Author Notes: This is my first attempt at a Hunger games fan fiction. I've read a lot of these characters read the books, mostly about Harry Potter and the Twilight series but never about the Hunger Games, I haven't done nearly enough research to know if such stories exist (they probably do). This isn't the main character's reading the books, such as, Katniss, Peeta, Gale, Haymitch etc reading the books, no this is their children discovering the books. For the point of this story they know nothing about the hunger games or their parents' involvement in the games or the rebellion, I always imagine that Katniss and Peeta, not telling their children about the horrible past. Imagine finding these books about your family, the unedited version it must be scarring in itself, to know your parents, have gone through unimaginable horror, and have to kill people to survive. Well this is how I imagine they would react.
Rose Mellark: Katniss and Peeta's daughter.
Matthew Mellark: Katniss and Peeta's son.
Finnick Odair Jr (Finn): Annie and Finnick's son.
Sophie Hawthorne: Gale's Daughter
Ryan Dale: Johanna's son.
Other character's will appear later in the story but these are the main 5.
Rose Mellark crawled across the grass, quietly trying to improve her view of the rabbit, she approached the rabbit quietly not wanting to scare the thing off. Stealth was the most important thing when hunting, never mind how small or big the prey was, any slight noise could make the animal run. Rose raised her bow and aimed it at the defenceless animal, she knew that her aim wasn't as good as her Mother's but she wasn't a bad shot either, better than a lot of people could ever dream of becoming. Right when Rose let go of the arrow, a rustling behind her made the rabbit run in fear, making the arrow miss completely and embedding itself in the tree behind the rabbit. Rose got to her feet ready to confront whoever made her miss her shot.
"Wow, now that was embarrassing," the unmistakable voice of Finnick Odair came from behind her laughing.
"Damn you Finn, you made me miss," Rose shouted, turning around to face him, he was standing right behind her, one look in his blue/ green eyes made her anger fade though. Even though she would never admit it to him, his presence alone made her calmer, well until he started speaking that was.
"It's not my fault your aim sucks," Finn defended himself. Rose raised her bow and pointed it at Finn, making Finn raise his hands in mock defeat.
"What was that about my aim?"
"You wouldn't hurt your best friend would you?"
"You mean Ryan and Sophie, no your right I could never hurt them. You I just tolerate," Rose said a smile playing on her lips not able to keep a straight face. Out of the five children it was her and Finn who were the closest, them being the oldest, they bonded the most. Even though Finn was five years older than Rose, they practically grew up together, even though they were from different districts, Finn and his mother Annie, visited often along with Ryan and his parents Johanna and Zack.
"What are you doing here anyway fish boy?" Rose asked dropping her bow and putting it on the ground.
"Don't you remember, it's that time of year again," Finn said not going into any details; Rose knew what he was talking about. Every year, a select number of families from all over Panem come to District twelve for a celebration that lasted a few days, all the schools and shops would close in preparation for this special day. But Rose's parents had never told her what it was for just said it was to celebrate the ending of a particular dark period in their history, but refused to say any more than that. Her parent's, Finn's Mum, Ryan's parents and Sophie's mum and Dad went every year but from what I could tell from Mum, it was more of an obligation than a desire to go, actually none of the adults liked going, especially Mum and Finn's Mum. Our Uncle Haymitch was invited to go every year but he down right refused and was usually left in charge of looking after us kids instead, much to his dismay. They were never allowed to go, but when Finn turned eighteen they usually left them alone.
"Oh right the mysterious party. Did you try and ask your Mum about it again?" Rose asked. Finn's face turned serious when Rose asked about his mother, must not have gone well.
"Yes, but she just ignored me and would pretend that I didn't say anything. The moment I tried to bring the subject up again, she had one of her episodes," Finn said settling down on a big rock, Rose sat down next to him, she knew how hard it was for him to discuss his Mum's issues. "She started to sing to herself and covered her ears; she locked herself in her room for three days until she came out again acting like nothing happened."
Rose never knew what happened to Aunt Annie, her Mum and Dad never told them, said that they were too young to understand. Rose only witnessed one of her episodes, once when she was eight years old; her and Matthew had gone to visit Finn in District four and while Matthew was talking, Aunt Annie had suddenly started screaming at the top of her voice, after taking Annie upstairs Peeta had immediately taken them home. Matthew blamed himself but Peeta had explained softly that Annie was different because of something that happened in the past, something that she couldn't control and that Matthew was not to blame, they never asked again why Aunt Annie had these episodes. Finn only ever mentioned them when they were alone; Rose thought it must have been easier with someone to talk to.
