"Come on, Katniss, what else could you possibly have going on Friday night that is more important than helping out a friend?"

Katniss glared at her friend in disbelief. "Sorry if my definition of 'helping out a friend' doesn't include 'picking up skanks at a party.'" She pulled her textbook out from underneath Peeta's elbows, causing them to loudly bang against the desk. "Besides, isn't that what you have Delly for?"

Peeta groaned. "Yeah, but ever since she started hooking up with what's his name-"

"Thom."

"Right, 'Thom,'" he corrected himself with dramatic air quotes. "Ever since she started hooking up with him she doesn't want to go out with me anymore."

"Shocker," Katniss answered without looking up from her notes.

It wasn't until his shadow blocked her ability to read that she looked up at him. He was giving her his absolute best puppy dog eyes, which only ever worked because his eyes were impossibly blue and his lips were ridiculously plump. He knew she hated that stupid look but would give into it instantly. It was one of the many things he had perfected over their years of friendship and only pulled it out when necessary.

She sighed heavily. "Fine."

He threw his fist in the air in celebration. "Katniss, you won't regret this! I swear, I will help you get laid so hard in return!"

"You know me so well, Mellark," she replied, rolling her eyes.

He leaned in close, his face inches from hers. "I know it's been a while since you've had a good roll in the hay."

She smacked the side of his head. "From what I've heard it's been a while for you, too. Losing your touch?"

"All the more reason to get a new wingman…er…woman," he answered with a dazzling smile.

"I hate you," she mumbled. "What time is this stupid party of yours?"

"You won't regret this, Everdeen. I swear." He kissed her cheek and punched her shoulder. It took her a while to get used to his charm and free-flowing signs of affection, not just toward her but to all his friends. The first time he hugged her, she punched him. Then there was that awkward period in high school where she thought he was more interested in her than she originally believed. She couldn't lie, the idea of being on the arm of 'Peeta Mellark' made her stomach twist unexpectedly. The fleeting crush was quickly squashed when she caught him making out with Madge Undersee at a party.

Since that night, she only ever saw Peeta as a friend and it worked for them. She stopped reading into his touches or the way he always volunteered her to sit on his lap on their crowded drives to the lake in the summer or how they ended up in adjoining dorms at college.

As he sauntered off, giving a high five to a random student who called his name, she shook her head and laughed. She rarely went out with him or any of their other friends, so she was secretly a little excited to see the "pussy champ" put his infamous charm into action.


She already downed two shots of whiskey by the time he knocked on her own door to pick her up.

Peeta let out a long whistle. "Holy shit, Everdeen, if I didn't know you better, I'd put you on my radar tonight."

"Like you'd be able to get me home." She slid a full shot glass across the counter to him. They both swallowed the liquid and she smirked when he grimaced. "Really, Mellark? You're losing credibility points with me here."

He poured and quickly swallowed another shot and inspected the bottle. "Maybe if you didn't drink such terrible shit."

She snatched the bottle from his hand and slid it back into the freezer. "Shut your hole or you'll be flying solo tonight."

"Don't threaten me, Goose." He threw his arm around her shoulder. "Come on, let's introduce you to society you sexy thing."

"Ugh" she escaped from under his hold. "You did NOT just call me sexy."

He slapped her ass as she slipped her flats on. "I'm calling it like I see it. I may not even have to try to get you some tonight." He laughed and held the door open for her.

"Don't think acting like a gentleman will help you," she warned. She grabbed his arm and pulled him close to her. "Seriously, Peeta, don't leave me there. I'll walk you and your lucky lady home, I just can't be there without you. Stay with me?"

His smile was softer and he wrapped a stand of her hair around his finger. "Always. We'll look after each other."


The music from the frat house was completely overwhelming, as was the stench of beer and weed. Peeta held firm on Katniss' waist as they entered and he greeted people. He slowly directed them both to the keg. "Have you ever been to one of these?" he shouted. When she shook her head no, he brought his lips to her ear. "Do not let anyone else fill up your glass, don't take shots with anyone unless you watch them make it, don't smoke anything anyone offers you, and don't let any of the Brothers show you their rooms, got it?"

She swallowed hard and nodded. She knew he was just looking out for her, reminding her of the things she often reminded her girlfriends of when they went out, but his voice had a tone of finality to it.

