The Hunger Games: The First Quarter Quell [BEING STARTED OVER]



  • Was reading back through this and noticed that I accidentally wrote that the abandoned city was chosen. Whoops haha.

    41% of readers chose to [B. Suggest an jungle setting.] "I was thinking a jungle would be a good setting." Theo said, scratching his ch

  • @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan

    Chapter 24: His Plan

    Theoram Warrik

    "His name is Roman Walsh. Age: 45. His injury is a broken arm and blunt force concussion. Time of injury: 5:07 p.m." The nurse with bright purple lips and mascara took care when she recorded the information onto her clipboard. The way she said it made Theo wince. She said it like the man was dead. Falling from a second story window couldn't kill Roman. "You were there with him at the time, no?"

    The nurse didn't even offer Theo the respect of looking him in the eye when she spoke. She only watched Roman's unconscious body on the bed, as if making sure he didn't move. "Yes." He replied. "I was there."

    "And you?" She nodded to Everra who stood in the corner of the room, watching the window.

    "Yes." She said. "Can we stop with this charade? You're acting like it's too late to save him. He's got a broken arm, for Christ's sake."

    "Settle down, miss." The nurse shot back. "I'm just taking down notes. It's customary here. I've extended visits to friends, but don't think I can't take that away."

    She stormed from the room, leaving the door wide open behind her. On her way out, the door almost slammed in Kirt's face. He stepped into room 533 with a look of worry on his face. "Is he okay?" Kirt asked. "I came as soon as I heard."

    "He's going to be fine." Theo replied, looking back to his friend. The man's once well-coiffed brown hair now lay in strands over the pillow his head rested against. Earlier that day, Roman had woken up for a few moments, only long enough to speak a few sentences to Theo just before falling away again. It was like he was sleep talking, but in a more conscious state.

    When the authorities showed up at the scene, he pointed them in the direction of the broken glass and four Peacekeepers quickly stormed the building, guns trained on whoever could be hiding there, but when they arrived, there was no one to be found. There was no sign of a struggle, except the broken window. Everything was still placed exactly how it had been the day before. Whoever had thrown Roman from that window must have not had too much resistance. Theo hoped he could shed light on the matter when he woke.

    After the commotion and after Roman was lifted to the hospital, Theo and Everra instantly rushed over to see him. Dorian had an "appointment," but they both knew it was because he was squeamish.

    "Kirt." Everra said with a bit of malice in her tone.

    "Everra." Kirt shot back. He'd never been in the same room as both of these people. He hadn't realized they weren't fond of each other. Kirt's emotion returned to concern. "What happened Theo?"

    "He fell..." Theo replied. "Fell from the floor above us onto the balcony. He was thrown."

    "Tell me you caught the bastard." Kirt forced the words from his lips angrily.

    "I didn't."

    "Damnit!" He turned towards the window and bit his fist. From there, they had a clean view of the gray canopy that was the Capitol. The sea of industry... "You don't think this could have been an assassination attempt, could it? Who would have problems with Roman?"

    "What else could it have been?" Everra asked, leaning against the wall. "Roman's a good man, but he's not without his enemies. He's the Head Gamemaker. It must have been the Radicals living outside the city limits."

    "I thought Snow, God Bless his Name, took care of them already." Kirt said in confusion. There were other, less messy ways of taking down the Capitol. Surely they knew this...

    "He didn't wipe them out." She answered. "Just fought them back enough so they wouldn't have a dream of fighting back anymore. They're still there. Maybe one snuck in and tried to kill him?"

    "Did a pretty shit job..." He sighed. "Falling one story's not going to kill someone. Just enough to-"

    "Break his arm." Theo interrupted him. "Maybe it wasn't an assassination, but someone definitely intended to hurt him, maybe scare him into doing something for them. Either way, they can't just get away with something like this."

    "Shit, Theo." Everra raised an eyebrow, surprised. "I didn't know you were such an expert on the subject."

    "I have to be." He replied. "And you should be too. A Gamemaker has to get inside people's heads, know what they're thinking. I'm very good at it."

    "How come it took you all these years to get a seat on the panel?" Everra asked. "You would have made an excellent addition to the Gamemakers."

    Theo gestured to his bad leg and then to the monocle on his eye. "They didn't want someone imperfect to sit on their council. They say it shows weakness. I had to give them a hell of a performance to even be considered."

    "Wow..." She placed her hand above her mouth in polite shock. "I'm so sorry. That's very rude of them."

    "Well, Roman managed to make it too, despite being half our size." Kirt said. "Sometimes it gets very difficult to remember how good we have it..."

    "Don't talk about me like I'm not in the room." When Theo turned to see who it was, he found Roman fully awake, smiling like he had just won the lottery. Of course, his neck brace made it difficult for him to move. "Hello, my dear friends!" He laughed. "I do trust you've made yourselves at home!"

    "Roman!" Everra had a huge grin on her face as she knelt down next to the bed and wrapped her arms around the man. She stopped when he yelped in pain.

    Roman wiped a tear from his eye with the arm that wasn't wrapped in a cast. "I appreciate your enthusiasm, Everra, but I would also appreciate it if you would wait until I'm not broken in half to do so."

    "You bastard." Kirt smiled, crossing his arms from across the room. "How long have you been awake?"

    "Oh, long enough." He replied. "Before you even arrived here. On the way to the hospital, I designed an entire river chapter to the arena in my head. Marvelous, it was!" He laughed for a moment, but then coughed in pain. "It will be a wondrous show!"

    "Ah, Roman..." Theo laughed, sitting down in the waiting chair at the foot of the bed. It helped to get off his feet since he'd been walking for a while. "You do know how to make an entrance, my friend. It was the first time I've seen you in months, and you were almost killed."

    Roman looked at his friend, then at the cement ceiling above him. "Yes. Coriolanus says I have a talent for drama."

    "Roman..." Spoke Everra, taking his hand in her own. "Before you were thrown, did you see anyone else in the room with you? The Peacekeepers are calling it attempted assassination."

    Roman laughed. "Well it didn't work out too well for them, did it? You wouldn't believe me even if I told you."

    "Who was it?" She asked. "Who-?"

    The door opened hard. It wasn't a slam, but it certainly wasn't subtle either. Two Peacekeepers stepped in with visors over their faces, rifles in hands. They stood on either side of the door, as if guarding it. Theo sat beside the bed, wondering what had caused the commotion. When he stepped into the room, Theo rose to his feet, as did every not tied to a bedside. President Snow stepped out from behind the door. He took a sniff of the white rose attached to his equally white suit before introducing himself.

    "President Snow, sir!" Everra exclaimed. She looked as though she wanted to bow, but wasn't sure what to do with her hands. "We weren't expecting you!"

    "Why not?" He raised an eyebrow. "Do not I deserve as much the right to visit my dear friend in the hospital as you? I heard about the accident, and I would like to see how my Head Gamemaker is doing with the holiday season approaching so fast..."

    "Thank you for coming, Mr. President." Roman said, the smile slowly wiping from his face. "Your concern means a great deal to me."

    "I am sure it does, my friend." He replied, running a hand through his golden hair. He laughed for a moment. His laugh sounded strange an unnatural, like a snake singing in a chorus. Theo didn't know the man had a sense of humor. "I heard from my sources that you were thrown from a window. Is that true?"

    "Indeed it is." Roman answered. "It's the closest man has ever come to human flight... except a bit more painful."

    "Well, you are lucky your friends were there to call our wonderful medical staff, weren't you?" He smiled joylessly. He turned to Everra, and then to Kirt, and then to Theo. "It was very good of you to take care of this man in his time of need, and that should not go without a reward."

    "A reward, sir?" Everra asked.

    "You will all be receiving promotions within the Gamemaking Industry." President Snow told them. Theo could tell that the two others were happy about this, but evidently, didn't look the part enough. Theo was worried though... He needed his position, and he needed it badly... "I think such a thing as saving a man's life should not go unnoticed in the Shining City, do you not?"

    "Oh, yes sir." Kirt responded, nodding. "What would you have us do?"

