A/N: A look into what could have really happened behind the high Capitol walls to Peeta, with a personal appearance from President Snow

I do not own anything involving The Hunger Games, though I think you probably could have guessed that.

Chapter 1

All I can hear is the slow drip of the water around me, and the small noises of the few prisoners around me. Johanna is finally quieting down, though I can still hear small whimpers coming from her side of the dank chamber.

The darkness is all but drowning – add to it the sheer wetness of the place, and I can barely tell where the stone begins and the water ends. Everything is slippery and soaked, and I try not to think about what I'm actually sitting in.

I jerk away from the doors as they open. The rust seems to grate on my very bones as the thick metal gives way to the guards. Dim light seems to almost cut at my eyes as I try to cower away, but I know there's no use – the shackles may be primitive for the Capitol, but they're effective. I want to close my eyes to shield them away from the low yet shocking light, but at the same time I know I have to be alert. I have to be diligent; I have to be aware of what they're doing. If they get too far into me, I know I won't be able to take it, and I need to be able to take it, for Katniss, for our district, for everything we've fought for.

The footsteps are louder than I remember them being last time. The memories of the last visit make me flinch, even though I'm so tired I never want to move again. The darkness has encompassed me for so long; it's strange seeing my own arms, my own legs in front of me, at odd angles on the floor.

The footsteps stop in front of me. It takes all my energy just to roll my neck so my face is once again in the dark, my eyes able to start adjusting to the new light. I can see the outline of two peacekeepers' armor, but their faces were darkness compared to the light streaming behind them.

It's the man in the middle, though, that gets my starving, bleeding, unfocused attention. I can't see his face, or his white hair, puffed out lips or Capitol attire, but the smell hits me even before he begins speaking.

It is blood and it is roses and it is death and slavery and charisma and damnation.

It is President Snow, and he has come for me.