"And if you start feeling drunk or 'off' or tired, you come find me. No questions." Then he smiled and pulled her hand. "Let's test your skills wingwoman." They navigated through the crowded party, past a handful of additional kegs to the backyard. It was less crowded and less noisy, which Katniss was grateful for. He nodded his head to a group of girls and handful of guys who stood around a table.

"How do you know they're available?" Katniss asked.

Peeta just shrugged. "We just go talk to them and find out." He dropped her hand and confidently walked to the group, quickly integrating himself into their conversation. Katniss chugged the rest of her beer and refilled her glass before trudging over herself.

Already she could tell which blonde sister Peeta had his eye on. He was pressed half against her side, half against her back, with an arm draped across her back, resting on the table. She was absentmindedly playing with his fingers and giggling at whatever he was whispering in her ear.

Katniss wasn't 100% sure what she was supposed to be doing until she caught sight of the way a few of the other sisters watched Peeta. She summoned everything she learned from her friends and sent a prayer to the pop culture gods. "So, uh, did anyone see the new Nicholas Sparks movie?"

Peeta sent her a thankful smile as the conversation engulfed the other girls and allowed him to chat with the girl next to him in private. Katniss couldn't really follow the conversation beyond her basic question but she had plenty of experience faking a conversation. She would nod her head and fake disgust about which Kardashian was doing what this time, and pretended to be horrified at the rumours that Miley Cyrus' fiance may have cheated on her. She could feel her brain cells slowly dying from the conversation and made more than a few not-so-subtle glances at Peeta and the blonde.

"So tell me, are you Team Edward or Team Jacob?" A masculine voice murmured in her ear.

She rolled her eyes. "Team Buffy, actually."

The man laughed. "I like you. I'm Bristol."

"Katniss."

Bristol peaked into her cup. "Looks like you need a refill, Katniss. Care to exit the chicken coop and get some more beer?"

"Dear God, yes." She followed Bristol to the keg and allowed him to pour her another cupful.

"How come I've never seen you at one of these get-togethers before?" Bristol asked, taking a long drink of his beer.

"Parties aren't really my scene, to be honest."

"And what changed your mind about this one?"

Katniss glanced back to the table and was surprised to see Peeta watching her, rather than his blonde. She scowled at him and nodded to the sister on his arm. "Just helping out a friend, I suppose."

"Ah so you're the wingman."

"So to speak, I guess."

"And which one of these fine ladies delegated you to second best tonight?" He asked with a smirk.

She bit her lower lip. "Uh, the blonde guy at the table, Peeta."

"No shit? Golden boy needed a wingman? Seems like he's doing just fine on his own tonight."

Katniss glanced back over to where the sister was rubbing her ass against Peeta's crotch and his fingers were hooked into the belt loops at her hips. Katniss felt like she swallowed a rock as she continued to watch them easily interact with each other.

"Uh, yeah, he's not too bad. Would you excuse me? I need to find a bathroom."

"Sure." Bristol pointed into the house, "Second floor, third door on your left."

Katniss was relieved to get away from the situation. She couldn't explain the feeling that overtook her, she just knew she didn't like it one bit. She took a mental inventory of how much she drank that night and while it wasn't a ton, she decided it was enough to blame the feeling on. She rinsed her face in the mirror, hoping the towel on the rack was clean, and made her way back to the backyard.

"Katniss, right?" As soon as she hit the fresh air, she was met face-to-face with Peeta's target. "I'm Glimmer."

Of course that was her name. "Glimmer?"

Glimmer laughed. "Well, it's Gina Lepineski. I just go by Glimmer because there were, like, four Gina's in my pledge class and 'Glimmer' is easier to pronounce than 'Lepineski.'"

Katniss raised her eyebrows but smiled anyway. This was the main reason Peeta brought her along, to chat him up to women. "Glimmer it is, then. Having fun?"

Glimmer shrugged. "I guess. It's definitely more fun than the Diff EQ test I should be studying for, that's for sure."

"Diff EQ?"

"Differential equations. It's one of the last classes in my emphasis, I've just been putting it off. I'm a math education major for 9-12. What about you?" Everything Katniss wanted to hate about this girl she couldn't. Glimmer was beautiful and smart and, by all accounts, a nice enough girl. She wasn't a typical sorority girl, often making fun of the other girls or too-true stereotypes of some of her sisters. "To be honest, I only joined because my actual sister and my mother were both Chi O's." Glimmer rolled her eyes. "They'd kill me if they knew I tried to sabotage my rush week. So, tell me about Peeta. All I've been getting from him are his lines but I want to know the real Peeta Mellark."

