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When I wake up, the other side of the bed is cold. My fin- gers stretch out, seeking Prim's warmth but finding only the rough canvas cover of the mattress. Hunger Games 1 The Hunger Games · Read more · Hunger Games. Read more Mind Games (The Disillusionists Trilogy: Book 1) · Read more. shortages, or the Hunger Games. had to kill the lynx because he scared off game. International Standard Book Number (Ebook-PDF).

He stuck with the town kids, so how would I? In it is all the anger, all the fear I felt at herabandonment. Five years later, I stillwake up screaming for him to run. This geographical advantage wasa major factor in the districts losing the war that ledto my being a tribute today. I watch as Gale pulls out his knife and slices thebread. Boyswho are two to three times my size.

When I wake up, the other side of the bed is cold. Shemust have had bad dreams and climbed in with ourmother. Of course, she did. This is the day of thereaping. I prop myself up on one elbow. In sleep, my mother looksyounger, still worn but not so beaten-down. My mother wasvery beautiful once, too. Or so they tell me. Mashed-in nose, half of one ear missing,eyes the color of rotting squash.

Prim named himButtercup, insisting that his muddy yellow coatmatched the bright flower. I le hates me. Or at leastdistrusts me. Even though it was years ago, I think hestill remembers how I tried to drown him in a bucketwhen Prim brought him home. Scrawny kitten, bellyswollen with worms, crawling with fleas. The lastthing I needed was another mouth to feed. But Primbegged so hard, cried even, I had to let him stay.

Itturned out okay. Even catches the occasional rat. Sometimes, when I clean a kill, I feed Buttercup theentrails. He has stopped hissing at me. No hissing. This is the closest we will evercome to love. I swing my legs off the bed and slide into my huntingboots. Supple leather that has molded to my feet. Ipull on trousers, a shirt, tuck my long dark braid upinto a cap, and grab my forage bag.

On the table,under a wooden bowl to protect it from hungry ratsand cats alike, sits a perfect little goat cheesewrapped in basil leaves. I put the cheese carefully in my pocket as I slipoutside. Our part of District 12, nicknamed the Seam, isusually crawling with coal miners heading out to themorning shift at this hour.

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Men and women withhunched shoulders, swollen knuckles, many whohave long since stopped trying to scrub the coal dustout of their broken nails, the lines of their sunkenfaces. But today the black cinder streets are empty. Shutters on the squat gray houses are closed. May as well sleep in. If youcan. Our house is almost at the edge of the Seam. I onlyhave to pass a few gates to reach the scruffy fieldcalled the Meadow.

Separating the Meadow from thewoods, in fact enclosing all of District 12, is a highchain-link fence topped with barbed-wire loops. Even so, Ialways take a moment to listen carefully for the humthat means the fence is live.

There are several other weakspots in the fence, but this one is so close to home Ialmost always enter the woods here. Electrified or not,the fence has been successful at keeping the flesh-eaters out of District Inside the woods they roamfreely, and there are added concerns like venomoussnakes, rabid animals, and no real paths to follow. Myfather knew and he taught me some before he wasblown to bits in a mine explosion. There was nothingeven to bury.

I was eleven then. Five years later, I stillwake up screaming for him to run. Even though trespassing in the woods is illegal andpoaching carries the severest of penalties, morepeople would risk it if they had weapons.

But mostare not bold enough to venture out with just a knife. My bow is a rarity, crafted by my father along with afew others that I keep well hidden in the woods,carefully wrapped in waterproof covers.

My fathercould have made good money selling them, but if theofficials found out he would have been publiclyexecuted for inciting a rebellion. But the idea that someone might bearming the Seam would never have been allowed.

In the fall, a few brave souls sneak into the woods toharvest apples. But always in sight of the Meadow. Always close enough to run back to the safety ofDistrict 12 if trouble arises. Then Iglance quickly over my shoulder. Even here, even inthe middle of nowhere, you worry someone mightoverhear you. Eventually I understoodthis would only lead us to more trouble.

