The Stuyvesant Hungry Games

Stuyvesant hosts its very own version of the Hunger Games!

Reading Time: 8 minutes

“...Where am I?” 

You look around to find yourself trapped in a wooden cage—oddly similar to the one from Soph-Frosh SING!—with 26 other Stuyvesant students. A huge, dilapidated sign hangs haphazardly outside the cage’s imposing frame, reading, “The 20-meter PACER test will begin in 30 seconds. Line up at the start.” The cage is completely covered by a giant black curtain; no one can see anything beyond the sign.

Just as you are about to question what is going on, a hideous screeching sound fills the cage. For a moment, you wonder if you really are in SING!, and junior band has just started to play.

*static* “Welcome to the—”

BEEP! Everyone jumps as a fake warning bell cuts off the announcement. The announcer, sounding mildly annoyed, continues:

*static* “Welcome to Stuyvesant’s very own Hungry Games! In this game, you will have to survive as long as possible while also trying to assassinate—ahem, I mean, outsmart your fellow students with physics textbooks, chalk dust, and any other dangerous items you can find in the building! The cafeteria pizza is off-limits, however—no bioweapons. I will be busy gathering supplies for the supply drop, which will be relevant later. In the meantime, let the games begin! And have a thriving Thursday, Stuy!”

THUD!!! The cage is suddenly enveloped in a thick, white fog. Though you hear the walls of the cage collapse, you cannot see anything.

A minute later, the fog dissipates, revealing the Sophomore Bar, which looks suspiciously normal. The floor isn’t damp? There are no abandoned personal items that should be reported to a TSA employee immediately? Everyone looks around at each other in silence and uncertainty.

It’s a tall girl with black hair and a pair of spectacles, along with intense freshman energy (i.e. proper Physical Education attire), who speaks first: “Don’t panic, everyone! I found a pen in my pocket so if we find some paper we can create a paper airplane to signal for help—”

She suddenly falls to the ground, revealing the person behind her, who is aggressively grasping the most dangerous of the writing utensils—a red pen. A crudely-drawn, red Among Us character can be seen on the victim’s back. Those sussy eyes…

BEEP! The bell is so loud that even when you cover your ears, it still sounds like a FNaF jumpscare. “Intelligent Freshman was stabbity-stabbed by a Hello Kitty pen. Twenty-six remain.”

Pandemonium ensues as people scatter faster than News writers running from their Spec deadlines. You start running as fast as you can to the nearest classroom. The only thing on your mind is getting your hands on a weapon. You run to the English hallway and try every door, but they are all locked. You can hear blood-curdling screams from the escalators—

BEEP! “League Gamer attempted to perform Ultimate Attack and fell down the escalator. Valorant Tryhard threw his phone after losing a match, but the phone bounced back and hit his head. Twenty-four remain.”

In a flurry of panic, you run into the Hudson stairwell, past the couple casually making out in this time of crisis (mating instincts kick in when the world is ending), and make your way to the first floor. By some miracle, the exit doors open, but the wailing sound they make is more than enough to deter you from walking through them.

*static* “BOO! Did I scare ya?”

You swear that the second you get your hands on this rambling buffoon, you are going to sentence them to a full year of Genetics Research.

Suddenly, the ground rumbles as dust falls onto you from above. The air fills with a familiar smell… Is that Spicy Shin Ramen?!

“Score! Three people died from my explosive ramen trap! Man, I really, really didn’t think Stuy kids would be stupid enough to pick up food from the ground. Also, there are free goodies at the Junior Atrium. Grab them if you dare!”

You start running to the half-floor. If all the rooms are locked, how else are you going to arm yourself?

Heading to the 2-3 escalator in hopes of finding a weapon, you wonder what types of artillery await. A Minecraft Diamond Sword? A 10-Pack of “Inflatable Physics Tests”?

Out of nowhere, a hand grabs your arm. Scared out of your mind, you try to shake it off, but it doesn’t budge. You can hear yourself screaming, but it’s no use. Your assassin’s hair falls straight into your eyes, effectively blinding you. You close your eyes, beginning to accept that maybe, this is the end.

Just as she’s about to stab you with her Muji pen, the 2-3 escalator stops and she falls backward, tumbling down the metal steps. But before you can steal the pen from her hand, she turns red and disappears in a puff of pixelated smoke, in classic Minecraft fashion.

BEEP! “Block Game Player hit the ground too hard. Nineteen remain. Also, the 2-3 escalator is broken! It will be out of order until the Spec website is back up—also known as never.”

You don’t have time to process what just happened, or maybe you simply choose not to. Maybe you’re growing to like the fight. Maybe you were born for it. By the time you reach the Junior Atrium, it’s a complete war zone. A makeshift field hospital has been set up, and a modern-day Florence Nightingale in cat maid garb dresses the oozing, inky wound of a ghastly pale sophomore. A competitor chases after at least five other people, an overflowing binder of precalculus homework cradled in his throwing arm like a deadly football. Another person is rollerblading while somehow carrying the entire McDonald’s ice cream machine, spewing chocolate ice cream all over the floor to try and get others to slip on it. Inside the third-floor gym, there are two people wearing red “M” buckets on their heads, trying to slap each other with Princess Peach plushies while yelling, “ITS-A-ME, MARIO!” The bell becomes a constant stream of noise, sounding like a sleep-deprived brass band in some lost fifth dimension.

