Chapter 4 Summary
Haymitch has informed Katniss that she will be expected to marry Peeta. Their lives as victors will always be politically symbolic. Katniss is crushed in spite of Haymitch’s consolation that she could do a lot worse than Peeta. When Katniss stepped in for her sister Prim at the Reaping, she gave up her life. Even though she survived the Hunger Games, she is still forced to repress her emotions and desires so that she can be a symbol of the Capitol’s authority over the outlying districts. Now that the Victory Tour has begun, she will have to give up her body to her stylists, who will remove all her body hair and who fantasize about the “alterations” that they would like to see done to Katniss’s body.
One morning, as the District 12 victors travel by train to District 11 for their first stop on the Victory Tour, Katniss lashes out at Effie, the woman in charge of organizing their agenda. Peeta comforts Katniss by explaining that although he and Katniss have not been close since their return to District 12, he would like them to try to be friends. Katniss agrees to try, and Peeta takes her to see his paintings. All of the paintings depict scenes from the Hunger Games, and Katniss hates them. Peeta explains that he remembers the details so vividly because he sees these details in his nightmares at night. Painting is cathartic for him, though he still suffers from nightmares, as do Katniss and Haymitch. Perhaps Haymitch is right: Katniss could do a lot worse than Peeta. His comfort allows Katniss to gain control of her emotions, and she apologizes to Effie.
When the train arrives in the agricultural district, District 11, Katniss tries to prepare herself for the first stop of the Victory Tour. Her primary job is to quell rebellion before it can begin by pretending to be madly in love with Peeta. Unfortunately, her ally, Rue, was from District 11,...
(The entire section is 495 words.)