hey y'all! sorry this is a little late, but! I'm officially done with my junior year at Ohio State! finals were brutal, but now this is a huge focus of mine, so hopefully I can power out a few chapters and get this show on a regular schedule! Be look here in about 10 days, maybe a little more for more!


Dawn Sinclair - District Four Female - goodbye

"This is such a fuck story already." I say slightly on edge but forcing myself to stay calm and collected. Though the cameras can't see me in here I still need to be confident for them.

"What do you mean?" My mother, Pandora, asks me.

"He's Finnick's cousin. How am I supposed to compete for sponsors with Finnick Odair's kin." My ears feel red hot angry as I spit the words out. It's not my mom's fault, but I just want to be angry at someone. This isn't what was supposed to happen.

"Fine. He's the cousin of a victor, but you're the child of one. Or did you forget that I won the Hunger Games myself." My mom tilts her head eyebrow raised in a challenge.

"But you're not Finnick Odair. Everyone loves him." I say slightly pouting.

"And your mother is Pandora Clarity, and I'm your father Reynolds Sinclair, and you're Dawn Sinclair our beautiful daughter who's going to win the Hunger Games!" Dad speaks with zeal. He's always been the pushier of the two for me to claim my title as victor.

"I know, I know, I know. This just isn't how I wanted this to go." I admit out loud. The disappointment on my dad's face is almost palpable.

"You're giving up?" He says with disgust in his voice.

"No!" I shout impulsively.

"That's it sweetheart! That's the fire I need you to have 24/7 from now on. I don't care what the Bouchard boy does and how strong any other tributes look. It's your show and your victory don't forget that." He pulls me close against his chest.

I stare at a spot on the ground as I wrap my arms around him. I try to tell myself that he's right, that this is what I've always wanted and that I'm going to walk into the arena and have no issues. I know I'm skilled and strong, but at the end of the day I'm not sure if this is what I want. I want to know who I am and what type of person I am. I want to be a victor like my mother. I want my father to be proud of me, I want his validation to be real not something that mom has to choke out of him, and if this is what I have to do to earn that pride then so be it.

I just don't want to kill for it.

"Hun, can I have a little alone time with Dawn before she goes?" My says prying him off of me.

"Of course darling." He kisses me on the forehead. "Don't let me down in there." As he turns and I leave I will myself to say something. Anything that would make him realize that this is a competition where anything can happen.

"If I come back I hope you'll be proud of me." The words bubble out of me and I'm mortified with myself. I typically keep things like that to myself. My pulse immediately skyrockets and my hands sweat. He turns to me with a stoic expression and emotionless eyes.

"That'll depend on the nature of your return. If you come as you are or." He drags a finger across his throat.

"That's enough Reynolds." My mom says sternly. He exits. "I swear that man." She rolls her eyes into her head and I embrace her in a hug.

"Thanks mom. For everything." Tears well in my eyes but I don't let them fall.

"Don't thank me yet." She pulls away from me and holds my shoulders and stare me in the eyes. "Listen to everything I'm about to say. These games are meant to test you in the cruelest ways possible. I can't promise what you'll find in the arena but you'll never be 100% prepared for it. I went into my games so surefire and kill crazy, I made it out on mostly luck. Don't make the mistake of thinking that the best way to win is by killing, because it's not. It's about living." Her words flow over me and comfort me. My mother is easily the wisest person I know. She's my hero, she continues.

"You're personable, strong, and so skilled. Some people will be intimidated by you and scare and other will view you as a challenge to overcome. None of that matters so long as you who you are." She pokes me in the chest for emphasis.

"Mom." I say feeling emotions well up within me.

"Your father wanted me to give you a ring with a vial of poison in it, but I know they'd find it and find a special way to kill you." She reaches for a locket around her neck and takes it off. "This was the locket my mother gave me when I volunteered for the games. Inside she always kept a picture of my sister. I thought it'd be appropriate for you to have it now." She hands the locket to me and I pinch open the clasp revealing a picture of my parents smiling. Inscribed along the edges it says in perfect cursive We love you.

"This is incredible."

