With no options left, a still airborne Daniel finally gave in to the advice of his augmented internal memory system.
The biografted computer had been pestering him for days.
“FLASH LIFE BEFORE EYESCREENS?” it asked over and over.
A few years back, Daniel, out of morbid curiosity, had bought a MS-2 Mortality Tracker app for his augmem.
Using sophisticated calculations, the program would estimate when a user was about to die, and then ask if the user wanted to view a memory recording of his or her existence.
Since the app had a rather pessimistic view of Daniel’s chances, it had asked him the question 324 times in the past couple of days.
Each time, Daniel had declined to answer.
However, as he watched the Onean shield dying around his ship, Daniel said yes.
His vision went black. Then bits of his life flooded past.
He watched his mother’s disappearance, his childhood in the Wei Cloudyard, his father’s funeral, his meeting with Trak—all in fragments almost too fast to see.
The images had emotional impact, sure, but they were quick—each one a brief psychological slap in the face.
Unlike normal memories, Daniel could freeze these ones for closer examination. However, if he did that, he wouldn’t get through them before the cannon killed him.
He saw the first time Rachel-7 made him laugh, his first kiss with Jeska, and his first day at the Cassandra Cloud facility.
Then the memories became too painful. He saw Jeska leaving him without a word. He saw the accident.
And he abruptly turned off the program.