This is the thirteenth section of the eighth chapter of Sonnets from a Proton. The novel starts here.
The next section is here.
“So” asked Laurence “You’re an experimental AI on an experimental boat with an experimental drive with an untested crew and we’re going into an unknown problem. Why?”
“Too much at once you think?” mused the ship “I like to think that nothing else could do this job. All these new things at once and no time to train anyone you need the best AI you can get.”
“I’m just concerned that too much faith is being placed in one untested component.”
“Sure, your drive design and your ability to keep it working worries me too.”
“Touche, yes two can play at that game.”
“Anyway I should mention, we’ve had some intel on the bats, we’re leaving sooner than expected.”
“The bats?” asked Laurence
“Ah, sorry, the general coined the term. They’re flying around in space. They are based on asteroids in caves. Rats live in caves and flying rats gives way to bats.” the ship paused to see if Laurence had digested this “Look it was either that or pigeons and that just doesn’t have quite the right imagery.”
“Oh you’ll know this” asked Laurence ignoring the AI for now, “Is the captain busy at the moment?”
“No” replied the ship “Well he’s left the running of the bridge to the XO, why?”
“Good, where is he? I mean where is his cabin?” The ship told him “Good I’ll go and see him then."