"Just like you Dawn." Mom says with that tone that makes you believe her no matter what she says. "You can do this and I have faith in you. Chelsea might be your official mentor and I might technically be from District Two but you'd better believe that you'll have everything you need in there." She hugs me one more time. "I love you."

"I love you too." A peacekeeper opens the door and she leaves. I can do this.

Juniper Smith - District Seven Female

"You are impossible." Delilah says holding her forehead with one hand and the other on her hip. "I can't believe you would do that. Juniper it was stupid."

"Stupid?" I stare at her with wide eyes. "You have anemia. You wouldn't last a day." I stare at her thin slight frame and imagine her running through the woods and collapsing from sheer exhaustion as a pack of careers ambush her like a wild boar.

"Like you will!" She says reactionaryily.

"Longer than you!" I say with a little punch. She rolls her eyes and reminds me exactly why she's my best friend. She's a challenge to me. She can keep up with my temper take my crap and give it to me ten fold right back. She's one of a kind and I still don't understand why she spends so much time with me. She crosses her arms and stares at the ground suppressing a smirk.

"Honestly though. Why'd you do that?" Her eyes plead with me. Our friendship is build on mutual trust and kindness, and honestly I don't have it in me to lie to her.

"If I'm being honest it's because I can't stand the thought of watching you die. I have a better chance than most a winning because of all tree chopping and you know being a lumber chick and all." I tell her honestly.

"You'd risk throwing your life away for me? Juniper, I'll never be able to repay you for this. How could I?" She sounds pained but I know she's being transparent with me.

"Repay? I would risk my life for you everyday to keep you safe."

"This isn't going to be a bar brawl with your older brothers at your back. It's the Hunger Games Juni. People train their whole lives for this and die every year. You haven't trained at all and I don't want you to..." She trails off.

"Die." The word sits in the air. Suddenly the room feels hot and stuffy and I feel an unnecessary wave of sweat coat my entire body. I don't want to die either. But honestly, I have a really good chance compared to most people and a way better shot than Delilah could ever have. Even if she made it past the first day she'd collapse and die while trying to run away. I couldn't stand to watch that, I like her.

"Yeah. That." Delilah pinches her nose and tosses her hair behind her ear.

"I won't." I whisper. I feel tears welling in my eyes and blink them away and start pacing in a circle. If for no other reason than to calm my nerves. It takes a minute but eventually I relax enough and face her once again. "I'll come back."

"You have to." Without thinking I grab her face in my hands and press my lips against hers. Once. Twice. A third time I linger and try to remember everything. The smell of pine on her clothes the subtle taste of this mornings maple syrup pancakes lingering on her breath.

"I couldn't go away without knowing what that's like. At least once." I say as soon as I pull away. Half elated and half ashamed. Her face is subtly surprised but no displeased. Or maybe I'm looking into things a little too much. Maybe I can't read her face at all.

"You have to come back to me Juni." Delilah's voice is resilient and unwavering.

"I'm going to." I say nodding.

"I don't care what you do. If you have to bury someone or burn them alive do whatever it takes to get back here." Her tone is a far cry what the bubbly and charismatic girl I'm accustomed to. But her eyes speak to how seriously she's taking all this. "I don't know what help I can be from District Seven, but I'll figure something out. I don't know how, but I will help you." She closes the small gap between us and embraces me in a strong hug. It's a comforting, familiar, feeling.

"I'll kill them all if I have to." I whisper into her ear. I picture all the scenarios I could find myself: holding someone underwear until the drown, biting into their neck and ripping out their vocal cords, using a tree branch to pierce someone's throat as they sleep, slipping poison into an allies meal. I'll do anything I have to.


"Time is up ladies." A peacekeeper in pearly white armor announces.

"Keep my brothers in line if they need it, you know how my family can be." I say quickly replacing the violent images in my head with those of my family, who I've already said goodbye to.

"Good luck Juni." The door closes before I can say thank you.

"Follow me ma'am." The same peacekeeper that locked Delilah out grabs me by the arm and leads me out a door where I'm assaulted by camera flashes and a swathe of reporters. I ignore their questions and walk onto the sleek train ready to begin my journey back.

I will win these games.