Katniss contemplated Glimmer's request while taking heavy swallows from her cup. "Oh, he's great. A really, really funny guy."

"Funny how?" Glimmer crossed her arms, leaned against the side of the house and sipped her beer.

"Oh, he's always pulling really lame pranks on people that he thinks are really funny. Like, this one time, he rigged up a dummy, like one of those CPR dummies, in my bathroom. I swear, I peed my pants when I saw it in the morning," Katniss laughed. She was so pissed when she found out Peeta pulled one on her, but no matter how hard she tried, she could never prank him back. Or live down the "peeing her pants" incident.

"That sounds…" Glimmer forced a smile, "um, fun. That was what, your freshman year?"

Katniss snorted. "No, that was like six months ago. Freshman year he was still doing the saran wrap over the toilet seat gag." She took another drink and watched Glimmer struggle to laugh at what Katniss still thought was hilarious. "But, I mean, he wouldn't be anywhere without his partner in crime."

"Partner in crime?"

"Yea, Finnick Odair, from the swim team? Those two are fucking connected at the hip, I swear. I'm actually surprised Finnick isn't here tonight." She glanced over her shoulder, pretending to look for the swim captain, knowing full well he was away at a meet. "Though, once they get together, they're impossible to tear apart. I think Annie has to lure Finn away with promises of sex. Otherwise I think those two would share a bed." She wondered if she should feel bad admitting these things to a girl she hardly knew. Peeta and Finnick did share an obnoxiously close bond, even if she did exaggerate it a touch.

"Is that so? I didn't realize Peeta was so close to anyone."

Katniss nodded enthusiastically. "They've been friends for forever. I swear, nothing will ever come between them. It's tough being with them unless you're really into sharing your boyfriend, you know?" Katniss wrinkled her nose in disgust. "I don't get it but Annie's pretty cool about being the third wheel most of the time. Hell, she's been that way for the three years she's been dating Finn so maybe you get used to it after while."

Glimmer balked at Katniss' comments. "You know, I never understood why Peeta had been single for so long, he's really a nice guy. But I guess most girls probably couldn't handle that, huh?"

Katniss shook her head. "Nah, but that's why he usually only has one-night stands with them, to be honest. I know most of them want more but he's a real asshole when it comes to calling people back. I mean, I'm his friend and he never returns my calls, let alone some girl he just slept with, you know?"

"Does he have a lot of one night stands?"

"Oh, not really so much anymore," Katniss admitted. She watched Glimmer let out a visible sigh of relief. "But, I mean, I'm sure once that rash clears up, he'll be back to his old tricks." She narrowly avoided the stream of alcohol that Glimmer spit out.

"Oh, I'm sorry, Katniss. I didn't get any on you, did I?"

Katniss wiped her thigh, even though she had quick enough reflexes to miss everything. "Oh, I'll be fine."

"I'm going to go wash myself up. It was…good to talk to you." Glimmer gave her a painful smile and turned to go into the house.

Katniss finished up her beer and shot her cup into one of the overflowing trash cans, cheering to herself when it landed perfectly on top of the pile. She wandered into the house, hoping to find where Peeta had disappeared to. She considered sending him a text but once she was inside, she was instantly crushed by sweaty bodies and could only move forward, toward the front door, without fear of being suffocated or trampled. She saw Glimmer talking to Peeta, gesturing apologetically to where her friends from earlier stood by the front door. She smiled at him and walked away, leaving him with a completely dumbfounded look.

"You should close that trap, Mellark, or you'll catch flies," Katniss joked, lifting his jaw with her finger. "Ready to blow this popsicle stand?"

Peeta nodded and started the trek to the front door, leaving Katniss where she stood. She scowled and chased after him. Once outside, she slapped his arm. "Hey! What about the part where you don't leave me?"

"What about the part where you actually act like a wingman and help your friend out, huh?" He spun around to face her, completely oblivious to the handful of people who were trying to go into the house and now had to dodge around him.

Katniss wrinkled her forehead. "What are you talking about, Peeta? I did what you told me to do. I distracted the friends, I talked to the girl, what else was I supposed to do?"

