The 66th Hunger Games

66 years ago, the 13 districts of Panem rebelled against the oppressive Capitol, and failed. In order to keep the remaining 12 districts in check, the Capitol devised a new way to control them. Each year, one male and one female between the ages of 12 and 18 shall be offered up to compete in a sporting event known as the Hunger games, where they shall fight to the death until one remains, a victor that' be revered as a celebrity in the Capitol and live a life of luxury.

66 years later, the tradition still goes strong. See through the eyes of 15 year old District 3 tribute Elektra Sparke as she enters this deadly game. However, the one person she never thought would be her fellow competitor is, and she takes it upon herself to protect him. However, in a deadly arena where your death is in every direction, nobody can be trusted.


19. Victory is Always Bittersweet

Victor. Me. I won. I won!

I hear the cheering of the crowd through the speaker. They're cheering for me. I see a hovercraft emerge. Suddenly, I'm lifted into the air. I'm frozen in place, my arm barely holding on. The pain is agonising, but I don't care right now. I survived the Hunger Games. I'm going to go home, I'm going to see my mother again.

The woman that injected my tracker lifts me up onto the hovercraft, and injects me with something. Everything goes fuzzy, and then black.

I open my eyes, and I'm in a bed. I'm wearing a robe. I prop myself up and-

I look at my arm. It's no longer hanging by a thread, it's fixed. I check my other arm as well. It's not horribly deformed. In fact, I look exactly how I did before I was thrown into the Games. I get out of bed and find some food on the bedside stand.

I chug the coffee and devour the soup faster than what I thought possible. An Avox enters the room, holding some clothing. I thank him, and fear engulfs him. I still don't understand why they're afraid of positive reactions. He places the outfit on the bed, and quickly scampers away. It's the same outfit I wore on launch day, complete with my pendant. I put them on, and open the door.

I'm greeted by Rory, who practically tackles me to the floor.
"Oh my Elekky-poo, I knew you had it in you? Did you see the medicine you got? I was the one who gathered the sponsors for that? Aren't you thankful?"
"Careful, she's probably just woken, and you wouldn't want to undo the operations would you? Her arm's still weak," I see Beetee and Wiress, who look elated. I run over to them, and embrace them.
"Congratulations. You're nearly done with these games. You just have the victor's ceremony, and then we're going home," I see my prep team behind my mentors. Never before have I been so happy to see the bundle of multicoloured people. They pry me out of my embrace, and bring me into a sterile room.

They proceed to remove any imperfections on my body, and put make-up on me, during which they discuss the Games. They discuss the number of parties they attended because of my progress in the arena, and how they missed certain deaths. One of them mentions how they may try to become an escort for the next games. Finally, after hours of mindless drawl, they call Apollo in.

He walks over to me, and also hugs me.
"Great job out there. I'm so glad you came back, you've been one of the best tributes I've worked with in my whole career," he lightly kisses me on the forehead, before covering my eyes.

I feel him sliding the fabric on. After a few minutes, he opens my eyes, and I gasp at myself in the mirror.
"Your ceremony outfit," he says softly. It's beautiful. My hair's done up in the most elegant design, and my outfit is to die for. It's a magnificent white ball-gown, complimenting my hair perfectly. And every few seconds, it pulses a slight golden light. It reminds me of the lights the trees are decorated with during the holidays.
"It's beautiful," Is all I can say. It's truly wonderful. We walk out into the hallway, towards the elevator. I step in alone, and it closes. As it goes up, I can hear cheering and applause.

When it stops, I'm blinded by a bright light. For a brief moment, I think I'm at the bloodbath again, and internally chastise myself for thinking like that. I see Caesar Flickerman standing on stage.
"And here she is! Ladies and gentlemen, the victor of the sixty sixth annual Hunger Games, Elektra Sparke!" The crowd goes wild as I walk over to the seat. Suddenly, the lights dim, and a giant monitor flickers to life.

Right. The first part of the victor's ceremony requires the victor to watch the highlights of the Games. The anthem plays, and the film shown at the reapings plays. It then cuts to the reapings, showing us all making our way to the stage. It then shows a few trains arriving in the Capitol; the Career districts, and District 3.

The film jumps to the chariot parade, showing the best tributes. It shows the full journey of ours, and I see my parade outfit. It truly did steal the show. It then shows about half an hour's footage of training. I didn't even know they were filming the training. It cuts to our interviews, and tears threaten to show as I see how happy Samuel appeared. He should be home right now, not dead in a coffin.

