Chapter 20

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  ''So, what do you think?'' Finnick calls from the hallway downstairs, his voice echoing off the walls.

I close the door and go back onto the upstairs corridor. I lean over the banister, looking straight down over the spiral staircase. ''It's elegant, I guess.'' I shrug, not letting on how impressed I am.

The Victors' houses in District 4 are grand, more so than District 12. Everything's wooden, smooth, silky. The wooden handrail with tiny pearls set it it lines the staircase, pearly and iridescent. When I look out of the large window above the living room, I'm met with wide open space; the sea so close I feel I could touch it if I leaned out far enough.

''You guess?'' Finnick echoes. I sigh, roll my eyes and descend the staircase, one hand on the rail, the other holding as if I'm royalty - although I'm far from it. When I land at the entrance hall, Finnick is stood there, hand on hip and raised eyebrows. ''Guess?''

I mock his expression. ''Yes.''

He glares at me for a brief second then relaxes. ''So, since you've finally seen you're adequate new home, why don't I give you a tour?''

''A tour?''

''A tour.'' he grins wickedly then proceeds to take my hand again and lead me out of the doorway, letting it slam shut behind me.

''Where are we going?!'' I shout over the wind as he leads me out of the Victor's Village and up the hill to a cliff. ''A CLIFF?''

''Why not?'' he yells back.

What is wrong with him?

When we reach the top - finally - I'm breathless. Partially from running up a hill behind a twenty-four year old man with mystery and partially from the view: ocean, sand, sky. It's the same beach I walked across in my last visit to District 4. I leave Finnick behind and step closer, my footsteps slow as I go further to the edge, dropping down and sitting on the soft grass, dangling my legs dangerously over the edge of the cliff - so close to the sea, so close to freedom. I close my eyes as I feel Finnick sit down beside me.

~Finnick's p.o.v~ (a.n. let's try it ik)

I watch her, lips parted, eyes closed. I smile to myself as I take in her beauty. I never lost her - never. It might have been years we were parted for, but I kept track of her when she was reaped. I swore to myself when she left I'd never forget the name Vivianna Everly.

~sixteen years ago~

I was at the beach, picking up sea glass from the sand. It was a typical job of District 4, although it took forever. I sighed, picking up another piece of glass, this time larger than the others in my bag. It was warm, but not too hot to handle. I turned it over in my hand, surprised by the smoothness of the edges. Most likely worn down by the waves. The other side was even shinier, reflective almost. I held it up, finding my confused face staring back at me through it. I tilted it upwards slightly, inspecting my hair.

''You're too vain, you know that right?'' I jumped, dropping the glass startled at the sound of another voice. I turned to see a small girl, eyebrow raised looking at me.

''Oh..uh...'' I stammered, bending down to pick the glass back up, thankfully still in tact. I cleared my throat. ''I was just looking.''

''Uh-huh, sure you were,'' she nodded sarcastically.

''Finnick Odair,'' I held my free hand out to her, ignoring the remark. She took it, gingerly, her skin paler in comparison to my golden toned skin.

''Vivianna Everly.''

''Pretty...I doubt I'd forget a name like that.'' I winked jokingly.

''Ew, what are you five?'' she giggled, quickly drawing her hand back.

''Hey!'' I cried indignantly. ''I'm
eight!''

''Ah, sorry,'' she nodded again, not meaning it. ''I'm five.''

''Well, my little five year old friend, why don't you stop tormenting me and help me collect sea glass? Or are you too weak?''

She scoffed and rolled her eyes. ''Dream on, pretty boy.''

I could tell it would be the start of a wonderful friendship.


~~

I sigh, causing Vivianna to open her eyes, fluttering her lashes as the sudden brightness. She looks at me.

''What?''

''Nothing.''  


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