Silence [Hunger Games Fanfiction]

Traumatized by her brother’s death, Raven Verona desperately wants to escape her past. But when she is chosen for the 31st Hunger Games, that becomes impossible.


An unwanted admirer.


A true soul mate.


23 enemies.


Let the Games begin


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4. Four

 Logan…

 I pinpointed him again in the crowd. He was shaking. His lips tightened and he pushed another boy out of the way to get to the stage.

 “Logan!” his father shouted. He stood, and rushed forward to hug his son as he scaled the stairs to the stage. Logan shook him off, a single tear trickling down his cheek.

 “Father, let go. Now.”

 After a short wrestle with his son, the Mayor obeyed, retreating to his seat, where Valeria put an arm around him and said something. Comforting him, I suppose. I could hear sobs wracking his body, his head in his hands. I understood how he felt. I felt the same. Logan stood on the other side of Eli, and drew himself to his full height, but he trembled in his place. I couldn’t bring myself to hate him any longer. We were in the same boat.

 “Ahh, lovely!” Eli cried “The Mayor’s son. What a turn of events! Aren’t we privileged! Do we have any volunteers?”

 The silence was deafening.

 “Well then. Here we have it. The tributes of District 10! Shake hands!”

 Logan reached for my hand and gripped it firmly, but as I looked him in the eye, he gave my hand a comforting squeeze, and brushed his thumb softly along my wrist. I managed a small smile before we were taken to the Justice Building.

 A Peacekeeper led me to a room where I made myself comfortable. It was to be that room where I said goodbye to my loved ones, though I wasn’t sure anyone would turn up. The room was similar to Mayor Golding’s living room, with two purple loveseats and a soft cream carpet. I sat on the floor, my back leaning against the loveseat, and I ran my fingers through the carpet to calm myself down.

 Maybe ten minutes later, my parents arrived. I couldn’t look either of them in the eye. Of course, we had done the same the previous year with Jonah, and he had never come back.

 I stood slowly and embraced them both. My mother felt frail in my arms, as though she might snap at any moment, and I couldn’t remember the last time I had hugged either of them.  I pulled away and put my hands on my father’s shoulders.

 “I’m keeping this short to make it easier. Look after mother. Grieve with the Mayor, and don’t blame him if Logan wins. I’ll be thinking of you.”

 “I’m sorry. For everything,” my father said.

 “I know. Me too. I’ll be okay. I’m going to come home to you.”

 I backed away and turned my back so I didn’t have to look at them. I didn’t want to see the pain on their faces. “You should leave now,” I told them. I heard my mother break down and begin to cry. The most emotion she had shown in a whole year. I couldn’t, wouldn’t look at her. A few moments later and they were out the room, and her wails became distant. I would never see them again, I realised.

 Minutes passed, and I thought my goodbyes were over. I concentrated on my breathing and not crying. I wasn’t expecting to see anyone else, so I was surprised when the door opened again and Eddie Grey walked in…

 I was sixteen years old. Jonah had already passed away, and I felt like the loneliest person on earth. Just to get out the house one Saturday, I went around town offering to run errands. I approached the baker and he asked me to deliver a cake to the Grey family, who had not been to collect their purchase. As a thank you, he gave me a small iced bun. It was burned around the edges and a little stale, but I didn’t care. Having eaten my bun, I arrived at the Grey’s house in high spirits. It was a large house in the Victor’s Village, as Eddie’s auntie is Valeria Grey. I knocked at the door and Eleanor Grey, Eddie’s mother, answered.

 “May I help you?” she asked.

 “Sorry to bother you. I’m Raven Verona, the baker asked me to deliver this cake.”

 “Oh yes!” she cried “I completely forgot! You see, our Edward is having a family meal tonight. It’s his birthday.”

 “Oh. Please wish him a happy birthday from me…” I said turning to leave.

 “You can do it yourself, come on in.”

 “Oh…I really shouldn’t, I have to-”

 “Nonsense! Whatever it is, it can wait. Come in, come in…” Eleanor ushered, and I had no choice but to follow her into the house. She beckoned me and I followed her into the kitchen. Sat at the table, reading a book on Panem History was Eddie. His brown hair was ruffled, and I could see the freckles on his nose. He looked…good. Looks aren’t everything I thought to myself, giving myself a mental slap. I hadn’t forgotten how he left me at the fence to face the consequences of his actions.

 He was, no doubt, surprised to see me. His eyebrows arched high on his forehead, and he looked as though he couldn’t believe his eyes.

 “Happy Birthday,” I muttered. Eddie gawped at me, his mouth open.

