Mark Reads ‘Catching Fire’: Chapter 22

In the twenty-second chapter of Catching Fire, we find out where some of the other tributes have been, and Katniss realizes what this specific arena is. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Catching Fire.

Peeta drops the sheath and buries his knife into the monkey’s back, stabbing it again and again until it releases its jaw. He kicks the mutt away, bracing for more. I have his arrows now, a loaded bow, and Finnick at my back, breathing hard but not actively engaged.

“Come on, then! Come on!” shouts Peeta, panting with rage. But something has happened to the monkeys. They are withdrawing, backing up trees, fading into the jungle, as if some unheard voice calls them away. A Gamemaker’s voice, telling them this is enough.

Whoa, wait a minute, has this ever happened before? Just when I thought there was some sort of pattern to this all, this happens. Does this mean that the Gamemakers are controlling how these dangers are rolled out in a much more active way? I mean, the fog stopped at the edge of the beach and now the mutts are being called off before they can kill Peeta. Maybe the Gamemakers are purposely extending the Games specifically to torture Katniss and Peeta. Like…keeping them alive the whole time only to kill them off at the end.

The morphling from District 6 surely won’t last but a few minutes, though; she’s certainly not going to make it to the end.

She lies on the sand, gasping like a fish out of water. Sagging skin, sickly green, her ribs as prominent as a child’s dead of starvation. Surely she could afford food, but turned to the morphling just as Haymitch turned to drink, I guess. Everything about her speaks of waste—her body, her life, the vacant look in her eyes. I hold one of her twitching hands, unclear whether it moves from the poison that affected our nerves, the shock of the attack, or the withdrawal of the drug that was her sustenance. There is nothing we can do. Nothing but stay with her while she dies.

For me, this seriously might be so much worse than Rue’s death. At least Rue had moments of innocence and at least she had a day or two to feel safe and loved with Katniss. This unnamed tribute, chosen years ago to participate in a heinous act of oppression, has lived a life of terror, tragedy, and pain. And now, at the height of this awful hand that life has given, she just saved a complete stranger.

COLLINS, YOU PULL AT MY HEARTSTRINGS. And then you crush them.

The scene after this is SO STRANGE and kind of endearing? Peeta knows she is the morphling who spent most of her time in the Training Center fingerpainting, so he talks to her about all he truly knows: paining.

The morphling seems mesmerized by Peeta’s words. Entranced. She lifts up a trembling hand and paints what I think might be a flower on Peeta’s cheek.

“Thank you,” he whispers. “That looks beautiful.”

Just to provide some context, she paints that flower WITH THE BLOOD SEEPING OUT OF HER OWN CHEST WOUND. Good lordy.

For a moment, the morphling’s face lights up in a grin and she makes a small squeaking sound. Then her blooddappled hand falls back onto her chest, she gives one last huff of air, and the cannon fires. The grip on my hand releases.

Fucked up. So fucked up. Though…why didn’t the cannon sound this instantly for Peeta when he hit the force field? Finnick had time to make out with him…er….give him CPR while he was dead and no cannon sounded.

Weird.

Peeta sets her body into the water and they watch her float away for a bit before the Hovercraft comes to take her. It’s a short moment, but another powerful image that has to anger the Gamemakers. Perhaps their rounds of terror are their reactions to Katpee making real allies and defying the Captiol’s wish for them to turn into murdering machines. But isn’t allowing them these very human moments also risking rebellion in the other districts? Though, it’s entirely possible that they’re editing footage out so that the precarious control they hold doesn’t slip away.

Oh, would you like to get that tightness in the back of your throat? Would you? Of course you would.

It’s still night, though dawn can’t be too many hours away. Unless the Gamemakers want it to be. “Why don’t you two get some rest?” I say. “I’ll watch for a while.”

“No, Katniss, I’d rather,” says Funnick. I look in his eyes, at his face, and realize he’s barely holding back tears. Mags. The least I can do is give him the privacy to mourn her.

Jesus, I am gutted. This is so worse for me than Rue. I have grown to respect Finnick in a strange way and the fact that he isn’t hiding this from Katniss makes me think that there’s a chance he actually isn’t plotting to be friendly with her and then murder both her and Peeta. I’m not positive about that, but I’m starting to warm up to the idea.

The next morning, the itching due to their healing has gotten so bad that Katniss, while she slept, actually drew blood while scratching. Irritated, Katniss actually says:

“Hey, Haymitch, if you’re not too drunk, we could use a little something for our skin.”

AND BAM. A silver parachute descends, containing a tube of some sort of ointment that alleviates their itching. It’s also stains their skin a gray-green color, and that’s when Finnick has an idea.

“I’m going to wake Peeta,” I say.

“No, wait,” says Finnick. “Let’s do it together. Put our faces right in front of his.”

BLESS YOUR HEART.

Well, there’s so little opportunity for fun left in my life, I agree. We position ourselves on either side of Peeta, lean over until our faces are inches from his nose, and give him a shake. “Peeta. Peeta, wake up,” I say in a soft, singsong voice.

His eyelids flutter open and then he jumps live we’ve stabbed him. “Aa!”

Finnick and I fall back in the sand, laughing our heads off. Every time we try to stop, we look at Peeta’s attempt to maintain a disdainful expression and it sets us off again. By the time we pull ourselves together, I’m thinking that maybe Finnick Odair is all right. At least not as vain or self-important as I’d thought. Not so bad at all, really.

Man, every time there’s a happy moment like this, I worry that Collins is going to demolish our joy with epic sadness, but it doesn’t happen this time. Another parachute carrying bread shows up. Katniss initially believes it’s from Haymitch, as a sign that she should continue being friendly with Finnick, but it turns out it’s actually bread from District 4.

So our three tributes continue to stay on the beach and enjoy a meal of shellfish and bread, refusing to venture into the jungle, which Katniss surmises is full of traps. I’m beginning to think this was all methodically planned ahead of time and that while the Gamemakers manually control when things start and stop, they always intended for every one to end up at the beach. It looks like they wanted a quick Hunger Games after all.

Then, in the distance, comes screaming. Across from us, a wedge of the jungle begins to vibrate. An enormous wave crests high on the hill, topping the trees and roaring down the slope. It hits the existing seawater with such force that, even though we’re as far as we can get from it, the surf bubbles up around our knees, setting our few possessions afloat. Among the three of us, we manage to collect everything before it’s carried off, except for our chemical-ridden jumpsuits, which are so eaten away no one cares if we lose them.

A cannon fires. We see the hovercraft appear over the area where the wave began and pluck a body from the trees. Twelve, I think.

Well, they’re halfway done. So one of the traps is a giant wave? Now I’m curious: what triggers the traps? Certain people from certain districts?

We rearrange our things back on the wet sand and are about to settle down when I see them. Three figures, about two spokes away, stumbling onto the beach. “There,” I say quietly, nodding in the newcomers’ direction. Peeta and Finnick follow my gaze. As if by previous agreement, we all fade back into the shadows of the jungle.

Oh, great. Careers maybe? How many of them are left? UGH THINGS WERE SO PEACEFUL.

