Hey, everyone! I'm back from camp now, so I can finally finish this story! Yep, I said finish. This is the last chapter, everyone! I'm so excited that I made it this far. Also, thanks to mangesboy01 and daydreamer626 for reviewing. And thanks to everyone who has reviewed, favorited, or followed, and thanks again to Ruby Salamander for putting this in her community, The OCs of Panem. All of this really means a lot to me. Look for the sequel to this soon! I've got a few ideas for the title, but I don't know which to use. If you've got any suggestions, feel free to PM me.
Also, the chapter title comes from three things: the fact that I've written so much of this story, another interview with Caesar Flickerman, and the way that my recent chapters remind me of the song Deja Vu by Eminem. :)
They're applauding and cheering for my prep team first. Then they introduce Miranda, who is probably half delirious with excitement of having another victor from District Four. September's appearances is met by a huge round of cheering and clapping, since he's done wonderfully. I keep remembering what he says about being neutral to the rebellion, but wanting the best for his tributes and victors. Ha. That's fucking ironic, since I've ended up the way I am now. Then Finnick comes up to the stage, and there's a lot of applause and whistling, especially from the Capitol women. And then I feel the metal plate lifting me up to the stage. Out in the open with my hidden panic and sweaty palms. And I'm like a target that everyone waits to throw their shit at.
I force a smile onto my face, trying not to make it look too fake even though it is. After what seems like at least five minutes of somewhat strained applause, I sit down in the victor's chair, an ornately carved seat where I'm supposed to watch my Games from. Shit. I feel like I'm going to puke now. I mean, the show's only three hours long, and the first half an hour or so is always the pre-arena material, but my Games were actually short. Only around a week long. So they'll have to show a lot. Caesar's getting the audience excited, but I can see the nervous glances that they give me out of the corners of their eyes.
But... oh, fuck, I feel like falling out of this damn chair and puking my guts out on the ground.
The lights dim, and the seal of the Capitol appears on the screen. I wipe my hands on my dress, clenching them into fists, my head pounding. Whoever put this shit together must be a sick Capitol pervert, since there's a cheery, upbeat song playing as background music for the reapings, chariot rides, training scores, and interviews. Oh, shit, I looked like a slut on the chariot, but oh fucking well, that's the past. And in the interviews, I sound so fucking badass that I'm silently cheering my video self on.
Then comes the arena. The bloodbath coverage is extremely detailed, especially the District Three girl and her pearls, and Silver getting blown sky-high by my land mine. After I almost get choked to death by Victory, they zoom in to the cut on my face, then my eyes as I go down into the caves. It shows some quick shots of the tributes who survived the bloodbath, especially the Career pack. At the sight of them onscreen, I feel my stomach lurch. Then comes the scariest part so far, at least it is to me. The little girl from District Six. The... the morphling addict. Fuck, is that what I'll become? Better? Worse? Then the camera zooms in on the mutt tearing her up as she screams for her mommy. And me yelling at her, and then I'm pinned to the ground by the dog mutt. Then there's a gory shot of my neck getting bitten. Then the mutts coming, and me slitting the girl's throat. After that, there's a disgusting shot of me fainting into the water.
It shows me waking up after the screen fades for a few seconds. Then I start choking, and then I get the parachute with some medicine. It shows me hacking up blood for a few seconds, which almost brings the little that I ate back up again. Then there I am, crawling through tunnels, and there's the Careers. It shows the little exchange between us before the rape, and then... shit. The people who put this together are twisted. It shows most of the repeating rape, blurring out parts of our bodies that could use the blurring. It skips most of the night, since it's basically more rape. Then they cut me up to pieces. I'm lying in a pool of blood. Then it shows me bargaining with Victor, and sewing myself up again. I look like a freak, but I don't care.
It's the fucking past now, isn't it?
