Chapter One

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~~ Bryony ~~

Katniss Everdeen - the Mockingjay. She brought unity and peace to all the districts, abolishing the annual Hunger Games, where 24 tributes, a boy and girl from each of the twelve districts, battled it out to the death.

In the past couple of months since, we have established a system. Now we all help each other, the mysterious District 13 included. The Capitol provides clothes, wigs and make-up, not that any of that is really needed.

Katniss stands on the stage now, cameras pointing at her to project the announcement all over Panem. She looks like an angel in a plain, white dress, surrounded by stern-looking bodyguards. The current president, Paylor, takes most official announcements, but Katniss does all of the announcements related to the Games (although she refused to have anything to do with the government at first). It is this, more than anything, that makes me more nervous than usual as I watch her speak.

"Welcome Panem." There is a fire in her eyes that I haven't seen since the rebellion, and I remember, not for the first time, how much she has gone through to get here.

"Since the Hunger Games ended last year, many people in the districts are feeling that the Capitol isn't getting enough punishment for just sitting like ducks, watching twenty-three children a year get slaughtered. My fellow victors and I have thought very heavily on the matter, and we have come to a decision."

Katniss pauses for a moment, to let that sink in. I can almost hear the whole of Panem wondering what this 'decision' could possibly be.

"Twenty-four Capitol children, all related in some way to influential and powerful people before the rebellions, will take part in a final Hunger Games. These children have already been chosen by my fellow victors, colleagues and I." She gestures to President Paylor, who is standing to the side of the stage. She looks very serious, from her stony gaze to her dark hair and stiff black suit.

As Paylor steps up to the stage, I can't catch my thoughts as they race across my mind.

This is what the whole rebellion was to stop. They can't have another Games.

My uncle was vice-president of Panem.

The chances of me going into the arena are huge...

I brush my sweaty hands against my dress, panicking, although I can't help but feel like the Capitol deserves this.

Paylor slowly pulls a piece of paper from her pocket. She begins to read the names out, and with each word my heart hammers harder. After years of watching tributes get slaughtered in the Games each year, being forced to go into the arena itself is possibly the worst punishment someone from the Capitol could be given.

If twenty-four children, all from the Capitol, are chosen for these Games, and my uncle was vice-president of Panem, it's almost inevitable that I will be forced to take part in the Games. So when I hear my name, I'm not surprised, although you can probably see the fear on my face.

"Bryony Price, the niece of Vice President Price."

Frankly, I'm terrified. Who wouldn't be? I can barely keep a thought in my head for longer than a second.

I'm going into the arena. To fight to the death. I will most probably be dead in less than a month.

The thought almost knocks me out.

From the beginning, I was always against the Games. They are cruel and heartless, and I hate myself for not doing anything to stop them. But I was just scared. Scared I would die for rebelling. I was selfish.

Now I know how those twenty-four tributes felt, every single year. The Capitol...we are so cruel. We deserve this. We all do, for not putting a stop to these Games.

I'm too busy fretting for my own selfish soul to listen to any of the other names. But the last one stands out. Probably because I have heard the name called out millions of times.

They were obviously saving the best until last.

"Celestia Snow, the granddaughter of President Snow."

Most people in the districts will be nodding their heads in agreement - Celestia Snow is the perfect person to finally pay the Capitol back for what they have done. Pay President Snow himself back for what he has done. Obviously taking the President's life wasn't enough.

But I don't think that.

I know Celestia. Probably better than she does herself.

She's my best friend.

We have been through thick and thin together - she's like the sister I was never born with. I have cried on her shoulder through all of my tough times, and she has done the same on mine.

And at least one of us has just been handed a death sentence - for even if we are extremely lucky, only one of us can come out of that arena alive.

Author's note:
What do you think to the first chapter? I know that it is quite short, but they will get a bit longer!

Was there anything in particular you liked? Or alternatively was there anything you didn't?

Please vote/comment if you want enjoyed this chapter! Thanks for reading!

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