Yay! Finally! An update. Sorry for the wait. Homework and stuff, hopefully some of you can relate. I just want to thank the reviewers, I am sorry I don't reply or anything but I really wish I could acknowledge all of you, in a way, I kinda am. Thank you so much for all the reviews, it's the same one and they are the best readers ever! THANK YOU!
Enjoy this chapter guys and beware of grammar mistake or wrong spellings. Please leave me what you think in the end.
DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN THE HUNGER GAMES!
CHAPTER ELEVEN: NOT FOR YOU...NOT FOR ME
Peeta's breathes tickles my neck and that's when I wake up for the morning. I open my eyes and I'm facing the ceiling with my back on the mattress. Peeta sleeps with his arms around me and his face cramped inside my neck. I turn my body carefully to face him. Some of the band aids on his face aren't sticking properly but I leave them alone.
What am I going to do with Peeta?
He wears his heart on his sleeve even though it's hard to see how he feels. He sleeps peacefully, breathing evenly and he looks safe in his sleep. It's cold and our blanket only go up to our waist and reveals Peeta bare torso. So I grab it and put it around the both of us.
I jump as Effie bangs on our door. "KATNISS! WAKEY WAKEY! WE HAVE A BIG BIG BIG DAY TODAY!"
Peeta starts mumbling because his being disturbed. I turn my head to the door, "Coming Effie!" I yell.
Peeta's eyelids start moving and I stroke his cheek. "Peeta go back to sleep…"
"Katniss…"He mutters tiredly.
"I'm here. Go back to sleep." I say quietly.
He manages to sleep again and I quietly get out of bed. And head to the dining area. District 1 is our stop today. Then we're going to the Capitol tomorrow. I think about what Peeta and I have been going through The Victory Tour. We spend our time fighting, crying, laughing, playing around and trying to find out what's real between the both of us. Hopefully our friendship is; our friendship is one of the things I've learnt to treasure in my life. That has to be real.
"Where is Peeta?" Effie asks.
"Still sleeping…" I answer.
"What was with all the crying last night?" Cinna asks and everyone's eyes gaze on me.
"Must have been a scary one." Haymtich says.
"Who was having the nightmare?" Octavia asks.
"Well obviously it was Katniss. There was crying involved, and girls cry." Flavius says.
"Excuse me! Crying isn't about what gender you are in!" Venia spits at Flavius.
"It's about how strong you are as a person." Octavia says loud and proud.
"It was Peeta." I say quietly.
"HA! See I told you guys that- What? It was Peeta?" Flavius cries.
"Oh dear! Peeta is a big boy; surely a nightmare can't hurt him." Effie gasps.
Effie is right. Peeta is a big boy and nightmares can't hurt him, but it did. Of course it did, it just had to hurt Peeta because the nightmare was about losing me.
"It depends on what the nightmare is about Effie." Haymitch points out.
"Oh! Must have been a bad one!" She cries.
"Yes, very bad." Flavius says quietly.
I stop moving and put my hands in my lap. Everyone continues to eat and I can't make myself move to pick up the spoon and continue eating. I know I'm upset and I should continue eating before they find out what's wrong and try their poor attempts at cheering me up.
"Katniss?" I hear his voice echo through the halls and we hear his familiar loud steps making their way to us.
"I'm here." I say loudly.
Peeta appears; his hair messy, his face with the band aids and he decided to put a shirt on. We wouldn't want Effie to get hyped up if he didn't.
"Katniss, I woke up 'cause you were gone." He says and sits beside me.
"I came to get breakfast." I say and I realise that everyone is staring at him. I find myself doing the same thing and he looks at me. His eyes tired and weary, it looks like he has been crying as well. He grabs a plate and sniffs. I take hold of his hand from under the table to comfort him a little.
Everyone watches his every move. Fascinated by what he might be about to do.
"Are you alright Peeta?" Octavia mumbles.
At first Peeta snaps his head up when he heard his name but I don't think he heard the question.
"Sorry?" He says.
"Are you alright?" Octavia repeats.
"Yes, of course. Why wouldn't I be?" He answers.
"It's just-" She stops when it looks like Venia elbowed her somehow.
Peeta looks at Octavia questioningly and then looks at me. I don't give him any sign of recognition and I turn my head away. Suddenly I don't feel hungry anymore; I pass my plate to Peeta and eh accepts it. I wait for him to finish eating.
