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1. Nightmares

Katniss was in danger. She had been chosen for the Hunger Games. She was being chased. It was a young man. He was huge. There was another tribute behind her. She had dark hair and appeared to be with the boy. She was yelling at him to get out of the way so she had a clear shot. So she had a clear shot at Katniss. I tossed and turned in my sleep as the girl threw a knife. It was only an inch from her head when I woke up. I went to go and get into bed with Katniss but then, she wasn’t there. That’s when I realised that this was her reality. Our reality.

Buttercup was out like most nights now but I could see Lady in the garden. I couldn’t sleep again. Too many nightmares. I went downstairs and looked in the cupboards. I wouldn’t have slept anymore tonight so I might as well have done something useful. I revised the herbs and techniques that my mother was teaching me. When Katniss went away, I finally had to grow up. I needed to help my mother just like Katniss did before she was taken to the Capitol. She used to provide for us. She’d hunt and trade and keep us safe. When she left, she told me to be strong and that I could always sell Lady’s milk. She told my mother to stay strong too, and to make sure she didn’t break down again, just like when my father… just like when my father died.

In truth, she did break down again. That’s when I finally grew up. I knew that she couldn’t look after me anymore. She was terrified that she’d lose Katniss too. Thankfully, she survived but President Snow is not happy with her. She didn’t do what she was told because she refused to let Peeta die.  I feel that it may be my fault. If Katniss had not volunteered then I would have gone to the Capitol. I wonder if I would have survived. It is unlikely. I would’ve ended up just like Rue. I would have been killed mercilessly by someone much older but I wouldn’t have been surrounded in flowers and sung to whilst I slipped off. I would have been used to create those horrible mutts. Those horrible mutts that shredded that boy to pieces. The one that my dear sister put out of his misery so he didn’t have to die the way the Capitol wanted him to. She was kind. He would’ve enjoyed watching her die. He’d finally gone mad and it was the Capitols’ fault.

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