So I learnedto hold my tongue and to turn my features into anindifferent mask so that no one could ever read mythoughts. Do my work quietly in school. Make onlypolite small talk in the public market. Discuss littlemore than trades in the Hob, which is the blackmarket where I make most of my money.

Even athome, where I am less pleasant, I avoid discussingtricky topics. Like the reaping, or food shortages, orthe Hunger Games. Prim might begin to repeat mywords and then where would we be? In the woods waits the only person with whom I canbe myself. I can feel the muscles in my facerelaxing, my pace quickening as I climb the hills toour place, a rock ledge overlooking a valley. A thicketof berry bushes protects it from unwanted eyes. Thesight of him waiting there brings on a smile.

Galesays I never smile except in the woods. My real name is Katniss,but when I first told him, I had barely whispered it.

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Then when this crazylynx started following me around the woods lookingfor handouts, it became his official nickname for me. Ifinally had to kill the lynx because he scared offgame. But I got a decent price for his pelt. I take it in my hands, pull out thearrow, and hold the puncture in the crust to my nose,inhaling the fragrance that makes my mouth floodwith saliva.

Fine bread like this is for specialoccasions. He must have been at thebakery at the crack of dawn to trade for it. His expression brightens at the treat. Happy Hunger Games! I catch it in my mouth and break the delicate skinwith my teeth. The sweet tartness explodes across mytongue. We have to joke about it because thealternative is to be scared out of your wits. Besides,the Capitol accent is so affected, almost anythingsounds funny in it. I watch as Gale pulls out his knife and slices thebread.

He could be my brother. Straight black hair,olive skin, we even have the same gray eyes. Most of the familieswho work the mines resemble one another this way. They are. They ran an apothecaryshop in the nicer part of District Since almost noone can afford doctors, apothecaries are our healers.

My father got to know my mother because on hishunts he would sometimes collect medicinal herbsand sell them to her shop to be brewed into remedies.

She must have really loved him to leave her home forthe Seam. I try to remember that when all I can see isthe woman who sat by, blank and unreachable, whileher children turned to skin and bones. Gale spreads the bread slices with the soft goatcheese, carefully placing a basil leaf on each while Istrip the bushes of their berries.

We settle back in anook in the rocks. From this place, we are invisiblebut have a clear view of the valley, which is teemingwith summer life, greens to gather, roots to dig, fishiridescent in the sunlight. The day is glorious, with ablue sky and soft breeze.

Run off. Live in the woods. The idea is sopreposterous. But they might as wellbe. Andyou may as well throw in our mothers, too, becausehow would they live without us? Who would fill thosemouths that are always asking for more? With both ofus hunting daily, there are still nights when game hasto be swapped for lard or shoelaces or wool, stillnights when we go to bed with our stomachsgrowling. The conversation feels all wrong. And Gale is devoted to his family. And evenif we did When wemet, I was a skinny twelve-year-old, and although hewas only two years older, he already looked like aman.

It took a long time for us to even becomefriends, to stop haggling over every trade and beginhelping each other out. You can tell by the way the girls whisper about himwhen he walks by in school that they want him. Good hunting partners are hard to find. We can hunt, fish,or gather. We can leave our poles andgather in the woods.

After the reaping, everyone is supposed tocelebrate. And a lot of people do, out of relief thattheir children have been spared for another year. Butat least two families will pull their shutters, lock theirdoors, and try to figure out how they will survive thepainful weeks to come.

We make out well. The predators ignore us on a daywhen easier, tastier prey abounds. By late morning,we have a dozen fish, a bag of greens and, best of all,a gallon of strawberries. I found the patch a few yearsago, but Gale had the idea to string mesh nets aroundit to keep out the animals. On the way home, we swing by the Hob, the blackmarket that operates in an abandoned warehousethat once held coal. When they came up with a moreefficient system that transported the coal directlyfrom the mines to the trains, the Hob gradually tookover the space.