"About the fighting last night Peeta, I don't want any more of those to happen. Even though the mayor's son was being rude, you didn't have to hit him." Effie starts.
"I'm so sorry. I didn't mean it, I have no idea what came over me. I just reacted I guess." He says.
"Now, I understand you to shove him but not hit him Peeta. That's just not you." Effie remarks.
"Peeta got drugged last night." I interrupt, "Maybe that's why he reacted the way he did.
"What? I did?" Peeta says confusingly at me.
"Yeah you did," I say slowly, does that mean he doesn't remember anything he said to me last night.
"That explains it. You were madder than usual." Haymitch starts.
"Then you were acting really weird when we got in bed." I say.
Thank God Effie didn't have another complain on our sleeping arrangements.
"I- I don't remember." He says.
"Do you remember crying in the middle of the night?" Fulvia says quickly.
I see Peeta's eyes furrow, "I was- I was crying. Why?"
Maybe the drug didn't wear off that quickly. It might have caused Peeta's nightmare to be much more dreadful than any nightmare he has had. He doesn't even remember it.
In a way I'm glad for Peeta. It's better if he doesn't remember so that he doesn't have to be reminded about his nightmare. So that he doesn't need to fear about losing me because I'm never going away.
"Don't worry about it. You just had a nightmare." I say.
"Yeah you did! You cried because of it." Flavius states.
I see Peeta think a moment then he looks at me. "Must've been about you." He says quietly but everyone else hears.
I put my head down, "I'm not really hungry. I'm going to get cleaned up." I push my chair back and walk to my room. I don't know what came over me; maybe I just don't want to think about it. I'm not trying to be mean, I guess I just need some time for myself I guess.
I take a shower and change into new clothes when I touch the doorknob it opens and I stumble a few steps back. Peeta enters the room looking fresh for the day. He's all showered up and clean. His band aids are off and you can see his cuts. Nothing that make up can't fix when we go to dinner tonight.
"Can I talk to you for a minute?" He asks and his hand lingers on the knob.
"Yeah sure." I nod.
He closes the door behind him. I go and sit on the edge of the bed and I wait for him.
He sits beside me and he I hear him take a breath in.
"Katniss are you okay?" He asks slowly.
I look at him and smile, "Of course I'm okay. Why wouldn't I be?"
"Katniss something's bothering you. What is it?" He moves closer and puts his arm behind me. I bite my lip. "What is it Katniss?" And this time his voice is softer.
"I-I really don't know Peeta. I really don't know." I look into his blue eyes when I mumble the words then I make a stand.
"I'm really confused. I don't know what to think. May- maybe I'm just scared. Because we're nearly home you know and I'm worried ab-about Prim and m-my mother…" I starts stuttering and Peeta looks at me really concerned. He stands up as well and takes hold of both of my hands.
I haven't finished yet, "Maybe it's you…" I say silently. He looks at me and his eyebrows furrow.
"What do you mean?" He asks confusingly.
"Peeta y-you scared the life out of me last night. I was so scared for you and I- I didn't know what to do. Al- all I know is that I didn- didn't want to leave you." I say quickly and then wrap my arms around his neck nice and tightly. He holds me too, wraps his arms around my waist and then kisses my forehead.
"I'm sorry I don't remember Katniss. But, I would do anyth-" He says softly and I interrupt.
"I just don't like seeing you like that. In a way, I'm guilty." I say.
"Don't be. You shouldn't blame yourself…ever." He mumbles and I close my eyes when his lips brush my neck.
"Peeta…we're nearly home." I mumble, "I know, you excited?" He says.
"Not really, I'm just worried." His grip on me loosens and my grip on him tightens. I just don't want to let go. He realises and holds me again.
"Haymitch wants us by the way." He says.
This time I pull back but I keep my arms around him. "Is he mad again?" I ask.
"No, you have nothing to worry about." He kisses the tip of my nose and I give him a quick kiss.
"Let's go then." He says and he takes my hand and lead me out.
Haymitch takes us to his room where it's just us.
