She sat up suddenly and grabbed Caleb’s hand. “Do you feel that?”
“What?” He instinctively checked the mirrors, but there was nobody behind them.
“Someone . . .” Ava’s eyes glazed over. “Someone’s coming. Fast.”
Caleb stepped on the gas, searching the horizon. “Who? Anyone familiar?”
“What’s happening?” Sophie asked.
Ava shook her head. “I can’t tell. Not yet anyway. You think it’s Protectors?”
Caleb’s jaw tightened. “Or Rogues.”
“You think they know?” Ava glanced at Sophie.
“We don’t know. Not for sure.”
“Would somebody please tell me what’s going on?” Sophie shouted from the backseat.
The temperature in the car dipped as frost formed along the edges of the windows.
“You’ve got to calm her down,” Caleb muttered, taking a turn too fast and swerving to correct.
Ava didn’t argue, instead scrambling over the seat to take the girl’s hand. “Sophie, listen to me. You need to stay calm, okay? Try to breathe with me.”
“I’ll explain everything, but first you need to calm down. You see what’s happening?”
Through the mirror, Caleb saw her glance up at the roof of the car as snowflakes began to drift through the interior.
“I . . . I don’t understand,” Sophie murmured. “What’s—why is it snowing?”
“It’s you,” Ava said quietly. “You’re upset, and your gift is reacting.”
“I don’t understand what’s happening to me.” Sophie choked on a sob, and Caleb felt the telltale prickle of another Race signature along the edges of his consciousness.
“I feel them now,” he said, sitting taller in the seat and leaning forward as if willing the car to go faster.
Ava didn’t respond but remained focused on Sophie.
Caleb felt Ava’s gift and knew she was letting it flow into the girl a little, helping calm her.
“We’ll help you.” Ava sounded so calm and soothing. “We’ll help you learn to control it, but for right now, you need to calm down. Breathe with me, okay?”
Sophie nodded and swallowed tears as she tried to match Ava’s inhale and exhale.
The snow stopped.
“That’s good.” Ava nodded encouragingly. “Keep breathing. I need you to stay calm. Someone’s coming, and I’m guessing they’re after you.”
Sophie’s breath caught, and the ice gathering on the dashboard cracked.
“It’s okay,” Ava hurried to say. “Keep breathing. Stay calm. We’re going to keep you safe.”
Sophie gripped Ava’s hand, but she kept breathing slowly in and out. “How?”
Ava smiled. “You asked what I could do? Well, I’m about to show you.”