A high pitched scream pierces the air before falling silent. I sit, waiting for the canon, Rue curled in my arms. "Contestants get to the Cornucopia," a flickering voice interrupts my thoughts. "Work together, it's your only hope," the voice continues before cutting off. Looking at Rue we quickly shimmy down from our perch in the trees and make our way to the Cornucopia, my bow in hand.
"Katniss," Peeta says relieved as me and Rue appear out of the forest to see Cato, Clove, Marvel, Glimmer, Thresh and Peeta all standing together, trying to work out what's going on. "Peeta," I nod. "Thresh," Rue sequels, excited as she runs past us all and into the arms of the gentle giant, who swings her around a grin lighting up his handsome face. "Are you alright," he questions checking her for injuries. Nodding she points to me. "Katniss kept me safe." "Thanks," is all Thresh says.
"Look, I don't like it but we all have to work together to get out of here," Clove says as everyone agrees. It's getting dark so we should all rest, we'll talk in the morning," Cato says taking over the position as leader. Slowly we all set up our sleeping arrangements around the fire before sitting.
Clove, Rue, Thresh, Glimmer and Peeta fall asleep quickly leaving me with Marvel and Cato who both turn and look at me. "What," I ask as they continue to look at me. No hate or annoyance in their eyes, actually no emotion's visible. "How come you and lover boy aren't all cuddled up and stuff," Marvel asks as I snort delicately. "I don't love him, if that's what you're asking," is my reply. "But I thought," Marvel starts, as Cato sits and watches us quietly. "What that just causes someone wanted me that I'd have to be with them, well hate to break it to you but im going to marry for love not because I have to. I'm not even friends with him. He saved my life once but that was it. I'm here for Prim and some stupid boy is not going to get in the way."
"You're not what I thought you would be Girl on fire," Cato says almost affectionately after a few minutes of silence. I give him and Marvel a smile before laying down in time for Rue to roll over and snuggle into my arms. "Night Rue, sweet dreams," I say, kissing her on the forehead as a tear rolls down my cheek at the unfairness of it all, unaware of the fact that Cato, Marvel and a half awake Thresh are seeing me at my at my weakest.
"Rise and shine," Glimmer says from above me as I blink and look up. Throwing her a small smile I roll out of my sleeping bag and gently shake Rue awake. "Rue," I whisper, "time to get up." "Momma," Rue breathes cuddling up to me, making me smile at her innocence. "Rue its Katniss; you have to get up hun." Yawning quietly she opens her beautiful eyes and her mouth curves into a large smile. "Morning Katniss," she says as we stand and join the others who are eating. Sitting down we wave at everyone as Clove hands us our food. "Thanks," I say for me and Rue as we dig in.
"I think that if we head toward the west side there's a small glitch in the force field around the arena, big enough for us all to squeeze through," Rue says as I smile at her proudly. "It'll probably take us about two days to get there though." "Do you remember where it is," Cato asks making Rue look down shy. She only nods as I wrap my arms around her. "Katniss can we have a quick talk before we leave," Peeta asks. Sighing I press a quick kiss to Rue's head and stand, following the boy into the woods, aware of everyone's eyes on us.
"What do you think they're talking about," Clove asks watching as they disappear into the forest. "Maybe they're talking about a way to escape the arena without us," Thresh says shocking us. None of us had ever heard him talk this much, at all. "Katniss would never leave me," Rue, says standing and glaring at the large boy. "I trust her," I say drawing everyone's eyes to me. "So do I," Clove agrees which shocks not only me but everyone else. "I don't trust him though," Glimmer says motioning to the forest. "He joined us to hunt her down and now he's all buddy, buddy," Marvel states. "He seems a little, I don't know but I don't think he actually loves her, for her," Marvel says obviously thinking out loud. "Yeah I don't think he's as innocent as we've been lead to believe, I think we should look out," Glimmer says just as Katniss starts walking toward us "hey guys what'd we miss." "Nothing much we should get going though," I say standing.
"What'd you want to talk to me about," I say as we come to a stop about forty feet away from view. "When we get out we're going to kill them all off and then act like they all got sick, or killed each other." I gasp and look at him in disbelief "What, they have been nothing but kind since the games stopped. And even if they hadn't they are still people," I say taking a step back as a furious expression comes over his normally cute face. "You will do as I say Katniss," he says stepping closer and closer till im backed up against a tree. "You are my girl, and that means you will do as I tell you," he says gripping my hair and yanking so I'm face to face with him. "I am not your girl," I hiss struggling against his larger body. "Oh yes you are," he says grinning at me in a way that makes fear crawl down my spine. He kisses me with such force that my head hits the tree with a smash. "Mine," he growls drawing back and biting my lip enough to make it bleed. "Never I," say as he steps back and lets me leave. Quickly he turns and punches my hard in the stomach before letting me walk past first, but not before smacking me on the arse.