A/N: I was writing this to be its own story, but I figured it'd be a nice follow up to "The Baths". This is going to be darker and more serious than the first chapter. If you were hoping for more laughs, sorry.
I tried to keep my distance from Johanna when she came back from the Capitol. I just saw her, with her hair shaved and her body frail, and I didn't know what to say. What could I say? I just kept thinking that that could've been me. Had I not escaped, I would've been subjected to the same torture she'd suffered. On top of that, I didn't even want to free Johanna. It was nice that she was free. I didn't want her to suffer anymore. But I cared more about Peeta. I just felt guilty thinking about Johanna.
This seemed to work for a while. If anything, it looked like she was avoiding me too. One time I was in the showers when I noticed Johanna standing at the door. She stood there for a while, looking like she wasn't sure if she was going to go in or not. I went about my business, trying to ignore her. Eventually, she just left. At the time, I figured I was lucky. I didn't have to deal with her. After that, I didn't see her at the showers again. I was grateful that she seemed to be staying out of my way. Then I learned that she wasn't avoiding me.
See, while she was in the Capitol, she was tortured using electric shocks. They would dip in her in a tub of water to increase conductivity and run an electric current through her body. After that, she developed an aversion to water. I couldn't help but feel awful. Awful that I'd avoided her. Awful that I found her an inconvenience. Awful that I was happy she wasn't taking showers anymore. This made my guilt grow worse, but I couldn't just avoid her like I had before. I had to make things right.
My chance to do this came when I went to take a shower. When I got to the showers, I saw Johanna standing outside, like she'd done before. Like before, it wasn't clear if she would go inside or not. Her body weight would shift back and forth. Her head bobbed side to side. I cleared my throat. Johanna jumped and turned around. She glared at me, like she was angry. Well, it was more like she wanted to be angry. Her eyes told another story. They weren't the eyes of an angry person. They were the eyes of someone who was scared.
I walked to her and put my arm around her. She shook as I touched her. Her skin was grimy. I gently pushed her into the showers. She didn't resist me. Instead she went right along as I guided her to a free shower. As we got closer, I could see she was scared. Her eyes darted around the room and her breathing got faster. Her body trembled. She started to slow down and it became harder to push her to the shower, but I got her there. I changed out of my clothes and went to take her clothes off. She tried to run, but I got her. She didn't have any energy to fight me. She just stood there as I undressed her. Once that was done, I moved her under the shower head and turned on the water.
She cried when the water first hit her skin. She crumpled into a ball and collapsed onto my chest. I put an arm around her and pulled her close. With my other hand, I grabbed the soap and began scrubbing the grime off of her. I don't know how long that shower lasted. It felt like an hour at least. I know at one point Johanna stopped crying. She got up, took the soap from me, and began washing herself. I still didn't leave her. I stayed in the shower until Johanna was done. After that, I stopped avoiding Johanna and she stopped avoiding me.