Then I'm killing Vibrance, yelling, and running like the devil himself is chasing me. Then it skips a while, showing a few shots of the other tributes and the extremely pissed-off Career pack. It almost makes me smile to see Sage bitching to the other two Careers in front of all of Panem. Then, of course, Tess finds me. I get a knot in the pit of my stomach. Then there's us running, and me yelling my head off at her to keep going, and all that shit that I did. I bite my lower lip, knowing what's coming next. And it shows Alder stabbing Tess to death, and me finding her body. And then there's Alder again, kissing me. And then I stab him in the back, and I start to cry.
I know what's coming next, but I'm not quite prepared for the extremes of it. And here I am, finishing off the whole bottle of pills with shaking hands and wide eyes. There I am, staggering around and laughing at things that aren't there. And I kill Brooklyn, the girl from District Five. It's almost a little comical, me passing out, splashing down in the water hard. But it's not funny at all when I'm having a fit and screaming my face off. And then, of course, I get high again, and then Lacey comes and kills my district partner, so I kill her.
Now we're at the final showdown, and it's pretty intense. I notice that they've been bleeping out all the swearing through the whole Games. Half the shit I say is censored by now. I stab through Victor's heart, and then there's the part with Sage. Everything is hushed. Then at my anti-Capitol tirade, they just bleep out the whole thing, just showing me screaming silently at Sage and the Capitol. Especially the Capitol. Even though I'm nervous, I've got this warm feeling in my heart, like you'd feel if you were proud of someone close to you. And then I kill Sage, and the feeling fades, and so does the screen.
President Snow himself takes the stage, with some little bitch behind him carrying my victor's crown on a cushion. My heart speeds up as President Snow places it on my head. And I can see his eyes, hating and wanting revenge. But that's just some rebellious shit that I said while I was high... and I love it! I think. Well, I mean, I love getting high and what I said.
And after that, the night is a blur of Capitol people and autographs and handshakes and pictures and me just wanting to lay down and die.
The next day, I wake up feeling like shit itself. My head's pounding, and I need drugs so fucking bad. So I climb out of bed, put on some clothes, and raid the medicine cabinet in my bathroom for pills. I honestly don't care much about what I'm putting into my body, as long as it gets me high, but I especially want those same pills from the arena. After digging through the whole thing, I find them. This time, the bottle is labeled: morphling pills. Take one a day for pain. Side affects include nausea and sleeplessness. Overdose is almost always fatal if you take more than sixty pills within ten minutes. I almost laugh. Morphling. I've heard of liquid morphling, but only merchants can afford it. I guess the pills are cheaper. And this pill bottle is huge. It probably holds hundreds. I sit on the counter by the sink, my legs bare and dangling over, and I dump a handful of pills into my hand, clapping the hand to my mouth and swallowing hard. The pills scrape my throat, and I drink some water straight from the tap.
Then I hear my prep team opening the door, and I jump down from the counter, shoving the pill bottle back into the cabinet. The team walks in, and their eyes all flit to the open medicine cabinet, with pill bottles strewn all over the counter. But they don't say anything. That's good, because I'm getting this wonderful rush, and I love the way that the world spins. They're all over me, doing my makeup and brushing my hair to silky perfection, dragging me into the shower again. A few hours later, I'm full-out high. I just try to keep my mouth shut and to ignore every fucked-up thing that I see.
Finally, September comes in, dressing me in a beautiful gray-blue dress that almost looks like rain and brings out my eyes. From one look at me, he can see that something's wrong. By looking at the open cabinet and the pill bottles, he easily puts two and two together. "You got high, didn't you?" he asks, but it's not really a question. I nod after a second, my vision blurry. He sighs. "Just try to act normal in the interview, okay?" I nod again dully.
The interview's going to be in the small sitting room just down the hall, with no live audience this time. There's a few cameras and Caesar Flickerman, but otherwise I'm alone. He shakes my hand. "How are you doing, Spark?" he asks kindly with a smile. I barely whisper the word fine. "Oh, don't be nervous, this is going to be fun," Caesar assures me.
But all I can think of is Vibrance saying something in her interview, how the arena was going to be so fun. And I feel sick.
