011a. Sophia's Sleep Struggles (Bonus Stream)

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Sophia tries to stay awake.

After the daring rescue of Zistor Flexx, most of the freeholders head to bed: Talus with Zistor, the rest on their own, but Sophia stays up in the Exhaust, drinking coffee. She is surprised by Cog without SK4G, carrying a backpack. He tells her that he had to leave home, as his parents (who don't know about his being a Kithain) "don't understand him". He tells her that he has too many real-world responsibilities, and that he just wants more time to work on his inventions and creations. Sophia, moved by his worry and anxiety, tells him that life does in fact get better. She tells him of her feelings towards her own family: although she loves them, they also don't know about her double-life. Cog lashes out at his parents, telling Sophia that they don't know how special she is, and the sidhe reassures him that they do know… just maybe not for the reasons he thinks. Suggesting he go to bed, Cog leaves the Exhaust a little lighter.

A few moments later, Claude comes into the Exhaust, looking worse for wear. Sophia asks him how he feels about their latest mission, and he tells her that he does what he does because he has to, not because he wants to. He is looking forward to a day when someone from The Spark will accomplish a great many things, but for now, he will continue to do anything that needs to be done for The Red Branch, and for the freeholders.

When Claude presses Sophia on her reasons for avoiding sleep, she confides in him: when she first met Braum, she felt above his pain and suffering, observing it from a distance. After having "met" Rick in Braum's dreams, she is now terrified that he will begin to hunt her. Claude passes along some advice: there's no need to challenge one's self to be brave; take any help you can get! If it would be easier to not sleep alone, there's no reason why Sophia shouldn't. When Sophia gently rebuffs his advances, he drags a blanket into the Exhaust and sets up behind the bar, vowing to sleep near Sophia so that she might feel more at ease.

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