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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13. Thirteen

 I was rather rudely awakened with a “good natured” slap from Drew. That’s what he called it anyway.

 “Come on, Raven. Get up, you’re not even supposed to be here. I didn’t slap you that hard anyway,” he said, when I gave him my best glare “Besides, you’re going into the arena in a few days. Get used to it.”

 I grumbled a couple of the worst insults I could think of before heading for the door.

 “Raven! Wait.”

 I turned to look at Drew, my eyes drooping from lack of sleep.

 “I owe you.”

 “I’ll remember that. See you in a bit.”

 I headed back to my room bleary eyed, trying to erase the constant tiredness that had become so familiar to me. Clothes had already been left out for me, brown cotton pants that hung loose on my hips and a beige t-shirt. As I pulled them on, I wondered if the blonde Avox had left them for me. I imagined her creeping into the room, and carefully laying the clothes out for me. It seemed everything she did was done with extreme caution. I wondered again what she could have possibly done to become an Avox.

 I ate a large breakfast to give me some energy, and felt much better having done so. I said very little, especially not to Drew. He was also very quiet, not even bothering to make snide remarks about Eli’s latest attire or intimidate the others in our company. He also seemed to have no appetite, as he wearily poked at a piece of bacon with his fork. I could tell he wasn’t listening to Valeria giving Logan and me advice, and I admit, I wasn’t either.

 “Wake up, Raven! Did you listen to a word I said?” Valeria snapped.

 “Sorry. Can you repeat what you said please?” I asked guiltily. She sighed and rolled her eyes.

 “Fine. For the final time. I suggest you try your hand at everything. Even things you are already good at. You said you were good with knives. Improve. You know how to use a sword, you said. Improve. You don’t know how to use a slingshot? Learn! And don’t forget. You’ll need other skills too. Being able to light a fire or knowing what plants are safe to eat could save your life. It’s important to know a bit of everything. Also, help each other out. You’re team mates. Use each other.”

 “What about other tributes? Should we avoid them?”

 “That’s up to you. You might pick up skills by working with and observing the others. I do, however, advise you to stay away from the Careers. The less they know about you, the better. Especially that boy from District One. He seems to have a hatred for you, Raven.”

 “Yes, I noticed. I bet he can’t wait to kill me.”

 “Yes, well. He is a Career. And you showed him up last night.” She checked her watch “Finish up. Then meet me by the lift. You need to be at the training centre in ten minutes.”

 I quickly shovelled the rest of my food down and headed back to my room to give my teeth a quick scrub. I hardened my features and glared back at myself in the mirror. I was ready.

 Valeria met Logan and I at the lift and gave us a departing hug, which was a little unexpected. It was the most affection she had ever shown us, and as we stepped in the lift, I pointed it out to Logan.

 “She is allowed to care, Raven. Besides, she’s worried about us. You in particular. She desperately wants us both to live, but you especially. Because of Eddie.”

 I thought about it. Valeria had always seemed so confident and uncaring. But what Logan said seemed true. Everyone has feelings, right?

 “Right,” I said distractedly. We had reached the bottom floor, where the training took place. We exited the lifts, and a strange feeling arose in my chest. Partly fear, partly anger, partly power and…partly excitement. Excitement at meeting the people that wanted to kill me. What sort of a person does that make you? I asked myself. A mad one.

 We arrived before most of the others. The beautiful red head was already there, plus several of the weedier looking tributes. The girl from 4, who I had dismissed as competition the night before, was there, and I realised in horror that she was incredibly fit. She obviously had trained back at her district, and muscles bulged under her shirt. She was also very pretty, which I hadn’t noticed when she was dressed in her ridiculous shrimp costume. A curtain of blonde curls sat on her shoulder, and she smirked coldly at me. I guessed if I stood next to her, I would only just reach her shoulders, though I tried not to let it bother me. As someone pinned a number 10 for my district on my back, I could feel the girl examining me, wondering if I was a threat to her. To prove that I certainly was a threat, I made a mental note to join her when she went to the knives workshop.

