Today's blog post if it had been written
by Suzanne Collins. Apologies to all those who haven't ever read or watched The
Hunger Games Trilogy...
Day 8 in the arena
They sat in uncomfortable silence as their eyes
shifted from face to face. None knowing what the capital had in store for them
next but all filled with a sense of dread.
Meanwhile in Pan-Am(a) the head game-maker
"Roberto" scratched at his over-styled facial hair; eyebrows knitted
together and a look fixed with concentration as he gazed down at his screen
showing the small turquoise sail boat becalmed in the still blue waters. He'd
watched with glee as the exhausted tributes threw the fresh stores overboard;
the rotten eggs, over-ripened fruit and even the staples such as Yuka which
they'd have expected to last for weeks. It was a master stroke to have filled
the cornucopia with such a festering rotten harvest and painted it bright and
delicious looking so that the tributes had risked life and limb carrying it
back to the sanctuary of their ship believing they had weeks of fresh food.
Roberto let out a cackle of evil laughter and started rearranging items on his
screen. The mutts were in place on the bow. At least half a dozen
brightly-beaked birds with red feet and dead eyes. Genetically engineered by
the capital these creatures appear dumb and harmless but they were designed to
reek havoc at the touch of the game-maker's button. They would have their
moment of stardom but first to weaken the tributes with a mighty squall. A
little thunder and lightning; a lot of rain, but no wind… if he allowed
them to sail and make any progress they would be harder to break. Their
perseverance had allowed them several days of edging closer to their
destination at a rate of just 60 or 70 nautical miles each day but as he sucked
the air from the arena leaving the small ship wallowing in calm seas he knew
they'd make no more than 18 nautical miles today however much support they had
from the districts; however determined they were.
The previous night the game-maker had allowed the
tributes to sight others in the arena; to remind them that the capital was not
their only enemy. Two ships each as large as the presidential palace appeared
on the tributes small screen; they each passed several miles away; the lights
of one just about visible to a keenly trained eye, the second only ever
appearing as a small dot on the screen.
Magpie fondled Meeps ears softly and looked into
his sweet face. This arena was no place for an innocent. Meep rubbed his face
against her hand in a trusting and apparently affectionate way. "That's
it", he thought to himself "keep on petting me; I'll be the last
tribute standing in these games". As Jamie cursed below and an
unidentified vegetable soared passed their heads and over the gunwhales of the
boat Meep knew they were getting ever closer to breaking into the canned
stores... and that meant tuna.
As the lightening flashed and the rain fell
Roberto looked on as the tributes scrambled around on deck filling buckets with
rainwater. They took a small plastic vessel to the mast and strapped it in
place allowing gallons of water to run down their sails and collecting it into
cans. The Game-maker sneered; the tributes had made the most of his latest
move. Let them have their moment. The fresh water would give them some hope...
and back home their family and friends would be cheering... but he still had
the mutts. Poised. Ready. He was far too clever to be outmaneuvered by these
simple tributes from the districts and their strange little cat. He threw back
his head and roared with laughter.
In the arena the canon fired loudly three times
into the sky and the tributes cast their faces upwards to see who today's
fallen were. Emblazoned in the sky above them came the roll call of the vessels
that had succumbed that day; those that had yielded to the evil game-makers
will; packed away their sails and turned on their engines. Looking away in
disgust Magpie disappeared into the galley to defiantly make Hummus.
***None of the names used in this text are
fictional. Any legal representatives of the Panamanian Green Grocer
"Roberto" should direct communications to Hamble Warrior's Head of
Communications Claire Shaw at Hamble Warrior Shoreside HQ, Repton, Derby***