Chapter 13 Summary

Katniss has just realized that she will be returning to the arena. She breaks down and immediately attempts to flee District 12, only to find that the fence is still electrified. Unable to escape to the woods, she turns around and tries to hide in an abandoned building. Katniss finds some plastic sheeting and wraps herself up in it. Slowly, she begins to think again. Although the ceremony implied that the Quarter Quell has been planned for more than seventy years, Katniss suspects President Snow of having planned this over the past year. It is too convenient that Katniss, whose mockingjay has become symbolic of the rebellion against the Capitol, is being sent back into the arena.

Katniss returns to the Victor’s Village and finds Haymitch, who is “drunk as a skunk.” Haymitch shares that Peeta has already been to see him and has made a deal with Haymitch that he will return to the arena to protect Katniss. Katniss stays to drink with Haymitch. She makes her own deal: that they work together to keep Peeta alive. Haymitch agrees, though it will mean helping Katniss and Peeta kill his friends—the victors from other districts. That night, Katniss returns home drunk, and the next morning she wakes up hung over. Her mother offers her a cup of broth, and Katniss takes a second cup to Haymitch.

Haymitch and Katniss sit quietly, hung over, until Peeta arrives with a box of empty bottles. He explains that he has emptied every one of the liquor bottles and has made an arrangement with Greasy Sae that will prevent them from getting more liquor. Haymitch is outraged, as is Katniss, but Peeta stands firm. He explains that there is no room for drunkenness this time. Furthermore, he means for the three of them to train for the Quarter Quell as if they are Careers. Reluctantly, Haymitch and Katniss agree, if only because it means they will be able to maintain their agreement to keep Peeta alive.

The training is useful for Katniss and Peeta. Haymitch is strong, but years of alcoholism have left him unable to hit a house with a throwing knife. Gale helps out by teaching Katniss and Peeta everything he knows about setting snares. Although Gale is jealous of Peeta for his official engagement to Katniss, he admits that Peeta is difficult to hate. The three victors watch video footage of previous Games, and Katniss realizes that some of their competitors may be quite elderly.

Finally, the Reaping is at hand. Katniss is the only female victor from District 12, so she is picked immediately. When Haymitch’s name is drawn, Peeta volunteers to take his place. Unlike most Reapings, Katniss and Peeta are ushered away to the train without having the opportunity to say good-bye to their families. Haymitch and Effie Trinket arrive soon after. Katniss is again headed for the Capitol.