    Snow looked to the woman beside Roman's bed and placed his hand on her shoulder. "Everra, you have faithfully served the panel for many years. For remaining a wonderful agent of the Capitol, you will be the First Assistant Gamemaker to Roman."

    When he told her so, her eyes lit up and she smiled down at the man in the neck brace on the table. He laughed in a jolly manner, hearing the news. "You deserve it." Roman told her kindly. "You've worked harder than the rest of us combined."

    President Snow walked across the room to where Kirt stood in the corner. He seemed so ready to receive the promotion, yet Theo didn't know why. His plans were laid out, and intricate. The slightest inconvenience before it was even underway could not happen. He needed a terrain designer on his side... "Kirt, you are a good man; I have seen it." Snow spoke. "And for that, you will be granted a seat on the treasury. It is a great responsibility, do you understand? You are now in charge of our nation's budget. And a seat on the Gamemaker's treasury earns you a seat at my table. From this moment on, you are welcome in my household."

    "Thank you, sir." Kirt replied, beaming. He stood up straight with pride. Theo was frightened about the change, but he was already working ways in his mind that he could use someone as close to the President in the same way... "I will do my best."

    "I should break my bones more often." Roman scoffed, and they all joined in, including Snow. Theo remained solemn. He wondered if the President could notice his legs shaking.

    "Theoram Warrik." The President turned to him. His speech showed respect, but his eyes didn't mirror it. "The newest man on my trusted panel. What is your position?"

    "I control the sponsor drones." Theo told him.

    "Oh, no no no." Snow shook his head. "Naturally, the rookie would be assigned the lowest job of the low, but it is not fit for a man of your stature. I will promote you to-"

    "Sir..." Theo interrupted him. It was a risky move, but so was a promotion. Snow's look of praise turned to contempt very quickly, and everyone in the room went silent. "Mr. President, I do not deserve to move up. I have not worked for as long as they have. All I did was help a friend. I did what any decent person would have done."

    "A loyal man, and a humble man. You all could take a page from Mr. Warrik's book here." President Snow gave his fake grin to the rest of them, and they returned it. He leaned back in towards Theo and whispered to him so the rest could barely hear his words. "A wise man does not refuse the offer of those above him. Your father had the same problem. Now, I ask you, Theo. Who here do you trust? What person in this room would you entrust with your life?"

  • Ok, the Captiol chapters are the best.

    Way to effin good.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan Chapter 24: His Pl

  • Haha thank you. There will be a lot more of them in Part 2, since everyone will be there.

    TheLier posted: »

    Ok, the Captiol chapters are the best. Way to effin good.

  • edited August 2016

    President snow is too creepy. I honestly don't know what to choose here. This choice is too simple, yet too difficult because Snow is sly af

    EDIT: Fuck it, I'm probably overthinking(I hope..) I chose option A - "Trust Roman."

    Also, I just realised that this fanfic turned a year old a few weeks ago. Woah, time does fly.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan Chapter 24: His Pl

  • You're not overthinking it. There are a lot of layers to this one.

    TWD_stan posted: »

    President snow is too creepy. I honestly don't know what to choose here. This choice is too simple, yet too difficult because Snow is sly af

  • edited August 2016

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan

    67% of readers chose to [A. Trust Roman.]

    How did Snow know Theo's father? He had never mentioned ever even meeting the President, or his father before him. Could this man have had a hand in his father's death? No... It wasn't possible... Renald died of a heart attack... a heart attack in his own home.

    "I trust everyone here." Theo told whispered at the same level he did.

    "But if you had to choose one?"

    Theo looked around the room to all of his friends. Each of them had eyes wide, wondering as much as the President what Theo would say. He hoped they realized whatever he said to Snow wouldn't carry any weight. Theo sighed and told him. "I trust Roman... I've known him the longest."

    "Hm..." The President bit his lip. "That's interesting. Very interesting..."

    "What are you implying?" Theo raised an eyebrow as the President stepped back from him. He wanted to reach out and grab his arm to pull him back, but he knew that wouldn't end well.

    "I'm not implying anything, my wonderful Gamemaker." Snow smiled. "Just... Curious... And tell me, who would you trust if my cousin Lynona were here with us?"

    Theo was shocked at the question. He wasn't sure why President Snow was so convinced that he had plans for Lynona. For Christ's sake she was twenty years under him. Theo hadn't had a wife for a long time, and he didn't intend to have one again... After his daughter... Well, there wasn't much more room in him for heartbreak.

    "That's what I thought." Snow snarled. Theo hadn't realized he didn't respond to his question.

    "Theo?" Kirt asked, as much in confusion as the rest of them. "You're with Lynona? When did that happen?"

    "...Yes..." Theo choked out. Though it was a lie, he didn't want to directly contradict the President.

    "What have you been keeping from me, you salty dog?" Roman chuckled.

    "It appears your legs are not the only part of you that is crooked, Theo." President Snow grinned evilly and began towards the door. "I do hope you feel better soon, Roman, in order to move on with the preparation of our next Hunger Games. All of you, enjoy your promotions, because you've earned them..."

    The Peacekeepers stepped out of the room behind him and closed the door. Once he was a fair ways away, Roman sighed and gestured to Kirt and Everra with his good arm. "Will you two follow him out? I must speak with Theo alone."

    "Alone?" Everra asked. "But-"

    Kirt interrupted her by taking her by the arm and lifting her from the man's bed. He nodded to Theo and then to Roman. "We'll leave you." He said in the official tone that he carried with such skill. "Rest up, Roman. Give it a few days, and you should be back on your feet."

    "Thank you, my friend." Roman told to him.

    Kirt stepped out of the door, but Everra hung back, showing her genuine concern. She wasn't the smartest person, but she was sincere. "Get better, please?" She sighed.

    "Thank you, Everra."

    The door closed and Theo sat back down in the chair beside the bed as he had eagerly waited to do for the entirety of Snow's visit. After they were out of earshot, Theo smiled. "I think she fancies you."

    "I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed." Roman replied. "Everra is a good woman and a good friend, but she is a bit dim. You would be surprised how much women come onto men in power... Even when they're half their size."

    "Yeah... So what's this about?" Theo asked. He knew the answer to his question already. He had been dreading the topic since it happened earlier that day, but it was inevitable.

    "You and I both know what you said beside my couch after I took the fall..." Roman sighed. "I can't pretend any longer." Theo remained silent. There wasn't anything he could say that would change what happened. "I understand if you're angry or upset with the system, Theo, but this is the way it has to be."

    "You don't understand." Theo replied. "You love the Hunger Games. They're your passion. If you want to lie to someone, don't lie to me. I can see right through you."

    "Right..." He let his gaze fall to the ceiling and remain there. "Sometimes I forget you're the only other person who has any sort of intelligence in this city. Theo... I do get it, okay. I may not share your hatred for the Games, but I get why. People are killed and you feel for them. Do you think I don't?"

    "If you did, you wouldn't be where you are." Theo frowned. "The tributes are just pawns in your game."

    "...Yes and no... The tributes are under my control somewhat, but they are free to make their own choices. I just guide them along." He waved his arm through the air above him like he was controlling puppet strings. "And when one of them is killed, I feel for them. I've groomed them into what they become. I feel as though they are my own children..."

    "What you're describing is being a pawn."

    "They are not pawns!" He cried. "They are more like different colored paints on my pallet. I use them to create something beautiful... I create art."

    "Is that what you think the Games are?"

    "Listen, Theo." He said. "As undesirable as they are, they are just that: a Game. And as long as President Snow is in power, they will remain that way. I don't see the harm in trying to do something great with them. Long after we are dead and gone, no one will remember our names. We will be just dust on the ground, but from that dust, others will rise anew. What will remain is our legacy. These Games are my legacy, Theo. What is yours?"

    Theo had not yet achieved his legacy. His story was not yet written.

    "The Games are wrong, Roman." Theo said. If this were anyone other than Roman, he wouldn't be saying any of this. He may have lied to President Snow on more than a few matters, but he did trust Roman with his life. "And no matter what you tell yourself to be able to sleep at night, there's a part of you that knows it."

    "I sleep fine knowing I've given something to this world." He replied, letting his arm fall back down to the bed. "That's where we don't see eye to eye, friend."

