District 6 Reaping
I wait by the door anxiously... my mother should be home from work by now. The reapings are soon.
Five minutes go by.
Before I know it, a whole half hour goes by an my mother still isn't home from work.
I'm about to go out and find her when I hear a knock at my door. I go to open it, and I see two Peacekeepers... I recognize the older one as Severus, the one who's always looking to punish someone, but I don't recognize the younger one. Maybe he's a new apprentice.
"Good day, sir." I say, giving a small curtsy. The younger one smiles at me, but Severus only gives me a curt nod.
"Are you Mariah Wilkinson's daughter?"
"Yessir." I say politely. "But she's not here right now..."
"I know she's not." Severus says pointedly. He reaches into his pocket and pulls out a small piece of paper. "This should explain everything. Kai, we must go."
The younger Peacekeeper- Kai, apparently- follows him, closing the door.
I examine the letter:
Dear Sir or Ma'am-
Ms. Mariah Wilkinson has been arrested. She has been caught stealing several dollars worth of expensive goods. The punishment has not yet been decided, but it will be extreme. She will be at the reaping, as it is illegal not to attend.
John Ratcliffe, Mayor of District Six.
My family was poor, but we managed to hide it well. I never had friends come over, and I always made sure my sisters and me looked presentable. Now that my mother was caught stealing goods, this practically screamed that we were poor.
I groaned, crumpling the letter up and throwing it in a trashcan.
"What's wrong, Karen?"
I was greeted by my three sisters: Aria, Danica and Carissa.
"Oh, ah..." I think of an excuse, "It's nothing important."
"Where's Mama?" 5-year-old Aria asks me.
"At work." I say patiently. "Go get dressed for the reaping, and let's go."
Aria and Danica run into the room they share, and Carissa follows me into the room we share.
"No, really. Where's Mom?" She asks. At ten years old, Carrie is very observant, and can always tell when I'm hiding something.
I lower my voice. "Mom got arrested."
"WHAT?!" She screeches, and I shush her hurriedly.
"She got caught stealing something; I don't know what." I whispered quietly. "We can't tell the younger girls about this; they'll get scared."
"That's lying though." Carrie says.
"It's not lying," I justify, "It's... withholding information."
"Still lying, if you ask me."
Carrie puts on a cream-colored dress, paired with shoes that are probably two sizes too big on her. I put on a black skirt, a plain white shirt, and a red sweater over that. I put on my penny loafers, which are too small and pinch my toes.
YOU ARE READING
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