Katniss stays awake all night caring for Peeta, while thinking that his leg where Cato cut him is getting worse. The infection there seems to be spreading which will cause blood poisoning if left untreated. His fever is down in the morning and he insists that she get some sleep while he keeps watch. She wakes in the afternoon and Peeta asks her to tell him a story about the happiest day of her life. She tells him about the time she got Prim a goat for her birthday. She omitted the fact that she bought the goat by selling a large buck that her and Gale had hunted but instead told him that she bought it selling her mother’s old locket. The goat had been mauled by a dog and looked like it would not live but she had a good feeling about it and bought the goat anyway. Prim fell in love with it and nursed it back to health and the goat has more than repaid the cost in goat’s milk and cheese. Peeta replies that one day he will do the same.
The trumpets blare and an announcement is made. The announcer invites all the tributes to a feast where there will be a backpack waiting with each tributes district number containing something that they desperately need. Peeta immediately insists that she will not go and risk her life for him, which Katniss objects to. Peeta states that if she goes he will follow her, which causes them to argue. Katniss goes outside the cave to wash up and notices another gift from Haymitch. It is sleep syrup which will knock Peeta out long enough for Katniss to go to the feast and find the medicine that Peeta desperately needs. She mashes some berries and mixes the syrup in and gives it to Peeta who only realizes what she had done as he was losing consciousness.
Peeta and Katniss spend many hours talking while they are in the cave together and genuinely enjoy each other’s company. This causes Katniss to become confused about her feelings toward Peeta and makes her question what is her genuine emotion and what is simply for the sake of the audience. She risks her life for the chance to save Peeta in this chapter, which gives the reader some sense of the gratitude and feelings she has toward him.
Katniss camouflages the opening of the cave and tries to get some sleep while thinking of her strategy for the next morning. She is worried because she has the ability to kill from afar but is not great in close combat. She thinks about the people from home watching the Games and wonders if Gale wants Peeta to survive and what he thinks of this romance plot between Katniss and Peeta. She prepares to leave and gives Peeta a kiss for the cameras. She makes it to the Cornucopia before sunrise and finds her hiding spot.
As the sun rises, a table comes out of the ground with backpacks on it. Foxface quickly runs out of the Cornucopia itself and sprints away with her backpack before anyone can react. Katniss kicks herself for not thinking of that strategy and decides to just sprint to the table. She grabs her pack as a knife slices her forehead. She turns immediately and shoots an arrow at Clove, the District 2 tribute who had thrown the knife, injuring her arm. Clove slams into her and knocks her down while taunting her about how they are going to kill her just like they killed her ally Rue.
As Cato starts to slice Katniss in the lip, Thresh, the boy from District 11 grabs her asks if they cut up Rue like they cut up Katniss and slams a rock into Clove’s skull, killing her. He asks Katniss why Clove called Rue her ally, and Katniss explained they helped each other and that she killed Rue’s attacker. Thresh tells her that he will let her live this time and that they are even. As she runs away, she sees Thresh take off with two large backpacks and Cato kneeling at Clove’s body. She suspects that Cato will chase after Thresh since he has the backpack meant for him. Katniss makes her way back to the cave and finds a needle of medicine, which she injects into Peeta. She then passes out due to her injuries.
In this chapter, there is a heavy amount of sacrifice with the characters. Katniss starts out by preparing to sacrifice herself for Peeta and ends up getting saved from certain death by Thresh. Thresh then sacrifices his chance to kill Katniss and have one less tribute to fight by letting her go after hearing about how she helped out Rue. Thresh goes further and draws Cato, the most dangerous and strong tribute, away from Katniss by stealing his pack and running in the opposite direction. Thresh must have known that this would probably mean his death but he sacrificed his chance of a clean getaway to help out a fellow tribute. This also allows the readers to see that many of the tributes are normal, nice people who are caught in a horrible situation. Thresh’s actions also show the advantage of helping one another out to achieve goals, and how advantageous unity between the districts would be to rebel against the oppressive government.