Wow. This is looooong overdue. But yes! I am back from my year long hiatus…. shorter than fall out boy. ;)

I want to apologize again for my lack of updates, you see I suffer from this fabulous thing called depression; and it's just been worse since my sister and brother died. I have missed you guys so much and I am officially back.

Johanna will not be going to the capitol.

It's been two weeks since Johanna failed the test, but it's as if it never happened. She shrugs it off as if she meant to fail. Part of a coping mechanism I suppose.

And during these two weeks training has just gotten harder and harder. I push myself as far as my body will let me, sometimes farther. I know deep down I will never be as in shape as I was before the games, but I keep pushing.

Peeta's prehijacking seems to be getting worse, something he's neglected to tell me.

"I didn't see the point!" he says, hurriedly trying to catch up with me. I'm in no mood to deal with him.

"Katniss," he says exasperated. He grabs my arms and makes me look at him. "I'm fine really. I promise." He tries to assure me by flashing a lopsided grin at me… which works. I sigh and slow my pace so he can keep up.

"I'm just worried about you is all…I do care a lot you know." I mumble, afraid to admit it.

"What? I'm sorry, didn't catch that. Could you say it again?" He asks, giving me a grin and a wink. I shove his arm slightly which makes him nudge me back. Which leads to me doing the same…

Until finally he's chasing me down empty hallways. I nearly scream in pure terror when he grabs my waist.

"Gotcha." He whispers in my ear. I can hear the smile in his voice.

"Now that you've got me, what are you going to do with me?" I whisper back, repeating his words said almost two years ago.

I feel his arms tense around my waist. "I said that in our interview, real or not real?"

Confused I answer his question. "Real." I feel his arms relax and him release a breath against my neck. We stay like that for a few minutes, him holding my waist and me leaning against him. He buries his head in my hair and hums, kissing my head every so often. I feel him loosen his grip and he steps back from me. I turn and meet his eyes. Giving me a half smile, he brushes hair out of my face. I can't help it, I brush my hand against his cheek, stand on my tiptoes, and kiss him. It's a quick kiss, but it still leaves me wanting more.

"Where were you headed to?" He asks me as we pull apart.


"When you were trying to avoid me… where were you going?"

"Oh, yeah. Follow me." I grab his hand and lead him down more hallways and empty rooms. We walk with a pleasant silence around us. Just enjoying the other's presence.

He's the one to break the silence. "How much longer? My legs hurts." He whines, pulling me closer. I roll my eyes and open the final door.

"This is the only hiding spot they haven't found… so don't tell anyone." I whisper, giving him a pointed look.

"And who exactly would I tell?" I give him another look. "Okay, okay, fine. I promise." I swing the door open and walk inside.

"Katniss, I can't see a damn thing." Peeta whispers. I roll my eyes again and flip on the light switch. The lights from above cast a dull yellow glow on the room.

"Is this…?"


"But… I didn't think these were actually around anymore. I thought the capitol burned down the last of them."

"This is the last one I suppose. And it's pretty amazing, all these books. So many things we don't even know, Peeta. So much we're not told."

"Ancient history." He whispers, his fingers running down spines of all the old books. Dust seems to cloud and form above us, but neither of us cares at this moment.

He pulls a book from the shelf. "The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe." He reads the title aloud.

"Read me something." I whisper, sitting down on a chair. As I sit a cloud of dust erupts from the chair, leaving me coughing. Peeta laughs at my misfortune and sits in the chair next to mine. He flips the book open to a random page. I look around the abandoned forgotten library, wondering how a government could withhold so much information. Thousands upon thousands of words we're never allowed to read.

"This one's called Annabel Lee." He clears his throat and begins.

"It was many and many a year ago, in a kingdom by the sea, that a maiden there lived whom you may know by the name of Annabel Lee. And this maiden she lived with no other thought than to love and be loved by me."

I was a child and she was a child, in this kingdom by the sea; but we loved with a love that was more than love-I and my Annabel Lee; with a love that the winged seraphs of heaven coveted her and me. And this was the reason that, long ago, in this kingdom by the sea, a wind blew out of a cloud, chilling my beautiful Annabel Lee; so that her highborn kinsman came and bore her away from me, to shut her up in a sepulchre in this kingdom by the sea. The angels, not half so happy in heaven, went envying her and me- Yes! - That was the reason, as all men know,

In this kingdom by the sea." He stops reading and skims the rest of the poem. He frowns and sighs.

"I knew it." He whispers. I'm confused, not exactly following the old English. But the words impress me nonetheless. He continues to read

"That the wind came out of the cloud by night, chilling and killing my Annabel Lee." And then the poem makes sense to me. The sorrow of the author, pours into the cracks in my confusion."