I draw back an arrow, readying for an attack. But all that happens is that the one who was being dragged collapses on the beach. The drgger stamps the ground in frustration and, in an apparent fit of temper, turns and shoves the circling, deranged one over.

Finnick’s face lights up. “Johanna!” he calls, and runs for the red things.

WHAT!!!!! Oh man, had I forgot about our resident nudist? But who the hell is she with???

The two of us tromp down the beach to where Finnick and Johanna are just meeting up. As we move in closer, I see her companions, and confusion sets in. That’s Beetee on the ground on his back and Wiress who’s regained her feet to continue making loops.

OH MY GOD YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE THESE TWO! Oh man, it’s like a giant family reunion.

HOW ON EARTH DID JOHANNA GET STUCK WITH THEM. This is the best development of all developments possible.

When we reach them, Johanna’s gesturing toward the jungle and talking very fast to Finnick. “We thought it was rain, you know, because of the lightning, and we were all so thirsty. But when it started coming down, it turned out to be blood. Thick, hot blood. You couldn’t see, you couldn’t speak without getting a mouthful. We just staggered around, trying to get out of it. That’s when Blight hit the force field.”

This is some Carrie-level bullshit, guys. No, wait, this is a Slayer record come to life.

“Yeah, well, he wasn’t much, but he was from home,” she says. “And he left me alone with these two.” She nudges Beetee, who’se barely conscious, with her shoe. “He got a knife in the back at the Cornucopia. And her—“

We all look over at Wiress, who’s circling around, coated in dried blood, and murmuring, “Tick, tock. Tick, tock.”

Johanna will make a good ally (if she’s even up for it), and Wiress and Beetee seemed to have all but completely checked out. And yet, I am still excited that they are here. More adventures??? Oh man. Also, I never expected this many people would be together during the Games, so I’m excited to see if they’ll stick together.

Johanna narrows her brown eyes at me in hatred. “Lay off her?” she hisses. She steps forward before I can react and slaps me so hard I see stars. “Who do you think got them out of that bleeding jungle for you? You—“ Finnick tosses her writing body over his shoulder and carries her out into the water and repeatedly dunks her while she screams a lot of really insulting things at me. But I don’t shoot. Because she’s with Finnick and because of what she said, about getting them for me.

Yeah, what the fuck just happened. She got them for her????? Is this something arranged by Haymitch? I mean….WHAT????

They don’t really discuss it much at all because Peeta and Katniss begin to work on cleaning off Beetee, who is covered in dried blood. The wound on his back isn’t as bad as they thought it would be, but he apparently has lost quite a bit of blood since the Games started. Unsure initially how she can help him, Katniss remembers the moss that Mags had used earlier and sets it on his back in the hopes that it at least keeps the infection out.

While Katniss begins work on Wiress, who only seems to be able to say, “Tick, tock,” over and over again, Johanna and Finnick finally join them to talk. When Johanna asks about Mags, we learn a pretty awful fact about who she was.

“She was Finnick’s mentor, you know,” Johanna says accusingly.

“No, I didn’t,” I say.

“She was half his family,” she says a few moments later, but there’s less venom behind it.

Oh god. That is even more depressing than I anticipated. Poor Mags. 🙁

“So what are you doing with Nuts and Volts?” I ask.

“I told you—I got them for you. Haymitch said if we were to be allies I had to bring them to you,” says Johanna. “That’s what you told him, right?”

Wow, we got that answer quickly. So this is Haymitch’s doing. So….do Wiress and Beetee have something for Katniss that she doesn’t know about? They’re the ones who let her in on the chink in the armor of the force field. Perhaps they know something more about the design of arenas.

While Johanna takes the time to get some sleep, Katniss decides to be lookout and comfort Wiress, who is slipping in and out of consciousness, always muttering, “Tick, tock.”

The sun rises in the sky until it’s directly over us. It must be noon, I think absently. Not that it matters. Across the water, off to the right, I see the enormous flash as the lightning bolt hits the tree and the electrical storm begins again. Right in the same area it did last night. Someone must have moved into its range, triggered the attack. I sit for a while watching the lightning, keeping Wiress calm, lulled into a sort of peacefulness of the water. I think of last night, how the lightning began just after the bell tolled. Twelve bongs.

“Tick, tock,” Wiress says, surfacing to consciousness for a moment and then going back under.

WAIT. WAIT A GOSH DARN MINUTE.

Twelve bongs last night Like it was midnight. Then lightning. The sun overhead now. Like it’s noon. And lightning.

MY HEAD. IT IS EXPLODING.

Slowly I rise up and survey the arena. The lightning there. In the next pie wedge over came the blood rain, where Johanna, Wiress, and Beetee were caught. We would have been in the third section, right next to that, when the fog appeared. And as soon as it sucked away, the monkeys began to gather in the fourth. Tick, tock. My head snaps to the other side. A couple of hours ago, at around ten, that wave came out of the second section to the left of where the lightning strikes now. At noon. At midnight. At noon.

I CAN’T EVEN BELIEVE THIS. HOW DID I NOT SEE THIS.

“Oh,” I say under my breath. “Tick, tock.” My eyes sweep around the full circle of the arena and I know she’s right. “Tick, tock. This is a clock.”

Suzanne Collins, you are a genius.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since ’09.

This entry was posted in Catching Fire, The Hunger Games and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

185 Responses to Mark Reads ‘Catching Fire’: Chapter 22

  1. bell_erin_a says:

    AHAHAHAHAHAHA Katniss and Finnick scaring Peeta is my favorite scene in this book. It's so funny and lighthearted AND WE DON'T GET MUCH OF THAT HERE, DO WE. Also, hey look guys, it's time for FINGERPAINTING WITH BLOOD! Aren't these Games great??

    Um, yeah, the clock. Appropriate reaction (haha, yours is so great!) is appropriate. I wanted to hit myself over the head with the book because how could I not have seen it? The shape of the arena, the fog and monkeys disappearing, the tolling. It's so goddamn obvious, it's genius.

    Though…why didn’t the cannon sound this instantly for Peeta when he hit the force field? Finnick had time to make out with him…er….give him CPR while he was dead and no cannon sounded.
    I think we came to the conclusion that Peeta didn't have a cannon go off because the bloodbath at the Cornucopia was still happening. However, that does not explain what would have happened if it had been just a few hours later, and I'm not going to repeat my tl;dr paragraph of questions, so suffice it to say, we don't know. Maybe if CPR can bring them back, then they're not dead until it's apparent no one knows CPR or can't save them.

    Mags. I'm still so sad for you. 🙁 But Beetee and Wiress and Johanna! It's a party over here!

    • andreah1234 says:

      It's so funny and lighthearted AND WE DON'T GET MUCH OF THAT HERE, DO WE

      NO WE DON'T, WE ONLY GET THE BLOOD AND THE DEATHS AND THE CRUSHING OF OUR HEARTS AND SOULS.

      Brb, crying with joy because we finally see some much needed happiness here.

    • Shanella says:

      I think I agree with the CPR thing, if they are still somewhat alive, then they are not really dead right?

