Disclaimer: I don't own the Hunger Games series, even though it would mean the world to me if I did :)

If Only I Could Believe


Life never got easier. If anything, it got harder. Each day was like a heavy shackle, tied to your ankle, weighing you down as the minutes ticked by. Sure, Peeta helped. But it killed me, because he was the only one left. Gale had left me, abandoned me practically. What a friend he turned out to be. He left me for money. My mother, my darling mother, couldn't bear to be home. I couldn't be mad at her for leaving. Anyway, she was doing really well with her hospital in District 4. I'm sure that it still didn't take the pain of Prim's death away, though, cause I sure know it never leaves me. Every night, she's there in my dreams, flaming, dying, dead. She asks me why I let this happen to her. The answer is always I don't know, but really I do. It's because I'm weak. It's because I didn't stop Gale from creating that wretched bomb. I'm a horrible person, and I will always be. Peeta told me I wasn't a horrible person, but what did he know? He was brainwashed. He was the only person who understood me, and that was taken away. Sure, he remembers more each day, in fact, he's in love with me now, and truth is, I love him to, but that's selfish of me. He deserves better. He tells me I'm beautiful. He says that I made the right decisions, and I'm where I need to be. I wish I could believe him.

I did love him though. He was there to stop the screaming. The dreams still never went away, but he could stop the screaming. That was appreciated. In the mornings, he would make me breakfast. Greasy Sal was still here for us, but Peeta said not to worry, he would cook around here. We had a good system. I would bring fresh meat, and he would do the baking. It worked nicely. We had a simple life. Very routine, very calm, but it was functional. With the physiological damage I've been through, I couldn't handle anymore. That was another problem. I wasn't the same either. But who should be when they've gone to Hell and back? I've seen death countless times, I've had life-threatening injuries countless times, and I've done wrong to others countless times. I was a lost cause. And somehow, Peeta still accepted me. I don't even know how he recovered. Somehow, he's gone from strangling me to kissing me in less than a year. I never foresaw this.

Today, he wanted to go to the forest with me. We weren't planning on hunting, just taking a walk. The forest really was the best place for that. The streets still had rotting corpses lying around. There were a lot less than before, but still, more than pleasurable. We didn't talk much on these walks. We didn't have much to talk about, and anything that we did have to talk about was painful, so we didn't. Anyway, both of our brains aren't like they used to be, so it was easier just not to think. Peeta took my hand and we started our journey to the forest. I decided to start making my list of things about me.

My name is Katniss Everdeen. I am eighteen years old. I live in District 12. I was in the Hunger Games. The Hunger Games don't exist anymore. That's because of me. I shot President Coin. I was taken to prison. I was freed. I went to live in Victors Village. Haymitch was the only one to come with me. Haymitch died six months later from intoxication. Peeta stays with me now. He somehow recovered and loves me. I love him. I don't want to love him. I want to be dead, but that's never going to happen.

By the time I was at the end of my list, we had reached the forest. The falls leaves were on the trees, and I breathed in the cool air. It made me feel a little more alive, if that's what you could call me.

"So, why are we doing this?" I finally spoke, breaking the pleasant silence.

"I wanted to talk to you about something."

"Oh." What kind of answer was that? He was going to think I didn't care, which, truthfully, I probably didn't.

"I know, we don't usually talk, but I promise this is a happy subject." I smirked. What was happy anymore?

"So, you found something happy to talk about?"

"Yes I did. Katniss, you know I love you." Was this supposed to be new news?

"Yes, I do."

"And you love me, don't you?"

"Of course."

"And you don't want me to leave, right?"

"I don't want you to leave."

"So, why don't we get married?" I hadn't really given much thought to us being married. Whenever I thought of marriage, I thought of two things. I thought of the games, and Peeta and I's fake engagement. I remember thinking I was never going to marry Peeta, which makes this moment all the more ironic. I also think of Finnick. I think of his marriage to Annie. I think of their beautiful child. Their beautiful, fatherless child. I think of Finnick getting his head ripped off by the mutt. I shake my head to remove the images.

"Well, I never really thought about it. The word marriage doesn't always bring back the best memories." Peeta shuddered to. I wonder if he was thinking the same things that I was?

"That is true, but I would like to make it official, in some way." I didn't really see the point in marriage. We were practically the only living people in the whole district. No one really cared. But maybe Peeta just liked things to be official. I decided that I had been selfish enough, so I just gave in.

"Sure, let's get married."

"Don't worry, it doesn't have to be a big ceremony or anything. We can just ask Greasy Sal to say a few words, sign a few papers, and then it's over." I nodded. This was an acceptable way of marriage. It didn't make me think of the bad memories attached to it.

"I can do this." Peeta took my face gently in his hands, looking a little scared to touch me. We never knew when he would break into one of his episodes. The tracker jacker's damage was still in their, not much, but it was there. He pressed his lips softly to mine. It felt nice.

"Good. Because I don't want to lose you again. I've done my duty. I've kept you alive. Now, I have to keep you with me, because I've learned I can never live without you." His words are sweet, and they bring joy to me, but I still have trouble believing them. I'm nothing special. I've hurt people. I've killed people, so I still don't know why he loves me, but I guess I'll just accept it.

"I love you."

"I love you, too Katniss. Always."

This was my first Hunger Games FF! I hope you liked it. I really loves these books! It's probably my favorite book series. I hope you enjoyed! Review!

Love, Twipi :D