"Louis, that reaping bowl doesn't look that friendly..." says Bonnie fearfully, distress scripted sharply just beneath her worrisome forehead creases. By this time, all the teenagers should be in their categories. I shouldn't be worrying Bonnie with this but something feels a tad off. Like the atmosphere is playing a different melody than what it's supposed to be following. I feel the off course vibe creep it's way towards me as it tears and shreds me from my steadiness. I dismiss it and place a sturdy palm on her ashen, feeble shoulder.
"Try to imagine the amazing ice cream I'm getting you afterwards, Strawberry. When Effie doesn't pick you." I encourage my stiff, chattering, sibling. The jittery flits in her set of sorrel eyes makes me realize the average 12 year old girl 100 years ago wouldn't have the stable haze of the wretched Hunger Games. They would be starting to take their baby steps toward their adultery and creating monumental memories and maybe even taking part in something like "cheer leading". Which was apparently a girl oriented activity to hurrah a sport team, as my old History teacher described it.
"Let Dad guide you, Straw." I embolden her as she reluctantly urges herself towards her age cluster.
The promising dimples that hollow longingly into her rubicund cheeks assure me that she's stable. The vexing teenagers that flinch at every voice clutter and rub against me as I step inside the restricting 16 year old zone.
Then it happens again.
Bitter, heightened, more deleterious. So much that my eyes dilate to the impetus of it. Or him. My vision contracts to a bush of hair too ghostly and eerie to be called white. inflated lips, one's of a distraught puffer fish. His plump body rests nonchalantly on the worn balcony above the Justice Building. The blood thirsty snake who murdered my father. President Snow.
I am ten thousand miles adrift from the Justice Building.
His immoral inscripted pupils spits venom right into mine. I don't even acknowledge his company. No, he doesn't deserve that luxury.
"Vindictiveness. Disposed to seek revenge; revengeful. Marked by or resulting from a desire to hurt; spiteful."
And with that, His legs guide him into the depths of the Justice Building, bringing that abhorrent feeling with him.
The incoherent buzz of my surroundings whir back into ear shot. The ornamental Reaper I believe is Effie is already hurtling her curious, ablomb, fingers in the female bowl. I was zoned out for that long? My gentian irises stumble over Bonnie. Who's incandescent shoulders are still positioned valiantly. Now I see Dad instead of her. With content orbs that could compose an ocean. Straw is the only shred I have of him now. There appearances were intensely similar. Some of our recent customers would describe them as closely bonded siblings instead of father and daughter. Bonnie. The last ornament of him. I do not and will not plan on letting her go.
"Well, it seems we...We are having some difficulty with the names. " Effie utters haltingly. Her tone oozing with turbulence. She scatters over to the situated Gamemakers. Bonnie's spindly lengths of fallen hair waver with fretful sways. She always shakes before she cries. I trie to mouth a "you're okay" to her but a raspy, virile, voice intercepts me.
"There has been interference with the slips. Two children have been taped together. May Adalaide Velvora and Bonnie Tomlinson please step up?" A lanky gamemaker beckons my sister and a teenager with stramineous hair and eyes a similar shade to mine. I'm paralyzed.
They both advance to the stage in unison. Bonnie's eyes struggle to pry aid out of mine. But again, I'm paralyzed, restricted from the crisis. Two names were taped together.
I don't hear anything. All I'm allowed is sight. Effie depresses the most important slips of my life into a seperate bowl. Two names were taped together.
It's all just smudging together. Effie tears a slip out as soon as it skims the core of the bowl. From looks of Adalaide's awed stance, I come to the terms that Efffie reaped her. Two names were taped together.
It does not assume me in the slightest when I'm called for the male tribute. It's all clicking together now. Two names were taped together, I was reaped, this was Snow's doing, and my sister is dead.