The Perks of The Hunger Games

For the Fan-fiction crossover competition. When Charlie is reaped into the Hunger Games, he really doesn't expect he is going to win. He's quiet, small, and not the bravest, but definitely the most observant. This is his journey through the games. In the style of Stephen Chbosky.

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1. The Reaping

Dear Friend,

Today was tough. It started when I woke up, as normal, in my home, in District 6, in Panem. It was cold, and the air was dry, and I was filled with dread from the very moment my eyes opened. Of course I was. It's reaping day. Who doesn't wake up with dread? Well, maybe careers, but not anyone around here. The adults eyes are sad and scared, as they prepare themselves to watch their neighbor's, or their own, children die. One boy, one girl, every single year. 

I got dressed, I cleaned myself up, I did everything as usual. My parents, brother and sister were still in bed, making the most of their lie in, but I'm not. Of course I'm not. I went outside, did my chores, and went to meet Sam and Patrick. I asked them if they were scared.

"No, of course not, and neither should you. Your name isn't in there a lot." Sam told me, reassuringly.

"You'll beat the hell out of them, Charlie." Patrick said, and I hoped he was right. I don't think I'd do too well in the Games.

We walked to the square,and signed in. I was shivering like crazy, but a smile off Sam was enough to calm me down. Sam walked off to her bit, and Patrick did the same, and there I stood. Stranded. I've done this four times now, and never been chosen, but who knows what will happen?

A tall, strangely-dressed lady stood on the stage, and played the propaganda, and I began to cry. I knew I would. I'm too over-emotional. Sam caught my eye, and mouthed something nice. Well, I hoped it was nice, though I can't lip-read, so I wouldn't know. She stood there, among the older kids, her shoulders back, and her head held high, looking very confident. I wished I was confident at that moment.

Important people flooded onto the stage, and spoke to us, and I couldn't help admiring their power, and their ability to speak publicly. I listened hard, because they obviously cared about what they were saying, and no one else was listening, so I thought it polite. Even if they were discussing our deaths.

At last, they picked the names. I hoped against hope, that it wasn't Sam. I couldn't bare it, if it were.

"Lydia Burton." The lady said, and everyone's heads turned towards the back, and their eyes rested on this tiny, meek little girl, who must be twelve. I didn't know her, but some of the people around me did, and they all called out to her, for reassurance. One boy cried, she is his little sister, and I patted his back, awkwardly. Lydia mounted the stage, tears streaming down her face, and I felt sad. It's obvious she will die. Everybody knows it. Even her.

The lady then moved onto the boys. We held our breaths. She picked a name. And she read it. And I cried some more. Because it was me.

Now I am on the train, to the Capitol, and have not stopped crying since I was chosen. I said goodbye to my family. The lucky ones, that will never have to die in an arena. All I can hope is that they'll all live long, happy lives, with no more pain. I hope their kids aren't reaped, and I hope that Sam and Patrick never have to go through this. I'll miss them so much.

Love always,

Charlie

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