The second guard didn't question the other, just continued down the hall to Bob's room.
Bob sat stiffly with a perfect smile on his face. He sat beside his perfect little sister, who was sitting stiffly as well. They were having a perfect little conversation as if nothing was going to happen, as if Bob wasn't about to be put in a cage to battle twenty-three other people to death.
"Uhrm, times up," said the guard. The girl nodded, still smiling, and walked out. A mother walked in and did the same thing as the sister. Then the father came in, then the brother, all behaving the same way.
The guard walked out after all of the family had left and walked to through the hall. Suddenly, Kyli Schipper ran out of her room.
"She's gonna kill me! She's gonna kill me!" she yelled hysterically. She grabbed the guard's jacket. Three guards ran up to her and pulled her away.
The guard coughed and walked into the next room, where Cassiopeia Sullivan stood with her father, staring into his teary blue-green eyes.
"Dad, Dad, I'l be alright. I will, you know how tough I am," she said.
Her father sighed. "Yeah, you do take after me." There was a pause. "Promise me you'll try to win."
Cassie smiled. "I promise."
Her father sighed again. "No, I mean...don't ally with anyone. Don't trust anyone. Act like a lady, kill like a man. Run, run, run. Kill, kill, kill. Spare no one. If you kill someone, take anything valuable from the body. Be ruthless. Get all the weapons you possibly can. Make people like you, but fear you."
Cassie gasped inside. Was her father really like this?
Her father looked at her. "Have you gotten your keepsake yet?"
Cassie's hand went in her pocket. She felt the small piece of cloth in her pocket. It was given to her by her lover just before this. "Yes, sir," she said.
The father looked disappointed.
"TIME UP!" called the guard. The father walked out.
The guard almost went into Rosemary Everdeen's door, but he realized that there was a note on the door. "UNSTABLE TRIBUTE" it read. The guard was perplexed, but he walked to the next door.
Ayla Brooklyn sat in the floor, braiding a small girl's hair. She sat behind the girl because she didn't want her to see her cry. Ayla tried to talk without her voice quivering.
"Beth, take care of Harriet for me," she said.
The girl- Ayla's sister, Beth- laughed. "But why do I have to take care of your rabbit?"
"Wait, so you want to take care of Terrence my cow, too?"
Beth laughed again. Her laugh was so angelic, light, soft.
They started talking and laughing, Ayla crying silently behind Beth.
"Alright, time up!" said the guard.
Beth stood up and spun around to give her sister a hug. She looked at her sister's face and realized that she was crying. Beth gasped. Her sister never cried.
Ayla sighed and kissed her sister goodbye. "I love you," she whispered as Beth walked out the door.
The guard eyed Ayla suspiciously, but shut the door and walked to the next room, which held Jacie XP.
"Jacie," said a girl,"you know how you said you hated me the first time you met me?"
"Well, I hate you, too," said the girl, Jacie's cousin who had been adopted and raised as her sister, said.
Jacie jerked her head towards the girl. "What the smeh, Tara?!"
"But anyway, I want to say goodbye, and Mom and Dad are thinking of you, they just couldn't find the time to get here."
The girl walked out the door, and it was only two minutes and fifteen seconds into the meeting time. The guard caught her. "Miss, you still have-"
"I don't need more time, thank you," she said. The guard shrugged and moved on. The next room was the one that held Jamie Lockwood.
There was a large woman in the middle of the room on her knees, weeping. "My son, my son, going to die...," she said over and over through her tears.
Jamie sighed and put his hand on his mother's back. "Momma, I'll live. I swear, I'll live. At least I'll try."
The woman kept crying. Finally, the time was up, and a tall, skinny man walked in.
"I know. You want to apologize for everything you did, but I should be sorry for what I did. I-"
"It's not your fault that you broke all but three of your ribs and had to get your leg replaced."
"But it is. I shouldn't have been drinking that day. I shouldn't've went into the building. And I shouldn't've tried to kill myself by jumping off of a building. I should've been brave and faced what was happening. But...it was too hard..."
The father started crying, which wasn't right. Men don't cry, men don't cry, thought Jamie. Yet here was his crying father.
"I know, Dad. I know. You have to be strong now. Be the man I know you are. To know you will be tough will make me tough." Jamie blinked hard and looked at his father. "I love you, Dad."
The father looked back at Jamie. "I love you, too-"
"Time up!" said the guard. The father straightened up and tried to stop crying as he walked out the door, the guard right behind him.
Hercules James was in the next room, smiling at a weird mouse.
"Urm, Mr. James, you aren't-"
"This is my brother. Say hello, Brother."
"Mr. James, put down your, erm, brother."
Hercules kissed the rat and it ran out of the room. "Weirdo," muttered the guard under his breath, and he walked to the next room to Keila Arias.
She sat with her grandmother.
"Gran," said Keila. "You've always said that, when you're gone, you are going to give me everything you own. Now, I say that, when I'm gone, I'll give you everything I own. I will stay with you every step of the rest of your life then, too."
The old grandmother let a tear roll down her cheek. "You will not be forgotten, dear."
