"It looks nothing like the last train I've ever ridden," Peeta comments.
"I'm grateful, If not that Trinket woman would irritate the nerve out of me!"
"There are no way you grateful over that, Haymitch! You miss her so bad, do you?" I grin. "There is no use saying it otherwise."
"You don't want to walk down that path, Sweetheart," Haymitch glares at me.
"And why is that?"
"He got an army of geese for sure," Peeta smiles.
"Yeah… a pack of improperly feed angry geese sound frightening," Haymitch mocks. "Even the old Capitol mutt is nothing compared to it."
We all laugh.
"It's feeling nice. Incredibly nice," I say after all the laughter subsides.
"What is nice? Talking about Effie or the joke about Haymitch's geese?"
"All of it. The three of us, the wreckages, laugh out loud over the horror," I say quietly. "Like it never had any effect on us."
Peeta takes my hands. "It's good, isn't it? It means we almost recovered."
"It is. That's why I said it's nice."
"Well… I better get going now. The train is going to leave soon," Haymitch hands over Willow to Peeta.
"Thank you, Haymitch," I embrace him.
"Don't worry about it. Take care of yourself and Willow, she needs you," Haymitch says. "Peeta will be there, so… I'm not worried, but call me if you ever need something."
"Good," Haymitch walks toward the sliding door.
"Haymitch… I stock up your refrigerator with buns, loaves of breads and frozen stew. You'll need to heat them up before you eat them," Peeta says. "You can find seven of your liquor bottles on the storage cabinet near the back door. I also put some instant canned goods and several boxes of cookies, just in case. Those foods will last for two weeks, so don't forget to eat."
"Wait… what?! Seven!? Where is the other?"
"I keep them, don't worry about it. Your share will last for a week if you drink a bottle a day."
"A bottle a day?!" Haymitch shouts.
"Yes, a bottle a day. But you know, suit yourself," Peeta smiles. "I'm going to call you every day to make sure you eat and after a week, I'll tell you where I put the other bottles. One bottle to find, for each day until we come back and there is no need to argue about it, you'll just startle Willow."
"You not serious are you?" Haymitch pleads.
"Unfortunately, I'm sure he is, Haymitch," I snicker. "You know him. He never jokes about taking care of us. He's the superior one in this trio, remember?"
He looks at me, an agreement flickers across his gray eyes.
"I better get going and grab my first bottle for today then," He mumbles. "Bye you three, have a safe trip."
"Where do you hide the other bottle?" I ask Peeta after Haymitch leaves.
"Somewhere, but I'm not going to tell you,"
"You'll tell him."
"No, I'm not."
"No, I'm not. Why will I tell him?" I ask, annoyed.
"Because you love him. He ran out a week ago and just got the liquors yesterday. You'll feel sorry and tell him," Peeta puts Willow gently inside her stroller, she dozes off.
"I won't and when did exactly I ever say that I love him?!"
"Never, but you do."
"Oh yeah? What makes you so sure about it?" I ask peevishly.
"Because it's the truth, Katniss. Haymitch and you are alike and I spent my life studying both of you, so I won't be the outcast ever again," Peeta answers quietly.
I can feel my rage subsided by his words.
"You will never be an outcast, Peeta" I pout.
"I know," He smiles.
"It's the truth!" I shout.
"Shh… you'll wake Willow up."
"I know. I'm sorry. But, you have you to believe it," I plead.
"You aren't an outcast. You have never been and never will. What happened in our first games was just a lucky coincidence. I was dumb and Haymitch was clever enough to take an advantage on my stupidity," I mumble quietly. "It's just like you said before, we are alike."
I have to convince him. I don't know why but I have to. If I failed, I would lose him. I can't stand the thought, I start crying, sobbing. What's wrong with me? I cry a lot lately. A lot like a LOT.
Peeta hugs me tightly. "Why are you crying, Katniss?"
"I just… I don't know. I cry a lot lately. I'm afraid, Peeta," I hiccup. "I'm scared about a lot of things lately."
"Hey… I'm here, love. Everything is going to be okay," Peeta soothes me. "I know this trip is huge, but you have nothing to worry about. We are going to be fine. Two weeks and we'll be safely home again."
"I know, I don't know what is wrong with me but I'm afraid. Terrified," I look into his blue eyes." Please… please promise me you'll never leave me alone."
"I promise that I will never leave you alone. I promise I will never leave Willow alone," He wipes my tears away. "I love both of you so much, Katniss. How can I ever leave? It is you, I'm afraid will."
"No! I won't. I will never leave, Peeta!"
"Then please promise me that you'll never leave me too."
"I Promise. I swear that I'll never leave you or Willow. Never."