A/N: So yay! I got the first chapter of the sequel done! *Mini party* Basically this is set a year after the last chapter of Torn Between, so, well, enjoy! Also if you've clicked to read this without having read Torn Between, I'd strongly suggest reading it first. A lot of stuff won't make sense if you don't.
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Chapter One-Oreos and Drinks
Cato: D12 Primary School: 3:30pm
"No, no, no, you're doing it wrong," the little boy with pink, chubby cheeks says. I frown at him, my knees nearly touching my chin in the plastic red seat designed for a five year old. He takes the half eaten biscuit out of my hand and puts it down on the table, shaking his head in exasperation. "There's a trick."
"A trick?" I say slowly, questioning. "To eating a biscuit?"
"Duh," the boy says. "Have you ever read the front of the packet?"
"Uh . . . "
"Look, it's simple," the boy says, holding a fresh chocolate biscuit out on his flat palm. "You twist it." He twists around the top of it and pulls it off, showing me the unbroken top before continueing. "You lick it." He licks away the icing in the middle. "Then you dip it." He presses both pieces back together, dips it in his milk and eats it.
"Yeah, I think I'll just eat it normally," I say. A dark look passes over the kid's face and he pushes his glass of milk toward me and holds out another Oreo.
"Twist it. Lick it. Dip it," he says in an angry tone that actually makes me slightly frightened.
"Peeeeettaaa," I call warily, keeping my eyes on the creepy child at all times.
"What?" I hear Peeta call back from the storeroom, his voice slightly muffled through the shut door.
"When does this kid's parents come again?" I ask.
"Um, about five more minutes." Peeta comes back into the room with two cardboard boxes balanced ontop of each other held tightly in his arms. I can just about see strands of his blond hair sticking out from behind the boxes. "Why? Eager to leave?"
"Kind of, yeah," I reply, raising a worried eyebrow as the kid points at me, the milk, then drags his finger across his throat. Peeta sighs and dumps the boxes on his desk.
"Are you making people uncomfortable again Clap?" he asks, walking over to us and ruffling the evil child's black hair.
"No Mr. Mellark," Clap replies, smiling innocently and batting his eyelashes. My jaw drops at his change of personality. He dropped from demon child to angel kid in 0.3 seconds. "I was just sharing my cookies with Cwato." Cwato? What the hell is that? This boy is diabolical.
"That's nice." Peeta smiles at me and shrugs before he moves back to his desk to stick some paintings up onto a notice board, the scowl immediately returning to Clap's face. I hastily get out of the seat and hurry over to join Peeta. I frown at the piece of paper he's currently holding of a stick person with a rotonned belly and stick like hair. The words MY MOM are written in pink below the figure's feet. Peeta chuckles at the drawing and writes Anna in the bottom corner.
"That's supposed to be art?" I scoff.
"They're young. They still have a lot to learn. You need to nurture talent from a young age," Peeta replies, pinning it to the notice board.
"That's not talent, that's a balloon waiting to burst," I say.
Peeta chuckles and shakes his head. "They're kids Cato, what do you expect? The Mona Lisa?" A frown forms on my face and I glare at his sarcastic tone. "Plus this is only the grade one class. I also teach the grade sevens. They're . . . better."
"Better?" I question, quirking an eyebrow at him.
"Okay, they're alright. Sort of. Talent is few and far between you know Hadley," Peeta says. He takes another pile of papers out of one of the boxes and shuffles through them quickly.
"You know, I sort of fancy myself as a painter," I say. I try not to show my intial reactions to half of the kid's paintings on my face as Peeta examines each one. My statement makes him momentarily pause his movements before resuming them just as quickly as he had stopped them.
"Really?" he asks. I can't help smiling as he tries to hide the disbelief in his voice.
"Oh yeah," I reply. "Although, in a more unconventional sense."
"Oh? And what's that then?"
I look back at Clap the Devil's Child. The boy's back is to us, his arm moving furiously as he scribbles a blank sheet of paper with an orange crayon, milk and oreos sitting right beside the page. I walk around to the other side of Peeta and lower my head so my lips are inches away from his ear. He sucks in a shaky breath at my proximity.
"It's a rare method, most artists don't even use it because they're too corwardly to do so but you know me, I don't know the meaning of cowardly. It's the use of a human body instead of a canvas." Peeta glances at me out of the corner of his eye as I speak, curious to what I'm implying.
"Meaning . . . ?" he asks.
"Meaning as soon as this kid's cleared off, I'm going to take those paints over there, put them on one of those wooden thingys like a proper artist and show you exactly what I mean when I say using the human body as a canvas." I trail my index finger down his chest before pulling away, showing him what I'm thinking and grinning at his flushed face.