 We waited around another fifteen minutes until all the tributes had arrived, and then the trainer, Marcus, begins to run over the rules. No attacking other tributes, basically. I was anxious to get started, so when Marcus finally allowed us to begin, I grabbed Logan’s arm and hauled him straight towards the axe workshop. A burly man stood by, waiting to help us if we needed him. Logan shook his head when he saw the array of axes.

 “What is the use of me doing this? How about I learn some skills that don’t involve fighting? Surely that’s more useful to us as a team when I don’t plan on killing anyone.”

 I shrugged, selecting my axe “Fine. I’ll join you a little later.”

 It was more like a lot later. I found myself absorbed in each workshop I visited. I learnt how to uses axes, spears and a slingshot. Just before lunch, I decided I should meet with Logan, but got distracted when I saw the Careers hanging about the knives station. Bracing myself for abuse from them, I put my head high and headed towards them. The boy from 1 noticed me first and smirked.

 “Hey, shorty. Coming to join us?”

 “Yeah, I thought it might be fun.”

 “How about you show us what you can do?”

 I thought back to what Valeria had said. She had warned me not to mix with Careers. But I found myself nodding.

 “Alright.” I glanced at the targets ahead, and pointed at the one furthest from us. “I challenge you.”

 “Me?” he said, obviously surprised.

 “Of course. I wasn’t just going to let you watch me throw some knives. You have to join in on the fun. The best of three. The most accurate wins.”

 He looked at me suspiciously before agreeing to my terms “You’re on. I’ll go easy.”

 “No need. After you. I insist,” I said. He swept the dark hair off his face with a smile, before picking up his first knife. Casually, he stepped up and aimed carefully.

 “So. I never got your name,” he said, squinting his eyes in concentration.

 “Raven,” I said, as his first knife flew and hit the edge of the target. A bad throw. He scowled.

 “I’m Roger. Your turn.”

 The rest of the Careers were whispering to each other, criticising Roger’s dodgy throw. I wasn’t going to allow my throw to go to waste. With ease, I sent the knife through the air, and it lodged in the centre of the target with a satisfying klunk. I smiled sweetly at him.

 “Is knife throwing your best skill, Roger? I’d like to see what your worst is.”

 My jibe earned a snigger from the three Career girls. Roger threw his next knife, this time completely missing.

 “Definitely not,” he muttered “My weapon is a spear. You’ll learn that soon enough.”

 I threw my next knife, a little less accurately than the first time and it landed to the left of my previous one “Oh I will, will I? How exactly?”

 “You’re my prime target, haven’t you figured that by now?” His final shot was decent. Except it hit the wrong target. I spluttered.

 “Wow. I’m honoured to be your…prime target. But to be honest, if your other skills are as bad as your knife throwing…you won’t live long enough to make me a target.”

  I prepared for my last throw, but as I stepped forward to throw it, Roger grabbed my leg hard and pulled. I couldn’t keep my balance, and landed on my face with a thud. An agonizing pain spread throughout my nose and blood spilled onto my lips. All the Careers were laughing by this time, already walking away from me. Angrier than I had ever been before, I picked up the knife I had dropped, got to my feet and hurried after the Careers. Grabbing Roger’s hair, I yanked his head back and pressed the cold blade against his throat. He writhed under my grip.

 “If this was the arena, you’d be dead by now. Okay? So don’t you dare try that trick again,” I breathed in his ear. He was about to fight back, but a Marcus came over to break us up.

 “No fighting,” he growled, shaking us both. I shot Roger my best grin, which probably looked quite ghastly, considering my face was covered in blood.

 “No worries, Marcus. Me and Roger are the best of friends,” I beamed, pulling Roger into a rough hug.

 “I’ll kill you,” he whispered.

 “Not if I kill you first.”

 With that, we parted ways and didn’t speak again.

 

 

 

 

 

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