I wake to the sound of screaming. I jump up and see Finnick running towards the sound. Three, red figures stand on the beach.
"Who are they?" I ask cautiously, my arms encircling my middle.
One of them makes a sound of frustration and drags the other two behind her.
"Johanna!" Finnick cries, running after them.
Haymitch and I exchange a confused look.
When they arrive, I learn that another section of the arena specialises in rain. Blood rain; that's why they appear to have been dipped in paint. Beetee is unconscious from loss of blood from a gash on his arm. We help to clean Wiress off, but she is evidently in shock. She keeps looking around nervously, for some unseen threat and murmuring "Tick tock." I don't have a clue what she means, but I just nod at her and go along with it.
Later, when we are sitting on the beach, I suddenly make the connection; the fog in one section, blood rain in another, the monkeys and the tidal wave! It all makes sense: each segment is an hour and the arena is a clock. "Wiress, you're a genius!" I exclaim, and proceed to explain my epiphany.
That night, Johanna and I are taking the first watch and we sit with our backs to each other. "How'd you lose Mags?" she asks, suddenly.
"In the fog," I say, almost guiltily, "Finnick had her and Haymitch got the worst of the poison. He couldn't carry us both, so she kissed him and walked right into the poison."
"She was Finnick's mentor, you know," she glares at me accusingly.
"No, I didn't know that." "So," I ask, "what were you doing with nuts and volts?"
"I got them out for you." She says regretfully, "You wanted them as allies, right?"
Not really, I think, but I nod my head.
"Thanks," I say.
She glowers at me in return. As we sit there, I feel a sudden, sharp pain in my lower abdomen. I lean forwards, my hands clenched into fists and pressed against my abdomen. Johanna glances at me and sees my expression.
"What's wrong?" she asks.
"Nothing," I breathe. The pain is passing and I sit back again, rubbing my bump.
She turns away and resumes ignoring my existence.
The next morning, I wake up early next to Haymitch, who is still snoring. I feel a wave of nausea come over me and run to the jungle to throw up. Annoyed, I wipe my mouth. I thought the morning sickness had stopped now. I stumble back to camp, feeling even dizzier and light-headed than before. I reach the edge of the trees before I begin to sway.
"Katniss?" asks Finnick. The last thing I see is him and Haymitch running over to me as I collapse.
I wake, under the canopy of vines Finnick made. Haymitch is sitting beside me. I sit up and look at him. My abdomen feels tender and sore, like when I'm on my period. My lower back aches and my head is throbbing. "Are you alright, Katniss?" Haymitch asks.
"I'll be fine." I sit up, painfully and he helps me to stand. We walk back to the beach, where Finnick and Johanna are sitting. Exhausted, despite my long rest, I sit down a few metres away.
"You are alive then?" snarls Johanna. "I don't know why I bothered getting Nuts and Volts for you. You're weak and a waste of space."
Too tired to stick up for myself, I stand up. The pain in my lower back intensifies and I groan.
"Sweetheart?" Haymitch asks and gets up to follow me.
I ignore both him and the increasing pain and start to walk over to the trees.
Suddenly, nausea wells in my chest, alongside a crippling pain in my lower abdomen. I gasp and double over., clutching a tree for support. Haymitch leaps up. "What's wrong?" he demands. I'm in so much pain, I can barely speak. "Something's wrong," I manage. "The baby." Another cramp, stronger than the last, hits me and I fall to my knees. He picks me up and runs to the grass hut. Tears stream down my face with the force of the pain and, somehow, doesn't go away or even decrease in intensity.
Thirty minutes go by, then an hour. Haymitch squeezes my hand and tries to get me to drink. I take a sip of the lukewarm water and vomit almost instantly.
"This isn't right," He says. I can't hold myself up any longer and fall back onto the sand, lying on my side facing the open side of the hut. The cramp subsides, but the horrible aching still radiates from my back all the way down to my upper thighs. My hands drop to my sides, to cradle my abdomen, and my fingertips brush the ground. I feel wetness and lift up my hand. My fingers come away dark and sticky. "Haymitch!" I call, sheer pain making my words almost inaudible.
He runs in from going to get Finnick to help him and his eyes widen when he sees the blood all over my thighs. The crotch of my jumpsuit is saturated with blood. Finnick and Johanna come in, confused expressions on their faces. Finnick's eyes widen is shock and worry when he sees me.
"Get out," I gasp, wishing I could pass out again to escape the pain. I whimper and double over, biting my lip so hard it begins to bleed. Haymitch rubs my back and shares a fearful look with Finnick.
"Katniss," Finnick whispers, "Is it the baby?"
Haymitch nods grimly and Johanna comes over and crouches beside me.
"Can you get a bowl of water and some more of that moss?" she asks the others, surprising me. Kneeling down next to me, she pushes my hair, stuck with sweat, out of my eyes and helps me to sit against the tree supporting the woven hut. I look down at the sand and see that I'm bleeding heavily. Everything sounds strangely distant and overly loud. I can't get my eyes to focus properly and I feel dizzy and light-headed from loss of blood.
Finnick and Haymitch return and pass the things to Johanna. She motions for them to go out and they do, reluctantly. She covers me with a plastic sheet and helps me to peel off my soaked clothes. She cleans off the blood and puts some of the absorbent moss under me to soak up the blood.
Shivering and vulnerable I look at her. "Why are you doing this?" Another pain rips across my stomach before she can answer. It's so strong this time that I can barely catch my breath. I am trying not to cry out, because that would reveal our whereabouts, but a moan escapes me as my body tries to reject the pain.
"It's getting worse." I force out. I can feel that I'm still bleeding heavily and I am feeling more and more faint. She frowns and pulls the plastic sheet back slightly, to reveal that my blood has soaked through the moss again.
Johanna is sitting beside me and Finnick is standing by the wall - I didn't notice him come in. He has something in his hand. I think it's a parachute. He passes it to Johanna and leaves.
"Something for the pain," She reads aloud from the slip of paper. I feel a needle in my arm and within minutes, the cramping is gone, but the ache remains. I lose my weak grip on reality and black out.