"I hate you," he mutters. At first I'm confused but soon realize what's wrong with him when moves round to the other side of the desk and sits down on the wheeled chair, pulling himself forward so that his lower half is covered up underneath. It takes a lot for me not to laugh.
Clap's mother soon arrives to collect him and Peeta still sits pressed up against his desk, unable to move. "Good afternoon Mr. Mellark," the woman says as Clap shrugs his backpack on. "Thank you for looking after Clap for me."
"No problem Mrs. Davis. He was no bother," Peeta replies, pretending to be doing some paper work so that he doesn't have to get up. "Any time you want him watched again, I'm always free." Pff, always. Over my head body if I have to wait on him nearly every day of the week with oreo crazed Clap for company.
"Are you alright Mr. Mellark?" Mrs. Davis asks. God, the Mr. Mellark thing gets to me every single time. It even sounds hot coming from the mouth of the mother of the spawn of Satan. "You look kind of flushed."
"Huh?" Peeta asks, pretending to not have heard her. "Oh, no, I'm fine."
"Are you sure?" I ask, grinning. "Miss. Davis is right. You do look sort of flushed Mr. Mellark." Peeta glares at me and I wink at him.
"Yes Cato, I'm sure. Thank you for the concern though," he says through clenched teeth.
"Well, I better go," Mrs. Davis says, taking Clap's hand and leading him out. "Thanks again." I wave goodbye and shut the door behind them. When I turn around the glare on Peeta's face could stop a clock.
"I'm going to kill you," he says.
"No you won't," I reply. "You looovvveee meee."
"What am I supposed to do with this?!" He points underneath the table and I chuckle at his frustrated expression. I sweep around the desk and sit down ontop of it and push his chair out from underneath with my foot. The visible bulge in his jeans confirms my suspicions of his last ten minutes sitting tight against the desk.
"I could take care of it for you," I say, wiggling my eyebrows at him teasinly.
"What? In a Grade One classroom?!" Peeta scoffs. "You're joking right?"
"Come on, be adventurous," I tease. Peeta rolls his eyes and pushes himself back and forth on the wheeled chair.
"I let you 'take care of it' on the kitchen table last night," he says. "Where we eat might I add. I think that's adventurous enough for now."
"Aw come on, you loved it didn't you?"
"That's besides the point!"
"You sure?" I ask. "I could get the paints out you know-"
"Uh, no thanks, the kids use those. There are many things I'll let you try Cato but I refuse to let you ruin my ability to show a kid how to paint-which is, like, a quarter of my job requirements you know-just because you want to use a human canvas! Which, by the way, I still don't fully get!"
"Let me elaborate," I say, grabbing his legs and pulling him toward me on the seat. I pull him until he plants his feet on the desk and stops me. I quirk an eyebrow at him and he quirks his own back. He's close enough that his knees are slightly bent and-if he wasn't being so damn stubborn by leaning back on the seat so that the whole back pad reclines back-his face would be inches from my own. "What I meant by using the human body as a canvas was a slightly cleaner version of what I was really talking about since there was a child present."
"So what did you really mean?" he asks, folding his arms and crossing his ankles.
"I meant-in shortest terms-I was going to paint on you."
Peeta's eyebrows shoot to his hairline and he sighs. "I had a feeling you meant something like that."
"Well, mini Peeta certainly did," I say, gesturing to his current perdiciment. He scowls and pushes back so that the chair slides away.
"I keep trying to think of old people to quell it but you won't shut up!" Peeta says. I grin and plant my foot on the seat and push it so that it spins in a 360 circle.
"Just imagine it baby, the cold paint tickling your skin as I run it so agonizingly slowly down your body-"
"The bristles of the brush sweeping along your jaw and down your neck-"
"I'm not listening!" I grin as he plants his hands over his ears and shuts his eyes tight.
"Down, down, down until it reaches and circles your hipbones-"
"La La La La La La! I can't hear you!"
I pull his hands away from his ears and yank his legs back towards me again. "Stop being such a baby and just kiss me already," I demand. Peeta rolls his eyes but does as I ask and kisses me. I sneak my hand around his neck and deepen it, rolling the seat closer to me. He's so close now that his legs are either side of me and his feet are inches away from the other end of the desk.
His hands slide up my chest and wind around my neck when I slide my tongue into his mouth and he sighs into my mouth. I inch my hand up his thigh and under his shirt, making him gasp as my cold hand touches his warm skin.
"WHOA! What did I just walk into?!" A voice exclaims behind us. Peeta immediately bolts away in shock and rolls backwards into the wall. I hang my head in exasperation before turning around.
"Goddamn it Clove!" I say. "You really need to work on your timing! Jeez."
"Sorry Cato, not my fault if you have the self control of an ape," Clove says, holding her hands up and approaching the desk. "I'm here to do my job unlike some people."
"I'm doing my job!" I protest. "I'm keeping an eye on a potential stalker victim!"