"I'm sorry Finn," Rose whispered not knowing what else to say. Even though Rose was happy that Finn trusted her enough to talk to her about it, she still felt uncomfortable and unsure of what to say.
"It's not your fault Rose. I just wish that I could do more for her, I feel so useless when she has her moments, and I just want to know what's going on inside her head at that moment of time. Its time like these that I wish that I could turn to Dad for advice, I'm sure he'd know what to do." Finn's dad had died before he was even born, all Rose knew about Finn's Dad were the thing that her parents would say and they were very little, apparently Finn looked a lot like him and acted like him too.
"You know you can talk to my Dad, I'm sure he could help," Rose offered but knowing that her Dad wouldn't be much comfort to him.
"Thanks, but it's really more of a father, son conversation," Finn said, sadness in his eyes. Even though he never said it, Rose knew he was thinking about the fact that a father, son conversation would never happen. Rose wrapped her arm around him, hoping that would be enough to give him support. She couldn't imagine ever being able to go home and speak to her Father, even though she was close to her mother, it was her father she went to for advice and sometimes she felt like she took for granted having a father to talk things over with.
"Maybe not, but he could shed some light on why your Mum has these episodes," Rose said. She knew both her parents knew what happened in Annie's past to make her like this but they weren't willing to tell their children what happened. Rose knew it must have been terrible, why else would they keep it from her and especially Finn.
"It's not your Father's place to tell, if Mum wanted me to know, she'd tell me herself," Finn reasoned. Rose understood that but she hated the idea that her parents were lying to her or purposely withholding information about their past. But she knew that, both of her parents weren't telling her the truth about their lives, they never spoke about their childhood or even how they met.
Rose didn't say anything else just let Finn be alone with his thoughts, if he needed her he'd say something. Her father always said you have to know when to stop talking and just be there for someone. After ten minutes of staring into space, Finn jumped to his feet.
"We better get going, Sophie and Ryan are here and their wanting to see you," Finn said sounding like his normal self again, offering his hand to help Rose up.
"Ok then," Rose said accepting his hand to pull herself up.
"But thanks for listening though Rosie," Finn said smiling.
"You're welcome," Rose replied. She was glad she was able to help. "By the way Odair if you ever call me Rosie again I will use that bow and arrow for real on you." Her words didn't get the desired effect on him.
"I would start practicing then Rosie, I've seen you shoot and I run a lot faster than that rabbit," Finn said laughing not even a little bit scared.
"Or maybe I will get Mum to do a bit of target practice on your ass." Finn's smile dropped instantly and he stopped laughing. That was the reaction she wanted
As they walked to Rose's house, they passed through the town. As they walked past the oldest house's in the neighbourhood, the part of the town that wasn't rebuilt after the fire, over twenty years ago. Rose paused at the house that her Mum always pointed out to her, her Mum's childhood home. It was a tiny house; it barely looked big enough to hold one person never mind a family of four, her mother must have been poor, if this small house was where she grew up.
"This was Mum's childhood home," Rose said before Finn could ask why they'd stopped.
"It's nice, real spacious," Finn commented.
"It was destroyed in the fire genius. I've never even looked inside," Rose said ready to move on, not knowing why she even stopped he went past this house all the time. Rose turned to Finn who was already at the boarded up door, taking down the boards, so they could get inside.
"What are you doing?" Rose demanded.
"Aren't you curious what it looks like inside, your always complaining about not knowing anything about your parents past, maybe this place will have the answers?" Finn did have a point, but it felt wrong to break into her mother's old house, without her permission.
"Its vandalism and not to mention breaking and entering," Rose said looking around her furiously hoping no one see's what they are doing.
"What am I going to do, mess this place up more? Besides the place looks like it has been abandoned for years, I don't think the police are going to bat an eye lid about us looking into an old home that belongs to your family anyway." Finn tore off the last bit of the door and swung the door open, and gestured for Rose to go in first.
"Five minutes and we're out of here," Rose mumbled entering carefully in the crumbling house. Rose took a look around the room that was obviously used to be the kitchen slash living room. The fire had destroyed everything, beyond recognition, no wonder her Mum never wanted to speak about the fire.
"How did your family even survive this?" Finn asked.
