Hunger Games Book 1

Meet Kayde Mason, sister of Johanna, and soon to be contestant in the 74th annual Hunger Games, Kayde is a clever, athletic, and cunning 14 year old girl living in District 7. You'll be in on all the action through the reaping, game prepping, and survival.

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1. Reaping Day

I sit outside anticipating my sister's arrival for the reaping. Being the victor's sister doesn't come to any advantage in District 7. You would think that I would be living in the victor's village where all the other fortunate families are with their winning son or daughter. In my case there's too much work to do and not enough people to do it. So, me being the youngest in my family and being most experienced with the relentless work I've toiled with for 3 years, makes me in charge of any extensive work. Most of us already have been working since an early age instead of going to school. It's no different than it was before Johanna won the Hunger Games. I've been living with Rame, my only friend in town, for years now and I didn't plan on leaving him either when Johanna came home alive after the Games. We both help with the lumber but also clothing, weaponry, and occasionally transportation of imported goods. His mom and I are really close and it's more important for me to stay with them for a while and help my town.

Finally I see Johanna leaving the victor's village with Blight and my brother Aaron. "Where have you guys been their going to call for us any minute to join everyone for the reaping," I explain. "While you were sitting around waiting for us, we were busy finding Share and Dairus," Johanna said. Share and Darius are my brother and sister. Share is never on time for anything which she gets from Dairus who is only a year older than me. Dairus and Share have already forgotten that either of them could easily be picked for the Hunger Games. Like the rest of my family, they've had it easy for a while and are oblivious to any issues in the town. We've had food shortages and incidents with the Capitol that Rame and I dealt with the week after Johanna won. They've had no trouble relaxing since they've moved into the victor's village. "We need to get there early before the Peacekeepers come over," Blight suggests. "No one wants to be "escorted" by any of the Peacekeepers so we'll be right on time with everyone else," Johanna adds. I've been through two reapings my whole life and there isn't a word to describe the feeling that comes over you, those minutes they pick the next victims for the Hunger Games. I've never been close with any of the other kids my age in my town but just like the everyone else, it's hard to watch.

We find Rame and his sister who's best friends with Johanna. Phoebe is 17 and isn't close to Rame or me in any way. I've spoken to her before but she's never been interested in anything I've had to say unless it had something to do with her. Even before the reaping not many words are spoken between anyone. We all wait for the introduction and during that time all I can think of is my family and Rame and what the odds may be that someone close to me could be picked. The thought of my name being drawn has never slipped out of my mind though. I've been living just like everyone else and I have had to put my name in a dozen times for food for myself and Rame and his family. I don't want any chance of him or his sister being picked. My only friend being chosen to fight to the death with people in an arena where anything could happen would be, mentally, the hardest thing I would ever experience besides when Johanna was picked. We all knew she had a spark in her that would help her win.

As we all wait in silence for our escort Freema to approach the stand I look at Rame and all my other siblings. I can only think of how much I care about each any everyone of them. I don't really remember much of what happened during that time. All I know is she was the only one talking and she went on for along time. It kinda felt like she was stalling us for what was to come. What caught my attention was her heels clomping over towards the large bowl where all the names were. "As always, ladies first..." Freema sighs. As she picks the name I can see around me all the other girls around me breathing heavier. There was a pause and in that instant you can almost hear the heart beat of the people surrounding you. Freema taps on the microphone and clears her throat. "District 7's female tribute is...."

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