How are you? How is life in the new District 12? Do people still look in awe at the ‘Girl on Fire’? Did you name your son after your father? Does Haymitch still find solace in alcohol and Peeta in his paintings? And have you found your source of comfort after Gale left?
Katniss, I came across you after meeting some Potters and some Jacksons, but you struck an entirely different chord. You made me realise that some heroes are not necessarily brave. Some people are just born to fight. They might not want to, and they might not be strong enough, but that is what they do—they fight to survive. You were just a scared, sixteen-year-old girl from Seam who wanted to run away to the woods as soon as she realised the Capitol might come after her family. However, you stayed, armed with your bow and arrow. I feel that this is what happens to people who care too much and love too hard. You refuse to leave behind the fallen, even if that leads to the ultimate sacrifice.
Your story made me experience an epiphany: the rebels, the children of revolutions, never get the happy ending they deserve. From cramming dates and names of rulers, history became analysing the twisted nature of politics and weeping for the tragedies of heroes before lauding them for their grit and spirit. It became clear that fighting against tyranny isn’t about playing with guns or exciting escapades from the police. It is about the shiver that runs down your spine, halting your heartbeat as your comrade gets shot before you. It is singing them lullabies as they drift off to peaceful oblivion. Rebellions won or not, leaves half of the nation dead—or dead inside.
So, I will ask you a question that I usually ask the historical radicals: If I told you how it would end, will you do it all over again? Will you volunteer as tribute in Prim’s place if I told you how the ‘Girl on Fire’ became a sad mockery of the Everdeen sisters’ fate?
I know this is an absurd question to ask, but I believe you will. You were the Mockingjay, an inevitability—something the Capitol never intended to exist. Even after all the atrocities, you adjusted to the new world without the bondage, poverty, and The Hunger Games. It seemed like you had some help, and the boy with the bread kept his promise, “Always.”
Katniss Everdeen, you have created a legacy of your own. I promise to think about you when I see a youngster standing against oppressors. I promise to recall your words at the reaping when I look at fiercely protective mothers and sisters. I promise to remember you when I see a small girl in two plaits saying that green is her favourite colour.
I will always look up to you. Real or not real?
A girl who wishes to make you proud one day
~Written by Shranya Shrivastava for MTTN
~Edited by Tulika Somani for MTTN
~Featured Image by Akshay Dhansoia for MTTN