A cool breeze chills me as I walk along a stone path with my cousin, my cousin's parents, and my parents. Me and my cousin are chatting when he brings up the question. The question. "Maple, who do you think will be reaped?" He's my best friend, but he's not as... respectful as me. He makes the games sound like a joke.

We're heading to the reaping. Me and my cousin, Birch are 13 years old so we probably won't get reaped. We haven't taken tesserae, so the odds are certainly in our favor. Which brings the question, if we don't get reaped, who will? I don't know how to respond. "I don't know," I say truthfully.

Finally, after a long silence, we reach the square. Pity that it's held here, I mean it's one of my favorite places. Our parents look at us sadly, before telling us to go where we're supposed to be. The 13 years olds are put near the back, behind the 14 year olds and in front of the 12 year olds.

We seem to be one of the last ones there, because as soon as we're with the other 13 year olds, Lioness, our escort, says: "Welcome, everybody, to the 171st Hunger Games! May the odds be ever in your favor! Now, let's begin... ladies first!" Her hand reaches inside the female reaping ball, and I hope it's not me.

"And the female tribute from District 7 is... Maple Lumber!" It's me it's me it's me it's me. That's what I think as I walk up to the stage. Birch stares at me with shocked eyes. He would volunteer for me if he was a girl. But he isn't.

I try to remain calm, but my hands are sweaty and I know there are tears in my eyes as I slowly climb up the stage.


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