    Through all their disagreements, Theo couldn't bring himself to hate this man like he did with the previous few Head Gamemakers. When he looked at the man, all he saw was the older kid who protected him from the terrors of the world like a big brother while his father was off fighting a war that wasn't his. "I don't want to disagree with you, Roman." Theo sighed.

    "Nor do I you..." Roman said. "We've disagreed on this subject for years... And what a disagreement it is."

    "Don't act like it's some sort of divine art, Roman. It's much bloodier than that."

    "I can't help but believe what I believe." He sighed. "Theo, I won't speak of this outside of you and me, but I need to know you're loyal to the Capitol and to Snow regardless of what you think of his methods."

    "I am..." Theo bit his teeth as he said it.

    "Good... If there were to be a war, all of Panem would get caught in the crossfire. There wouldn't be enough men left standing on either side to tell tales of victory. There would only be death..."

    "I know..."

    The two friends sat in silence for what felt like ten minutes, both contemplating the weight of the situation. Before long, the sun started to peek behind the horizon and hours had passed. How had Theo and Roman drifted this far apart? They would agree about everything growing up. They agreed about school. They agreed about the war. This was really the first time they'd disagreed, and it was the only time that mattered. It almost hurt to think about... Roman, his best friend, was the very man Theo was planning to overthrow. He hoped that when his plans were pulled into completion, Roman would make it out of the crossfire.

    "You trust me with your life, huh?" Roman asked.

    "I do." For once, Theo didn't have to lie.

    "That's nice to hear." He replied. "Nowadays there aren't very many people I can call my friend, and even few that I can say have my back. I appreciate your friendship, Theo."

    "And I appreciate yours."

    He sucked in his gut as if working up a nerve. "And I should trust you with my own, as well. It's only fair. Can I share something with you?"

    "Of course."

    "I wasn't thrown from the window." He sighed. "I jumped myself."

    "What?" Theo's eyes widened. Crazy things had been happening all day, but this one was by far the most unexpected. "Why the hell would you do that, Roman? Do you want to get killed?"

    "Sh!" He pressed his finger to his lip. "I don't want- I need this not to get out. You were not wrong when you assumed someone had put a hit out on me. I jumped for my own protection. It's better to be broken in a hospital bed than dead in the ground."

    The adrenaline from the shock began to drain from his system. It made perfect sense. "You've broken your arm!"

    "A small price to pay to keep my life." He said. "I have too many things yet to do."

    "Well... I understand if you didn't mean to break your arm, but Roman, you jumped through glass-"

    "Sugar glass." Roman corrected him. "It's a prop used by filmmakers to break without injury. I had the window installed shortly before my arrival. This plan took a lot of thinking to put together, and I trust you will not let my secret out."

    "Goddamn..." Theo cursed placing his hand over his forehead. He didn't like to swear, but this seemed like an appropriate time. "Who would put out a hit on you? Everyone loves you. Hell, even Snow loves you, and he doesn't love anyone."

    Roman chuckled a moment before continuing. "It's most likely those damn rebels outside the walls. I don't know how they got someone on the inside, but my life is in danger, I know that."

    Even hearing about the rebels left a bad taste in Theo's mouth. He agreed with their cause, but their strategy lacked tact. You couldn't just kill someone as high up in the chain as Roman without getting wiped from the face of Panem like District 13. There were other ways to go about dismantling the Capitol... cleaner ways. His plans were far more tactical, and based on strategy rather than hope.

    "You have balls..." Theo said.

    "Was there ever any doubt?" Roman sighed. It was obvious that he deeply wished he could move around a bit more, but like he said, it was better than being in the ground. "I want you to know something." He continued. "I've known you for longer than I've known anyone else. If I am to die some day, and some day soon, I want you to take over my position, and to take my inheritance. I've named you in my will."

    "What?" He was surprised Roman was even thinking about such a thing. "You can't be serious. I am in no way qualified more than someone like Everra or even Kirt to take that position. And besides, you saw what President Snow thinks of me... I wouldn't last a year."

    "Right... I can talk to Coriolanus about that." Roman lifted an eyebrow. "Did you... sleep with her? The young Gamemaker."

    "No!" Theo exclaimed.

    "Too bad." Roman laughed. "Have you seen the way she has feelings for you? If I were you, Theo, I would take the chance. There aren't many attractive young women that would have interest in an old cripple, and I say that as a friend."

    "Yes well..." Theo felt himself blush. He wondered if the man noticed. "Even if I were to... I wouldn't now, with how heavily Snow advised against it."

    "I can see that, yes..." He said. "A damn shame that is."

    "Anyway," Theo replied, getting back on topic, "I can't take the job from you. No one would have it."

    "They would if I talked them into it." He nodded. "You would be good at it, Theo. You know you would. You have a mind for strategy."

    "Well, regardless..." Theo sighed. "It's not going to happen. You and I are going to live long and happy lives. And when we are on our death beds, we won't be worrying about things such as who sits in the biggest chair at the dinner table."

    "I'd say amen, but I'm not a godly man." Roman replied. "I'm glad you have things figured out. I don't think the rest of the Capitol can see very far behind their hundreds of coats of makeup and glossy green hair. We care about the things that matter."

    "Yes." Theo replied. "Well, good night, my friend. I will visit you again tomorrow. With any luck, you'll be on your feet tomorrow."

    "It's not my legs that are hurt, Theo." He smiled. "That's your problem. Good night."

    He stepped from the room, shutting the door softly behind him, careful not to wake the other sleeping patients. One or two nurses were still traversing the halls, clipboards in one hand, syringes in the other, but for the most part, the building was silent. Silent except for the squeaking of his leg brace.

    In one way or another, both of the men cared about the lives of the tributes. Theo cared about their safety and the safety of those down the line. He told himself over and over at night that no one else would die in the Games again. Each night the words became more real and more tangible. Roman cared about how he could use the tributes. He was all about the grandeur of his magnificent show. He hid behind a mask that he called "divine art" and lied to the world, but Theo could tell his heart truly did feel pain in what he did. Maybe there was still time to get him off that track before it got him killed.

    Theo adjusted the tightness of his leg brace and kept going. Still it creaked. This blasted leg of his... He contemplated what would have happened if he had never been crippled. He probably would have been able to get into the Gamemaking program much sooner, away from the judgmental eyes of the panel. He would have gone forth with his plan much sooner. So many lives could have been saved. Maybe he could have even saved his daughter...

    No. That was just wishful thinking. There's no place for that in the Shining City. Theo put on a smile that cut through him like a knife and walked on. Creak, went his leg brace. Creak... Creak... Creak...

    End of Chapter 24

    Alright guys, we're in the final stretch of Book 1 :D there are five chapters left, one for each POV. And then we're onto Book 2: The Hand!

  • Wowzies. We are getting close, guys.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan 67% of readers cho

  • Maybe he could have even saved his daughter..

    Wait, his daughter was in the Games? Omg. Has this been mentioned before? My memory honestly needs a bit of refreshing o_o.

    I honestly can't even put into words how excited I am for Book 2. Yes, yes, and yes! Book one was amazing and I cannot wait for what you've prepared for us in book two. Thank you for doing this fanfic, I love your writing so much <3. You've got me so invested.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan 67% of readers cho

  • edited August 2016

    Fuck I made that unclear didn't I... Well that happens when you're trying to be vague... Theo's daughter wasn't in the Games, but he could have saved her if he hadn't been crippled. I did mention his daughter before, but very subtly.

    And your welcome. :) I'm having fun writing it.

    TWD_stan posted: »

    Maybe he could have even saved his daughter.. Wait, his daughter was in the Games? Omg. Has this been mentioned before? My memory ho

  • Yep. I was worried when I started this that you guys would get mad at me because I was spending too long before they all went to the Capitol haha.

    TheLier posted: »

    Wowzies. We are getting close, guys.