"Alright, after today we're heading to the Capitol and then to District 12, when we're there we only have one more chance to give out a last impression. We need to figure out our last move. And these last few days need to be the brightest out of all. Do anything, anything you can if you want to make it work. Anything." Haymitch explains nice and slowly, "So, are we still buying a ring for Katniss?" Haymitch continues.
Peeta and I look at each other. He looks bothered when he looks back at Haymitch.
"Anything…" He mumbles quietly.
"When are we proposing?" Haymitch asks directly at me.
"Um…I think…we should make it like a public thing. For everyone to see." I mumble.
"Well…give me a sec…"Haymitch says and starts thinking.
I look at Peeta and he gazes at the floor. I touch his back and he doesn't make any move.
"They do an interview with Caesar when you're in the Capitol. Best time to propose Peeta. Better come up with a speech." Haymitch says coolly.
Peeta nods slowly and leaves the room and he does it with just 3 strides.
"What was that?" I ask Haymitch, "I thought he wanted this anyway?"
"He wanted it to be real." Haymitch mutters slowly.
"Oh." I look down at my lap and fiddle with my fingers.
"You could live a thousand lifetimes and not deserve him you know." Haymitch continues and my shoulders drop; another heavy weight has been added on.
"I-I know." I mumble softly, "We really aren't being fair Haymitch."
"It's life Katniss. It's his fault…" And he says something I don't think I'll forget really easily, "He fell for you."
He fell for you. Yeah, Peeta did.
"It's not his fault!" I yell back.
"It was just a figure of speech. Don't get mad!" He says back.
"I don't know what to do anymore Haymitch."
"Just do anything sweetheart. Anything." He mumbles the cabinets in his room, probably looking for beer. I get out of his room and look for Peeta. One part of me tells me I should and the other is telling not to and just leave him alone.
I don't know. I don't know what to do anymore. I walk and I walk until I end up outside of Peeta's door. I knock softly and there's no answer. I turn the knob and open the door. There's no one there, I move around the room. Peeta hasn't slept here in a long time that's why his bed sheets look clean. I go to the door that I think goes to the bathroom. I turn the knob slowly and when the door opens mist fogs up my vision. I swat the mist away and my eyes turn wide and Peeta stands there…naked.
Naked! I never got to look at Peeta's reaction before I gasp and slam the door closed. I walk a few steps forward, my mind blank by shock, I can't even move.
I don't hear the door of the bathroom open and I jump when Peeta's arms go around me from behind.
"Peeta!" I say loudly.
He chuckles and burrows his head on my hair, "Yes Katniss?" His voice is muffled.
"Uh. Don't scare me like that." I try to say as calm as I can. I feel my back start getting wet and it must be because of Peeta. He did take a shower.
"P- Peeta. I'm sorry I walked in on you. I couldn't hear anything." I mumble.
"It's okay." He says and turns me around. I don't know why, but when I close my eyes shut when he turns me and he laughs.
"It's okay Katniss. I'm covered."
I open my eyes slowly and he is. He's waist down is covered in an orange blanket. I smile at the color.
"What are you smiling about?" He asks almost cheekily.
I shake my head and glare at him. "You should get changed." I say seriously.
His smile drops a little. "Yeah, maybe I should."
He moves to his dresser and start getting clothes out.
"Wait Peeta. You already took a shower today." I say suspiciously.
"Yeah…I did. Funny right?" He mumbles.
He shrugs, "I don't know. I might be going crazy. I like to take showers when I'm upset. It's just a think I'm used to, when my mother finishes beating me I take a shower and I cry in the shower. Then all my tears get washed down the drain. It's better than letting it dry up in your face."
He is upset. About the whole wedding. I start to feel bad straight away.
As if I'm not in the room Peeta drops the towel and I turn around at reflex.
"Katniss really?" He asks.
"Yes Peeta, really?" I say somewhat annoyed.
I feel him move and the next thing I know his behind me. "If we can sleep in the same bed together without out you getting creeped out then you shouldn't feel weird about me being naked."
"Do you have underwear on?" I ask him and I cover my eyes.
"I just don't see why I can get really close to you at night an-" I interrupt Peeta before he can speak.
"I'll turn around when you put something on." My voice sound harsh, almost threatening.
I feel him move away. "Katniss what do you think? Boxers or briefs?"
I roll my eyes, "Peeta just put something on."