"I just don't get it. It seemed like such a sure thing. She was so into me when I sent her over to you, then she made up some cock and bull story about not leaving her friends or having some test to study for. She wouldn't even give me her number." He spun back around and began walking back to the dorm. "I will say that I'm not sorry for what I said to Bristol earlier"

She ran to catch up with him. "Woah woah woah. What did you say to Bristol?"

Peeta shrugged. "I told him to stay away from you."

"You did what?" She grabbed his shoulder and spun him to her. "Why the hell would you do that? I thought the plan was to 'get me laid so hard.'"

"Not with a guy like that."

"Like what? Someone who actually talked to me? Who thought I was funny? Attractive? What?"

Peeta rolled his eyes. "He's a Brother, Katniss. Of course he's going to say those things to you. You've never been to these kinds of parties, that's why guys here do."

Katniss huffed. "So it's ok for you to pick up some random bimbo but I can't get picked up? Nice. Any other misogynistic rules you want to fill me in on?"

He ran his hand through his hair and groaned. "That's not what I mean, Katniss and you know it! Guys like Bristol they…they know what to tell a girl to get into their pants. They find girls they think are easy and sweet talk them all night. They're like fucking predators. They don't give a shit about you and as soon as you give the indication that you're not interested, they move the fuck on. I told him you weren't one of those girls."

Katniss stared at him, still angry that he felt the need to step in and "save" her when she was fully capable of telling some guy off as it was. She was also slightly embarrassed if what he was saying was true. Did that mean she looked easy or vulnerable? She didn't have reason to doubt Peeta, he had rushed a frat his freshman year and quit without explanation. And it would explain the dirty looks Bristol threw her while she was talking to Glimmer. "I didn't know you said anything to him."

"He's not worth your time, Katniss. I'll find you someone worthy of that mythical vag of yours."

She punched his shoulder. "Jesus, Peeta, do you have to be so damn crass about it?" They both laughed and continued down the road toward campus. Katniss concentrated on kicking a small pebble a few feet ahead of her and listened to Peeta's clunky gait. His footsteps always were a bit heavier after he had been drinking; it was the only sure way she could test his tolerance. "So Glimmer seemed…nice."

Peeta scoffed. "Yea, real nice. Smart, funny, pretty, ambitious." He sighed. "Too good for me, apparently."

"Don't say that," Katniss looped her arm through his. "Maybe she just was…intimidated or something?"

"Yea, right, Gina Lepineski does not get intimidated. That girl could take on anyone without breaking a sweat. I must have really screwed up this time." He shook his head and Katniss felt her stomach drop. Shit.

"You didn't," she answered quietly. "I did."

"What are you talking about? She said you guys had a good talk."

Katniss bit her lower lip. Double shit. "I may have said some things I shouldn't have."

He stopped in his tracks. "What did you say?"

"Um, I told her that you like to pull pranks, like the CPR dummy in my bathroom. She, uh, she wasn't so amused with that one. More amused than the saran wrap freshman year," Katniss weakly joked. Peeta wasn't biting. Actually, she watched his jaw clench slightly. "And, uh, I told her that you were really close with Finn. Practically inseparable and that Annie could only get him away with promises of sex."

"Please tell me that's all you said. Those are things I can explain away." He stared at her when she remained silent. "Katniss Everdeen. What else did you tell her?"

"That you didn't call your one-night stands back."

He groaned. "Katniss!"

"And that your rash hadn't completely cleared up."

"You have got to be fucking kidding me! Katniss, what the fuck were you thinking? Those aren't things you say to anyone! Even if they're the damn grenade!"

Katniss flinched. Peeta had never yelled at her before; she couldn't even think of a time when he had been angry with her. Even when she screwed up in the past, he never made her feel bad about it, he always excused it away and acted like it didn't matter. She didn't know how to respond to this Peeta.

"Seriously. What the fuck were you thinking? I mean, you are the worst wingman ever! Why did I even think you could do this?"

She didn't like this Peeta. But she sure as hell wasn't going to let him stomp all over her. "Hey, step off, Mellark!" she yelled back. "I know you wanted to get laid tonight and I'm sorry that I ruined your chance with the walking STD!" She was being irrational; she was fairly certain Glimmer wasn't carrying anything. But she was too flustered with her so-called-friend to care. She stomped down the street, not caring that she had just walked away from him.