  • It appears I did not manage to comment on the last part in time, though I voted to trust Roman. There's something about him, I don't know what it is, that really makes me think he can be trusted. I even have this strange theory that he might be Schrödinger, though this part kind of made me less sure about it. He has the power to do it of course, but it seems he lacks the motive. Shame, as he was my prime suspect previously. Or maybe he really is Schrödinger and he is simply a lot more cautious than Theo in how he acts against Snow, without trusting anyone else. That is, if Schrödinger even truly acts against Snow. For all we know, it could just be some Capitol asshole who wants to have a good time by manipulating the games. Or maybe, just maybe, it's one of these rebels Roman mentioned, I'd say that is another possibility and I'm curious if I'm right in any way, or wrong entirely.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan 67% of readers cho

  • Haha maybe, maybe not. Everything I wanted to respond to this would have been a spoiler lol.

    It appears I did not manage to comment on the last part in time, though I voted to trust Roman. There's something about him, I don't know wh

  • edited August 2016

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan

    Chapter 25: A New Home

    Penn Cassidy

    There weren't many things Penn was sure of in this life. Ever since she forgot everything, nothing seemed real. Her memories were drifting back into her consciousness slowly, one by one, but she wasn't sure which of them actually happened and which of them were lies. Penn had poured all of her confusion into the hope that the Hunger Games would remind her who she was, but somehow, getting this far managed to separate her farther from herself.

    But Boz was sure of what he was doing. Penn could see it in his eyes. There was so much hate in him that had been hidden before. He had sent Ulysses to die without remorse. He told her that he wouldn't kill her, but just push her very close to the edge. Penn wasn't sure whether she believed him. At least if she died, she could join her boyfriend...

    She screamed as the Peacekeepers took hold of her arm and dragged her down the stair steps towards the center of District Nine. Some of the people on the streets were cheering, and some were booing. Penn wasn't sure whether they knew what was going on. They were just excited something was going to happen. This must happen a lot.

    "You're a monster..." Penn shot an angry glare back at the mayor of the town. He returned it with one of his own.

    "I'm a monster who believes in justice." Mayor Boz replied. He turned to one of the Peacekeepers. "Welfred, string her up. You know what to do."

    "Yessir." The man responded. His voice was harsh and unfeeling. He didn't even care about what was happening.

    Penn fought against her custody as hard as she could, but it was no use. She could feel the tears streaming down her cheeks. At last she accepted the truth. She didn't know what was going on. She didn't know how to fix this. She just wanted to go home. Daddy... Penn wanted to see her daddy again.

    "Don't fight it, girl." Wilfred the Peacekeeper snarled at her. "It'll only make it worse for you!"

    "String her up!" There was a shout from the crowd that carried over the rest of the voices, and then slowly, more voices began to take its place.

    "Take off her head!"

    "She's only a child!"

    "She deserves to die!"

    "Have you no decency?!"

    "Tear her apart!"

    These people... These people were animals. Maybe they had been groomed into being like this by their "loving mayor." Penn didn't understand. District One was full of people who didn't care, but these people were so full of hatred. They didn't even know Penn and they wanted her to die. There was a part of her that was inclined to agree with them.

    Willem rushed forward to stop them. The anger in his eyes was real, and it was in Penn's defense. "Boz, you son of a bitch!" Willem cried as two Peacekeepers took hold of his arms to hold him back. The look of panic he had told her that this had happened before. Maybe he was used to it, being from District Nine. "Just because the pricks at the Capitol decided you could rule us doesn't give you the excuse to brutalize everyone!"

    "Silence, boy." Boz spoke plainly, directing his attention back to Penn. He raised his voice and shouted to the people of his district. "Citizens of District Nine, hear my words! This is Penn Cassidy! One of our own! She has been found guilty of murder and will be sentenced to life in the Hunger Games!" There were cries of outrage and ones beside them that were pleas for mercy. "But that is not how we do things in District Nine! WE PAY FOR DEATH WITH DEATH! Death alongside another murderer..."

    Penn gazed down the hallway the citizens of District Nine had created. The enormous wooden post was not alone anymore. Ulysses stood there screaming, but his screams were muddled in the mass of anger. Peacekeepers tore off his shirt until it hung at his side in tatters and chained his arms together around the pole as far as they would bend.

    "This is madness!" He cried in terror.

    Boz snapped his fingers. One of the Peacekeepers took note and fired a blank into the air, alerting the beginning of what was to come. The people around them inched closer to the man chained to the post, taking whatever they could find in their hand. They started to throw rocks and small stones at him. From the way he struggled, Penn could tell he wanted to blocked the incoming projectiles with his arms, but they were chained. The mob started to creep in closer to him and eventually blocked him out completely from her view. His screams were shrill and piercing, but after five horrible minutes passed they died down, becoming quieter and quieter until there was not a sound but cheering. The crowd backed off of their victim and Penn could get a clear view. There was nothing left but a bloody mass of bones and tissue... If she hadn't seen the man moments before, she wouldn't even know it used to be a person. The Peacekeepers pushed her forward towards the post.

    As Penn was marched through the crowd by the Peacekeepers, they spat at her and cursed at her. They... They didn't even know her... How could they have so much hate for her? Penn left District One to give her life a purpose. Was this her purpose? To die in District Nine?

    The wooden post wasn't very well sanded. It looked like just touching the thing would implant a thousand splinters in her skin. The Peacekeepers shoved her back against the post with great force. She was right. The tiny pieces of wood imbedded by the dozens in her back, making it feel like it was on fire.

    One of the Peacekeepers reached for her collar, but Penn slapped him on the hand to make him stop. He did momentarily, and then nodded to two of his friends, who took her by her wrists and pulled them backwards around the post. It was so uncomfortable, not being able to move her arms. She couldn't protect herself. She couldn't protect herself as the Peacekeeper in front of her took the collar of her blouse and ripped it from her chest, baring all to the people of District Nine.

    The Peacekeeper in front of her took a moment to look up and down her chest. Penn wanted so badly to break her chains and strangle the man with them, but she knew it wouldn't happen. The man laughed as he took the right strap of her bra and ripped that too away from her. He stepped away from Penn and gestured toward her. The men and women of District Nine circled around her, all gawking and laughing at her exposed breasts. And she couldn't cover herself.

    "Girlie..." The Peacekeeper chuckled quietly, tilting his visor up so she could see the bastard's face. "You're a pretty thing, aren't you? Play nice..." He clacked his teeth.

    Penn slowly lifted her head, peering menacingly through the strands of brown hair that had fallen in front of her eyes. "I'm going to kill you..." She uttered.

    "Brave words for a dead girl." The man said. He caressed the side of Penn's chin, lifting her head towards his own. "It's a damn shame to waste such a pretty girl."

    The man's graying hair was greasy and he smelled of garlic. Every time he brought himself closer to her face, Penn wanted to inch backwards, but she couldn't move. The disgusting man leaned in and pressed his lips against hers for a moment. Penn knew when an opportunity was given to her. She lurched toward him and latched her teeth around a piece of his lip and cheek and bit down hard. He was almost instantly screaming in pain. She bit down harder and the chunk of his cheek came clean off.

    As he fell to the ground, clutching the side of his face, Boz appeared behind him. His eyes were full of fury. Penn spit out the piece of the man's cheek on the ground in front of the mayor. Blood and saliva dripped down her chin and onto her bare chest, but she didn't care. As much of an asshole as Boz was, he was the only one around who wasn't looking at her boobs.

    One of the Peacekeepers lifted up the butt of his gun and brought it down hard on the side of Penn's head, making her yelp in pain. Almost instantly after, Boz reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a small handgun, firing two shots into the Peacekeeper's kneecaps. "Not yet!" He screamed after he smoke cleared.

    "But sir!" He shouted in pain. "She-"

    "I know what she did!" He shouted, holstering his weapon. "It was justified..."

    He turned to Penn, and the look in his eye said he cared, but Penn knew he didn't. The man was hard to read. One minute he was furious and the next minute he was calm. Penn snarled at him. "I thought you said you weren't going to hurt me? What is the Capitol going to think?"

    "I considered it..." Boz replied. "I considered it for a good long while, but I have decided against. Whatever the Capitol will do to me is a small price to pay for justice served. I've done what I can for you, Ms. Cassidy. I hope that you appreciate that whatever family you still have is now under my protection."