We easily trade six of the fish for good bread,the other two for salt. Greasy Sae, the bony oldwoman who sells bowls of hot soup from a largekettle, takes half the greens off our hands inexchange for a couple of chunks of paraffin.

We mightdo a tad better elsewhere, but we make an effort tokeep on good terms with Greasy Sae. No one in the Seam would turnup their nose at a good leg of wild dog, but thePeacekeepers who come to the Hob can afford to be alittle choosier.

She just keeps toherself. Like me.

Since neither of us really has agroup of friends, we seem to end up together a lot atschool. Eating lunch, sitting next to each other atassemblies, partnering for sports activities.

We rarelytalk, which suits us both just fine. Today her drab school outfit has been replaced by anexpensive white dress, and her blonde hair is done upwith a pink ribbon. Reaping clothes.

Itisapretty dress, but she would never be wearing itordinarily. She presses her lips together and thensmiles. Does she meanit? Or is she messing with him? His eyes land on a small, circular pin that adorns herdress. Real gold. Beautifully crafted. It could keep afamily in bread for months. I had six when I was just twelve years old. She puts themoney for the berries in my hand. We walk toward the Seam in silence. The reaping system is unfair, with the poor gettingthe worst of it.

You become eligible for the reaping theday you turn twelve. That year, your name is enteredonce. At thirteen, twice. And so on and so on untilyou reach the age of eighteen, the final year ofeligibility, when your name goes into the pool seventimes. Say you are poor and starvingas we were.

You can opt to add your name more timesin exchange for tesserae. You may do this for each of your family members aswell. So, at the age of twelve, I had my name enteredfour times. Once, because I had to, and three timesfor tesserae for grain and oil for myself, Prim, and mymother.

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In fact, every year I have needed to do this. And the entries are cumulative. So now, at the age ofsixteen, my name will be in the reaping twenty times.

Gale, who is eighteen and has been either helping orsingle-handedly feeding a family of five for sevenyears, will have his name in forty-two times. You can see why someone like Madge, who has neverbeen at risk of needing a tessera, can set him off. Thechance of her name being drawn is very slimcompared to those of us who live in the Seam. Notimpossible, but slim. Gale knows his anger at Madge is misdirected. A way to plant hatredbetween the starving workers of the Seam and thosewho can generally count on supper and therebyensure we will never trust one another.

Hisrages seem pointless to me, although I never say so. But whatgood is yelling about the Capitol in the middle of thewoods?

In fact, itscares off the nearby game. I let him yell though. Better he does it in the woods than in the district. Gale and I divide our spoils, leaving two fish, a coupleof loaves of good bread, greens, a quart ofstrawberries, salt, paraffin, and a bit of money foreach. At home, I find my mother and sister are ready to go. My mother wears a fine dress from her apothecarydays.

Prim is in my first reaping outfit, a skirt andruffled blouse. A tub of warm water waits for me. I scrub off the dirtand sweat from the woods and even wash my hair. Tomy surprise, my mother has laid out one of her ownlovely dresses for me.

A soft blue thing with matchingshoes. And this issomething special. Her clothes from her past are veryprecious to her. I lether towel-dry it and braid it up on my head. I canhardly recognize myself in the cracked mirror thatleans against the wall. I hug her, because Iknow these next few hours will be terrible for her. Herfirst reaping. That theunthinkable might happen. The kindonly Prim can draw out of me.

The fish and greens are already cooking in a stew, butthat will be for supper. Thisevening, officials will come around and check to see ifthis is the case. The camera crews, perched likebuzzards on rooftops, only add to the effect. People file in silently and sign in. The reaping is agood opportunity for the Capitol to keep tabs on thepopulation as well.

Twelve- through eighteen-year-olds are herded into roped areas marked off by ages,the oldest in the front, the young ones, like Prim,toward the back. Most refuse dealing with the racketeers butcarefully, carefully.

I could beshot on a daily basis for hunting, but the appetites ofthose in charge protect me. Not everyone can claimthe same. Anyway, Gale and I agree that if we have to choosebetween dying of hunger and a bullet in the head, thebullet would be much quicker. The space gets tighter, more claustrophobic as peoplearrive. I find myself standing in a clump of sixteens from theSeam.