    • amandajane5 says:

      CPR will not resuscitate someone who is actually dead – what it does is keep the blood flowing so that they can be shocked back to life, so if he woke back up after CPR he was never actually dead. Though this is often something they get wrong on TV.

      • Clare says:

        He was only "Mostly Dead". There is a big difference between "Mostly Dead" and All Dead".

        I think Princess Bride got it right?

    • The shape of the arena, the fog and monkeys disappearing, the tolling. It's so goddamn obvious, it's genius.
      I know, right? I think the fact that there were twelve regions and twelve districts clouds the issue because your mind can't get away from that connection. It's such a crazy fucked-up arena. I love it.

    • notemily says:

      I thought they just waited until after the bloodbath was over to get the bodies, not to sound the cannons themselves? I don't know. Still doesn't make sense to me. In fact, wouldn't it have been even MORE ominous if the cannon HAD fired and Katniss was absolutely sure he was dead? But maybe then they wouldn't have tried to save him, I dunno.

      It seems weird to me that the way Collins wrote it, the cannon fires EXACTLY when the morphling girl dies. Like, how do you even do that. I feel like whatever's controlling the cannon should wait around to make sure tributes are actually for reals dead, and not that they've just stopped breathing for a second or whatever.

      • kelseyintherain says:

        Well, you have to remember that before going into the arena, they place a tracker in the Tribute's arm so they know where they are at all times. This tracker also probably monitors their vital signs so the gamemakers will know if someone is really dead.

  2. Phoebe says:

    GINNY!!! love that gif. I think the idea of the clock is actually the scariest thing ever. there's no escaping. also, I LOVE WIRESS AND BEETEE FOREVER!!!! <3

    • notemily says:

      The clock was weird to me because it seemed like you COULD escape: just hide in the jungle and make sure you're AWAY from where the evil is happening. You could move to different sections of the jungle at different times to keep away from the clock stuff. Then again, if someone did that, the Capitol would probably send some other evil random thing to force them into a different section of jungle.

  3. LadyLately says:

    I just thought you should know,Mark, that I got the STUPIDEST expression of glee on my face when I realized that was THAT CHAPTER. Like, I'm biting my bottom lip so hard it's practically touching my uvula and my teeth are sticking out and there is hand-flapping.

    Also I just had 20 oz of coffee and a brownie, so it might not just be you.

  4. DTDRC says:

    I thought the clock was such a cool concept, and I was completely surprised because I had come up with my own theory:

    The gamemakers developed 12 different weapons to kill the victors (in case they didn't all kill each other). The 12 bongs were because no one had yet died from any of them. Each weapon could only be used until it killed someone. The fog killed Mags, so it stopped. The monkeys killed the morphling, then left. The giant wave killed someone, so there was only one. Also, the electric charged forcefield is one of the weapons. and should have killed Peeta, but since Finnick brought him back to life, the forcefield remained electrified until Blight died. (To be clear, the forcefield still keeps people in the arena, but will not kill them.) I thought this would lead to a) Johanna wanting revenge on Finnick for bringing Peeta back to life (and thus, killing Blight) and b) not allowing Katniss to use the forcefield to cook meat anymore. See, you're not the only one with bad predictions, Mark 🙂

    Also, Peeta doesn't have a cannon because it was the first day, where the cannon doesn't sound until after the cornucopia fighting is over because it would be too confusing to track the deaths in the beginning.

    • bell_erin_a says:

      Wow, that's a very awesome theory made all the more interesting because it's a) unpredictable and b) causes problems for everyone else in the arena (i.e. the loss of cooking power with the force field).

      I'm sometimes disappointed that I never stopped and made predictions, but then again I was reading way too fast to actually digest what was going on, so I guess the good thing is that I got the OMG OMG WHAT'S HAPPENING I AM HAVING A HEART ATTACK OVER HERE out of the way relatively quickly. :p

    • Phoebe says:

      thats actually really close. i was just thinking "omigod what is this?!?!"

    • Shanella says:

      That's an excellent theory! I have no idea what I was thinking other than, "huh? this is confusing … what?" *ominous feeling*

    • knut_knut says:

      That's a fantastic theory!

  5. iva222 says:

    It appears that Wiress is not that crazy after all.

  6. Kart says:

    Mark, is it a spoiler if we refer to things that have happened previously (in this same book…) that you have evidently forgotten? 🙂

  7. lily says:

    Love the gifs, mark. (:

    And I love how Collins connected Mags to Finnick in this chapter. I thought she was just a BAMF that took the other girl's place and that she was fond of Finnick, but she was his MENTOR???
    asfkjd;gdkfj
    Yeah, now I understand why Finnick was sad. 🙁
    I feel for him, you know?
    [img ]http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_L-6xp13j0yc/TSn4LZedDiI/AAAAAAAACBI/5EUgj3xDjn0/S1600-R/collage9c.jpg[/img]

    AND YAY JOHANNA YOU JUST BROUGHT JOY TO MY LIFE WOOOOO~~~ 8D

    • lily says:

      oh wow that image totally messed up. xD ah well.

    • Kripa says:

      Honestly, Mags' being Finnick's mentor isn't surprising in the least to me – of course old victors mentor newer tributes. She'd be to Finnick (and that other girl, also once a tribute) what Haymitch is to KatPee.

      • stellaaaaakris says:

        Yeah, but we're told District 4, along with Districts 1 and 2, have the most number of Victors to choose from when the reaping for the Quell came. Which means there were probably lots of potential mentors for Finnick and the other girl. I think that each Tribute still only gets one Mentor even if a whole bunch are available. So it is kind of a surprise that Mags was Finnick's mentor, especially considering she was 70 at the time, you'd think she would have retired or something by then.

        But for District 12, Haymitch was the only one alive and had to pull double duty for Katpee.

  8. Ned says:

    MY MIND JUST BROKE.

  9. Mary says:

    I love Wiress and Beetee til the END OF TIME!! <3

  10. stellaaaaakris says:

    This chapter almost has the same feel as the cave chapters in THG. I enjoyed those chapters and it was a nice break from all the stress and sadness. This chapter is so much lighter than pretty much all other parts of this book (odd considering another 2 characters have died and 3 others have appeared covered in blood), but it's still full of important information and developments. I love Finnick and Katniss waking up Peeta by leaning over him. He reacted much more calmly than I would though. My brother did this to me once and I punched him in the face. Oops?

    Peeta didn't get a cannon because when his heart stopped the bloodbath at the Cornucopia was still going on and they don't do the cannons until everyone has cleared away. Although I think it'd be really interesting if he hit the force field after the bloodbath, the Gamemakers let the cannon off, but then Finnick revived him and they had to get on the microphone and explain to the Tributes to ignore that last cannon, the guy was back from the dead.

    Only kind of related to the topic at hand, but if I suddenly developed the talent and desire to act, I would totally audition for Johanna. She's so feisty.So much spunk and BAMF rolled into such a tiny package. She's manipulative and has a temper and sounds like SO MUCH FUN. Also, I'd audition just so I could talk to people involved in the movies and tell them about this site and advise them to look into some our awesome suggestions. One of my favorites is Katniss, the girl on fire, and Peeta, the boy with the bread, looking at each other and saying, "We're toast."