"I'll put on these briefs. They look like shorts to me, like short shorts, only for men." He mumbles and I find myself smiling. "There we go, underwear on. Turn around now Katniss."
I slowly turn and look at Peeta smiling handsomely at me. I'm never going to get used to seeing Peeta half-naked, with all his abs and muscles showing. He stares at me smiling and I stare at him scowling. "What should I wear today?" He asks.
"Peeta, stop playing games with me." I say with a small smile.
"Pants or shorts? Shirt, long sleeves or tank tops?" He asks with a smile.
"Just put some clothes on." I say sounding a little annoyed.
He smiles and walks closer to me, I feel like I should back away but I don't. He eventually wraps his arms around me he says something to me in the most sweetest voice he can, "I don't know what to wear for the day Katniss. Could you please help me?" He kisses me and I give in. I put my arms around him and when I feel his warm skin I wake up a little bit and break our kiss.
"I don't feel comfortable kissing a Peeta who only has his underwear on." I say.
"You have to at least feel comfortable with me half naked Katniss. We're going to get married." He says.
My smile drops a little and I hold onto his neck limply.
"Yeah, um, about that." I start, "Peeta if you're not happy we can- we can come up with something else you know."
He lets go of me and goes to his wardrobe and starts looking for clothes. I don't like it when he does this; when his quiet and he cries silently. Silent tears that I don't get to see or hear. I decide to change the subject and I stand next to him while he shuffles around his clothes.
"You know that I'm not much for fashion but I think you should use this white V-neck and wear these jeans. They're black but they look loose you know, not too tight." I say quickly and grab the clothing and hand it to Peeta.
"Hey thanks!" He says smiling but he doesn't sound too excited. I watch him put his shirt and his jeans.
"Could you hand me that belt then." He says, I look around and I see it hanged on the headboard. I grab the black leather belt and pass it to him.
"Katniss…maybe you should check on Cinna for the day you know. Talk about your dress for the day or something."
"And where are you going to be?" I ask him.
"I don't know." He shrugs.
I walk to him, "And if I need you?" I say.
"You won't. Trust me Katniss, you don't need me. I don't even know why Haymitch and you thought of marriage in the first place."
"You have no idea how-" I stop myself before I can continue.
He lets out a small smile and hugs me. It surprises me that I'm surprised.
"I just feel like a hug Katniss." He mumbles into my neck.
I hug him tightly and before I let go to get out of his room, I kiss his cheek and leave. I don't know what to do for the day. Obviously Peeta can't really stand me right now. I look for Cinna like what Peeta said and we talk about fashion and dresses.
I spend my whole day with Cinna until he said I need to get changed for District 1. It was sad not seeing Peeta for the whole day. I didn't know what to do. I don't see him again until we go outside and his all nicely groomed for tonight.
When we get to dinner we get introduced to the mayor again and luckily he doesn't have a son. The first thing we do is eat dinner. When Peeta sees that I put a little too much on his plate he doesn't put a lot on his because he knows that I will make him eat the leftovers.
"I promise that I'll try to finish all of my food this time." I say. I don't waste food; I just try to eat as many as I can while I'm here. I try to finish the entire food in my plate but everything is just so delicious you keep putting more.
"I really doubt that you know." He says and we sit at an available table just for the two of us.
"If you don't mind answering Peeta but…where were you all day?" I ask him slowly, a little nervous that he might get mad.
He shrugs, "Thinking, Painting and I even took a nap. How was your day?"
"Well I learnt a lot about fabric and color and which clothes match with witch clothes." I say flatly.
"Ohhh, must've been fun."
"Very…" I say sarcastically.
I find a weird looking piece of meat in my dish. I don't judge food but this one looks really different, maybe it's like a one of a kind.
"Peeta, could you taste half of this for me?" I say to Peeta.
He looks up at me and smiles, "Sure."
I half the square shaped meat and feed it to Peeta. He makes a joke by biting my finger while I feed him and I roll my eyes at his poor attempt of scaring me. He chews and then he nods happily.
"I haven't seen that in any of the trays yet but it's good. Try it."
"Okay." I say and he is right. I don't know what it is though. Maybe some animal that they have in District 1. Peeta was right again, I didn't finish my food and I let him eat the leftovers.
"You always leave food for me don't you Peeta?" I ask him while he eats.