He eventually caught up to her outside her dorm building. He didn't say anything, but he yanked each door open and slammed each shut, following her to her room. "You can't follow me in here!" She yelled when she reached her door.

"Oh no," he warned, blocking her door with his shoulder. "We aren't done with this conversation."

"What do you want, Peeta? You've already told me I'm a terrible wingman, ok? Fine! I won't go out with you again! I'm sorry I ruined your shot with Miss Perfect!"

He stepped to her, trapping her against her kitchen counter. "Just tell me one thing. Why?"

She closed her eyes and turned her head. "I don't know," she whispered.

"No." His voice was low and commanding. "You don't do things without a reason. Why?"

She shook her head and exhaled loudly. "I don't know! I just…I saw you with her and you were so happy and she was so happy and I was just….ugh! I don't know, ok? She was so perfect and smart and pretty and funny and I just didn't want you with her!"

"Why not? You should want me to be with someone like her."

"I do! Just not…her." Katniss slipped out from under his arm and paced around her living room. "Why did you say anything to Bristol instead of letting me figure it out my own? I can handle myself, you know."

"I know you can. I told you, I know what guys like him are like. You deserve better than him."

"So do you!"

"I deserve someone better than Glimmer? Like who, Katniss?" He demanded.

"Like me!" Her eyes bugged out as she heard herself and she clamped her hand over her mouth. She didn't really mean that, did she? She didn't dislike Glimmer because she wanted Peeta. She quelled that ridiculous crush years ago, why was it all of a sudden making a comeback? "I mean-"

She watched in horror as his face never changed. He stood, glued to his spot, unable to tear those piercing blue eyes off of hers. He never knew about her high school crush. Even if he had, every girl had a crush on Peeta Mellark in high school, so it didn't mean anything. But this - this sudden, random outburst that he deserved someone like her- meant something. And from the way her heart pounded in her stomach and eyes began to sting meant that it wasn't good. She guessed this was the moment that their friendship was ruined.

Looking back, Katniss would realize that Peeta broke first. That he was the one who bounded over to her, held her face in his hands and kissed her like she had never been kissed before. That it was his tongue that first entered her mouth and his teeth that first grazed her bottom lip. But as it was, she couldn't tell whose limbs were whose as they stumbled blindly into her bedroom, ripping clothes off of one another in a hungry effort to touch skin on skin. They tripped over jeans and kicked shoes hard against the wall as he laid her back on her bed, kissing down her neck, lips following the feather-light touch of his fingers. She gripped his muscular back, groaning when he took her breast in his mouth, swirling his tongue around her sensitive skin.

His fingers slid over her stomach, dancing along her hip bones to the apex of her thighs. His thumb brushed against her clit and her hips bucked off the bed. With a sly grin, he pressed harder with his thumb and separated her folds. As he curled his finger inside her, coming so close to the one spot she needed, she moaned. Closer and closer to her release, his thumb remained pressed against her clit, his mouth attached to one breast, then the other. Katniss' senses were overwhelming, his touch, his mouth, his scent, all of him with HER was so wonderfully perfect.

She didn't bother muffling the cries she was eliciting. Whoever was on the other side of her single dorm would learn to deal with her noises. As the bliss continued to wash over her and her body relaxed, she heard him search around for his jeans, then the tell-tale sound of a condom wrapper opening.

When he kissed her again, she tangled her fingers through his curls, pulling closer and deeper. He let out a series of soft sighs as her fingernails scratched his scalp and tugged his hair. She needed him impossibly close to her, to prove that this was happening.

Wordlessly, he positioned himself at her entrance. One deep kiss and he was completely sheathed inside her. Their mouths swallowed their throaty groans of pleasure. Katniss wrapped her legs around his lower back, angling her hips up as he pushed into her, deeper with this new position. The sweat dripped off his forehead, mingling with her own. His grunts and her moans filled the room, vibrating off the walls.

Their tension built together, steadily higher and higher until they sucked the oxygen from the room and all that remained lingered between their tangle of limbs. She cried just as loudly when she came and he made an almost silent, yet content, sigh. They remained connected as long as they could, and when he reluctantly pulled out of her to dispose of the used condom, a feeling of emptiness overtook her.