Rai Caheyl - District Five Male

Everything is so soft. It's sad that's the first real thing I notice once I come down off the high of volunteer and being shuttled along through a process few are ever forced into, and ever fewer choose to experience. The seat is soft. The fabric is soft. The color scheme is soft. It all just makes me want to nap as we zip down the sparking tracks. I could almost tell myself that I'm relaxed. If only I wasn't being glowered at.

"So, it's Rai correct?" Gracelyn asks me with the world's most forced smile.

"That's right, your Gracelyn Cassock right?" I ask, though I know exactly who she is. You don't forget your victors quickly when your entire district only has 3, and only 1 of those is a girl.

"That's right." She stares at the floor and licks her lips searching for the right words. After a few failed attempts and plenty of hand gestures she point blank asks me. "Why the flying fuck did you volunteer?" Gracelyn grabs a stool and sits directly across from me, but just too close. It too look incredibly soft.

"Well." I wrack my brain for the proper way to explain everything to her. I let my impulse boil to the surface. "Freedom." My shoulders seem to relax even further and I lean back into the plush train seat.

"Freedom?" She breathes heavily. "What part of this is going to give you any freedom?" She questions me indignant. I didn't expect her to understand, how could I? How do you explain to someone that your whole life has been one guinea pig experiment after another? How do you explain to a total stranger that your father viewed you as a petri dish and not a son? I'm not sure I could ever really be able to divulge all that to someone. Let alone someone I barely know and don't really trust.

So I shrug at her.

"Oh no. You're not getting off the hook that easily shit for brains. You're going to sit there and give me the information I need to know to save your stupid ass. Wattson said something about a crazy scientist, how much of that is true?" At her question I stiffen. Such a pervasive rumor my existence is.

"Don't say that word." I whisper. This clearly intrigues Gracelyn. Her eyes light up with a curiosity I've grown to fear over my entire life. I'm not a slab of meat. Especially for a girl who I owe nothing.

"Crazy? Does that bother you? How about psycho? Or freak?" I start clenching my fists. I've always considered myself a reserved person, but there's never a reason to attack someone's person. Not like this. Not taking a bunch of cheap from your throne when you don't even have half the facts.

"Stop." I say slightly louder trying to control my racing heart beat. She doesn't let up though and the words bounce around in my head like tracker jackers swarming their prey.

"Psycho." Echoes the loudest. Glass shatters in my mind and I should

"Shut up! You don't know me! God why are you doing this? Why do people always take so little information and then judge so harshly? Is it really so hard for you people to actually talk to me?!" The words come out hot and fast, they feel good finally coming out.

Everything I despise about the world is summed up in this one woman. Someone who has surely had strugglers in their life but has been given opportunities to save their skin and make themselves into something. Now that they're on top and privileged they can go around shitting on anyone they want for any reason they want. I refuse to stand by idly and let it continue.

"So you can talk!" Gracelyn lights up.

"I'm not a mute!"

"Well if you're some crazy experiment how am I supposed to know what you can and can't do when you don't freaking talk to me?"

"What do you want to know oh all powerful Gracelyn?" I spit the words at her, heart racing.

"This is good kid. How about why the fuck you volunteered!" She re-questions. This time words pour out.

"Because one time my dad gave me a serum that was supposed to make me grow a foot overnight. We were going to sell it to District Two and make millions of credits and live happily. So after he injected me with it I got a really bad rash for a week and couldn't poop for two days. And that's one of the more fun examples. I have no choices in life. Do that. Eat this. Try this new medicine. Obey. Obey. Obey. So I saw my chance to make decision for me and I did it, and I'm letting you judge my actions about it."

"Well I'll be damned." Gracelyn stands up, puts her stool back, and smiles.


"I don't care about your story kid. I don't care if you've been a guinea pig or whatever. I care about your future and making you a victor. You just showed me some fire, I can work with that. Are you in this to win? Or to die? Because if you volunteered to die I'm going to take a nap. If you volunteered to change your life we have reapings to recap. Which is it?" I ponder her ultimatum for a moment, but only a moment because the answer is clear.

"Grab some paper before you start the recaps, I like to take notes."