    • EldaTaluta says:

      I love Finnick and Katniss waking up Peeta by leaning over him. He reacted much more calmly than I would though. My brother did this to me once and I punched him in the face. Oops?

      My sister tried the same thing, and I ended up kicking her in the face. Heh. Really, Katniss and Finnick are lucky Peeta didn't draw his knife on them or something.

    • Saber says:

      "We're toast"
      Someone who can draw, PLEASE make this into a comic

    • notemily says:

      "My brother did this to me once and I punched him in the face. Oops?"

      This made me laugh. I did think it was kind of risky of them to be SCARING PEETA in a place where SCARY THINGS KILL YOU. Like, he could have pulled out his knife or something and stabbed them before he realized what was going on. But, you know, lulz.

  11. accio doublestuff says:

    totally awesome ginny gif is totally awesome.

  12. Hurray, finally MOAR Johanna! 😀

    Best moment ever has GOT to be Finnick and Katniss scaring Peeta. This made my heart happy. (In one typo you called him "Funnick". I think this name is perfect for him, and it should stay that way forever, amirite?)

    I'm so excited that Johanna is here, because she's such a wild card in the group.

  13. andreah1234 says:

    OMG IT'S A CLOCK. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS. Wait a minute, that's not good is it?!!?!?!? Oh SH-

    Man, this chapter was a mind fuck. I mean how clever Wiress was to be to realize this (and assuming, as I am, that she figured it out as soon as she got into the arena), and I'm thinking Kat made a really good choice in choosing her (And Beetee) as her and Peeta's allies. The Peeta/ Morphling thing broke my heart and crushed my soul. 🙁

    FINNICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙁 🙁 POOR THING BREAKS MY HEART I WANT TO HUG HIM REALLY BAD RIGHT NOW AND IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH HIM BEEN REALLY HOT AND REALLY NAKED, His almost family is dead, and he might be also, that's very tragic. VERY TRAGIC I SAY. And I still hold onto the idea he's good and he wants to help KatPee. And Noone will make me change my mind *denial*. And the medicine thing with Peeta harmed my heart forever. PLEASE NEVER CHANGE FINNICK.

    Johanna is awesome. I don't know why I like her so much but I do. She's a bitch and I love it <3. Haymitch even when you're not there you are BADASS AS HELL. TEAM HAYMITCH!.

    • Gabbie says:

      Your last paragraph made me grin like an idiot and my dad asked what was wrong with me. Thanks. 😉

  14. Liz says:

    “Oh,” I say under my breath. “Tick, tock.” My eyes sweep around the full circle of the arena and I know she’s right. “Tick, tock. This is a clock.”

    ABSOLUTE FAVORITE.
    I GET CHILLS WHENEVER I READ THAT LINE.

  15. MadarFoxfire says:

    It'd be pretty awesome to hear more about other Games if this kind of creativity crops up regularly.

    TICK TOCK MOTHERFUCKERS, Wiress knows her stuff. I am saddened that she and Mags never got the chance to be Team Crazyawesome Ol' Bats.

  16. mugglemomof2 says:

    Jesus, I am gutted. This is so worse for me than Rue. I have grown to respect Finnick in a strange way and the fact that he isn’t hiding this from Katniss makes me think that there’s a chance he actually isn’t plotting to be friendly with her and then murder both her and Peeta. I’m not positive about that, but I’m starting to warm up to the idea.
    Every scene with Finnick makes me fall in love him more. These scenes kill me though- it makes him more and more human (and makes me more and more scared that the bad is coming)

    OH MY GOD YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE THESE TWO! Oh man, it’s like a giant family reunion.
    YES!!! I remember getting so excited. Nuts and Volts!

    Yeah, what the fuck just happened. She got them for her????? Is this something arranged by Haymitch? I mean….WHAT????
    When I first read this I was baffled and excited by the possibilities

    I CAN’T EVEN BELIEVE THIS. HOW DID I NOT SEE THIS.
    Man. i really thought you would get this sooner. I got (but in all honesty not too much sooner than you). Genius? Yes? Yes? What an arena they created!

  17. Araniapriime says:

    Clock, OMGs. I have this horrible vision of Katpee & Co. running around and around the clock, one step ahead of the traps all the time; it's like they're reduced into the minute hands of the clock or hamsters in a wheel. Dehumanized, and off somewhere in the City the viewers are laughing and laughing as the tributes are herded around and around…

    wow. I gotta lay off the burritos and ice cream before bed.

  18. Doodle says:

    I just want to point out how on the cover the design the mockingjay is in front of has the twelve spokes! IT WAS THERE THE WHOLE TIME!

  19. Shanella says:

    LOVE this chapter. I am not afraid to admit that I was completely blindsided. COMPLETELY blindsided. I did not even think that the arena was a clock until the moment Katniss starts putting it together.

    *slow clap*

  20. toneDef77 says:

    “Tick, tock. This is a clock.” – my absolute favorite line of this book. I seriously lost my shit at this point, Collins is just so brilliant in writing this, and that Wiress had it figured out is perfect. Yes, Nuts and Volts are more useful than anyone might initially believe! Love this!!!

    • FlameRaven says:

      It's a good line, but I think my favorite line is yet to come. 😀

      • Matthew says:

        Oh yes. Oh yes it is. I can only assume we are thinking of the same line.

        • FlameRaven says:

          Probably. Difficult to say when we're being so vague. XD

          There is one line that made me go 'FUCK YEAH!" and then another that made me go 'OH SNAP WTF!' Both are good. But I think the first one is my favorite.

          • mag11 says:

            I have noooo idea what you're talking about, and it's making me very sad. And I've READ this book! Hmmm, maybe we could work out some sort of code… 😉 just kidding. Siriusly, though, I'm totally wracking my brains desperately at this point.

  21. 1foxi says:

    Finnick <3

  22. embers says:

    See? Even half out of her mind Wiress has figured out more about the arena than anyone else! lol
    I love these characters, Collins does more to create really layered interesting characters (who I fall totally in love with) than most writers even try to do!

  23. kajacana says:

    The clock concept is SO COOL. I mean… terrifying and effed up and horrible in every conceivable way, but COOL. I loved this reveal. I think I screamed when I read it, out of sheer delight at the calculated absurdity. Fanbloodytastic.

  24. Hannah says:

    What is the doodad Beetee was carrying? Chekov's gun anyone?
    (DON'T ANSWER ME)

  25. Gillyweed says:

    "Though…why didn’t the cannon sound this instantly for Peeta when he hit the force field?"
    Because Mark, Peeta was only MOSTLY dead. There's a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive, and can be healed with magick lips of Finnick 🙂

  26. Jaria says:

    Funnick is almost as good a typo as drinking win.

  27. kaybee42 says:

    I genuinely think my theory is basically confirmed now so I am going to be holding back from commenting about the HUGE PRACTICALLY CONFIRMATION of my theory.
    But THE CLOCK THING? It's a clock? thats mental! Is that what that Head gamemaker was trying to say to her with showing her the watch when they were dancing? AND FUCK! What was it he said? It was something weird… "the meeting starts at midnight"? I thought he was trying to tell her that he was having a meeting with some rebels or something… but was he telling her that the arena is a clock?