"Who also happens to be your boyfriend," Clove points out. "Not much of a challenge really, is it?"
"He isn't doing his job either!" I say, pointing at Peeta, who lightly kicks me in the knee.
"Yes, very likely because you were distracting him," Clove replies. "Am I correct Peet me ol' pal?"
"100% correct as always Clover," Peeta answers. Their nicknames for each other are ridiculous and yet catchy. Both of them met each other when Clove and I were assigned the job of keeping an eye on Peeta and they immediately got on like a house on fire.
"Wait till' you see what I made!" Clove says, dropping a plastic bag onto the table.
"What?" Peeta and I ask at once.
"Well you know the way you said that you discovered that gay bar just outside the District?" she asks, jumping onto the desk to sit beside me.
"Yeah," we both say.
"And that you were thinking of checking it out?" she continues.
"Uh-huh," I say.
"Wait, we are?" Peeta asks.
"Well, yeah," I reply.
"Don't worry Peeta, he tends to do this," Clove says. "Making decisions without informing you. You'll get used to it. Plus I'm coming too!"
"So what's this to do with your job then?" I ask.
"Shut up Hadley," Clove snaps.
"So what's in the bag?" Peeta asks.
"You'll love these," Clove replies. "I found a shitload of those bejeweled diamond things in my attic and I know you've been saying that Peeta's been needing jeans-"
"I have jeans," Peeta interuppts. "It's Mr. Perverted Mind there that tells people I need them just because I don't have any skinny jeans anymore."
"Well, that does sound like Cato," Clove says. I roll my eyes. That's another thing about them both being in the same room together, they both make jokes to my expense. "Still, these are skinny jeans and I also managed to get my hands on some hot glue! The end product being-" She pulls a pair of jeans out of her bag and holds them in the air with a flourish-"Peeta's clubbing pants!"
The front of them look pretty normal but when she turns them around I have to bite back a laugh. Across the backpockets (a.k.a the ass of the pants) Clove has stuck thousands of pink sparkly jewels spelling out, 'HOT ASS'.
"Oh my god! They are amazing!" I laugh, unable to hold it back anymore. "You're totally wearing them tonight Peeta!"
"Hold on, we're going tonight?" Peeta asks.
"Sure, why not?" Clove asks. "It's a Friday! Live a little grandpa!" I take the jeans off her and examine them more closely. "I also got an 'I'M SEXY AND I KNOW IT' tank top, an 'MY BOYFRIEND'S HOTTER THAN YOURS' shirt and an 'I'M NOT GAY BUT I'M READY TO PARTY HARD' short dress."
"How many sequin jewels did you find exactly?"
"I told you. A shit load."
"Oh and that explains everything."
"Uh-huh. Look, I gotta go and get ready but pick me up at half eight, okay?" Clove says.
"Okay Clove, see you then," I say as she heads to the door.
"Bye Clover," Peeta calls.
"See ya Peet! Enjoy the pants!"
I grin and look at Peeta, hooking my finger under his shirt collar and pulling him up to me once Clove has left. "Now I'm even more excited for tonight," I whisper into his ear before softly nipping it.
"Uh-huh." Peeta moans quitely as I pepper kisses down his neck. I reach out and grab a stray paintbrush up from the desk. I pull back and hold it up to his eyes, brushing it along the tip of his nose, making him shiver.
"Now, where were we?"
"Look at you guys!" Clove says, coming out of her house in her bejewled short dress. Her hair is piled up in a dark bun and two shirts lie in the crook of her arm. "Damn Mellark those jeans look gooooddd! I, if I do say so myself, am amazing. Now"-she holds both of the shirts in each of her hands and hold them out to us-"Who wants to wear what?"
"I think I'll take the 'MY BOYFRIEND IS HOTTER THAN YOURS' one," I say, taking the white shirt with deep red sequins on it.
"Tight jeans not enough? Wanna oggle your boyfriend's arms as well in the tank top?" Clove teases as Peeta sheepishly takes the tank top.
"Like you won't stare either," I tease back. Clove rolls her eyes and straightens out my shirt once I have it on. Peeta turns on his heel and heads back down the path to the car.
"Hey Mellark!" Clove calls down to him.
"What?" he asks.
"You've got some paint on your neck!"
Peeta blushes and wipes furiously at his neck where I painted him mere hours ago. The sequins on the back of his jeans glitter in the moonlight and my mouth waters slightly at the way they hug his butt perfectly. Clove slaps me and gives me a get-a-hold-of-yourself look before stalking after Peeta to the car.
After the occurances that happened in club S&P last year, I was worried that Peeta would be nervous and jumpy at the Gay Bar but he actually suprises me by jumping into things and being the one who drags me after him.