Duchess Ashni - District Two Female

"I want to get straight to the recaps." I tell Enobaria.

"Eager are we?" She asks sipping a large glass of white zinfandel. "Would you like some?" She offers me a glass that I take happily. A little wine would be nice, if for no other reason than to enjoy my time a little more. This is the experience of a lifetime, I should enjoy every second of my rise to victor status.

"Very eager. Let's get started."

"Give me just a moment." Enobaria disappears into another cart. I glare at Princeton willing him to leave. Can't he take a hint?

"You want me to leave so you can judge everyone's reaping without me. Right?" I purse my lips mad that he could read my microaggressions, but pleased that he understood. "Consider me gone. Just remember I'm your best ally." He winks at me and leaves.

"He's right." I verbally remind myself. District Two is known for loyalty as much as possible, though we're also known for doing whatever it takes to win. I have no doubt I'll have to take him out, but for now he's an asset.

"Who's right?" Enobaria asks me holding a tray of thinly shaved meats, cheeses, and assorted crackers.

"No one. Let's get started." I say reaching for the remote. There's only one channel and it's conveniently playing the District One Reaping, it might actually be the only thing the Capital is showing right now, I couldn't image what else.

"I was talking to my friends Fleur and Gloss, the mentors for District One this year. Apparently this guy is incredible, the girl wasn't meant to volunteer though. That could be good or bad."

"It's bad. It means she's reckless and doesn't fall in line." I can change that. "As for him, he looks almost as strong as Princeton." Welton's shoulders are broad his jaw set and eyes unyielding. He's a born killer. Nigella is the problem child of the pair.

"They are both huge threats." I watch as Princeton looks calm, strong, and sexy as he volunteers. I look collected and ruthless. I look deadly and determined, much like Welton I look like a killer. Princeton looked more like a joke.

"Let's skip District Three." I say reaching for the remote.

"Never skip Three. They have lots of victors for a reason." I obey and lower the remote. A thin asian kid takes a puff from an inhaler and drags his ass to the stage, a bloodbath if I ever saw one. The girl looks very put together and says a line about looking forward to accepting the challenge. She could be a troublemaker in the making. No one just says things like that for no reason. She's smart, and probably very well disciplined, which makes her a huge threat.

At least, for a non-career.

"She could be a tough one." I say politely acknowledging Enobaria who smiles widely silently telling me 'I told you so'.

District Four erupts in applause for a girl named Dawn, who looks the part of a strong and confident career. Lots of smiles and handshakes followed by her graciously name dropping her victor mother ends her 5 minutes of fame. I don't fear her one bit. Then some kid is reaped and Enobaria leans forward.

"Well tits." She says half laughing. "Dreams do come true."

"What?" She laughs a little bit as District Four stays silent. Last year's victor, Finnick, screams at the crowd.

"That's Finnick's cousin." My mind starts racing a mile a minute. I told myself I'd have to be ruthless, and he has the ultimate connection to sponsors if he's in tight with Finnick. He dies first. I make a mental note that he's only 15 surely not on par with the rest of us who are all at least 2 years his senior.

District Five's girl doesn't stand out one bit, granted she's sufficiently pretty but nothing makes her memorable. Then he district partner volunteers without any explanation. Why? He doesn't look strong or trained.

"I'll have to keep on eye on him." Caheyl, I tell myself to remember the name.

District Six is almost a carbon copy of District Five, an unremarkable younger girl is reaped and another boy volunteers. When asked why he just shrugs at the escort. He doesn't have any training either. He can't, the first thing they teach us after we learn to walk is how to handle being on camera.

"So many volunteers, and one who didn't volunteer." Enobaria says. "You have many targets already."

"Yes ma'am." I say in my most lady like and polite voice.

Damn right I do.

Klementine Carresse Grasswood - District 11 Female

"I always ask one thing out of my tributes ok? It's that you don't lie to me. I don't care who you are, where you've been, or what you're planning. I really only care about getting you through each and every day up until someone a little stronger take that privilege away from me." Sirco's mentor Chaff addresses both of us. I stare at his missing arm with a lump in my throat. Why he's allowing me in the room he's set to say.

