A/N: I sound like a broken record but as always I am so sorry for the delay. Please, enjoy and let me know what you would like to see from Peeta's POV.
"Wow." My dad finally breaks the awkward silence that followed our baby announcement. "Congratulations, you two." It seems like the rest of my family was waiting for dad's approval first. They all offer their congratulations with hugs and kisses.
"I didn't even realize you guys were dating." My sister-in-law, Beth, confesses.
"Me either." Wheaton chimes.
"We're not." I quickly explain. Katniss has made it clear how she feels about going down that road besides I don't want to make her uncomfortable by having to explain our strange situation to my family.
"What do you mean you're not dating? How did this happen?" Mom explodes. I shouldn't be surprised by her outburst. My mother's family has always been more on the conservative side and a pregnancy before wedlock is scandalous enough. The fact that we're not even dating is worse.
"It was an accident that involved a little too much tequila." If there is one thing I learned growing up with my mother, it is to always be strong in any decisions you make because if she catches even a hint of uncertainty, she will latch onto it until she completely changes your outlook on the situation. Lacing my hand with Katniss' I continue confidently. "But it was a blessing in disguise. We're both really looking forward to having this baby."
"I guess I'm a little confused." Mom is not giving up easily. "Will you just raise this baby as two friends? Share custody? How will this work?" Immediately I squeeze Katniss' hand for reassurance. I don't want her freaking out over these questions. Sure, the situation isn't ideal but I know we'll be alright.
"Katniss moved into the house. She has her own room. We're both going to be there every step of the way raising this baby as two good friends."
"Are you fucking kidding me?" Rye blurts out causing Beth to admonish him for his language in front of the children.
"Well, it's a little unconventional but if anyone can do it then it's you two. You'll both be great parents." Leave it to my dad to save the day by ending this awkward discussion. Thankfully, conversation turns into baby talk, advice from Wheaton and Beth, and Rye announcing his plans to use our Peanut to "pick up chicks". All and all my family takes the baby news much better than I could have predicted even my mother comes around reluctantly, admitting she can't wait to have another grandbaby to spoil. Eventually my oldest brother and his family head home when it's way past the kids' bed time. My parents, Katniss and I follow shortly thereafter.
"Your family took the news better than I expected." My eyes follow Katniss as she crawls into my childhood bed from the mirror on my dresser. Distractedly, I empty my pockets and remove my watch.
"I told you, you had nothing to worry about." I tease pulling my shirt over my head, secretly hoping she's enjoying the show. I begin to remove my jeans before realizing this could be awkward. "Uh, do you mind if I sleep in my boxers? I didn't pack pajamas." I never thought we'd be sharing a room together.
She squeaks out a feeble no which gives me some sort of hope that my state of undress may be affecting her. "No, I don't mind." I crawl into bed next to her as she sets an alarm on her phone. She busies herself with her task, purposefully ignoring my stare. I know Katniss better than I know anyone and I am positive there is still something else on her mind. "What?" She asks without glancing in my direction.
"Something else is still bothering you." Katniss carefully places her phone on the night stand. I cup her cheek gently turning her face in my direction. We stare at one another, neither saying a word before I cave first like always. "Please tell me, Katniss."
I watch her fight an internal battle with herself before confessing her troubles. "Your parents are so sweet."
"And that's a problem because?" I could understand her being upset if they treated her awful or disowned me after our confession but they were extremely well behaved considering the situation.
The next words out of her mouth completely break my heart. "I wish my mom and dad were here." As soon as the words leave her mouth, she sobs uncontrollably. I'm not used to Katniss being so free with her emotions but I've read in the books that baby hormones will do that to a woman.
"Shhhhhhhh, I'm here, Katniss, I'm here. We'll be ok." Wrapping my hands around her, I rock us back and forth in the hopes to comfort her. I will do everything in my power to care for Katniss and Peanut. "Breathe, baby, breathe. I know it's not the same but my family is your family too. They love you and they'll be there every step of the way."
