Katniss and company ride an amazing crystal elevator to the twelfth floor of the Training Center where the District 12 team will be staying.
Effie Trinket, the pink-haired escort, is on hand and is impressed with how well Peeta and Katniss did in the ceremonies. She's never had a team do well, apparently. She tells them she's been talking them up as best she can, but she's not the one responsible for getting sponsors. That's Haymitch.
Though lacking in other areas, Katniss admires Effie's determination.
Katniss's quarters are plush with an elaborate shower that instantly untangles your hair, a programmable closet, and a giant menu with food that appears on command.
After showering and dressing, Katniss is called to dinner where the whole team (Effie, Haymitch, Cinna, the stylists, and the candidates) assembles. Servers in white tunics bring them roast beef and noodles in green sauce.
Katniss drinks wine and her head is a bit groggy. A cake is brought in and set ablaze when Katniss recognizes the serving girl who is setting it on fire.
She exclaims "I know you!" but as soon as she does, feels anxiety and guilt. The girl looks terrified. Effie tells Katniss there is no way she could know the girl, who is an Avox.
What's an Avox? Someone who has committed a crime, like treason, and has had their TONGUE cut out. Wowzers.
Effie informs Katniss that Avoxes are not to be spoken to unless it's an order that they're being given.
Peeta swoops in to save the day, claiming that the reason Katniss must have recognized the girl is because she looks a lot like someone back from the Seam – Delly Cartwright.
Katniss knows this is not true (the girls look nothing alike) but she plays along anyhow.
The team watches the replay of the opening ceremonies and Haymitch comments that the hand holding was just the "perfect touch of rebellion" (6.35).
With dinner over, Peeta and Katniss walk to their rooms, but instead decide to head to the roof. Why? Because Peeta wants to know why he was covering for Katniss. Who is the Avox girl and why did Katniss recognize her?
On the roof Katniss wonders if anyone has ever tried to escape by jumping off. Peeta says that the whole place is electrified so that it's not possible.
The two retire to the roof garden, with its twinkling wind chimes, to speak in whispers.
Katniss then relates the story of the Avox girl. Ready? Here we go:
Gale and Katniss were hunting one day in the forest around District 12 when they saw a girl and a boy with tattered clothes running like crazy. The two were from the Capitol, Katniss could tell.
Katniss also knew they were in trouble, but did not help. She could only watch from her hiding place.
A hovercraft appeared and hauled the boy up by shooting a spear through him. More than likely, he died. The girl was caught in a net and hauled up. She called for help, but Katniss didn't give it to her.
Peeta asks if they saw Katniss and she says she doesn't know, but really she does know. She and the girl locked eyes.
Peeta wonders where they were going, then says aloud that he'd leave the Capitol too. He would go home, if they let him.
As they go in, Peeta plumbs for information about Gale. Are he and Katniss related? Did Gale come to see her on the last day in District 12?
Changing the subject, Katniss mentions that his father had brought her cookies on that day. Peeta seems surprised, but is he just acting? Katniss can't tell.
Peeta tells Katniss that his father knew her mother when they were children. Interesting.
The two part ways for the night. Inside Katniss' room, the redheaded Avox girl is collecting the outfit from the opening ceremony.
Katniss wants to apologize for everything, but she doesn't. Instead she gets under the covers and pulls the covers over her head.
She wonders if the Avox girl will enjoy watching her die.