So what up all you lovely people, it's me, My Words Live, welcoming you to a brand new story which I hope all of you will love and enjoy. For those of you who have been reading this series, the Final Rebellion will be coming out right after this story. And I have to say, both of the last stories, (Final Rebellion parts 1 and 2) are going to be AMAZING. So read and review, let me know what you think, and remember to check out my Co-Author, My Words Speak. Thank you all so much, 안녕히 가세요!
"I know I've said it many times, but I am honored to be the head Gamemaker."
"I think you've earned it. You were far more useful than Mikah ever was."
Shark Valler grimaced. "She did an abysmal job two years ago."
"Yes. Now the reason I called you here. You received my memo?"
"This is a list of known rebel districts." Snow handed over a thin sheet of paper.
Shark scanned the list quickly. "Umm Sir... these are ALL the districts."
"Exactly," Snow grumbled. "Now the reason I called you here is this: which District should I send her to?"
"1 or 2?"
"No, too noticeable."
"3, 5, 7, 8, 9, or 10?"
"That Abernathy would figure out something was going on."
Snow contemplated that for a minute. Then he said, "I knew I made a good choice in promoting you."
Pyros Djokovic was a proud member of the Djokovic clan, one of the most ancient and well respected families in Panem next to the Snows, of course. He was the best of the best, and he never wasted an opportunity to remind anyone he could of that.
The morning of the reaping he woke up and and stretched as he looked out the window. He saw a small boy, he looked about twelve years old, in the Djokovics' back yard. He jerked open the large screen door and stepped out onto the patio still in his expensive white robe and slippers and yelled at the boy, "WHAT IN THE NAME OF THE DJOKOVICS DO YOU THINK YOUR DOING!"
The boy looked up in terror. He was scrawny and underfed.
"You filthy mongrel!" Pyros sputtered. "You are not worthy enough to dig through the trash bins of the Djokovics!"
His parents had held a massive party the night before to celebrate the only son of the Djokovic clan going to the Hunger Games, and the boy had been about to eat the remains of someone's cake.
"Go begone with you, you... you dirty muttation! And do not let your filth defile the house of the Djokovics as long as your sorry hide might live!" HE went inside, feeling as if he had done his duty to keep the house of the Djokovics free of the filth and dirt that defiled most of the rest of district 1
Cyan Rubyon was now 15 years old. Three years prior, her older sister Sapphire had been killed in the very Games that Cyan was now training for. Three years ago when she had watched her sister die she had been an ignorant, puny weakling. Now she was a force to be reckoned with. With her high pitched grunt that was her signature fighting niche, she hurled a spear straight into the heart of a dummy.
Her sister had made a terrible mistake. Jealousy. Some other girl had been against the Careers and the leader of the Careers, who had ended up being the Victor, had fallen for her instead. So Cyan had spent the long years since the 76th games training to be a ruthless fighter, and while she was doing that she had also, slowly but steadily, began to put up walls around her heart. She was an impenetrable fortress. No one could reach her, no one could touch her. That way she could not meet her sister's downfall.
(Little did she know what she thought was her strength would be her undoing)
No one had ever found the escort Jettson, so the substitute escort, Rosalinda, had become the permanent escort for district 1. Rosalinda did the usual introductions while Cyan stood there like a sentinal that had been called to guard there. She was feeling no emotion even though she was about to make a life changing decision, because of the unbreakable barriers that now stood around her heart.
Everyone in the crowd whirled around to see where the hard, flinty voice had come from and were surprised to see a fifteen year old girl as the origin of the sound.
"Alright then, what's your name?"
Rosalinda of course, had not escorted Sapphire and did not remember her, but the rest of the district did.
"Now moving on to the boys!"
Pyros nodded and breathed in deeply, ready to bellow the fateful words of I Volunteer,
and Rosalinda read, "Pyros Djokivic."
"I volunteer!" Yelled another boy. Pyros almost screamed in anger when he saw it was Michael Lucian, the boy he had been rivals with since their first basketball game against each other in third grade.
"You filthy DOG!" Pyros barked in outrage. How dare that Lucian kid steal his place!
"It's my year!" Michael retorted, equally angry.
"I VOLUNTEER MYSELF FOR MYSELF!" Pyros proclaimed at the top of his lungs. He was going to win the Hunger Games and there was nothing anyone could do to stop him!
Patten Alrod was only fifteen, but he was certain he could take any adult.
After the whole scheme with Andi flopped, Mr Alrod had gone to a devastated Patten and convinced him it was for the best that he become a Career to go win the Hunger Games and avenge his sister's death.
The then twelve-year-old Patten had given into his father's wishes and every day, every moment, trained long and hard for the day when he would finally get revenge on the people who had killed his sister.
As he lifted his usual morning weights, he thought about three years ago. He had been such an idiot, thinking his sister could actually win. She had been weak! Love had made her a weak tribute with no backbone!
Patten Alrod was only fifteen, but he had been completely and, some thought, beyond repair, brainwashed.