"Mum wasn't home and apparently a family friend helped her Mother and sister escape," Rose said blankly, trying to hide the tears that were forming. Not saying another word, Rose entered the other room that must have been the bedroom; this room was just as destroyed as the other room. But someone had obviously been here since the fire, as there were a bunch of boxes, which obviously never been in the fire, but had been untouched for years, as they were gathering dust on the tops. To her knowledge no one had been in this house after the fire, but why keep this house to store old boxes. She knew that whatever was in those boxes, were none of her business, but her curiosity got the best of her and she knelt beside them and opened one of them up. Most of the boxes contained old clothes and toys which probably belonged to her Mum's little sister Primrose. Like most of her Mother's past, Rose didn't know much about Primrose, except that she had died young and it hit her mother hard, Rose didn't like to ask about her Aunt, as she knew it upset her Mum. On the top of a box, there was a broach, a circular gold pin with a small bird in the middle, Rose recognised the bird it was a Mockingjay, and her mum had told her about them.
"What's that?" Finn asked pointing to the broach in my hand.
"Just some old broach," Rose dismissed it and passed it to him. Finn looked it over and then put it back in the box. Not wanting to look through any more boxes, Rose stood up and made my way to the door.
"Let's go Finn, we shouldn't be here," Rose said but Finn was too busy looking at some book to pay attention to me.
"Rosie, what is your mother's maiden name again?" Finn asked to her surprise he knew what her mother's name was.
"Everdeen, you know that Finn," Rose replied but Finn didn't look up but his eyebrows furrowed together in deep concentration. "Why do you ask?" That brought Finn's attention back to her.
"Oh no reason, let's go," Finn said jumping to his feet shoving the book back in the box and started to lead Rose out the door but her interests had been piped by his reaction to that book. Rose dodged his arm and grabbed the book from the box. "Rose, don't." Too late the book was already in her hands. 'The Hunger Games' it said she had never heard of it. Finn tried to grab the book from her hands but she dodged it and ran to the side of the room, flipping the book over to read the description on the back.
Losing will make you famous. Losing means certain death.
In a dark vision of the future, twelve boys and twelve girls are forced to appear in a live TV show called the hunger games. There is only one rule: kill or be killed.
When sixteen year old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her sister's place in the games, she sees it as death sentence. But Katniss has been close to death before. For her, survival is second nature.
When she had read the summary, Rose dropped the book and just stared at her now empty shaking hands. She couldn't believe it, it must be a lie, it was obviously some made up story, and it was just some kind of a coincidence that it had her mother's name on the back.
"Rosie," Finn said coming towards her and put his hand on her shoulder.
"It's a lie Finn, it's not real," Rose shouted, the tears were coming now thick and fast.
"I know Rosie, I know, let's leave and forget about the book," Finn said smoothly to her. That was easier said than done, now she has seen the book it will always be at the back of her mind. Did this book hide the answers to all the questions she's ever had about her parent's? Now she's seen it, she knew that she had to read it.
"Why does it have my mum's name on it Finn?" Rose said calming down a bit now but only a bot.
"I don't know, maybe it's just a coincidence, maybe your Mum was a friend of the author and she used your mum as inspiration for the main character," Finn reasoned. That could be true, but Rose didn't believe it, she had never heard of this Suzanne Collins, if they were such close friends surely she would have said something to Rose about her.
"Then why hide the book?" Rose questioned. "Do you think this is what she has been hiding from me?"
"No," Finn answered immediately without thinking about it. "If these so called death games existed don't you think we would have heard about them by now?" Rose didn't respond she just picked the book from the ground and threw it in her backpack. "What are you doing?"
"I'm going to read it," Rose answered.
"Why would you do that?"
"I want answers if my parents won't tell me, maybe this book will." Finn sighed and picked the other two books he found in the box and passed them to Rose.
"Maybe these will help as well," Finn said. Rose didn't say anything she just put the books into her bag as well. "Don't read them alone, wait until me, Ryan, Sophie and Matthew are with you."
"For support, I have a feeling these books aren't a real feel good story and you should have people around you when you read them."
"Thanks but I don't want Matthew reading these books if they are as bad as I'm imagining them in my head," Rose refused.
"He's fifteen Rose hardly a child. If these books turn out to be about your Mum don't you think he has the right to read them as much as you do?" Finn argued.
"Your right, let's go and meet up with them now," Rose said leaving the house.