This idea just came to me randomly while I was listening to the 2017 Newsies soundtrack, I'm not sure how it will turn out. Let me know if I should continue it.-Prologue-
-16 December, 1896-
-New York, USA-
I wake up on that day, cold, starving, thirsty. All I want is to curl up and die. Unfortunately, I can't do that. Mom is expecting me. I stand up and continue walking to my house. When I open the door I call out for mom. No answer. No. She can't be dead. She's all I have left. I find her on the floor. Suicide. I squeeze my eyes shut and kneel down next to her, refusing to cry. I suddenly stand up, trying to get as far away from her as possible. I run outside and into the woods behind my house. I reach into a hollowed out log and pull out my bow and arrow along with my hunting knife. Next to my bow lays what was once my father's bow. When he died, Gale started using it. When he died, I put it in my log and left it there. I begin running.
"Katniss Everdeen." I raise my bow as I turn in the direction of the voice. It's a man, smiling at me.
"That's me." I say hesitantly.
"We have been looking for you. My job is to recruit orphans who need our help. We feed, clothe, and shelter you in return for your services. Would you like to join us?"
"No. I don't want to live another minute. Much less live comfortably."
The man's smile grows, if that's possible. Someone from behind me hits me in the back of the head and I'm knocked unconscious.
When I wake up, I'm in a large room, lying in a king sized bed. I try to stand up, but realize I'm tied down. I scan the room, looking for anything to help me get out. My eyes land on the nightstand, where my weapons are laid. With much struggling, I manage to grab the hilt of my knife with my teeth. I drop it on my stomach, pick up the sheathed blade with my mouth and shake my head a few times and the knife falls out of the sheath. I pick up the hilt, once again, and cut through the restraints on one arm. I then put the knife in my hand and cut the rest.
I leave the room, determined to get answers. I take the knife with me.
When I step into the hallway, I notice there at only a few people there. The smiley guy, a tall man in all black, a girl in dark purple, and a boy dressed the same. All four erupt in applause. I raise an eyebrow at them.
"Hello again, Katniss. My name is Mr. Gordon. That man is George Phillips, you can call him Phillips. This young lady is Legossi and the boy is Rocke. They are your fellow year mates-"
"Excuse me, Mr. Gordon, but where exactly am I?" I cut him off.
"Oh, of course. You are at The Academy. It's that place I was telling you about. We're training you to be assassins. Isn't that exciting? Anyway, Phillips owns the whole business. Here's your schedule and you'll begin classes tomorrow."
An assassin? I think. I don't want to kill anyone!
I nod and take the paper anyway. It's all written out in neat, cramped handwriting.
Wake up…. 7:00
Knife techniques…. 9:00
Disguise and camouflage…. 10:00
Poisons…. 1:30Running…. 2:30
Free time…. 6:30
Lights out…. 10:00
I squeeze my eyes shut. How did I get roped into this?
-16 December, 1896-
-Manhattan, New York City-
I let a sob escape my lips. My father has died. My last tie to sanity. I continue running until I run smack into a man. A rather smiley man.
I raise an eyebrow. "How do you know me?"
"Everyone knows you. You're Finnick Odair, famous for your looks. And I have a job offering for you."
The man nods and continues. "I need you to sell newspapers. You'll live with the other newsies. Its so much fun, trust me. So whaddya say?"
"...Yes" I say hesitantly.
"You don't sound sure."
"Yes. I'm sure, sir." I say firmly.
"Good. You're in. Follow me."
"Alright then. My name is Mr. Gordon, and I'm basically your manager."
We finally reach a small house with messy, cracked, yellow shudders that clashed against the stone walls. The door was an ugly shade of olive green. When we enter, I see a beat up couch in one corner, a wood table with four chairs around it, one is overturned. In the other corner is a wood stove and pipe that is dripping water. I can see two room. The last one's door is wide open and I can see four sets of bunk beds pushed up against the far wall. The floor space is spotless, and under each bed are two wood chests. Mr. Gordon blows a high pitched whistle (I stole this idea from The Sound Of Music, lol.) Nine kids come running out of the second room and stand in a straight line.
"This is the newest recruit. Say your name and age, son."
"Finnick Odair, fourteen." I say.
"Good. Now, in order, you will step forward and say your name and age, much like Finnick did."
"Haymitch Abernathy, eighteen."
"Chaff Green, eighteen."
"Brutus Billiard, seventeen."
"Cashmere Beckham, sixteen."
"Gloss Beckham, sixteen."
"Maple Gregg, sixteen."
"Enobaria White, fifteen."
"Blight Quinten, thirteen."
"Johanna Mason, twelve."
"Great. Finnick was orphaned just today, so be considerate. Is there an extra blanket for him?"
"Yes sir." Haymitch answers.
"Good. Let's put him under bed B. Dismissed."
Everyone glares at me, except Maple, who smiles and says "come on. Let's get you set up."
She leads me into the bigger room, opens the closet and hands me a white blanket. I set down my bag with my stuff. She shows me the second bunk.
"This is yours."
"Am I top or bottom?"
"Neither. Your under it."
Then, I notice another chest pushed up against the wall.
"Who else sleeps under the bed?" I ask her.
"Johanna is under A. That's her chest on the far wall. Let me get you one."
Maple walks into the other room and then comes back later with another chest.
"This is for you. Put your stuff in it and push it up against the wall. I'll be right back with the other kids."
In a couple of minutes, she comes back leading the other kids. Haymitch snorts.
"Kid, you just made the biggest mistake of your life. Once you agree, you're in it until you're nineteenth birthday. Then you get the option to leave."
Chaff nods in agreement. "I'm out next week, Haymitch is about a month later. I can't wait. The rest of us have at least a year. You've gotta feel bad for Johanna, though. She's only twelve."
Johanna punches him. "I don't want your sympathy. I may be the youngest, but I can take care of myself."
"Ow. Sorry, Jo."
Johanna nodded at me. "Hey, fish boy."
"Yeah. You used to sell fish, didn't you?"
"Yes. How'd you know?"
"You always got my best customers."
I feel really bad now.
"Yeah. You'll still get them because you're handsome, charming, charismatic-" Blight starts.
"Maybe so, but you'll still get some, too, because you're also handsome, charming, charismatic-" I fire back
"And also a poor, dirty, disabled orphan." Haymitch says with a scowl.
Wow. This guy is just so bright and happy. All of the time.
Just so you know, Maple is the victor from Twleve that died before Katniss's games.