Title: the beautiful wreckage
*Mockingjay spoilers ahead*
I must be completely honest and say that I did not expect to like this fic half as much as I did. It has an interesting starting point, just after the news is put out that Squad 451 (Katniss, Gale, Finnick, Boggs and others from Thirteen) is dead. This effectively sets the tone of the beginning of the piece and of Johanna and Annie's relationship, here:
“But they were the last thing I had. I don’t have anything anymore. I don’t have…” But she’s not sure what she doesn’t have. The strength. The will. The reason. Maybe she doesn’t have any of it.
“Well, now you have me,” Annie says as she pulls the smaller woman into a hug. Johanna doesn’t react. She can’t. She knows Annie meant it as a reassurance, an offering of peace – of friendship, even. But Johanna can’t see it that way.
All she can see is that this woman who was Finnick’s life – his strength, his will, his reason to live – is all that’s left of him now. And it is Johanna’s duty, her unbearable burden, to see that nothing happens to her.
And, as a post-Mockingjay story, it explores the vote on the final Games, the post-war chaos, Finnick's (real) death, raising Annie's son, the nightmarish flashbacks to the past - and all aren't just "there" to make the story canon, they're used - and used effectively - as plot points and development. Not a word is wasted.
The style of the piece can only be called beautiful. Consistent in voice and poetic, even in very dialogue-driven scenes it shines through as a real, positive attribute to the story. Writing like this creates an all-the-more intense and tragic tale. Truly wonderful.
Until next time, may the odds be ever in your favor.