Rue’s Diary – Day Seven

I’ve spent a week in the arena almost to the hour, and I’m surprised I made it this long. I’m on my way to our campsite as we speak; I only pause to take a break from walking to write a bit in here.

Between writing this and scouting for Careers, who are sure to be enraged by now, I’ve got my hands full. It’s taking me a really long time to get back to Katniss, which is bothersome because I feel so worried about her.

Last night, I lay awake, thinking about the people in my life, the people I love, and why I need to win this. There are eight of us left, and that increases my chances of winning by quite a bit since the last time I checked.

If Katniss or I win, it’s just that. Both of us can’t win. And if I don’t win, I hope it’s her, and I assume she thinks the same of me. We’ve become good allies, but we both know that even this friendship can’t last forever.

And then, my family. My five little siblings, my parents, and the workers at the orchard, who are practically my family, anyway. I have to survive for them; otherwise…I don’t know what they’d do. They don’t know how to take care of themselves, not without me. Especially the younger ones – they don’t know how to survive.

I think I hear something, a rattle in the leaves or a light breeze brushing against the branches, but I ignore it. If anything, it’s too small to be human, and it must be an animal. It couldn’t be another tribute, could it?

I banish the thought from my mind immediately. I’m hiding right now, and I’ve become far too good at camouflage for anyone to see me, right? Instead, I think of music. The song we sing at the end of the work day. The lyrics we say in the form of a lullaby. The songs that lull my siblings and I to sleep when our stomachs are too famished to let us.

I hear something again, and this time, my body fills with adrenaline. I’m frightened – very frightened. The noise was too loud to be an animal. It’s another tribute, I’m almost positive. I’m sitting still, motionless and frozen.

I don’t have anything to defend myself from a distance…I only have a blade I can use to cut someone up should they get close. I could throw it, but my aim isn’t very good. At best, I could hardly puncture an arm or a leg.

My pencil is shaking in my hand, and I can barely formulate thoughts in my head right now. My breathing is fast and uneven. Blood is pounding loudly in my chest.

I quickly peer out from behind the bush to see if I can spot anything, or anyone, but all I see is emptiness…at least, until I see the rustle of tree branches moments later.

It’s the boy, the one from District 1. He’s looking around, looking for fresh meat. I can tell by the furrow in his brow and the flames in his eyes that he wants revenge, and mostly, he wants to kill the one who started it. Me.

He whips his head back and forth furiously, like he’s trying to survey the entirety of his surroundings at once. His mouth is pointed into an odd snarl, almost bloodthirsty.

Finally, his eyes focus on a point in space. A point that most without excellent senses would think to be nothing, but for a Career who’s been in an arena for days, it’s as obvious as the plain as day.

He’s staring at me.

And then, after a few moments, not even enough time for me to say a prayer, or even think, he does something that I wished he wouldn’t. He pulls out his spear. The spear with an arrowhead as sharp as ten blades.

And he lunges for me.

The End

Thank you all for reading Rue’s Diary. I put a lot of time and effort into this and I really hope you enjoyed it. Give me some feedback! I really need it. Thanks again, my lovely readers! -Rachael


Rue’s Diary – Day Six (Night)

I finally found shelter from the Careers and the path that will lead them to destruction. I created three campfires in different places in the arena, making sure that I used enough green wood to create smoke, and by doing so, successfully distracted the Careers from their area on the lake. However, I never set the third one, because the Careers had figured out that it was all a diversion, and I was a bit worried to do so.

Katniss should be trying to destroy their supplies right now, but I noticed that the Careers decided to drag the boy from District 3 along with them, and their supplies are now unguarded. Weird, I think.

I just heard an explosion. Maybe the supply areas are booby-trapped. I hope the plan, or whatever demonic scheme she thought of, worked out smoothly.

I don’t know if Katniss is alright, because the bombs could be seen and heard and booming frequencies from miles away. I really hope so. No cannons have gone off yet, so I guess that’s a good sign.

Yet another explosion just went off, and, wait, there’s another…but still no cannon. What the heck is going on right now?!

Cato and another tribute just took off running at full speed, as angry as ever. Katniss, I think to myself. Get out of there! My voice practically shrieks in my head.

Now that I’m thinking about it, I should really clear out soon. Other tributes are still looking around for me, and I’m really not sure if staying is the best option.

Just then, the cannon goes off. Oh, Katniss. I really hope that wasn’t you!

