*Hesitantly creeps out of corner*

Hi there! I uhm, have no idea why I'm doing this. I'm seriously intimidated by the standard of some of the authors writing on here, my own pales in comparison to there's - but, I'm going to give this a shot. I've never wrote a fanfic before, bar one which turned out disastrous, so please bear with me. *hides*

This is obviously a Peeta/Cato fanfic, so you don't like that sort of thing, feel free to leave now. But I will be including a few other pairings as well like Katniss/Gale, Finnick/Annie and a few more. OC's are going to be included as well, but not often.

Oh and Cato won't make an appearance for a few chapters yet - sorry, but the build-up is necessary here.

... I think that's all I have to say. Oh and a HUGE virtual hug for WholeWheatWaffles for giving me a big boost of confidence and convincing me to post this. *hugs* Thank you! :3

'Tis all I have to say for now. I hope you enjoy it! Even if it is only a little. Reviews will be very much appreciated, and those who do will get a Peeta with icing, sprinkles, and a cherry on top. Tempting, no?

Disclaimer: Aw, come on. If I owned The Hunger Games, do you really think I'd be writing a Fan fiction about it? Sighs. Well, I don't own the characters, 'cept any OC's that will be mentioned, and the plotline is courtesy of yours truly, just based on the trilogy by Suzanne Collins.


*Goes back to corner*

Chapter 1 - New start, right?

The sunset fades from the horizon, as it gradually began it's descent towards slumber. I believed it to be one of the most magnificent sights anyone could ever behold; the combination of shades of yellow, orange, soft pink and red were all blended together, creating a soft and alluring atmosphere to anyone who happened to glance in its direction - It was both enchanting and captivating. To think, such a mesmerizing sight was ignored daily, despite it being present every single day, almost seemed ludicrous when looking at it now. True beauty left in the dark. As if anticipated, the life-giving orb says it's fond goodbyes, as it disappears into nonexistence - allowing the blanket of night to reign once more until it was needed in the early hours of the morning. I sigh, resignation evidently coating my tone of voice. It was times like this I was able to forget, which was hard to come by nowadays.

"Pita bread! I found you!" I hear the playful familiar voice of my younger brother call out to me. I roll my eyes at the nickname. It was no suprise that I was named after bread, being born into a family who's life practically revolved around it - but still, it didn't do me any favours. He got the nickname when one of my friends as a kid, Delly, visited our Bakery for the first time, and she had politely asked for my name some time in between her bubbly outbursts. I told her that my name was Peeta, to which she replied with 'Peter?' I corrected her on her mistake, stating I was named after the bread. Bad move. 'Oh I love Pita Bread! It's one of my favourites! Well, alongside Focaccia and Wheat. But don't worry Pita Bread, you're my favourite!' She giggled hysterically after saying this, acting like it was the funniest thing she had heard in her life - to be fair, it probably was. It was just my luck that a four-year old Reece happened to be present in the same room and overheard the entire conversation. At that age, he repeated everything he heard, and now, at the tender age of 9, he still hasn't stopped calling me it.

"Well, Reece, it wouldn't have been a very good hiding place considering I'm sat in the middle of the living room, now would it?" I reply amused. He was so full of life and energy that he no doubt got from my mother.

"Well," He repeats the term whilst leaning towards my ear, whispering in a conspirational tone as if he was going to tell me a huge secret he didn't want anyone else to hear. 'That's your fault for not finding a better hiding spot then, isn't it?' He confidently states that shows he was clearly proud of his response.

"Take that back." I warningly threaten in a light tone, "Or I'll take drastic measures."
"Yeah, right. I'd like to see you try' A smug smirk surrounds his childlike features as he questions my authority. Alright then, two can play at this game.

"Stop! Stop it Pita!" He giggles breathlessly as I tickle him mercilessly on his sides - he was most sensitive there.
"Do you admit defeat then?" I retort, raising my eyebrow and waiting for him to back down.
"Never, Never Pita!" It looked like he was being possessed from the way he was practically rolling around on the floor in fits of giggles, halfheartedly batting my hands away in an attempt to stop my ministrations.

"Fine then," Dramatically, I sigh as if to make out I was upset, and cross my arms and pout as he so oftenly did when he didn't get his way.
"Peeta... Peeta, don't be mad. I was only playing with you." He nudges my shoulder to grab my attention, but I only huff in response and purposely looked in the other direction.

"Peeta! I'm sorry, please! I'll let you play with Coco if you want!" He desperately compromises to win me over - at that, I had to fight back a smile at him offering me some time with his one-eyed teddy bear that was literally falling to pieces. He was just too cute.

"Alright, alright. I suppose I could forgive you. But on one condition."
"What?" He replies wide-eyed, reminiscent of a deer caught in headlights.
"You... Have to give Coco to charity." I finish, waiting to see his response.