Keila threw her arms around her grandmother and enveloped her in a giant hug.
The guard looked at the clock. "Time up!"
The grandmother kissed her granddaughter and walked out of the door, and the guard walked into Genevive Phalla's room.
Her mother- Effie's sister- sat with her. "Gene, you've worked so hard to keep the family together, to keep us alive. Now you should do that for yourself."
Genevive sighed. "Mom, do you think that I could really win?"
The mother sighed. No, she thought, no she can't. But she smiled. "Of course," she lied.
Genevive looked her mother in the eyes. She knew that she was lying, and that, even though she loved her, she knew that Genevive would die.
"Time is UP!" said the guard. He walked into Joely Bell's room, where she stood with a small girl on her back, giving her piggy back rides and laughing.
Finally, Joely sat the girl down, still breathless from laughing.
The girl suddenly went serious. "Jo, what did you think when you were picked?"
Joely sighed. "Pi, I was just as confused as you. How my name got in the bowl, I don't know, but somehow it did."
Pi smiled. "I wish I could be with you."
No, you don't. You'd be murdered in three seconds. "But, Pi! You'd eat all of the food in the Capitol before anyone can say, 'Eat!'!"
The guard clapped his hands. "Time up!" Pi gave Joely a quick hug and ran out of the door, and the guard walked into Feather Albany's room. Feather, although she was usually tough, was crying.
Finnick O'Dair was in the room with her, looking her in the eyes. "Hey, hey, Feather, Feather. We've been training for this. Remember everything?"
Feather nodded. "Go straight for the things that I can use every time."
Finnick smiled. "Yep. Now, then, stay strong. Paint a picture of you being perfect, elite, and agile. Don't lie, but don't always tell the truth. Dry your tears. Contain yourself. Remember, allies can be helpful, but help them. Don't kill them unless you absolutely have no choice."
Feather nodded again.
"Good. I should be off. I don't want to raise suspicion because I used all five minutes. Goodbye, and good luck," said Finnick. He kissed Feather on the cheek.
As he left, Feather called out. "Wait!"
Finnick turned around and walked back to her. "What is it?"
"I-I want to thank you. For everything. For caring. For...loving me like a brother. Thank you," said Feather.
Finnick smiled. "No, thank you for listening."
"Time's up!" called the guard. Finnick jerked his head around and looked at the guard, then back at Feather. He gave Feather another kiss on the cheek, and walked out the door, hesitating a bit before leaving. The guard followed Finnick to the next door that held Skylar Black.
Skylar stood by his best friend, just staring. Harris had always been there for him, but Skylar knew that he wouldn't be there for this. He wouldn't cry, though. He was trying to be a man.
"Harris," Skylar said, breaking the silence,"you've been like family to me. You've always been there. I...you are the best friend anyone could ever ask for."
"Thanks, bro," said Harris.
"Harris, when you go, please tell Mom and Dad and my siblings that I love them. Tell them that I'll miss them and be thinking of them every second of every day," Skylar said.
"Can do," said Harris.
"Can we do a man-hug?"
Skylar wrapped his arms around Harris.
"Time is...up!" said the guard before walking to the next room.
Aidan Blossom sat, smiling at Melissa Bullock, his girlfriend who was crying rivers.
"Mel, I will try. No, scratch that. I will win. For you. I promise," he said.
Melissa smiled. "But what happened to our future?"
"I think that...our...future...is in the past. But I love you, and if I die, I will still love you. I may be your boyfriend, but if I die, you are not going to cry, because you know that I love you and that I will always love you." He leaned in and put his lips on hers.
Melissa pulled back and wiped her eyes. "I love you, too."
They kissed again.
"Time is uupp!" said the guard. He strutted to Scarlet Greenwood's room.
"What's up, Scarlet?" he said as he sat down.
Scarlet looked at the guard. "Marquis, I am about to die, that's what."
"Oh, come on, Sis, you could win," said Marquis.
"No, no I can't. You saw District One's male tribute, and District Eleven's male! I don't stand a chance."
"Not with that state of mind! Okay, I'm out of here. Love you, Sis." Marquis hugged Scarlet then walked to the next room.
There sat Alexis Makari with a photograph.
"Miss Makari, any guests?" Marquis the guard asked.
Alexis quickly sat down the photo, like she had been caught doing something that she wasn't supposed to be doing. "No, urm," she said and gulped, "none at at all."
Marquis nodded and walked to the last tribute's room- Zephyr Crimm.
His little sister Rosemary sat beside him, crying with her head on his shoulder. "Z, I love you. I love you, and you're gonna die. And then I'll love no one...," she said, over and over.
Zephyr just patted her on her shoulder and kissed her on her forehead.
"Time is up!" said Marquis.
Logan walked in, but stepped out immediately, or rather, was yanked out immediately. He was pinned to the ground by one of the other guards, his hands put behind his back.
"I'm sorry, Mr. Crimm, but your friend will not be able to visit," said the guard.
"Why?" said Zephyr.
The guard growled. "None of your business."
Marquis nodded, then shut the door, leaving Zephyr to wonder.
Finally, the meetings were over.