    "I don't have anyone..." Penn replied. She had her father, but there was no way Jomal would want anything to do with her anymore... "I'm completely alone..."

    "I'm sorry to hear that, I really am." He sighed. Penn didn't believe him. "But it doesn't excuse murder. Do you have any last words to say? I promise, I will let you be heard. You wanted that didn't you? You want the world to know your face? Well now's your chance."

    Penn wanted that... But not like this... Not anything like this...

  • edited August 2016

    So here's a fantasy cast list I made. :D It's not the greatest, but why not?

    Theo - Keanu Reeves

    enter image description here

    Aura - Marie Avgeropolous

    enter image description here

    Saul - Tyler James Williams

    enter image description here

    Marten - Lucas Till

    enter image description here

    Penn - Maika Monroe

    enter image description here

    Roman - Peter Dinklage

    enter image description here

    President Snow - Neil Patrick Harris

    enter image description here

    Rowan - Billy Burke

    enter image description here

    Crispin - Ian Somerhalder

    enter image description here

    Peara - Man I looked everywhere and there aren't that many albino actors or actresses, and even less that are 12 or 13 years old. :\

    Munrow - Andre Braugher

    enter image description here

    Willy - Nicola Peltz

    enter image description here

    Bishoppe - Tim Roth

    enter image description here

    Jomal - Jeremy Renner

    enter image description here

    Boz - Daniel Craig

    enter image description here

    Feel free to share your own ideas!

  • Omg Penn's a bad bitch, damn. She showed that Peacekeeper! I'm even more impressed o-o. District 9's brutal af I feel so bad for her omg ;-;

    I chose to stay silent.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan Chapter 25: A New

  • Ooh, these are perfect! Cant wait for the rest of the characters' fantasy cast list :3!

    Also, I did a lil bit of googling for Peara's part and I found someone that may pass as a 12-13 year old. enter image description hereHer names Ava clarke and she's a child model ^^

    So here's a fantasy cast list I made. It's not the greatest, but why not? Theo - Keanu Reeves Aura - Marie Avgeropolous

  • Ah there we go! That's perfect!

    TWD_stan posted: »

    Ooh, these are perfect! Cant wait for the rest of the characters' fantasy cast list ! Also, I did a lil bit of googling for Peara's part and I found someone that may pass as a 12-13 year old. Her names Ava clarke and she's a child model ^^

  • Yeah. I hope she's starting to come around. It's not official until Liquid sees it lol.

    TWD_stan posted: »

    Omg Penn's a bad bitch, damn. She showed that Peacekeeper! I'm even more impressed o-o. District 9's brutal af I feel so bad for her omg ;-; I chose to stay silent.

  • edited August 2016

    Argh... this is the first part that makes me feel slightly conflicted for Penn. I'll be damned, but a part of me still thinks she fucking deserves this. She basically murdered a child, not in cold blood or to survive, like the people in the games will do, but out of her own carelessness and arrogance and that makes her the worst. If there's one thing that triggers just about all of my red flags, it's a completely pointless and avoidable killing by accident, which, as a result, I see as similarly irredeemable as cold-blooded murder. Sure, she feels horrible for it, but I can't help but think that she deserves to feel horrible for it. At the same time... man, the District 9 people are fucked up. That much I can say for sure, I hate them more than Penn at this point and I particularly hate Boz. I have this weird mixture of hatred and pity for Penn. I'm not sure I'm ever not wanting her dead, but I don't know if I truly want her to die like this. Though, considering that Ulysses died like this because of her... it's hard, it's seriously hard and I feel conflicted for the very first time, if just a little bit. Still, her whole original motivation to find out who she truly is by screwing everyone over to join the games makes her a complete retard no matter how I feel.

    As for the choice, I do wonder what Boz is going to do. His actions protected her from an untimely death, while his words basically implied that he has decided to kill her regardless. But I don't think Boz is going to kill her, which gives me something of a bad feeling for whatever he has planned. Because damn it, he has something planned and if its not death, I don't think even Penn deserves it. Ultimately, I decided to spit on the ground. I can't even tell you if I chose it because it might anger Boz or because it would give Penn an almost admirable sort of defiance in the face of almost certain death. Maybe both? Yeah, it's probably both. You got me to a point where I don't feel entirely hateful towards Penn anymore and that makes it harder for me to choose in her future parts.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan Chapter 25: A New

  • edited August 2016

    Haha there you are... This is what I'm trying to do with her, just create a character that just completely fucks with people's sense of anger and pity.

    I love your longass rants about Penn.

    Argh... this is the first part that makes me feel slightly conflicted for Penn. I'll be damned, but a part of me still thinks she fucking de

  • That is amazing! Just amazing. I love fantasy casting stuff and now that you have started, I have to admit that it actually changed the way I imagine some characters while reading. I haven't seen Neil Patrick Harris as Snow before, as for some reason I imagined Snow as even younger looking in this story, though I can't deny that he'd look awesome for the role. The others... well, Rowan and Crispin look incredible. Billy Burke would make an amazing Rowan and Ian Somerhalder got this certain unsettling glare Crispin has. For Aura, I wasn't sure who could play her, but Marie Avgeropolous looks very much like I imagined her and since she plays one of my favourites in The 100, I'm very happy with that choice. She also looks similar enough to Billy Burke to play his daughter and she's got that piercing stare I have imagined Aura with. Which is actually something she has in mind with Crispin, come to think of it. Peter Dinklage as Roman is obviously the best choice and I have to admit that while I have never heard of Andrew Braugher before, he looks just about exactly like I pictured Munrow while reading. Perhaps the only guy I have depicted as completely different would be Saul. Tyler James Williams is a great actor for sure, but I have imagined Saul as really buff and kinda intimidating in his looks. I don't know if he has been described that way, but it's how I imagined him in every single part so far. The first actor that came to mind would be John Boyega from the new Star Wars movie, who clearly has a far broader frame than Tyler James Williams:

    enter image description here

    So here's a fantasy cast list I made. It's not the greatest, but why not? Theo - Keanu Reeves Aura - Marie Avgeropolous

  • I was thinking about John Boyega yeah, but he looks a lot older.

    That is amazing! Just amazing. I love fantasy casting stuff and now that you have started, I have to admit that it actually changed the way

  • True he does, even though they are at roughly the same age. I guess he can pull off a 17 years old guy though, considering that there are many in their late teens who look older than they actually are. Jennifer Lawrence in the movies certainly doesn't look like a 17 years old Katniss, though she's amazing enough that no one minds.

    I was thinking about John Boyega yeah, but he looks a lot older.

  • edited August 2016

    I think everyone just accepts that everyone in the movies is older than they're actually saying because it's really hard to find teenage actors.

    This actually may eventually become a reality, since I'm going to be going into film to be a director, so maybe I'll eventually be asked to write a Hunger Games spinoff? That would be awesome. Although this would work much better in TV show form.

    I agree about Tyler James Williams though. I couldnt seem to find someone that fit the picture I had of him in my head.

    God now that I think about it I guess Neil Patrick Harris is a bit old for the role. Damn... He would have been perfect. Maybe in a theoretical Season 2, after a long time jump. Any ideas who could replace him? I'm not coming up with anything.

    True he does, even though they are at roughly the same age. I guess he can pull off a 17 years old guy though, considering that there are ma

  • This actually may eventually become a reality, since I'm going to be going into film to be a director, so maybe I'll eventually be asked to write a Hunger Games spinoff? That would be awesome. Although this would work much better in TV show form.

    That would be amazing, go for it! And I agree, it would work better as a TV show, with each of the books as a season.

    God now that I think about it I guess Neil Patrick Harris is a bit old for the role. Damn... He would have been perfect. Maybe in a theoretical Season 2, after a long time jump. Any ideas who could replace him? I'm not coming up with anything.

    True, Neil Patrick Harris is in his mid-forties after all. He'd be perfect for a middle-aged Snow, but I guess the one you have here is about thirty, right? Hm, might be a bitch of a stretch, but how about Tom Felton, the guy who played Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter series? He looks not unlike Neil Patrick Harris and he certainly can play a great villain.

