The Dinner Party
just a random idea that came to me in a fever dream earlier this week. rated E for explicit smutty smut smut. enjoy!
“You want me to do what?”
Peeta frowned at her foot, wielding the nail polish brush threateningly. “First, I want you to hold still.” Katniss wriggled her toes defiantly but then obliged, hardly daring to breathe when he swiped the coral nail polish onto her big toe in nice, even strokes. It looked perfect, of course. He could always paint better than she could, even nails.
“Seriously, though. You want me to go to a dinner party with you?” she asked. He glanced up at her with a crooked smile before he started painting her next toenail.
“You make it sound like I’ve asked you to strip naked and run around the block or something,” he said, focusing on her toes. She snorted, then clamped her lips shut when he shot her a warning look. Snorting made her foot jiggle, apparently. “It’s just a dinner party. Delly asked everyone to bring a guest–someone, and I quote, ‘interesting.’ So I’m asking you.”
Katniss stared at the top of his head, his blond curls falling across his forehead as he worked. “But I don’t really know her. And what a weird stipulation,” she said with a laugh.
Peeta shrugged. “Delly likes her theme parties,” he muttered, tongue poking out the corner of his mouth as he delicately painted her pinky toe. Satisfied with his work, he shot her a triumphant smile. “And you’re the most interesting person I know.”
She rolled her eyes. “Says the guy who paints nails better than any girl I know.”
He gave her a look of mock offense. “Are you questioning my masculinity? You know how I feel about rigid gender roles.” Then he held up his hand, palm flat, fingers spread. “And who’s got a steadier hand than me?” She kicked playfully at his hand, and he made a noise of protest, grabbing her ankle to place her foot down on the coffee table. “Don’t mess up my hard work.”
Katniss slumped down into the couch, chewing on her lip. “You know I don’t like people. How am I supposed to be interesting around a bunch of strangers?”
Screwing the nail polish bottle shut, Peeta sat back on his hands. “Just think of it as a challenge. See how often you can work into the conversation that dry wit and razor-sharp sarcasm of yours without them realizing you’re insulting them.”
“Do you want people to hate me?” she asked wryly, folding her arms over her chest. He grinned.
“Delly said interesting. She didn’t say anything about likable.” He laughed when she flipped him off, then pushed off the floor to stand up. “I should head home. But I swear, if you just be yourself, people will love you.” She didn’t think it was that simple. Peeta never had to worry about getting people to like him; it just came naturally to him. But she didn’t argue the point, letting him pull her up from the couch. With cotton balls stuffed between her toes, she wobbled after him to the front door. Grabbing his jacket from the coat rack, he turned to her. “So you’ll come?”