She is made from the blood of victors.
Her name is Clove, and the Seventy-Fourth Hunger Games will be her games. They will remember her as they remember Finnick Odair and his trident or Johanna Mason's axe. People will talk of her, with her vicious smile and exemplary knife skills with awe and wonder, she will shine.
Her mother, who won her games by fucking all the competitors she came across and killing them whilst they slept, has past her time--she is old, now. The woman struggles to look at her daughter, now, who so alien and foreign, roaring the fight that plagues the nightmares of children across Panem. Her father lives in the Capitol, dinning with the rich and imfamous--her plan is to join him after her victory tour, reconcile him with her mother, and they will live, reuinted, together, in the greatest place on earth.
Cato complicates things as he always does, with his easy smile and obsessive tendancies, dealing with his friends as he dealt with his enemies--with brutal force. He is magnificent in battle, like a raging God.
She tells him things like I love you or I want you and the great warrior becomes nothing more than putty to be manipulated. If she is reaped, he will volunteer. Clove will have his protection, the danger that he exudes, watching her back--she finds herself interested in seeing his face when she kills him. She lies awake at night wondering whether betrayal would make him angry, or simply defeated.
It was the one thing her mother taught her--you must always be ready, my dear. Prepare for those games long before they say your name.
(she eschews the odd, hollow sensation that fills her at the thought of killing cato, her partner in crime. feelings are weakness, weakness means failure, failure means death.)
They read her name, and she bites back a smile.
Clove shows the Gamemakers her fast fingers. She is at home with her knife, which she is so used it feels but naught but an extention. She remembers how Tridents used to be terribly fashionable, and wonders whether knives will follow suit. She smiles at the right people, backs down it is necessary, and watches.
Most of her competitors are pushovers--Glimmer may be beautiful, but she lacks the killer instict that some of the others have, Marvel is all brawn and no brain, the girl with the fox-face is fast but Clove is faster.
She watches District 12 get the ten that she did not deserve, the recognition that is rightfully hers, and bites back a grimace.
Clove decides to kill her, slit her throat from ear to ear and watch The Girl on Fire's lifeblood paint her hands a bloody red.
For her interview, she wears a beautiful dress of black and white, with a golden centre piece. Her stylist calls her a amazon--Clove doesn't know what he means, but she doesn't care. It sounds dangerous, just like her.
She makes the audience love her--she tells jokes, smiles in way that only just exposes her pointed teeth, tells them of life in District 2, her hopes of winning. She lets her aims slip through, just once, when she replies to Flickerman's usual why should you win question, one that could tell you more about a tribute than what they were or how well they can throw a spear. She simply replies: "I am the blood of victors, Caesar, and they will prise the crown of the Hunger Games from my cooling corpse."
The crowd is silent for a beat, and then they are wild.
(as her corpse cools, cato screams her name. this was not his fight, but he decides to win it for her anyway.)