"Believe me, Cassio. I never wanted to be this tragic."
Anna Dressed in Blood - Kendare Blake
She's thirteen. And she has some of the worst wounds for a victor in Hunger Games victory. She's not even conscious. I look at her immobile body, a respirator strapped to her. I lean forward in the chair, my hands clasped, I'm leaning on them.
She's had two surgeries; one for her head and one for her stomach. The one for her stomach happened whilst she was on her way to the capitol, the one for her head happened in between.
Her stomach was ripped open, her vital organs damaged, her skull crushed in, her hands partially destroyed. The list continues.
"Woosley?" Andy's main doctor inquires. I look at her, and she beckons me to her private room, just for tributes and mentors. I look at her, then back at Andy's sleeping form. She hasn't been fixed yet, so she's still covered in bruises, and scrapes, and a whole fucking list of things that shouldn't have happened to her.
For once she actually looks her age. A young, tab girl with a dusting of freckles over her broken nose, with dark circles under her closed eyes, and deep cuts covering the right side of her face. When she's awake she looks much older than 13, time weighs her down, and for the umpteenth time I wonder what had already happened to her that made her that way.
"She'll be all right." I look at the doctor. Her name is Angela, she's a small and slight woman, with kind, brown eyes. Her skin is a tarnished gold colour, but other than that she looks quite professional. No crazy Capitol clothes, as it's a hospital for the victor, no make-up. She looks like a normal person, except the long artificial eye-lashes attached to her eye lids. But they're easy to ignore. I wonder how she managed to be so normal in such a distorted world of vibrant colours and high-pitched noises.
I nod, and she leads the way to a darkened room. On the walls are x-rays and sketches, a picture or two.
"I assume you know why I've brought you here?"
I look at her, mutely.
She smiles once more. I think I like her. "Whenever a victor's injuries are as serious as Andy's, they sometimes need, um, adjustments." She fumbles over her words, something I've noticed she does whenever she speaks. "As Andy is, um, in a coma, she's obviously not able to accept said adjustments. And I suppose even if she wasn't awake she'd need someone to do it for her, as she is still, technically, a minor." Yet she's old enough to kill people.
I nod. " Okay."
The doctor points to an x-ray. "We'll start at the beginning. You remember just after she'd burnt the food? Another tribute, um," she furrows her brow and snaps her fingers whilst conjuring the name from her mind, "Julian. Julian found her."
Yeah, I remember. It was a blessing for the District Two tribute to die. But he wasn't killed before inflicting his own damage.
"He stood on Andy's right hand."
She looks at me for a second before nodding. "That's right. But I was watching while it happened. I do it every year to asses the injuries of the tributes most likely to win. And what I thought wasn't nearly as bad as it is."
Oh crap. This is just the beginning of bad news. Andy's succumbed to a number of serious injuries. "So... how bad is it?"
"Her hand and fingers were crushed. And I mean crushed." She points to an x-ray, and I see what she means. Her fingers are covered in cracks, every inch of them.
"Admitted, it could have been worse, but she was very wise how she went around with it. She and the boy Gads made a kind of wrap to keep it in place, so at least they had some common sense. This has made the most part of her hand and forefinger salvageable. But the wrap, also made the rest of her fingers un... salvageable."
I blink at her in confusion. How could the wrap Andy made fix and break her hand. "What? How, how did that even happen, how does that even work?!
The doctor sighs. "It helped her hand, but her last three fingers set in the wrong way, while they were still broken. They've fused back together in such a way that Andy wouldn't even be able to use them."
"Okay..." I get a feeling she's going to say something more
"We're removing her fingers."
My eyes widen in shock, and I grab onto the nearest table. How could I not have predicted that? I suppose I should have, but still... The removal of three of her fingers, at least it's not on her writing hand. Will she still be able to use her hand?
"Okay... Okay... Does she, um. Will she have-"
"Replacements? Yeah. And that's, um, why I brought you here. You need to choose whether to sign for her or not."
"What, now?!" Andy's still in a coma, shouldn't she have a say?
"Unfortunately. I tried to get more time for her, but my superiors like to do things quickly." I'm surprised at the tinge of bitterness in her voice, and look at the doctor in shock. Her kind brown eyes are sympathetic. I realise that she may be one of the Capitol citizens not completely brainwashed.
"Okay... Okay. Give me the sheet." I hold my hand out whilst she looks an another table, full of sheets. She picks one up, and almost hands it to me before realising that it's not the right one. She looks again and passes one to me.
I scan through the details, and check it says something to do with fingers added to the right hand, and then I sign. I write my name in the neighbouring box, and then read the next. RELATION TO PATIENT:. What do I write?
"Um, what do I write here?" I point to the box.
