– You're worried.
– A bit.
She stared at him for a couple of seconds, before he asked her to please use the seat and the seatbelt if she wasn't going to be sleeping anymore.
– And what if I don't want to ?
Painful, unexpected flashes of fear struck Claire. A slurry of half imagined accidents and gruesome possibilities. She winced, gripped the car seat a little tighter.
– I can park the car until you feel like wearing a seatbelt, answered Sandy calmly. It's fine.
As if he hadn't been thinking about atrocities because of one sentence. Claire looked down, to the ground.
It wasn't gone at all. Now that she was awake, the stream of the adult's consciousness was loud and clear, in a near constant state of fear. He was concentrated on the road, clearly, but it didn't solve the problem that she could observe every single part of the decision making driving involved. Maybe she'd just been too tired to hear his thoughts before. Maybe she was just a horrible thing and the neighbors were right.
– Are you all right ? he asked.
Claire gritted her teeth, sat down on the seat like she was asked to, hoping it would maybe make things slow down a little.
– Fine, she ended up mumbling.