I walk to the town square and sit down on the fountain. I throw a penny in and make a wish. I wish my name doesn't get called at the reaping today. I say in my head and walk to the market. I walk in and buy some bread from the baker and some cherries. I run back home and hand my dad the bread and cherries. He smiles at me and I kiss his cheek.
"Is mom home?" I ask and he shakes his head. I roll my eyes. She's almost never home anymore. It's like she doesn't even want to be part of our family anymore. I doubt she even cares I don't have a single friend in the world. I hear someone run in the door and see my older brother walk in. I smile and he hugs me.
"I layed a reaping dress out for you." He whispers in my ear and I smile. I walk in my room and look at the beautiful white dress on the bed I slip off my clothes and put the dress on and slip on my cream-colored flats. I fishtail braid my hair over my shoulder and kiss walk out. My father smiles me and I hug him.
"You look beautiful, Stevie." He says and I smile.
"Thank-you, daddy." I reply and Paul walks in. He smiles when he sees me.
"I knew you'd look beautiful in that dress. It was mom's reaping dress once, you know." He says and I chuckle.
"Thank-you big brother, now shouldn't we start getting there?" I ask him and he nods. He leads me down and we wait in line next to each other to get our fingers pricked. I feel a single tear slide down my cheek, and Paul wipes it away. He smiles sadly down at me and kisses my forehead. I smile a little and hold out my index finger. The man pricks it and I walk off to the seventeen year old section. I'm one year younger than Paul. I look over at him and he smiles weakly. I'm startled bye Effie Trinket tapping the michrophone. I look up and she introduces the movie. I watch the terrible thing that tells about why the Hunger Games started.
"Ladies first!" Effie pipes after the movie is over. She walks over to the reaping bowl and I am praying the name isn't mine. "Primrose Everdeen!" A little girl walks out and starts walking towards the stage. An older girl comes out and screams her name. "I volunteer! I volunteer as tribute!" She screams and pushes the smaller girl behind her. She walks on the stage and Effie asks her name.
"Katniss Everdeen." She says staring somewhere off into the distance.
"I'll bet my buttons that was your sister!" She says and the girl nods. "Now for the boys." She says and walks over to the other ball. She takes a name and walks back over to the microphone."Paul Kunze!" She calls and I feel my heart stop. A tear comes down my cheek and I look at him as he walks up to the stage.
I run into my brother's arms and cry into his shoulder. He pats my back and strokes my hair."Paul, listen to me, you have to win for me. I don't care who you kill, just win. And try as hard as you can to win. I love you." I tell him and he smiles weakly and kisses my head.
"I promise, I love you, too." He tells me and I smile sadly at him. A peacekeeper comes in the room and I cling to my brother and the peacekeeper grabs my arm and pulls me out. I run to the fence crying and crying and sit there in the Meadow. Someone snaps a twig and my head shoots up and I look back in the direction of the noise. I see a tall, handsome boy with dark hair standing there. He walks over to me and sits down next to me examining me.
"Why are you crying?" He asks and I look at him.
"My brother, he got reaped." I say and wipe a tear away from my cheek.
"My best friend got reaped. She's like my sister." He says and I nod. I put my head in my hands and cry even harder. The boy rubs my back and I look at him.
"My name is Stevie, what's yours?" I ask him and he smiles a little down at me.
"Gale, Gale Hawthorne." He says and I smile weakly up at him. I feel another tear come down my cheek and wipe it away again."Why aren't you crying, your best friend got reaped?" I ask him and he chuckles a little."I'm a boy, we don't cry." He says and that makes me a little mad.
"I could make you cry!" I squeal and he laughs.
"How, you don't even know me?" He asks and I shrug.
"I don't know, but I could if I did." I say and he laughs again.
"You're funny, Stevie." He says and puts an arm around my shoulders.
"Thanks. You come here often?" I ask him and he nods running a hand through my long blond hair. "Are you flirting with me?" I ask him and he chuckles a little.
"Me? Flirt with you? Completely likely." He chuckles and I smile and punch his arm. I giggle and he looks down at me in surprise. "Did you just laugh?" He asks and I nod.
"Yeah, why? Got a problem with it?" I ask him and he shakes his head.
"Nope. You're laugh is adorable." He says and I blush. "Don't blush, Stevie, it's just a compliment."
"From a guy. And unless you count my brother, I've never been given a compliment from a guy before. Especially a cute one." I say and slam my hand over my mouth and look nervously down at my feet. He laughs a little and taps my shoulder. I flutter my eyes up to look at him and he's smirking down at me.
"You're cute, too." He says and I smile.
"Really, because last time I looked in the mirror it almost broke." I say and he shakes his head and wraps an arm around my waist."Don't talk about my beautiful Stevie that way." He says and I give him a confused look just before he crashes his lips to mine.
I can't stop thinking about Gale. Ever since he kissed me I couldn't stop thinking about him. Do I like him? I don't know. He just ran off after he kissed me. Who does that? He didn't even give me time to say something to him! I really wish he wouldn't have ran off. But he must've thought I didn't like him because I was too startled to kiss him back. I change into black pants and a white t-shirt. I put my brother's old jacket on and his old combat boots, and braid my hair back. I run to the Seam and see Gale walking back to his house with a dead wild turkey in his arms. I run over to him and tap his shoulder. He turns around and sees me and drops the wild turkey.
"We need to talk." I tell him and he runs in his house and puts the turkey down and runs back out.
"Why?" He asks.
"You know why, Hawthorne." I tell him and he nods. I take his hand and we climb over the fence and run until we're fourty yards from the fence. "What in the world were you thinking when you kissed me?!" I asked him and he looks to.
"I was thinking that I loved you! That I always have! And that I was finally doing the thing I wanted to do most!" He yells at me.
"What are you talking about? You knew me for five minutes!" I snap at him and then I start to think. He was that boy who kept kicking my chair when I was seven. He was that boy that gave me a red carnation on Valentine's Day when I was fourteen. He was that boy who was always there, but I never realized it. "Oh Gale, I'm so sorry." I say stepping a little closer to him.
"I've loved you ever since I was eight and you were seven and I kept kicking your chair." He chuckled a little at the memory. "Do you remember that? Do you remember that red carnation I sent you when you fourteen signed, GH? That was me. Remember what it said?" He asks me and I smile and nod.
"I love you, too." I tell him and he kisses me, and this time I kiss him back. He pulls away and backs away a little and before he runs again I grab his hand and pull him back to me. "Don't run away, Gale, why would you?" I ask him and he shrugs.
"I'm scared you'll break my heart." He tells me and I wrap my arms around his neck.
"I promise I won't." I tell him and kiss him again. He wraps his arms around my waist and kisses me back immediatley. He runs a hand through my hair and I caress his cheek. He pulls away and kisses my cheek. I kiss his and he smiles. "I really promise." I tell him and he smiles even more. "I love you so much." He tells me and I smile. He caresses my cheek and runs a warm hand through my hair.
"Why did you love all that time, and never tell me?" I ask him and he chuckles.
"You're sweet, you're beautiful. Do you remember when I got hurt playing soccer that one time in gym class? Everyone else ignored me, but you helped me out, and walked me to the nurse's office. You don't know how much I wanted to kiss you, Stevie."
TBC. . .