We all exchange terse nods then focus ourattention on the temporary stage that is set up beforethe Justice Building.

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It holds three chairs, a podium,and two large glass balls, one for the boys and one forthe girls. Twenty of them have Katniss Everdeen written onthem in careful handwriting.

They murmur to each other and then lookwith concern at the empty seat. Just as the town clock strikes two, the mayor stepsup to the podium and begins to read. He tells of the history of Panem, thecountry that rose up out of the ashes of a place thatwas once called North America. He lists the disasters,the droughts, the storms, the fires, the encroachingseas that swallowed up so much of the land, thebrutal war for what little sustenance remained. Theresult was Panem, a shining Capitol ringed bythirteen districts, which brought peace and prosperityto its citizens.

Then came the Dark Days, the uprisingof the districts against the Capitol. Twelve weredefeated, the thirteenth obliterated. The Treaty ofTreason gave us the new laws to guarantee peaceand, as our yearly reminder that the Dark Days mustnever be repeated, it gave us the Hunger Games. The rules of the Hunger Games are simple. Inpunishment for the uprising, each of the twelvedistricts must provide one girl and one boy, calledtributes, to participate.

The twenty-four tributes willbe imprisoned in a vast outdoor arena that could holdanything from a burning desert to a frozen wasteland. Over a period of several weeks, the competitors mustfight to the death. The last tribute standing wins.

How little chance we would stand of survivinganother rebellion. Whatever words they use, the real message isclear. If you lift afinger, we will destroy every last one of you. Just aswe did in District Thirteen. To make it humiliating as well as torturous, theCapitol requires us to treat the Hunger Games as afestivity, a sporting event pitting every district againstthe others.

The last tribute alive receives a life of easeback home, and their district will be showered withprizes, largely consisting of food.

All year, the Capitolwill show the winning district gifts of grain and oiland even delicacies like sugar while the rest of usbattle starvation. Then he reads the list of past District 12 victors. Inseventy-four years, we have had exactly two. Only oneis still alive. Haymitch Abernathy, a paunchy, middle-aged man, who at this moment appears holleringsomething unintelligible, staggers onto the stage, andfalls into the third chair.

The mayor looks distressed. Since all of this is beingtelevised, right now District 12 is the laughingstock ofPanem, and he knows it. He quickly tries to pull theattention back to the reaping by introducing EffieTrinket. And may the odds be ever in your favor! Through the crowd, I spot Gale looking back at mewith a ghost of a smile. As reapings go, this one atleast has a slight entertainment factor. But suddenly Iam thinking of Gale and his forty-two names in thatbig glass ball and how the odds are not in his favor.

Not compared to a lot of the boys. She reaches in, digs herhand deep into the ball, and pulls out a slip of paper. Effie Trinket crosses back to the podium, smoothesthe slip of paper, and reads out the name in a clearvoice. One time, when I was in a blind in a tree, waitingmotionless for game to wander by, I dozed off and fellten feet to the ground, landing on my back.

It was asif the impact had knocked every wisp of air from mylungs, and I lay there struggling to inhale, to exhale,to do anything. Someone isgripping my arm, a boy from the Seam, and I thinkmaybe I started to fall and he caught me.

There must have been some mistake. Prim was one slip of paper in thousands! Taken the tesserae, refused to let her dothe same? One slip. One slip in thousands. The oddshad been entirely in her favor. Somewhere far away, I can hear the crowdmurmuring unhappily as they always do when atwelve-year-old gets chosen because no one thinksthis is fair.

And then I see her, the blood drained fromher face, hands clenched in fists at her sides, walkingwith stiff, small steps up toward the stage, passingme, and I see the back of her blouse has becomeuntucked and hangs out over her skirt.

The other kids make wayimmediately allowing me a straight path to the stage. I reach her just as she is about to mount the steps. With one sweep of my arm, I push her behind me.

