The winner of today’s sponsorship vote is…Kylie Marble of District 10!
Congrats Kylie, you get a free attribute point added to your lowest attribute (Agility).
Finally reaching the edge of the jungle, I crouch and look across the open Cornucopia plain. The area is completely empty. No tributes, no muttations, and no feast. Yet.
I’ve been on defensive mode ever since the Games started, and in the end all it got me was a butchered alliance. It’s time to go on the offensive.
Kylie and Amanda are still alive. Both are fans of medium and long-range weapons, so I don’t expect to see them in a close combat situation. Hopefully I’ll be able to pick them off once they rush out of the jungle.
The male from 4 is the last Career standing, which automatically makes him the most dangerous tribute in my mind. He held no punches during training, and made it clear to everyone watching him that he was a natural-born killer.
The other four tributes? I don’t know. I’ve racked my brain to recall anything I can about their skillsets, trying to make a plan of attack.
I can’t remember anything.
I don’t stand a chance rushing into the impending battle. So I’ll wait here for the fighting to die down, and then pick off whoever’s left. If I’m lucky, this battle will be the final encounter of the Games. If I’m lucky, I’ll be heading home very soon.
Hidden in shadow deep inside the Cornucopia with Jess, I rock back and forth with excitement. God shall be most pleased with the blood I spill today. It’s taking everything within me to keep the promise I made to Jess not to attack her until after the feast is over.
I could do it right now! Just reach over and grab her by the neck, slam her head against the wall over and over until the shadows we both stand in reek of death!
But no no no, she’d scream and then they’d all know where I was hiding and run away. Jess is smart, she knows I want her blood as badly as I want all of their blood.
“In due time,” whispers God in my ear, and I grin and rub my hands together in anticipation.
I’m about to move up closer to the edge of the Cornucopia when approaching footsteps send me scrambling behind a large rock, quickly loading a rock into my slingshot. The male from 10 passes without noticing me, a small knife gripped in his hand, and crouches right in the spot I was headed to. Even from a distance away, I can hear his stomach growling. He must not have had any supplies to lose yesterday.
A whirring noise sounds from somewhere in the field, and I peer past the boy to see tables rising out of the ground around the Cornucopia.
The sight of a table full of food is enough to nearly send me bolting out of the trees, but I manage to hold back and observe the area before blindly rushing forward. Three tables are in sight, one with food, another with weapons, and the third with medicine and bandages. There has to be a fourth table with water behind the Cornucopia, out of sight.
I make up my mind to rush the food and water tables, and am about to step out when the woman from 7 suddenly rushes out of the trees to my left, heading straight for the mouth of the Cornucopia.
I have no time to waste. Reaching into my backpack and pulling out my first Molotov cocktail, I light the cloth cap with a match and toss it towards the opening of the Cornucopia.
Jess and Luke’s heads pop out right before the bottle explodes at their feet, sending a fireball into the sky and the two of them sprawling back into the Cornucopia. The tree resin I poured around the Cornucopia days ago in preparation lights as the fireball hits it, and a ring of fire encircles the Cornucopia, trapping my former allies inside it.
The woman from 7 rushes over to the food table and starts filling an empty backpack, constantly looking in every direction for danger. Another tribute, the male from 6, breaks out of the trees and rushes towards her and the food table, quickly catching her attention. I take the opportunity to make a run for the water table, keeping an eye out for Julia and her bow.
The woman from 7 reaches into her backpack to grab another one of her fire concoctions, but I don’t stop running towards her. Nothing to lose now.
She’s lit another bottle and is about to throw it when an arrow suddenly whizzes over my shoulder and smashes through it. The bottle explodes in the woman’s hand, and she’s immediately set ablaze.
I notch another arrow into my bow as the male from 6 rushes past the screaming female from 7. The fire spreads across her body as I fire another arrow at her. It misses her, but does penetrate her backpack. Even from my position at the edge of the forest, I’m thrown back by the heat of the fireball that explodes out of her backpack as whatever Molotov cocktails she has in it are ignited.
My pack full of water, I hurry over to the food table just as the male from 6 leaves it. We pass each other without even a glance, our eyes both locked on the burning woman from 7 who has now fallen to the ground in an immolated heap. Her cannon fires just as I grab two loaves of bread and a few apples, shoving them into my backpack as I run back towards the forest, having lived to fight another day.
The male from 10 finally makes a run for it, allowing me to break out of the trees behind him after a moment. He heads for the water while I head for the food table.
We both reach our respective locations just as the fire dies down in front of the Cornucopia, and the remnants of the Career alliance rush out of the dark interior.
The male from 6 doesn’t even see me coming. His eyes are still on Maureen’s burning corpse as I launch an arrow through his neck. He falls to the ground gagging and choking as I step over him and start filling a bag with food.
An arrow whizzes past my head, and I whirl around to see the woman from 3 standing a ways off on the edge of the field. Walking swiftly, I load up my crossbow while dodging another of her arrows.
I haven’t missed a shot in the Games yet, and the arrow I fire doesn’t miss either, judging from the yelp of pain and subsequent screams that erupt from the edge of the forest as the woman drops to the ground. Satisfied, I turn around and come face to face with the woman from 11, who’s been watching me intensely as she stuffs food into her bag.
I reach for an arrow, only to find that my quiver is completely empty. The woman takes the opportunity to bolt for the treeline, just as the boy from 6’s cannon fires.
Having retrieved a nice hand axe from the weapons table, I start running around the side of the Cornucopia towards the food table on the other side.
I don’t even take five steps before the man from 4 rounds the corner, laughing and charging at me. Panicked, I launch my hand axe at him, and watch it veer way off to the right of his chest.
Those last few seconds before he reaches me are the longest seconds I’ve ever lived. It’s only right before he knocks me to the ground that I realize just how little of a chance I had to win. How this was always going to happen. How I was always going to die.
I reach the treeline and turn to observe the battlefield one final time. The burning woman’s corpse sends a column of smoke into the sky, a perfect backdrop as the woman from 12 calmly picks her way through the remaining food on the table. She saunters over to the weapon table, pausing only briefly to glance at the man from 4 pounding his fists into the man from 10’s face. I force myself to look away from it all, and head back into the jungle, alive and uninjured.
Probing feebly at the arrow that’s embedded itself into my left eye, I moan and crawl through the jungle, away from the approaching footsteps.
I know it’s over. That I’ve lost.
The woman from 12 steps past me and turns on her heel, blocking my path.
I stop crawling and force myself to look up at her, smelling the smoke on her clothes from the burning battlefield.
The woman from 3 stares up at me with gritty defiance painted across her face, her one good eye shooting daggers at me. I stare back for a moment in hesitation, noting the similarities between us, noting how if not for circumstance, it could be me staring up at her with only one eye. The thought sends a chill up my spine.
A cannon fires, signaling that Luke’s prolonged torture of the man from 10 is over. He and his God have their blood now.
I don’t want blood. I just want to go home.
So I fire an arrow through the woman from 3’s temple, ending her life mercifully quickly. Her cannon echoes in my head for hours as I trek deeper into the jungle, finally on my own.
Strongest Tribute: Luke Vander Ploeg (D4 M)
Most Agile Tributes: Kylie Marble (D10 F) and Jess Edelblut (D12 F)
Most Cunning Tribute: Luke Vander Ploeg (D4 M)
Most Charming Tribute: Kylie Marble (D10 F)
Strongest Overall Tribute: Kylie Marble (D10 F)
Alliances have been nullified and attribute scores have been altered due to today’s events. Please note the changes on their respective pages.
The benchmark for Day Thirteen has been posted on the home page!