    • FlameRaven says:

      He said "It starts at midnight" after he showed her the mockingjay on the clock face. And yeah, I think that was foreshadowing. Actually subtle foreshadowing: +100 points to Ms. Collins. 😀

      Katniss being Katniss of course, she was completely oblivious to everything.

      • Booksinbulk says:

        I think this all might count as spoilery…we aren’t supposed to talk about things (even if they’ve happened) that mark has forgotten or isn’t realizing on his own. At least that’s what I think the rule is….any one else?

    • BradSmith5 says:

      WHAT!? The clues were there, and NONE of us caught them!? Collins is the bluntest writer in the world!! How did she suddenly turn into a freakin' master of subtlety and misdirection!? Kaybee, what is going on!? 😮

  28. tethysdust says:

    Haymitch's Johanna alliance sort of made me reconsider the Finnick alliance. I wonder if Haymitch told Finnick that Katniss would only be his ally if Mags was also included. That could explain how nice he was from the very beginning. Maybe he was just floored that one of the most powerful victors was insisting on helping to protect his 80 year old mentor. That kind of puts his rescue of Peeta in another light, because he would already feel grateful (if a little confused) to Katniss for her inclusion of Mags.

    Other random thoughts: I really want there to be a rebellion now, because I don't know if I can go on in this series if we lose Finnick or Johanna ;_;. I did not see the clock thing coming, that was a neat twist! I can see it's going to force everyone to the beach, too. I actually reacted more emotionally to the morphling's death than to Rue's as well. That was incredibly sad, and I think not even knowing her name actually heightened the poignancy of the scene.

    • shortstack930 says:

      I think Finnick would've had Mags as an ally either way because like Johanna said, she was one half of his family. Although it probably helped if he knew Katniss wanted her as an ally too.

      • tethysdust says:

        Oh yeah, I definitely agree. I was just saying, it accounts for how nice he was being to KatPee. It could be in response to what he saw as their kindness to Mags before the game even started.

    • kaybee42 says:

      I know what you mean about wanting a rebellion to start right now! I don't want Finnick to die but surely Katniss HAS to survive? So I CAN ONLY GET MY WAY IF THEY REBEL AND DESTROY THE CAPITOL RIGHT NOW.
      Ooooh. Maybe there is a rebellion going on right now, and all the trap things are automated so the games will just go on and on broadcasting to nobody cause there has been a nuclear war on the outside but they were protected by the dome fordcefield thing. THEN NO ONE HAS TO DIE!

  29. adev0tchka says:

    I almost died of shame when I read this chapter. Oh man, I totes should have seen the clock arena before!
    <img src="http://i643.photobucket.com/albums/uu156/Lainna_bucket/gifs/facepalm.gif"&gt;

    Collins probably listens to a lot of Slayer.

  30. christwriter says:

    I found it hilarious that not only are you reading my absolute favorite series of novels when I finally track it all back down, AND not only are you on my favorite book in the series, but you're on the section of my "Listen at work" audio book that I just finished last night.

    I "read" all three novels at my job (debilitating grocery store-bakery work. Overnight. Frying frickin' DOUGHNUTS) and I remember standing there with a fryer full of greasy dough and the dull overhead lights in the hood being all weird, and it's three am and I haven't had my lunch break caffiene boost yet because I haven't had my freaking LUNCH yet and I'm screaming IT'S A CLOCK! IT'S A FREAKING CLOCK! OUT LOUD at the doughnuts. And I am so glad the morning shift doesn't show up until four, because they would have had me committed. And getting to enjoy somebody else's reading of the books is almost as good as being able to read them again without knowing what happens next. Which someone should seriously invent amnesia pills for. Just for Hunger Games.

  31. Isa says:

    This new arena, as well as the other mentions we've had of previous games, just gives me this mental image of the Gamemakers designing video games in their spare time. I imagine they'd be good at it… 😛

  32. Stephalopolis says:

    I love this chapter!!!! It's a clock. GENIUS!!! I mean, evil Genius… but GENIUS! Yay for Beetee and Wiress!! Like Katniss, I loved them too in training so I'm happy we get to see more of them 🙂

  33. WAIT. WAIT A GOSH DARN MINUTE.
    DO YOU SEE WHAT SHE DID THERE?

    MY HEAD. IT IS EXPLODING.
    YET ANOTHER HEAD EXPLOSION WE HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR.

    I CAN’T EVEN BELIEVE THIS. HOW DID I NOT SEE THIS.
    BECAUSE IT'S TOTALLY BRILLIANT AND TOTALLY OBVIOUS AT THE SAME TIME. AND HAVING TWELVE REGIONS FOR TWELVE DISTRICTS CLOUDS THE ISSUE.

    Suzanne Collins, you are a genius.
    Let's agree to agree on this one.

  34. pennylane27 says:

    Mark, I've so been waiting for you to reach this chapter! I think it's one of my favourites, a lot happens, and we finally get a really funny moment. It's amazing how that scene allows you to relax a little bit, and then BAM, Johanna and D3 covered in blood!

    Ok, that was my attempt at writing something coherent, because my head was exploding with the clock arena. I mean, I'm pretty slow, but this caught me totally off guard.

    Mark, finish the book, I don't know how you can keep doing this.

  35. Puel says:

    Finnick and Katniss waking Peeta up made me laugh harder than pretty much anything else in the book up to that point. Oh, Finnick, never stop being slightly ridiculous. In a good way. (And Finnick dunking Johanna in the water never fails to amuse, either.) I kind of love the giant victor group forming now, even though lord knows how long it'll take before Katniss and Johanna try to kill each other.

    Finnick's restrained grief at Mags's death really breaks my heart, though. It's like he can't even mourn her properly because of the whole fucked-up structure of the Games and how you have to behave in the arena if you want to survive. So awful.

    I felt like such a derp for missing the clock the first time around. Well-played, Collins. Well-played.

    Also:

    <img src="http://fc02.deviantart.net/fs71/f/2010/241/3/0/30f5bb6ceadefe348783c09672b885f4-d2xj0m5.jpg"&gt;

  36. ShiiShii says:

    I loved figuring out that the arena was a giant clock. Just brilliant!! And I'm so glad that we eran into Wiress and Beetee, they were my personal favorites through the training.

  37. hallowsnothorcruxes says:

    The clock revelation was amazing. i would have never guessed that. But what the hell is going on with all the tributes and what is Haymitch's masterplan? is he looking to start an uprising in the arena itself by asking all the tributes to band together? Does he expect all the tributes to not kill each other because he asked nicely. And even if the remaining tributes decide to not participate in Murderfest 2058, i don't think the gamemakers will take that. So how does Haymitch expect Katniss and Peeta to survive?

    Also, i can't believe i'm saying this but i felt so bad for Finnick.