 “Well, say hello, Edward,” Eleanor said in her posh, fruity voice. Then she lowered her voice to a loud whisper “This is the girl you always talk about, isn’t it? The one you like…”

 “Mother…”

 “She is exactly as you described her. Such a pretty girl. Isn’t she the one who got whipped a few years-”

 “Mother!” Eddie said sharply. Eleanor looked at me as though she had forgotten my presence.

 “Make yourself at home, Raven. Edward will make you some tea, won’t you?”

 “Yes mother,” Eddie grumbled. Eleanor gave me a little wave and then disappeared upstairs. Eddie, meanwhile, was making a huge show of making the tea, running the water as fast as possible into the little tin kettle and clanging teacups unnecessarily. I sat down on the edge of a chair nervously and peered at Eddie’s book.

 “So…you’re interested in history?” I asked him. Eddie almost dropped the kettle in surprise and scalded himself on some hot water. He gasped and ran his burning hand under the cold water.

 “Are you okay?” I said.

 “Uhh…yes. And…uhh…yes. I do like history. I…I would love to study it further. Do some research of my own.” He paused for a moment. “That’s why…that night, at the fence. I planned to run away. Go to other districts to try and find out more. Maybe get to 13.”

 I was puzzled “Why 13? It’s been destroyed.”

 “Exactly. I would have some peace to explore it, with no one there. No one knows exactly what happened in 13. I could find out, do some investigation, you know?”

 I smiled at him. He was so different when he was alone. It seemed he’d matured a lot since we last spoke, and I liked him. And now that he was beginning to relax he was opening up to me, about things I don’t think he had ever spoken of before. He beamed back, and handed me a cup of tea. He ran a hand through his hair as he sat down.

 “So…what are you interested in?”

 I thought for a moment, sipping the hot sweet tea “I like to play piano. The Mayor teaches me. The first song he taught me was to play at my brother’s memorial. He often lets me play his piano while my father is in meetings.”

 “Would you…play for me? My mother has a piano.”

 I was surprised. And even more surprised at myself when I agreed. Eddie led me through a couple of rooms, and I couldn’t help admiring the beauty of the house. We reached a sort of living room which held the piano. It was slightly battered, but beautiful none the less. It was made of a shiny brown wood, sort of a chestnut colour, and there was a stool with a velvet cover. I sat down, stretched my fingers and began to play.

 

The tide has come into the bay

Today is a brand new day

The sun will rise, as will it fall

And from the heavens you shall call

 

Above the stars, above the sky,

The angels can hear your cry,

Go into their loving, warm embrace,

I’ll meet you at the special place

 

We shall meet again,

After the storm, after the rain,

One day, our souls will mend,

For this is what God intends

 

Above the stars, above the sky,

The angels can hear your cry,

Go into their loving, warm embrace,

I’ll meet you at our special place

 

 I didn’t realise I was crying until I finished the song. I wiped away the tears quickly.

 “That’s the song I played at my brother’s memorial,” I told Eddie. “It was the first song I ever learned.”

 Eddie put an arm around me and I cried for Jonah, for anyone who had ever been victim of the Hunger Games. I wiped my eyes furiously and stood up.

 “I have to go,” I said firmly. I didn’t wait to be shown out, just ran out the entrance and across the square until I got home. Then I threw myself on my bed and cried until I couldn’t cry any more. I didn’t speak to Eddie again. Until…

 

 Eddie stood at the door, looking unsure what to say or do.

 “Come in,” I said, forcing a weak smile and patting the floor beside me. He sat down and pulled me into a hug. It was all I could do not to cry as I hugged him back. I broke away and there were tears on his face.

 “I can’t let you go without telling you how I feel,” he whispered. I couldn’t say a word, even though I guessed what he was about to say “I love you, Raven. Please try to win. Come home to me. We’ve wasted so much time.”

 “Eddie…” I began, but before I could continue, he grabbed my face and kissed me. I didn’t have the guts to break away.

 “I’m sorry Raven. I should have volunteered. Then I could have been with you at the end.” I didn’t know what to say, so I just leaned against his chest and let him stroke my hair. I saw no point in telling him I didn’t love him back, that I didn’t love anyone. I’d never see him again, after all.

 “Maybe…maybe I will come home. I might win,” I said. Eddie kissed the corner of my mouth.

 “I hope so.”

 After a minute or so, he pressed a small ring into my palm. It must have been from the Capitol, as it was made of gold, which is very rare in District 10. It had an intricate pattern on it, and I gazed at it in awe.

 “Will you wear it as a District token?”

 I nodded, and was about to slide it on to my finger, but he stopped me.

 “Wait.” He took the ring back and held it out to me. I thought he was just acting odd, then I realised what he was doing.

 “If you return…will you marry me?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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