reasons why haymitch is a

8

Effie Trinket + not being oblivious to the Capitol’s true nature

“I’m not sure. I just wanted to hold them accountable, if only for a moment,” says Peeta. “For killing that little girl.”

“This is dreadful.” Effie sounds like she’s about to cry. “That sort of thinking … it’s forbidden, Peeta. Absolutely. You’ll only bring down more trouble on yourself and Katniss.

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“The mutt. Did I kill it?” Haymitch squeezes his eyes shut. Tries to take a breath.

“That wasn’t a mutt Peeta. It was Katniss.” Peeta stares, unblinking, his pupils oddly large in the brightly lit room.

“No. It was a mutt,” he says, “I know.” It’s too much. Haymitch can’t do this. He backs out of the room before he starts breaking things. But he can’t leave. Not truly. He finds Gale Hawthorne standing in the observation room, his hands clenched on the sill.

“Give me one reason why I shouldn’t go in there and kill him.” Haymitch leans his forehead on the cool glass of the viewing window, wondering why he, who has spent his life avoiding children, ended up with so many teenagers looking to him for guidance.

“He thinks she’s a mutt.” Gale rolls his eyes in disbelief. “It’s true. Listen.” Haymitch reaches over and turns increases the volume on the intercom. The medical personnel have left, and now it’s just Peeta and a studious looking man with a notebook.

“Why are you so sure that wasn’t Katniss?” he asks.

“It didn’t taste like her.” The man tilts his head, like a curious bird.

“Taste? Can you explain what you mean?” Peeta sighs, like it’s the most obvious thing in the world.

“I’ve kissed Katniss so many times; I know what she tastes like. Snow may have been able to make a mutt that looks like her, but she tasted different. And Katniss doesn’t kiss like that either.”

“So, what you’re telling me,” the little man says, cautiously, “is that you decided to kill her, because she doesn’t taste or kiss the way you remember?” Peeta nods seriously.