Beamer woke up with a shock. What was that sound?
- "... ought to you by: Thompson's Teeth, the only teeth strong enough to eat other teeth!"
Frankie must be digging through Crank's archives again. He unstrapped from his pilot hammock and swung handily through the corridor into the ... entertainment room. He used to call it his man-cave but with Frankie on board that wasn't true anymore.
- "Where did you find that old stuff?"
Frankie turned around with a huge grin on her face.
- "It's an old show from pre-galactic times. Very good stuff. Apparently your great-great-great-... your ancestor 11 generations ago had a love for this stuff and spent his entire life assembling a huge collection of it."
Beamer tried to count back in his head but he got stuck around the 8th or 9th forefather.
- "What was his name?"
Frankie punched a few buttons and a mug-shot with name and titles appeared in the corner of the viewer. Beamer nodded as he recognized the face.
- "Ah yes, Bender Miasma. He was a very learned guy, did some quite innovative AI research. Some of Crank's custom modules are still running on the concepts he wrote, mainly the personality module. My grandfather modernized a lot of it but I remember him mentioning it. That stuff is all way over my head though. When I have a computer failure I grab a wrench, not a keyboard."
Frankie rolled her eyes at him in that typical way only women seem to have evolved the ocular muscles for.
- "No not to smash the computer! To jump-start the FSD manually I mean. I know at least five ways to get it going without computer support. Three of them void the warranty, one will make you cough blood for a week. The fifth will get you in jail... if they catch you. But I can always get it going when I need to."
Frankie laughed and gently floated over to give him a good morning kiss.
- "Well that's good to know. If we ever get there please pick the fifth one, then if it fails we can just sit back and wait for the authorities to bring us in. Why don't you go freshen up, I'll make us some breakfast and join you in the cockpit."
Beamer hugged her back firmly and ran his fingers through her bristly bright pink mohawk.
- "Sounds like a plan. I'll get us underway. Don't use the microwave, ever since I got the FSD boosted to the maximum it seems to interfere slightly with the targeting, I don't want to end up inside a star."
Frankie nodded and skillfully pushed off against his shoulders leaving him tumbling head over heels, poking her tongue out at him as she floated backwards through the hatch, stretching her body just in time to glide through the small opening without ever touching any of the edges. He treated her to his best wet floor falling man impression just before she grabbed a hold and swung around the corner into the kitchen compartment.
When Beamer entered the cockpit 10 minutes later the ship was filling with the smells of eggs and bacon. He knew she had found some eggs in Colonia but where the frell did she get the bacon from? He decided against asking, usually in such situations it turned out to be something gross that she somehow managed to prepare and flavour like something delicious. Sometimes it was better not to know.
He reviewed the scans from the previous day. Crank had been right, Frankie was much better at spotting red and orange giants and they had scanned at least half a dozen systems of each. If he hadn't spotted that Class F White Supergiant himself he would have felt like a taxi driver. Together with a couple of random systems plus a few neutron stars that provided a lot of stuffing for the holes in his data. Now it was time to push on though, or they would never reach the core. No detours today he told himself, just scan the interesting systems that happen to be on the route in a straight line to Sag A. Unless they spotted a Red Supergiant of course, the exception to the rule.
By the time Frankie came in with breakfast he had already done 500 ly.