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In some districts, in which winning thereaping is such a great honor, people are eager to risktheir lives, the volunteering is complicated.

But inDistrict 12, where the wordtribute is pretty muchsynonymous with the word corpse, volunteers are allbut extinct. I am the girl who brings the strawberries. Thegirl his daughter might have spoken of on occasion. The girl who five years ago stood huddled with hermother and sister, as he presented her, the oldestchild, with a medal of valor.

A medal for her father,vaporized in the mines. Does he remember that? Prim is screaming hysterically behind me. A weakling. I will give no one that satisfaction. I steel myself andclimb the steps. Come on, everybody! To the everlasting credit of the people of District 12,not one person claps. Not even the ones holdingbetting slips, the ones who are usually beyond caring.

Possibly because they know me from the Hob, orknew my father, or have encountered Prim, who noone can help loving. So instead of acknowledgingapplause, I stand there unmoving while they take partin the boldest form of dissent they can manage.

Which says we do not agree. We do notcondone. All of this is wrong. Then something unexpected happens. At first one,then another, then almost every member of the crowdtouches the three middle fingers of their left hand totheir lips and holds it out to me. It is an old andrarely used gesture of our district, occasionally seenat funerals. It means thanks, it means admiration, itmeans good-bye to someone you love.

Now I am truly in danger of crying, but fortunatelyHaymitch chooses this time to come staggering acrossthe stage to congratulate me. Look atthis one! Is he addressing the audience or is he so drunk hemight actually be taunting the Capitol?

With every cameragleefully trained on him, I have just enough time torelease the small, choked sound in my throat andcompose myself. I put my hands behind my back andstare into the distance. I can see the hills I climbed this morning with Gale. For a moment, I yearn for something Becausewho else would have volunteered for Prim? Haymitch is whisked away on a stretcher, and EffieTrinket is trying to get the ball rolling again.

Oh, no, I think. Not him. Because I recognize thisname, although I have never spoken directly to itsowner. Peeta Mellark. No, the odds are not in my favor today. I watch himas he makes his way toward the stage. Mediumheight, stocky build, ashy blond hair that falls inwaves overhis forehead. Yet he climbs steadily onto thestage and takes his place. Effie Trinket asks for volunteers, but no one stepsforward. This is standard. Family devotion only goes so far for most people onreaping day.

What I did was the radical thing. Why him? I think. Peeta Mellark and I are not friends. Not even neighbors. Our only realinteraction happened years ago. It was during the worst time.

My father had beenkilled in the mine accident three months earlier in thebitterest January anyone could remember. Thenumbness of his loss had passed, and the pain wouldhit me out of nowhere, doubling me over, racking mybody with sobs. Where are you? I would cry out in mymind. Where have you gone? Of course, there wasnever any answer. The district had given us a small amount of money ascompensation for his death, enough to cover onemonth of grieving at which time my mother would beexpected to get a job.

No amount ofpleading from Prim seemed to affect her. I was terrified. I suppose now that my mother waslocked in some dark world of sadness, but at thetime, all I knew was that I had lost not only a father,but a mother as well. At eleven years old, with Primjust seven, I took over as head of the family. Therewas no choice. I bought our food at the market andcooked it as best I could and tried to keep Prim andmyself looking presentable.

Because if it had becomeknown that my mother could no longer care for us,25 P a g e The Hunger Games — Suzanne Collins The sadness, themarks of angry hands on their faces, thehopelessness that curled their shoulders forward. Icould never let that happen to Prim.

The community home would crush her like abug. So I kept our predicament a secret. But the money ran out and we were slowly starving todeath.

I kept tellingmyself if I could only hold out until May, just May8th, I would turn twelve and be able to sign up for thetesserae and get that precious grain and oil to feedus.

Only there were still several weeks to go. We couldwell be dead by then. Children from a family with too many to feed.

