I’m coming back into focus when Caesar asks him if he has a girlfriend back home. Peeta hesitates, then gives an unconvincing shake of his head.
‘Handsome lad like you. There must be some special girl. Come on, what’s her name?’ says Caesar.
Peeta sighs. ‘Well, there is this one girl. I’ve had a crush on her ever since I can remember. But I’m pretty sure she didn’t know I was alive until the reaping.’
Sounds of sympathy from the crowd. Unrequited love they can relate to.
‘She have another fellow?’ asks Caesar.
‘I don’t know, but a lot of boys like her,’ says Peeta.
‘So, here’s what you do. You win, you go home. She can’t turn you down then, eh?’ says Caesar encouraging-ly.
‘I don’t think it’s going to work out. Winning…won’t help in my case,’ says Peeta.
‘Why ever not?’ says Caesar, mystified.
Peeta blushes beet red and stammers out. ‘Because…because…she came here with me.’