The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 21After the anthem played I was supposed to go on stage. I took a couple deep breaths to collect myself and put on a small smile, then walked out. The trip across the stage to the simple armchair felt a lot longer than it had all the other times I'd taken that walk across the stage.
The crowd was cheering and screaming. Some of the Capitol citizens were throwing flowers and kisses as I took my chair. I gave them a wave, then turned my attention to Caesar. He gave me a grin, but his eyes were sad. I knew he was thinking about how hard it must be for a tribute to sit here and watch everything that they'd been through all over again.
The large screens flickered into life, showing the Panem seal. Then it cut to the Reapings. I saw myself, touching hands with my brother, then standing defiantly next to Martin, my fellow tribute, not shielding the loathing I felt for him at that time. We didn't look scared, we looked tough, like you wouldn't want to get into a fight with us. Martin was gloweri
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 20When we landed on the rooftop of the building in which we had stayed, I couldn't help but look at that spot where I had kissed Sage, where we had shared all those moments of intimacy that were nothing real. They were all fake, a trick, nothing more but using me. I looked away, out towards the brightly lit city. The air felt warm and the breeze was sweet among the plants as it wafted about in the dark city air.
Sariah wrapped an arm around my shoulder, my backpack slung carelessly over her own, and then I saw my mother step out of the elevator and I ran towards her, tripping over my own feet in my haste to get to her. I fell on my knees, skinning them, but then I was up on my feet again a minute later, brushing bloody specks from my hands onto my jeans as I ran. I threw myself into her arms, holding her tight, smelling her sweet perfume I had known since childhood.
"I'm so glad you're here," I whispered.
"Normally they would have the designers either go home or choose to stay in the Cap
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 19I sat in shock, staring at the sky. I won? I had really won? But nothing showed up for me, no hovercraft to take me away, no message from the Capitol. Was I overlooking someone? Was there really one tribute still left?
I ventured out of the cave, wandering through the dark. I had strapped on several backpacks and taken any supplies that I could eat or use with me. I had tucked Martin's token, a small wooden carved bear, into my pocket before his hovercraft came to take his body.
There was movement behind me. Something was following me, something large and bulky which crashed now through the underbrush and ran straight towards me, power surging in its thick, ropey muscles. I slipped, falling to the ground as the wolf raced towards me. I scrambled in the snow and I got to my feet but the wolf slammed into me with a growl. I was thrown backwards into the snow, smacking my head against a tree trunk. Stars flashed before my eyes and the wolf prowled closer then leaped on top of me, sinking
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 18We spent the night shivering together in the Cornucopia. The metal was ice cold and the two thin blankets I had were barely keeping me from freezing. I even kept my gloves on and my hood up while I tried to sleep, but I was still cold. I took a while for my eyes to adjust to the dark but once they did II watched Martin's chest rise and fall. I decided it would be warmer if I curled up next to him. I shifted over, angling my body to match his, and I fell asleep a couple minutes later, wrapped in warmth.
I awoke to morning sunlight glinting off the Cornucopia. The air was warm and dry, seeming to promise no snow for the day. Finally, I thought, feeling a bit grumpy. My toes were beyond cold, as were my fingers. I felt like they were made from ice cubes. Martin and I ate some scraps of the leftover dried food from my first pack. Around the Cornucopia there were weapons in the snow.
"Would it be worth it?" Martin asked me, and I nodded.
If we could hoard all the weapo
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 17I closed my eyes, bracing myself to feel the knife sliding through my flesh, tearing me away from life, away from this world I wish I could continue to struggle through. There was a soft thump from behind Sage. I assumed it was snow, falling onto the ledge. Then Sage's weight was pulled off of me and I opened my eyes, surprised.
"Martin!" I gasped. Sage turned back to me and Martin was just behind him. He had no weapon in his hand, nothing to defend himself with. Sage raised his hand and threw the knife. I closed my eyes, knowing it was too late to move, too late to get away, that even if I tried I couldn't.
Martin dove in between us, taking the knife in the chest.
"NO!" I screamed, trying to get up, my back a shooting needle of pain from where Denzel had caught me with her knife. I steeled myself against the pain and dragged myself to Martin's side. I didn't realize I was crying until the tears fell onto his cheeks.
I looked up at Sage, my eyes blurring.
"You," I whispered. His empty
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 16We managed to get the carcass down into the cave. I hoped our hard work would pay off. If only there was a way we could make it into jerky, we would be free to travel and bring it with us, slowly picking off some of the other tributes if we could find them. Or we'd be picked off ourselves, but either way this competition would soon be over. I just hoped that one of us would be the winner, though I preferred it to be Martin. Sage could be such an ass, I thought, my face flushing.
"Why are we still hiding out in this cave?" I asked the other two as I lay on my sleeping ledge, my eyes focused on the cracks in the ceilings.
"Why not?" Sage asked. I could tell he was frowning by the tone of his voice. He sounded nervous and I wondered why, then dismissed the thought. I couldn't go caring for him anymore, no not after all the things that had happened.
"Well, we could end the games if we found the other tributes," Martin said. "However, that leaves the option that they could find us."
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 15Day two felt like it stretched on and on. The snow fell heavier than ever. Martin and I played a game he called pick up sticks, which we did with the smaller branches of our firewood. The first person jumped all the sticks together and the second tried to pick one up without moving the others. It got kind of boring after a while, which was to be expected, but I had still hoped we wouldn't tire of it so fast. I slept on and off, taking a couple more of the fever reducing pills. We had eaten, after Sage departed, the second portion of the dried food, leaving us with only enough for a meal for the three of us.
The night fell and we peered outside to watch the faces show in the sky. Two more people had died today; Anya Sart from District 5 and Liesa New from District 12. 8 competitors down, only 16 more to go.
"They'll force us together now. The Gamemakers won't let us hole up in this cave the entire competition, though I bet they'd love to see the three of us fight to the death," I said b
The 63rd Hunger Games - Part 14I clung to the cliff. Below me, the ledge was only about a four foot drop. The problem was it was covered in ice and landing wrong would send me over the edge. I couldn't call out to make sure that Sage and Martin were alright. There was the problem of being heard by whoever had killed the person nearby. I worried I was climbing down into a trap. I managed to get my hold back on the rocks and continued down, trying to balance between hurrying and being careful. My back ached and my head throbbed, but I didn't stop until I reached the ledge.
I peered around the corner into the cave. Sage was pacing the floor, his back to me.
"It had to have been her," he was mumbling.
Martin shook him by his shoulders. "It wasn't her. She would have screamed, she would have let us know. I know she would have."
I grabbed Sage, "calm down." He flinched so bad that I thought his elbow would hit me in the face. I ducked under his arm.
"I'm fine," I insisted. "See?" I turned a full circle, my arms out. "No b