    I think everyone just accepts that everyone in the movies is older than they're actually saying because it's really hard to find teenage act

  • edited August 2016

    Oh yeah Tom Felton would be good. The Snow in the books right now is around 25.

    And yeah, I think it would work much better as a TV show. Remember the backlash when Mockingjay didn't have the Hunger Games in it? Imagine two movies of buildup to the Hunger Games and what kind of backlash that would have lol

    This actually may eventually become a reality, since I'm going to be going into film to be a director, so maybe I'll eventually be asked to

  • edited August 2016

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan

    50% of readers chose to [B. Spit on the ground.]

    Penn conjured up her spit in her mouth and shot it onto the ground in a milky red mass at the feet of Mayor Boz. She expected the fury in his eyes to grow white hot, but he shocked her. He laughed, and then kept laughing... The anger was gone... "Oh Ms. Cassidy..." He laughed. "It's such a shame to waste you. You got spunk..."

    "Why are you doing this?" Penn asked him, her lip starting to quiver, blood dripping onto the ground. "One of your men is on the ground bleeding from the legs and another bleeding from the face. You're about to kill me after I offered to take a place in your Hunger Games. If you kill me, you have to give another of your citizens. Just cut your losses!"

    "I'm killing you after you murdered a young girl in cold blood." He shook his head. "Do you not understand that?"

    Penn's lip started quivering. She didn't expect it, but tears began to gush from her eyes. The more she tried to hold them back, the more she sobbed. There was so much fear and anger inside her. She couldn't handle it. She thought she could... She thought she was different, and that she was tougher, but now, as she was chained to her deathbed, baring her chest to the world, she couldn't help but let the dam break. "Please, just... Don't- Don't kill me!"

    "You're pathetic..." He snarled. He turned around and shouted to the people around the circle. They were bloodthirsty. Some were licking their lips. Some were already picking up rocks to stone her with. Penn could barely see them through the tears in her eyes. "District Nine!" He shouted. "WE WILL TOLERATE NO CRIME! WE WILL BE A BEACON OF PURITY AND JUSTICE AMONG OUR ELEVEN BROTHERS. FOLLOW ME AND-!"

    He was interrupted when there was the sound of something swinging through the air. Penn looked to where it came from and saw the tail of a long arrow a couple feet to her left. Boz picked it up in confusion, examining the steel arrowhead. It glimmered when the reflection hit Penn's eyes.

    There was a slip of paper wrapped tautly around the frame of the arrow, and Boz didn't wait before unraveling it like a scroll. The crowd fell in silence around them. "Let those without sin throw the first stone..." Boz read just quietly enough for Penn to hear him. "You do not wish to see what happens when you reap the Hawk's prey..."

    The Hawk? Who was the Hawk? Penn hadn't heard the moniker before. It was menacing, and Penn knew the arrow with his name on it hadn't fallen by accident. It was placed there... And then there was a second arrow... Right through Herman Boz's skull.

    As his body tumbled to the ground silently, the crowd's uproar was deafening. All Peacekeepers in the area held up their rifles in different directions, frantically aiming for nothing. No one knew where the bolt had come from. But... No one was aiming for Penn anymore.

    And then there was the explosion. It was far behind Penn, but its force still blew her hair all over her face. Citizens were scrambling left and right trying to escape the rubble that was falling around them. The explosion was so loud and everyone was so terrified by it that not many people even noticed the dead body of their mayor lying on the ground in front of Penn. In the sky, Penn spotted a small drone circling above her like a vulture. The Peacekeepers noticed it too and began to fire upon it, but as soon as they did, it started to jet... Right towards the Justice Building.

    It collided with the giant pillar of marble that was the City Hall and let out a small pillar of smoke. Not long after, there was a second explosion, engulfing the Justice Building in a fiery inferno, when the smoke cleared, what was left of the building was up in flames, and pieces of stone were crumbling down to the ground below. Not again... Penn had heard the stories of District 13... She was right in the middle of it.

    But... The Peacekeepers nor any of the citizens of District Nine were paying her any mind. That's when she felt a hand cover her mouth. Before she could scream for help, the man who it belonged to stepped out from behind the pillar. It was... No...

    It was Penn's father.

    He didn't look angry... He didn't look scared... Just disappointment, though Penn could barely see it behind the hood he draped over his head. He reached into his backpack and grabbed something that looked like scissors... No. Bolt cutters. He lifted them to Penn's chains and sawed through them, though she could barely see it through the tears.

    "Shh... We have to go." Jomal spoke, draping a blanket over her so she could be covered. "There's no time to explain..."

    "I'm sorry, daddy..." She cried and fell into his arms. It felt like she was surrounded by home. She couldn't remember anything, but he made her feel like she didn't have to. She buried her face in his shoulder as he picked her up and started to carry her through the crowd of panicking people. "I'm so sorry. I shouldn't have..."

    "I know you are..." Just hearing his voice was so relieving. So much had happened in the last twenty-four hours that she hadn't had time to think about what she was doing. Her father was a gift... She should never have thrown him away like that. She felt his bearded face against her as he kissed her cheek. Penn had lost her memory, but now she wished she could lose more of it. She just wanted to be home... She wanted everything to go back the way it was.

    "Daddy... Daddy..."

    "Everything's going to be okay, sweetie." Jomal whispered into her ear. "You're with me now."

    Penn didn't watch for the rest of the time her father carried her. She had so many questions, but now was not the time for them, and she didn't care. Daddy was back... That's all she cared about. From the sound around them, Jomal had made it out of the crowd and out of the city. The brushing of the tall grass made that clear.

    When he set her down, Penn wiped away the water from her eyes and looked at the man. Parts of his face and chest were painted in blood. "Hey, kid..." He sighed.

    "Dad..." She began to tear up again, but stopped herself. "I killed someone... And then they killed Dray... They were going to- Oh god!" She couldn't help herself, letting her tears leak again.

    "Shh..." He wrapped her in his arms, and kissed her on the top of the head. "I told you not to go."

    "I know, but-" Her questions finally outweighed her trauma. "Where did you come from? How did you do that?"

    "No one was hurt..." Jomal answered her. "I just needed to create a distraction. Well, no one was hurt except the shithead mayor."


    "As for how I got here, you really think I'd let you sneak out without following you?" He raised his eyebrow. "I've been exploring outside the fence for years now. You didn't make it very discreet. You were leaving tracks all over the damn place."

    She laughed through the tears. He had followed her. The Penn from this morning would have told him off for it. She thought that it would interfere with her destiny, but she knew better now. She was different after seeing death first hand. After Willem had explained it to him, Penn didn't see it the same way anymore.

    "But, I'm not being completely honest with you." Jomal said as he withdrew his backpack and pulled an extra shirt from it. When Penn pulled it over her chest, she knew it didn't fit but she didn't care. It smelled like home. "I followed you here because I care about you... But I was also sent here."

    "By the Hawk?" She asked, and then something clicked in her mind. "Are you the Hawk?"

    "No..." He laughed for a minute. "But I fight for him. I don't expect you to get it all at once, but I expect you to clean yourself up before the helicopter gets here."

    "The helicopter?" She asked, wiping a separate tear from her cheek. "What helicopter."

    "The one that's going to pick you up and take you to the Capitol. What happened here in District Nine was a shit show, but the Capitol and Snow are on your side. The attack was ordered."

    "I'm still going?" A surge of fear ran through her spine. "I thought you were going to rescue me. I don't want to go anymore."

    "Penn..." He said. "I don't want you in the Games, but I have to finish the job that was started. Just remember one thing. Don't tell anyone-and I mean ANYONE, that you are from One. I love you, and my number one goal is still to protect you, but I can't do that unless you're in the Capitol."

    "But, what, I-?"

    "Shh!" He said, putting his finger up to Penn's lips. "I don't have time to explain it all. Don't ask questions, just listen. I need you to trust me. Can you trust me?"

    "Yes." The answer came instinctively. This man may be the last in the world that Penn could say she trusted completely.

    "Good." He replied. "Is the other tribute safe? The boy?"

    "Willem? I think so." She said. "Boz didn't have any problem with him."