"Oh," she waves her arm in front of her, and I get a glimpse of a tattoo under her doctors coat. 'Anything. 'Mentor', 'Friend'. Whatever you think is suitable."
I'm not sure that Andy considers me as a friend, so I write 'Mentor'.
"Is that it?" I ask.
"Not quite. Do you recall the final fight? One tribute had a spiked mace?" Yeah, I remember. I remember Andy bleeding out due to the numerous perforations left by the bite of the weapon. I nod.
"The mace hit the edge of her left hand."
Oh no. Not her left hand. I put a hand to my temple. "She lost more fingers, didn't she?"
"We couldn't fix them." She sounds apologetic.
"Four. But with the fake ones it won't be like they're even gone... Maybe." SHe acts though she has to say this to convince herself. This doctor is somewhat down-to-earth. I like her, surprisingly.
"Give me the sheet." I look at the sheet, and read some of it, I'm not even sure why but I do.
NAME: Andrea Carmel Phelan
WOUNDS: Crushed right hand: forefinger and thumb salvageable. Crushed left hand; extensive damaging of four fingers, unable to repair. Surgery performed to right leg due to stab wounds. Plastic surgery to face, torso, arms and legs due to scar damage. Extensive surgery and plastic surgery to torso; torn apart by multiple mace wounds, surgery to replace skin and fix scars. Multiple transfusions.
The list goes on. I sigh, and run a hand through my hair. She's thirteen. Thirteen, and she's needed surgery to repair practically every inch of her body. Thirteen and she's in a coma. Thirteen and she's killed people. It doesn't seem fair.
"She's just thirteen." I say, to myself more than anything.
Angela surprises me though. "I know." I look at her, and she's looking at photographs taken of Andy's wounds. "Too young to have gone through all she has."
I look at her in shock. Most Capitol citizens- and by most I mean the vast majority- seem to forget that the Hunger Games is real. And that people actually die because of it. Apparently the good doctor doesn't.
She notices me looking, because she laughs and says "Don't look at me like that. Most people in the Capitol... Don't see the effects of the Games. The casualties. They see entertainment. But... I've seen a lot of victors. I've even seen the not so lucky tributes. Seeing the victors... While they're healing..." She seems deep in thought, and very troubled, "Well let's just say it changes you. It makes an eighteen year old seem ten. You were like it."
I look down at the mention of my Games. I recovered pretty quickly, nowhere near as long as it will take Andy, by anybody's predictions But the Games still mentally change anyone.
"So... how young is Andy to you?" I say quietly.
"A child. Too young, anyway. Too young to have fought so many. I'm scared to think of the psychological effects she's bound to have."
It's true. I had nightmares. I still do. So does Johanna. I don't know what victor doesn't. But it'll be even worse for Andy, thirteen and killer. What she'll think of herself... it just doesn't seem fair.
I look at the sheet in my hand, and sign it quickly, I want it out of my sight as soon as possible.
I start to leave, but stop momentarily. "When will she wake up?"
She looks up, and runs a hand through her blonde hair.
"From what… I can see.." She taps her fingers against her desk twice, "Some time. Her blood loss is quite extensive, it may take two days, it may take two months. But… the Capitol has ways to wake people, and it will happen to her in about a month."
I frown, "Why?"
"They'll make her." She says. "She's almost fourteen. And they'll love it if she's crowned on her birthday. So if I were you, Woosley, I'd figure out what to say when she wakes up."
This doctor is good. I hope the President doesn't find out that she secretly had doubts when it comes to the Games, it won't end well for her if he ever did.
I nod. "Thanks for the heads up."
She smiles, her kind eyes twinkling. "Anytime."
Ha ha ha ha the sequel. woo. Anyway, cause it's the first one I dont really have anything to say apart from it'd be really cool if you messaged me with your thoughts about Andy's wounds, and give me a guestimate about when you think she'll wake up, if you get it right you can give me something you want me to put in a future chapter like a character or quote or anything.
OH AND I NEED SOME DISTRICT 7 PEOPLE. SO if you have an aching desire to have you character or something be a victor just tell me and I'll probably use them.
SO, replies to the last chapter:Graceaga: I think it did, thank you. And I hope this chapter lived up to your expectations :)
Rdude1213: I hope so too :) Oh god I cant believe people cried at it
HpHgPjGone: Thank you!
TributeAndProud: Thanks, it means a lot :)
LoopyToucan: I'm sorry I'm really sorry
mtdelaney: Maaaadddyyyyy. Ah I love you, you're the best, and let's hope his reaction was adequate :D
Theuglyduckling492: wooooo, thanks man :)
TheBiohazardVictim: I WILL kill you with feels
(And hey, the first part is almost at 200 reviews! Yay!)