“Nothing? Not even a ‘congratulations?’” Rachel-7 asked, her voice emanating from every part of the Afterthought’s walls.
“Our captain doesn't know quality flying when he sees it,” Rachel-7 added.
That’s incorrect, thought Trak. Daniel knows the difference between garbage and gold; he just doesn’t care anymore.
Why else would Rachel and I be in this defenseless wreck? he thought, reexamining the ship around him with his optical sensors.
Trak listened to the Afterthought creak and groan.
A few years ago, Daniel would have had the place running clean in three hours.
In addition to its general lack of structural integrity, the Afterthought amenities included a weakened thruster that forced the ship to pull to the left and a life-signs scanner that displayed advertisements for every alien bazaar within two light years but only occasionally detected lifesigns.
The ship’s sole repair cloud might have been able to fix those problems, if it hadn’t been in worse shape than the Afterthought itself.
No matter how many times Daniel told it not to, the malfunctioning cloud continued to install kitchen appliances on the outer hull.
From a distance, the ship looked like it had slammed into an asteroid belt made of refrigerators and toasters.