"Mm hm." He hums and nods. I can see that Peeta is still upset but he is very good at hiding it. But not good enough. I can still see it in his eyes, it's hard to tell but when you deep in his blue eyes you can tell that something is wrong.
I stop staring at Peeta and come to my senses when he burps silently and I giggle. I grab a handkerchief and wipe some sauce on his chin. It was probably from the salad. He gives me a big wide silly smile and I do the same. We burst out laughing and stop immediately when people around the room start staring.
"I'll be right back Peeta, I need to go to the bathroom." I say and make a stand and he stands as well. I look at him confusingly.
"I'll wait outside the bathroom." He says and I continue.
I sprinkle my face with the cold water so that my makeup doesn't come off and then I realise what's at stake. My family's life, Gale's life, Peeta's life and their family's life is what's at stake here. This is one of our last chances to convince people that I do love Peeta.
Before I go out I tell myself something I shouldn't try to forget the whole night, to remind me of what I have to do.
Last chance. You love him. You love Peeta. You love him. You love Peeta. Last chance Katniss.
"I open the door and waiting for me outside is Peeta standing awkwardly while another female enters the bathroom. She gives me an exciting smile and I give he a small one.
"How was your pee?" He asks me.
I laugh, "It was good, felt like heaven to be honest."
He laughs harder and takes hold of my hand. "There's this balcony just past the hall. We go through the French door." Peeta says to me.
I furrow, "You want us to go the balcony? Like, the terrace?"
"Yeah. I don't really want to dance just yet." He says.
I nod an okay and he leads me down the hall. I see the French door and the dark sky through it when we reach the end of the hall. When we reach it, Peeta opens the door and the cold air hits me and I get goose bumps straight away, I even shiver.
Peeta sees this and takes his jacket off and puts it around me.
"Thank you…" I say quietly. I walk to the nice white wooden fence around the balcony. I lean my elbows on them and stare out at the dim lights of District 1.
Peeta stands beside me. "It's nice to finally get some fresh air right?" He asks me.
"Yes. Of course it is." I lean on his side and put my head on this shoulder.
"Katniss…do- do you t-think that w-we wou-would be a hap-happy m-married couple?" His voice is shaky and he sound really nervous.
"Um…hopefully. Hopefully it won't interfere with anything that we have." I tell him and I know I'm telling the truth. I just hope he believes it.
"There are so many stars tonight. Look." I point to the sky and there are billions of them scattered everywhere. The dark sky is colored in white light that shines beautifully. I look over at Peeta and his head is craned up looking at the starts with a grin on his face. I smile at him because he looks so happy. When his happy it makes me happy, I find myself wondering why. He turns his head to look at me suddenly and I jump a little because I feel like I've been caught watching him in a way that…I don't know. Like I'm stalking him or something.
"You know sometimes I would think about you in that white dress. Going down the aisle. Marrying the person you fell in love with and with me watching from distance." This whole thing is making Peeta crazy, more and more insecure about what's going on. When he said this, it was like all hope was gone.
I stand up straighter and look down at the dark street below. I look at how empty it looks, not even a peacekeeper in sight. Is that how it feels like for Peeta? Empty, alone and abandoned just knowing that the girl he loves doesn't love him back. When will I ever fall in love with Peeta? I mean, will I ever fall in love with Peeta?
I don't know.
"I would always tell myself that you would look so gorgeous walking down that aisle. And the groom would be the most luckiest man in the world you know. I told myself that I would be there when that happens, that I will be watching. But that won't be happening now, because one of the best days of your life is ruined. You won't get to know what it feels like to marry the person you love; it would be the best feeling in the world. And now you're forced to marry someone you were thrown into the arena with. It's just unfair Katniss…it's not even real. Not for you…not for me." He says shakily and I'm finding it hard to breath. I find myself gripping on the bar of the fence and I close my eyes trying to block out everything.
My chest tightens and I start gasping for breath.
"Katniss?" Peeta asks alertly. I wave him off.
"It's okay. I'll be fine, I'm fine." I say and I look at him. He has a small smile and his looking at me with his striking blue eyes.
"You know I really regret telling the whole of Panem I loved you. I never knew it would ruin your life." He says, "I'm sorry Katniss." He says and I see him blink a few tears away.