"But our love it was stronger by far than the love, of those who were older than we- of many far wiser than we- and neither the angels in heaven above, nor the demons down under the sea, can ever dissever my soul from the soul of the beautiful Annabel Lee." Peeta smiles lightly and glances up at me. I can't help but smile at the small gesture.

"For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams of the beautiful Annabel Lee; and the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes of the beautiful Annabel Lee; and so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side of my darling- my darling- my life and my bride, in the sepulchre there by the sea." He pauses and takes in a breath.

Softly he reads the last line. "In her tomb by the sounding sea." We sit in silence processing what he just read. I stand and sit in his lamp, his arms encircle my waist.

Resting my forehead on his, I smile. I kiss his nose, causing him to grin at me. And then he leans in. Our lips meet and I can't help but smile. And then a thought betrays me.

I can't believe you're smiling while she lays dead.

I pull away from Peeta quickly, my eyes wide. My breathing become short and clipped. My fingernails dig into Peeta's arm. A worried look washes over his face and he holds me tighter.

"Shhh. It's okay. I promise, it's okay."

"No it's not!" I shriek at him. "She's gone! She's never coming back!" I hit his shoulder over and over, screaming and sobbing.

He lets me hit him and when I fall into his shoulder, he rubs my back; drawing shapes. He whispers soft words of reassurance and peppers my face with soft small kisses. When I've cried myself out, I pull away from his shoulder.

He wipes stray tears and kisses my forehead. "You okay now?"

"Yeah, sorry about your shirt." I say, gesturing to his tear soaked shoulder. "And your shoulder…" I add sheepishly.

"Don't worry about it," He says, offering me a smile, showing his perfect white teeth. "As long as you're alright." I hug him, my arms wrapping around his neck. He rests his head in the crook of my neck.

I hum softly and stroke his blond hair. My head resting on the chair. I hum the valley song a feel him smile.

"The Valley Song," he says, pulling away, smiling at me. "You should sing for me." I shake my head, continuing to hum. My fingers playing with his.

"Please?" I shake my head again and he sighs. "Fine but you owe me a song."

"Fair enough." I suppose that's good enough for him because he rests his head back down.

A comfortable silence surrounds over us and everything is peaceful. I can't help but close my eyes, completely content.

A few minutes later he breaks the silence. "Katniss?"

"Hm?" I don't open my eyes, waiting for the question.

"Did you love Gale during our first games?" This question makes my eyes flash open.

"Why are you asking?"

"Because, they showed me a video… in the cave, when I was sleeping… you were crying for Gale." I furrow my eyebrows in confusion, knowing for a fact that never happened.

"That never happened, and besides it wouldn't really sell the whole star-crossed lovers bit, now would it?" I tell him, trying to be reassuring. I hold his hand and run my thumb over his knuckles, trying to soothe his headache, which I know he has.

"Yeah," He says, not meeting my eyes. "Suppose not." He bites his lip and braves a glance at me. I offer a smile, which he returns half-heartedly.

"To answer your question," I start "No, I wasn't in love with Gale and I never will be. I love him as a brother, nothing more."

"Okay," he whispers. "Katniss, I'm confused. Some memories I'm sure of, others I'm not. And I… I don't know anymore. It makes my head pound and my stomach hurt and I don't know whether to rip my eyes out of their sockets or smash my skull in" This confession, seems to be hard for him to admit. Peeta, wanting so bad to be strong, to be someone I can lean on.

"Please don't do any of those," I say, "You're a painter. You're a baker. You like to sleep with the windows open. You never take sugar in your tea. And you always double-knot your shoelaces." The words flow from my mouth without warning.

He gives me a look I can't place exactly, causing me to look down sheepishly. He tilts my chin up to look at him. I'm met with a lopsided grin.

"You have a remarkable memory." He teases, pecking my cheek.

"Yes, well, what can I say? I started paying attention." Another lopsided grin. He continues to tease me.

Lowering his voice, and putting on a serious face, he says, "It's not like I had much competition."

"You never have competition anywhere," I tease back, and this time it's me who leans in, locking our lips. I feel him smile in the kiss as his hands grip my waist securely. My hands go from his neck, to his face, to his hair; tangling themselves in his blond locks. We pull apart and lock eyes.

And then the words tumble out. Words I don't say often, words he needs to hear.

"I love you."

Wow okay. So that was just a fluffy chapter to kind of make up for not really being here… ehehehe. Sorry about that. (: I honestly have no idea where I'm going with this story to be perfectly honest.

I was thinking potential sequel, but who the hell knows at this point. Don't forget to review! It means the world to me (:

The poem in this was "Annabel Lee" by my favorite poet right now, Edgar Allan Poe.