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It's clear now, what they mean when they say it. Once you go into the Games, a part of you never really comes out. That part is running, running, running from unseen predators now, even as he tries to sleep. He tosses and turns, trying to escape. But he knows that even as he closes his eyes, he will still be running.
He is supposed to be safe. After he got out, he was supposed to be safe, right? Wrong. He is in more danger than ever. He is all too aware of this now, as he curls up in his bed, alone in the dark. Heart pounding, he reaches for the glass of water he always keeps by his bed. It has become a habit for him, in the past two weeks since he has gotten out of those horrible Games, to always keep water nearby. The thirst will come at unforeseen times, scratching and clawing at his throat, threatening to choke him if he does not alleviate it immediately. It reminds him all too much of the nights he spent in the arena, hungry and thirsty, when there was nothing to drink but the meager drops of rainwater.
He is not sure when exactly he falls asleep but he knows when he is actually asleep when he sees her face again, blurred as a distant memory. "You have to win…" she whispers over and over, her faint voice as an echo. But then he is not looking into the face of Maysilee but into the face of Ribbon, the District 1 girl whom he had indirectly killed with the force field. Her face is contorted into a revolting snarl even in death, and her green eyes shine with a strange, manic light. He can hear the growls of the muttattions and the screams of the jabberjays now, drilling relentlessly into his skull, and can feel again that burning thirst…
And he sits bolt upright, wide awake.
Once you kill someone, they never really leave you alone.
And once you leave the Games, a part of you always stays behind.
If they are connected in any way, he has just found out how.
Who should be next? I have a list of my own, but I want to know my readers' opinions. Updates will be slow, seeing as I have not yet written any except this one.
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