Chapter 1 - Katniss POV
When I swim back into consciousness, I can feel myself lying on a cold metal table. There are tubes in my arms and I feel dizzy surrounded by white walls. I can see a figure sitting next to me with his head on his arms, Haymitch, I figured. Haymitch. With that, everything comes flooding back, the games, Rue dying, Cato and the mutts, and Peeta. Peeta who died so I could come back. My body is racked with sobs, and I slowly begin to drift to unconsciousness.
My name is Katniss Everdeen. I am seventeen years old. I am the winner of the 70th Hunger games. No, I am the Victor, cause nobody truly wins in these sadistic, twisted games. There are no winners in the districts. The only winners are the people who die a peaceful and quick death in the arena.
“NO! Fishboy, I will not let him do that to Sweetheart!” I hear someone yell when I slowly wake up, and the smell of alcohol hits my nose. Haymitch, I think presumably.
“Do you think I want this Hay? She doesn’t have a choice! She loves Prim and Snow will use that against her!” PRIM? What’s happening? I hear a familiar voice reply Haymitch.
I begin to groan, stretching my arms, and finding them free of tubes and scars that I got from my games. I open my eyes and catch a glimpse of sea-green eyes and bronze hair. Taking a few seconds to adjust my eyes to the light, I finally recognise him as the 65th Victor of the Hunger Games, The Finnick Odair. He truly is beautif- Wait what is he doing here?
“Katniss Everdeen” He smirks, and brings my hand to his lips. “Finnick Odair at your service. The pleasure will be all yours.” He says with a wink. I turn beet red for some reason. Wait, why am I blushing?
“Sweetheart! Good to see you alive!” Haymitch exclaims while he staggers up to the side of my bed, holding a flask. I can’t help but hug him, the only person that I was familiar with at the moment. Haymitch chuckles and glances at Finnick, What were they talking about? What about Prim? I was just about to ask them when Cinna comes in and congratulates me on my victory. Cinna brings me into another room to dress me up for my interview with Caesar.
“How does it feel to win?” Cinna asks, lifting an eyebrow, while adjusting my dress. I just shrug, I feel dirty and empty. Peeta should be here, not me. I should have died in the Arena.
“I just wished-” I get cut off by Cinna.“You just wished Peeta was here with you, yes I understand Katniss. But sometimes things never do work out just the way we want it to do. And Peeta wouldn’t have wanted you to dishonour his memory with tears.” Cinna says. I sniffle, trying to hide the tears that are threatening to fall. Do not cry. What happened to the Katniss from District 12 that never cried or showed emotions? She’s gone, just like the boy with the bread. Effie comes in abruptly and interrupts us, dragging me away from Cinna. I give him an apologetic look and start to walk with her.
“Oh Katniss! You look ravishing!” I give her a small smile, but I’m sure it doesn’t reach my eyes. Effie escorts me backstage then I am left alone, waiting for my cue to come on stage.
“Katniss Everdeen, the Girl on Fire!” I hear Caesar’s voice boom through the place. His hair and suit is still the midnight blue, his teeth white as ever. I slowly walk towards him and sit down onto the plush white chair next to him. Calm down Katniss. They already love you.
“So Katniss,” he asks me, “How are you feeling?” Scared. Angry. Confused. Tired. Heartbroken. I knew I couldn't say that so I looked for Cinna in the crowd.
“Honestly, I’m kinda hungry.” I say with a small smile. The audience laughs at my response. Look at these people, they think I’m just their puppet. I try to hide my grimace throughout the interview and Caesar talks about how this Hunger Games has been a success and then play the highlights of my games. Then comes the question, I had hoped he would have left out. Caesar leans forward, taking my hand in his and clears his throat so the audience would settle down.
“How are you coping? With losing Peeta?” I tear up a bit and told him how he saved my life with the bread. “Peeta saved my life when I was little, my father had just died and my family had no money to feed ourselves. One day, I was sitting under a tree, waiting for death to take me, when Peeta comes out of the bakery and tosses me a loaf of bread. He saved my life, and I couldn’t save him. And now he isn't here, he died for me.” I didn't have to lie about this, he really did save my life. Caesar gives me a hug out of sympathy and then the interview is over. I go up to my room in the training centre with Effie blabbing about some Capitol gossip and someone’s wedding last week. When the elevator opens, a pair of green eyes welcome me.