    <img src="http://i51.tinypic.com/9huk1w.jpg&quot; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    <img src="http://i54.tinypic.com/2m622z5.jpg&quot; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

  38. theresa1128429 says:

    Hooray for Wiress and Beetee!! I can't wait to see if they know any more about those forcefields! And the clock, the fucking clock. There were so many clues, yet it all just went over my head!

  39. PaulineParadise says:
  40. FlameRaven says:

    The clock thing is totally part of why I love Catching Fire so much. It's so obvious and at the same time it takes you totally by surprise. :DD Also Collins' skill at taking random characters and making you love them is at full strength here– I did not expect to like Mags, Finnick, or Johanna that much but I really grew pretty attached to them the more I read.

    Although I think it was about this point that I started shouting "KATNISS YOU ARE SUCH A MORON" at the book a lot. Haymitch has obviously tried to set SOMETHING up, if all these tributes are protecting her and Peeta and wanting to be allies with her. Secret plan, Katniss. You can has it. Just pay attention for two seconds, srsly.

    They may have forced the tributes back in the arena, but they are playing a completely different game this time. It's gonna be so awesooome. 😀

  41. Beci says:

    This REVEAL made me spaz for such a long time i was like WHAT ROUGI(HDBLKNIHOURGNBFJEDIHUGHJLHUG I DON'T EVEN WHAT!

  42. Treasure Cat says:

    Fuck yeah, this right here is why Wiress is my favourite character and will be until the end of time <3 Weapons? No thank you, this chick has <i>all the brains. And go go Katniss for figuring it out too with Wiress' little hint. What you gonna do now Gamemakers? Huh? HUH? Team Katpee Joinnick Wirtee have figured out your clock, hells yeah.

  43. Ili says:

    Well, it seems I was the only one not impressed by the clock thing. I mean, don't get me wrong, it totally took me by surprise, I sooo did not see it coming… it's just that it doesn't make sense to me the Gamemakers would design an arena with a predictable pattern to the horrors within… it just doesn't fit….

    On a different note…. I am sol glad to see you are finally enjoying the book… I gotta be honest, during the first half of it I thought the pace at which you were reading it was ruining the whole experience for you. Nice yo have you back on board 😉

  44. Turq says:

    I've been wondering if you would figure it out before Katniss. I sure didn't! SC is a genious for making all of this, and coming up with Cinna and Finnick. I wonder how the Capitol reacts to things like Katniss and Finnick waking Peeta up. Do they like that more or just as much as bloodshed?

  45. MeasuringInLove says:

    I really adore the group dynamic in this book, its so different from the Hunger Games where it's a lot of Katpee making out all the time, and while I understand that appealed to a lot of kids my age, I got exasperated pretty quickly. Finnick, Johanna, Wiress, and Beetee are just really awesome in their own special way, and I love how they've gotten Katniss to reconsider her first impressions. Finnick in particular seems to be showing new, non-creepy sides of himself, what with pranking Peeta and throwing Johanna in the water. The clock…oh god. All I'm going to say is that Wiress is a genius for figuring it out.

  46. blessthechildren says:

    Oh Hunger Games, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways (in no particular order):
    1. Finnick Odair. I am in love with him and his humorous ways….and his sexy, sea green eyes.
    2. Mags – you were such a badass.
    3. Joanna, who about to slap a hoe…or stab one. Yea for mood swings!!!
    4. Wiress, bless your demented heart, you had it all figured out didn't you?
    5. The mindfuckery of the gamemakers- who puts people in a clock of doom? They do. The clock of doom…sounds like a bad Linkin Park song.
    6. Beetee – hope you feel better buddy. Bleedng to death sucks.
    7. Female morphling – you went down with your boots on, bless you for your help.
    8. The monkeys, showers of blood, and tidal waves – how will this movie NOT be rated R? Excite. 😀

  47. paulineparadise says:

    GUYS

    Screen of DEATHLY HALLOWS part 2:
    DON'T CLICK IF YOU DON'T WANT TO BE SPOILED http://29.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lf74grl1ed1qbzd

  48. vampira2468 says:

    Love how she made the arena a clock!!

  49. mr. mowgli says:

    I wonder what the people at home are seeing. while i think that the games are broadcast live, I am not sure if the capital would show all the support that is going on or if they would they just cut to someone else? Like the morphling dies immediately cut to the Brutus somehwere. Do they want the citizens seeing Katpee try to heal Finnick, Johanna dragging Beetee, Peeta putting the morphling in the water?

    It makes for compelling television but its sure to contribute to the uprising.

  50. Alanna says:

    I was really looking forward to Mark’s reaction to the ointment wake-up. 😉

    Oh, Finnick. I never expected to love you this much.

  51. ooohlivia says:

    WHY THIS IS MY FAVOURITE BOOK OF THE TRILOGY
    THAT IS THE ANSWER RIGHT THERE
    THE ARENA IS A CLOOOOCK

  52. Karen says:

    Stupid school making me later to the Catching Fire party. Anyway, when I first read this book and it was revealed that the arena was a clock, I flipped out. LIKE, IN RETROSPECT IT SEEMS REALLY OBVIOUS. BUT OMG. How brilliant is Collins?

    Also, I really adore the moment when Finnick and Katniss scare Peeta. Idk. It's just nice to remember that Katniss and Peeta are seventeen year old kids sometimes. It's nice to see them take a moment to be silly, especially Katniss who has a tendency to be serious to the point of being dour sometimes.

  53. clodia_risa says:

    My theory was completely wrong, and this is way cooler!

    My theory was that the fog would use up, say, 12 feet of space at the edge of the ring. That more and more fog would roll out, using up livable space over time until everyone was forced to be in the water in the middle. Assuming anyone was still alive.

  54. Silverilly says:

    Post-dated thoughts:
    "I came really close to crying when Peeta said the addict's flower looked beautiful. Collins can be a bit monotonous, so it's amazing when she gives us things that really cut deep. I also loved the prose when Katniss found out about the clock. It's short and choppy and full of REVELATION OMSness."

    Though…why didn’t the cannon sound this instantly for Peeta when he hit the force field? Finnick had time to make out with him…er….give him CPR while he was dead and no cannon sounded.
    I'm sure someone's already answered this by now, but Peeta's kinda-death happened during the initial bloodbath at the Cornucopia, and the cannon fires at that time were saved until after the fight.

    Also, that ffffffffffffffffuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu gif is amazing.

  55. HieronymusGrbrd says:

    Death List Update:

    District 1: Cashmere (?), Gloss (?)
    District 2: Enobaria (?), Brutus (?)
    District 3: Wiress (alive), Beetee(alive)
    District 4: Mags (dead), Finnick(alive)
    District 5: Woman (?), Drunk (dead)
    District 6: Morphling (dead), Morphling (dead)
    District 7: Johanna (alive), Blight (dead)
    District 8: Cecilia (dead), Woof (dead)
    District 9: Woman (dead), Man (dead)
    District 10: Woman (dead), Man (?)
    District 11: Seeder (dead), Chaff (?)
    District 12: Kattniss (alive), Peeta (alive)

    One of the (?) is dead, we heard the cannon at "Ten", but have to wait for the anthem. (We also learned only now that Blight was the tribute who died at "0ne" two chapters ago.
    Considering the trouble with all the (?) I understand why Mark is not doing this again.