Wearily, he pauses, as if contemplating on whether I was joking, but upon seeing the seriousness etched onto my face, the sudden realisation of what I was asking begins to dawn on him.
"W-What?... I have to say goodbye to Coco?" He cries, his bottom lip trembling at the mere thought and his vibrant blue eyes clouding over as if he was about to burst into tears at any moment now. "I c-can't do that! I-I..." I couldn't stand seeing him upset, so I immediately drop the act and put his mind at ease.

"Reece, Reece! Relax, I wouldn't make you do that." I coo softly in his ear, reassuringly rubbing my hand up and down his back to comfort him in his current state of distress.
"Y-You sure?"
"Yes I'm sure you daft thing. I was only playing with you." I smugly reply, repeating his words from earlier. At that, he fights back his sniffles and a beaming smile lights up his face; even his smile was the same as my mothers - He is the splitting image of her.

Shame they never got to meet.

I shake my head at the thought, refusing to let my thoughts get the better of me in front of Reece. Later. Later.

"There's one more box left in the back of the van, it's just got some silverware and cutlery in it, mind bringing it in for me? My arms are aching me rotten - reckon old age is catching up with me!"

"Yeah, sure. Whatever." I mutter in response, the awkwardness of this whole situation was not lost on me; we both knew it, it was choking, almost. There was a big fat elephant in the room and neither of us decided to, or wanted to address it. Some things are best left unsaid. Yet so much has already been said and done, how can we move on? Just shove it under the rug like it never happened? Live in a pretence where I didn't get put into a coma by the woman he married, to replace my mother? Just like we did with mom's death?

My thoughts were jumbled in my head, and I wanted so badly to form a swift and coherent reply which would grant me the escape that I so desperately crave; yet my thought process seemed incapable from doing so. By the time I was about to make a quick exit, I felt a large and rough hand place itself on my shoulder. I instinctively tense. The gesture was meant to be comforting, but instead, it was intimidating, and like how a stranger would address a passerby that dropped something on the street.

"Son, she's gone now. She ain't gonna be able to hurt you no more. We can have a new start, right?" My father hopefully asked, anticipating my response to be positive. Thing is, I didn't even know myself if I could grant him that. Not when he sat back and allowed that brute of a woman to beat me; To break me down, both physically and mentally. For years I tolerated the abuse hurtled at me, until last year, when I finally stood up for myself. I fought back. It was a long time coming, but it only infuriated that spiteful woman even more so, leaving me in a coma after she brutally assaulted me.

Only then did he come to his senses and realise my predicament, only then did he decide to flee our home as soon as I had recovered - making a swift getaway before she noticed. Only then. But am I just holding grudges? Or should I just forgive and forget?"

"Yeah, dad. I know. We'll be alright, just need some time, y'know? Get my life back on track. We'll get there." I conjure up the most enthusiastic response I could, but thankfully, his reaction told me I made the right decision, saying things words would never be able to express.

"Good.. Great! That's.. Uhm, great to hear son. I'm glad." He replies earnestly, the gratitude he felt for me not begrudging him palpable. I knew now from recognizing the relief and thankfulness on his aged features, that he did feel guilty for doing nothing, for allowing me to be a victim in my own home - but he wanted to move forward from that. New place, new start - right? And how could I deny him that? "Well I've got some unpacking to do, so I'll just leave you to it?" It almost seemed like he was asking for permission to do so.

"Alright, yeah, okay." I enthuse probably a little too quickly. We may have moved forward, but the awkward tension between us hadn't fully dispersed yet. Given time, I actually felt hopeful for once that it would.

With a pat on the back, and a genuine smile that left me feeling optimistic about getting our relationship back on track, he left me to my own thoughts.

"Dad?" Hesitantly, I call out, and turned around to meet his expecting eyes curiously looking back at me in suprise. "Yeah, son?"

"... Thanks." My voice as sincere as my words, and I allow an honest smile to form on my face upon seeing his eyes light up at the mere mention of that one word; one word, with so many implications.

Now rejuvenated and with a lasting smile on his face, he proceeds to enter our new home - new home, new place, new start, I tell myself confidently. No one knew my story here; I could start afresh with everyone none the wiser. The thought alone cheered me up tenfold, beginning to feel a spark of hope ignite inside of me.

... Then I realize tomorrow was my first day of high school here. And I didn't know any of the students, nor where the hell the school was even located.


... And there you have it. :3 I thought it would turn out a lot better than it actually did :l Oh wellz. It's only the first chapter, so there's plenty of room for improvement, right? Reviews mean the world to me, so please take a minute to let me know what you thought, even if it is just a few words - it's all appreciated.

Constructive criticism is greatly appreciated - Flaming will not be tolerated. I haven't got a Beta, so I'm solely relying on Spellcheck, and I've had no experience whatsoever writing anything, to be frank. I'm still unsure of this story, I haven't got any confidence in my writing at all, so I'm just hoping for the best. :S I guess we'll see how it goes.

Thanks guys for reading! See you in the next chapter? :)