The winner of today’s sponsorship vote is…Jackie Fortier of District 2!
Congrats, Alexandra, you get a free attribute point added to your lowest attribute (Strength).
“Warning. Do not attempt to open door. Please stand against a wall.”
The friendly female voice stirs me from my fatigued stupor. I’m on guard duty, but hunger, thirst, and my wounds have taken their toll on me, and I’m exhausted (Attribute Point Lost).
Drew helps me to my feet and walks me over to the wall opposite the door as Dr. Bieber announces that we’ll be handling our alliance in the same way as other alliances have in the past.
“Once the feast starts, it’s every man for himself. I won’t be killing any of you once we get in there though, and I expect the same from the rest of you.”
“Works for me,” says Drew, holding my hand tightly. Chris gives an affirmative grunt and pulls out his katana, ready for action.
Drew turns to me and gives me a smile that eases some of the fear that’s begun to bubble up inside me.
“I’m staying with you until the end. Don’t worry.”
I stare back at him blankly, not sure what my reaction should be. It’s obvious that he and I are the weak links in our alliance at the moment. And even though I’m glad he’s not going to leave me alone to die, I can’t help but think his chances of getting out of here alive would substantially increase if he went at things solo.
I end up squeezing his hand and smiling back. There’s nothing I could say to make him leave. And I guess, deep down, I really don’t want him to.
I’m still smiling at him as the room jerks suddenly. Whatever artificial gravity was holding us to the floor suddenly shuts off, and the four of us begin to free-float.
I feel my feet lift slightly off the floor and immediately start to panic, which results in my nudging the wall against my back and floating helplessly towards the center of the room. As I tumble around slowly, kicking and fruitlessly trying to stop my spins, my foot kicks the spear that I left sitting on the floor. The handle of the weapon flies up past my face, and I barely manage to grab it out of the air.
Still spinning, I take a couple deep breaths, centering myself. Then, as I near the opposite wall, I reach out with my spear and brace it against the edge of the floor and the wall, moving it just so as to stop my spinning.
No longer flipping around, I glide across the room, pushing my spear off of the walls to keep myself in motion.
I do this until I hear a whirring noise at the door. It opens, and I launch myself over to the open doorframe, grabbing the edge and holding myself steady. I stare into the biggest room I’ve ever seen.
The room is so stunning that I’m forced to completely abandon my plan to rush into the room and grab everything I can before the other tributes get a chance to move. It’s probably the largest room I’ve ever seen. Or maybe it just seems that way after almost two weeks of wandering through hallways and resting in small rooms.
Black cables shoot out from the four corners of the room, all connecting to a giant floating sphere in the center. The sphere looks like a jungle gym, octagonal openings all connecting to each other and forming the huge circle. In the center of this circle floats supplies. I can see food and water, as well as weapons, all in different clusters within the sphere.
Movement below me catches my eye, and I look down to see the girl from 2 launch herself out from a door in the floor. I’m taken off guard for a moment before remembering that I’m floating in the doorway of my room. No more gravity means no more “floor”.
I’m still contemplating this as a whirring noise behind me causes me to twist my head around. The back wall of my room is moving towards me, quickly. I leap out of the room, bow in hand, just as the wall slams into the wall that the doorframe is cut out of.
I fly towards the great sphere, looking around the room as the other tributes fly haphazardly out of their respective rooms.
Kelly and Drew launch themselves out of the room, and I’m right behind them, bracing myself against the doorframe and speeding towards the sphere in the center of the room like a missile, katana held firmly in my hands.
A scream behind me grabs my attention, and I look back over my shoulder just as the advancing wall smashes into Chris, who is only halfway out the door (Attribute Point Lost). The sound of the lower half of his body being pulverized between the two walls sends a wave of nausea through my body, and I turn my head away as he continues to scream.
Someone on the other side of the sphere is screaming. I can’t see who from where I am. Ahead of me, Jackie has landed on the giant sphere, and is reaching in and grabbing as much food as she can. I land right next to her, grabbing the metal bars and holding on as my momentum tries to launch me back off the sphere.