"Understood, sir." Sirco says like a polite gentlemen.

"You two need to have a conversation right now and I don't care what the outcome is but I need to know if you're teaming up or not. Technically Sirco you're my tribute and Klem isn't. But I think we all know that nut job Teak isn't actually any help. I'm offering to train both of you." Sirco turns to me with a blank expression. I want to beg for his help and to join him but I say nothing. I've always been a shy person, incredible so.

"I think it's a great idea, us teaming up." Sirco says in a low voice, almost a grumble. He's a man. Not a teenager or a kid like myself, but a real man. How is this fair? I almost miss the part where he agreed to ally with me.

"I agree. That'd be amazing." I say avoiding eye contact while physically feeling the tension in my shoulders release. I didn't know how immediately stressed I became.

"Great well first thing is first let's watch the other reapings." He grabs the remote and start flicking some buttons and soon a wall alights with Caesar Flickerman's face.

"Now let's get to the District Seven reaping!" He says thoroughly enthusiastic.

"We missed half of them." Sirco says.

"They'll be played on repeat kid. Don't worry, just watch and try to pick out allies. You can tell something about a person by their reaping."

"I volunteer as tribute." A strong looking redhead volunteers.

"What does her reaping tell us?" I ask genuinely curious.

"Didn't you see the way she leaned in and said something to the girl? They have different last names so the volunteer is either incredibly stupid or has the hots for the other chick, and based on that hug it's the latter. Pay attention Klem." Chaff says matter of factly. I know he didn't mean to sound rude, but the guy is genuinely disdainful. "What can you tell me about the guy?" I watch as someone apparently named Connor lumbers on to the stage he's just as big as Sirco.

"He's been doing manual labor his whole life. Probably cutting trees since it's District Seven." I respond trying to sound observant and like I'm trying.

"And?" Chaff further questions me. Sirco comes to my rescue and answers.

"And they'd probably be great allies." Chaff claps a few times pleased with Sirco's response. I look to the ground slightly angered that I didn't jump to that conclusion. I need allies.

District Eight is unremarkable. A pale skinned girl who's my age is reaped as well as an older boy who looks lean but otherwise unimpressive. Neither Sirco nor Chaff says anything so I keep my thoughts to myself. No need to overshare. In District Nine the girl immediately makes a run for it.

"Run bitch!" Chaff shouts jumping from his seat spilling liquor all over himself. He chuckles and takes a shot as she's dragged to the stage. "I love runners. They make good allies too! Means they have fire." The boy much less excitingly just walks up to stage wiping away tears. District Ten has less excitement though the boy reaped has muscles, not like a career, but far more than his district partner, another girl my age.

"He'd be a good ally yes?" I say daring to speak out again. It's really not my most comfortable area, speaking around strangers. Speaking at all really. I can get a little rowdy with my closest friends and I can chat about the latest fashion but I always end up feeling exhausted and retreat for time alone.

"Very good. That girl is a bloodbath though. Avoid her like starvation." Chaff agrees eating a roll smothered in butter. Again tension in my shoulder melts away. I appreciate the validation.

When I see District Eleven I immediately close my eyes tight until they hurt I don't want to see any of it. I can picture myself looking weak next to giant Sirco and picture people already counting me out like District Ten's girl. I keep them closed until I hear Caesar announce District Twelve.

The youngest person, a boy, is reaped and I don't even consider him for a second. I have to ally strong and the girl is only a year younger. Both bloodbaths more likely than not.

"Don't ally with them. They'll get you killed."

"That's so sad." Sirco says, and I agree with him. Counting people out like this it's sick.

"That's called strategy kid. Play the game or die. Take your pick."

I pick play the game, which is exactly what they want. Am I disgusted with myself? Yes. Am I winning these games no matter what? You bet.

Einion Rutley - District Six Female

My god. They're tattoos.

I stare at Katarina's cheeks unabashedly taking in every detail. Four perfectly curved lines across each side of her face. Why? I couldn't tell you, but she made the decision to get tattoos. Maybe she really hates herself too. I smirk to myself thinking about someone with the world at their fingertips like her making such stupid decisions.