I sit down, and as soon as I'm ready, I'm broadcast to all of Panem. Caesar greets me with a smile, then asks me the first question. "So, Spark, how do you feel about winning the Hunger Games?" he asks. "Although I'm sure that you wanted to win."
I swallow hard. "I expected to win in the first place as soon as I was reaped," I say, managing a smile that hopefully doesn't look too false.
Caesar laughs, and from then on, it's not so bad. I try not to sound weak, and I've got my usual badass flare, but it's not exactly rocket science to tell that I'm high. My eyes keep flicking around the room, and my hands are clenched into tight fists, my perfectly painted fingernails digging into my sweaty palms. I still sound tough, I guess, because I made it through. But there's something missing, and even I can tell that. Maybe it's because it's too hard to ignore the world spinning and blurring into rainbows of colors and sparkling like a thousand jewels.
But at the end of the interviews, my head's getting heavy. I start getting surly and hostile, snarling at Caesar Flickerman to the point where he looks worried. I'm about to stand up and hit him or something. I'm so fucking tired of all of this shit that they pull me through, all these stupid pointless questions. I feel like I'm either going to kill someone or I'm going to break down crying and black out.
Caesar notices and tries to wrap it up a minute or so early. "Well, I think that's all," he says with a winning smile at the cameras. "Thanks for coming, Spark." Suddenly, I'm filled with fury. I didn't have a choice. I had to come. He knows that. And I'm high. I'm fucking high on morphling pills, and I love it. And I just want to go home and die.
I stand up all of a sudden, swaying a little. "It's not like I had a fucking choice!" I yell, and then the world turns blurry. It's starting to fade away, and I think I'm going to fall. Dizzy. So... fucking... dizzy.
I wake up in my room, lying on the bed. It feels like only minutes have passed, and I'm alone. I assume that I've got to go to the train. I don't want to get up, but I stagger to the bathroom and change into more comfortable clothes, shoving handfuls of morphling pills into my pockets and stuffing pill bottles in my boots. As soon as I open the door, I'm taken down the elevator by Finnick, and he doesn't say a word to me. We go into a car with tinted windows and drive to the train station, where the train is waiting to take me back to District Four.
Home. I've got mixed feelings about home. I just want to see the ocean again, and my grandmother, and Jake Paylor. But as soon as those things are done, I'm going to go up to my bedroom, shut the door, and get myself so high by overdosing on pills that I just die. No one would really give a shit. I mean, the Capitol couldn't touch me if I killed myself. And the rebellion would spark up anyway. A martyr would be perfect fuel for the flames, to prove what the Capitol is doing to us here in the districts. I stare out the window as the train begins to move, thinking to myself. I should. I really should.
The hours pass. I stay in my room, not eating much, continually taking more morphling pills, getting so high that I feel like my whole body's going to explode. And I forget who I am. Am I the tough rebel's daughter from District Four? Am I the killing machine? Am I the crying, torn-up tribute who got violently raped in the arena? Am I the girl who passed out drunk on the train? Am I the crazy drug addict rebel? I'm going to just go with that last one.
I never see anyone and barely sleep, but then Finnick's opening the door, telling me that I've got a few minutes before the train pulls into District Four. I barely can nod, I'm so drugged. My head's spinning, and I manage to get to my feet. Just as the train stops, I watch out the window as District Four appears. The sea, the sand, the salt. I bite my lip. Why not just die now? I'm sick of life. I can't stand it anymore. I don't feel like much matters anymore except the fall of the Capitol.
Because I'm tired of pretending to give a fuck, and because the Capitol doesn't mean shit to me.
And as the doors to the train slide open and everyone outside cheers, I dump the rest of my morphling pills into my hand, put it to my mouth, and swallow, waiting for the haze to overtake me and for the people of my district to find me dead of a drug overdose. Because the rebellion needs someone to fight for, and the best ones are always the martyrs. And because I'm fucking sick of living through this shit that the Capitol put me through.
Well, goodbye, everyone! I'll have the sequel up soon. Thank you so much for reading this story!