Katniss held the crying infant with a gentle ease. "My sweet princess." Katniss laughed at this, "No you really aren't a princess are you Scarlet Viviane? You're more of a warrior. You're my little fighter."
With her last bit of energy she pulled herself out of bed and pulled down the covers of the bed. She pulled off her night-dress to clean her daughter and then crawled back into the bed to cover the both of them.
The baby stopped crying and only looked lazily at her mother. "I don't think grandma would have ever let her granddaughter die. No. Grandma was always taking care of you Scarlet. I love you so much Scarlet... Mom was right when she picked that name for you baby. Viviane means alive. She would have never let you." Katniss cried now thinking about her mother taking care of her little girl.
"My precious child." She kisses the baby, "I love you so much Scarlet Viviane."
Katniss fell asleep with the infant on her chest. She awoke some hours later to the desperate hungry cries of her child.
Recognizing the cry immediately she adjusted the baby for nursing before she notices the change in her atmosphere.
Her eyes danced across the white linoleum walls. Her little girl was wrapped in pink blankets and she herself was wearing a hospital gown.
She wasn't sleeping in the blood stained bed she had been in when she was last conscious.
Her baby still cried so she moved the little girl into a position to feed before observing anything else.
This didn't feel right, where was she?
"Lieutenant?" A voice came from the door. She didn't know why she had expected her regiment to stand in the door but she did expect them. Instead stood a doctor, but he didn't look like other doctors.
He looked hurt and wounded. From war maybe?
"Glad to see you awake" He faked a smile as he read her chart. "It seems everything is in order."
"We moved you up to the hospital ward here in district Thirteen." He seemed to gulp as if nervous.
"Really?" She asked in a way that instated her authority.
"They why can't you have eye contact with me?" She asked. He looked down nervously. "Where am I?"
"Doctor, where am I?"
"The Capitol ma'am"
"... To be quite frank ma'am. Because your husband requested it."
"Your husband was concerned when he first found you after the birth of your daughter. He was convinced the baby was dead. So when we loaded those boys up we took you along with us-"
"I'm getting to that, they're the whole reason I came... As I was saying sometimes women tend to self diagnose which we believe you did. No offense."
"None taken." She said in a sour tone.
"We believe what happened was... Well, to start off, your baby is only five pounds three ounces which is under the weight a full term baby should be." Katniss looked down at her child. She hadn't noticed quite how small Scarlet was.
"We believe your child had Intrauterine growth restriction, or IUGR which is when the baby is under developed and that is the cause as to why your daughter did not kick much during the end of your pregnancy. Babies who have this normally have stressed mothers which is another reason for this diagnosis."
She again looked at her baby, her sweet child was so small compared to her brother and sister. How had she not taken notice of that?
"We believe the reason behind your bleeding was due to Placental Abrupsion, which is when the placenta detaches from the uterain wall.
"This is especial common in women who have had children already, though it is extremely rare. This is also common in women who have received trauma or injury to their stomachs which is an understatment to how you've abused your body during this pregnancy." He was laughing at this.
"How so?" She asked.
"Well two battles both landing on your stomach, apendectal surgery, stress beyond words, handling weaponry alone is dangerous for a woman during pregnancy, and to top it all off you just so happened to be walking all day every day for a few good months if we were to crunch the amount of time together.
"You're any gynecologist's nightmare... My point is your little girl should be dead. She should have died to moment you fired your first gun while pregnant."
Katniss looked down at her child and kissed Scarlets head, "So the Placental Abrupsion led to your lengthened labor, which took a total of three days am I correct?"
"Yes sadly." She nodded.
"And as you can see your child is fairly under weight which is more manageable than most birth defects. Your husband walked into a room with a woman asleep with a clearly under weight baby and blood on the sheets and floor. I can't blame him for is concern."
"Neither can I" Katniss scoffed lightly, "I am going to give that man a heart attack some day."
The doctor laughed at this before continuing, "You requested we attempt to get those chips out of the brains of those boys. The Capitol had fully prepared for the children. We had gone to pick them up, when one of the little boys, Bram I believe, asked where you were. Then your husband found us, convinced us to take you, and here we are."
"Long story." She nodded.
"Yes and now I have been asked to have you come with me."
"You are the closest thing those boys have to family and we have a few papers for you to sign as well. I can take you to them if you like."
She nodded and lifted Scarlet higher in her arms. He exited to get a wheel chair.
"Scarlet did you hear that? You are a miracle. You shouldn't be here but you are." Katniss kissed Scarlet before the doctor returned.
He wheeled her into a dim ICU room.
"Why is it dark?" She asked bouncing her daughter.
"Brain surgery can sometimes have side effects that make them sensitive to light, this is just a precaution."
She nodded, he put some papers on the table in the room, "I'll leave you." He said backing out of the room.
Cradling her daughter she gingerly placed one hand on Brams. "Sleep looks good on you Bram" She laughed. She wanted to ruffle his blond straight hair so he looked more like himself. "You get better. That's all you have to do okay? Get better for me, and everything will be okay."