The sun dips below the horizon, and night falls. I send my message to the Mockingjays, telling Katniss that I can’t make it back to the campsite, but I’m okay…even though I’m not sure if she’s alive to hear it.

I wait patiently for the deaths to appear in the sky at night, telling us who is still in these twisted, demonic Games. The only people who died are the boys from District 3 and 10.

So, who’s left?

The boy from District 1 and both tributes from 2 are alive. All of the tributes from 3 and 4 are now dead. I wonder what happened to the boy from 3. He couldn’t have blown up, but…how did he die?

Then, there’s Foxface, the girl from 5. All tributes from Districts 6-10 are now dead.

Well, the crippled boy from 10 finally died. It took him almost a week? Wow. I kind of envy him, I thought.

Then, besides Katniss and I, there’s Peeta, and…

Thresh! I almost forgot, I tell myself. Thresh, the boy from my district, he’s still alive. That gives me a glint of happiness to know that someone’s out there who isn’t as bad as the Careers are…besides Katniss.

Katniss, right! She’s alive, thank goodness.

Besides Katniss and I, there are six tributes left.

Night is falling, so I should climb up into a tree and wait for what’s left of the angry Careers to chase down the people responsible for it. I mean, they just lost all of their supplies, I believe. If that’s the case, they’ll be angry. The question is: who will they kill next? Will they be after one of us, the tributes from the other districts, or will they just turn on each other?

Only one more entry until the final blow, guys! You better be as excited as I am, because these are turning out really nicely and I really appreciate you all reading this. -Rachael

Rue’s Diary – Day Six (Afternoon)

We didn’t get much hunting done. Instead, Katniss spent a great deal of time asking me about the Career’s base. I’ve only been there to spy on them briefly, but Katniss tells me I’m observant enough to help.

They have set up their camp by the lake, and the stash of food and supplies is about thirty yards away from that. During the day, the Careers go out hunting for fresh tribute meat, while they leave the boy from District 3 to guard it all. So that’s why he isn’t dead yet, I think.

Katniss told me about how the boy was allowed to live if he stood as their guard, and I told her that he’s not very big in muscles, size, whatnot. He also doesn’t have many weapons, from what I saw while spying on them the other day. The Careers always leave him there…alone.

Neither of us could tell what was off about this whole setup. The Careers are letting a scrawny boy guard all of their supplies, and he’s not even heavily armed? Something just isn’t right, but we couldn’t concentrate well to see it clearly.

Today, I told Katniss that I am passionate about music. We actually had a funny conversation about it.

“Music?” she asked. “I rank music somewhere between hair ribbons and rainbows on the importance scale.” It took me about five seconds to realize that Katniss can’t stand either of those things. “You have a lot of time for that?” she asked me, a curious look on her face.

“We sing at home, while we work, too!” I tell her. “That’s why I love your pin.” I was referring to her district token, a pin resembling a Mockingjay. Mockingjays are birds with excellent memories, and can repeat exact messages – including tone of voice – back to listeners.

“You like my pin?”

“Oh, yes. I know a few Mockingjays myself. They carry the melody we sing – a four-note tune that signals when the day of work is over and we can go home to rest.”

She looked puzzled, so I cleared my throat and sing the sweet, clear tune. We decided to use it as our signal to each other, to communicate during our devious plot against the Careers.

I’m going to make three campfires, causing the Careers to stray away from the supply stash and each other, then Katniss will find a way to destroy the entire thing. Then, we’ll meet back at the place we’re at now for dinner.

Before Katniss leaves, she makes sure that I am well stocked with food, clean water, and matches. I hug her at the last minute, because she has already done so much for me, and I don’t know what I would do without her.

By lunch we have a plan, and by early afternoon, we intend to carry it out. Hopefully, it works, and Katniss or I might be able to live in the end.

Rue’s Diary – Day Six (Morning)

The first thing that went through my head this morning was the fact that I’ve been in the arena almost a week. It’s needling in the back of my head – a small little truth that both Katniss and I have realized. Both of us can’t win these Games. But, seeing as though neither of us have an excellent shot at winning, I shove it to the back of my mind for another time.

Last night the cannon fired while I was asleep. Only one death, no more and no less, but we don’t know who was killed, nor why or how.

Katniss and I realized how to take the Careers down from the core. Somehow, we have to destroy their food supply. The fight for resources amongst themselves will be a tremendous struggle. Traditionally, the Career tributes’ strategy is to horde all of the food early on and work from there. Otherwise, tributes from other Districts are more likely to win. The fact that the Careers were better fed growing up in their District is actually to their disadvantage, because they don’t know what it’s like to be starving, or even hungry.