"I know. Thank you." She sniffles. Tentatively I smile before kissing her forehead. I am not one hundred percent sure what possesses me but I kiss away the tears from the corner of her eyes followed by her nose, then cheeks and the corner of her mouth. This can only lead to no good but I can't help myself. Meeting her eyes, I get the reassurance I need to bring my lips to hers. I put all of my love for her and our unborn child into this kiss. To my relief, she deepens the kiss, exploring my mouth with her tongue, running her fingers through my hair, holding me to her. Eventually I come to my senses and pull away. I am taking advantage of her when she is at her most vulnerable although I am going to be the one that gets hurt in the end.
"I'm sorry. I shouldn't have…" But she cuts me off before I can finish by capturing her lips with mine again.
"Peeta, please, I need this tonight." It doesn't take long for me to decide the pain I will feel tomorrow is worth the comfort she needs tonight. Rolling her onto her back, I hover above her attacking her neck and collarbone with my lips. My hands find the hem of her t-shirt, pulling it up to reveal her small baby bump. The sight of our baby growing inside of her arouses me more than anything ever has. Softly, I kiss her stomach.
"I love you." I confess to Peanut although truthfully, I am speaking to Katniss too. My tongue slowly follows my hands to her bare breasts before reaching her lips again. She must get tired of the torture I am bestowing upon her because she pushes me onto my back, climbing on top. It's her turn to explore my body with her delicate hands. Without breaking eye contact, I sit up tossing her shirt over her head and crashing my lips to hers once more. My fingers slide underneath her sleep shorts to find her panties soaking wet. Pushing her underwear aside, I slip one then two fingers into her slick folds. I put pressure on her clit with my thumb as my mouth finds one of her breasts while my other thumb and forefinger pinch and tease the other hardened nipple. She's obviously enjoying my attention as a moan escapes her mouth. "Shhhhhhh. My parents." I tease.
Our lips locked, we fall backwards onto the mattress making it easy for Katniss to lick her way down to my boxers. She quickly discards the offending item freeing my straining cock. Oh, how I missed this. I watch her swirl her tongue around my head before enclosing her sweet mouth around my length. She knows exactly what she's doing as she sucks me harder. I no longer resist thrusting my hips towards her mouth, running my hands through her hair. "God, Katniss that feels so good." I moan. There is no way I am going to last much longer if she keeps this up.
"Shhhhhhh, your parents." She repeats my words back to me.
Smiling, I command, "Take off your pants and come here." She does as I ask with no objection. When I sit up, Katniss places both her hands on my shoulders before lowering herself onto my waiting erection. We both sigh as I push my entire length into her wet folds. The feeling is beyond amazing. We fit perfectly together as if we were made for one another. Katniss rocks back and forth, digging her nails into my shoulders as she rides me faster and harder. I lick the skin around the shell of her ear before whispering, "Come for me, Katniss". Her body tenses when her orgasm takes over as I bite down on the lobe of her ear. Quickly, I quiet her by capturing her mouth with mine as I thrust a few more times finding my own sweet release. We let our breathing slow as our foreheads press together before curling into the fetal position. I wrap my arm around Katniss pressing her front to my back, splaying my hand on her growing belly.
My mind wonders to Katniss' parents as we lay there in silence. I can't help but think that she may not have the same intimacy issues she has now if her parents were still around today. Would we be together if that were the case? I wonder if they would have thought me a good match for their daughter. I would have done anything to win them over. "I wish I could have met them – your parents."
"Me too. They would have loved you." She answers my silent question.
Hesitantly, I ask, "Would you tell me about them?" Katniss has never been one to divulge much information about the two most important people in her life but I hate that Peanut is going to grow up not knowing her maternal grandparents. Plus, I think remembering will help Katniss deal with the loss she is feeling.
"They were the best parents anyone could ever ask for. My dad had a beautiful voice." This small piece of information brings a smile to my face.
"Like father, like daughter." Katniss has the most beautiful voice I have ever heard.
"I guess I do take after him. Prim definitely takes after my mom." I've seen pictures and I would have to agree as far as physical likeness. Katniss continues to describe her parents in such great detail, I feel closer to her and to them on some level. "You would've loved them." She tells me.
"I already do." I squeeze her a little tighter.
"From my story?"
"That and because they gave me you." There is no doubt I may have crossed an arbitrary line in our complicated relationship but I need her to know how special she is to me, how much they mean to me because they are her parents, they are a part of her.
