I look out of my kitchen window as my children play in the meadow. I think of the skull I stepped on when I was back in District 13, visiting the remains of 12. My children, who don't know they play on a graveyard.
Peeta is at work at the bakery that the refugees built for Peeta while repairing the rest of District 12. Haymitch and the others are at work in the fields getting wheat and other plants. I hunt, but only in the winter when the food is unable to grow.
I look at the clock on the wooden table near the oven. It is almost Two thirty. Peeta gets off at five.
Someone knocks at the door, which is unusual since everyone is working or sleeping. And I rarely get visitors besides Haymitch, Annie, or my mother. I run to the door expecting Annie.
When I open the door, who I see is not what I suspected at all. In fact, I almost think I am dreaming. But it's too real to be a dream. His curls cropped closely to his skull, golden eyeliner still intact, and now I am thinking that it was tattooed on, his string of earrings that outline the bottom of his ear.
I am standing right in front of Cinna.
I am unable to move, or speak. Or do anything at all. I thought he was dead, that's what we all suspected. But he is alive, and looks well fed.
Finally the words come. "Cinna," it's really all I can say. But he starts talking, too.
"Katniss, listen. You have killed Coin and Snow, but no one knows where Snow's granddaughter is. That's not a good thing since she was raised to be evil as well."
I am still confused about how Cinna is still alive. "Cinna, how are you alive? I thought they beat you! I thought that the Capitol beat you to death when they found out that you didn't know anything about the rebellion-,"
"That's not important right now," says Cinna.
"Yes, it is! Your alive!" I am starting to cry now. I hug him tightly and wipe the tears from my eyes. As soon as I am done, Cinna gets back on topic.
"I have been hiding in the woods surrounding the Capitol. Gale brought me in after the War and fed me. We kept seeing Snow's granddaughter, along with about 80 of the remaining Capitol people in the woods with the cameras, but we don't know which district. When I requested to see you so you would know, Gale didn't object. He brought me here in a Hovercraft that wasn't destroyed in the Capitol. We need to find her Katniss, before she and her 'army' of people find the remains of the Captiol and want revenge."
"Why would she want revenge?" I ask, "and if she did, she's only what? Sixteen? What is the worst she can do?"
"She's mad, Katniss, we killed her family. She can kill too. After all, she has Snow's blood in her."
I process this. She does have his blood, she did love him. And I killed everyone she loved. She knows that I loved Gale from the Propos, and how I talked about us being Best friends in the games, she could Kill Gale.
"Gale," I whisper. Cinna nods. "Think about it for a while. If you want to help us, me and the Capitol Rebels, I will be back in 3 weeks to collect you and whoever wants to help."
"Okay," I say. "But Peeta stays. I don't want to loose him again."
Cinna nods. "So, how are you and Peeta?"
"Well, we are better. The Capitol Hijacked him so he would loose the memory of loving me, and to make him think I was the enemy. But his memory is better. We had kids four years ago. He is back."
Cinna stares into the fireplace. "Those kids, in the meadow. They are yours?" Asks Cinna.
"Yes," I say. He looks sad. He says, "Gale figured. He just didn't want to believe it was true. He was almost crying when I got out of the hovercraft."
Gale never cries. Ever. It hits me that he must still love me, after all these years. I look at Cinna and a tear rolls down my face. I remind myself that I don't need Gale's fire, I have that fire, but I did. Before I met Peeta.
Cinna stands. "Well, I better get going. The hovercraft is going to be here any minute." We walk over to the door. Before he leaves, he looks at me and says, "remember, Girl on Fire, I'm still betting on you."
I don't understand, because I am not going into the games. But I realize what he means once he leaves for the hovercraft. Until we find Snow's granddaughter, we are basically still fighting.