Forgive me for the shortness, and the smut drought.
"Aiden… Get back here!" Effie calls as our 'grandson' runs away after his parents, the lurching of the train knocks him to his ass so Effie can scoop him up. The boy swats at the door.
"Mama, dada!" he shouts.
Effie is a natural with kids, it's a crime she wasn't allowed to have a family of her own while it was still possible or safe for her to have kids, "I know, I know you're sad, but it's only for a little while," she coo's stroking his dark hair to stop his fussing.
"You're amazing with him…" she sits down on the couch as the boy buries his face in her chest, she's biting her lip, holding in something she's not sure if she should say, "Just say it Eff, honesty, remember?"
She nods, "It's just, being on the train with a fussing child. It brings back memories. Only now I'm allowed to coddle and protect," she holds the boy by his armpits and makes him look at her, "For your twelfth birthday," she sighs and hugs him to her, "You will never forget how fortunate you are…" I pour myself a glass of bourbon.
"Paylor already planning his party?"
"Haymitch, you promised not to drink while we were watching him!" she scolds.
"Why else would I come on this train but for the refreshments?" I ask flopping down next to her and giving Aiden an ice cube. She frowns as he sucks on it, "What? The kid's breaking gums. This way he'll sleep through the night and not feel his teeth pushing through," I smirk and he chews on the cube, "Old district twelve remedy."
The door whooshes open, "We're going to put Aiden down for his… Haymitch, five minutes… we just needed to make sure Gale and Johanna got settled. You couldn't wait five minutes?" Peeta asks picking Aiden up.
Three are two things Katniss and I have learned to avoid purely because of the memories they stir.
One. The construction sites in Twelve when they're using explosives. They sound like cannons and have sent both of us running for each other on more than one occasion.
Two. Thunder, we can't avoid it, only mask it.
Three days after we settle into the Capitol once more Gale and Johanna have a doctor's appointment and Haymitch and Effie have 'official government business' which we found out was code for drinks with the Senators.
"I'm going to put Aiden down for a nap," Katniss tells me as she wipes his lunch from his mouth, "If I can find him under this mess…" the sound of rain beats down on the roof. We had planned on walking Aiden to the park but the sky had other plans. Dark circles have found a home under her eyes, between the stress of the trip and a party they threw in our honor the night before we were both running on empty.
"You should join him…" I pick up her plate and bring it to the skink, "You're dead on your feet."
She smiles faintly, "You don't mind?"
The city and I live in a peaceful coexistence. I have my wife and we have our son. I trust that we're safe. I've slept great the last few days. Katniss on the other hand is waiting for something to jump out at her and spends most of her nights tossing and turning, "I wanted to get some drawing done and with my two biggest distractions being asleep," she picks up Aiden and kisses my cheek.
"Well, your biggest distractions will leave you be…"
I flip through my sketch book, my favorite subject being Katniss. Her every role is pictured here. First being Katniss the hunter, rebellious at a young age and mature beyond her years. Second comes the volunteer, then the tribute, or 'girl on fire'. Though the memory is fuzzy I can remember her face as we waited for the games to start, foolhardy and ready to run for the Cornucopia. The capitol couldn't take these memories away from me. I have Katniss the Victor, Katniss the Tribute (again), Katniss the Mockingjay. I have her when she was a mental Avox, when she shot Coin…
I skip a few pages, watching my wife evolve just as I remembered, the timid look she gave at our wedding to the playful, fierce look she wore while making me watch her play with herself. I couldn't draw her shortly after going into labor. Her pale, fearful face were forever burned in my memory.
I finally reach a clean page just after the last sketch, Aiden holding onto Katniss's middle and index finger as she taught him to walk.
The room lights up with bright lightning just as thunder shakes the entire apartment. I listen for any movement in the other room but it's hard to hear over the downpour.
I set the tablet down deciding it would be better for me to be with her than leave her to her own devices.
I open the door just as another rumble shakes our home, "Kat?" I ask seeing the empty bed. Aiden's dirty clothes are on the floor so she can't be far away. The sheets are thrown about even though we made the bed after waking up, "Katniss?" I ask opening the door to the bathroom.
Finally I check the closet. Flicking on the light I see her tuck her feet in where she's hidden behind rows of my pants, "Katniss?"
I hear a sob which makes my heart sink, "Oh Katniss…" I push aside the clothing and there she is, clutching a sleeping Aiden to her chest and shaking like she's been out in the cold for days.
"I though… I heard… It was a cannon Peeta. I had to protect him!" she sobs, clutching him even closer to her chest.
I try and kiss away her tears, "I know… But come, it's just thunder…" I lift her up and take Aiden from her, which only confuses her more.
"Where are you taking him? There's…" she huffs, "Peeta!" who ever knew I'd have to be the sane one?