  56. dumbgirlwithnoname says:

    That Bert gif scarred me.
    And, yes, when I found out the clock thing I was like: HOLY GOD THAT IS THE BEST THING EVER BUT IT'S NOT REALLY BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE DYING!!!
    Anyway, how's life?

  57. fizzybomb says:

    First time reading, I thought "tick tock" meant a countdown to something. Which would have also been awesome, if Wiress had managed to figure that out. 🙂

    • tethysdust says:

      Yeah, honestly, that's kind of what I figured the 12 tones were at midnight. I was imagining that they would do 11 the following night, then 10, counting down to some horrible catastrophe (arena EXPLODES!?!). I did not pick up on the clock at all for some reason until Katniss pointed it out. Katniss figured something out before I did *facepalm*.

  58. zuzu says:

    Collins pulls at your heartstrings you say? Or do you mean she plays a riff on your heartstrings 😉 ? Some people suggested watching Little White Lie in the AVPM comments and I agree. Peeta + Morphling breaks my heart.

    I love that Finnick was able to tell Johanna by her stomping her feet and pushing someone over. Seriously, he "lights up." Adorable. And I also love Johanna yelling at Katniss and Finnick is like whatevs I'm gonna clean you up while you have your little hissy fit. MOAR JOHANNA/FINNICK BEING TOTAL BFF'S PLZ. FOREVER UNTIL THE END OF TIME.

    • Saber says:

      He lost Mags, I can imagine seeing a friend made him perk up. And Johanna isn't the type to let someone wallow in grief, so she's just what he needs right now.

  59. warmouth says:

    Oh hai everyone. Been awhile. I whole heartedly approve of this book becoming a bitchin metal video

    <img src="http://i1081.photobucket.com/albums/j354/xwhipyohairrr/tumblr_kwetgfc3Vo1qzht63o1_400.gif"&gt;

    We can only hope that Finn starts playing a guitar solo with his teeth while the instrument is on fire
    Oh whats this, am I becoming Team Finnick. And dance party for Johanna!

    <img src="http://i1223.photobucket.com/albums/dd517/emayeareeyeaye/harrypottergif.gif"&gt;

    Ah what a nice get together, makes me feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside…
    <img src="http://i41.photobucket.com/albums/e258/darkwave242/firefly/mal.jpg"&gt;
    Yeah something like that.

    Oh and here was pretty much my reaction with the clock thing.

    <img src="http://i750.photobucket.com/albums/xx146/LiliacDeathFlower/cce6aa9e-c40c-4ae7-aebe-d7780d6fc009.gif"&gt;

  60. Yusra says:

    Heh. And I bet you think you're prepared now?
    But, the clock is AWESOME. And Wiress and Beetee make the geek in me so happy

    • theresa1128429 says:

      Yay for geeks! If I had to be oppressed in any of the districts, I would have to pick District 3 so I could play with all the electronics!

  61. corporatecake says:

    The morphiling's death always makes me tear up. I mean… You're right, Rue was awful, but this is worse, because who knows how old this woman was when she went into her Games, how many years she's just wasted away from drug addiction, with nowhere else to turn. And then she dies saving Peeta's life? Just… fdjdkas;fjafa

    Also, Wiress, Beetee, and Johanna. YES. Johanna is my favorite new character in Catching Fire, so this is hugely exciting to me.

    And I don't know if anyone has posted this fanart, but it's one of my favorites. Gale, Peeta, and Finnick.

    <img src="http://fc09.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2010/012/c/c/the_Men_of_Hunger_Games_by_burdge_bug.png"&gt;
    (C)

  62. RainaWeather says:

    Wiress. This woman literally says three words and your fucking brain explodes. "chink" "tick tock" BAM

    Johanna is still awesome. slappin bitches and everything. The mental image of Finnick repeatedly dunking Johanna in water while she curses Katniss is hilarious!

  63. Mauve_Avenger says:

    My reaction to Katniss and Finnick's prank seems to have been exactly the opposite of seemingly everyone else's. Seriously, what possibly could go wrong with painting yourself grey-green and scaring a sleeping/groggy person in an arena where you're trained to see everything and everyone as a life threat? They're just lucky Peeta isn't a particularly stabby kind of person.

    <img src="http://i1133.photobucket.com/albums/m593/the_mauve_avenger/Catching%20Fire%20Tables/CatchingFireChapter22.jpg"&gt;
    Plus one dead from the wave, whose identity we don't know yet.
    And since the arena works on a clock now, time can be accounted for without having to use the closing anthem/nightly death toll. So, assuming the Games start at noon (though I don't think we've got confirmation?), they've been in the arena for twenty-four hours.

    So the fact that the arena attacks run like a clock probably means that the only way to ensure safety is to run in a clockwise circle ahead of the attacks. Unless there's some sort of clock in the arena itself that controls it (probably unlikely), in which case they can possibly destroy it.

    • CINNAmon says:

      how fucked up is that Gloss and Cashmere are siblings??

    • Saber says:

      They start at 10, I believe. but I'm not 100%

      • Mauve_Avenger says:

        I think she says in this chapter that at somewhere near ten o' clock they've been in the arena for "about a day." I think I just assume it's noon because it's easier, even though it makes less sense given that Cinna arrived at dawn to prep Katniss both times.

  64. Kandy says:

    From True Blood.

  65. Meghan says:

    What time is it? It's death o'clock. duh duh duh

    Poor Finnick losing half of his family when Mags died. I wonder who the other half is.

    (But don't actually tell me)

  66. Simone says:

    Am I the only one who thought of that scene from Zombieland when Katniss and Finnick woke Peeta up? I was seriously terrified that Peeta was gonna freak out and stab one of them. So yeah, I didn't get to enjoy their playfulness until I realized Peeta wasn't grabbing for his knife.

    • theresa1128429 says:

      Well I'm sure they checked to see if he had a weapon before pulling the prank. Either that or stayed a good distance away.

  67. caitlin the shark says:

    One of my favorite mental images in the whole series is Johanna pushing over Wiress. When I read it I honestly giggled. And of course Finnick automatically recognizes her after that act of aggression.
    Team Johanna forever.

  68. Mimi says:

    I'm glad I'm not the only one who got to the revelation about the arena and felt like an idiot for not realizing earlier what it was.

    Like, the image of the arena in my brain was a perfect clock. And somehow, I never got it, even with the tick-tocks and everything, I LITERALLY DIDN'T GET IT UNTIL KATNISS SAID, THIS IS A CLOCK.

    HOW.

  69. Esther says:

    As I recall, I called the clock twist when the bell tolled midnight. On the other hand I could be remembering incorrectly.

  70. Mauve_Avenger says:

    Now with more pi(e).
    <img src="http://i1133.photobucket.com/albums/m593/the_mauve_avenger/Catching%20Fire%20Tables/QuarterQuellArenaPie-1.gif"&gt;
    Aside from my lack of GIMP skills and the fact that this pie has no vent holes, does this look right?

    Edited to correct image. It would be great if I could remember not to move pictures after posting them.