"JKD and a Coke!" Clove yells at the bar over the noise of the club. This is her third drink and she's starting to get a bit hammered. She sticks out like a sore thumb as the only woman here but she got into the club by complimenting the man at the door-a stereotypical gay-by saying that she absoloutely loved his shoes. I'm still on my first drink and so is Peeta but Clove downs each of hers like a machine.
I've been to my fair share of gay bars in the past and it's kind of easy for me to notice when people's eyes are wandering over someone they like the look of (I used to be one of them. What? Why not? I was single after all). So I can't help but notice every single person who looks at Peeta in passing in a desirable/lustful way. I don't blame them and I feel kind of proud to be the person who gets to go home with him at the end of the night but it's hard not to punch their faces in and tell them to look at his eyes not his ass.
Even now, the barman is staring at him as he cleans a glass. Peeta, oblvious to the amount of eyes on him, continues to chat to Clove and I about how he's planning to visit Katniss and the kids tomorrow. Clove notices the many wandering eyes too and the cheeky bitch keeps glancing at me and sniggering.
"You can come too if you want Cato. The kids love you," Peeta says.
"I'd love to seem them again," I reply. "As long as none of them tell me off for not eating an oreo right."
"Why? Who did that?" Clove asks.
"There's this kid in his class who's mum works late and has to stay behind an extra ten minutes and I swear to god he's the spawn of satan," I explain.
"Aw, Clap isn't that bad," Peeta says.
"Clap? What sort of name is that?" Clove sniggers.
"Says Cloverfield Clove," I say.
"Shut up Catorie," Clove snaps.
"Catorie?" Peeta asks, his eyes wide in shock. Clove laughs and sips her drink, playing with the free yellow umbrella that came in the glass.
"Oh yeah," she says. "Didn't he tell you? His name's Catorie."
"No it's not Clove," I say through clenched teeth. "I changed it."
"Oh yes, that's right, he 'changed' it," Clove says, winking at Peeta who nods in understanding. "But what did your Mama call you?" She holds her hand up to her ear and I sigh.
"Catorie," I mutter.
"Catorie," I repeat a little louder.
"Huh? Can't hear you!"
"My mother called me Catorie!" I snap.
"See?" Clove says truimphantly. "Catorie Hadley."
"You know, I'm starting to regret bringing you," I mutter, downing the rest of my drink and ordering another one. Peeta grins but tries to hide it by covering his face with his hand.
"If it makes you feel any better, I'm named after a bread," he puts forward. "And so are my brothers, Wheat and Rye." Clove nearly chokes on her drink and I laugh as she nearly coughs up a lung. While I'm hitting her back to stop her from dying, a drink is put down in front of Peeta.
"It's from this guy," the barman explains. "He wants to stay annoymous though."
"Really?" Peeta frowns, eyeing the drink as if it's an alien item in front of him. "That's strange . . . it's my favourite drink and everything . . ."
"Can't you just tell us who?" Clove asks excitedly. "I wanna know who the admirer is so I can shake his hand for making Catorie here green with envy!"
"Stop calling me that Clove or I swear to . . . " I trail off as my phone bleeps. I pull it out of my pocket and open up the text message. It's a photo. Of us. Right now. At the bar. We're all staring at the drink on the bar in front of Peeta. Below it is two words:
I look up and my eyes lock across the club to the doorway. Standing there in the doorway is Finnick Odair. My stomach drops into my stomach and my jaw drops open. It's been nearly a year since he escaped from my clutches! I thought he was going to leave us alone! Obviously this is not the case. He grins at me before nodding at Peeta and miming drinking up. A group of people suddenly pass the door and when I can finally see it again . . .
Clove is still probing the barman for info on who sent the drink while Peeta stares into the distance dreamily, messing about mindlessly with the umbrella in the glass. They didn't see Finnick . . . at all.
"Are you OK?" Clove suddenly asks, a frown furrowed on her face. I look back up to the empty doorway where Finnick stood mere moments ago, my mind whirling. Peeta sighs heavily and sticks the umbrella in his hair, his eyes drooping shut. We've barely been in here an hour and he's already tired. Jeez, he's not a clubbing person is he?
But the comfort that he's here with me and that he's safe is enough for me. I pull his seat closer to mine and let him rest his head on my shoulder. Clove continues asking the barman a million and one questions about the drink sender while Peeta falls asleep on my arm. But I can't settle again.
For the rest of the night my eyes keep flicking back to the doorway. Watching, waiting, daring for Odair to come back.
But he doesn't and I'm not sure if this fact comforts me or unnerves me.
I keep Peeta close for the rest of the night and keep a look out anyway, not telling him about what I saw because I don't want to scare him or make him freak out. Because if there's one thing for sure, it's this:
Finnick Odair is back. And he's back for one thing and one thing only:
A/N: Like Finnick's entrance? I quite like it ^-^
Please R&R, thanks! :D