I watch the last lights of the Capitol skyline die away as we enter the tunnel through the mountains. We stopped to drop off and pick up passengers on our way to Twelve. I have a feeling more we picked up more than we left off. And more will surely be hitching a ride to this event.
Outside my small room window it's pitch black. As bright as the lights are in my room I can't tell if the darkness outside is night or still tunnel. Either way it's late and I should get a good night's sleep before I arrive home.
I tie my hair back so it will be quicker to brush in the morning. Or not brush at all. I'm not one for dressing up. It takes me all of ten minutes from the time I get up to be dressed, washed and out the door most mornings.
Just as I reach for the light there's a knock at the door. I'm a little wary to open it. My father made me accept his offer of paying for a private room on the train so that I wouldn't be bothered by the other passengers. As far as know the other occupants of the train have no clue I am aboard, just some of the train workers. Of course, word does travel fast and if one happened to mention to another that Violet Mellark was on board it wouldn't take long for the whispers to reach the entire length of the train.
Another knock. This time with a voice. "Message for Room 102."
Judging by the brazen voice at the door this is going to require a face to face meeting. When I open the door the man in front of me is all smiles. "Ms. Mellark, I presume? It's a pleasure. Sorry to disturb you at such at late hour but I have an urgent message."
He looks at though he's been blasted out of a Capitol fashion cannon. From head to toe he screams Look at me. Silver streaks run through his dark hair. Painted around his eyes are greens that fade into blues, resembling the feathers of a peacock. His tanned skin glows even more with the glitter decorating his cheeks. His lips shimmer from an emerald green lipstick. It was a mistake opening the door. I should have pretended to be fast asleep. I glare at him. "It is extremely late, not to mention very inconvenient. I'm sure it could have waited until the morning."
He shakes his head. "I'm afraid not. It's from your mother and father…"
"They asked me personally to make sure you arrived in 12 safely. They hate having you travel alone, especially overnight, and I told them I would make certain you were fine," he says.
Unimpressed, I fold my arms. "Well as you can see, nothing eventful has happened. Thank you for your concern. Now if you wouldn't mind, I was just about to go to sleep-"
He takes an uninvited step into the doorway tainting the air with his Capitol cologne. "Mind if I check your room? You'd be surprised at how invading some people can be. I once found a camera in a shower. I wouldn't feel right reporting back to your parents without checking." His face exudes concern.
"If you insist," I huff not hiding an ounce of annoyance.
He takes off his black scarf and grey jacket revealing a thin light green shirt tucked into his pants. Not much of a disguise. There is very little chance he was able to sneak onto the train without getting noticed. He throws them carelessly on my bed before I can stop him. Then proceeds to make a show of investigating the bathroom. Pointing out all the places a camera could be hidden.
Playing up the concerned role he asks me if I've used the shower yet. "Not that it's any of your business, but no I haven't."
"Good," he says as he leaves me to inspect the dressing room. Against my better judgment I follow him.
After giving it a good once over, he's content with finding nothing suspicious there either. Though he tried to convince me it was safer to change under the covers of the bed the next time I get dressed. Never can be too paranoid apparently.
Try as he does, nothing turns up under, around or over my bed either. The only thing about to make an appearance in this room is my impatience. "So you're satisfied then? You'll let my parents know there's nothing to worry about?"
He arches an eyebrow at me. "I don't know if satisfied is the right word… You aren't out of the woods yet. In fact, I'm not sure if you're really aware of the dangers of … Well, you're a young, attractive woman. All alone. Far from home. No one to protect you. What if the train derails? What if someone tries to break in? Worse yet, what if you get cold?"
Oh, the horror. "I'm actually feeling a little warm," I correct him.
He gives me a long look, up and down. By the time his gaze reaches back up to my face I find my heart rate has double. My safety is clearly the farthest thing from his mind. "You do look a little… flushed. Let me see if you have a fever."
My feet are numb, frozen to the ground as he approaches me. Both of his hands lightly cup my cheeks. Silly me, he's just testing my skin temperature. Then he kisses my forehead softly. It's gentle and tender, and only warms me up further.
His thumb runs along my jaw line to my chin. There he tilts my head upwards, forcing me to look directly into his green eyes, now darkened with a hunger. I think he's going to speak next, since I seemed to have lost the ability. Instead kisses follow on each of my cheeks, my eyelids, my lips. After a light nip on my bottom lip he asks, "Sure you're not made of ice?" Must be referring to my lack of a response.
My thoughts are hazy. I have reason to believe it's in part due to his intoxicating smell. And just his natural heat radiating off of him. He's so close that if I were made of ice I surely would have melted by now. My resolve not to give in to his flirtation has definitely been softened. I want to kiss him back. But not before he does one more thing for me.
I swallow and take my time finding the words I need to say before I accidentally forget and give in too quickly. "Before you find out what I'm made of, you really need to wash that gunk off of you."
His eyes light up, amused. "I thought you liked it. It looks quite nice on you already."
I rear my head away from his hands rubbing off the spots where he kissed me. I am not amused.
His arms find me again and he attempts to attack me again with kisses. A few land and I yell at him each time. Our struggle doesn't last long. With one strong arm he drags me into the bathroom and positions me in front of the shower.
"Don't even think about it," I warn him. I'm wearing one of my nicer sets of pajamas, a present from Effie. She would die if I let the satin garment get ruined in a shower.
"If only you could read my thoughts." One by one, pieces of his clothing find their way to the floor. He pauses at his black underwear and smirks at me. My jaw has lost all feeling and I no longer have the ability to close it. "Quite the improvement, wouldn't you say?" He lets go of his underwear and rubs his hand across his bare chest. It's been removed of all hair since the last time I saw it. "Smooth as silk. You can touch it if you don't believe me."
I will. After he looks more like himself. I point to the shower. "Just clean yourself up and then we'll talk about touching."
With a sigh he gives in. Slowly, at a pace that sends currents straight to my toes, his hand descends down to the hem of his underwear. With his eyes locked on mine he pulls them down to the floor, steps out of them and hands them to me. "These are worth a pretty penny in the Capitol."
"Great, so this hasn't been a wasted opportunity." I take the precious article of clothing and tuck them under my arm.
He smiles, wetting his bottom lip with his tongue. I hold myself back from crashing my lips into his. They're just too green, too fake, too… Capitol.
"Well, I'm not exactly giving them to you for free. Everything costs these days, Ms. Mellark. And one of us is a little overdressed."
"Wash off that stupid makeup then and we'll be even."
His expression changes. Have I gone too far insulting by his fashion choices? His jaw clenches, then releases. "Violet, either you get those clothes off now or I'm going to make certain you're soaking wet in more than one area on your body," he growls.
~ Changed a few ages, will add a few characters, could use help writing good lemons if anyone wants to volunteer ;)