characters: Carina Kleid (OC), mentions of Johanna Mason, Katniss Everdeen, President Coriolanus Snow, Peeta Mellark, Finnick Odair.

setting: throughout the years before the 3rd quarter quell.

disclaimer: without prejudice. the names of all characters contained here are the property of Suzanne Collins and Lionsgate. no infringements of these copyrights are intended, and are used here without permission. Carina Kleid and all other character labelled (OC) in the header above belong exclusively to me.


SOFTER THAN SHADOWS;;

prologue


i am a woman.

in my veins flows duration

yielding changeability

and still survival.

Mirjam Proos


The moment Carina Kleid's name was called out in the Reaping, she knew, that no one would bet on her. After all, how many victors came out of the District, which produced fabric and clothing? Under ten.

However, in the Games, someone had still sponsored her or merely showed pity on her, because the woman – or girl back then – had received two gifts: firstly a small dagger, which had helped her to… kill, and a scarf to cover her face in the burning hot climate of a desert.

Perhaps she got the presents because of her wrathful or stone-cold face expression while walking on the stage in the Reaping, or her kind of a high training score (7), or even her clear disdain for the Games in the Interview with Mr. Flickerman (which wasn't quite likely).

Nevertheless, in the end, she had won. With her hands still around the throat of the District 3 girl, she had won. The only memories Carina could still recall from the few minutes in the hovercraft after winning, she could deduce that she had been frozen in shock, not moving from one of the seats. She had won, had been the only thought running through her mind.

In her concluding interview after the Games with Flickerman had been—interesting to say at least. The girl had cursed the Capitol and their dearest President Coriolanus Snow himself to the deep, burning depths of Hell.

It had not gone well.

When Carina had at last returned home, her family, which had consisted of an old cat and a lovely willow growing on the graves of her parents, had been burned before recognition.

On the ashes left on the doorsteps of her new house lay a white rose, that smelled all too much of the blood on her hands. Wicked words rang in her head with the voice of their president, coming into being from her mere imagination and faith in the cruelty of her country's heads.

Do you truly

believe

the Victory is still

yours?

Carina had not cried. Not one tear had escaped her eyes. Instead, she had been devoid of any emotion.

And on her Victory tour, she had changed her nature. She was the perfect picture of an enchanting, happy, charming, and pleasant young lady. Panem, or more importantly the Capitol loved her. She wasn't quite Finnick Odair yet, but she was on her way to be loved.

Few years later, when the girl from 7 won by hiding her true nature, the mentor for District 10 had advised her to keep her mouth shut and smiling. Do not say, 'no'.

Miss Mason had not listened.

A month went by, and her family was killed.

Later, Carina discovered, it was because of Coriolanus Snow, who had the most desirable, the most charming victors doubling as prostitutes in the Capitol nightlife.

(Thanks to her quite usual features, she was not required to be that.)

It almost made her break.

In an interview with some low Capitol bug, she was asked about Johanna and her brash but rebellious ways. She had almost shrugged and answered with, 'Oh, the President merely wanted revenge after she had refused to be his call girl,' but had luckily held her tongue.

The only reply had been of marvels at her wit and congratulations for her victory.

Icy and callous days, weeks, months, years filled with lies passed, and the newest attraction was fire, or to be exact the Girl on Fire.

No doubt existed in her mind that her tributes would lose. The District 12 Girl would win. Her biting cynicalness, coldness, and unyielding will to do anything to save her own skin wouldn't leave no one else standing in the Arena except her.

The girl's District partner, however, had no chance of surviving. He was too sweet, too charming, too—good.

Nonetheless, the minute the girl from 12 got those berries from her pocket, Carina knew.

Riots, uprisings, revolutions. . . fire was on the rise.

Hope prevailed.

The Girl on Fire was now more than the cold female District 12 tribute. She was the Spark intended to light the fire of the Rebellion.

And in that moment, Carina Kleid believed.


if you wish for me to continue this, send a message or review or whatever. if not, well, i might put up a chapter or two, but that's it.