This time it's Katniss that breaks our silence. "They were so in love with each other. Sometimes I think it's a good thing they both died in that car crash. I can't imagine one living without the other." My heart breaks when I hear the quiver in her voice. It's strange but I completely understand what she means. I couldn't live without her.
"I know the feeling." I quietly admit. She doesn't say another word and neither do I. That is until I hear the change in her breathing. "Katniss?" I whisper, confirming she has drifted off into a peaceful slumber. When she doesn't respond, I kiss her shoulder. "I can't imagine living without you."
The annoying siren of Katnisss' alarm wakes me from the best night of sleep I have had in weeks. Quickly, I reach over Katniss, hitting the snooze button out of habit. I hate that damn thing every time I sleep over. I nuzzle my face in the crook of her neck pulling her closer against my chest. "Five more minutes." I mumble causing her to giggle. Her laughter wakes me up further and that's when I realize we're both naked. Suddenly, I remember everything that happened last night.
"Shit, Katniss. I'm sorry." I pull away from her.
"What are you sorry about?" She turns around to face me. I am not one hundred percent sure what the appropriate answer is to this question. It's not like I want her to think I regret what we did but I also don't want to accidentally confess my true feeling for her. My feelings would only make her uncomfortable because she has made it crystal clear she doesn't want anything other than friendship.
"Last night. I took advantage of you." She raises an eyebrow at my statement like she doesn't agree. I don't know if she remembers but I'm the one that initiated the first kiss last night.
"Are you sure it wasn't the other way around?" What? Is Katniss Everdeen implying she took advantage of me? I try to hide my smile as I shake my head. She is full of surprises this morning.
"How awkward are things going to be between us now?" It would kill me for things to go back to the way they were immediately following our first night together although now that we live together, it won't be quite the same. She can't ignore me as easily this time around.
"Not very awkward at all because what happens in Scranton stays in Scranton." Her response completely takes me by surprise. Would she be opposed to doing it again?
There is only one way to find out, I smile. "Well, in that case..." My hands explore her naked body as I bring my lips to her neck. I half expect her to push me away and laugh off my advances but when she runs her hands through my hair and moans in approval, I give a silent thanks to the powers that be. We make love for the first time in the light of day, never breaking eye contact while I move above her, our hands intertwined above her head. This is how it feels to share your soul with another human being, I think. There is no doubt my heart is going to break all over again when we return home to how things are supposed to be between us.
Katniss lets me shower first while she finishes packing. When it's her turn, I head out of my bedroom to find Rye passed out on the couch in the living room and dad starting breakfast in the kitchen. He informs me mom is still getting ready for the day. "She'll come around." Dad says out of nowhere as he mixes chocolate chips into his pancake batter.
"Who? Mom?" I ask while tossing bacon into the frying pan on the stove.
"You just caught us by surprise is all and we worry about you. You'll understand soon enough." He pauses staring at me, waiting for me to turn my focus on him. "Son, you know how much we adore Katniss. We love her as much as you do or well, maybe not the same but you know what I mean. She's like a daughter to us." I nod my head encouraging him to continue. "Your mother and I know how you feel about her." I open my mouth to protest but he raises the hand not holding the spoon he uses to mix the batter. "Let me finish. Your mother and I know how you feel about Katniss. We honestly thought you were going to tell us you were dating or maybe getting married, really anything but this. With that being said, I think she might feel the same way you do." Again, I start to protest but he shakes his head. "Trust me. I see the way she watches you although you may not notice it because you're too busy looking at her. I guess what I'm trying to say is you're going to have to be patient with her. I don't want you to get discouraged and hurt her or yourself in the process. Be yourself, take care of her and I think she'll come around too."
"What?" I stutter, still trying to process everything he just said.
"That girl loves you more than you know. I think this baby could be the best thing that's happened to either one of you. With any luck you'll admit you're true feelings for each and put the rest of us out of our misery." I'm about to explain to my dad he's the one confused when my mother yells at my brother to get his lazy ass out of bed.
Mom enters the kitchen to set the table for breakfast. Rye and Katniss soon joins us making it nearly impossible to return to my earlier conversation with my father. However, his words are the only thing on my mind as we say goodbye to my family and make the hour long drive back to Philadelphia.