BEEP! “Ferry’s Enthusiast was crushed by Broken McDonald’s Ice Cream Machine. Thirteen remain.”

BEEP! “Terry’s Enthusiast tried a Bacon Avocado Chipotle on a Roll. Twelve remain.”

BEEP! “Gullible Freshman entered Mr. Moran’s office on a dare. Eleven remain.”

In a bold leap of faith, you run to the burning heap of “weapons” (they bear a whopping zero percent resemblance to actual armaments) and begin digging through the pile. “An AP Biology test from 2017? Hmm, probably useless…” you think to yourself as you continue digging through. “‘The Hidden Tapes of Mr. Yu’?? Maybe good for some Stuy Confessions posts… and 10 life-sized Genshin Impact body pillows. Fantastic.” Suddenly, you hear footsteps behind you, and, panicking, decide to dive straight into the garbage pile. Big mistake. The bottom of the pile is lined with year-old Ferry’s sandwiches, and your brand new Senior SING! shirt gets completely ruined as you splash into the wet puddle of soggy bread. Ah well. That shirt was never meant to see the light of day anyway.

In the near-total darkness of the pile, you find the perfect weapon—a magical textbook that automatically morphs into the victim’s most dreaded class subject! Springing out of the garbage heap, you yell a war chant (likely filled with expletives) as you charge your attacker. The book morphs into a five-inch-deep Frontend Manual. Your attacker’s eyes widen in horror as he sees the yellow-and-blue snake logo appear in front of his eyes, and he stumbles backward into a puddle of liquified cafeteria pizza!

BEEP! “Aggressive CS Nerd was handed a full Frontend Manual. Nine remain.”

With renewed confidence, you begin to search for other victims to traumatize with the magic book. With each kill, you feel yourself growing more and more powerful!

BEEP! “Pure Child was darkened by Wattpad Fanfic! Ouch, what a way to go! Three remain—you know what that means. DEATH MATCH TIME!”

Out of nowhere, Mr. Moran sprints toward you at hypersonic speed. Before you can even react, he grabs you by the neck and drags you up seven flights of stairs, all the way to the 10th floor.

The PA system crackles and smoke begins pouring out of the sound holes, but the announcement eventually comes through: “Welcome to the death match! Here, there is no hiding! Use the weapons you’ve collected to become the last one standing! Begin!”

To your left, you see an opponent armed with several hot glue guns and the dismembered corpse of the Robotics Team 694’s robot, wheels included. To your right, you see the holder of the McDonald’s ice cream machine, but he’s somehow managed to obtain all eight of the 16 Handles ice cream machines (fully functioning) as well!

Ice cream man attacks you first. He fires at you a horrific blend of flavors that should never have existed in a million years, yelling, “Eat some Key-Lime-Pie/Rocky-Road ice-cream mix! And how about some melted McDonald’s ice cream on the side as well?” He splashes you with a giant barrel of heavy cream, soaking the magic book in your pocket. “This will be easy,” he says with a smirk, dairy dripping from the corners of his smug mouth. Unfortunately for him, you pull out the book, and it morphs into an “Eating Healthy for Dummies” guide. The nine ice cream machines in his possession disintegrate, each one replaced by floating text that says “ERROR: 19,300 calories exceeds the recommended daily calorie intake by 865 percent!” You take advantage of his shock and glue him to the ground, and just like that, he is no longer standing. Now onto the robotics kid.

Unfortunately, it seems that the robotics kid also has some life-sized robots to back him up. You narrowly avoid getting flattened by the basketball-playing robot as it chases its red ball across the 10th floor hallway with frightening speed. Just as you think you’re safe from the robot apocalypse (even outside the game, you’ve been currying favor with ChatGPT for months), the elevator dings and a robot with a giant baseball bat emerges. At least, it tries to. The robot ends up whacking the elevator wall several times before the elevator doors shut on it, reducing the robot to a lone wheel rolling across the ground. Robotics Kid sighs and mutters, “You’ve gotta be kidding me. I swear I fixed that ages ago!” In his disappointment, he doesn’t notice that you have grabbed a glue gun from his pocket. “Get on my level!” you shout as you glue him to the ground, coming face-to-face with him for the first time (he’s 6’5” or some other absurd height, and you are average Stuy height, or 5’3”).

The announcer slowly walks out of a doorway you never knew existed, revealing himself to be none other than Principal Yu.

“Congratulations, pre-freshie! You have won the game even though you were never supposed to participate in the first place! As a reward, here is a binding acceptance letter to Bronx Science! Have fun being forever inferior to—”

You pick up your magic book and shove it toward Principal Yu, hoping to avoid an abysmal future at Bronx Science, where the average SAT score is negative. Something strange happens, though. The book morphs and shakes, its front and back cover becoming brighter by the second. A few seconds later, the book’s light is blinding and you are forced to close your eyes.

When the light fades, Principal Yu is unconscious on the floor, and the magic book reads, “BTS Disbands?”