Alexandria Felicia Beatrix Westhrop was a girl with an unnecessarily long name, and a tendency to threaten you with the large, serrated knife she always had strapped to her belt loop.
Some days she was an invincible warrior. But some days she was just like any other teenage girl: full of emotions and confused about where she fit in with the rest of District 2.
Those were the days when you didn't want to cross her.
The reaping day was one of those days. She headed down to her gym and ran laps while her mind was a confused mess.
There's only one way to find out who I am, she thought. It's the way I always believed. The Hunger Games. The Hunger Games. If I go to the Hunger Games I will finally find what I have been looking for... Her identity. She had been searching for so long, and the day when she would volunteer was finally at hand...
I hope it's worth it. She shook her head to clear the thought. It was the Hunger Games! Of course it would be worth it!
Java, the long time escort of District 2, arrived at the town square right on time as usual. She made the usual introductions, and then went over to the girls' reaping ball.
"I...I..." No! Now was the time to be strong! "I VOLUNTEER!"
"And we have a volunteer! What is your name?"
"Alexandria Westhrop." Her father had told her to not use her full name, because it would make her seem like an "airhead."
"Lovely, now you can stand right up here..."
Alexandria felt like the skyline of District 2 was getting hazy and distant, but maybe it was just the importance of what she had just done. She was finally on her way to the Games.
"Now, our boy tribute for this year is-"
A fifteen year old boy stepped out of the crowd. Achilles, who was onstage in an overstuffed chair, leaned forward, straining to see the boy.
"...Your name?" Java finished the question she had started while Achilles was preoccupied.
A strangled cry came from Achilles. NO! NOOO! Not her brother! He... he volunteered! He hadn't felt the pain that bad since he won his Games. Afterwards it had been a dull ache.
The week before Seth Walton had been in the woods with some of the guys and they had been making fun of his nonexistent athletic ability.
Lucas Martin had kept elbowing him painfully in the ribs and saying, "Ohh did that hurt? Well Sorry Walton, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!"
Then the others laughed in their annoying way. Seth had rubbed his aching stomach and then decided it was about time to go, it was a bad idea doing that. The guys had been mean to him ever since their "leader's" death. It had been better before he died. He had been the only one who had ever accepted Seth for who he was and not if he did their homework for him.
After their leader's death, that had been the policy: you do our homework and we don't beat you to a pulp.
"Well I've got to go," Seth had said, but Lucas grabbed his shoulder and didn't let him go.
"I know, Lucas. I'll do your homework," he sighed.
"No Walton. I think instead of homework, tonight we want you to do something else."
"I agreed to do your homework, that's it," Seth said irritably, trying to jerk away from Lucas's grasp, but he held firm. Lucas gave him a look that said, If you don't do this all bets are off and you'll be lucky to be alive tomorrow.
Seth, whose hands had gone clammy, said shakily, "What?"
"Climb that tree." Lucas pointed up at the tallest oak tree in the woods.
Seth slowly walked at the tree, wiping his sweaty hands on his pants. He grasped a low hanging branch and lifted himself up onto it.
Then the first rock came.
It whistled by his left ear, missing, but barely. Then more came, a whole barrage of pebbles and other smaller rocks. They battered him, and his wire-rimmed glasses fell to the forest floor. Seth sat helpless on the first branch, but he knew what he had to do. Get higher. He reached up for a higher branch. He almost had it when...
He felt like he had been punched in the stomach by King Kong. He had landed hard on the forest floor, and Lucas laughed and high fived the other guys. Then they left, and Lucas took care to tread on Seth's fingers with his bulky hunting boots.
Allie Sorren's twelfth birthday had finally arrived. She woke up with a feeling of joy in the pit of her stomach as she came down to breakfast, where her mom had made caramel rolls piled high on a blue plate, and a brightly colored box was on the table.
She spent no time on breakfast, eating all her caramel rolls in less than five minutes, then she opened the box. It was not a big box, but her face lit up in joy when she saw what was in it.
It was one of those music chips that was tiny enough to be concealed in a flake of glitter, but can hold hours of songs.
"This is so cool!" She exclaimed. Music had been a part of Allie's life since she was four years old and decided she had wanted to be a professional singer. At age six, she had started piano, at nine, guitar, at eleven, trumpet and flute, and she was going to the music shop later that day to get her first French Horn.
Her mom said, "We gave you that one, to do with whatever you like."
"Thanks mom, I LOVE it!"
Her mom swallowed uncomfortably and said, "Allie, you do know today is going to be your first reaping?"
The feeling of joy she had woken up with froze over and became a pretzel of worry. She had forgotten all about the reaping.
"You can do it," her mom reassured her. "You're name is only in there once."
The words did nothing to ease the tension she felt for the first time she might be chosen to die.
Loam Agginson, the infamous foul tempered escort, was again in District 3 for the annual reaping.
He did not wait for the clock to strike twelve, which was the time the reaping started in District 3, but began twenty minutes early to get it all over with.
"Allie Sorren," he said.