“Grab some water,” Jackie says, gesturing to a six-pack of water floating near me.
I reach in through one of the octagons and grab for it, nudging a couple swords out of the way gingerly.
On the other side of the room, the screams still haven’t stopped.
I land on the sphere and look up as Alex barrels towards the woman from 9, screaming, as he usually does. She sees him coming, and brings up her katana to slice at him. In any other situation, Alex would have been cut in two. But the lack of gravity causes her body to start spinning as soon as she pulls her weapon back. She is unable to do anything as Alex slams into her. The two of them fly off out of my view, both screaming.
I reach into the sphere and pull out a backpack, stuffing it with as much food and water as I can. Through my grip on the metal bar, I can feel the vibrations of other tributes on the sphere, and I constantly check over my shoulder to make sure no one’s crawling towards me. The screaming boy from 6, pinned between the two walls of his room, finally stops screaming, and a cannon fires.
Kelly collects supplies as I keep watch, knives in hand. Above me, Dr. Bieber and the boy from 3 struggle with each other as they float through the air. It’s enough to distract me from the woman from 7 who suddenly flies into view, a backpack on her shoulder and an arrow in her bow. She launches the arrow as she flies away from the sphere. I dodge it quickly, before realizing with horror that it wasn’t aimed at me.
A sudden force in my head sends me spiraling away from the sphere, tumbling slowly. A half-second later, I stop feeling altogether.
A cannon fires, and the boy from 9 screams in agony as his ally floats away from the sphere, my arrow lodged in her head and spots of blood floating in place as they drift out of the wound.
The boy launches himself at me impulsively, brandishing a knife, and I suddenly realize that maybe killing the girl wasn’t such a good idea. I quickly load an arrow into my bow, but he crashes into me before I can fire.
I plunge my katana into the boy from 3’s heart, and he stops fighting and goes still, finally. A cannon fires, and I stick my foot up against his chest and gently push him off my sword, sending his body floating away.
I’m hurt, badly. The boy had a knife in his hand when he first crashed into me, and now it’s in my side (Three Attribute Points Lost). I gingerly pull it out, wincing at the pain, and then swing my arms around to stop my spinning.
I look up towards the sphere and see a few tributes hanging onto it. A body, which I quickly recognize as Kelly, spins and floats slowly in open air.
A backpack of supplies has floated out of the sphere; I launch myself towards it once my legs hit the floor, groaning in pain as my side starts to throb. I grab the backpack with my free hand, swing it over my shoulder quickly, and then grab onto one of the metal bars of the sphere before I bounce off of it and fly off in another direction.
The girl from 1 sees me land near her and starts to clamber over to me, but I manage to orient myself and launch back towards the room I came out of. The wall has retreated, so it’s assumedly safe to go back in, but I quickly regret my decision to jump.
Chris’s half-flattened body floats in the open doorway, surrounded by globules of blood. I can’t do anything to stop myself from smashing into him as I fly through the open door.
Just as I enter the room, the door slams shut behind me, and a whirring noise announces that the room has disconnected from the giant sphere room.
I reach inside my backpack and, thankfully, find some bandages. As I float around the room, I wrap my stomach with the bandages, staunching the blood that’s flowing out of my open wound. It’s not bleeding much right now, but that’s all going to change once the gravity comes back.
In any case, I’m still alive.
With one final kick, I launch the boy from 9 off of me and back towards the sphere. I groan in pain, my face and arms stinging from stab wounds and large gashes inflicted on me by the boy’s knife (Four Attribute Points Lost). My bow is gone, knocked out of my hands during the scuffle, and one of the boy’s legs has a few of my of my arrows jammed into it (Three Attribute Points Lost).
The momentum of my kick carries me back towards a wall at an odd angle, and I orient myself by twisting my arms, as painful as that is.
Looking around the room, I see that the walls of some rooms have opened back up.
Some, not all.
I do my best to launch myself towards an open door, still holding onto my backpack. My bow floats in the path I’ve chosen to take; I grab it out of the air.
As I float into the room, the door slams shut behind me. So that’s their game, then.