  71. 4and6forever says:

    Yeah… see, I TOTALLY DID NOT SEE THE CLOCK THING COMING. When they had the bongy chime thing at midnight, I just thought "Ah, there's the clock, striking midnight AS IS NORMAL." I live in a house with at least 7 grandfather clocks (or tallcase clocks, whichever floats your boat.) and so hearing ticking (and chiming!) all the time is normal for me. (Its creepy, really, how they all tick in unison…)

  72. Hotaru-hime says:

    The second we hear the arena's a fucking clock, I imagine everyone's facepalmed going "OMG IT WAS SO OBVIOUS WE ARE MORONS".

  73. Revolution64 says:

    Your heartstrings must me like, flat by now. Collins keeps crushing them, that monster.
    This chapter just came up and bit me in the butt.
    <img class='event-item-lol-image' src='http://chzgifs.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/rocketprobep1.gif&#039; title="Rocket Probe Gif – Rocket Probe" alt="Rocket Probe Gif – Rocket Probe" height="264px" width="360px" />see more Gifs

  74. Yusra says:

    The tributes that died over the years?
    Maybe it's muttated as well! O_O

  75. Quizzical says:

    loved this chapter.

  76. Randomcheeses says:

    And now I am mourning Mags all over again. Poor Finnick!

  77. Gabbie says:

    COLLINS, YOU PULL AT MY HEARTSTRINGS. And then you crush them.

    THIS. IT'S SO TRUE. And I loved how Haymitch was so quick to respond to Katniss. Too awesome. <3 And… Mags. :'( I loved her more after I read this chapter, how she and Finnick were so close.

  78. Mauve_Avenger says:

    Finally found the gif. I was thinking this during the prank on Peeta:
    <img src="http://cdn.smosh.com/smosh-pit/092010/ween-garbage-can-punch.gif"&gt;
    Only, you know, accounting for the fact that there are weapons present:
    <img src="http://i1133.photobucket.com/albums/m593/the_mauve_avenger/tumblr_ldc8i7CGgC1qa48wxo1_500.gif"&gt;

  79. IsabelArcher2 says:

    I really, really want to know how Wiress won her games. I mean, I know she's super-smart, and probably could have devised some trap for the other tributes, but the qualities she's shown so far don't seem like they are very victorish. These books need to be 100,000 times longer so that I can get more backstory. Can we please jointly mail Collins and politely demand multiple prequels?

  80. trash_addict says:

    Fucking amazing.

    Although I DO have Ke$ha in my head now.

    • Isa says:

      LMAO at the thought of Wiress's crazy muttering actually being her singing what would by then be "oldies." And no one getting it because they are just young'uns too hip to be listening to anything made before their lifetime. ALTERNATE INTERPRETATION, Y/Y?

  81. Gabbie says:

    Mark, are you gonna start quoting everything in the book now that you know the arena is a clock? Like, every little thing suddenly matters?

  82. erin says:

    Lmao "some drunk…"

  83. Rose Brazeale says:

    Wait . . . clock? The arena . . . is a clock? I don't understand what conclusion Katniss came to. 🙁 If it's not a spoiler, please explain it.

    • Annalebanana says:

      There is a lovely picture on the last page, but it is a clock in that there are twelve zones set with a specific attack that launches at a set time. i.e. the wave would go off at 10 in the morning and 10 at night. i hope that makes more sense.

  84. Saber says:

    Well, that's all we know about him. Would you prefer "Some drunk who vomited at training"? That would be too long.

  85. Ladybug245 says:

    Mark I'm so glad you are reading this book. I love it and I'm enjoying you reading and sharing.

  86. qwopisinthemailbox says:

    WHAT. OH MY GOD WHAT?

  87. easilyentranced says:

    The words "Tick, tock. This is a clock." would sound ridiculous in any other context, but in this book it blows minds. Wiress! <3

  88. Pilar says:

    The Finnick-and-Katniss-scaring-Peeta scene is my favourite in this entire book. It just always makes me smile when I read it. <3 x'D

    I really, really cannot stand Johanna. Slapping people like that…I mean, I know that they're supposed to kill each other and maybe Katniss isn't the bubbliest, most friendly person ever, but still.

  89. Dannie. says:

    Oh gosh. This is wonderful.

  90. Shanella says:

    I don't know why, but I just felt like this was somehow appropriate.

    <img src="http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/complex_conjugate.png&quot; width="500/">

    • lattemama says:

      So glad I checked if this had been posted before doing it myself . I got a good laugh this morning reading the xkcd-feed.

      Shit just got real.

    • cait0716 says:

      I laughed so hard and I kind of wish one of my professors had made this joke back in college. Of course, the ones with this sense of humor didn't teach quantum mechanics, so I guess it wouldn't have happened.

  91. Homicidal clock 😛 Awesome.

  92. PaulineParadise says:

    Tick tock
    on the clock
    Capitol blows the tributes up
    Tonight Imma fight
    till I see the sunlight
    Tick tock
    on the clock
    And the games won’t stop no-oh,
    O-o-wa-oh, o-o-wa-oh!

    Ke$ha – ‘Tick Tock’ (Catching Fire Remix)

  93. roxie says:

    And this is why the gamemaker kept flashing his watch to Katniss 🙂

  94. cassanova369 says:

    The .gif from How I Met Your Mother made me love you even more.

  95. capnoa says:

    Yeh! You got to the Tick Tock part!! It was part of the haiku I made but I had to wait to use it..and now I forget it!! Ugggghh!!

    ~Mandii

    My Hunger Games dream casting at: https://thelifeofmandii.wordpress.com/2011/01/17/

  96. PK9 says:

    Written immediately after reading chapter 22:

    Aw, Peeta has his “Rue” moment.

    So now we have an alliance of six. And blood rain? Ew.

    How are Finnick and Johanna so chummy?

    Aaack! It’s a clock! Now I’m going to have to draw an arena diagram to keep track of everything along with my scorecard! Wiress is smart! And now I wonder what the significance of what Plutarch Heavensbee said about “it starts at midnight” and showing her the watch.

    (That was 6 months ago, so I did draw the arena diagram and if someone else hasn't posted it I will try to figure out how to embed pictures).

  97. Bookworm2829 says:

    Amazing use of Ginny Weasley gif. I approve.

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    [WORDPRESS HASHCASH] The poster sent us ‘22587142 which is not a hashcash value.

  99. Hanh says:

    By the time I return to the jungle to gather some moss to dry them, all the monkeys' bodies have vanished.
    "Where did they go?" I ask.
    "We don't know exactly. The vines shifted and they were gone," says Finnick.

    Am I the only one who found it strange Finnick said 'we?' I'm pretty sure Peeta didn't go with him into the jungle to retrieve Katniss' arrows.

    Thank you poor morphling. You deserve an Aeris death. 🙁
    <img src="C:UsersHanhDocumentsDownloadsDownloadsaeris-death_o_GIFSoupcom.gif">

    • Hanh says:

      Oh darn. I don't know how to post gifs but here's the link: C:UsersHanhDocumentsDownloadsDownloadsaeris-death_o_GIFSoupcom.gif

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