The knot in her stomach had almost loosened, but then it clenched tighter than ever at the mention of her name. She had to bite her tongue to keep from screaming, My name was only in there once!
"Get up here already, kid!" he growled, and she took small, quick steps forward.
He didn't wait for her to make it all the way up before reading the boy's name.
"I volunteer as tribute! I'm Seth Walton!" came a voice from somewhere around Lucas.
"Alright then get up here volunteer," he said, then muttered, "idiot," under his breath.
Seth had no idea what had just happened, and he tried to un-volunteer himself, but he felt like his tongue was glued to the roof of his mouth as he came onstage.
When he saw Lucas and his henchmen standing there looking even more smug than usual, the pieces began to fall in place. Lucas getting reaped, him "volunteering."
It was the final blow to top all that they had ever done to him.
"You will win."
That's what he had told her. Then another man came into the room. She recognized him from TV and her grandfather's parties.
"The variables will be stacked against the others," he explained. "So literally, the odds are in YOUR favor."
She nodded. She was a machine. A machine trained to kill relentlessly. She was smart, good looking, and knew how to handle a diamond sword better than anyone in Panem.
Then they had loaded her onto a train. The train ride had been long and dull. When it was finally over she stepped out and breathed in the damp air. Overhead the sky was a dull gloomy gray and she could see several great ships in the distance.
Lily Snow had arrived in District 4.
The stench of the week old walleye was overwhelming to Drake Anthony as he walked through the fish market. The fish vendors had been having a down week, and the fish that should have been sold days ago were rotting in the side alleys.
Drake was seventeen years old and one of the youngest fishermen to make a living on their trade. He only did it because he had to , however. Every time he brought in the nets there was a pang of guilt at the corpses of the fish he had killed. Cleaning and gutting was the worst. His wickedly sharp silver fishing knife cut into the fish like a hot knife through butter.
Sometimes he still had to clench his stomach at the all the gore, even after two years.
But it was all worth it when he came home to his family of five sisters and a crippled father with dinner.
His sisters were ages five, seven, eight, eleven, and twelve. Their parents had been in an accident the year Drake had started fishing. Drake and his sisters had been in school at the time, and a family friend, Nathan Long, had come to get them.
It was March and a dull gloomy day that was typical in District 4, and Drake had been staring out the window of his math class, willing the clock to speed up. Seventh hour was always the longest, he thought dully, when Nathan Long had come into the room with all five of Drake's sisters in tow.
He had urgently said something to the teacher, and Drake had already stood up, wondering what had happened. Nathan motioned for him to come over, and he did, wondering what could have caused Nathan to come in the middle of his 7th hour to come get him.
"Your mother is dead and your father gravely injured," Nathan said in an undertone. The words hit him like a brick wall. Nathan continued, "Your mother and father were fishing in the Jarvasan Bay when a larger ship came almost out of nowhere. It just splintered the boat in two, and your mother was killed on impact. They don't want you, or anyone else, to see the body, it's a bloody mess. Your father is in critical condition down at the central hospital. He was airlifted there five minutes after the impact."
The next few hours of riding in Nathan's car down to the central hospital in the dead center of the district were a hazy blur to Drake afterwards. It had started to rain sometime during the drive, and Drake had just watched the raindrops slide down the window, blurring the lights outside.
They had not been able to see Drake's father that day, or the day after. On the third day was Mrs Anthony's funeral (with no body). Sometime around there he had lost all sense of emotion and was just an empty shell walking around.
Eventually, he had started to become aware of feelings and emotions, and Nathan had talked to him about becoming a fisherman to support his sisters and father, who had lost both legs and an arm in the accident.
Drake had fallen into the routine of fishing with Nathan every day, and the familiar twist in his stomach at the killings of the fish that reminded him so much of his own mother's death, in some strange way.
District 4 had a new escort that year, since Novijak the previous one had been beheaded last year for picking two boys.
The new escort's name was Nylonica Quirrinian. She was a bright and bubbly talkative person who completely fit all the escort stereotypes.
Nylonica knew the drill and she picked a girl's name. "Lianna Anthony!"
Drake almost lunged at the stage in prostest, First his parents and now his sister too?!
"I volunteer." came a dangerous cold voice. "My name is Lily Rain."
She could not, of course, tell anyone she was actually President Snow's granddaughter as that would ruin the whole facade. She felt no fear at volunteering as she knew she would win. The odds were in her favor, Shark Valler had told her.
"Well come on up here then Lily," said Nylonica cheerfully and moved on to the boys.
Drake had just began to relax when every muscle tensed again. NO! He felt like screaming. Who was going to provide for his family? Sure, Nathan would try and help, but he had his own family to take care of, and there was only so much one guy could do.
Drake looked over at the girl, Lily Rain. She looked about eighteen and she had blonde hair so light it almost looked white, and bright but deadly blue eyes.
As they had to shake hands Drake shuddered at the look she gave him. It was a look of loathing and spite, and it showed that she would have absolutely no problem killing him in the Hunger Games.
That was the problem, Drake would have problems with killing in the Hunger Games.