A/N: Hey! I know, anyone who submitted to Burning Blood (my other SYOT) is probably really pissed that I'm starting a new one. Don't worry, I'm not quitting on that one, especially since it's closed now!
And don't worry, there's only 24 spots, not the grand total of (wait for it...) 288 tributes. Which is 24 tributes per district, by the way. This is a version where there was never a rebellion, and Katniss Everdeen was just a girl from District 12, and Prim was never reaped, and Peeta died in the 74th Hunger Games. So in other words, the Games continued.
Oh, by the way, the title of this story and the song quote in the summary are from the song Lose Yourself by Eminem. I couldn't help it... I'm a huge Eminem fan. Plus that little part of the song inspired this story. :D
Kenzie Hilstead, Head Gamemaker, was restless that night. It was only her first year as a Gamemaker, but President Lockwood insisted that she had true talent and promoted her right away. And the 200th annual Hunger Games were only eight months away. It seemed like a long time, but it wasn't, considering the arena plans. Actually, scratch that. She had no arena plans at all yet. Every time she thought of something, President Lockwood turned it down. "You can do better than that," Lockwood would insist. He would stroke his short blond beard for a little, looking at her plans, and shake his head. "This is the 200th Games, and a Quarter Quell! Make it something so special, so mind-blowing, that all of Panem will be in shock."
But nothing that Kenzie thought up was good enough for him.
Nevertheless, despite her worries, she somehow managed to fall asleep. And hours later, when she woke up from a vivid dream, she had the perfect idea. An idea that would make President Lockwood himself astonished. An arena where the tributes would lose themselves.
Kenzie was wearing her very best blue dress, which was covered in real sapphires that shimmered under the electric lights. It brought out her eyes. Her long black hair was braided down her back. And most importantly, she was holding a binder full of her plans and sketches for the arena. She was ready to greet President Lockwood to her apartment. Of course, she'd had to clean it up, since she was a total slob most of the time. But not with her Gamemaking work. Never.
Then the doorbell rang, and she stepped forward quickly, opening the door for the President of Panem. He was her age, in his thirties, with blond hair, and he wore a fancy suit. She forced a smile to her face, trying not to look as petrified as she felt. "Hello," she said, gesturing to her living room. "Come in, come in." They sat down at opposite ends of her dining room table, and Kenzie set down her binder. "Here," she said proudly. "This is the best I've ever thought up. You can't turn down this one."
President Lockwood smiled, but he didn't look like her believed her. He opened the binder. Of course, Kenzie had saved the best for last, and first were her arena sketches and plans for muttation breeding. His eyes swept slowly over a sketch of a ring of enormous trees around the arena, and a force field right after them, nodding approvingly. "Good, good," he said, smiling. He flipped through the muttation plans -some especially horrible beasts that were the results of two different muttations of the same genus mating. "Also very well done. I agree, this is your best... but what about the arena itself?"
All that Kenzie had to do was point to the final piece of paper, handwritten and scrawled sloppily onto a piece of paper torn from a notebook.
Lockwood's eyes traced the paper, and then they slowly widened. "'The arena will cover all of the territory of Panem, excepting the districts and the Capitol,'" he reads aloud from the paper, looking shocked. Kenzie was taking it all in with a hopeful smile. "'The citizens of the districts will be temporarily transferred to the Capitol, because contact between districts and the Capitol would cut through the arena if everyone was in the districts. I know perfectly well that there's space for that if Capitol citizens let District families live in their homes.'" He chuckled. "True, true, but what the hell if the Capitol citizens don't like it?"
"I know, exactly," Kenzie said breathlessly. "Do you like it? The idea, I mean."
After a few seconds of thought, in which Kenzie could barely stand, President Lockwood nodded. "It's literally the best idea I've ever seen in my life, Ms. Hilstead," he said with a grin. "But there's one flaw." Kenzie's heart sank. "There's only twenty-four tributes. And your arena will cover almost all of Panem." Kenzie inwardly groaned. How had she not thought of this before?
"But," Lockwood continued. "But, I've been noticing something about the past Quarter Quells." Kenzie was on the edge of her seat now, waiting. "They're getting boring. I mean, twenty-four tributes is significant. As in the second Quarter Quell, forty-eight tributes was almost overwhelming for the districts." He grinned. "But say that we... cheated. Made our own Quarter Quell and changed it to even more tributes and an arena that covers all of Panem but the districts and the Capitol."
Kenzie smiled back, relieved and almost giddy with happiness. "How many tributes, do you think?" she asked.
"Oh, I'd say... hmm, how does twenty-four from each district sound to you?" he said. Kenzie nodded and smiled even bigger. "I'll take that as a yes."
"So..." Kenzie said, thinking. "So the interviews and all that stuff wouldn't be really long, how about we have two tributes represent their district's tributes, so it's a little like normal. One boy, and one girl."
President Lockwood started laughing, and nodded. "This is going to be literally the best Games we'll ever see," he declared with a grin, and there was a maniac glint in Kenzie's eyes as she laughed with him.
Okay, guys, I've got a few rules for you.
1.) Please submit through PM only. I'm not accepting tributes that are reviewed in.
2.) In case you just skipped my author's note, there's only twenty-four spots for submission, like usual. Your tributes will be the district representatives.
3.) I'm NOT doing first-come first-serve this time, so please don't send in a really boring form.
4.) The tribute list will be on my profile.
Name (first and last):
District (top 2 in order):
Physical appearance (please include eye color, hair color, skin color, and other important things...):
Family and background:
Any suggestions for this district's opening ceremonies costumes:
Weapons or other skills used for individual sessions with the Gamemakers:
Friends or love interests back in the district:
Approximate weight in pounds:
Approximate height in feet and inches:
Bloodbath and Games strategies:
Weaknesses (optional, and if you do, only put two major ones):
District token (optional):
Anything else I missed:
Okay, that's it for now! Hope you enjoy!