The music becomes more intense, and I see the bloodbath has begun. I see the girl from 6 explode. It then shows each death. The boy from 9 is strangled by the boy from 4, both from 7 are torn to shreds by District 2, Luke's partner and the boy from 5 are both impaled by a trident, the girl from 9 is shot by an arrow, and the boy from 11 is savagely attacked by District 4. It shows me running out of there, and hiding in the first building. It shows the girl from 5 climbing a tree, and putting her hand right into the tracker jacker nest, then her death. I really didn't want to see that again.

It then shows Lynn running from the Careers, and you can hear the desperation in her voice. I close my eyes as she's hacked to pieces. It shows Kai holding her armless body, hearing her last words. It then shows the boy from 2 writing the message. Then me finding Samuel. It cuts to the conflict as me and Samuel flee from the Careers. I see the boy from 2 stab my back with his sword, and push me out of the window. He then gets tripped by Samuel and is impaled by his own sword. The crowd roars with laughter at this.

It briefly shows the other tributes, then cuts to me taking the pill Samuel found. Then us falling into the sewer. It shows the fight between me and the girl from 1, and her death. Then me reuniting with Luke, and our journey to the Cornucopia. Then us traversing the trap filled greenery. I know what's coming...

And it happens, the axe flying into Samuel's head. I cover my ears and shut my eyes, trying to block it out. But I can hear his dying voice. I look up, and see that the scene's changed to the monster breaking down the sewer wall. Us running, and Kai's gruesome death. I see our group disperse, and I see the beast follow Luke. I see me running through the collapsing tunnel, barely making it out. It jumps to me running into Kathrynn, then cuts to Luke, who's running for his life, before being crushed by the beast.

It skips to me eating the medicine ball, and District 12's false break up. It shows the remaining tributes making their way to the feast.

It plays the feast in full detail, the girl from 11's death, me and Martyn killing the boy from 1 and the girl from 4, Martyn's attempted assassination, me blacking out. It shows the interior of the building; a maze with constantly rotating walls that quickly split them all up. The girl from 2 jumps out of the window, and the earthquake begins. I see the ground opening up, and the buildings collapse. It cuts to Kathrynn running from a wave of the slime into a corner, where she's submerged. Then the golden building's collapse. It shows every last detail of the final showdown; me nearly losing my arm, her being tripped, and finally me pushing her into the toxic river below. The film ends with the announcement that I won, and the seal of the Capitol appears again. The lights go on, and Caesar turns to face me.

"Well, that was quite an experience in the arena, I bet!" he chuckles. This disgusts me, how he takes watching the deaths of 23 children so lightly. But still I smile sweetly.
"It was, Caesar. Quite a few times I thought that it was the end, but obviously I was wrong, since I'm now a victor!" the crowd erupts in applause.

Suddenly, President Snow walks on stage, bearing a golden crown with the number 66 engraved on it. I rise, and he places it on my head. He then holds my hand up, and addresses the crowd.
"I congratulate Elektra Sparke of District 3 for becoming the victor of the sixty sixth Hunger Games," his breath smells of roses, and for a brief moment, I smell blood. The anthem of Panem plays, and Caesar dismisses the crowd, and the ceremony draws to a close.

I walk off stage and find my mentors and Rory waiting. They congratulate me on how well everything went, and tell me that the train to return back to District 3 is ready. We walk outside into a huge car, and drive to the train station. It's as if there's one massive street party spanning the entire city. We finally reach the train station, and I board the train. It sets off, leaving the sunset Capitol behind.

As the train enters the tunnel, a horrible thought occurs to me; I'll have to mentor next year, and at least one of the tributes'll die. I walk into the dining cart, and pull Beetee aside.
"Hey, Beetee. Am I correct in thinking that I'll be mentoring the tributes next year?" he shakes his head, and smiles slightly.
"No. Unless the victor is desirable, or there aren't two already available, they have a one year respite period, to take in their new lifestyle," he says. This cheers me up. So I won't have to mentor next year's games.

I enter my cabin after dinner, take off my dress, and slide under the covers of the bed. I wake up early the next morning, and get dressed in a simple blue shirt and pants. I slip my pendant on, and join the others for breakfast. Once I've finished eating, I sit next to the window, and watch as District 3 comes into view. Home. The train passes through the fence bordering the district, and pulls up in the train station. I see the crowd outside my window, waiting for me to arrive. But one person catches my eye. My mother, standing on the platform. She sees me, and begins to cry. The train stops, and the door opens.

I run out of the door, and fling myself into her arms, and begin to cry myself.
"I've missed you so much," she says, holding me tight. I'd forgotten how comforting a mother's embrace is.
"Me too," I reply, not letting go. Suddenly, the rest of the world becomes distant, it's just me and my mother. We're together again, and we'll stay together for the rest of time.

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