The lullaby of the reaping

An emotional diary entry of one girl's thoughts of the hunger games having been through them, and having to prepare for the next reaping...


1. The lullaby of the reaping

I looked up into the night sky. It was so beautiful, so warm, so full of hope.
But I knew that my eyes were deceiving me. It was cold and dangerous and ruthless, and for miles and miles between each swirling, savage ball of gas, sat an empty oblivion.
But I was here. I was on Earth. In Panem. Alive.
The peaceful planet. My welcoming home.
The eye of the hurricane.

War and power had consumed me. It sat in my heart pumping blood around my body. Blood which I had risked. Blood which hadn't been spilled. But none of it meant anything.
Blood coursing through my veins was just a process. I had no feelings. I was just a machine. A machine with a beating heart and an individual brain. But I daren't think individual thoughts anymore. It was too painful to risk.
Too painful to feel.
Too painful to know what I had become.

I was simply a product of the the hunger games. Going through life with a fake smile, searching hopelessly for the dark black pit where I'd forgotten my humanity.
But it was so far away.

The day of the reaping was tomorrow. Twenty four new contestants would be chosen. Twenty three personalities wiped from this world. And as for the survivor, I daren't think what would become of them.

Sleep hadn't been a friend of mine since the day of my "victory", so I spent the night watching clips of previous games, transfixed by the mixture of savagery and terror. The way laws had been twisted and warped for this evil vindication. The way the tributes' hands shook as they held their weapons for the first time in the arena, only to be torn down by the brutal ways of the game.

I switched the videos off and listened to the silence of the night as it tore through the district. It was briefly broken by a child crying in the distance and then it was still. Just the wind whistling and the sound of my clock ticking away the time.
Tick...tick... Tick.

District nine had gathered together, huddled and terrified, like pigs about to be taken for slaughter. On the big screen above everyone, the reaping had started.
Two tributes were chosen from each district. Some seemed delighted, others frightened and apprehensive. But one in particular caught my eye.
District twelve. Grey eyes, olive skin and black braided hair.
This girl had volunteered in place of her sister.
Her name was Katniss Everdeen.

And later that day,under the gentle glow of the sun, I smiled softly to myself as I sang a quiet lullaby and finally fell asleep for the first time in many years.

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