Mockingjay Chapter 1 Summary
How It All Goes Down
- Katniss Everdeen stands in the ash-covered ruins of her house. "Firebombs" (1.2) have destroyed her hometown in District 12.
- The people she's working with in District 13 didn't want her to visit the ruins of her home, but she insisted on it.
- The former Head Gamemaker turned rebel, Plutarch, backed her up.
- Katniss's head hurts from where another Hunger Games competitor, Johanna, attacked her during the Quarter Quell. She tries to remember what happened before she was rescued from the Quell, but can't quite recapture it.
- She reviews what she does know: her name, age, and the fact that she got out of the Hunger Games. Oh, and her good friend Peeta is MIA.
- Her friend Gale calls to her from his position in an air protective control. Katniss says she's all right, and moves out from her old house into the rest of the city.
- She has to walk through the remains of all the people who died as a result of her actions, when she tested the parameters of the arena used in a previous Games.
- Katniss remembers a warning she got from President Snow, who told her she could set the world aflame with what she'd done.
- So she mourns the incredible loss of life in her old district, and the fact that even the survivors have been forced to seek shelter elsewhere.
- Katniss also regrets how District 13 played a big part in destroying District 12.
- Katniss thinks back to the end of the Quarter Quell (the last Games); as soon as it happened, District 12 lost all power and was attacked from the air. Gale saved people by taking them to the Meadow where he and Katniss used to hunt.
- Among the people he saved were Katniss's mother and sister, who helped take care of the refugees until people from District 13 showed up and took 12's remaining folks to safety.
- A man named Dalton later told Katniss that the people from 13 did this not from the goodness of their hearts but because they needed more workers and citizens.
- Katniss, full of all these terrible feelings and memories, passes through the town square and by Peeta's family's bakery. The rest of Peeta's family died in the bombings. This likely doesn't help her mood.
- She stumbles over what turns out to be a piece of a gallows, and her mind fills with – yes, even more – negative, frightening images. She wishes she could contact Peeta, but she can't.
- She tries to escape from the ashes and heads to the other house she used to live in.
- Katniss goes over what other people, including the president of District 13, Alma Coin, have been trying to tell her. They want her to step forward and lead the revolution: become the Mockingjay.
- The way they treat her reminds her of the way she was treated for the arena. She can tell they wish they'd gotten Peeta out to lead the revolution, and the whole situation just makes her more unhappy.
- Katniss thinks over who else escaped from the arena: Beetee, the electrics whiz in poor health, and Finnick, the other tribute who's emotionally damaged.
- Katniss moves through her house and tries to determine what choice she should make.
- The biggest thing keeping her involved is that Peeta isn't safe yet. Otherwise she might just walk away from the responsibility and power served up on a platter for her.
- Katniss finds her sister's cat, Buttercup, and packs him up to take with her. She has to get going. She goes to get her dad's hunting coat and realizes something is wrong.
- She finds a beautiful white rose and realizes it's a message from President Snow – that he's still out to get her. Great.
- She leaves the house and gets onto the hovercraft to return to District 13, still preoccupied by the creepy warning rose.