; the control room is hidden underground to protect it they say. To keep it out of sight from other people is what I say and what is most likely true.
"Pyat, you do want this right? To be a Gamemaker." He finally says, breaking the silence as we begin the short walk to our house. I feel my throat tighten at his words and since it's dark I'm glad he can't see the expression on my face.
No, no I don't want this. The Gamemakers butcher innocent children and although I can't help but enjoy the Games themselves I always feel guilty for watching them and knowing my father helped kill them.
But, like always, I cannot tell him this.
"Of course father, next year I'll be joining you and I can't wait."
Even in the dark I can see his smile and he ruffles my hair causing us both to laugh.
"Let's just get through this Quell first, a lot rides on this and I just hope everything goes to plan."
"It will, you're a great Gamemaker. Last year was just... unfortunate."
We walk in silence all the way home and as I lie in bed I can't get myself to fall asleep. I may not want to be a Gamemaker but father's life literally is on the line. Sure, fourty seven kids are going to be dead by the end but my father matters to me more than anything. If he needs a good Games he'll get a good Games.
I don't know a whole deal about a lot of things but watching past Hunger Games, well, you pick up a thing or two. I'll help him and we'll have the best Hunger Games ever seen. If I'm going to be a Gamemaker I may as well think like one, no matter how hard it is. No matter how many children will die.
Run by Pink
Author's Note: Hey guys. Look... I'm back! You're all probably wondering 'hey Jake didn't you quit like a week ago.' Well yes, yes I did and I thought that's what I wanted.
But starting another fandom, well I realize just how much a big part of my life was writing for the Hunger Games and I regretted the choice almost immediately. Sure, coming back I should maybe continue with a discontinued SYOT but I thought I'd have a fresh start with a brand new SYOT.
Yes this is the Second Quarter Quell with four tributes from each District but I'm doing this as if nothing that happened in canon happened. So no Haymitch, no Maysilee, no beautiful poisonous arena. Nothing that happened in the Quell that was mentioned in the book.
I will have the form and the tribute list up on my profile. Sure fourty eight tributes is a lot and sure I know I can't be trusted to get SYOT's finished but I mean it... even if I update every 8 years I will get it done. (Okay slight exaggeration but you know what I mean xD)
I doubt I will get fourty eight authors showing an interest but for now only one tribute per author and if it seems I won't get fourty eight tributes from different authors, which I'm sure will be the case, I will ask you if you would like to submit another one!
Oh and I know you may have submitted tributes to me that were never used but don't ask me to just use an old one cause I won't ;D
You may reserve a tribute but I am not going to wait two weeks for the tribute. I will give you until next Wednesday, then I will open the spot again.
Anyway, I understand if you're concerned I may quit. I don't blame you but I didn't come back to Hunger Games just to quit another SYOT.
I'm here to stay from now on, well not for my entire life but you know what I mean :P
Welcome to, Fight or Flight!