"P-Peeta. Peeta l-look at me." I stumble on my words because of my chest. "We're going to get through this together. You know what Peeta, you probably don't remember, but I'm lucky I'm marrying you. Don't make yourself feel bad and remember that."
"E-ev-even t-though it-it's not re-real for you an-and m-me." He stutters.
"Even though," I get closer to him and kiss him. "I'm the luckiest girl in the world to marry someone like you." I say after.
He smiles a little and I know that he doesn't believe me.
I frown, "You don't believe me do you?" I say quite upset.
"You're not very good at lying." He says.
"And you're not very good yourself. You know you couldn't tell if I was lying because I wasn't." I mumble. "The last thing I need is for you to think I'm a liar Peeta. If you love me, then believe me."
He looks down and I see him harden his jaw. "Really?" He asks.
"Yes, really. The luckiest."
"Well I did something good then didn't I?" He says playfully and kisses me keenly. We kiss for what feels like hours and we stop with a jump because we hear the door open and the mayor gasp an apology.
"Oh dear! I didn't know this area was taken." The mayor exclaims. "I am deeply sorry! Please…no please…continue if you wish." He winks before he closes the door once more. Peeta takes my hadn again and I look at him.
"Let's sit." He points his head at the wall and we sit down in front of it, with our back leaning on the cold cement. I take my heels of because they really are bothering me and Peeta and I look at the stars.
"You never realise how beautiful things are until you actually go out there and look at them." He says.
"I wouldn't be able to know what's beautiful if it wasn't for you. You've shown me the most beautiful things that are left untouched and unbroken by out dirty hands the whole tour. I won't be able to stop thanking you for that." I say to him.
"A kiss would be nice." He says with a joking grin.
"Are you not tired with my kisses?"
"Who would?" He says and leans in. He gives me a tender kiss seasoned with a smile.
We get called inside a few minutes later by no other than Effie, who has probably wasted her time looking for us. We spend the night dancing and sharing affectionate kisses through the night. I see through the corner of my eyes that when people see us kiss they let out a smile. The mayor has caught us kissing anyway; Peeta and I were alone too, isn't that enough information for him to spread around the District as just another gossip?
I'm taken away by my thoughts when Peeta compliments me, "I never really get the time to say how beautiful you look every night. If I had the time, I would make a speech for every dress and make up." He says.
"Did you drink anything?" I ask jokingly, "Because you don't know what you're saying."
"No. Not after last night, with the whole drug thing. No. Not even the water." He says.
"Now that's a bit mean. District 2 hates us, no wonder why they would do that to you." I say and I wince when Peeta has accidently stepped on my foot while we dance.
"I'm sorry Katniss."
"Don't be, I'm not as good as you are." And to prove that point I step on his with my heels and he groans loudly. People around the room look instantly. How many times have Peeta and I had this awkward moment happen to us? Too much to be honest, I don't know why I'm not used to it. Peeta hides his expression in my neck and I hid mine in his. I hear a few people laugh and giggle. I redden at the embarrassment.
We continue to dance until the night ends.
I wait for Peeta in the bed. He hasn't come in the room yet. He said, as soon as we got in the train, that he'd be in my room as quick as he can. He didn't shower in here and he is talking a really long time. I try not to worry myself. I fall asleep waiting for Peeta and later wake up to someone shuffling around the room.
I blink a few times to wake up. How long was I asleep? Probably not too long anyway, just a few minutes. I slowly turn and someone stands in front of the bedside table taking care of some thick paper or cardboard, I'm too tired to concentrate.
"Peeta?" I say.
"No. Peet- Pe- Peeta f-fell off the train." This man's voice sounds shaky and sad.
My heart drops. What!
"What!" I scream.
"I'm- I'm sorry. W-we found this in his room though. W-were guess- guessing it's for you."
My eyes waters straight away and tears start falling.
"I'm sorry." He leaves quickly and I can't make him explain what happened to Peeta.
I try to move but I'm frozen. Peeta fell of the train. What! How? Why?
I sob harder and harder. I start shaking even. I remember the man being here and then suddenly I remember him dropping something on the night table. I can't breathe, I can't move and I just can feel anything right now.
What's happened with Peeta?
Guys...are you okay? Um, please review and tell me what you think. Sorry for the cliffhanger. Please don't get mad. :)