What the Hell, Guys?
Written for Starvation Monthly Writing Challenge
Prompt: What don't you understand? I won.
WOOT for getting second place last month in Starvation! I've interpreted this prompt in a bit of a different way, cus I NEEDED to write this. So you can add a "should've" before one if that makes more sense to you. Rated T for language (The most I've used). Enjoy!
"There was a guy like that a few years ago from District 6 called Titus. He went completely savage and the Gamemakers had to have him stunned with electric guns to collect the bodies of the players he'd killed before he ate them."
- The Hunger Games, 143
The story of Titus, the man who should've won the 70th Hunger Games.
To be frank, I don't really get why the hell what I did was such a big deal.
I mean, come on! Hello people, these are the Hunger Games! Not the "Let's play nice and not kill each other!" Games. I was just being smart - sensible. And yet they had to go and fuck my life up. Not cool.
Anyways, it's simple logic: Hunger is to eating as Games is to winning. And winning means eliminating the competition.
It was only smart to do them both at the same time. Saved me the trouble of bitchin' about what to eat.
But the Capitol had to open their little plastic mouths and quibble about it. "But cannibalism is immoral." "Eating other people is gross!" "God, that Titus kid must be really screwed up, I hope someone kills him."
News Flash, jerks: The Hunger Games is immoral. If you want something that'll make your stomachs sick and leave you thinking "How could anyone do this?", all us Districts have to do is flip on our T.V.. Why do you think I became a cannibal? For my own enjoyment? Because human flesh tastes like chicken?
No. I did it because of you.
Admittedly, it wasn't only the Capitol's fault. I'll admit that it was also kind of because of a crush. Yeah, eating people for love. Really special, ain't it?
But seriously, that bitch of a District partner Celia is the real reason I didn't win. She had told me that we needed "tactics." That we needed to shine. Ugh, even thinking about her now makes me sick. But she's all the way back in District 6, wearing my crown and living in my house, and there ain't a shit I can do about it. Bet the bitch thinks she's real special, outsmarting me.
It had started on the day before the Games: we were eating dinner with the escorts, and she kept shooting me all these weird glances. Batting her eyelashes as if she had a bug in her eye or something. Even showed a bit of cleav', though I'm not sure if that was intentional.
I ignored her, but (of course) that stupid and very male part of my mind couldn't help but look back, thinking about her. How she looked real fine. How I would sell my soul to get my hands on her.
Yeah, I was a dick. No need to remind me.
But Celia was bad news, even back in Six - one of those pretty little Town pansies who liked to fool around and put her hands where they didn't belong. And that wasn't half of it - she was one of the elite kids who had the mentality and drive of a Career. Long days of hard training had made her strong and able to easily handle weapons. Her mind was as sharp as a tack. She was a threat. I knew I would have to deal with her sooner or later - preferably sooner.
But real trouble didn't start until after dinner - when I was back out on the fenced-in balcony, looking up at the stars and thinking about how I would give anything to be back in District 6 - slumming it with my odd twenty-something brothers and sisters and just barely getting by. Anything was better than death.
"Thinking about me?" A soft, seductive voice came from the doorway, and I spun around to see Celia, wearing nothing but her bathrobe. Her hair was wet, yet still a pretty blonde and falling in gentle waves.
"Why the Hell would I be doing that?" But then I caught on. She was doing something I had always seen, but never experienced first hand - flirting. Back in Six, I was uglier than a brick and didn't get a second glance. But I guess Celia didn't have a lot of options here.
She gave me a smirk. "You're strong, aren't you?" she asked.
Being the eloquent male I was, I managed to get out a choked, "Uh, maybe?"
I had a feeling that she wanted to role her eyes, but the bitch only smiled wider, revealing those blasted perfect teeth that only the rich brats down in Town had. Perfect teeth. Money teeth.
"We should team up," she purred, leaning on the banister and looking at me with those wide blue eyes. "We'd be great together." She turned around, a perfect spin on her bare feet. "But I'm going to bed now. I want you to think about that, okay Titus?" She looked over her shoulder at me.
My mind only registered the words "bed" and "together," but I nodded anyways.
Later, while in my bed in the early hours of the morning, I still couldn't fall asleep. Sure, there was the whole worrying about dying thing. But I also couldn't get Celia's offer out of my brain. She wanted me. Me! And maybe not in that sense - it's highly doubtful, seeing as what that sneaky bitch did to me - but it still felt nice at the time.
I had wanted to see her. To tell her yes to the alliance, and hope that I could pick up a base or two along the way.
But Celia wasn't that type of girl. Sure, she played helpless ditz and loose whore when need be. But as I figured out later, she was anything but.
That breakfast before the Games, we met up. She looked delighted by my answer, but not at all surprised.
"I knew you'd join me," she said, grinning. "You're a smart boy."
I wanted to protest that I was not a "boy" - I was almost seventeen. But I thought that if I got on her good side, things would end in my favor.
"So that's why you need to listen," she continued. "The trick to this Game is sponsors - and the trick to getting sponsors is to do something drastic."
She nodded. "We need to shock the sponsors. And I have the perfect way."
It turned out that the perfect way was cannibalism. It had never been done before, she explained, looking incredibly sincere for someone who was feeding me such a big line of shit. It was supposed show them how powerful we were. How unstoppable.
I was an idiot. I went along with it.
But in the Bloodbath, we were split up. I battled it out at the Cornucopia and she had to "run from Careers" (Bullshit, as later figured out). I had still gone along with the plan - I thought we would meet up. And her reasoning wasn't half bad - who wouldn't want to sponsor a killing machine?
By the end of the day, I had killed three people - one Career and both from District Twelve. I had ate most of them too, starting up a nice little fire and charring limbs on a stick. The smell of burning flesh wafted through the air, but I didn't mind much. Kinda smelled like steak.
It was surprising how simple it was - how I didn't feel any pain or sorrow during the whole thing. But I guess if you had to weigh survival against the killing and mutilation of innocent children, the former wins out. At least, in my book it sure did.
So that's how I played the Game - there were no rules, after all. I killed eight more, and others killed each other off while I stood back. I began to crave the taste of humans. By the fourth day, it was just Celia and me.
At that time, I had had no misgivings that she had held up her end of the bargain. The way she had explained it, it felt like she believed it too.
I trusted her - a girl I had barely known. But that shit she sold me didn't pay off. She was playing on a whole different level, and she knew that the Gamemakers, sooner or later, would take me out. That they would cheat me out of my win - they were too pussy to see a real Victor take home the crown.
And my downfall soon turned out to be an avalanche - a freaking avalanche! I knew the moment the rocks came down that I should've seen this coming. Sure, Celia and the Gamemakers had their grubby little hands in it, but at the end of the day: My stupidity was my death.
But in some alternate universe where the Capitol wasn't cringing at my every move and the Gamemakers let me finish it off, I was the winner. Sneaky little Celia wouldn't have stood a chance against me, and I would've been eating her stringy little heart (and enjoying it) as the final cannon fired.
But she tricked me. That sneaky bitch tricked me.
I'm the winner. Or, at least, I should have been. Get it, Capitol? Get it, Celia? Get it?
Because cannibalism or not, I still would've come out on top. No matter what you do or what rules you play by, there's always a winner and always a loser.
No freakin' exceptions.