She promised before signing the papers the doctor had left her. All the while she held Scarlet close to her.
James moved a bit startling Katniss slightly.
He groaned before Katniss moved to him, "James?" She whispered, "It's me Katniss."
"Huh?" He asked opening his pale blue eyes widely. He blinked away the anesthetic.
"James it's me Katniss," She took his cool rough hand in hers.
"Katniss?" He asked.
"We're in the Capitol. The doctors here got your chips out of your brains. You and Bram are free."
"... Can I have some water?" She smiled and pushed his hair back out of his eyes.
"I'll see what I can do." She nodded leaving his side and exiting the room. She told a nurse who got her a pitcher of water. "Here James." She handed him the drink. "Are you in any pain?" He shook his head slightly. "Do you need anything?"
He shook his head but then looked at Scarlet in her arms. "Huh?"
"I had a baby." She laughed, "Her name is Scarlet"
He nodded sipping on his water, "... You..." He looked at her with tears brimming in his eyes.
"What is it James?"
"You... You just... Remind me of my sister." He let tears fall down his cheeks, "My sister Sara took me and my sisters in when mama was grieving over papa... She took care of me even though she had a new-born. She sang me to sleep some nights when I was afraid..."
Katniss began to brush his hair back with her fingers again, "It's okay James."
"She's dead now... They're all dead."
"No they're not. Look right next to you." He shifted slightly, "Bram is still here, and I'm willing to bet that Lacey had the wit to keep herself alive."
He looked at her, "What did Bram tell you about her?"
"He said where you came from women could only be two things, 'idiots and mothers' " James chuckled at this, "But he said one girl didn't fit that mold, and that was Lacey. She was a true friend and second only to you. Something he always noticed was that she had an air about her. A presence if you will, that she created for herself. She was good at keeping promises, sneaking around, and be amazing at everything ever."
James spoke up, "I remember her saying something along those lines."
"He said she was in need of a challenge?"
"She was always smarter than Bram and I combined. And we were top in our class. She taught me beginners Trig and such. She was good."
"She told off the heads you know."
James looked at her with his pale happy eyes, "I would have expected her to try."
"She was very brave, no matter what her and Bram went through. Your friends were extremely brave. She let him go for his mother."
He nodded sadly, "Look what good that did."
Listen James, all of those things did happen no one can deny that. But now you have to become your own person okay?"
James nodded, "Where are my things?" He asked, "I men the clothes I wore here."
"I'm not sure, why?"
"I have a picture of her. I want to see her." He stated slowly. Katniss went to the dresser bouncing Scarlet Viviane with each step. She searches the drawers and finds a picture of a girl, a red-head with freckled cheeks and warm brown eyes. Her hair was in waves as it hits her smiling cheeks.
She looks so innocent so small. "Is this her?" Katniss asked holding the picture in front of him.
He smiled and nodded. "She's adorable." Katniss chuckled. He nodded as she sat down and handed him the photo. I like to think she's still alive like you say Katniss... But she doesn't know when she's said too much."
"You sometimes just have to hope with all your heart."
Just then a groan came from Bram's bed, "Sonni?" James asked.
Bram blinked opening his green eyes, his own lovely green eyes, "Kanni?" He asked quietly, "You're awake."
"Yeah." James smiled, "I have been for a while now."
"Welcome back Bram." Katniss moved to his bed and took his hand.
"Katniss?" He looked at her, "You're awake too?"
"Yes." She nodded.
"And Scarlet Viviane is alive I see." He laughed.
"Yes." She nodded looking at the little girl who was looking around the room.
"Sonni, I have something I want you to see." James said suddenly. "Katniss" He handed her the photo of Lacey.
She handed it off to Bram who looked at it in awe, "I tried James, I really did. I tried to keep her safe for you." he said disappointed.
"I wouldn't blame you if she... I wouldn't blame you Sonni."
"If you don't mind my asking what are you calling each other?"
Bram laughed lightly, "He calls me Sonni which means Bull in Finnish which is our first language. They require we learn English in school so our parents just teach us Finnish, and English. We learn Hebrew in temple."
"Trilingual are we?" Katniss asked.
"Not really, " James spoke up, "We can read Hebrew but I'd make a mockery of the language speaking it."
"I call him Kanni which means Rabbit in English. It kind of stuck when we first met." Bram finished explaining.
Scarlet began to make a fuss in Katniss's arms. "Shh Scarlet these boys need quite honey." She tried to sooth the infant. She ended up leaving the room to feed her baby.
As she lay in her own bed she began to think about her family. What happened to all of them?
Where were her children and husband? What was happening on the war front?
She didn't know and was rather afraid to find out when President Paylor stepped in the room.
"Hello Katniss" She greeted, "I'm in need of your assistance... It involves a suicide mission. And as a matter of fact is part of your specialty."
"Suicide?" Katniss asked, Paylor nodded, "Tell me everything."
You guys... Holy crap sixty follows... I'm so happy! I hope you enjoyed this because the best is yet to come! There will be horror, gore, and a crazy rescue mission! I'll see you Saturday and as always Stay lovely!