People like her, victors, people with accomplishments and proud histories have no reason to be depressed. I watch Dane, the mother mentor, wrap an arm around Arlette and start hobbling into another train cart. His story of losing his leg is well known, trying to smuggle guns is legal, doesn't matter you status as a victor. Katarina shot him and he lost the leg.

Why? Why, do people just so recklessly do stupid shit like that. Risk their amazing lives for what? What, a tiny part of District Six to have guns and be able to rebel? Stupid.

"Now listen Arlette." Dane says leading her into the next cart.

"It's Letta." She says with a little bite.

"Either way, stay away from fuck up volunteer boy." The door closes and his voice becomes too muffled for me to hear. I want to go in there and tell him that I'm not a fuck up, but what's the use. I'm not going to be able to really change his mind, and he's right. I did volunteer. Someone who has all the power in the world like him wouldn't understand why though.

"Kid what's going on in that head." Katarina snaps in my face. "We're focusing on me now." She says while getting her wing tip mascara perfect.

"What do you know?" I say impulsively. "You'll never understand me." Her eyes gloss over my body like I'm a piece of meat or a cheap painting.

"I think I know you a little better than you'd like to admit." She walks over to me practically purring at me and rubs her index finger across my arm and pushes harshly into the crux of my elbow. Right where a small needle usually finds it's home. "You've been doing it wrong for years my new friend." I look away with my face feeling hot.

"Fuck you." I say more to myself than to anyone else. I used to preach to Oliver to stay away from druggies and people with no self control. No matter how hard I preached though that night when I was 8 and he was only 6 he still took a pill from the prostitutes hanging out with my mother in the living room. I'll never forget shaking his tiny body in the morning begging for him to wake up. However dreams don't come, they will follow you forever as nightmares though.

"Try this." Katarina grabs my face and forces my jaw open. She places what looks like a clear plastic square on my tongue. It dissolves immediately on my tongue with a bitter hit. "This is morphling's funner cousin. There are so many names that I don't keep track." She places one on her tongue. "Enjoy the ride."

We sit down for hours just laughing hysterically about this and that and nothing at all. I think I ask her about the whiskers but I can't remember if I actually asked or if I just imagined it, let alone if she gave me a reply. Her lips say she's going to the bathroom and she disappears. Oliver walks through the door and takes her place.

"No." I say with a sense of finality. "No."

"Why didn't you save me." Oliver's voice echoes in my head though his lips don't move. "I was only 6 how was I supposed to know." His eyes start to sink into his head and the familiar feeling of guilt starts to pulse in my head. "Help me!" His innocent voice shrieks.

"Get out of my head." I mumble, the shout. "Get out!" Instantly I'm flooded with memories of holding his body, of screaming at my mother for not getting her act together, of making another drug deal, of trying to stay in class but just being too tired. Such awful memories, I'll be rid of them soon.

"Einion, you're screaming dude." Katarina says throwing her arm around me. "Let me show you something incredible." With a gentle tug we end up with our faces plastered against the cool glass window. "The Capital."

Tall beautifully constructed stone towers dominate the skyline with limestone domes and sparkling ruby spires. Spread winged eagle insignias cover the sides of buildings and as we slow I notice colorfully dressed people hustling between the buildings. Men with feathers entangled in their hair. Women who have facial tattoos that put Katarina's to shame. A couple holds hands sitting on a marble bench with matching outfits, they jump upright as the train slows further to a stop.

"Everyone in this city is waiting to get to know you Einion. The world in all it's beauty and hell is yours to conquer." My eyes alight at the sheer 'extra' before me.

"All for me." I try to smile at the expanse of people crowding to the window. I instinctively start waving at them.

"When you die, they will make you immortal. Volunteering was the best thing that ever happened to you." She nudges me and I take another tab from her, take it, and keep waving. I can enjoy this.

so this was honestly a lot of fun to write, y'all have amazing tributes and digging into their psychology has been nothing shy of awesome.

before you leave check out the poll on my profile, I want to keep integrating the mentors and I want you to tell me which ones!

have a great day y'all, see you in about 10-14 days with the chariot rides!