1. The Reaping
I wake up to a smell of bread baking in the small apartment kitchen. I hear a rustle next to me and glance beside my cot to see my 4 siblings still sleeping, ah reaping day. the only day of the year we have work off. I slide out of my bed and tip toe out of the room. "morning" I nod at my mother as I stand in the doorway. "biscuits and gravy?" she asks me smiling. "sure" I say holding out a chipped plate for my mother to fill. "where is dad?" I ask chowing down. "he's at the factory... they still need some workers you know" my mom says. I nod at my mom's words but I can't help the frown on my face. I never see my dad anymore after my little issue at the factory. my attention turns to the kitchen table, fancy dresses and shirts are piled on the table, and under it lies shoes. "which one is mine?" I ask looking over the dresses. my mom reaches over and picks out a dress of the pile and kicks over shoes. "put them on your cot" she instructs before turning back to her biscuits. I look the dress over, the metallic material is masked with a black veil and the shoes are simple black flats. I smile and drop them on my cot before I turn out the door.
I come back to the apartment later with a shimmery ribbon for are hair. I set it on the table and go change into my dress. The dress is soft on my skin and smells like a garden of flowers, I wonder how many late night shifts this cost mom at the factory. I let mom do my hair in a simple bun, she secures short whisps of my hair back with pins but the pins don't hold them back well enough. I laugh as mom struggles with my hair. "its ok mom its not like im going on stage or anything." I say. mom nods in agreement then lets me attend to myself while she helps my other siblings. Little eve is still to young for the reaping though so she sits on a stool and watches. After my siblings are all ready we all head out to the town square. In the town square a small stage is set up with our justice building behind it. My mother each kisses up on the forehead and assures us we wont be picked before she takes eve's hand and goes to stand with the other anxious mothers. I go to find my age group so the peacekeepers can take a drop of blood. when its my turn I hold out my finger to a lady, she pricks it silently then smudges it on the paper. then she directs me where to stand. I go and stand next to one of the kids my age I knew from the factory. Before long district 2's "crazy capital lady" steps onstage. her name is Veeva Lounce, and seeing her strutting around on stage in her crazy capital fashions is the only time the reaping seems funny. This year her skin is died white and her long fake blue eyelashes look like they've grown a foot. Her hair is tied in many twisted, blue knots, and her dress looks like a garbage bag almost. "welcome everybody! hope you are excited as I am about this years 55TH ANNUAL HUNGER GAMES!" she screeches. I can't help but scoff. only the richest kids from my district are exited about this. the anthem plays, Veeva talks, and soon the projectors are screening a capitol film about the war. I watch as the mayor takes out the boy's bowl of names and places it on a pedestal. Next he places the girl's bowl of names out of a pedestal. I'm immediately shocked. there is only one name in the girl's bowl.
The screening comes to an end and Veeva clears her throat. "Now it is time to chose the 2 lucky reps of district 2!" I hear a couple people murmur and point to the girl's bowl. "due to a crime unmentionable there has been a spare of death which has led to a sacrifice instead. after talking it over with the president this has been concluded as a fair punishment as well!" Veeva says while turning to the girl's bowl. she reaches her bony hand in and i'm suddenly being stared down by numerous people. I don't understand until a second before Veeva calls out the name... "WHISP RIVENDELL" she says struggling to read the tiny print on the paper. i'm frozen. this is what the peacemaker wanted after all. and now the whole country wants me to die. and the capital will make sure of that. but maybe I can survive. maybe I can make it back home. I do not cry, but I do not smile, I do not run, but instead I walk towards the stage. I already know for one that tough people win the hunger games, not people who cry and run away. as I walk towards the stage 2 peacemakers take my arm forcing me forward. I break my arms free off there grasp and elbow one in the ribs. As I climb onto the stage it takes all my strength not to cry as I see Eve thrashing around and screaming for me. Veeva draws the boys name next. I guess where supposed to be a kind of automatic allie. "MASON FRENGER" Veeva screeches out. I see a boy about my age with brown curly hair walk out of the crowd. I hear a mother start to weep in the background. I don't look at him until Veeva screeches at us to shake hands. I shake Mason's hand coldly then before I know it I am ushered into the Justice building behind us.
I wait in the buildings study, waiting for the last time I get to hug my family. It seems like hours before they burst through the door. The first thing I they do is burst into tears, but I am still in shock mode so I just stand there as they beg me to stay alive. The easiest I can manage is to say "I'll try." then I realized something's missing, my dad. he has no clue what has happened and he probably won't until much much later. that's when I start crying. We all huddle together as long as we can. Then the peacekeeper comes in and demands my family to leave. But words cannot move us so other peacemakers have to come in to break us apart. I scream for them as one by one they are dragged out. Eve is the last person to leave, as the peacemaker carries her out she tosses leather bracelet to me. "Stay!" she begs one last time before the wooden doors close leaving only me inside the room. I pick up the bracelet and slip it on. its a simple leather braid and it would look like junk to any other person, but to me its too special to lose. so I silently vow to not take it off until i'm safe back home with my family. And before I can count to 10 i'm being ushered onto a train to take me to the capital with a teary eyed Mason.