I sit on the sterile white bench in District 13's hospital, waiting for injured soldiers to be rushed back. However, not one soldier ever appears. I clasp my hands tightly together, twiddling my thumbs, praying for Katniss' safety. I don't lessen my grip until my knuckles and the tips of my fingers are white from the pressure.
I don't want to - don't need to have this happen again. My big sister has already risked her life for me once by volunteering in the games, and has come to multiple near death experiences in her second games. I cannot allow anything to happen to her again. Her years of protecting me are over, now it's time for me to protect her the way that she never has been protected after our father's tragic death.
The sound of feet smacking against the cement floor and a clattering sound as something falls to the ground breaks me from my thoughts.
My mother rushes in through the hospital doors urgently, running towards the television. She presses the power button and the television flickers to life. The Capitol Seal appears on the screen and then a news reporter does as well. She begins to speak of the recent deaths in the Capitol, and then the screen blooms with images of war. People are being blown to bits, with ligament after ligament soaring through the smoke-filled air.
Then Peeta is on the screen, with a vicious look in his eye. He tackles Katniss to the ground and I wince, sharing my sister's pain.
"No! No! Peeta don't! Someone stop him! He'll kill her!" I find myself screaming ferociously at the television as Peeta pulls back his lips in a deranged snarl.
He is about to sink his teeth into her skin, when a man of whom I don't know the name is pulling Peeta off of Katniss, protecting her. I let out a small sigh of relief, just as Peeta throws the man off of him and he lands on the pod. The barb wire net is making the poor man bleed, and I begin to sob.
Now, we will never be able to repay that poor man. I hold my hands together tightly, once again, and send a silent 'thank you' to the saviour of my sister. The news reporter is back on the screen with a gleeful smile, and I am bewildered by her joy, when so many painful events have just occurred.
I realize that this is not the worst to come, just as the reporter is speaking and the camera is on the live feed. Peacekeepers are surrounding the home that Katniss, Peeta, Gale, Finnick, Jackson and some of the camera crew just went in for safety from the blackness. The peacekeepers blow the house to bits, allowing the walls to collapse, so that if they were not effectively killed by the bombs, they would be killed by smoke filled lungs, or pieces of broken wood falling on them.
The reporter announces that a man named Boggs, Finnick, Gale, Peeta and a few others are dead. Then an image of Katniss comes on. Bright, burning words engulf the screen. They read, "The Mockingjay Has Fallen".
With those four words, my whole world comes tumbling down. Tears spill over my eyes and stream down my face as I collapse to the floor. My mother is completely still. Frozen in time. She has that distant and haunted look in her eyes that she has possessed ever since the death of my father. I am lying on the floor limp and helpless, when they come for me. Four soldiers from 13 come into the hospital room and two peel my lifeless body off of the floor.
A puddle is all that is left of where I sobbed for what seemed like hours. My mother's statue-like body is taken as well. A needle is put into my arm and I am out. I dream a hazy nightmare of Katniss, fighting for her life. She is protecting Gale from an incoming Peacekeeper, when it happens. My brave and talented sister is blown to bits by a bomb. The fiery flames lick her entire body, roasting her like a marshmallow. But the middle is not the white and gooey deliciousness that it is when the outside of a marshmallow is burnt. No, Katniss' inside is blackened, burnt to a crisp.
Nothing is left of my courageous sister. Nothing but a roasted Mockingjay shell.
When I wake, President Coin is at my bedside. She speaks, but I do not hear. She shows me the news, but I do not see. She offers me food, but I do not eat. She becomes frustrated and hits me, but I do not feel. I am a lifeless being, somehow still managing to breathe in and out.
One day Rory comes in and sits on the edge of my hospital bed, gently stroking my blonde hair. Rory and I have become so close that we are basically dating, though we keep it a secret. I see and hear him, not because I love him, which I do, but mostly because he is the only one who understands this heart-wrenching feeling. I don't resist when he lays beside me and wraps his warm arms around me. Rory's kindness and compassion does not make me come out of my metaphorical coma, though. Eventually, he stops coming, and I decide he has given up on me, or given in to the darkness eroding his heart and soul.
I lay on the bed for days, without eating, drinking or going to the bathroom. I assure myself that soon I will be nothing, even if they pump all of their supplies into me, I will never hear, see, eat or feel again. You cannot merely keep a person going on medicine. Not when they have lost the will to live.
Finally, they unplug the medicine and leave me in peace. But not for long, my peace is interrupted by a soft purr and an occasional meow. Buttercup rubs his soft, beautiful fur against my hallow, emotionless face. I begin to stroke Buttercup, realizing that even though I have lost my sister, I still need to protect and take care of the only person left in the world who could use my help. Thinking about all of the people in the world who need me, slowly but surely, helps me come back to life.
I practically jump off of the hospital bed, seeking President Coin. I find her almost instantly, probably waiting for me to come around. I screech to a stop, forcing her tired but authoritative eyes to stare into mine.
"I want to go help," I say fiercely.
"Impossible, you don't have nearly enough training," she says as she rolls her eyes.
"People need me!" I insist, but she doesn't listen. She turns on her heel, preparing to walk away.
"I don't want to fight, I want to be a medic," I state as I turn her back around to face me.
She pauses slightly for a moment, probably thinking. Finally, she says, "Find a team of medics to enter the extremely dangerous war, and I will send you out there on the next flight."
"Fine," I spit as I grind my teeth together. She has not even the slightest bit of hope in me.
I head back to the hospital to gather my things and talk to a few doctors and nurses.
The news is still on the screen and I watch, hearing every word.
There are people digging in the remains of the house that the Capitol bombed in order to rid Panem of the Mockingjay. However, they only find one body. They find the man named Boggs under the collapsed house. So, that means, Katniss is still alive. Katniss is still alive! My sister is still alive! My once motionless body is now bursting with energy because of the good news.
I bolt up the seven flights of stairs to the Hawthorne's living quarters. I knock persistently until Posy opens the door, looking sad, lonely, and depressed - which is scary for a child of such a young age. I kneel to the ground and hug her tightly, telling her that it's all right.
"Posy," I whisper with a smile creeping on my lips, "Gale is still alive."
I dress in the nurse's outfit that they have given me, although it is a few sizes too big. My mother pins it to make it stay, which reminds me all too much of my first reaping day. She ties back my hair in a regular braid down my back and we prepare to leave.
The long hovercraft ride is painful and torturous. I have never been more bored in my entire life. I sit in a quite comfortable chair next to my mother, across from two of the twenty eight other medics who will be assisting us. My mother speaks with one lady, Dr. Fazuma, about treating burns and tying tourniquets. I just sit staring out the window as the blurred world zooms by.
Nothing further on Katniss has been put on television and I can only hope that she has made it to safety. Before we left, Beetee had explained a technique that the rebels are now using. They wire cars so that the rebels can control them, and they send them flying down the street setting off numerous pods. Hopefully, this will clear the street of pods so that the rebels will not be killed.
I'm not sure how well that will pan out, but it is not for me to worry about. Now, I must prepare for all of the blood and gore that I will be forced to deal with. The poor people who are dying and in pain, and I must come to their aid. Because that's what I do, help people.
We finally land, and the frightening world around me is nearly unbearable. We are near the President's mansion, where we assume most of the injured people will be. Capitol citizens, rebels, peacekeepers. Everyone is frantic, running around and killing each other. It is horrific.
We are aiding to those who need us desperately, not caring who's side they are on, when the bomb goes off.