Author's note. I'm not really sure about myself . It was a complicated chapter , and I hope Peeta is not too much OOC. I hope you will enjoy it.
I'm playing with cards. They gave me a set when I asked for it. I even played with a peacemaker yesterday. They are treating me very well. I have to confess that I do everything to make sure they can trust me. I'm laughing with them, bring old memories from the 74th hunger games I won. I lied every day and do not forget to play the heartbroken guy who had been betrayed by the girl he loves.
Each afternoons, we prepare the interview. Time to time I make a point to not be agree with what they want me to tell, sometimes I argue about this or that even if I never cross a certain line but I m doing it for two reasons.
First : Being too easy with them, to not oppose some resistance will eventually bring them to be suspicious at me. They follow me during two hunger games, they just know who I am.
Two : At the end , after their explanations , I make them believe , they succeed to convince me . I let them think they are in control.
It's scary how good I'm at this. I'm a professional liar and a total fake. I have years of practice behind me. Thanks to my family. I don't know where they are now but I'm not too worried. The mellarks know how to survive. They know how to sell their soul for the better price. When I was a child I often felt like a small red fish swimming in a pool full of sharks. The red fish I am , had to learn the hard way. Eventually I became a true cameleon.
It's probably why I feel almost at home here. But there's a huge difference here. It's easier to be someone else , to play the games when it's not your family. You don't love them. You don't feel any remorse or pain. The burden is not here. The pain of being hurt by their words doesn't exist. I'm on the verge of tears now. Great. I miss them. Something is definetely wrong with me. How can I miss them? After all they did to me ? I still remember my mother 's words to me when she learnt about the 75th hunger games . How mad she was.
" Peeta, I hope you have some common sense to not volunteer if it's Haymitch who is chosen." She yelled.
My first thought was " She can't possibly be worried for me? Right? There's a trick"
"I'll volunteer " I answered.
" I can't believe how selfish you are. What abous us? With your death, we are going to loose all our money…" she started
"My money…The victor's money…" I added with a smirk. I knew there was a trick. I wasn't surprised at all but it seemed I never learned because it still hurt to hear it. But I knew better than to show I had been hurt. Instead I glared at her.
She rolled her eyes. " You know what I mean. We have projects too. A new life, new friends. For once, you were usefull to your family but no, you are so stupidly in love with that Everdeen , you don't even see she is using you ."
"She saved my life " I reminded coldly..
" She saved her honor. I bet she wouldn't have eaten the berries. Only you, are an idiot enough to think she was playing fair. You just got lucky, the gamemaker were very naïve this year"
"Whatever. I'll volunteer " I said and then left the backery without a good bye; Only once at my house, I cried like a child.
I guess without them, I wouldn't be who I am now. Someone able to show the complete opposite of who I really am. Without them, I 'll be like Katniss too easy to read.
The interview was tonight. I feel tense and I'm trying to relax at playing with the cards. I have 3 messages that are important for me to tell
First : tell Katniss, I trust her and I don't feel betrayed.
Second : Tell Katniss to be careful , to think, to not let herself being a pawn. To think about the consequences of a civil war.
Third : To make them understand I'm a prisonneer here .
I' have to choose my words carefully. It must be ambigous enough for the capitol so they won't cut the live and at the same time make sure my messages will be understood. I'll deal later with the consequences . I 'm not a naïve person. I know they are going to punish me for what I'm going to do. There are going to be so angry.
I have to concentrate , tonight I'll have to be confident . I 'll have to be good.
The interview is done. I think I did everyting perfectely. I really happy with myself and I'm not surprised when four peacemarkers arrive to escort me. The president Snow must be furious. We are going to a place I don't know . Obviously, from tonight I'll have a real cell.
The cell was worse than I think. No bed, no sanitary. I sigh. Suddenly I hear Johanna's voice.
" I wondered where you have been all this time" Her voice was weak.
" How are you? I've seen you 've been tortured"
" Yeah, I told them everything, even what I didn't know , at the end… But what I knew had no importance so… it's been days since I have been tortured."
"What about you?"
" I behave like a bad kitty and peed on their carpet, they didn't like it " I laugh. She started to laugh too.
" I hope you won't loose your sense of humor once they will start to torture you " she replies.
There is a silence now.
" I'm so mad at them. How did they dare to abandon us… We had a deal. Haymitch is the worse."
" He probably tried to do his best."
" So It's true… What they said about you"
" What are they saying about me? " I 'm curious. " That you are the best of us all. How ironic is it. They abandon the guy they admire the most."
" I think you are delirious." I don't want to believe what she said becausei it's simply not true. I'm not the best of them all far from that.
"No, even I , I like you. Your funny ,selfless and caring. Your are strong, smart and brave . There'are no victor like you out there "
I shake my head.
" You are so wrong about me" it's true in fact. I'm selfish , I'm a liar, a coward most of the time But I still try to be a better man. To be worth for something
Truth to be told, I crave for love. It's probably why I'm a such good pretender. I can change myself so easily just to feel some love . At the end, I'm even more hurt because this is not love I get. I just show them what I know they will appreaciate so the love I get is just as fake as me.
At school , I had many friends. I made them laugh. I tried to help them with their homework. They like me a lot. But it wasn't really me at the end. Katniss didn't have to be like that to be loved by her family and to be admired by others. She just had to be herself and they love her. They respect her. Like my mother said. She is a survivor that one. When I'm all but a survivor. When I was a child, I cried a lot, I was hyper sensitive. I was day dreaming a lot , I'm still daydreaming a lot, a way to escape the reality. I love to watch flowers and pretty things. I like to draw. I don't like to fight. I can't bear the thought of hurting someone. I feel guilty so easily. I'm always mad at myself for not being someone stronger and better. The real me is so out of place in this world. My mother used to look at me , like I was an error or something. So I had to create someone I'm not. I put a perfect mask. Sometimes I scare myself, afraid to loose who I am inside.
Why is it so hard to be myself in front of the others? Why is it so hard to be loved for who I am. At least , in the arena I was myself with Katniss. I don't know why I can be myself with Katniss. Probably because I trust her : she is a caring person. I know How much she is taking care of her sister. How strong she is for the person she loves. How she decide to feed her family and went to hunt. It was awesome. She litteraly changed my life and make me stronger. She doesn't even know how she changed my life. But I when I saw her , taking responsibility for her family, being so brave , so full of life . I was in awe and started to change . To see life in a different way. I found a way to survive by myself. I found the fake smiles, the lies, I started to wrestle and was hoping secretely one day… I 'll be able to talk to her. To say thank you because I understood a lot of things. Like I had no right to let myself die into the deep shadows when other people had a life that is so much harder than mine and fight for it everyday. I maybe different but I can still try to make my life better and hope ... One day… One day..;
I must have fell asleep during my day dreaming because I m being awaken by the peacemakers.
" Wake up ! The president Snow is waiting for you "