He sat on the edge of the bed and brushed a strand of hair from her face. "Are you going to leave?" She croaked, the first words they had spoken to each other since their fight.

He froze for a moment. "What do you want?"

"Stay with me, Peeta?"

He shifted to the other side and wrapped his strong arms around her. He kissed her temple, the back of her neck, her shoulder, whispering something against her bare skin that she couldn't make out.

Katniss pulled her blankets around them and fell asleep to the gentle tapping of his fingers on her stomach, worried that he would be gone in the morning.

Which he was.


None of their friends knew what had happened between them. Peeta and Katniss silently agreed not to talk about it and they found it relatively easy to fall back into their normal friendship routine. She bit back every twinge of jealousy that reared up when she saw Peeta talking to some beautiful girl. She bit her tongue and even agreed to hang out with the group for Finnick's birthday the next weekend, after he promised Peeta he'd find him some nice pussy.

Sure enough, the house party Finnick hosted for his birthday was swimming with beautiful, if not vapid girls. She even considered apologizing to Glimmer, who came with a different group of friends, to set things right. Apparently Peeta was doing that well enough on his own.

Katniss tossed back the rest of whatever concoction Finnick cooked up and poured herself another cupful. If she was going to do this successfully, she'd need to be distracted. Luckily, Gale, a very attractive friend of Finnick's, made his way to her to strike up a conversation. They laughed at his jokes and her childhood antics with ease.

"So, Katniss Everdeen, what does a guy need to do to impress you on a first date?" Gale asked, casually leaning against the counter.

Katniss grinned, "I've always wanted to do something outdoorsy; hiking, fishing, hunting, something like that."

"Is that so? Well I guess it's a good thing I know of some trails that lead to the best, well-hidden fishing spots, isn't it? How about I pick you up Saturday morning and we make a day of it?"

She opened her mouth to enthusiastically accept his offer when a muscular arm wrapped around her stomach and pulled her back. "Sorry, Glen-"

"It's Gale," Gale corrected.

"Ah. Sorry 'Gale' but Katniss here is going to be busy next Saturday." Peeta's fingers gently tapped on her stomach, causing her heart to race and thighs to clench.

Gale looked between them then shrugged. "It's cool, bro. Katniss, gimme a call if you change your mind." He wandered off and Katniss spun to face Peeta.

"What the hell was that?"

"What?" Peeta asked, in his best naive voice. She glared at him, not buying his innocence. "Oh that?" He nodded his head toward where Gale was chatting with Finnick. "You looked like you needed an out. And as your wingman, I felt it was my duty to save you from him."

"Save me? From the perfectly nice guy who I share almost every interest with and is like the male version of me? Yes, THANK YOU for saving me from the one guy here I wanted to be around."

He shrugged. "Why would you want to date the male version of you? The female version is bad enough."

"Keep digging, asshole." Katniss spat, needing to be away from him right now. Too bad Peeta wasn't having any of that. He grabbed her arm and wouldn't let her run off. "What? What do you want, Peeta? You can't just do this!"

He leaned down to her ear, "You want to do this here? In front of everyone?" She relented and allowed him to pull her into a spare bathroom down the hall, away from most of the party-goers.

As soon as he closed and locked the door, she turned on him. "Seriously, Peeta, what the hell do you think you're doing? Is this because of what I said to Glimmer? Fine, we're even. Happy now?"

"No. No, I'm not happy watching you get on with someone like that."

"Someone like what? What is wrong with thisguy who is interested in me?" When Peeta didn't answer, she pushed him further. "Come on, Peeta, tell me. Because there has to be something wrong with him, right? I mean, no normal guy would want to talk to me or ask me out, apparently. So lay it on me, what's wrong with him? I'd love to know."

Peeta let out an exasperated breath. "There's nothing wrong with him, ok? There's not."

"Then why did you feel the need to break up a perfectly fine conversation and my chance of having an actual date?"

"Because I don't want you with him! I want you with me!" He reached for her, kissing her again, sending charges through her body as she melted into him.

"No!" She pushed away from him. "No, Peeta, you don't get to do this! You don't get to flirt with your perfect little girl then cockblock me! You don't get to leave me in the morning and then say you want me! It's not fair!" She was seething, angry at him for thinking he could treat her like one of his bimbos. Angry at herself for being angry at him for thinking he'd change. Frustrated because all she wanted right now were his lips on hers again. So that's what she did. She pulled him to her and before she could comprehend their actions, he was peeling her clothes off and hoisted her onto the bathroom counter. He dropped to his knees and slipped her panties off over her knees, leaving her completely bare to him.

