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CHAPTER 7



When we get to the training center I’m not surprised about how prestige it is. Like I said before. There fatting us up for slaughter. “Here’s some beautiful living conditions, brilliant foods, a lot of new toys you could have everything you’ve ever wanted. But you’ll die a horrible and brutal deaths at the hands of a fellow child…have fun”. I mumble while I take off my outfit. I go to my closet and pick out black “jeans” and a white tee-shirt. I catch a glimpse of the window, I look down and there are thousand of screaming fans.

Wow, I guess we really did make an impact. I flashback to the look on Cato’s face, when we were extinguished. It makes my laugh out loud. I’m surprised when I hear a knock at the door. I’m even more surprised when its cinnia.

“Hey, are you busy?” he asks.

“No I was just. Doing well. Nothing.” I stammer. I see the amusement on his face. And quickly change the subject. “What’s up?” I ask

“I was just wondering if you would like a tour of the place?” he asks.

I’m wondering why he’s here. He’s not my stylist, and I could show myself around. My curiosity wins over. “Sure.”

He leads me around a lot of corridors, up the elevator, and he takes me to the roof. Once I open the door my immediate reaction is to breath in fresh air. I sigh in relief, its good to get out of that building. The view is incredible; there are so many twinkling lights, like stars on the floor. When I’m in the arena it will still be here and nothing will have changed.

“Beautiful isn’t it?”

“Yes, it is.” I say “Are we allowed to be up here?”

“Yes, were good, as long as they don’t find out”. He says with a smirk. My face asks for more. “They don’t like you out of there sight, but it’s not that big of deal to be up here anyways”. He picks up a leaf and flicks it over the edge and it bounces back. “They put up a forcefeild. “Things can come in, but no one can come out”. He explains.

“Thanks for the fire costume, it was really genius .Were usually just covered in coal. It’s not very stunning.”

He lets out a small giggle. “Thank you, it wouldn’t have worked without you guys”.

I smile. “We did look good.” I say.

“Yes especially katniss.” he says looking at me. “Don’t you think so?” I look at him suspiciously. Does he know something? Before I can ask him about what he’s implying

he says, “Come on, I’ll show you the garden.” We walk though a few more corridors. With every step I hear the click of cinnia shoes on the marble floor. These people really like marble floors. Maybe that what they will have in the arena. White marble everywhere. Certainly wouldn’t surprise me, they have no new ideas for arenas….the same old designs with the same old killings. After we pass a few levels, we reach the ground floor, and on it we reach the garden. As soon as we step out. I immediately notice the air. Its different, it’s organic. I smell the dew on the leaves, the bitter scent of damp bark. The Deep smell of red roses and lavender bushes, (the smell of my shower back in the center). There Is so many shades of green, laced with shades of, blue, red, pink, yellow and purple flowers. I take a purple flower, a pick of the petals one by one. “So tell me, how much do you feel for katniss.” he asks.

This question surprises me. “Is it that obvious?” I ask in reply.

“Yes.” Oh crap.

“How is that even possible, what is it something I’m putting out there?” I say in frustration. And throwing down the flower.

“Don’t worry, she hasn’t the faintest clue”. He says with a reassuring smile.

“So how do you know?” I say curiously.

“I see the way you look at her, and the way she looks back”. He replies.

“How exactly does she look at me?”. I ask again.

“Like someone she has to kill in a few weeks”. He reply’s while putting his hand on my shoulder. I like him. He’s honest, but yet he’s still kind. Maybe some of the people of payham aren’t all bad.

“Well to answer your earlier question, it doesn’t mater what I feel for her, there’s noting going on between us. And like you said, she going to have to kill me soon, so nothing can.” I say.

“So you admit feelings for her.” He says with slight amusement in his voice. I guess because he knows I was evading the question.

“Yes”. I say with a slither of anger in my voice.

“Are you planning on telling her before you enter the arena.” He asks. I stay silent, and look at the floor when I feel a slide of gilt pass my face.

“Ahh I see you plan on telling her in front everyone, in the interview.” He says.

I look at him and the corners of my mouth begin to slide up. He smiles back.

“Well a little piece of advice. Make sure she’s not in a position to hurt you when you do”. He laughs.

And I also let out a small giggle.

“Thanks I’ll take that under advisement.” I play along.

He walks towards the door and stops just before passing me.

“With you protecting her in the arena, I know she will come back.” He says I smile while looking down at the floor. He pats my shoulder and utters “Good luck Peeta”. And I hear the clear sounds of his shoes on the marble before the door closes.



When I get back to my room I notice I have pollen sprinkled all over my cloths. I quickly switch my cloths to pretty much the same outfit.

I walk to the dinning hall. I notice cinnia on the balcony, so I grab a glass of wine and walk out to him.

“Hey cinnia”. I say awkwardly

“There’s no need to be uncomfortable around me. I wont say anything”. He says

I sarcastically sigh in relief. We both laugh.

“Hey loverboy”. Portia says from behind me. I’m wondering if loverboy has replaced my real name, from now on.

“Hello P.” I say in a monotone voice.

