The Demigod Games Chapter 2 (Doppy)
I head back to the house, but not before catching a plump bird and a few berries for dinner. I throw some leafy greens in as well, in hopes of a make-shift salad. I'm already running late but see the bee tree, where there are two huge hives usually full of honey. I decide to dump my water flask and fill it with honey, a present for my mom. She enjoys honey in her bread, and so does Annabeth. Then I reach the electrical fence and squeeze through easily. As I head along I glance at the square- where everyone will come together for the reaping. Then I hurry faster towards my house. My mom has laid out my fanciest clothes, as well as a beautiful rose for me to out in the front pocket. I undress and splash water on my face, then don the clothing. I don't have time to bathe.
My mom is probably already at the Reaping and I don't want to be late. The only times you are excused from the Reaping is if you are on death's door. Unfortunately, I am not. I quickly grab my pen (that morphs into a sword) and run out the door.
When I reach the square it is already packed. I hurry up to the tables, and they take a quick blood sample. Then I join the older guys in line, shifting around concious of the fact that I'm barely cleaned up.
I am worried for Annabeth, because she is in the Reaping so many times this year. Mine is only once more than hers.. But I can't bear the thought of her being sent of to her death. In fact, I am in exactly 45 times and Annabeth in 35. The only reason Annabeth and I are in so many times are because if the notes. If you sign up for notes you receive flour sometimes sugar if you sign up for ten notes. My family needs more food than my hunting so I had to sign up for notes, and so did Annabeth. and I glance her way and she smiled grimly at me.
Out of the corner of my eye I see Tom Henker, the one who pulls the names out of the bowls, approach. He smiles broadly at the crowd and booms out, "Welcome, welcome faction 7! It is now time for our 39th annual Demigod Games! As usual- ladies first." He winks then moves swiftly to the opposite side if the stage and dramatically puts his hand in. He plucks 3 and out and sprinkles 2 back in. He then walks back to the microphone and pauses. The girls suck in their breath. "Annabeth- Annabeth Chase." He announces solemnly. My jaw drops, how can this be? Everyone turns to clear a path and get a good look at her. I do too. Her eyes are frightened but her back is straight and she half consciously tucks some hair behind her ear. And then suddenly rage comes over me. They will NOT take everything I care about and everything I have worked at keeping safe. I even took 5 notes out for her, so she could have enough food for her family to live off of. But now there she is, walking slowly down the aisle. I step forward, and then I am running towards her.
"Annabeth! Annabeth no! Don't go!" I trip and fall over a rock, but am immediately back on my feet. She turns to me and gratitude fills her eyes. We race towards each other but I never make it. Two PeaceKeepers grab me and start to drag me away. "No! Let go! No!!" I scream hysterically, like a child throwing a temper tantrum. Then I am hit with sudden inspiration, and before I lose my nerve I blurt out "I volunteer! I volunteer as tribute for my faction!" It won't help to keep Annabeth from going to the Games, but I will be with her, I can make sure she wins. And that's all that matters. I walk up to the stage, where Tom Henker has been strangely silent. I see his observing the scene, with his hawk like eyes. He makes no move to help me up the steep stage, and neither do the PeaceKeepers. I glare at them and hoist myself up. I reach my hand down to Annabeth and she accepts it. Soon we are both standing next to Tom and he turns towards the crowd. "We now have our tributes! Lets give them a farewell clap and send them off!" No one claps, but they silently make a three fingered claw over their heart, then push out. A sign for warding off evil- for the evil yet to come for Annabeth. For us.
We are herded into the building behind us, and told to keep quiet and wait for people to visit. I am given a glass of water but I can't bring myself to drink it, even if it is really clean and pure. A child below the window is scrounging around the flowers- probably looking for edibles plants or medicine flowers. "Hey!" I whisper to it. The person glances up and I see that "it" is a him. "I have fresh water up here! Take it to your family." Then I take the cup and wait for him to outstretch his hands, in a cupped position. I aim to the best if my ability and don't spill a drop. He takes a small lap up with his tongue and sighs in content. Then I drop my own water flask down by his foot, and he kneels down and drops the water in. The door bangs opens and I leap back from the window. "What are you doing?" The PeaceKeeper says suspiciously. I snort and say, "Nothing, just looking at the scenery. Is that okay, that I can look at the last of my faction before I die?" He scowels at me and drops a food tray on the counter. "Your family won't be able to visit you because they need to get back to their work, and they tried to forcibly get in your room when it wasn't visiting time. Then he leaves. I wordlessly look down to see the boy in the flowers is still there. I grab the food tray and drop down a cluster of grapes, a wheel of cheese (after I take a nibble) and two loaves of bread, saving one for me. He mouths a thank you and then runs off.
Shortly after we are boarded on the train towards the capital. I am told it is a city of light, so many lights to cover up their dark deeds. I don't see Annabeth the entire time because she slept the whole way through. It turns out we do have a mentor, some districts don't due to they never win. Ours is Gleeson Hedge, which I think is pretty close to having no one. He's an old drunkard that has no compassion for us, and had a crude sense of humor. He came out of the his room to see me sitting in front of his beer. I figured this was the only way for him to notice me. "Move out if the way kid." He grumped at me. I shook my head and said, "First I need advice- you need to help me keep Annabeth alive. So until we figure something out you aren't going to touch your precious drinks." He snarled at me and whipped a pocket knife out. He slashed at me grazing my ear then he stabbed at my thigh. There was his mistake- I grabbed his wrist and his knife fell to the floor. In a viper quick move I had him pinned to the wall. He smiled and said, "Looks like I actually got a pair of fighters this year. Very well- let's plan how to save your girlfriend." She isn't my girlfriend but I didn't argue.
After hours of planning strategies we arrived at the capital. It really was huge and it up. I have to carry Annabeth up the stairs through the building because she is so exhausted. We go up 7 stories, one story per faction I guess. I drop her off in her room and she immediately wakes up. Ok, ok- that might be because I meant to drop her on the bed but she rolled off onto the floor. She leaped up knife in hand and I ran screaming out the door. I know that's not very manly but- have YOU seen Annabeth with a knife??
When I reached my room my mouth dropped. But only for a second, because then I was rushing in among the shower, clicking with the awesome controls. There are chocolates from these cool chocolate and candy dispensers. I turned on the TV, but nothing interesting was on. After some trouble I called maid service cause I couldn't figure out how to turn the shower off. Then finally it was night time and I climbed into my bed. It was soo comfortable and I felt like I was in pillow heaven. But then uncomfortable thought hit me. What if this is the same bed as the tribute who died last year? Suddenly it wasn't so comfy anymore. I slid off and took a blanket and lay down on the floor. Much better- just like home. Except the blanket was the fancy capital kind instead of my hunting jacket and the floor is plush instead of hard wood. Oh well. Tomorrow we start training, and it will mark my official time until I die. Sleep dreams Percy, I tell myself miserably.