Katniss watched him lick his lips, like a wolf on the prowl, and clenched her legs together. "No," he instructed, prying them open. The boys always joked about how good Peeta's oral skills were but she always shrugged it away as boys bragging. But as soon as his tongue brushed at her center, she realized he wasn't bragging in the least. He ran his tongue slowly from the bottom to the top of her center. Katniss moaned when he sucked her clit into his mouth and swirled his tongue around the bundle of nerves. He reached up, palming her breast, pinching the nipple, and she ran her fingers back and forth over the top of his hair, tugging him closer to her center. His tongue delved between her folds as if outlining every contour of her body.

Her back arched against the cool tile of the counter and pushed herself further into his mouth. Her stomach burned from clenching her muscles whenever he licked or nipped a new spot that only heightened her arousal. His tongue stiffened and thrust into her center, eliciting a loud cry. He'd bring her close to the edge, then change his angle or movement, prolonging her pleasurable torture. Each flick of his tongue weakened her knees and tightened her grip on his hair.

She glanced down under hooded eyes and regretted it almost immediately. Staring up at her from underneath her writhing body were those blue eyes she had seen every night in her dreams since they slept together; the eyes that seemed even more blue with his thick, black pupils. Time froze as waves of pleasure washed over her, forcing her to squeeze her eyes shut so hard she was seeing spots. Her back arched painfully off the counter and as the loud moan erupted from her throat, his mouth was on hers to swallow the sound. It did the opposite as she tasted herself on his tongue and another intense shudder wracked her body. He held her up as she slowly regained feeling in her limbs.

"Um, what uh, what were we fighting about?" He joked, kissing her again.

Katniss rolled her eyes. "Seriously, Peeta, this can't keep happening like this. You can't have me just because you don't want anyone else to. It's already too hard and it's only been the one-"

"Two."

"Fine, two times. But if you're just going to go back out there and be 'Peeta Mellark' and stick your tongue down some other girl's throat, just tell me now so I can go home. Because I can't be around you if you're going to do that." She didn't like this, being exposed in more than one way, to her friend. She slid off the counter and shimmied into her panties and jeans. She turned her back to him to fetch her bra off the floor and quickly wiped her face. She hadn't felt this crappy about her feelings since Peeta kissed Madge in high school. She got over that, she could get over this and he wouldn't need to know anymore than he already did.

"Katniss," he touched her shoulder lightly, causing her to jump. "I wasn't flirting with Glimmer earlier. I was just, um, fixing the problem from last time." His smile relaxed her slightly. "I still have a reputation to uphold even if I'm not interested in upholding it with her."

Katniss just swallowed, still not ready to look at him yet.

"Look, I can't promise that I'm not going to ever flirt with another girl ever again, ok? You know me better than that. And I know you would never actually ask me to be that way. But I'm not going to go 'stick my tongue down another girl's throat' anytime soon." He cleared his throat. "Katniss, will you look at me, please?"

She turned slowly, chewing her bottom lip and holding her t-shirt in her hands. "Why not? I know you're not interested in me. How many times have you rambled about how friends can't be more than that for any length of time?"

He nodded. "That's true, I have said that a lot, haven't I?"

"And I'm not interested in just being your wingman who you take home when you strike out."

"I don't want that either Katniss because, if I'm being honest, you're a pretty terrible wingman, even if you are a fucking fantastic lay. I don't want to have to 'strike out' to get you. I want to get you whenever I want. And I want you to get me whenever you want."

She laughed and walked into his chest, nuzzling her head against his chest. "You're a dick."

"I'm working on that."

"And what about friends not being able to be more?" She asked, looking up at him with genuinely worried eyes.

He pursed his lips. "Eh, we weren't that great of friends to begin with, were we?" He tipped her chin up and pressed his lips to hers. "Really though. You're a terrible wingman."

She slapped his chest. "Please, Mellark, you're even worse."


Thanks to sunfishdunes for looking over this and providing all kinds of sassy comments. And to the Hutcherwives for helping me remember wonderful moments in the history of Joshifer.