- "Simple. We go straight to the punitive. Instead of suggesting people watch, we make it the law."
- ―Festus on how to get people to watch the Hunger Games[src]
Festus Creed was a male resident of the Capitol and a student of the Academy. He was one of 24 top-performing seniors at the Academy selected to be a mentor for the 10th Hunger Games. He was assigned the female tribute from District 4, Coral.
Festus was a part of Coriolanus Snow's inner circle since birth. His family came from old Capitol money, largely from District 7 timber. It took a hit during the First Rebellion, but rebounded nicely in the reconstruction effort.
During a session with Professor Crispus Demigloss, Demigloss asked the mentors to brainstorm ways to encourage people to watch the Hunger Games, which were considered grim viewing at the time. Festus's suggestion was to execute anyone in the districts who did not watch and to banish anyone in the Capitol that did not watch to the districts, executing them the next year if they messed up again. The class then began debating the idea, considering it unenforceable because you couldn't send Peacekeepers to everyone's door. They also discussed Coriolanus's idea of having the Capitol citizens bet on the tributes, which Festus believed would liven things up.
Festus was present at the Capitol Zoo, presumably to meet with his tribute, Coral. However, as Arachne's throat was slit by her own tribute, Festus stood next to her and Coriolanus and they exchanged helpless, worried looks. After Arachne died and was transported away by medics, Clemensia Dovecote managed to join the pair. As the three of them walked home, Festus proposed that they come back to his apartment. However, as they reached his apartment complex he burst into tears, leaving Snow and Clemensia to bid him goodnight.
Festus only received minor injuries from the arena bombing, sporting a sling on his arm and stitches on his cheek. He visited Snow when he was in the hospital, telling him that the Academy had canceled classes, and choked up upon mentioning Diana and Apollo Ring.
Festus and Coral were one of the few mentor-tribute pairs who had something to participate with during the interviews. After the class with Dr. Gaul, Festus and Hilarius Heavensbee discussed strategies to use for female tributes. Festus rebuked Hilarius' claim that girls didn't fight the same way as boys by arguing that Coral could compete well against the male tributes.
10th Hunger Games
Festus arrived to Heavensbee Hall just as Clemensia argued with Lysistrata and Coriolanus. As Festus rebutted Clemensia's anger, she told him to shut up. After she left, Festus took a seat beside Snow and Lysistrata while questioning her hostility toward Coriolanus for her sickness, believing it odd.
On the morning of the second day of the Games, Festus showed discontent at not being fed. However, Coriolanus gifted him a bag of bread rolls, proud that he gave something for a change, as he owed the Creeds a lot in return. Later that day, Festus worked with Persephone Price to coordinate strategies, and Coriolanus could tell Festus was falling for her. Coriolanus also gave Festus lima beans further into the Games for breakfast, as he had lost his appetite. He swapped Festus' empty bowl with his own to avoid reprimands.
When Clemensia refused to feed her tribute, Reaper, Festus told her to give him food and called her heartless when she responded, asking him to mind his own business. Later, he apologized when he saw Reaper taking Wovey's dead body to his makeshift morgue.
Festus's tribute, Coral, was killed by a snake muttation released into the Capitol Arena by Dr. Volumnia Gaul. As he was dismissed from the proceedings, Snow gave him a bear hug, emotional at his reliable friend being out of the running.
Coriolanus Snow considered Creed, along with Lysistrata Vickers, to be someone who liked Sejanus Plinth better most of his other classmates at the Academy and someone who could be counted on to say nice things about him. He thus invited him, along with Vickers, to a party to celebrate what would have been Plinth's 19th birthday.
Personality and traits
Festus Creed was rather irrational, as he had once dared Snow to have a one night stand with a girl in an alleyway. He was also entertained by dogfights, showing that he wasn't as sympathetic as his other peers, such as Sejanus and Lysistrata. However, he could be sympathetic to a degree, as he demanded for Clemensia to feed her tribute Reaper during the Games. Festus also had a big appetite, as he quickly ate Snow's bread rolls and lima beans.
Festus was bigger and burlier than most boys his age.
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 7
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 6
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 10
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 11
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 12
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 13
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 16
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 19
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 18
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 20
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Epilogue
- The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, Chapter 13