Saw this picture and instantly thought of Katniss after the war. So I wrote my (first ever) drabble. This takes place early in their ‘growing back together’ period, and is just a little snapshot of her. Hope you enjoy:
She still wasn’t used to him going to the newly-opened bakery. Hadn’t learned the silence of a house without him. She missed his tread, his whistling, his puttering with paints and baking pans. He’d been working up to this for so long, Katniss could never ask him to stay (always) just because she wasn’t comfortable in the gaping foyer, empty of embellishments but full of ghosts.
Peeta said this would be good for him, and she’d already noticed the change. She was so proud and pleased with his progress, but maybe just a tiny bit jealous too. She still couldn’t go back into the rest of the district, only to the woods, and Katniss wasn’t the one who’d been hijacked, then hijacked back. But he’d always been more resilient, and she’d always learned from his example.
Katniss heaved a sigh, and told herself that her return to what remained of Twelve would come when the time was right. It was something Peeta would say, so she could trust it. She leaned her head against the open door, staring down the road. Peeta didn’t know it, but she’d kept the front entryway open, rain or shine, the entire time he was gone every day. She watched as he left her sight, hand braced on the wooden frame, and then busied herself around the house for as long as possible. But always with the door open, because it seemed too final when it shut. Too uncertain whether he’d ever be able to make it back to her this time. Like the night before the Quell, she felt a dread that if any doors closed between them, they would be separated indefinitely. So the portal stayed open, and more often than not, she sat against it waiting for him.
Peeta didn’t know of course. If he did, he’d never leave, insisting on staying with her until she was comfortable with his absence — which would never happen. Katniss would always be nervous when she didn’t know his exact whereabouts. But this needed to be forced, she needed to teach herself that they could be okay apart, that the world wasn’t closing in on them anymore. That she could go to the woods while he went to the bakery, and he wouldn’t be taken from her the moment she looked away. She wasn’t there yet, but she would be.
Today, she’d even strolled around Victor’s Village. Unable to stand the silence alone for another minute, she’d walked out, propping the door behind her. It was only for half an hour, but it was first time Katniss had left while he was out. The thirty minutes had been spent walking in the grass on the side of the road and picking dandelions.
Peeta would be home soon. Katniss repeatedly scrutinized the path through Victor’s Village for any sign of movement. As soon as she saw his outline on the road, she would jump up, pull the door most of the way closed, and position herself on the couch with the TV tuned to Plutarch’s insipid singing contest, as if she’d been occupied all day.
It wasn’t the most dignified or independent way to behave, and certainly not the healthiest, but it was the most she could manage just now, so it would have to do. One day, she’d step outside Victor’s Village. One day, she’d set foot in the town or Seam again. But the first step was tomorrow.
picture source: x