I feel a profound loss. A loss that only comes with finishing an entire series, a series in which you come to love characters and lose them right alongside the others in the book. I suppose non-readers would find this pathetic, but there is a beauty in being captured by a series that they will never feel. And I feel sorry for those non-readers. It’s difficult to remind yourself that it’s fiction when all you feel is hatred and love for the author for subjecting you to such emotional pain and sorrow. I don’t feel closure…even though I couldn’t have fathomed Katniss’s life going in any other direction. As everyone changed throughout the book, I changed with them. I hated Katniss for her weakness, hated her for subjecting others to pain because of her indecision…but I couldn’t blame her. I could not in a million years blame the girl on fire. Regardless of whether she is the novel’s heroine or not. I wanted her to end up with Peeta, but it was wrong in the way that they were both so damaged. The way that even after 20 years, Katniss was still damaged. It feels so wrong that it’s hard to describe. I’m a hopeless romantic, and despite being pessimistic, believe in my whole being that there are happy endings for everyone. If only they’re open to it. I have wept for fictional characters, and like a true reader, I have no regrets. I’m already enlightened to distopia, and I’ve read countless novels where life is cruel and my heart breaks for their suffering…but it doesn’t make it any less painful to being brought into a world the author creates where the love they feel so painfully resonates with yours for them. Where every time their heart breaks, so does yours.
Oh, and angelic Prim, poor, poor, Prim.
Hopefully, in time, this feeling in my chest will cease, and then, I’ll read it again in the future, only to remember all those I grieved and loved and lost.
Hell, it’s hard to remind my heart with my head that it’s fiction. When the nightmares engulf your dreams, does the assurance that it’s not real make it any less wrenching? Any less terrifying? Or, do you wake up with the feeling that whatever you just dreamed, whether real or not, will haunt you until time causes it to fade?