“Peeta, you know how to hunt, okay? I know this is tough but so are you, I raised you to be strong.” The fear in his voice is audible.
I look at my father with the calm expression I always wear to mask my troubles. “I’m not winning.” I tell him, not from doubting myself, but because of who I want, no, who I need to win.
He puts his large hand on my shoulder. “Now is not the time for that.” He says, choking on the last word. The desperation in his voice is thick and for a moment, I feel a pang of guilt for what I will do to him while I am in the arena. But once I think of Katniss’s family, I know it’s what I have to do. She’s the only one they have.
“I have to save the girl with the bread…” I pause, and watch his eyes fill with tears. “I have to.” I repeat, more stern. “And you, dad, you have to make sure her family doesn’t go hungry.”
He doesn’t seem to be listening to me. “Dad.” I demand. “Please.” I lightly grab his shoulders. “This is my dying wish.” He nods and right before the Peacekeepers come, I say, my voice just above a whisper, “And when she comes back,” I pause, knowing that those words are true, she will come back, “Be sure to tell her that I did it all for her and-”
My words are cut off by big men forcing my father to leave. “tell her I love her.” I whisper the unheard words to the walls of the Justice Building.