There were five tributes still in the room from what I saw, and only four doors left open. At least one more tribute is going to die.
I’d better have some some bandages in this backpack, or else I’m going to join them.
I peer around the edge of the sphere and come face to face with the girl from 1. She swings her sword at me, grunting fiercely. I duck and scramble away from her, holding her off with my spear.
This proves fruitless. A swing from her sword sends my spear flying off into the air, split down the middle.
Panicked, I reach into the sphere, hoping to grab something, anything.
My hand settles on some sort of container; I grab it and hurl it at the girl, hoping it’s anything but water.
The flask is not very hardy; it shatters against the girl’s face, and the orange liquid inside encircles her face in a blob.
The girl screams, and jumps back. Whatever’s in that liquid, it certainly isn’t friendly to skin.
As the girl floats off into the air, still screaming and wiping at her face with her shirt, I take the opportunity to grab a few more things from inside the sphere, including a new spear. Then I launch myself towards the only door left on my side of the room.
I did it. I got all my supplies, and I’m getting out of here without a scratch. Here’s hoping my luck will stick with me.
My face burns like nothing I’ve ever felt before. I grope around until I find a water bottle in my backpack, and squirt out a glob of water. Then I smash my face into it, hoping to find some relief from the acidic burns (Four Attribute Points Lost).
I feel my arm scrape against a wall, and then realize that I’ve somehow floated into a room. The door slams shut behind me.
My face still stinging, I check my backpack and realize, with some horror, that I’ve only got one water bottle left.
These Games need to end, now.
I float in my room, the last of my alliance, the last of the Careers. Finally alone.
Alexandra and I watch as the boy from 9 floats into a room, his arms full of supplies and three arrows jutting out of his leg. The door slams shut behind him, and I suddenly realize that the doors have been closing on their own as soon as one tribute enters the room. Which means…
I scramble away from Alexandra, searching for the last door. But she’s already caught on too. She crawls after me, screaming for me to wait, wait for her.
But I can’t do that any more. Not if I want to get out of here alive.
“We can both make it, Jackie! We can both make it!”
I see the door, finally. It looms on the far side of the room, calling for me. I line up my jump, bend my knees, and jump.
I hear a scream behind me, and then I feel Alexandra’s hands lock around my ankle. Panicked, I kick out, trying to get her to let go.
And let go she does. The force of my kick sends her flying towards the door, and sends me floating backwards.
Oh no. No no no no-
The last thing I see before I shoot into the room and the door slams shut is Jackie floating backwards towards the sphere, screaming in fear of what’s going to happen to her. I scream too, because we both could have made it. All we had to do was hold onto each other and float in at the exact same time. We both could have made it…
I float around my room, bouncing off the walls, waiting for the inevitable cannon fire.
I hold onto the sphere with sweaty palms, simply because I don’t know what else to do, where else to go. Maybe they’ll take pity on me. Maybe another door will open for me.
And in the last few moments of my life, it turns out I’m right.
The doors open, all of them. But the sudden rush of air tells me exactly what they’re opening up to: empty space.
It’s useless to try and hold on. I scream as my hands are ripped from the sphere and I fly towards one of the open doors, inhaling a big breath of air, my last breath.
And then I’m outside, and the pain is unimaginable. Out in the vacuum of space, a sudden pressure in my lungs causes me to exhale the breath I was holding. I gasp, trying to take in air, and finding nothing.
The last thing I see before I lose consciousness five seconds later is a sea of darkness. The last thing I think is how cold and lonely dying really is.
Strongest Tribute: Alexandra Browne (D10 Female)
Most Agile Tributes: Dr. Alison Gibson (D7 Female) and Dr Christina Bieber-Lake (D9 Female)
Most Cunning Tributes: Dr. Alison Gibson (D7 Female) and Alexandra Browne (D10 Female)
Most Charming Tributes: Dr. Alison Gibson (D7 Female) and Dr. Christina Bieber-Lake (D9 Female)
Strongest Overall Tribute: Dr. Alison Gibson (D7 Female)
The benchmark for Day 14 has been posted on the home page!