    "That's good. That's very good..." He was speaking frantically. "He should still get on the train as usual then. Can you keep a secret, Penn?"

    "Of course."

    "Do. Not. Mention the Hawk to anyone. Don't unless they directly address you about him, and maybe not even them. He likes to stay in the shadows, unseen."

    "Who is the Hawk?"

    "I can't tell you that..." He bit his lip. "Not yet." Penn could hear the wings of the helicopter cutting through the air already. It was around a mile away, barely visible from where they stood. "Listen, Penn... I can't come with you."

    "But I want you to come!" She took him by the arm.

    "I'll meet you in the Capitol..." He replied. "Yes I can get there. I've always been able to get there. I'm not the man you think I am, Penn..."

    "You're my father." Penn cried. "That's all I need you to be."

    He chose not to respond, and Penn could see the tears in his eyes. She could see that it hurt him very much to leave right after they just met again. "That chopper will take you to the point where Snow has ordered it to. You are still District Nine's tribute. You wanted a chance to prove yourself, well... It's here now."

    "I didn't know what I was getting into..." She pleaded.

    "Yes you did. Somewhere deep down, you did. Maybe you didn't think it would hurt everyone around you, but it did. You can't take that back now. Being sorry doesn't heal a bullet wound." He shrugged. "Just focus on trying to fix what you can. You can still survive this, Penn."

    The words hurt, but she knew they were true. Everything that she had done was her fault. Maybe she didn't understand fully, but she had still chosen to throw that knife... Maybe this world would have been better if she died when she fell into that ravine rather than losing her memory.

    The helicopter descended upon their location, growing louder and louder as it came closer. It was solid white all the way around, with no insignias anywhere: the signature mark of the Capitol. It's doors slid in as it landed in the grass, and there was a bald man inside with a tattoo of a snake where his hair used to be. Despite the appearance, he was smiling and was very friendly. "The Hawk sends his regards!" He shouted to Jomal over the chopping of the helicopter blades. He looked to Penn and made a gesture similar to tipping his hat, though he didn't have one. "And I assume this is Ms. Cassidy? The world's going up in flames because of you!"

    Penn crossed her arms over her bloodstained shirt and inched towards the man who extended his hand. She leaned back towards her father and hugged him one last time. "I don't think I ever told you goodbye..." She said.

    "You don't have to." Jomal replied, planting a kiss on her forehead. "I know you well enough."

    She stepped towards the helicopter and took the man's hand to step up into the frame of the vehicle. The interior seemed cold... Not what she was used to seeing from Capitol machinery. There were seats and there was the pilot's cabin. There was nothing in the helicopter that didn't need to be there. Perhaps this wasn't the Capitol's.

    "Take care of her, you hear?" Jomal called to the man in the copter. "She's important!"

    "You can count on me!" He responded, though as they were lifting off the ground, it was growing harder and harder to hear.

    Jomal waved at her and she waved back. And then he turned, put his backpack on and walked in the direction of the horizon. She didn't want him to leave... He just came back into Penn's life, and she knew very well that might be the last time she ever saw him, and she didn't take that lightly this time... She soaked up every moment she could to look down towards her father, yet it wasn't enough. The doors slid closed. Daddy... Come back...

    "Relax, girl!" The bald man gave her a pat on the back and sat in the passenger seat. "Welcome home!"

    End of Chapter 25

  • edited August 2016

    It is starting to make sense, when you said that the D12 tributes might not be without chance...

    I will state the obvious, I think the games will be rigged, in a major way.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan 50% of readers cho

  • Don't tell anyone-and I mean ANYONE, that you are from Nine.

    Did you mean to type One instead of nine? ;o

    Anyways, wonderful part. I wasn't expecting that at all. Boz's death and the return of Penn's father had me shook tbh. I 100% feel so bad for Penn right now like honestly, she doesn't want to participate in the games anymore but now she has no choice and that's just heartbreaking ): Hopefully she makes it far. Unless she targets Skeeter, then it's off with her head!

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan 50% of readers cho

  • Oh yeah that's what I meant. Thanks for spotting that.

    TWD_stan posted: »

    Don't tell anyone-and I mean ANYONE, that you are from Nine. Did you mean to type One instead of nine? ;o Anyways, wonderful part

  • Yes they will be.

    TheLier posted: »

    It is starting to make sense, when you said that the D12 tributes might not be without chance... I will state the obvious, I think the games will be rigged, in a major way.

  • Wait, what is going on? Holy shit, that was unexpected. Holy shit! And the Hawk again... After what Jomal said in this part, it appears the Hawk is affiliated with Snow, which would make sense considering that only complete pieces of shit, like Munrow or Penn are currently known to be his allies. Then there is Schrödinger and the Owl, who might be the same person and who have a yet unknown connection to the Hawk. Considering that the Hawk is siding with Snow, I wonder if they are against him.

    Damn, I felt bad for Boz in this part, even if he was a grade-A asshole. He was so close to do one good thing in life, but died before he could even achieve that. Of course, I still hate him for killing the entirely innocent Ulysses, but I wish he could have at least avenged poor Emmy. Speaking of, I don't even want to know how many additional lives Penn ruined on this day. She might as well be a serial killer by now. Hell, she's even obnoxious when she feels guilty, because it feels more like she regrets how she screwed up her own life beyond saving and not how she screwed up every single person around her and got most of them killed. There's not a word or thought of regret for the people she murdered and that's why I just don't buy that she genuinely feels like the piece of shit she is. Nah, to conclude this, I hate Penn just a little bit less, but she has gone way beyond the point where she has to die and by now, she simply does not deserve to live. I still hope she dies in the bloodbath, but she can die painlessly now for all I care.

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan 50% of readers cho

  • edited August 2016

    Lol your rants about Penn are the best fucking thing. Just to confirm one thing, Schrodinger and the Owl are the same person. I meant that to be more clear in Chapter 6.

    And while I see where you're coming from about Penn, I think it's a bit harsh to call her a serial killer. The only thing she did with the wrong intention was leave District 1. Throwing the knife kind of set the train in motion, but killing Emmy was an accident and thus everything that happened after was a result of said accident.

    Wait, what is going on? Holy shit, that was unexpected. Holy shit! And the Hawk again... After what Jomal said in this part, it appears the

  • edited August 2016

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan

    Chapter 26: To Die With

    Marten Lewis

    Was Marten going crazy? He didn't cry at death anymore. Death fascinated him, and scared him, but he didn't feel any emotion past that. What scared him more than anything was that he didn't feel anything for Ronn or for Poole. When he thought about them, it was just empty. Maybe it made him a better tribute, but not a better man.

    Marten found himself staring at the back of Delmara's head as she spoke with Mags and Bishoppe. He couldn't help but dwell on the fact that in a week, she may very well not be here. And knowing that, how could Marten even speak to her? In seven days, she could be the one driving an axe into his sternum. Or he could be he one to gut her with a spear. It seemed like she didn't even care. Or maybe she wasn't thinking about it. But how could she not?

    The train was moving so fast, but unless Marten peeked from the window, there was no way to tell. He had never moved so fast in his life. It was like riding in a car, but smoother... Smoother and nicer. He watched as glistening lakes passed by, beautiful ones, and then tall mountains that reached into the carpet of clouds, and then miles upon miles of nothing... Just grassland and flat plains. It was in these moments where nothing was happening outside that shook him awake from his trance. It was hard to focus on grass.

    "So... Marten." Delmara smiled, sitting down next to him on the couch. He could smell the wine on her breath and knew that she was drunk. "What's your story? Our escort called you a murderer. That's cool..."

    "It's not cool." He sneered. "It's terrible. How can you say that? A man is dead."

    "Whoa, whoa." She laughed raising her arms in the air. "I was just trying to make conversation. I think I've seen you around town before."

    "Four's a big District." Marten said, avoiding eye contact. "It was probably someone else."

    "No." She replied. "I make it my business to know everyone. I think I've seen you. Maybe you were on the news?"

    "Yeah that's most likely it."

    "It's not everyday you meet someone as large as yourself." Marten shot her a mean look and she laughed. "Whoa there, hot shot. I meant it more as a compliment." She patted him on the arm, feeling his bicep. "You're a fucking giant. You're going to slaughter them in the arena."

