The Stone Cries Out

Agate


Agate


I watch the scenery go past in a swift blur, this large ocean of green that doesn't glisten but rustle. I can almost hear the very leaves whoosh, while I stand perfectly still in my room.

Clove and I had already eaten, and we took care not to gorge ourselves. While there was plenty of food that I had never tasted before, arriving at the Capitol on a sick and overly fed stomach was not going to be useful.

It wouldn't be attractive either.

Sitting down on the bed, a little too soft to me, I recline back. Clove had gone off to do… whatever it is she does in her spare alone time. She and I are part of the same academy that trains the potential tributes of my district. She's incredibly skilled and lethal with her knives. She's always been fascinating to watch, with her stature and capability to make up for those shortcomings one would think of regarding her height.

She'll be a deadly opponent in the arena.

I don't worry.

My room darkens for the briefest of seconds and I rise from my bed, heading to the window. As we head out the tunnel, I see the faint light of the Capitol stretching out in front of my eyes. As it draws closer, my heart beats loudly. People below me wave frantically, trying to look at us.

My grin inside me is only a smirk outside, and I wave. The power of my hand is astounding—they react with such a profound thunder that their cheers vibrate in my ears.

They're practically eating out of my hand and I find it enjoyable. There's this godlike ability in my palm, my fingers stretching into something with lightning. They move and the people crackle. My grin finally comes out and I hear women cry.

I'm very much enjoying this.

Our escort comes to fetch Clove and I. She's already changed into clean clothes. I didn't bother since we would be heading to the building where they keep the Tributes.

Clove glances at me, her smirk in place, "So, you ready?"

"I was born ready, you know that. These people won't be able to handle it."

She laughs quietly, her slender shoulders trembling.

We wave at the citizens that pour out to greet us. A man calls out to Clove, telling her she's beautiful. She takes it all in stride but I know that she would've thrown a knife at him if she could have. She's not very… appreciative of such things. She's definitely pretty so it's not surprising but she only shows affection to her family, from what I've seen. And we tolerate each other, not just because we're in the same academy, but we're the only people we would know here from home.

Rather sentimental; she doesn't seem to mind it, it sounds as though she wants it, considering how she would always want to talk to me, so I'd let her. It doesn't hurt anything. Not yet, anyway.

We head to the second floor and we're told where our rooms are. Clove instantly heads to her room. I don't mind and go to mine. The room is refurbished incredibly well, with a tall ceiling and too many windows. There's a stench coming from me I don't like and head to the bathroom. There are too many fancy buttons, shining in the glisten of the water drops. I just let it flow over me and relax, pushing any thoughts from my mind.

Once I'm clean, I don a pair of pants, not bothering with a shirt. The satin sheets feel good on my skin. I let out a sigh. My fingers brush something and I glance to my right. A remote sits right near the foot of the bed. I grip and just stare, thinking. I press a button and watch the screen flicker on. I grimace at the sight of two women in an advertisement, finding it inane.

Then I find it. The recap of the Tributes, for the people who missed it; I watch them quietly. The boy and girl from District 1 can be useful. They're both strong, a little self-centered but who isn't slightly?

The tributes come and go, faces not worth remembering. They're people that need to be eliminated and that's all they are. The ones that are keeping me from being the Victor of my District…

That's why she's the first to catch my attention. She bursts into the flock of scared people, and she shouts into the air that she volunteers.

That in itself is impressive. I've never heard of the lower district, especially 12, to come forth and present themselves as candidates for being a Victor. Never.

She rushes forward and pulls the girl close, her sister from the way they hold on to each other, and another boy comes and takes her away, off the screen. The camera focuses in on her face as she walks to the stage, reminding me of a lamb for slaughter. But she keeps walking, her face collected and calm, though I can tell the blood is draining from her face. Her eyes are intense and they darken a hue into something I don't understand.

The woman in bright pink speaks and she asks for her name.

Her name is Katniss Everdeen.

Katniss Everdeen.

Huh.

The video continues to play and the boy comes up. He's definitely the frailer of the two, in the way he shakes, the fear evident in his face, compared to hers. She knows how to hide her emotions nicely. When they shake hands, his seems to stay a second longer than hers in the air. I brush it off as him needing someone to help him in this time. Most people don't see the true opportunity behind the whole Reaping. It'll bring good to one's district and hold a person's name up for years; lifetimes. There will always be people to remember.

The video begins to flare into the emblem of the Capitol, of our nation. My finger moves on its own and the film rewinds until it comes back onto her, standing on the stage, stance squared and her chin held high.

She's different.

I don't know how different. But she is.

This could either be a problem or an advantage.

Either way, she'll be dead and I'm sure I'll be the one to kill her.

I plan to win.

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