"To his room so he can nap," she's on my heels, trying to make arguments but never getting out more than one word. She's only been asleep an hour, maybe more, maybe if she had been awake she'd only be nervous now, not shaking and confused.
"Come here…" I pull her to me as Aiden settles in his bed, "Look at him…" I rest my chin on her shoulder as she grips the edge of his crib.
"Safe…" she mumbles, a small reminder to herself, "He's… safe?" she asks.
I nod and kiss her neck, "Safe and sound, like he always will be. I promise," she nods, "Now, let's go. I could watch him forever too but. I want to show you something."
She stands confused in the middle of the living room as I make every single window look like the forest, "Safe?" I ask her, she just nods before whimpering as thunder rumbles through the apartment. Another button and sweet piano music fills the room, not loud enough to drown out the thunder, but be a distraction.
"May I have this dance?" I ask holding out my hand. She bites her lip, glancing at the door and down the hall before taking my hand.
"Of course," she murmurs draping her arms over my shoulders. We sway gently the music and I hold her tight to me as the thunder rumbles, "I love you…" she whispers.
"And I love you," I kiss her cheek as the song ends. She's stopped shaking and instead of looking around her forehead is rested on my collar bone.
"There are no more cannons…" she whispers finally, her voice is no longer confused and empty. Relief washes over me.
She jumps as another roll of thunder takes its course, with it the lights flicker and then quit, "It's just thunder," I remind her.
"Just thunder," she echo's before walking to the window just as lightning streaks across the sky. Her fingers press against the glass and she looks back just before the power returns, "I guess the thunder isn't so bad," she looks back and smiles and I know exactly what I'll be drawing next.
Katniss the healing. She's not perfect, neither of us are, but we're getting there, one step at a time.
She toes over to me, her steps cautious and calculated before her fingers grasp my shirt, "I love you," she tells me between heated kisses as she un-tucks my shirt.
"I love you," I tell her as we stop kissing only long enough to take off my shirt and her dress.
"Come," she takes my hand and pulls me to the bedroom, both of us knowing any minute our housemates could burst through the front door. She walks backwards effortlessly leading me to our bedroom where only a few minutes before she was hiding in the closet.
The door closes and I take charge, there is never a set dominant when we're together, either of us take charge at any given time. I spin her around so her back is against the cool door. A flash of lightning shows the dark but still shocked look on her face, "I need you," she whispers as I unhook her bra.
"You're the air I breathe," it falls before her as my lips crash on to hers. We've become experts at taking each other's clothing off. Her hands quickly find my belt and zipper and she one up's me, ridding me of my clothing in one expert swoop.
"It's going to be like that is it?" she squeals as I pick her up, throwing her over my shoulder crying my name before I toss her to the bed. She squirms away as I slide down her underwear.
"You're just mad because I got you naked first!" she teases, getting up on her knees and pouncing on me, once again taking charge as we move so I'm on my back and she's seated comfortably across my thighs, right above where my real leg ends and the metal begins.
"True…" she pins my hands above my head, "But you're just mad because I can lift you over my head like a sack of flour."
She leans down, my erection pressing against her abdomen as she kisses everywhere but my lips, "Tease…" I pant as her teeth sink into my neck ever so lightly.
"Mhm!" is all I get before she finally releases my hands, letting me explore the scared but still smooth skin of her back before finally settling on her backside. Sex between us anymore was all about timing, though it's grown easier now that Aiden sleeps through the night and takes hours long naps. Our time together is no longer quick sessions with little to no foreplay, now we're again free to explore almost forgotten territories. She doesn't expect it when I hook my good leg over her and flip her on her back, something I learned from years of wrestling.
I give her a second to get her bearings before letting my kisses trail from her lips to her jaw and finally down her body before settling on my target only after giving the scar across her abdomen she earned when Aiden was pulled from her a long kiss, "You're perfect…" I remind her, using the moisture already gathering between her legs to make it easier for my fingers to slip inside.
"Peeta!" she pants, already taking the sheets in her hand. I watch her body tremble as I gently kiss the small bundle of nerves I know will make her scream, "Please…" she pants before I teasingly trail my tongue along it.
She whimpers before I finally decide to stop teasing her.
I we hold each other close as she sits in my lap, her thighs moving her up and down along my length. Her nails dig into my back every time she comes down with yet another moan. We go slow, savoring each other's bodies, tasting each other's flesh before I can't hold it back anymore.
"Katniss…" I pant before her lips leave my neck and return to mine. It's beautiful, the climax that runs from my scalp to my toes. Times like this I even begin to feel as if both my legs are real. Every nerve firing at once some even thinking there are more.
She pulls off me, satisfied with herself as she lays down, "See?" she pants, "Thunder isn't so bad…"
I slide down and pull her sweaty body to me, "Sorry I ever doubted that," I chuckle, kissing the back of her head.