    "Yeah, whatever." He turned his head back to the window.

    "Oh wait, you're from that famous family on the edge of town! The fishing business one..." Marten was surprised that she knew about his family. They certainly weren't famous. Well, not before this... "What's your name... Lester? Starts with an L."

    "Lewis." He replied plainly. "And yeah, my Grandad owned one of the largest fishing businesses in Four."

    "He must be a lucky man."

    "He's dead."


    There was an awkward silence between the two of them, but Delmara still sat next to him for the next few minutes. It was obvious she wanted to continue the conversation, but that was the last thing Marten wanted to do. He didn't want to make attachments to anyone anymore... Not with them so close to the end of their lives. "I like your hat..." She said, tipping it down to read the label. "Lewis' Family Tackle... You know they don't allow those in the arena?"

    "What?" He asked, meeting her navy blue eyes for the first time.

    "Yeah. The Capitol thinks hats provide a sort of armor..." She laughed and then she hiccuped. "Ain't that dumb as fuck? Like what hat is going to stop a falling machete or an arrow? Typical white collar assholes..."

    "It's my token." He told her.

    "Hm..." She replied. She hadn't thought of that. "Well, you can run it past them. I don't know... Are you a Career? Can't tell by looking at you."

    "What? No."

    She smiled. "You can always assume the tributes from One and Two are gonna be Careers, but the ones from Four are usually half and half. I couldn't tell with you. I mean, the District picked us out of the lot this year; there must have been a reason. I won the election in the Career Department. I reckon they took you because of your past?"

    "Yeah..." He shrugged. "Eliminating a stain, I guess."

    He felt a strong slap across the cheek, followed by a hiccup. "You ain't a stain." She told him. "You, um... You... I don't care bout your record. Doesn't mean you shouldn't be here."

    Marten smiled on the side of his lips she couldn't see. "Thanks."

    There was the sound of rapping on a glass and Marten turned to see Marc Bishoppe standing in the center of he car repeatedly tapping his wine glass with a spoon. "Here, here!" He called. "I propose a toast!"

    "What? What's that?" Delmara asked. Marten raised an eyebrow, having not heard of it either.

    "Really?" Bishoppe laughed, and almost fell down in his drunkenness. "Oh... I keep forgetting you people in Four don't often have access to the finer drinks... Wouldn't have any reason to continue a tradition that you weren't able to keep up with."

    Mags just smiled in a kind way, taking another sip of her wine. "I find it less and less plausible each year that you forget these things."

    Bishoppe frowned for a moment, but then brought the glass of wine back up in the air. "A toast is where we all go back and forth, sharing words of wisdom or... Of encouragement... And then we drink to them."

    "Why do you need an occasion to drink?" Delmara laughed.

    "Oh I like her." Bishoppe pointed in her direction. "Well I suppose I'll start. I have served as the escort to District Four for ten wonderful years, and-"

    "Nine." Mags interrupted him. "You weren't here last year."

    "Nine wonderful years." He shook his head. "I've seen so many wonderful boys and girls travel through this train, and... Um, I've watched many of their lives come to completion. I think that there is something beautiful about that, you know? To be friends with someone until the end... And in light of the holidays rapidly approaching, I would like to say to the both of you, Delmara and Marten, that I'm sure you are both grand young people." He smiled as if he had just given out an amazing compliment, but why didn't it feel like that?

    "Now, The Hunger Games are not for the faint of heart. It doesn't take a smart man to understand that..." He laughed again at a joke that wasn't funny. "I believe it is a very admirable thing to do, to give your lives to ensure that the peace of our great nation of Panem remains intact. So I figure... Fuck it! Why not make these days the best of your life?"

    "Woo!" Delmara shouted in excitement, raising her arms in the air. She seemed to forget she had a beverage and some spilled onto her shirt. "I'll go next. Um..."

    "It comes from the heart." Bishoppe replied, gesturing to his own. Marten wondered if they knew how dumb they sounded when they were drunk. Maybe that was it. Maybe the whole Capitol was drunk... all the time...

    "Well, uh... I grew up not having very much to my name. I didn't come from the Capitol like you Marc... Or grow up in a wealthy family like Marten. My family ate whatever we could find... Sometimes from the trash." Delmara took another sip of her wine, followed by a scornful look from Bishoppe. "So I guess it's not a surprise that I learned how to forage... Make my own food. It wasn't until last year I realized I was spending practically all my time in the woods with no one around... And, um... I guess I kind of liked it there. No one could get to me... It felt like no one could hurt me while I was fending for myself. I didn't have to follow the rules of society when I went out by myself. The forest has no laws..."

    "Indeed it doesn't." He replied.

    "So, uh... I guess I learned something there." She raised her glass to the ceiling, but Bishoppe put it back down near her. "Hardship makes us stronger... We won't gain anything by backing down..."

    "Very well said, my dear." Bishoppe smiled. "And you, Mags? What do you wish to say?"

    Mags sighed, tapping her chin with one of her fingers. She had a kind of wistful air about her, like she always had her head in the clouds. "Me? I've been the mentor to kids like you for a couple years here. If I'm being honest, being a victor is where I met some of my closest friends. We're a very tight-knit group, you know. And... I wish you both could be here with me in a week's time. You both seem like such lovely children."

    "Thank you, Mags." He replied. There was something about the way she said it. Marten felt like she was forcing herself to talk prim and proper like Marc was. She played it off well. Maybe it came with practice. "And you, Marten?"

    "Hm?" He asked, caught off guard.

    "What do you have to add to our elegant toast?"

    He shook his head. "Oh, I don't drink."

    Bishoppe scoffed. "Is that a joke? You don't drink..." He began to pour a small cup of wine upon noticing Marten had none. "I've never heard something more laughable in my life. Join in our toast, Marten. Let us drink and be merry. We have our lives ahead of us.

  • I have to agree with TeamKennyW00T. Your rants about Penn are the best thing ever.

    Wait, what is going on? Holy shit, that was unexpected. Holy shit! And the Hawk again... After what Jomal said in this part, it appears the

  • edited August 2016

    I honestly don't know whether Delmara's trustworthy enough to be Marten's ally. She seems so two-faced.. Anyways, I chose to join in on the toast. You're going to be with these people until the very end and you sure as hell don't want to come off as a stubborn party pooper as your first impression Marten ;P. (Plus, I'm curious as to what he'll say)

    And omg we're so close to book two. HYPE!

    @mr.quality @janitor @supersagig @UkilledKenny @AAA_Jane @xSensus @WildlingKing @LiquidChicagoTed @TheLier @TWD_stan Chapter 26: To Die

  • Two down, three to go!

    TWD_stan posted: »

    I honestly don't know whether Delmara's trustworthy enough to be Marten's ally. She seems so two-faced.. Anyways, I chose to join in on the

  • And while I see where you're coming from about Penn, I think it's a bit harsh to call her a serial killer. The only thing she did with the wrong intention was leave District 1. Throwing the knife kind of set the train in motion, but killing Emmy was an accident and thus everything that happened after was a result of said accident.

    Well, it kind of narrows down to the same thing. Serial killers destroy lots of lives. Penn destroys lots of lives. The motivation behind it is less important than the fact that their actions are the exact same. Besides, both motivations are equally despicable. Serial killers do it for fun, Penn does it because she completely lacks any sort of empathy for every person beyond herself, like a sociopath. I mean, she already killed more people than most tributes ever do and she did it before the games even start. And her killing Emmy was a little bit more than an accident. She wanted to show off her skills so badly that she simply did not care if she'd get someone killed. And even though she did this utterly horrible thing, she still felt more sorry for her own ruined life than for Emmy, or Ulysses or even Dray. This sort of self-pity and a complete lack of self-reflection make her the worst. That said, I must admit that I can't fully blame her for Boz' death, he had it coming as much as she has it coming. I just hope she doesn't make it far in the games, because she honestly took enough lives already.

    Lol your rants about Penn are the best fucking thing. Just to confirm one thing, Schrodinger and the Owl are the same person. I meant that t

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