The Max Vaz in this story is not the Max Vaz tribute i created. i just enjoy the name so i used it here too :)
The story will follow a young 12 year old boy Max Vaz and his sister Molly, who will try to complete an impossible task. Getting them selves into and out of the arena with their friend Vince to save his mom.
“Everyone line up”. A voice boomed out of the megaphone. It was a Peacekeepers voice. Alan Mitchell, the leader of the Peacekeepers of this part of District 11. “I don’t have all day weaklings; hurry up so I can go eat. He put emphasis on the word ‘Eat’. He knows 95 percent of the citizens of district 11 are poor, but he isn’t since he’s a Peacekeeper. I line up, 57th in line out of 248 people. 172 of them are hungry and 39 of them are scared. 27 are a mix of both. I know this because I can pay attention, and I can read emotions well. I have this strange obsession with numbers, and im great with calculating numbers to figure out anything I need. If you think about it, the whole world is nothing but numbers. I could win the games with numbers. “Here child,” Alan hands me two gold dollars. “Now leave my sight and starve quietly” I give a low growl and look around. 124 of these people are angry. Anger leads to harsh endings, which leads to pain. If their werent 4 other Peacekeepers around I would strike and so would the other 124 people, but they have guns. and those who aren’t killed will be punished. “….thank you sir”. I look towards the direction of the watermelon patch. Maybe Molly will be off work, we need to go shopping before the reaping. I start to leave the apple orchard but Alan’s son Rich comes over. “Hey dirt-weed how’s it going?” I roll my eyes and keep walking “Leave me alone Rich”. He picks up the pace trying to catch up to me “what are you gonna do, tell your sissy”. I start to walk faster “IM TALKING TO YOU, SO YOU LISTEN” I start to sprint towards the watermelon patch. “MOLLY….WHERE ARE YOU MOLLY” I don’t see her. I start to scream again but my glasses fall off my face and fall to the ground. I go to pick them up but I can’t see two inches in front of me without them. Crunch. Not again. We can’t afford to buy another pair of glasses for me. I hear Rich laughing then he pushes me to the ground. “Looks like the baby broke his glasses.” he grabs an apple off the nearest tree, takes a bite out of it, then leans over me and uses one arm to hold me to the ground. I hear the familiar sound of an apple being picked “The punishment of eating the Capitols food is 20 public whippings” he laughs and chunks of red apple fall on my face. “for you maybe, but my dad is the head Peacekeeper for this orchard” I try to wiggle out of his grasp but fail “MOLLY, I NEE--” Rich puts his hand over my mouth before I can finish. “She isn’t coming to save you this time” I wiggle around more trying to break free but he has an iron grip. “stop squirming you little twerp” I hear footsteps. They are getting louder. Fifteen paces to the left, eleven paces, ten, nine. “who’s there?” Rich yells in a panicked voice. “who is it”? A male figure steps out of the bushes. He doesn’t look familiar to me, but that could be just because I can’t see, but I could tell by the fact that Rich let go of me that Rich knew him, and that he was scared of him. “Son, what are you doing to this lad” Rich takes his time to reply “Nothing father”. It must be Alan. “Come on son, let’s go. You have a big day tomorrow”. Rich replies in a gloomy tone “Yes father”. I hear more footsteps, coming from the direction of the watermelon patch. Could it be Molly? The footsteps get closer “max…max where are you”. It’s Molly; I hear her soft voice and her familiar walking pattern thump drag thump drag. Her left leg has a small limp from a childhood injury. “MAX, WHE--oh thank god I found you” she looks in my palm and sees my smashed glasses “I see you broke your glasses again. Max you know we can’t afford another pair”. “I know, how much did you get paid today”. “Diane gave us all a few extra dollars because of the reaping tomorrow” “how much more?” I say with new found joy. “Not enough for a new pair of glasses” she says with a smile. “Come on. Let’s go see if Edna has any on sale” she extends her arm out to pick me up off the ground, and I accept her hand gratefully. “Can we stop by the strawberry fields on the way home?” I ask. “I guess, I don’t know why you like it though. It just makes me hungry”
The market was busy as usual being the Thursday before the reaping. The first thing we did was meet in the Square to catch up with Vince, our childhood friend. Vince had his sleeves pulled up to his elbows and his cap low over his face. “you look paranoid Vince, what’s wrong” I ask. “my…my mom. She…she” Vince sheds a tear. “She was just diagnosed with cancer and has two months to live.” Vince sits on the bench and rests his elbows on his knees. “I’m just so terrified about the Quarter Quell, especially since we are at an all time low of eligible tributes” I sit down next to Vince and put my arm on his shoulder. “its ok Vince just look at the bright side, if you don’t get picked this year you wont have to enter next year since your 18”. Vince looks up at me “yes, but I need to win these games, its my only chance of having my mom cured. Remember the newscast last week? The capitol found a cure for it but its only given to people in the capitol. If I win I can demand for her to be cured!” he looks at a crack in the sidewalk and takes a long pause “plus I have been working extra hard this year in the orchards and I have gotten a lot stronger. I think I might have a chance.” molly looks at him disgusted “What are you gonna do? Volunteer? No one has volunteered for district 11 since the 80th hunger games and remember what happened to him? He was killed before the games even started by the mines. And before that in the 69th hunger games when a girl volunteered she was struck by lightning in the chariot ride. And we will never forget the 61st games. That was terrible. Plus the 52nd the 48th and the 32nd games. every time someone from District 11 volunteers something terrible happens