“However Portia I’m not sure about.” Cinnia comments under a hushed voice, clearly referring to his earlier reassurance. We both let out a giggle.

“Wait-what?” Portia says.

“I was just saying how beautiful it is out here” cinnia says a bit louder.

“Oh yeah it is” P nods. Cinnia and I smile at each other hiding a giggle.

“It’s not like anything we have at home.” I comment. I can immediately tell by the sympathetic look on both there face’s that I shouldn’t have said it. I’m starting to sound like an attention hog.

“I didn’t mea-“.

“Don’t worry Peeta we know what you meant”. Portia smiles.

I sigh in relief again, only this time it was honest.

“Hey guys ready to eat?” I hear katniss yells from the room. I nod and all tree of us glance at each other in agreement.

We sit at the table, and Haymich walks in looking very well actually. His groomed, and dressed very nicely. And also appears to be sober. Were all served a glass of wine And I accept a refill, of my already existing glass. Haymich takes a small sip, but is more fixed on the food, and the chatting. He’s keeping good on is promise. The light small talk begins, and Effie and Haymich appear to be civil. I guess it’s our stylists. “I have to say, you have given then a good edge in the game.” Haymich says directing his comment at cinnia, and P. they share a quick look of accomplishment, and then nod at Haymich with gratitude. Katniss is sitting next to me. And is quite silent.

I turn my attention on the cake placed in front of us. He waiter takes a similar device that cinnia had (when he lit us on fire) out of his pocket.

I see the filmier flame, and the cake bursts into fire!

“What makes it burn? Is It alcohol?” Katniss asks he waiter. “That’s the last thing I nee- HEY I know you!” katniss trails. It’s quite clear she’s had a little too much. I inch the wine away, and P laughs. I don’t think she notices because her eyes are firmly fixed on the waiter. She (the waiter) looks absolutely terrified at the accusation, shakes her head and walks away. Everyone Is staring at katniss, including me. And katniss looks very confused, maybe a little offended. Katniss turns around and looks at us all innocently.

“Don’t be ridiculous, katniss how could you possibly know an Avox? The very thought! Effie says while whipping her head in disbelief.

“What’s an Avox?” katniss asks innocently.

“Someone who committed a crime. They cut her tong out so she cant speak. She’s probably a traitor of some sort. Its not likely you would know her”. Haymich says effortlessly

“Even if you did know her, you’re not to speak to any one of them unless it’s to give an order.” Effie says. “Of course you don’t really know her.” Effie demands.

Katniss has her thinking face on. I remember when we were in year 6. One of the students came late into class. And he made up some fake story about why he was late. The teacher and everyone else in the class could tell he was lying. Our teacher old us that none of us could lie properly. So she asked us all to do your best lying face. And they she asked us to do our best thinking face. She said it was better that we at least pretend were listing to what she says. I’m pretty sure she was drunk. But I still remember katniss’s best “thinking face” it hasn’t changed. “No I guess not I just-“.

She obviously needed help. “Delly Cartwright! That’s who it is. I kept thinking she looked filmier as well. Then I realized she’s a dead ringer for Delly.” I exclaim.

She looks at me suspiciously. I widen my eyes. And then she realizes and plays along. “Of course, that’s who I was thinking of, it must be the hair.” She nods.

Dellys hair looks nothing like hers. The Avox has red hair. And he has blond hair, almost yellow. I look at Haymich. He’s crinkling his nose at the memory.

“Something about the eyes too.” I say silencing any suspicion Haymich has. It’s too dead drunk back in district 12 to remember a girl he’s never spoken to.

“Oh well if that’s all it is”. Cinnia says clearly sussing out the conversation and quickly changing the subject. “And yes, the cake does have sprits but any alcohol has burned off. I ordered it specially in honor of your fiery debut.” He finishes. He’s aim was to change the subject, and it worked. The conversation quickly changes back to the outfits we are wearing for the interview. After the cake is devoured, we go to the sitting room. There are so many rooms in this place. At home we have 3 main rooms. Our bedroom, our bathroom, and the kitchen which is also used as a dining room, a sitting room and pretty much everything else. They show the recap of today’s events.

I don’t pay much attention to the others because really there not much use to me. But I do note the look on catos and cloves face. Thinking they have all the votes. Not until we come up. Is only until now I can truly capture what we have done. People will remember us. Maybe in my own way. I have made a difference. We will get sponsors. Lots of them to. Its now I decide what my game plan truly is.

Katniss the girl on fire! I cant get it out of my head. It’s quite catchy.

“Who’s idea was the hand holding?” Haymich asks.

“Cinnia’s.” Portia says. Haymich looks impressed.

“Just the perfect touch of rebellion…very nice.” Haymich adds.

And he’s right.

“Tomorrow morning is our first training session. Meet me for breakfast and I’ll tell you exactly how I want you to play it.” Haymich says to katniss and I.

“Now get some sleep while the grown-ups talk”. Haymich says in a dismissive manor. This angers me. He spends all his days, drinking his problems away so he doesn’t have to deal with them. And he calls us children. But I avoid the argument, because I’m too focused on what katniss has to say.

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