Katniss keeps saying that tomorrow, it will be the Careers that will have to watch their backs instead of us. She carefully planned out what we were going to do next.

“Are you ready to do it?” Katniss asks.

“Do what?” I respond.

I jumped with excitement, which probably made me look like a little kid, but it got her to smile.

“Today we take out the Career’s food.”

“Really? How?!” I asked with such enthusiasm, I swear my eyes popped out of my head.

Does she have a strategy?

“No idea, but we’ll figure out a plan while we hunt.”

I thought she did. Oh, drat.

Rue’s Diary – Day Five

It is now the fifth day and Katniss finally found me this morning. She was stung by the Tracker Jackers pretty severely, because she was knocked out in a tree – out cold for about two days solid. The venom also causes distortion in both your thoughts and your vision, and I’m assuming she had both.

Instead of our normal chitchat, she kept asking me questions about who was with the Careers now and how many of us were left. Only ten tributes remain right now. We’re both filthy, but I can only imagine what the remaining eight tributes look like.

Katniss was actually the one to come up with the idea of a more “permanent” alliance. I can remember exactly what she first said to me:

“You know, they’re not the only ones that can form alliances,” she laughed.

“You want me for an ally?!” I questioned, caught off-guard by the suggestion. Regardless

“Why not? You saved me with those Tracker Jackers. You’re smart enough to still be alive. And I can’t seem to shake you, anyway,” she says jokingly.

I blinked a few times, but didn’t respond.

“You hungry?” she asked me. The sound of the words made my stomach scream. “Come on then,” she continues. “I’ve had two kills today.”

She gave me a whole leg from one of the birds she managed to catch with a homemade snare. I told her that with so many people in my family, I’ve never had a whole leg to myself before! She gave me a second when she realized that my stomach was practically begging for it.

A few days ago I found a type of leaves in a bush to relieve the stings from Tracker Jackers and gave them to her, and she applied some medication to the burns on my arm that I’d been suffering through, but ignoring, for days. She told me that it all was a fair trade, even though I didn’t really think so. On top of that, she wanted a firm alliance from me, which I was eager to give. We even shook on it.

Later on, she told me I reminded her of her little sister, Primrose. I remember her from when I watched the replay of the District 12 Reaping. Prim, as she calls her, was chosen for the games, but Katniss took her place. Prim is the same age as I am, and, to tell you the truth, she even looks a bit like me, minus the difference in skin tone and hair color. According to Katniss, we even have similar personalities.

“Small, quick, intelligent, and young,” Katniss said.

We chatted with each other for hours about our Districts in between eating and walking. It was interesting to learn about her heritage, because information doesn’t flow between the Districts as well as you might think it does. Everything she said surprised me.

We divided up our food supplies so, in case we’re separated, we can be set on our own for a couple of days. We headed upstream until it was almost nightfall. She let me climb into a sleeping bag that she snatched up, which was only one item inside of the backpack filled with all sorts of goodies, including matches, a knife lodged in from another tribute, and a pair of glasses that allow you to see perfectly in complete darkness. We use glasses exactly like these back home in District 11, when we’re in the trees, gathering food in the orchard, too high for the lamps to reach us.

The sleeping bag is big enough to fit us both, and we can share body heat. Katniss is already fast asleep, so I should probably do the same. I realize that I’ve been very lonely in this arena, and the presence of another human being is very comforting to me.

There is a big day ahead of us tomorrow. There are ten tributes left, and I heard her mention something earlier about taking out the Careers bright and early tomorrow morning.

Rue’s Diary – Day Four

Day four is looking less promising, because Katniss is nowhere to be found, though she isn’t dead. If she was, her face would be projected into the sky.

I find myself spying on the Careers on a day-to-day basis. After what looked like a bad attack from the Tracker Jackers yesterday, they all went to the pond as well, trying to cleanse themselves. The boy from District 12 is long gone, not dead, but probably now alone. I believe his name is Peeta, but I can’t be certain. It doesn’t matter.

I’ve been keeping myself warm by sticking my extra pair of socks on my hands. There is little to do, so I twiddle my thumbs, waiting for Katniss to show up, waiting to see what her next move is. The last deaths were Glimmer and the girl from District 4, but besides that, I don’t think that there’s even been any action today. No deaths now, but hopefully, I will change that soon.