before they even get in the arena“. Vince gets on his feet quickly ”do you not think i know that!? i know about the stupid curse but that is the only way my mom will survive” he screams. Molly gets in Vince’s face “for all we know we might not even be able to volunteer. it’s a Quarter Quell and no one knows what could happen” she screams Vince groans “Lets just get this shopping over with, they announce the Quell in an hour” After we stopped by Edna’s shop, the cloth shop, and the bakery we started our way home. Molly was holding the red cloth we bought for our mom, and Vince was holding a cup of salt and a cup of pepper, and I have a pair of slightly used glasses resting on my nose. They have a scratch on the left lens which makes it hard to see out of my left eye, but at least they aren’t crushed. Vince opens his mouth to speak but stops himself. He looks out in the distance then tries to talk again “I’m sorry I snapped at you Molly. I’m just so angry.” “well who are you angry at Vince?” I say “I…I guess I’m angry at myself.” he pauses “I don’t know why I’m angry, I just am. And it makes me more angry because I don’t know why I am angry” Molly speaks in a soothing tone “its ok Vince. If I was in your position I would be mad to” We walk for about 10 more minutes until we see a big crowd of people all looking in the same direction. Most of them look sad, and others look angry. “I wonder what’s going on” Vince asks. I look at my watch. 5:45 PM. “Its not the Quell announcement, That’s not for another fifteen minutes” we try to push our way through the crowd, which is like pushing down a brick wall. After 2 minutes of stepping on toes and pushing down citizens on accident we finally make it to the front of the crowd. Hanging on the whipping stand is a boy barely conscience with his eyes in the back of his head. The familiar buff arms I see everyday from constant pushing, and the big hands hanging helplessly from the loops in the ropes balled in a fist. His head hanging low and rolling weakly on his shoulders. I can hear the crack from the whip hit the boys back and hear a weak whimper. Almost instantly I figure out the boy on the whipping stand is Rich and the peacekeeper is not Alan, but a man in his mid thirties. On his shirt is a badge with an apple tree with angle wings sprouting from its trunk. The badge signifying the Head Peacekeeper.
“Thats Rich” I say with conflicted emotions. “I can see that Max” Molly says quickly “I’m more concerned about the badge on the peacekeepers uniform. isn’t Alan the head Peacekeeper? Rich’s dad?” Vince studies the whipping stand. “the stand looks new. Maybe they made some changes in control?” The whip hits Rich. I flinch at the sound of leather hitting flesh “Now that I think about it, Alan wasn’t wearing the pin earlier today. He seemed sad to” I say. “but still” Molly says “what could he have done in the past hour to make him get publicly whipped?” I think back to earlier today when Rich pushed me to the ground. “well, before you found me Rich ate one of the apples.” We watched him be whipped for another minute before they stopped and the new peacekeeper instructed us to all go home and turn on our televisions. The walk from the whipping stand home is a short one, maybe 5 minutes. There we part ways with Vince long enough for him to bring his spices home to his mother. When we walk inside our mom is sitting on the couch with the television already tuned into the only channel we have, the only channel all of Panem has. Capitol TV. Where the capitol gives us updates on what’s going on across Panem and also so we can watch mandatory events. Like the Hunger games. Today we all have to watch the announcement from President Gage regarding the Quarter Quell. “Hey guys, how was work?” my mom says. “fine” I answer “we picked you up that red cloth you asked for”. Molly pulled it out of her coat pocket and handed it to her. “is it enough to fix my dress for tomorrow?” Molly asks “it should dear, come sit down. The announcement is about to come on.” Sure enough, as soon as we sat down President Gage appeared on our screen. I take a deep breath. Of course I’m worried, who isn’t? this is the 100th Hunger Games so its gonna be big. “Hello citizens of Panem” President Gage says “as you all know the Reapings for the 100th Hunger Games is tomorrow, and children from all districts will be sent to the capitol to compete in the annul Hunger Games. Every twenty-five years a Quarter Quell comes upon us, which means a marvelous twist that was written after the first rebellion one hundred years ago. In this box beside me there is a piece of paper with the twist written on it” he points to a small black box with gold stripes, and one the number one hundred right above the locket. President Gage puts a small key into the locket and twists it. He reaches in and grabs a small piece of paper folded multiple times. He starts to unfold it. One, two, three folds. I take another deep breath. Within seconds my death could be announced to the world. Four folds, five. President Gage begins to read it out loud “On the 100th anniversary, to remind the rebels that we will, again, stop a rebellion. We will mix the past three Quarter Quells together. For the twenty-fifth anniversary the citizens voted for the tributes. For the fiftieth anniversary each District had to send twice as many tributes into the arena. And for the seventy-fifth anniversary the tributes were chosen from the existing pool of victors. So for the one hundred anniversary two tributes will be picked. One male and one female. Then three more people will be chosen at random, one of them being a past victor. And they will be voted on, the two out of the three with the most votes will be sent to the capitol to prepare them selves for the hunger games, along with the one male and one female chosen. And to add something special, because this is the one hundredth Hunger Games, for the first time ever, four people from the same district can win.” he puts the paper down and looks directly in the camera “good luck in the Reapings tomorrow. Now may the odds be ever in your favor”