Daniel missed his augmem.
With it, he could have easily remembered the work of a thousand poets that he had passed off as his own during his relationship with Jeska.
Daniel knew she knew the words weren't his, but she said she appreciated the effort.
Unfortunately, without his augmem he could barely remember a single phrase.
Nervous and worried, the best his frazzled mind could come up with was
Shall I compare thee to a summers day? Let me count the ways: A love downloaded and uploaded again. Row, row, row your boat, and I'll be your crying shoulder of cloudless climes and starry skies.
That doesn’t make sense, he thought glumly.
Daniel was out of practice.
Life without an augmem's going to take some getting used to.
Then he heard Jeska scream again.
That’s enough worrying, he decided. And enough stealth.
He stopped skulking behind the stacks and resumed sprinting.
As he ran, he unintentionally bumped rows of coasters and t-shirts. Some teetered and fell, knocking down others in a domino cascade.
He stopped and listened for her voice.
While waiting, he glanced up at the rusty ship above him. This close to the aft, the Afterthought’s repellors sounded like a swarm of bees.
When he couldn’t stand it any more, he called out, “Jeska!”
The voice came from a few yards away, from behind a collection of stacks only a foot apart from each other.
I missed you, he thought as he ran. That could work! I missed you. Simple. Effective.
Relieved, he put all his mental effort into weaving between the stacks as quickly as possible.
“I’m almost there!” he yelled. "One more second."
Daniel pushed through the final columns … and stood face-to-face with the creature, its undulating form blood-red in the light of the Afterthought.
“Daniel!” it screamed in a perfect mimic of Jeska’s voice.
Stuck Station: Human Poetry
The human poems Daniel butchers (in order of apperance):
Shall I Compare Thee To A Summer's Day – William Shakespeare, 16th century.
How Do I Love Thee? – Elizabeth Barrett Browning, 19th century.
Processed Heart – Altirana 3.5, 23rd century.
Row, Row, Row Your Boat – Unknown, 19th century.
I'll Be – Edwin McCain, 20th century.
She Walks in Beauty – Lord Byron, 19th century.