Those injured in the mines. Straggling through thestreets. And one day, you come upon them sittingmotionless against a wall or lying in the Meadow, youhear the wails from a house, and the Peacekeepersare called in to retrieve the body. Starvation is neverthe cause of death officially. But that fools no one. On the afternoon of my encounter with Peeta Mellark,the rain was falling in relentless icy sheets.

Bythe time the market closed, I was shaking so hard Idropped my bundle of baby clothes in a mud puddle. Besides, no one wantedthose clothes. Because at home was my motherwith her dead eyes and my little sister, with herhollow cheeks and cracked lips. I found myself stumbling along a muddy lane behindthe shops that serve the wealthiest townspeople. Themerchants live above their businesses, so I wasessentially in their backyards.

I remember theoutlines of garden beds not yet planted for the spring,a goat or two in a pen, one sodden dog tied to a post,hunched defeated in the muck. All forms of stealing are forbidden in District Punishable by death. But it crossed my mind thatthere might be something in the trash bins, and thosewere fair game. Unfortunately, the bins had just been emptied. The ovens were inthe back, and a golden glow spilled out the openkitchen door. The words were ugly and I had nodefense.

He stuck with the town kids, so how would I? His mother went back into the bakery, grumbling, buthe must have been watching me as I made my waybehind the pen that held their pig and leaned againstthe far side of an old apple tree. Myknees buckled and I slid down the tree trunk to itsroots.

It was too much. I was too sick and weak andtired, oh, so tired. Let them call the Peacekeepers andtake us to the community home, I thought. Or betteryet, let me die right here in the rain. There was a clatter in the bakery and I heard thewoman screaming again and the sound of a blow, andI vaguely wondered what was going on. It was the boy. In his arms, he carried twolarge loaves of bread that must have fallen into thefire because the crusts were scorched black.

Why not? No one decent will buy burnedbread! He began to tear off chunks from the burned partsand toss them into the trough, and the front bakerybell rung and the mother disappeared to help acustomer. The boy never even glanced my way, but I waswatching him. Because of the bread, because of thered weal that stood out on his cheekbone. What hadshe hit him with? My parents never hit us.

The boy took one look back to the bakery as ifchecking that the coast was clear, then, his attentionback on the pig, he threw a loaf of bread in mydirection. The second quickly followed, and hesloshed back to the bakery, closing the kitchen doortightly behind him. I stared at the loaves in disbelief. They were fine,perfect really, except for the burned areas.

Did hemean for me to have them? He must have. Becausethere they were at my feet. Before anyone couldwitness what had happened I shoved the loaves upunder my shirt, wrapped the hunting jacket tightlyabout me, and walked swiftly away.

The heat of thebread burned into my skin, but I clutched it tighter,clinging to life. By the time I reached home, the loaves had cooledsomewhat, but the insides were still warm. Iscraped off the black stuff and sliced the bread.

Weate an entire loaf, slice by slice. It was good heartybread, filled with raisins and nuts. I put my clothes to dry at the fire, crawled into bed,and fell into a dreamless sleep. Might have droppedthe loaves into the flames, knowing it meant beingpunished, and then delivered them to me. But Idismissed this. It must have been an accident. Whywould he have done it? Still,just throwing me the bread was an enormouskindness that would have surely resulted in a beatingif discovered.

We ate slices of bread for breakfast and headed toschool. It was as if spring had come overnight. Warmsweet air.

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Fluffy clouds. At school, I passed the boy inthe hall, his cheek had swelled up and his eye hadblackened. But as I collected Primand started for home that afternoon, I found himstaring at me from across the school yard. Our eyesmet for only a second, then he turned his head away. The first dandelion of the year. A bell went offin my head. In writing The Hunger Games, Collins drew upon Greek mythology, Roman gladiatorial games, and contemporary reality television for thematic content.

It has since been released in paperback and also as an audiobook and ebook. After an initial print of ,, the book had sold , copies by February Since its release, The Hunger Games has been translated into 26 languages, and publishing rights have been sold in 38 territories. A film adaptation, directed by Gary Ross and co-written and co-produced by Collins herself, was released in Download The Hunger Games 1 Pdf.

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